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For other uses, see Esbern.
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"But... there is one they fear. In their tongue, he's 'Dovahkiin' - Dragonborn!"
―Esbern[src]

Esbern is an Elder Nord and one of the last remaining Blades, the powerful order of knights and warriors who served as bodyguards to the Septim Emperors, who were also known throughout Tamriel as the eyes and ears of the Emperors and Empresses.

BiographyEdit

Early lifeEdit

As one of the two last Blades, Esbern has been monitoring the ancient prophecies of Tamriel and had predicted the return of the dragons under Alduin, the Nordic God of Destruction whose return would lead to the destruction of Nirn. He also has the title of Blades Archivist and knows a great deal about the nature of the Dragon Crisis in Skyrim. He is closely associated with Delphine, another Blade operative. He is being persecuted and, therefore, is very cautious.

PresentEdit

Esbern is the guide, advisor, and mentor of the Dragonborn, the chosen one ordained to fight Alduin and his servants after the release of Alduin and the dragons back into Tamriel nearly two hundred years after the Oblivion Crisis.

InteractionsEdit

The option to recruit followers into the Blades is available through dialogue from Delphine after completion of "Alduin's Wall". After recruiting three followers, Esbern will offer an option to hunt dragons. After completing the first Dragon hunt, Esbern will exchange Esbern's Potion for one Dragon Bone and Dragon Scales. He will also provide the Dragonslayer's Blessing.

If Esbern's door in The Ratway Warrens is knocked on before the first quest involving him, he will say, "Go away! I'm very dangerous!"

A Cornered RatEdit

By reading the Thalmor Dossier, Delphine discovers the location of Esbern. She sends the Dragonborn to Riften, to uncover his location. The Dragonborn eventually discovers his whereabouts and takes him to Delphine.

Alduin's WallEdit

Delphine, Esbern, and the Dragonborn travel to the Sky Haven Temple, in which they find an Akaviri carving depicting the Prophecy of the Dragonborn and how to defeat Alduin.

Dragon HuntingEdit

After recruiting three new Blades members, Esbern will send the Dragonborn to kill a certain dragon, and the Dragonborn must take at least one of the Blades recruits with him. Once the dragon is dead, the Dragonborn can trade a Dragon Bone and a Dragon Scale for Esbern's Potion.

PaarthurnaxEdit

Esbern tells the Dragonborn that Paarthurnax must die for his past deeds in the Dragon War and his relationship with Alduin. Neither Esbern or Delphine will offer any further quests until this quest is done.

Multiple followersEdit

Main article: Multiple Followers

Esbern is one of the quest characters that can be exploited to be a follower throughout Skyrim along with another follower of choice. Esbern can wear "planted" apparel equipment during the quest "A Cornered Rat", but will unequip it if taken to Delphine at Riverwood and completing the quest. If Esbern is exploited as a follower during the quest, "Alduin's Wall", and the Dragonborn becomes a Werewolf, he will attack the Dragonborn on sight.

DialogueEdit

Show: A Cornered Rat
In the The Ratway Warrens:

"Go away!"

Esbern? Open the door. I'm a friend. "What?! No, that's not me. I'm not Esbern. I don't know what you're talking about."
It's okay. Delphine sent me. "Delphine? How do you... so you've finally found her, and she led you to me. And here I am, caught like a rat in a trap."
The Thalmor have found you. You need to get out of here. "Oh, how reassuring! Most likely you're with the Thalmor and this is just a trick to get me to open the door!"
Delphine needs your help to stop the dragons. (Persuade) "So Delphine keeps up the fight, after all these years. You'd better come in and tell me how you found me and what you want."
I'm the one the Blades have been searching for. I'm Dragonborn. "What's that you said? Dragonborn? Then... there really is hope after all? You'd better come inside. Quickly now, Thalmor agents have been seen in the Ratway."
There are Thalmor agents in the Ratway. Looking for you. "And no doubt you're one of them. Leave me alone!"
Delphine said to "remember the 30th of Frostfall." "Ah. Indeed, indeed. I do remember. Delphine really is alive, then? You'd better come in then and tell me how you found me and what you want."

While opening the door:

"This'll just take a moment..."
"This one always sticks... there we go."
"Only a couple more."
"There we are!"
"Come in, come in! Make yourself at home."
"That's better. Now we can talk."

After entering Esbern's home:

"So Delphine keeps up the fight, after all these years. I thought she'd have realised it's hopeless by now. I tried to tell her, years ago..."

The Thalmor have found you. We have to get out of here. "Yes, yes, so you said. But so what? The end is upon us. I may as well die here as anywhere else. I'm tired of running."
What do you mean, "the end is upon us"? "Haven't you figured it out yet? What more needs to happen before you all wake up and see what's going on? Alduin has returned, just like the prophecy said! The Dragon from the dawn of time, who devours the souls of the dead! No one can escape his hunger, here or in the afterlife! Alduin will devour all things and the world will end. Nothing can stop him. I tried to tell them. They wouldn't listen. Fools. It's all come true... all I could do was watch our doom approach..."
Alduin... the dragon who's raising the others? "Yes, yes! You see, you know but you refuse to understand! Oh, yes. It's all been foretold. The end has begun. Alduin has returned. Only a Dragonborn can stop him. But no Dragonborn has been known for centuries. It seems the gods have grown tired of us. They've left us to our fate, as the plaything of Alduin the World-Eater."
It's not hopeless, Esbern. I'm Dragonborn. "What? You're... can it really be true? Dragonborn? Then... then there is hope! The gods have not abandoned us! We must... we must... We must go, quickly now. Take me to Delphine. We have much to discuss."
You're talking about the literal end of the world? "Oh, yes. It's all been foretold. The end has begun. Alduin has returned. Only a Dragonborn can stop him. But no Dragonborn has been known for centuries. It seems the gods have grown tired of us. They've left us to our fate, as the plaything of Alduin the World-Eater."
What do you mean, "it's hopeless"? "Haven't you figured it out yet? What more needs to happen before you all wake up and see what's going on? Alduin has returned, just like the prophecy said! The Dragon from the dawn of time, who devours the souls of the dead! No one can escape his hunger, here or in the afterlife! Alduin will devour all things and the world will end. Nothing can stop him. I tried to tell them. They wouldn't listen. Fools. It's all come true... all I could do was watch our doom approach..."
Alduin... the dragon who's raising the others? "Yes, yes! You see, you know but you refuse to understand! Oh, yes. It's all been foretold. The end has begun. Alduin has returned. Only a Dragonborn can stop him. But no Dragonborn has been known for centuries. It seems the gods have grown tired of us. They've left us to our fate, as the plaything of Alduin the World-Eater."
You're talking about the literal end of the world? "Oh, yes. It's all been foretold. The end has begun. Alduin has returned. Only a Dragonborn can stop him. But no Dragonborn has been known for centuries. It seems the gods have grown tired of us. They've left us to our fate, as the plaything of Alduin the World-Eater."
It's not hopeless, Esbern. I'm Dragonborn. "What? You're... can it really be true? Dragonborn? Then... then there is hope! The gods have not abandoned us! We must... we must... We must go, quickly now. Take me to Delphine. We have much to discuss."

While packing his items:

"But, give me... just a moment... I must gather a few things..."
"I'll need this... No, no, useless trash... where'd I put my annotated Anuad?"
"One moment, I know time is of the essence, but mustn't leave secrets for the Thalmor... there's one more thing I must bring..."
"Well, I guess that's good enough... let's be off..."

If approached again:

"You'll have to speak up. I'm a little deaf in my right ear."

Wait here. "All right. Don't be long."
Follow me. "Good. We should keep moving."
Do you know the way out of here? "Yes, yes. We should proceed cautiously."
What's so important about me being Dragonborn? "Not yet, not yet. When we get to Riverwood... with Delphine... I'll tell you both then, when I've collected my thoughts. I never expected... well, suddenly here you are and now I'm too muddled to explain myself. I still need some time to get used to the idea that there might be hope after all."
Who are you? How do you know Delphine? "Hasn't she told you? We were both Blades, back when that still meant something. Now we're just fugitives from the Thalmor. I didn't know she was alive, but I'm not surprised. She was a survivor."
Why are the Thalmor so interested in finding you? "Well. They've been hunting down Blades since the Great War, on general principle. But if you mean me, now, in particular... maybe they've started to get an inkling of what the return of the dragons means. I don't suppose they want the world to end any more than we do. Or at least, they'd prefer it to end on their terms."
What happened on the 30th of Frostfall? "It was a cold day. The end of Frostfall is nearly winter in the Jerall Mountains. We heard the news at Cloud Ruler by courier, riding hard from the Imperial City. 30th of Frostfall, 171. Thirty years ago. The Great War started that day. The Thalmor ambassador his ultimatum to the Emperor Titus Mede: the heads of every Blades agent within the Aldmeri Dominion. I knew, that day, that it was truly the beginning of the end."

"We should keep moving."

Show: Alduin's Wall
In the Sleeping Giant Inn:

"I've told you where Sky Haven Temple is. I'll trust you to get us there in one piece."

I'll meet you at Karthspire. "Very good. I'll trust you to get there in one piece. Don't be long."
Tell me about Alduin's Wall. "Alduin's Wall was created by the ancient Akaviri Dragonguard, the forerunners of the Blades. One of the lost secrets of the Blades. Where they recorded all they knew of Alduin and his return. Part history, part prophecy. Its location was lost for centuries, but I know where it is: Sky Haven Temple, an ancient Blades sanctuary, hidden within the crags of the Reach."
How do we get to Sky Haven Temple? "Ah, yes. The entrance seems to be near to what's now known as the Karthspire. We'll have to see what we find when we arrive."
What's so important about me being Dragonborn? "It's the prophecy, don't you see? Only a Dragonborn can stop Alduin and avert the end of the world! But... I don't yet know how you can stop him. The prophecy doesn't say. But Alduin's Wall does. I hope."

"Very good."

At the Karthspire:

"Are you sure this is the right way?"

How do we find the entrance to Sky Haven Temple? "We should be careful. There's no telling what traps and wards the ancient Blades may have set."

"We'd best be careful in here."

At the bridge in the Karthspire:

"Yes, that's it. The symbol on the middle (Or "left" if the Dragonborn symbol appears on the left pillar first.) pillar."

At the Blood Seal:

"Wonderful! Remarkably well preserved, too. Ah... here's the "blood seal." Another of the lost Akaviri arts. No doubt triggered by... well, blood. Your blood, Dragonborn. Look here! You see how the ancient Blades revered Reman Cyrodiil. This whole place appears to be a shrine to Reman. He ended the Akaviri invasion under mysterious circumstances, you recall. After the so-called "battle" of Pale Pass, the Akaviri went into his service. This was the foundation stone of the Second Empire."

After unsealing the blood seal:

"There's no telling what we might find inside!"

Inside Sky Haven Temple:

"Isn't it amazing?"

I just want to know how to defeat Alduin. "Ah. Of course. Not everyone has an appreciation for the artistic wonders of the world. Let me see if I can find the right panel..."
It is. Carry on. "Ah. Thank you! Excellent. Now... where were we?"

If approached after reading Alduin's Wall:

"Did you need something?"

What's so important about me being Dragonborn? "Haven't you been paying attention to anything I've said? Only you can finally defeat Alduin and avert the end of the world! If we can just find out what Shout the ancient Nords used, you may have a chance. Or not. There's no gaurantee with prophecy. Merely hope."
Any advice for fighting Dragons? "You're in luck. There is a blessing the Blades used on the eve of battle. It's supposed to prepare the mind for slaying dragons. I doubt the blessing's effects last for very long, so ask whenever you're heading out, and I'll perform the proper rites."
I need that dragon slaying blessing. ""May the scales of the dragonkind splinter at the touch of your arrows, and crack under the weight of your sword." That's all there is to it, Dragonborn. Good luck."

"Goodbye then"

Show: Elder Knowledge
In Sky Haven Temple:

"You'll have to speak up. I'm a little deaf in my right ear."

Any idea where to find the Elder Scroll? "Do you know the College of Winterhold? They have a deep interest in such arcana."
Show: Rebuilding the Blades
In Sky Haven Temple:
Delphine mentioned you're studying dragon lairs. "I am. The Blades of the 2nd Era hunted down many dragons in their day, and they have records of where the beasts lived. Only you can truly defeat these monsters, Dragonborn, but you do not have to do so alone. The Blades can help you. Just ask whenever you're ready to take on a dragon. We will send the Blades to help you fulfill your destiny."
Show: Dragon Research
In Sky Haven Temple:
Find any dragons to hunt? "I have. One of the old Akaviri records names a dragon living nearby. Shall we send the Blades to help you?"
I'm not ready yet. "Let me know when you are, then."
Tell them to meet me there. "Good luck, Dragonborn."
The dragon of <dragon lair> is dead. "It's good to see the Blades fighting alongside the Dragonborn once again. To think we're treading in the footsteps of thousands of years past. While you're out hunting, keep a sharp eye open for any dragon scales and bones you might find. I'd be interested in looking at them."
Here's a dragon scale and a bone. "Have you ever heard of the expression, "the scale of the Argonian that bit you?" No, I guess not. Well, the principle applies here. It's a potion, made from those dragon parts. Give it a try."
Show: Dragon Hunting
In Sky Haven Temple:
Find any dragons to hunt? "It's quiet for now, Dragonborn. Perhaps later we'll find where one of those serpents is hiding."
or
"I have. One of the old Akaviri records names a dragon living nearby. Shall we send the Blades to help you?"
I'm not ready yet. "Let me know when you are, then."
Tell them to meet me there. "Good luck, Dragonborn."
The dragon of <dragon lair> is dead. "Good. The dragon's soul should be making you stronger. Come back another time, and we'll track down another one for you."
Show: Paarthurnax
In Sky Haven Temple:

"I'm afraid there's a further problem. A serious one. I've discovered who the Greybeards' leader really is."

You know... what? "He's a dragon. Not just any dragon, but the right hand of Alduin, responsible for many atrocities during the ancient Dragon War."
Turns out he's a dragon. But he helped me. "All well and good. But did you know that he was Alduin's chief lieutenant in ancient times? Responsible for terrible atrocities? It's true that his crimes are long in the past, but justice does not count the passage of years."

"The Blades have been hunting him for centuries, but he was protected by the Greybeards and then the Emperors. Justice demands that he die for his crimes. Until he is dead, I'm afraid my oath as a Blade prevents me from offering you aid and comfort."

Why does he need to die? "Paarthurnax was the author of many atrocities during the Dragon War - crimes great enough to be remembered for thousands of years. True, he turned traitor to Alduin and helped overthrow the Dragon Cult, but that does not excuse or expiate his previous deeds. Whether or not he has truly repented, or merely acted to save himself, justice demands that he pay with his life."
About Paarthurnax. "Justice can be harsh. But it is still justice. Paarthurnax deserves to die."

(If Dragonslayer is completed):
Esbern: "You've done it... Just as the prophecy said... I knew you could do it... I believed in you, and yet... I still didn't think I'd live to see this day. Thank you. Thank you, Dragonborn. You've done a great service for us all."
Delphine: "There's still the matter of Paarthurnax. I'm not ungrateful for what you've done. Esbern speaks for both of us. But our oath as Blades binds us. Paarthurnax must die. There's no excuse now that Alduin is dead."
Esbern: "I'm afraid she's right. I'm deeply sorry this has to come between us. But just as Paarthurnax's later deeds does not expiate his crimes, your deeds do not allow us to ignore our duty. I hope you will return to us soon with the news that justice has finally been done. With both Alduin and Paarthurnax dead, a dark chapter in history will finally be closed."


If the quest is not complete:
"I wish there were another way, Dragonborn, but it falls to you to serve justice upon Paarthurnax."


If the quest is completed:

It's done. Paarthurnax is dead. "At long last. An ancient evil is avenged. The shades of many Blades salute you this day."

ConversationsEdit

Esbern's returnEdit

Esbern: "Delphine! I... it's good to see you. It's been... a long time."
Delphine: "It's good to see you, too, Esbern. It's been too long, old friend. Too long. Well, then. You made it, safe and sound. Good. Come on, I have a place we can talk."
Delphine: "Orgnar, hold down the bar for a minute, will you?"
Orgnar: "Yeah, sure."

Annals of the DragonguardEdit

Delphine: "Now then. I assume you know about..."
Esbern: "Oh yes! Dragonborn! Indeed, yes. This changes everything, of course. There's no time to lose. We must locate... let me show you. I know I had it here, somewhere..."
Delphine: "Esbern, what..."
Esbern: "Give me... just a moment... Ah! Here it is. Come, let me show you. You see, right here. Sky Haven Temple, constructed around one of the main Akaviri military camps in the Reach, during their conquest of Skyrim."
Delphine: "Do you (To the Dragonborn) know what he's talking about?"
Esbern: "Shh! This is where they built Alduin's Wall, to set down in stone all their accumulated dragonlore. A hedge against the forgetfulness of centuries. A wise and foresighted policy, in the event. Despite the far-reaching fame of Alduin's Wall at the time - one of the wonders of the ancient world - its location was lost."
Delphine: "Esbern. What are you getting at?"
Esbern: "You mean... you don't mean to say you haven't heard of Alduin's Wall? Either of you?"
Delphine: "Let's pretend we haven't. What's Alduin's Wall and what does it have to do with stopping the dragons?"
Esbern: "Alduin's Wall was where the ancient Blades recorded all they knew of Alduin and his return. Part history, part prophecy. Its location has been lost for centuries, but I've found it again. Not lost, you see, just forgotten. The Blades archives held so many secrets... I was only able to save a few scraps..."
Delphine: "So you think that Alduin's Wall will tell us how to defeat Alduin?"
Esbern: "Well, yes, but... there's no guarantee, of course."
Delphine: "Sky Haven Temple it is, then. I knew you'd have something for us, Esbern."

The KarthspireEdit

Delphine: "This looks promising."
Esbern: "Yes. Definitely early Akaviri stonework here."
Delphine: "We've got to get this bridge down. These pillars must have something to do with it."
Esbern: "Yes. These are Akaviri symbols. Let's see... you have the symbol for "King"... and "Warrior"... And of course the symbol for "Dragonborn." That's the one that appears to have a sort of arrow shape pointing downward at the bottom."

Pressure platesEdit

Esbern: "Wait."
Delphine: "Why are you stopping?"
Esbern: "We should be careful here. See these symbols on the floor?"
Delphine: (To the Dragonborn)"Hmm, Esbern's right. Looks like pressure plates."
Esbern: "Be careful."
(After securing the area)
Delphine: "Looks safe now. Let's move."
Esbern: "Yes, yes! I think we must be close to the entrance."

Bas reliefsEdit

Esbern: "Fascinating! Original Akaviri bas reliefs... almost entirely intact! Amazing... you can see how the Akaviri craftsmen were beginning to embrace the more flowing Nordic style..."
Delphine: "We're here for Alduin's Wall, right, Esbern?"
Esbern: "Yes, of course. We'll have more time to look around later, I suppose. Let's see what's up ahead."

Alduin's WallEdit

Esbern: "Shor's bones! Here it is! Alduin's Wall... so well preserved... I've never seen a finer example of early second era Akaviri sculptural relief..."
Delphine: "Esbern. We need information, not a lecture on art history."
Esbern: "Yes, yes. Let's see what we have... Look, here is Alduin! This panel goes back to the beginning of time, when Alduin and the Dragon Cult ruled over Skyrim. Here the humans rebel against their dragon overlords -- the legendary Dragon War. Alduin's defeat is the centerpiece of the Wall. You see, here he is falling from the Sky. The Nord Tongues -- masters of the Voice -- are arrayed against him."
Delphine: "So, does it show how they defeated him? Isn't that why we're here?"
Esbern: "Patience, my dear. The Akaviri were not a straightforward people. Everything is couched in allegory and mythic symbolism. Yes, yes. This here, coming from the mouths of the Nord heroes -- this is the Akaviri symbol for "Shout.""
Delphine: "You mean they used a shout to defeat Alduin? You're sure?"
Esbern: "Hmm? Oh, yes. Presumably something rather specific to dragons, or even Alduin himself. Remember, this is where they recorded all they knew of Alduin and his return."
Delphine: "So we're looking for a Shout, then. Damn it."
Esbern: "Look, here. In the third panel. The prophecy which brought the Akaviri to Tamriel in the first place, in search of the Dragonborn. Here are the Akaviri - the Blades - you see their distinctive longswords. Now they kneel, their ancient mission fulfilled, as the Last Dragonborn contends with Alduin at the end of time. Are you paying attention, Delphine? You might learn something of our own history. I know the prophecy by heart. Once all Blades knew it.
'When mirule takes its place at the eight corners of the world'
'When the Brass Tower walks and Time is reshaped'
'When the thrice-blessed fail and the Red Tower trembles'
'When the Dragonborn Ruler loses his throne, and the White Tower falls'
'When the Snow Tower lies sundered, kingless, bleeding'
'The World-Eater wakes, and the Wheel turns upon the Last Dragonborn.'
Delphine: "Well, I'm going to look around some more. See what the Blades left for us."
Esbern: "Yes... yes, that's an excellent idea. Who knows what lost treasures we might discover?"

QuotesEdit

  • "I told you to go away. I'm not opening this door for anybody!"
  • "Seems I still remember my old training."
  • "Thalmor dog! Death is too good for you!"
  • "Patience. Give me a moment and I'll explain everything"
  • "I used to dream of it. In the dream, I was standing… someplace high up… a tower, or a mountain. It was always just before dawn. The whole world was in darkness. Then came the flash of light – just on the horizon, within the clouds that mark the border between worlds. It could have been lightning, but there was no thunder. In the dream, the sense of foreboding grew, but I could never wake up. Then it came again, this time more distinct. Closer. Definitely not lightning now. It was orange – brilliant orange, the color of hearth and dawn. And a sound, too. Distinct and indistinct. Not thunder… something else. Something I should recognize, but in the dream I cannot place it. I want to leave my high place, to seek shelter. From what, I don’t yet know. In the manner of dreams, I cannot escape. I’m forced to wait and watch. Then, finally, realization and horror arrive together. The orange is flame, heat. The sound a roar, a challenge in their ancient tongue. But now it’s too late for escape. The dragon is upon me – fire and darkness descending like a thunderbolt. And not just any dragon, but the Dragon – Alduin, the World-Eater, the dragon who devours both the living and the dead. And then I would wake up. And hope that it was just a dream… but know that it was not."

TriviaEdit

  • In Bethesda Softworks' Skyrim, Esbern is voiced by the Swedish actor Max von Sydow. He is famed for his acting in movies such as The Seventh Seal, The Exorcist, Minority Report, Flash Gordon, Robin Hood, Conan the Barbarian, Shutter Island, Strange Brew, with roles in Star Wars VII and Game of Thrones. In the trailer, Max von Sydow voiced Esbern as the narrator.

BugsEdit

This section contains bugs related to Esbern (Skyrim). Before adding a bug to this list, consider the following:

  1. Please reload an old save to confirm if the bug is still happening.
  2. If the bug is still occurring, please post the bug report with the appropriate system template  360  / XB1  ,  PS3  / PS4  ,  PC  / MAC  ,  NX  , depending on which platform(s) the bug has been encountered on.
  3. Be descriptive when listing the bug and fixes, but avoid having conversations in the description and/or using first-person-anecdotes: such discussions belong on the appropriate forum board.
Click to show
Note: Many Esbern-related bugs can be fixed by quick saving then quick loading.
  • During the quest "A Cornered Rat", Esbern may appear to be in Sky Haven Temple when the Dragonborn looks at their map to fast travel. If the Dragonborn goes to Sky Haven Temple to investigate this, Esbern may look as though he is behind the hidden door in the chamber.
    • This can be fixed by reloading a save from before getting the quest "A Cornered Rat".
  • For many, Esbern will be severely glitched. His sound files may not play, which leads to him standing in silence. As a consequence, it is impossible to proceed in the quest "A Cornered Rat".
    •  PC   Two ways to try to fix this include (both do not need to be done):
      •  Unpack the Skyrim - Voice Extra.bsa files into the data folder, or download it already unpacked here. Unzip the contents and place them in the data folder.
      • Navigate toC:\Users\Name\Documents\My Games\Skyrim and open the file SkyrimEditor.ini with notepad. At the very end of the file, add the following text and save the file.
sResourceArchiveList=Skyrim - Misc.bsa, Skyrim - Shaders.bsa, Skyrim - Textures.bsa, Skyrim - Interface.bsa, Skyrim - Animations.bsa, Skyrim - Meshes.bsa, Skyrim - Sounds.bsa
sResourceArchiveList2=Skyrim - Voices.bsa, Skyrim - VoicesExtra.bsa
  •  PC   Even when he is talking properly, his door will sometimes not open.
    • This can be fixed by opening the console and typing setstage MQ202 160 and hit enter or renter the room once more to open the door as well. This will open his door and allow action to proceed.
    • The door can also be disabled with the console by clicking it, then typing the command disable. It may be necessary to attack Esbern before being able to speak with him.
  • Sometimes Esbern may disappear.
    •  PC   He can be found by typing the console command player.moveto 00019DFD, which will teleport the Dragonborn to him. If he continues to walk again in a different direction, waiting for an hour and typing the command again should meet him in Riverwood. Talking to Delphine allows the quest to be continued.
  •  PS3   If accessing his underground home in the Ratway Warrens, the hole through his door allows one attack that will successfully land, which is the Unrelenting Force shout. Upon doing this, a 40 bounty will be acquired, but if the hole closes, the message "Last Witness Killed. 40 bounty removed" is displayed.
  •  PC   Esbern may not speak after he opens the door, or the conversation just does not start.
    • This can be resolved by stepping into Esbern's room and standing so that the door is on the other side of him, then speaking to him again.
  • When dragon hunting after recruiting three followers into the Blades, he may only say, "do you need something?" No other conversation options will be available.
  •  PC   Esbern will sometimes randomly go missing.
  • Esbern may attack for no reason.
  • After combat, when all enemies are killed, sometimes a conjured Atronach will start attacking Esbern. Less frequently, Esbern and a regular follower may also start fighting each other.
  • He may stay still in the battle pose.
    • This can be fixed by talking to Esbern and choosing the 'wait here' option. Upon entering the next "cell," he will follow again.
  •  PC   360   PS3   The miscellaneous quest where parts of a dragon can be exchanged for him to make a potion may not work. While the game guide says that the "dragon infusion" perk will be received, it is not received and the quest to bring him the parts is left in the journal without being able to give him any parts to make another potion.
    • On PC the perk can be obtained manually through the console command player.addperk 000E6DF0. The quest will still appear in the journal.
  • Esbern may randomly appear in some towns after the main quest is finished, such as Karthwasten.
  • At some point after completing "Alduin's Wall", fast traveling may cause Esbern to appear. He appears in the doorway at the arrival point, asks "Yes, what is it?" or says, "You'll have to speak up, I'm a little deaf in my right ear." then walks away.
    •  PC   This can be resolved by killing him, then respawning him using console commands. A command that allows the killing of essential characters will be required.
    • Alternatively, completing a dungeon or a mission without fast traveling for long enough for him to return to Sky Haven Temple will cause him to stay there.
  • Sometimes the quest to bring a dragon bone and a dragon scale to Esbern may stay in journal after complete.
    • This bug can be fixed with the console command: SetObjectiveCompleted FreeFormSkyHavenTempleD 10 1
  •  PC   360   After bringing three recruits to Delphine and then talking to Esbern about the dragon lairs as she requested, he sometimes just stands there and only has generic dialogue (e.g. "What is it?", "Do you need something?").
  • Even in Sky Haven Temple, attacking him may add a bounty in the Rift.
  • Esbern will sometimes just stand there as if he has been commanded to stay.
    • This can be fixed by asking him to wait and then immediately asking him to follow.
  •  360   Esbern has also been seen to be walking around Solstheim in Dragonborn.
  •  360   Sometimes if a quest is completed for him he does not notice. Upon returning to him, he acts like he didn't give a quest.
  • Occasionally, if a dragon is killed at a dragon lair, the miscellaneous quest "Return to Esbern" may appear, even if he has not been spoken to about any dragon lair locations, or if the Paarthurnax quest has not been completed. Speaking to him will only yield his generic dialogue ("Yes?," "What is it?," "Do you need something").

AppearancesEdit

Start a Discussion Discussions about Esbern (Skyrim)

  • Alduin's Wall Bug

    2 messages
    • I'm playing on XBox and am currently on the Alduin's Wall quest. Esbern has been missing for several in game days. I've tr...
    • I'm having the same issue on pc.
  • Alduin's wall bug

    12 messages
    • What if the quest is finished, Delphine said to talk with Arngeir, but the new quest does not start? Arngeir does not have anything new to say either.
    • You'll have to reload a save before ending the last quest.