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  • Since this is something that's been talked about frequently on this blog, I decided that it would be better as it's own forum. So, do you think Michael Kirkbride's writings are canon? Why or why not? 

    Before you start commenting on here, I have something to say. I will not tolerate Flame Wars on this forum, you're allowed to respectfully express your opinion, but don't insult or intimidate someone if they disagree with you. 

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    • As long as it´s not confirmed by Bethesdas writers it by definition, is literaly not canon. It´s just Fanfic then.

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    • They're canon as long as they don't conflict with in-game lore.

      Not to mention that MKs work frequently shows up in TES games. Heimskrs dialogue is one example.

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    • Kirkbride was one of the major contributors to The Elder Scrolls franchise, without him TES would likely remain the generic fantasy setting it was in Arena and Daggerfall. For this very reason he has gained the respect of so many fans.

      There are so many rumors about him and Bethesda. Did he really leave on good terms, was he kicked out for drug abuse, what was the contract work he did, was Skyrim's lore inspired by his writings, is he and Todd planing a reboot, did Bethesda writers really aprove C0DA? It's all irrelevant, what we can clearly observe is that there are no disputes among Kirkbride and Bethesda. Both parties are frienly to each other, it's only the fans that are having a war.

      A fan movement was started with the release of C0DA - End to the Canon Wars. We all LOVE the franchise, why are WE fighting over it? There are no rights or wrongs, gaps can be filled in various ways, it's all up to your own interpretation. Now, don't misunderstand me, opinions can and should still be shared, but in a non-hostile way. We should all lose the MEMORY of the DEAD LANGUAGE "canon".

      There are different stories, that you may or may not connect (linearly) - stories of Bethesda, stories of Zenimax, stories of Kirkbride, stories of Keyes. You may only enjoy some of them, or, perhaps, just one, but you have no right to take away other's JOY.

      In my own experience - I was once very sceptic towards the writings of Kirkbride, but I've realized, that it was out of jelousy, out of not-knowing, out of fear to change. And if we're being all law-abiding - it's Zenimax who is owner of the IP. Then why are we considering TESO lorebreaking?

      Sequel to the universe - C0DA.

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    • I'd just like to point out that Bethesda isn't against using outside writers to establish in-game canon. Take for example the two Elder Scrolls novels, Infernal City and Lord of Souls. Both were written by Greg Keyes, an author un-affiliated with Bethesda. Yet they used his novels as canon for Skyrim. His novels had the following in them: the Thalmor, the Red Year, the Argonian Invasion of Morrowind, the Mede Dynasty, years before they were first introduced in-game in Skyrim. Though to be fair, Keyes does state in hte foreward that he worked closely with Bethesda to ensure the novels were accurate.

      So if anyone thinks Kirkbride's writtings aren't canon just because he's not with Bethesda anymore, that's false.

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    • Draevan13 wrote:
      I'd just like to point out that Bethesda isn't against using outside writers to establish in-game canon. Take for example the two Elder Scrolls novels, Infernal City and Lord of Souls. Both were written by Greg Keyes, an author un-affiliated with Bethesda. Yet they used his novels as canon for Skyrim. His novels had the following in them: the Thalmor, the Red Year, the Argonian Invasion of Morrowind, the Mede Dynasty, years before they were first introduced in-game in Skyrim. Though to be fair, Keyes does state in hte foreward that he worked closely with Bethesda to ensure the novels were accurate.

      So if anyone thinks Kirkbride's writtings aren't canon just because he's not with Bethesda anymore, that's false.

      I'm actually planning on writing a blog on why I don't think those books are canon. Since, I see a lot of lore errors in them. 

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    • Thanks for ignoring my post. :) I brought up two point you are yet to counter.

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    • Ika, are you talking to me? If so, there's no reason to be so defensive. I agree with a lot of what you said. But, at the same time, I do like to explain why I support and reject certain theorises and have rational discussions about it. 

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    • Draevan13 wrote:
      I'd just like to point out that Bethesda isn't against using outside writers to establish in-game canon. Take for example the two Elder Scrolls novels, Infernal City and Lord of Souls. Both were written by Greg Keyes, an author un-affiliated with Bethesda. Yet they used his novels as canon for Skyrim. His novels had the following in them: the Thalmor, the Red Year, the Argonian Invasion of Morrowind, the Mede Dynasty, years before they were first introduced in-game in Skyrim. Though to be fair, Keyes does state in hte foreward that he worked closely with Bethesda to ensure the novels were accurate.

      So if anyone thinks Kirkbride's writtings aren't canon just because he's not with Bethesda anymore, that's false.

      That settles it then.

      But what of C0DA? Can it be considered canon? Especially with the overlaping of the TES world and ours in such a ridiculous way. And the thing with the gods.

      And therefor i am asking myself: Can only parts of MK´s work be considered canon? Or is the motto everything or nothing?

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    • I'm actually planning on writing a blog on why I don't think those books are canon. Since, I see a lot of lore errors in them. 

      To what are you referring? I've read them several times and never noticed any.

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    • HahnDragoner523 wrote:
      Draevan13 wrote:
      I'd just like to point out that Bethesda isn't against using outside writers to establish in-game canon. Take for example the two Elder Scrolls novels, Infernal City and Lord of Souls. Both were written by Greg Keyes, an author un-affiliated with Bethesda. Yet they used his novels as canon for Skyrim. His novels had the following in them: the Thalmor, the Red Year, the Argonian Invasion of Morrowind, the Mede Dynasty, years before they were first introduced in-game in Skyrim. Though to be fair, Keyes does state in hte foreward that he worked closely with Bethesda to ensure the novels were accurate.

      So if anyone thinks Kirkbride's writtings aren't canon just because he's not with Bethesda anymore, that's false.

      That settles it then.

      But what of C0DA? Can it be considered canon? Especially with the overlaping of the TES world and ours in such a ridiculous way. And the thing with the gods.

      And therefor i am asking myself: Can only parts of MK´s work be considered canon? Or is the motto everything or nothing?


      May I ask what is so ridiculous about this?

      Tell me, what's more ridiculous: A guy shouting three words and destroying a city or mortals walking among gods and using advanced magi-tech?

      A person killing three gods with the aid of a prophecy or a planet destroyed by a meteorite?

      A giant robot breaking time or elves living in a moon?

      Define "ridiculous". In my opinion, MKs "ridiculousness" adds something to TES which no other fantasy world has: Uniqueness.

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    • Draevan13 wrote:

      I'm actually planning on writing a blog on why I don't think those books are canon. Since, I see a lot of lore errors in them. 

      To what are you referring? I've read them several times and never noticed any.

      I'll explain when I make it, let's get back on topic. 

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    • Ikabite
      Ikabite removed this reply because:
      Resolved, Off-Topic
      22:53, February 17, 2014
      This reply has been removed
    • Ikabite
      Ikabite removed this reply because:
      Off-Topic, should have been taken to talk page.
      22:53, February 17, 2014
      This reply has been removed
    • I personally think MK's writings are very well-thought-out hypotheses, meant to make you think. He wants you to wonder if they are true or not, and parts of them probably are true. But until we get actual confirmation of the truth, they will remain stories, and we will continue to wonder.

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    • AngryEnclaveSoldier wrote:
      HahnDragoner523 wrote:
      Draevan13 wrote:
      I'd just like to point out that Bethesda isn't against using outside writers to establish in-game canon. Take for example the two Elder Scrolls novels, Infernal City and Lord of Souls. Both were written by Greg Keyes, an author un-affiliated with Bethesda. Yet they used his novels as canon for Skyrim. His novels had the following in them: the Thalmor, the Red Year, the Argonian Invasion of Morrowind, the Mede Dynasty, years before they were first introduced in-game in Skyrim. Though to be fair, Keyes does state in hte foreward that he worked closely with Bethesda to ensure the novels were accurate.

      So if anyone thinks Kirkbride's writtings aren't canon just because he's not with Bethesda anymore, that's false.

      That settles it then.

      But what of C0DA? Can it be considered canon? Especially with the overlaping of the TES world and ours in such a ridiculous way. And the thing with the gods.

      And therefor i am asking myself: Can only parts of MK´s work be considered canon? Or is the motto everything or nothing?


      May I ask what is so ridiculous about this?

      Tell me, what's more ridiculous: A guy shouting three words and destroying a city or mortals walking among gods and using advanced magi-tech?

      A person killing three gods with the aid of a prophecy or a planet destroyed by a meteorite?

      A giant robot breaking time or elves living in a moon?

      Define "ridiculous". In my opinion, MKs "ridiculousness" adds something to TES which no other fantasy world has: Uniqueness.

      I agree but MK is overdoing it.

      What i meant was the whole thing with the Televisions and the whole superhero thing Vivec and co pulled towards the end.

      That´s just way over the top for me.

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    • The Ninja Khajiit wrote:
      I personally think MK's writings are very well-thought-out hypotheses, meant to make you think. He wants you to wonder if they are true or not, and parts of them probably are true. But until we get actual confirmation of the truth, they will remain stories, and we will continue to wonder.

      I agreed with the Ninja.

      If the truth weren't told, it will make the others putting interest into finding the truth.

      so people will be waiting for the upcoming series to find out more.

      and When the truth was officialy revealed in the game, then the thing that the Ninja Khajiit called 'well-thought-out hypotheses', will came out again. It will happen so on and 

      that's how game-profiting bussiness works. IMO

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    • I only accept MK's work as canon if it is actually referenced in the games, or acknoledged by Bethesda as canon. I do not think it is a blanket statement of "is MK's writings canon or not", that means that they are either accepted as a whole or denied as a whole. I've seen his work, and have seen plenty of reasons why Bethesda would accept some of it as canon and other parts as non-canon. I believe that labeling his work as either "completely canonical" or "completely non-canonical" is an enormous overgeneralization.

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    • Dark Jeto wrote:
      I only accept MK's work as canon if it is actually referenced in the games, or acknoledged by Bethesda as canon. I do not think it is a blanket statement of "is MK's writings canon or not", that means that they are either accepted as a whole or denied as a whole. I've seen his work, and have seen plenty of reasons why Bethesda would accept some of it as canon and other parts as non-canon. I believe that labeling his work as either "completely canonical" or "completely non-canonical" is an enormous overgeneralization.

      I agree. If it's shown in-game, i.e Heimskr's dialog, then I believe it's canon. If Bethesda references it, it's canon. If not, then no.

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    • Canon is what is confirmed in games, or in "officially" released materials.  Released by the Developers, not by an independent contractor.  

      Since a significant amount of TES Lore is written by MK, his writing does have great weight... but a lot of people seem to deify him, and take anything he puts out there set in the TES universe as instant caonon.   This is Inaccurate.  

      The Nu-Mantia intercepts, for example; In-game facts bear out and are in sync with them, so they can be treated as canonic.  However,  C0DA takes things beyond the point where Bethesda Developers would ever sensibly go with the series.  It is a fun story, and...certainly may in the future influence canon lore.   But it is not canon.  

      MK's work is not "mere fanfiction" since a large portion of in-game lore is written by him, but anything he produces independently should rather be regarded as pre-development work, conceptual.  It may or may not be correct as actual in-game lore.   

      If inormation from such material is used in the Wiki, it should be marked as potentially non-canonical.   

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    • 73.35.221.142 wrote:
      Canon is what is confirmed in games, or in "officially" released materials.  Released by the Developers, not by an independent contractor.  

      Since a significant amount of TES Lore is written by MK, his writing does have great weight... but a lot of people seem to deify him, and take anything he puts out there set in the TES universe as instant caonon.   This is Inaccurate.  

      The Nu-Mantia intercepts, for example; In-game facts bear out and are in sync with them, so they can be treated as canonic.  However,  C0DA takes things beyond the point where Bethesda Developers would ever sensibly go with the series.  It is a fun story, and...certainly may in the future influence canon lore.   But it is not canon.  

      MK's work is not "mere fanfiction" since a large portion of in-game lore is written by him, but anything he produces independently should rather be regarded as pre-development work, conceptual.  It may or may not be correct as actual in-game lore.   

      If inormation from such material is used in the Wiki, it should be marked as potentially non-canonical.   

      To be fair, MK still keeps in touch with some Bethesda developers (for obvious reasons) and some of Zenimax's, too, and they both enjoy C0DA. Besides, people often like to state that canon is only restricted to what is in the games, and the novels, but Bethesda have not exactly been vocal supporters of that, nor have they ever had any problems with lore being accepted from outside of the games. That is just a fan-made definition, ironicaly, due to the fact that a lot of series do that, but the influence on Bethesda, as you noted, is undeniable. Kirkbride came up with some rather major features in Skyrim, like the White-Gold Concordat, and the aesthetics of the province itself was inspired by the PGE (amongst other things like the Companions, Heimskr's speech from the Many Headed Talos, the Painted Cows being a referernce to the Seven Fights of the Aldudagga etc). Of course, we also have his in-game works from Morrowind and Oblivion (36 Lessons of Vivec, Mankar Camoran's Commentaries, the Arcturian Heresy). As the Prince-of-Plots well put it elsewhere, many fans do not care about what is 'canon', the quality of the lore is of the most importance, and fans are free to accept the lore they find interesting and engaging. A lot of the people who seem to be anti-Kirkbride generally have difficulty understanding of his works, and understandably decide to call out after hearing he is no longer an employee (which is common outside of TES, people disliking something because they do not understand it, just look at evolution and creationists). There is little reason, however, to ignore perfectly good and accepted lore just to stick to some dogmatic definition of canon.

      Much of that, barring the first sentence, was not aimed at you, they were just my thoughts on the matter, and neither am I saying that MK has to be accepted by everyone. I agree that included works outside of the games should be labelled for those wanting to ignore them, but my point is more that people should stop being so damaging and divise amongst the lore community by arguing over canon and telling people what they cannot follow MK's work (when people were still arguing over TESO, in addition to MK, it sparked the so called 'canon wars', and it would be nice if the lore community did not degenerate into such a bickering state again, rather than working together to make the most of the lore). 

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    • So to put it short: The answer to this thread is "Everybody can decide that for themselves"?

      I agree 100% with 73.35.

      But i also agree with King in the North.

      The question now is if Bethesda-unconfirmed MK-writings, such as C0DA, should be marked as non-canon lore in wiki. How do we treat that?

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    • HahnDragoner523 wrote:
      So to put it short: The answer to this thread is "Everybody can decide that for themselves"?

      I agree 100% with 73.35.

      But i also agree with King in the North.

      The question now is if Bethesda-unconfirmed MK-writings, such as C0DA, should be marked as non-canon lore in wiki. How do we treat that?

      I think they already do that. If you scrolls down to the 'References' secton on 'The Towers' page, for example, they make a note of that, saying: 

      'The following are out-of-game references. They are not found in any in-game books, but can still be considered part of The Elder Scrolls lore and are included for completeness.'

      Which I think is a good way of putting it. 

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    • Wow, it's been a while since I commented on this thread :P

      I forgot to bring up something regarding the two Elder Scrolls novels, Infernal Cities and Lord of Souls. There are two possibilites regarding them and both of which mean they're cannon. As I mentioned, the novels contain characters/plot points (the Thalmor, the Red Year, the Argonian Invasion of Morrowind, and the Mede Dynasty) despite it being published 2 years before Skyrim was released and they were first introduced in-game. This can only mean 2 things:

      1) Bethesda liked Keyes' writings so much they decided to incorporate them into their games, meaning they're canon.

      2) Bethesda flat out told him what was going to happen to make sure his novels followed their cannon, obviously meaning they're cannon. This seems the more likely of the two as he mentions working with Bethesda in the novels' forwards to ensure the accuracy of his novels.

      And, since all the points which first appeared in the 2 novels then appeared in Skyrim, the novels are in fact cannon, beyond any doubt. And considering this website has articles for the books; their characters and events, we here at the TES wiki consider them to be cannon.

      A bit off topic, I know, but I just wanted to clear this up. That's all.

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    • Draevan13 wrote:
      Wow, it's been a while since I commented on this thread :P

      I forgot to bring up something regarding the two Elder Scrolls novels, Infernal Cities and Lord of Souls. There are two possibilites regarding them and both of which mean they're cannon. As I mentioned, the novels contain characters/plot points (the Thalmor, the Red Year, the Argonian Invasion of Morrowind, and the Mede Dynasty) despite it being published 2 years before Skyrim was released and they were first introduced in-game. This can only mean 2 things:

      1) Bethesda liked Keyes' writings so much they decided to incorporate them into their games, meaning they're canon.

      2) Bethesda flat out told him what was going to happen to make sure his novels followed their cannon, obviously meaning they're cannon. This seems the more likely of the two as he mentions working with Bethesda in the novels' forwards to ensure the accuracy of his novels.

      And, since all the points which first appeared in the 2 novels then appeared in Skyrim, the novels are in fact cannon, beyond any doubt. And considering this website has articles for the books; their characters and events, we here at the TES wiki consider them to be cannon.

      A bit off topic, I know, but I just wanted to clear this up. That's all.

      The latter, predominantly. Greg Keyes confirmed that Bethesda did indeed make sure that the novel was lore friendly, and that he was constrained by needing to stick to the lore, but obviously some of his own flavour was present in the novel. In case you are interested, the interview is here: http://www.imperial-library.info/interviews-greg-keyes

      Besides, some of those ideas were made by others, anyway, like (as I think I may have mentioned before) the Third Aldmeri Dominion (Second, at the time, as this was before TESO) was envisioned by MK. 

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    • King in the North wrote:

      The latter, predominantly. Greg Keyes confirmed that Bethesda did indeed make sure that the novel was lore friendly, and that he was constrained by needing to stick to the lore, but obviously some of his own flavour was present in the novel. In case you are interested, the interview is here: http://www.imperial-library.info/interviews-greg-keyes

      Besides, some of those ideas were made by others, anyway, like (as I think I may have mentioned before) the Third Aldmeri Dominion (Second, at the time, as this was before TESO) was envisioned by MK. 

      Would you look at that. It says he wrote several storyline ideas and sent them to Bethesda for approval, and once they agreed on one then he started writing the novels. They're definitely canon if Bethesda had the final say in which storyline was written and Keyes was having it approved by Bethesda every so often during the writting process.

      Thanks for the link :D

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    • Draevan13 wrote:
      King in the North wrote:

      The latter, predominantly. Greg Keyes confirmed that Bethesda did indeed make sure that the novel was lore friendly, and that he was constrained by needing to stick to the lore, but obviously some of his own flavour was present in the novel. In case you are interested, the interview is here: http://www.imperial-library.info/interviews-greg-keyes

      Besides, some of those ideas were made by others, anyway, like (as I think I may have mentioned before) the Third Aldmeri Dominion (Second, at the time, as this was before TESO) was envisioned by MK. 

      Would you look at that. It says he wrote several storyline ideas and sent them to Bethesda for approval, and once they agreed on one then he started writing the novels. They're definitely canon if Bethesda had the final say in which storyline was written and Keyes was having it approved by Bethesda every so often during the writting process.

      Thanks for the link :D

      Indeed, it appears Bethesda already had a few directions they wanted to take after Oblivion. Of course, Keyes would have interjected some originality, but the novels are far from uncertified sources that some could perhaps fear would mess with the lore. I have never actually met anyone who does not think that the two novels are canon, though. They do have some rather interesting facts in them.

      And no problem. 

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    • Plus there's the obvious point: Elder Scrolls is a trademarked property. If Bethesda or Zenimax didn't like what he wrote or didn't want an Elder Scrolls novel written, he wouldn't have been allowed to publish it.

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