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The Mystery Behind Skyrim's Ebony Warrior

Skyrim remains an expansive, weird game even years after its initial release. Among the many mysteries of Skyrim, there's one connecting piece that could be the answer to fan's questions about continuity in the game. That's right, it's the Ebony Warrior, a powerful opponent that only appears to high level players with the Dragonborn DLC.


After reaching level 80, the Ebony Warrior might appear to request that players accompany him to Last Vigil, his camp northeast of Fort Greenwall and begin a quest with him. Well, sort of a quest. The Ebony Warrior wants the Dragonborn to kill him in a fight to the death at his camp in The Rift. It's an interesting way to get to know someone.

But who is the Ebony Warrior and how does he factor into the larger lore of the Elder Scrolls universe? While there's no one true answer to Ebony Warrior's identity, much like the game's Headless Horseman, there are plenty of interesting theories that explain the powerful foe's presence in Skyrim.

Dark armor isn't a complete answer

Skyrim has an intense amount of lore, but none of it covers the Ebony Warrior directly. One Reddit discussion asks if there's any actual lore in-game about the Ebony Warrior, but the answers are mixed. Reddit user Meeki comments that the Ebony Warrior seems like another player character, equally powerful at the end of the game. Another commenter, Tallunmapar, considers that the Ebony Warrior might be a reference to Morrowind's Gaenor, a rude ebony-armored fighter who demands money and exacts his revenge if the player character doesn't provide it.


One fan discussion speculates that the in-game god known as Reymon Ebonarm, the Black Knight, might be the Ebony Warrior — after all, they both favor dark armor. Skyrim lore writer Michael Kirkbride calls Ebonarm a "Yokudan deity" that opposes the demonic Daedra. Unfortunately, there are many characters that wear dark armor in the Elder Scrolls series, making it basically impossible to pin down the Warrior's identity to this specific deity.