Maintenance for the week of June 24:
• PC/Mac: No maintenance – June 24

IMBA Saturnian Symbology in ESO

Hey all! \o/

I looove analyzing figurative arts and media, especialy PC games! It's my hobby to go to the source of artist's inspiration, find messages and delve in symbolic meanings.
It's been a month now and I wanted to share with you my thoughts of the ESO general frame so far, hope you have fun reading. You ready here we go! =)

(be advised - there may be minor spoilers for totaly new players... also appolgies if my English gets wierd at times, it's not my mothertongue)


One cannot create anything new. The world is too old, Time is too endless, History is too long... for innovation to exist.
Yet, inspiration does exist. Every artist is inspired by something, that is why every thing has roots that go deeper. Even roots themselves have roots (and if you have basic knowledge of plants you know it's true).
Yet, when an artist wants to create something, the possibilities are infinite. Every thing can be experessed in innumerable symbolic ways. But in the end, only one variant is chosen to remain as creation. One must ask "WHY" - why this and not that? Why this and not anything else? The artist may not always know the reason himself, but the reason IS within himself. The hardest thing is to see our own selves - that's why artists need critics.



First thing we get familiar with is the LOGO.
It is a stylized Ouroboros. In short, this is the occult symbol of eternal return. It symbolizes Time itself, it is connected to the phoenix mythical motive. Ouroboros is used to depict Ends as well as Beginnings.
Why do the lionhead, the eaglehead and the dragonhead all have draconic bodies? - because they are all snakes, the original Ouroboros is a snake, so this is a suggestion that in spite of the stylization, the symbol is still used in its general meaning.
Why the number 3 embeded into it? I suggest we skip that question for now.

Why lion, dragon and eagle head? - Because this stylized Ouroboros also symbolizes Nirn. Nirn - that's the world. And the world - it often is considered to be the strong of the day. All of these animals had their strong day in Real-Life history: lion for several empires, eagle for Byzantium, dragon for China etc.

Not only do these symbols symbolize civilization, but they are also connected with the Akkadian myth of Anzu. It was a divine beast with the body of a lion, head of an eagle and with some draconic features (his mother and father breathed fire and water... this is the other reason for the three heads to have draconic body). It is also known as Imdugud in Summerian.
As the myth goes, Imdugud was a servant of the god Enlil, but later betrayed the gods because of his hunger for power. Imdugud stole form Enlil the Tablet of Destinies - this was an artifact with which Imdugud could determine the fate of all things.

So the logo tells the main motive of the story - The End-times have come. They are fueled by the hunger for power. The known civilization is the embodiment of the hunger for power, and brings upon itself the End-times.


The rolling cube animation, before "Bethesda" caption is shown.
The darting white line, drawing a square, before the "ZeniMax" caption is shown.
The stylized "O" letter of "Havok".

The cube of "Bethesda" logo is hollow, it's shown as a miniature square frame. This is actualy a stylized depiction of Metatron's Cube. Metatron is the biblical character Enoch (father of Noah), he receives the name Metatron after he has been made an Archangel.
The thing about Metatron's Cube is that in the occult geometry it is viewed from an angle in such a way, that its outlines depict a hexagon. So it is viewed at one of its angles. One can draw smaller cube, viewed from the same angle, inside the big Metatron. Hence the cube is depicted hollow.
The red "Z" letter of the ZeniMax logo is depicted in the center of the white square, because the Metatron's Cube also symbolizes the Z-axis of space (mathematical/physics coordinates).

Thus the Metatron symbol in "Bethesda" part is shown via animation, and in "ZeniMax" part it is shown via geometry-alphabet combo.

So what about "Havok".

There is in existance a photo of a very peculiar fact about Saturn some of you guys may know about. Saturn's North pole:
Or you can just google it for more photos.

It has been photographed during more than one space mission by more than one craft. So you can see not only the two-dimensional hexagon (which is the contour of a three-dimentional cube), but also the vortex in the middle. And that is the idea behind the stylized "Havok".


Saturn is the planet with the strongest gravity pull in our system. It is most famous for its asteroid rings. The ancient god Saturnus in the Roman pantheon was known to be the god of the Capitol, the god of Time, and was initialy a positive diety, before it became conected to unfortunate fate and difficulties. One of the numerous myths about Saturn, the god of Time, is that he eats his own children (everything is consumed by Time, including the things that are born from it).

There is also the motive of revolvement. Remember the symbol for an oblivion gate from ELS IV- Oblivion?

This is the stylized geometry of the anatomy of ***, larynx and throat. These three entrances differ from other sphincters. This is because they are not just gates, but manifestation gates.
In physics this is called an Event Horizon - the semi-imaginary border that divides the state of potential existence and factologic manifestation (potential fullfiled).
Remember the symbol for the Horde in World of Warcraft?

This symbolizs the Horde, which teleported from Draenor to Azeroth via portal. Via manifestation gate. So two bussiness competitors in the gaming industry agree on the same symbol for manifesting portal. But WHY don't they use it heavily in ESO?

Because ESO's message stresses different issue. It revolves around something, so the manifestation gates, the Anchors, must be circular, revolving, based on the number 3, and be anchors at the same time. The previous symbol for a manifestation gate cannot express these things.

So around what does the ESO message revolve? Well... Let's look at Cyrodiil. Look at the White Tower. There are a number of towers in occult symbology, and most of them symbolize the Babylon mythological motive. Bible-geeks among you may have an idea what I am talking about, but I don't want to go there now, so let's continue.
A Dark Anchor hovering over the White Tower of Cirodiil represents Saturn and its rings (remember that Saturn was the god of the Capitol?).

Look at the symbols for the Classes in ESO. They all derive out of Saturn.

Look at the Dragon Knight. Guess what:

Now look at the Sorcerer. As was said above, this is representation of Saturn's North Pole vortex (or is it rather the South pole?).

Look at the Nightblade. Its symbol is a stylized depiction of the Cassini space craft:

Look at the Templar in-game symbol. It represents this photo:
This is a photo made by Cassini observer, when revolving around Saturn. This is how the Earth looks like from there. Templar symbol may also be derived from the wheels of the Chariot of Saturn depicted above.

Sorcerer depicts whirlwind power of elements. Templar depicts hope, which is characteristic for earthlings, Nightblade depicts the dark, lonely and oportunistic space-stalking of the Cassini observer, Dragon Knight depicts the harvest of Cronos (Saturn, the Grim Reaper). And oh... Dragon Knights have a chain-pull ability much like the Dark Anchors.

That is why the draconian Ouroboros was chosen in stead of the previously used traditional occult symbol for a manifestation gate. Also, because The End Times is the main motive of the ESO message, it must have something in common with other End-Time symbols.
Jörmungandr, or the World Serpent or the Midgard Serpent of Norse mythology is also a draconic symbol for the End Times. Myth sais, that when Ragnarök (the End-Times) occur, the World Serpent will be seen for the last time, it will poison the sky, before Thor strikes it down with his hammer.

The poisoning of the sky is depicted by the appearance of the Dark Anchors in ESO. Remember what was the legendary fear of the Nordic peoples? They feared that the sky will come crashing down onto the earth. This is expressed well by the sky being anchored down.
(Also, The World Serpent is used as a symbol in other recently published titles, like Banner Saga for example, which was released several months ago)

And where is Thor's hammer?
Actualy, Saturn, being the god of Time, the Grim Reaper and the god of the Capitol, is therefore the Supreme Judge of all. That is why we open and close court sessions with the striking of the Hammer of the Judge. The hammer is a depiction of Metatron's Cube.
The colour of Saturn is black, so the Saturnian symbology is very often also black. The square hats and black robes they wear during ceremonies at american univercities are also symbol of Saturn and his hammer.
In religion, Metatron's Cube is present as the Kaaba - this is a giant cuboid in Islam's most sacred mosque Al-Masjid al-Haram.

So Saturn itself is the Hammer, and Saturn itself is the World Serpent. That is why it bites its own tail - because it strikes itself with its own hammer when End-Times come.

How is this depicted? By a Dark Anchor hovering above the White Tower. Or... by a Darck Anchor hovering above a pyramid:


A betrayal has happened, while characters in seats of power try to use powerful artifact to influence the fate of all (making the emperor one with dragonborne blood).
Same as Akkadian myth for Imdugud who stole the Tablet of Destinies from the god Enlil.

Characters must struggle and compete for control over Cyrodiil - that is to assume the role of Saturn.

Factions must wage war against one another, fuled by the hunger for power (control of the Capitol), in orther to further the coming of the End-Times.

By the way, have you noticed that Molag Bal is actualy summoned by Tamriel to consume Nirn? Not the other way around?
Hunger for power was the motive that made Minnamarco betray The Five Companions. He wanted power, so he planned to steal the God of Schemes's power and make it his own. So it all began from Minnamarco, because of hunger for power, and NOT from Molag Bal. He was just invited, or baited, to try take Tamriel into Coldharbor. Furthermore, the game tells you that numerous times - common folk and tamrielian populace are the ones that INVITE the Darck Anchors throughout the map.

So, viewed from that angle, to battle for control over Cirodiil is orchestrated from the epicenter - from the White Tower itself. Have you noticed how unconcerned it is about what happens around it? Minnamarco also looks unconcerned in the cinematics, almost as like that is exactly what he wants to be happening around the White Tower.
Because by furthering the hunger for power, the End-Times draw near, and these times would provide opportunity for someone to gain even more power (so the source of the plot is Tamriel, and not Coldharbor... so that is why the logo is made up of Ouroboros stylized with Tamrielian symbology), and that's what it is all about.
(Another title that represents the hunger for power of Tamrielian characters is The Witcher II... and the state of Temeria)

The logo is actualy a stylized Darck Anchor (based on the Ouroboros and on Tamriel seats of power) - which makes absolute sense.

And this also means that Mara lied to you, when she tells you that your true enemies are not mortal. What she did say was that you must see the perspective of the ones you fight against in order to see what is truly at stake.
And seeing what is at stake is actualy the act of recruitment for a given cause. And recruitment is always done by a bad cop and a good cop - being Molag Bal and Mara.

Your soul was stolen by Molag Bal (name means "a Master of Molochs", meaning "King of Kings", meaning Saturn, or Time... The Baal title in semmitic culture is also characterised by child sacrifices, just like the myth for Saturn). Thusly you are made immune to most of the daedric schemes and magic in the game. So when robbed of your soul, you are made useless for their intentions.
Throughout the story you become more and more meaningful character and in the end you take your soul back - Mara gives it back to you, then Molag Bal informs you that everything is still according to his liking.
This means that you were useless, as you were before - a nobody, then you were made a somebody (your personal value was increased), then your soul was returned to you in order for you to be once again useful for the powers that be.

Isn't it just how it happens in Real Life? The most useful servants are the nobodies that you have made into somebodies and then buffed their usefullness by guiding them through some basic life-decisions. So in actuality you are being trained to be the most useful agent of Molag Bal - and that is how his final words are explained. "God of Schemes" anyone?


In my eyes, the outher frame of ESO content is supposed to represent a recruitment program for the Apocalypse - training ground for useless characters to be made useful and involved in the Apocaliptic predicaments, in order to further the goals of the powers that be.

That's all I wanted to share for your enjoyment guys! Thanx for reading and commenting and I hope you liked the thoughts < (^^,) >

Later on I want to post some thoughts on the Stormheaven quest line and zone-plot because it pretty much appeals to my attention and previous experience! If you liked what you read here, I hope that you will enjoy my Stormheaven analysis later (•‿•)

I'm also very excited about Craglorn and the thing that constellations dissapered from the sky, because it is a strong motive in other titles also, like Banner Saga I already mentioned! No doubt that ESO will provide its own viewing angle to this as well!
Edited by Ikumarbeh on May 5, 2014 9:36AM
  • Godzeelas
    Mind blown away! Looking forward to more like this from you!
    "χους εις χουν και πνεύμα εις πνεύμα απελεύσει"
    @godzeelas - Godzeela the Cataphract
    GM of Elysium Gaming PvX guild [EU]
  • Azreloth
    Holy ***, very awesome!
Sign In or Register to comment.