The following are Easter Eggs that appear in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim:
(To add to these, please keep them in Alphabetical order)
- A Choose Your Own Adventure style book can be found in Kolb and the Dragon.
The Bourne Series
- The Black Briar clan in Riften may be an allude to the Bourne Series of books and movies. (Further supported by the fact that one of the major actresses in this game also appeared in the movie series).
The Clive Barker Connection
- In Riften, you can receive a small box called the Lexicon for the quest Unfathomable Depths from an Argonian named From-Deepest-Fathoms, who is MORE than happy to get rid of it. The Lexicon STRONGLY resembles the Lament Configuration (the puzzle box) from the "Hellraiser" horror movie series.
- In the quest "A Night to Remember" you participate in a drinking game with a man, The next morning you wake up and do not remember a thing about the night before. Basically you run around Skyrim cleaning up things, returning goats, whole nine yards. If there were cop cars in Skyrim you probably would have taken one of those too...
- The part of the quest where you have to return the prized goat to the man in Rorikstead bears resemblance to the scene where the 'Wolf Pack' is tasked with returning Mike Tyson's tiger.
- High Hrothgar bears the name of the King that Beowulf fights for in the epic poem Beowulf. Hrothgar was also a factual Danish king.
Lord of the Rings
- In Whiterun, the giant tree there is called the Gildergreen. It is grown from the Eldergleam, the oldest living thing in Skyrim, but is failing. This references the Gondorian captial of Minas Tirith in Lord of the Rings: Return of the King, where the legendary White Tree faces a similar fate.
- Whiterun also bears a heavy resemblence to Edoras , the capital of Rohan in Lord of the Rings. Whiterun's geography, architecture, layout, and flag are all very similar.
The Legend of King Arthur
- If you have found Broken Tower Redoubt, directly south of it there will be a place called Rebel's Cairn where you will find a pile of stones in the front of the cave and there will be a Steel Sword in the top stone, which is a reference to the sword in the stone in the legend of King Arthur.
- Slightly Northeast of Bleakwind Basin, there is a pond with a skeletal arm holding a leveled sword coming out of it, which is a reference to the Lady in the Lake in the legend of King Arthur.
- The Lady Stone is centered in a lake, resembling the lady in the lake.
- This is the first instance of this item in the Elder Scrolls series by all appearances , however limited that information may be. While verified evidence to the contrary is welcome, it should have applicable source included.
- The fact that no other item in Skyrim carries the 'Notched' description, combined with the fact that the pickaxe is found in a distinctive area (The highest point in Skyrim) and surrounded by an uncanny amount of mineable ore leads to the conclusion that this is indeed a tip of the hat to Notch. It is also supported by the fact wielding the pickaxe increases your smithing skill, the essential 'crafting' of Skyrim. The tool covers both mining and crafting.
Monty Python and the Holy Grail
- When fighting, enemies occasionally yell "It's just a flesh wound!" which is a reference to the scene with the Black Knight in which his arm is cut off before exclaiming said phrase.
- During the Dark Brotherhood questline you will receive a quest called Recipe For Disaster, this is a reference to a quest on Runescape, also called Recipe For Disaster.
Star Trek Reference
- In the village of Ivarstead there is a woman named Temba Wide-Arm. This is a reference to the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode Darmok, where one of the often-repeated phrases is "Temba, his arms wide."
Three Billy Goats Gruff
- On your way to Hag Rock Redoubt, there is a bridge with a dead troll underneath. If it's your first time visiting, you will witness two goats meeting a third at the end of the bridge then running off together. This is a reference to the children's tale, "Three Billy Goats Gruff," where a troll is defeated by a trio of goats.
Star Wars Reference
- During the Companion quest "Animal Extermination", inside the cave you are sent to, there is a skeleton hanging upside down from the ceiling. Below the skeleton is a glowing sword. This may reference to Star Wars when Luke was caught on Hoth and hung from the cavern ceiling. The sword below representing his lightsaber. (This quest is a Radiant quest, please provide name of location as quest locations differ each playthrough)
- If you have Lydia as Housecarl she will often say "I have a bad feeling about this" or "I have a very bad feeling about this" a reference to George Lucas the creator of both Star Wars and Indiana Jones, both films have that phrase coming back very often.
- When you go to the Sleeping Giant Inn during the quest The Horn of Jurgen Windcaller you will have the possibility to say to Delphine something like "I was expecting someone taller" a reference to when Luke walks into the cell to rescue Leia and she says, "Aren't you a little short for a stormtrooper?"
- If you travel with the ghost of Lucien Lachance he will some times say "I feel a disturbance in the void" which is a reference to "I feel a disturbence in the force" Lucien Lachance also dresses a lot like a sith lord, and worships Sithis (which Sith is 2/3 of the word).
Let The Right One In Reference
- Babette, a member of the Skyrim's Dark Brotherhood, is a possible reference to the Swedish book and movie of the same name Let The Right One In, aka Let Me In. Both she and the book's major character Eli were turned into vampires at a young age (Babette 10, Eli 11), and upon first entering the Sanctuary, Babette is telling a story of her last contract in which it is heavily alluded that she used her seemingly young age to beguile a pedophile into following her to a dark alley where she completed her contract by killing him. Let the Right One In has a pedophile character named Hakan who has a relationship with Eli.
- Babette may also allude to Claudia, a child-turned-vampire from The Vampire Chronicles. Claudia is known in Interview with the Vampire to use her age to charm her victims. She also uses a poison of her own making to poison her "dark father" and gashes his throat, both techniques expected of an assassin in the Dark Brotherhood. The creation of her own poisons is also a connection to Babette being an alchemist.
Army of Darkness
- At the beggining of the game when you get off the cart and into Helgen, one of the other prisoners (the one in front) is adamant that he is innocent, "No, I'm not a rebel, you can't do this!" which is a reference to Henry the Red's men in the Army of Darkness, in which one of his men say a similar line and run away, and also get killed by bow and arrow.
The Headless Horseman
- At night on the way to Northwatch Keep for the "Missing in Action" mission or on the way to the tomb of Ysgramor for the "Glory of the Dead" mission, you have a chance of encountering a spectral horseman without a head galloping toward you full tilt. He carries an axe on his back, which is likely a reference to Washington Irving's "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow". If you follow him, he takes you to a graveyard were there are several skeletons to fight and a Master chest. It contains several enchanted items.
- You can also meet the horseman South-East of Morthal. He will lead you to Lost Valkygg roughly in between Labyrinthian and Skyborn Altar.
The Wheel of Time
- One of the checkpoints is Mount Anthor - complete with a dragon. This may be a reference to Rand Al'Thor, the Dragon Reborn, born on Dragonmount, from the Wheel of Time.
Alice in Wonderland
- When Sheogorath is first encountered he is conducting a teaparty in the middle of a forest, which is referencing the Mad Hatter (a fellow madman)'s tea parties.
A Song of Ice and Fire books
- There is an NPC in Dawnstar named Horik Halfhand, a reference to the Qhorin Halfhand character in A Song of Ice and Fire.
- Edit: This could also be a reference to Berek Halfhand, the mythical hero from "The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever" series by Stephen R. Donaldson.'
- It is interesting to note that a recurring random encounter features a Fire mage and an Ice mage fighting one another. This may or may not be related.
- When on the Dark Brotherhood quest, the player encounters a mission called Whispers in the Dark which is the name of a song by the band Skillet.
- In the mission Contract: Kill Narfi, when you locate Narfi find which way he's facing, If you walk that way about 200 yards you will find a odly colored rock with a rat/skeever by it. He is friendly and won't attack you, but if you activate him, he will turn in a full circle and say "Pikachuu!!!"
- The East Empire Company is a reference to the East India Company.
- Sovngarde has very notable similarities to the Norse Valhalla.
- Asgeir Snow-Shod in Riften mentions the phrase "blood, sweat and tears".
Previous Games References
- M'aiq reappears in Skyrim. He appeared in Morrowind and Oblivion, as an Easter Egg Basket of sorts for developers to comment on some of the game features that were removed, added, or were/are planned for the series as well as other RPG gaming community related remarks.
- During Sheogorath's quest, he tries to guess who the message you bring him is from. One of his picks was King Lysanders ghost
- At the inn in Solitude, the bard sometimes play the melody heard in the stores in The Elder Scrolls II: Daggerfall.
- Some NPC's in the game comment "Let me guess, someone stole your sweetroll." or something along those lines, this is a clear reference to Fallout 3 where the bully at your birthday party demands you hand over your sweetroll that was given to you as a gift. The Fallout event is, in turn, a reference to the character creation process in the Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind, wherein the player character is asked how they would react to a bully stealing their sweetroll in order to determine the player's class. The stolen sweetroll is thus a long-running Bethesda joke. It can also be found when creating your character in "Daggerfall", the second Elders Scrolls game Bethesda released.
- Deep in Calcelmo's Dwemer Mueseum is a Dwemer Puzzle Cube. This is a reference to Morrowind's main questline where you had to find a Dwemer Puzzle Cube in Dwemer ruins outside of Balmora.
- During the quest The Cure For Madness in the ice cave portion of the quest, you encounter a unique ice troll named Udefrykte which is a reference to The Udyrfrykte from Bloodmoon who bears a similar appearance and is also found in a similar location though their names are spelled slightly different. The Udyfrykte in turn is likely a reference to Grendel in the epic Beowulf.
- Lucien Lachance returns in Ghost form when you obtain the power "Summon Spectral Assassin".
- Upon finding a Crimson Nirnroot (see bottom of the page) you start a quest named, "A Return To Your Roots" which is a reference to Oblivion's Nirnroot quest.
- The Gray-Fox statue can be found in the blockaded house in Riften.
- The husk of a giant mudcrab can be found within the plains surrounding Whiterun, continueing the giant mud crab tradition from prior games. It is, however, very much dead upon discovery, unlike in Oblivion, where the giant mudcrab is alive and fightable (There is a quest were you have to fight the Guardian Mudcrab Spirit at that location).
- In the Dark Brotherhood, if you read Cicero's Journal Volume 1, he writes; 27th of Rain's Hand, 4E 187 Completed the Arena contract. I ultimately decided to pose as a starstruck fan, and immediately got into the Grand Champion's good graces. While escorting the arrogant fool through the Great Forest, I slashed his throat and left the corpse for the bears. This is a reference to the Adoring Fan in Oblivion.
- If you fail a persuasian check when first encountering Nelacar in the Azura's Star quest, he says "Right, now tell me the one about the Argonian maid and the lusty baron." This is a reference to the book from the Elder Scrolls series: The Lusty Argonian Maid. The same book exists in Skyrim, easily missed on a bookshelf amid burned and ruined books as well as found in Haelga's room in Haelga's Barracks in Riften.
- Shadowmere, the horse given to you in Oblivion by Lucien Lachance, is again given to you by Astrid during the Dark Brotherhood quests. If you have the spell "Summon Spectral Assassin" cast and Lucien is following you as the spectre, as he approaches Shadowmere he will say "Shadowmere, my old and dear friend."
- The Uderfrykte can be found during the Dark Brotherhood quest The Cure For Madness. Unlike it's predecessors however it is not invisible.
- When asking Elgrim about his store, he mentions that it is hard to get painted troll fat, an ingredient from Oblivion, only acquirable by painted trolls from the quest A Brush With Death.