Elder Scrolls: Blades Beginner’s Tips Guide – Learning the Basics!

Here are some tips to help up your game in Elder Scrolls: Blades!

Our Elder Scrolls: Blades Tips Guide features a bunch of information to get you started in your early days of this new game! As you start rebuilding your town, you'll no doubt come up with some questions that could use answering. Hopefully, these tips will help answer some of them for you.

Elder Scrolls: Blades is a pretty interesting action RPG that has you looting dungeons, questing, and rebuilding a town. This gets pretty detailed, so it's important to know what's going on early in the game before you get too deep into it.

Blades General Tips

  • The help menu that you can find within the main menu is pretty helpful with some stuff that isn't directly explained. Hit the ? icon to learn more about a variety of different things.
  • Don't purchase too much armor and weapons early on. You will likely be swapping out pieces quite a bit while you level up initially, it's better to save your resources for future things.
  • Make sure to repair your armor and weapons! Your stuff degrades as you use it in dungeons, so don't forget to repair before you go out hunting again.
  • Check your challenges every hour or so and see what you can complete. This is an easy way to make some gold on the side, it's usually stuff like dealing damage and performing combos.
  • Leveling up your town is pretty important. The fastest way to do this is to build buildings like the Smithy, Alchemist, Enchanter, and so on. You can build two of each of these, but I'd start with two Smithy because they give you a lot of XP towards your town. Don't start building houses, dwellings, and homesteads until you've run out of other things to build (at least one of each of the major crafting buildings).
  • Build your major crafting areas closer to where you spawn in the initial part of your town. You'll be bouncing around this area the most, so it's best not to bury the important buildings further away from where you spawn in town.
  • When you are opening a Wooden Chest be careful how quickly you tap on the open button. It only takes 5 seconds to open, but you can spend 1 Gem to open it quicker for some reason. If you tap too fast, you might accidentally burn a Gem on this.

Blades Fighting Tips

  • When you are holding to attack, release or swipe only when the circle is full to get a critical hit. You will want to try to get good with this so you are hitting consistently big damage strikes.
  • Use your shield! Block an incoming attack by press and holding the shield icon, and then fire off an attack of your own. Your enemy will sometimes stagger when they run into your shield.
    • You will want to wait for your enemy to just about attack before raising your shield. For a short period you will be "blocking high" and after a certain amount of time of holding your shield up you will "block low." Blocking high protects you better, and you have the chance to stagger the enemy.
  • You can also block with your weapons if you don't have a shield. Each weapon has a Block Rating, and heavier weapons (two handers) have the highest rating which makes them the best for blocking attacks. Weapons use the same "blocking high" mechanic as shields.
  • Do not attack if your enemy is holding their shield up. You can be staggered just like your enemy. Wait a bit if they continue to hold their shield so you hit them when they are blocking low.
  • Higher level enemies will deal damage through your block, so be careful when blocking too much against tougher foes!
  • If you are fighting an animal, you can only hit them when they are lunging in to attack. They are too far away otherwise if you are using a melee weapon.
    • Spells are really good for taking out animals since they can hit further away.
  • Combos can be performed by swinging your weapon from one side, and then making your next swing from the other side. You can repeat this to continue the combo.
    • You can either hold and swipe left then hold and swipe right and repeat, or you can tap hold on one side, then tap hold on the other side and repeat.
  • Some enemies have resistances or are weak to certain physical and magic types. So, if you are fighting tougher enemies, make sure to switch to the right tool or spell for the job.
    • Daggers deal slashing damage, Axes deal cleaving damage, and Hammers and Maces deal bashing damage.
  • Consider getting the Absorb spell even if your character isn't focused on magic. You can use it to heal yourself without wasting an item.
  • Adrenaline Dodge is another very solid ability that you get a bit further into the game that will heal you up when you use it.
  • Don't use your healing potions unless you absolutely have to. There's usually food around that can heal you up in most dungeons. Save these for very hard quests and deeper parts of the Abyss. You can craft healing potions at the Alchemy Laboratory once you've put one in your town, although they do use pretty hard to find ingredients.

Blades Dungeon Tips

  • Don't immediately eat every bit of food that's not nailed down. The food heals you up, but if you are very near full health it's just a waste. Leave it alone and come back for it if you need some health.
  • Explore around the dungeon looking for anything that's flashing. Pick up everything, that especially includes any rare ingredients.
  • You can actively avoid fights if you move around the enemy and don't get too close. This can be helpful if you are low on health.
  • Once you finish the dungeon/quest, make sure to explore around before completing it. There's usually a bit more to see and some items that might be lurking around a corner you might have missed.
  • Keep an eye out for secret areas. There's one early on where you come to a closed off hut. You can tap on a nearby totem (it's a pole in the ground with a skull on top of it), and it will open up the door to the hut. If you go inside you can find yourself a chest!

Blades Chest Tips

  • Do NOT start opening a chest that will take hours to open while you are actively playing the game. You can only open one chest at a time, and you will likely be getting chests you can open pretty much instantly if you are actively playing. Open those while you play, and once you are done then you should queue up one of the longer opening chests.
  • If you are hitting the chest capacity often, it is relatively cheap to upgrade your capacity with gems. It only costs 10 gems for +10 additional slots, and this is probably worth it. You don't have to spend money on the game to gain gems.
  • Silver Chests are a bit of a problem in this game. They take a long time to open, so you are actually better off maxing out your chests with a bunch of wood, a few silver, and then some gold if you can find them. You can then do jobs, and when you find a wooden chest in the wild, you should open one of the ones you have in your inventory and then pick that one up. Once you get to the end of the job, you can discard the silver chest that's rewarded to you. This way you can open up chests to grind out materials, but you won't get inundated with silver chests that take forever to open.

Blades Store, Gems, & Gold Tips

  • Gold is pretty readily available, so don't feel like you need to hoard and save it for some specific thing.
  • Gems are harder to come by, but you can collect them just by playing. Gems can be obtained by leveling up, dropped in dungeons from enemies and chests, and collected by completing quests.
  • Make sure to check the store each day, they offer a free item each day so be sure to take advantage of it!
  • Gems should be saved for the most part, I would not waste them on chests or speeding up crafting. The best thing to use them for is to get resources. There will be multiple times when you level up that the game offers you a bundle that can be purchased with Gems that will give you guaranteed resources. The most important of these are the limited time Imperial Shipment Offers. These include a full batch of different materials, and will allow you to build up your town a lot quicker. If you're going to spend money on the game, it's best to use it for these.
  • The other thing I would consider using Gems on is expanding your chest and item inventories. These are relatively cheap, so I wouldn't sweat using some of the Gems you get in game to upgrade them.
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About the Author

Shaun aka Evident is a lifelong gamer and creator of websites. He mostly focuses on shooters, but has been known to dabble in the occasional card game as well. You can find him binge watching TV shows in his downtime.

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  1. My “Quick Strikes” are greyed out during fights. The “Details” don’t specify that you can only use them with some weapons so they should be there regardless of the weapon. Any ideas?

    1. Quick strikes are best for 1 handed light weapons as u can’t b quick with 2 handed heavy weapons 👍

  2. I’ve gotten pretty far in the game and even picked up a few tips on this article – good job! So many of these tips and tricks pages are crap, but yours is good! Will have to bookmark the site. 😉

  3. I’ve seen other people comment in this thread about what constitutes inventory slots. So far, the latest “rule” I’ve heard says that you count up everything that isn’t actually equipped.

    That means: all the potion groups (a group is 1-10), all the Revival Scroll groups (again, 1-10), and all the unequipped equipment.

    The problem is that comparing that number to what I get when counting it myself manually comes up with a different number.

    According to the Blades APP, I have 80 items
    According to a manual count, I have:

    51 items of armor and weapons (+7 that are equipped)
    30 groups of potions and scrolls

    Which indicates I have 81 items, not 80. I’m wracking my brain trying to think if it’s a bug (I doubt it) or if maybe one of my acquired items that just sit in my inventory (the Elder Scroll) counts (but if it did, it would subtract 1 MORE to my current inventory). And by the way, I know that as it stands, I’m getting off easy because somehow it’s not counting 1 item. But that kind of an oops shouldn’t count.

    I even thought about a ring that I got (described at end), and I wondered if somehow it’s not counting it. But again, I’d have a similar situation to the Elder Scroll that I mentioned above. In other words, if the ring WASN’T being counted, my manual count would have said I had 82 items.

    But it doesn’t. Has anyone heard from WordOfGod about what the actual rule is? I must admit that I almost wish I could just either store some of this crap somewhere not on my body, or else add a feature to the app so that you can get a full list of “Used Inventory Slots”.

    Anybody else have any thoughts about this?


    P.S. (Like many of you, I had the chance to get a special bonus because of E3. One thing I got was a “Ring of Cascadia” (adds +1 to: Quick Strike (Ability) ranks, Absorb (Spell) ranks, Willpower (Perk) ranks.)

    1. The inventory says 80 cos you can’t unequip your weapon.

  4. Where do i have to travel to repair my eguipment? I dont get it. I have gems but i cant use them for myself, and if i choose some of the armors and click repair, it just says that i dont have any repair kits. Where i can buy them or is there some “healing” place where you can heal up everything 🙄 i cant do anything cos im loosing to enemies all the time, i need to repair everything 🙁

    1. Equipment can be repaired in town at the Blacksmith. You’ll need to have placed one in town.

  5. How can i trow a spell? I dont figure it out. I can only hit with Sword

    1. You have to level up enough to be able to unlock a spell in your talents. Then it’ll show up on the bottom left side when you are in combat.

  6. Great tips thank you

  7. I can’t figure out which items besides weapons and armor take up inventory space. I only have 21 pieces of weapons and armor but i have 53 inventory spaces occupied and its very unclear which potions or misc items are taking up the rest of the space, someone plz help me.

    1. Exactly. What counts as inventory besides weapon & armor? I can’t figure it out or find any answers. Anyone know?

      1. I looked into this a bit, it looks like potions and resurrect scrolls can take up a lot of inventory space. Each (10) stack of those items takes up a slot. So, if you have a lot of unused potions and revival scrolls then that could be the problem.

  8. I can’t find the smithy I’ve tried going to the abyss and all over town. Help menu isn’t doing much.

    1. You have to build the Smithy, go to one of the ruins and select it.

  9. I simply can’t rebuild the smithy

  10. Does anyone know if you can equip potions? I have been trying to figure it out and have not had any luck. I know when you are running low on health, stamina and magicka they pop up, but I want to use some on mobs for debuffs, without trying to open my inventory during combat.

    1. Pretty sure you can’t equip them, you can only use them when you are in combat. Everything but health regenerates pretty quickly.

      1. Thank you. I can open my inventory while In combat to get to them. The fight pauses while I have it open, but it just sucks. It would be nice if they would fix it to where we can equip them, it sure would make it more user friendly.

  11. I simply don’t know how to rebuild the smithy. It’s one of the first objectives and when I explore the town I talk to everyone and none of them give me any hints and help menu is also useless!

    1. You just have to walk up to the rubble of one of the buildings and tap on the icon that says “Ruins”.

  12. Arrgg… I just spent 400g repairing my armor and shield. My armor rating didn’t go up one point! What’s the point of repairing?

    1. You want to repair because if your armor or weapon breaks while in a dungeon it’s completely useless.

  13. I’m never sure if I should sell or salvage my weapons and armor. For example, if it maybe gives me 2 iron ingots salvaging versus 200 or 300 gold selling, I’m not sure what’s better… Is it based on what I can buy an iron ingot for (125g at the moment)? Any tips?

    Also, regarding weapons, I have a little plain dagger that does more dps (damage per second) (93) than my Superior Iron Warhammer of Sparks (72). Is it correct that I should mostly be using the dagger (assuming perks and abilities are equal)?

    Also repairing seems super expensive. They want 107g to repair my hide boots when I can buy a new pair for 121g. (I guess crafting would also costs 8 pelts…) hmmm. perhaps I should just craft some iron boots for 143g (+8 ingots). Ok. I see. I guess repairing saves the cost of the materials. My armor is down just a few points from max and they want 100g to repair it. I don’t want to craft or temper anything until I can get to steel… need tons of limestone… 🙁

    1. Not really sure what’s better, if you think you’ll need the materials you get back from salvaging then it’s probably better to do that. If it’s something you won’t be using, then just sell it for gold.

      1. In the early gane I always salvaged, however in the late game the Enchanter sells some expensive items like Souls gems and you’ll find yourself lacking gold. Now, you cant sell to shops unlimitedly since they have a limit on the gold they have, so what I do is that I buy what I want, which adds gold to the amount that they have, then sell then what I don’t need.

  14. Get rid of useless armor and weapons before repairing, otherwise you will spend a bunch of money repairing every item in your inventory…
    Silver chests now takes just one hour to open.

    1. How do l get rid of unwanted weapons?

      1. How do I know what my enemy is resistant too?

      2. You can go into your “Character” inventory and select any item (clicking the search icon) from there you can “discard” it without selling it. Obviously selling or salvaging is better but if your shops can’t afford to buy it then that’s the only way to free up inventory spots.

      3. You can sell them at the blacksmith.

  15. How do you even open the chests in this game?? I thought it might be glitchy, so I deleted and re-downloaded. I had been on their waiting list, and the game finally opened a few days ago. BUT…I’m stuck on level 1 and see wood chests everywhere. How do I open them? Tapping on or holding them does not work. I can’t even access the “character” and “question” icons. When I tap on the upper left-corner diamond, all information in the screen is light grey and unclickable. Am using an iPhone 8, and all the graphics look great – but I can’t advance anywhere. I may have to contact app support – just wondering if anyone else is having this problem, and if so, how they fixed it?

    1. You’ll find them around in quests and what not, you have to tap on them to put them into your inventory. Once you have them there, you can click “unlock” on them and the timer will start. Once that timer is complete, you can then open the chest and get the loot. It has to be a glowing chest, you might be seeing chests that aren’t actually lootable.

      1. Thank you! I didn’t realize they needed to be glowing. When you start the game, there are chests everywhere, but none glow. I’ve now advanced into the town and all is working well. Thanks again for your help 🙂

        1. No problem, happy to help and have fun with the game!

      2. If that doesn’t work, it might be a bug.

  16. How to save a game, I’m new to this

    1. The game auto-saves, you don’t need to save.

  17. Do you know if there is a difference between Dwelling, Homestead, and House, besides cosmetic?

    1. It’s just cosmetic as far as I know.

  18. I’m having a hard time with my storage capacity. It says i’m over my limit but I counted my items and i’m no where near it. Misc Items also don’t count for storage when I sell them so I don’t know where the number comes from. I’ve sold most of my armour and weapons now and still can’t get below the carry capacity. Any help?

    1. I tested it on my character, it looks like armor and weapons are what counts. I think some of the more common building materials count as well. Are you sure you aren’t mistaking the chest capacity for the item capacity? They are separate from each other, and it’s easy to stack up chests. You can increase your item capacity by paying a some gems (not too many), or there’s a perk you can get.

      1. Yeah I maxed out both, my chest are at 20/100 and my items are at 140/120. I only have 20 items total not including the misc items. I tried selling building materials too and it didn’t reduce the number.

        1. I want to say that sounds like a bug, but I’m not sure why that’s happening. I wouldn’t sell building materials, unless you’ve maxed your town.

          1. Only Sold copper as a test because I was almost out anyway. Didn’t work. I contacted Bethesda Support about it. If only they replied as fast as you do.

          2. Bummer, sorry you are having issues. Hopefully they get back to you soon!

  19. I’m supposed to upgrade my town hall to level 2 in order to be able to do my next quest. My only promlem is that I don’t know how to upgrade the town hall. Thanks!

    1. It says the town hall automatically upgrades as it gains prestige, but how much presteige does it take?

      1. Not sure, there’s no real way to tell. Looks like it might stay a level behind your town.

        1. It’s at the top of the screen when you are in town. Bring up your prestige by building houses or “dwelling” in a ruined spot in town

  20. What counters what? Currently I have been very into the game and have found myself stuck on the same level for a while. In the level there are a lot of undead. I was wondering what I can use to help counter the undead? They resist fire and poison so I don’t know where else to go from here.

    1. If you mean Wights, then it’s Cleaving and Shock damage.

  21. Hey so I was wondering when I can actually play the game. I have the app downloaded but it says I have to wait to play it, how lomg do I have to wait?

    1. They are rolling out Early Access to people slowly as far as I know. I’m not sure exactly when you’ll be able to play.

  22. Where do you get health potions from? I was lucky to be able to get early access and I’ve looked everywhere in town and can’t find anything on getting potions

    1. I’m not sure they ever drop from loot, but you can craft health potions with the Alchemy Laboratory.

      1. Yes, craft them at the Alchemy Laboratory, which you have to build. As some quests get tougher I’ve been crafting a bunch, as food or plant sources are sometimes scarce.

  23. When will the game be released on android?

    1. Pretty sure it’s already out on Android for Early Access. It’s not available to everyone right now unfortunately.

  24. Hello there. Thanks for this awesome guide. I had one question I’m quite confused about. The damage rating for most versatile weapons is higher than their heavy counterparts. Now is that their rating when they’re used double-handed or is that single-handed rating? And if it’s their single handed rating then aren’t they way stronger than the heavy ones, cause you can also use a shield and using them double handed will only boost their damage?

    1. That’s a good question, I’m honestly confused by this too. I’m wondering if heavy weapons are bugged then, because they seem to do the damage they say they are supposed to in the stats when I tested it. When I two handed a versatile, it did the damage the stats said as well.

      1. Maybe the Heavy Weapons aren’t supposed to do more damage and they just provide better blocking?