The storyline of Elder Scrolls Online takes place in the year 2E 583 otherwise known as The Interregnum. The Interregnum began in year 2E 430 when the Akaviri Potentates and all the heirs where assassinated. After the destruction of any authority in the Empire, all of Tamriel fell into disarray and multiple kingdoms formed and warred with each other. Roads and buildings fell into disrepair, the quality life was declining, and even the Amulet of Kings was lost somewhere on Tamriel. Fast forwarding ahead a few hundred years in the year 2E 854 Tiber Septim was crowned Emperor signaling the start of the Tiber Wars to reunite Tamriel. In year 2E 896 Tiber Septim declared the beginning of Third Era at the end of the year. But wait..what happened between 2E 583 and the following three hundred years?
Read on to find out….
“Before Ysgramor led the Nord people south, our ancestors flourished in the frozen continent of Atmora, and to this day our people prefer the bitter climes of northern Tamriel. The Dark Elves abide in Morrowind, a harsh land of ashfall and perpetual earthquakes. The Argonians endure the treacherous and impenetrable depths of Black Marsh. The alliance between our races was born in dark times, when Nord, Dunmer and free Argonians fought as one to repel the invasion of the Akaviri slavemasters. Our greatest strength is the adversity we have overcome. Our resolve is glacial, our might is forged in fire, and our courage, cultivated by the beasts of the jungle. We are Ebonheart. We are as one. And by this, our victory is assured.”
―Jorunn the Skald-King
The Interregnum was a period of time in the Elder Scrolls universe where it very little recorded history and that is when Elder Scrolls Online will take place. During the unrecorded years of history during The Interregnum three prominent faction rose up from the chaos. The first Aldmeri Dominion, The Daggerfall Covenant, and The Ebonheart Pact. Each faction creating unlikely alliances with survival and domination in mind.
The Ebonheart Pact, perhaps the most unlikely of alliances, was composed of Nords from Skyrim, Dunmer from Morrowind, and Argonians from Blackmarsh. Originally the Pact was formed to fight off the invading forces of the Akaviri invaders and then later on to defend against the forces of Molag Bal, an alliance of mutual defense. The Daggerfall Covenant was composed of Bretons from Highrock, Orcs from Orsinium, and Redguard from Hammerfell. The Daggerfall Covenant saw itself as the successors of the Remen Dynasty which was before the Akaviri Potentates who took control of the Empire in year 1E 2980. The Covenants goal was to secure the Ruby Throne and bring back the true ruler of the Empire. Finally the Almeri Dominion, the members included the High Elves of Summerset Isles, the Bosmer of Valenwood, and the Khajiit of Elsweyr. Queen Ayrenn formed the first Aldmeri Dominion after traveling all across Tamriel and witnessed what utter chaos the world was in. She saw this as the time for the elves to rule the whole of Tamriel once again and to fix the mess the younger races have created. To take the Ruby Throne and have elves rule once again was the goal for the first Aldmeri Dominion. And so it was these three prominent factions that rose up amidst the chaos of The Interregnum and began to war for the Ruby Throne and more importantly for survival.
“The Imperial Throne sits empty.
The Dragonfires cold; unlit.
And from every corner, darkness grows.
Now, ancient enemies band together.
Unlikely alliances are forged.
Old ambitions rekindled.
And as enemies rise faster than allies,
salvation cannot come from one hero alone,
but from many.”
In the year of 2E 578 an event occurred called The Soulburst. This event took place when an Altmer mage named Mannimarco betrayed Varen Aquilarios. Varen entrusted Mannimarco with a ritual involving the Amulet of Kings to turn Varen into a true Dragonborn. However, Mannimarco betrayed Varen and broke the ancient pact with Akatosh that separated Nirn from Oblivion. When the corrupted ritual took place, there was a gigantic burst of energy that caused Varen to vanish and sent out shock waves throughout Nirn. These shock waves caused magi and sorcerers to go mad and Daedra began appearing in larger numbers.
With the Amulet of Kings lost and no true ruler on the Ruby Throne, Molag Bal the Daedric Prince of rape, domination and the enslavement of mortals, attempted to pull Tamriel into his world of Coldharbour. Amidst the chaos of The Interregnum Molag Bal’s forces began to invade, striking out hard at the heart of Tamriel and sacking the Imperial City. All across Tamriel cultists performed dark rituals to summon Molag Bal’s minions into this world to further add to the chaos.
And so begins the timeline of Elder Scrolls Online where chaos and strife is around the whole of Tamriel…
Source: Unofficial Elder Scrolls Pages