Classes are vocations, jobs, or professions taken by persons in The Elder Scrolls universe. The protagonist of each game selects their class during character creation. Certain elements such as race impact class selection, due to the skill set defaulted by each class. For example, Altmer gain bonuses to magic-based skills, making them better suited for the mage class than other races. Each character class features a specialization, several major skills, and an increase in attributes at level up.
Multiple pre-made classes can be chosen from a list, or a custom class can be created. Players uncertain about which class to take may have the option to take a brief test, which allows an NPC to select a class for them based on their answers. This option was first seen in The Elder Scrolls II: Daggerfall and carried over to The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, with Baurus's recommendation during the tutorial. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, unlike all titles before it, eradicated the class-structure in favor of more open-ended character customization through the allocation of perks.
A character can specialize in Stealth, Combat or Magic.
- Stealth: Characters specializing in Stealth will have increased skill levels in Acrobatics, Light Armor, Marksman, Mercantile, Security, Sneak and Speechcraft. The governing attributes for Stealth characters are Agility and Speed.
- Combat: Characters specializing in Combat will have increased skill levels in Armorer, Athletics, Blade, Block, Blunt, Hand-to-Hand and Heavy Armor. The governing attributes for Combat characters are Strength and Endurance.
- Magic: Characters specializing in Magic will have increased skill levels in Alchemy, Alteration, Conjuration, Destruction, Illusion, Mysticism and Restoration. The governing attributes for Mage characters are Intelligence and Willpower.
A player can create a custom class by selecting the specialization (Combat, Magic,Stealth), the two main attributes, and seven skills. The player may name the class whatever he/she wants and assign any skills/attributes to it. The most common mixed classes are the Battlemage and the Stealthmage. These are mixes between the Warrior and the Mage class, and the Stealth and the Mage class. Stealth - Warrior classes are quite rare.