Elder Scrolls
Elder Scrolls

For other uses, see Goblin.

Goblins are small, but tough, humanoid creatures in The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion. They are a bit shorter in size than the average Mer. Goblins are blue or green skinned, with bulbous eyes. Most goblins are part of a goblin clan that congregates around a certain location, particularly caves and mines, but they also may be found living in sewers or various ruins. The weapons they wield are generally based upon the Hero's level.

Culture and playability

It is impossible to play as a goblin. They count as creatures killed on the inventory page that lists "People Killed" and "Creatures Killed"; this suggests that goblins are not sapient. This is not necessarily true, however, as there is much evidence of animal domestication and social structure with ranks among those in a particular group. These ranks include warriors, such as skirmishers and berserkers, and leaders, such as witches, shamans, and chiefs.

They also separate themselves among clans which control their own territory, which are usually caves. There are also rumors that they worship Malacath.[1] While there is enough information to understand that goblins have more intelligence and organizational skills than a Mudcrab, they are certainly not considered 'civilized' or sapient by the other races, and there is no evidence of any peaceful interaction between goblins and the other races.


Goblins tend to live underground or in dark caves and mines, feeding on rat meat. Many goblin abodes have roasted rats or rat pens.

Appearances in other games

Goblins first appeared in The Elder Scrolls: Arena, but were not in The Elder Scrolls II: Daggerfall. Initially, they were also not found in The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind, but were later included in the The Elder Scrolls III: Tribunal expansion. The goblins did not make an appearance in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim however, as their role in Skyrim seems to be replaced by that of the Falmer (and later Rieklings in the Dragonborn expansion).

General types

A Goblin Witch wielding a Goblin Shaman Staff.

There are several general types of goblins:

General stats

Goblins demonstrate greater endurance and higher hit points than most humanoid races, such as Humans and Ogres. They wear their own undroppable armor and clothing, however, warrior-types typically wield one-handed blunt weapons and shields, which can be dropped or looted.

Otherwise, most goblin types have normal weaknesses, deal physical damage, and drop generic items and leveled weapons. There are exceptions to this, however, namely Shamans and Warlords.

At higher levels, it is possible to come across Goblin Warlords. Tall, fast, and physically powerful, they are very effective shield users, and in turn overwhelm both shields and armor with powerful blows. Upon perceiving their enemies, Warlords tend to charge at full speed, then leap in with a strong forward attack.

Goblin Shamans employ a variety of ranged magical attacks; in close combat, however, they will attempt to flee. Shamans typically conjure zombies and cast shock, frost, or poison spells. They drop staves and (usually silver) daggers.

Soul Level



There are eight goblin clans scattered throughout Cyrodiil. Each has a "home cave" and a Goblin Totem Staff.

  • Bitterfish Clan – Based in Miscarcand
    • Bitterfish Goblin
    • Bitterfish Goblin Berserker
    • Bitterfish Goblin Shaman
    • Bitterfish Goblin Skirmisher
  • Bloody Hand Tribe – Based in Cracked Wood Cave TESIV Goblin Bloody Hand banner.png
    • Bloody Hand Goblin
    • Bloody Hand Goblin Berserker
    • Bloody Hand Goblin Chef
    • Bloody Hand Goblin Rat Farmer
    • Bloody Hand Goblin Shaman
    • Bloody Hand Goblin Skirmisher
    • Bloody Hand Goblin War Chief
  • Dust Eater Clan – Based in Barren Mine TESIV Goblin Dust Eater.png
    • Dust Eater Goblin Berserker
    • Dust Eater Goblin Shaman
    • Dust Eater Goblin Skirmisher
    • Dust Eater Goblin War Chief
  • Rock Biter Clan – Based in Timberscar Hollow TESIV Goblin Rock Biter.png
    • Rock Biter Goblin
    • Rock Biter Goblin Berserker
    • Rock Biter Goblin Shaman
    • Rock Biter Goblin Skirmisher
    • Rock Biter Goblin Warchief
  • Sharp Tooth Clan – Based in Derelict Mine TESIV Goblin Sharp Tooth.png
    • Sharp Tooth Goblin
    • Sharp Tooth Goblin Berserker
    • Sharp Tooth Goblin Chef
    • Sharp Tooth Goblin Shaman
    • Sharp Tooth Goblin Skirmisher
    • Sharp Tooth Goblin War Chief
  • Skull Breaker Clan – Based in Wenderbek Cave TESIV Goblin Skull Breaker.png
    • Skull Breaker Goblin
    • Skull Breaker Goblin Berserker
    • Skull Breaker Goblin Shaman
    • Skull Breaker Goblin Skirmisher
    • Skull Breaker Goblin War Chief
  • Three Feather Clan – Based in Plundered Mine TESIV Goblin Three Feather.png
    • Three Feather Goblin
    • Three Feather Goblin Berserker
    • Three Feather Goblin Skirmisher
    • Three Feather Goblin Warchief
    • Three Feathers Goblin Shaman
  • White Skin Clan – Based in Goblin Jim's Cave TESIV Goblin White Skin.png
    • White Skin Goblin
    • White Skin Goblin Berserker
    • White Skin Goblin Skirmisher
    • White Skin Goblin War Chief

Goblin wars

Goblins often go to war with other goblin clans, usually because one clan has stolen another clan's Goblin Totem Staff.

One immediate example of this involves the White Skin Clan and the Sharp Tooth Clan, both of which can be found close to Skingrad. In order to assert dominance or prove who is better, a clan may steal the totem staff of another clan, initiating a goblin war. Inside the cave of the Sharp Tooth clan, it is possible to find the White Skin's totem staff, along with White Skin Goblins combating the Sharp Tooth to get their staff back.

Upon taking a goblin totem staff, there are two options; sell it, or toy with the goblins at their expense. To do this, simply deposit the staff anywhere, and the staff's respective clan will clamber around the area to protect it, no matter how far away it is. Alternatively, placing a goblin staff at a settlement or within a city will cause the clan to attack whoever is near it (note that the goblins will likely kill many, so it is not recommended to save after doing this, as many shopkeepers, guild members etc. can be killed). Another option is to leave the staff near to, or within, another goblin clan's cave, causing the two groups to combat each other. Stealing all the staves in the game and putting them in one place may seem fun, but remember that such an action would cause excessive lag with the large amount of goblins on screen at once, so take caution to overdo it.

However, this is only a small list of examples of what can be done. Stealing the totem staves and placing them around Cyrodiil can be endlessly fun. Caves filled with the most powerful of enemies are also entertaining ideas, as are placing them at Daedra-infested Ayleid Ruins, or even within Cloud Ruler Temple, home of the Blades. A staff can also be sold for a considerable sum, which is also an option worth considering to gain easy money.

Note: If the Hero plans on initiating a goblin war, do not kill the respective shamans of each clan (or in the case of the White Skins, Goblin Jim). They do not respawn, and doing so will make it impossible to set off any conflict, as without a magical leader the clans cannot sense the whereabouts of their artifacts. It is best to kill the rest, take the Totem Staff, and spare the shamans.


  • It is said that the Tsaesci enslaved all the goblins in Akavir, and used them as slaves or sustenance.


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Description: Goblin Aware Sound