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< Lore: Places: H
Type Settlement
Continent Tamriel
Province Black Marsh
Region Middle Argonia
Appears in Arena
Helstrom (Arena)
Map of Black Marsh
"You enter the city gates of Helstrom, noticing the dark looks the guards give you. They have a reputation of being very dangerous. Perhaps you can change that..." —In-game description in Arena

Helstrom is one of the eight major cities in the province of Black Marsh,[1] located in the impenetrable center called Middle Argonia. Many consider Helstrom the immortal capital of the Argonians.[2] Not only is it impossible to reach for any non-Argonians,[3] but the city itself is notorious for its perilous reputation; the city's guard is also reportedly dangerous.[4]

Layout and GeographyEdit

The Ancestor Lizard of Helstrom

The marsh of Helstrom is very dense and heavily consumed by Heart-Mud, which is reportedly very dark in color.[5] Some creatures in the region have their names attributed to the city, such as the Helstrom Ancestor Lizard, which some scholars speculated to be the progenitors of the Argonian race,[6] as well as the Helstrom Crocodile, an incredibly large variant that went extinct during the Great Burn of 1E 2828 in the Blackwater War. Their skulls were used by the Dead-Water Tribe as a trap for either animals or people.[7] Not much is known about the city at large, but its alleys are considered both wonderful and dangerous.[8] Helstrom is neighbored by several settlements, including Alten Markmont to the southeast, Greenspring to the southwest, and Tenmar Wall to the north.[1]

Notable LocalesEdit

  • Helstrom Palace[4]


Helstrom as a city has been reportedly active since at least the late First Era, concurrent to the Second Empire's invasion of Argonia, known as the Blackwater War.[9] The Battle of Argonia in 1E 2811 was a one-sided conflict between the Imperial Legion, who barely broke wind and the Argonians, who suffered severe casualties. The defending forces retreated to the interior of Black Marsh toward Helstrom, where the Empire was unable to follow, nor intended to lay siege. The Empire was content to the border and coastal regions, rather than the interior.[10] What followed after was the Blackwater War proper, where the Empire continued to press forward with their invasion by taking everything else before the Argonians could re-group.[9] By 1E 2837, the entire region was conquered by the Empire and formally founded as the Imperial Province of Black Marsh.[11]

Even though the interior region is inhospitable for non-Argonians, information about the city has escaped Middle Argonia and spread throughout the continent. This can be seen with the book called The Alik'r, which was written by the western scribe, Enric Milres in the Second Era.[8] Even though the Empire was more content with taking Black Marsh from across the borders and the coast, Helstrom later became a fully incorporated city-state of the Third Empire and settlements were built deep in the interior by the fourth century of the Third Era. During the Imperial Simulacrum in the late Third Era, the city-state of Helstrom was an active settlement. It was ruled by King Germanus and had a rivalry with Stormhold.[4]

Known RulersEdit



  • Arena was originally conceived as a fighting game featuring a tournament that took the player to each of Tamriel's cities to challenge different gladiatorial teams. According to a file from that stage of development left behind in the final game, Helstrom's gladiatorial team would have been called "the Pit Daemons".[UOL 1]
    • The Pit Daemons is one of three factions employed in the gladiatorial guild called the Circle of Champions. They were active all throughout Tamriel in the Second Era, in various major cities and landmarks across the provinces.[12]

See AlsoEdit


Note: The following references are considered to be unofficial sources. They are included to round off this article and may not be authoritative or conclusive.