There’s a handful of games I play with a fair amount of regularity. I am not an elite gamer by any stretch, nor do I want to be. But I enjoy derping around in a couple of different games, some single player and some MMO. Right now I’m derping around mostly in Elder Scrolls Online (ESO). Just a heads up – this is a very image-heavy post.
It’s a fun game. I’ve played since beta and was involved in the long-term beta. I go through my phases of not playing a whole lot either because I’m in a super busy cycle at work or I’m derping around more in other games but by and large it’s pretty much my favorite MMO largely because there’s so many things to do.
One of my favorite activities in the game is collecting in-game houses and decorating them. I have quite a few of the houses – most I purchased, a couple of them I got as part of a game event. One of those is the Grand Psijic Villa.
The Grand Psijic Villa is an enormous house, located in Artaeum as part of the Summerset xpac. It was given away to players as part of the Summerfall event; an event where levels of prizes were given to all players who participated based on the percentage of participation. The Villa was the prize for 100% participation.
I’ve had this thing for a couple of years now and I’ve been working on it nearly that long. I really had no idea what to do with it at first, the thing is so stinking huge and my favorite house remains Hunding’s Palatial Hall, which I’ll feature in a future post. But a recent xpac introduced a new feature – Antiquities – and many of the items you can earn through Antiquities are furnishing items reflective of various cultures in the Elder Scrolls universe. Which gave me the idea of turning my Villa into a museum complex, complete with gardens, cafe, bathrooms, curator’s quarters, and even a banker and merchant for all your ATM needs. Many of the items found in the Villa/museum are interactive, allowing the visitor to experience these exhibits.
It’s still a massive work in progress but as I finish areas of it to my satisfaction, I’ll feature them here. I hope you enjoy looking at the screen captures as much as I’ve enjoyed building these!
Part 1: Khajiit Gardens
Khajiit culture in ESO is one of my favorites, not the least reason of which is the Khajiit are all cats. And there are all kinds of Khajiit from the more well-known bipedal/humanoid Khajiit to the tiny four-legged Alfiq that look like housecats to the massive Senche-raht who look like they could take your ass apart and lick their claws clean before dinner. Khajiit morphology is tied to the phases of the moons, with the moon phase determining the physiology of the individual. You can read more about Khajiit lore here.
Between the original Khajiit sections of the vanilla game and the later release of the Elsweyr xpac (the traditional Khajiit homeland) there is a ton of furnishings and artifacts centered around Khajiit culture available in-game. So for my first section on the Villa, I’ll take you on a tour through the Khajiit Gardens.
The walkway to the right of the door to the Villa itself (as you are facing the door) leads you to the entrance to the Khajiit Garden. The archway is flanked by two guardian Senche statues.
Past the walkway, turn right and there is a large statue of the Pride of Alkosh Hero, holding a lantern aloft. The lantern can be turned on or off. At the base of the lantern is a Khenarthi Bell which is ringable.
Pivot left, and you will see a Moonmont Lunar Altar, and a statue of The Mane.
The Altar displays a Moon Projection stone, and a moon sugar pipe gently wafting the scent of moon sugar to please Khenarthi.
The statue of the Mane (Khajiit spiritual and secular leader) to the left sits on a raised pedestal, decorated with candles and offerings left by the Mane’s faithful people.
In front of the Mane, the steps leading back down to the lower level of the Garden display the four phases of the Two Moons, Jone and Jode. The Moons are sacred to the Khajiit and are tied to every aspect of Khajiit life and culture.
Cross the pathway, and there you will find some of the interactive features of the Garden. The Lion medallion can be turned on or off. His mouth is open when the flames are lit, and closed when they are extinguished.
Next to the medallion, the Singing Wall plays a soft, haunting melody and shimmers with light. This feature can also be toggled on or off.
Turn 180 degrees, and there you will see Khenarthi temple bells. These colorful bells chime softly in the wind, and can be turned on and off as well. Behind the bells, you can see a painted rock, crafted lovingly by local Khajiit artists in Southern Elsweyr.
Turn to your left, and proceed down the path where you will find a peaceful memorial garden dedicated to the Khajiit hero Khunzar-Ri.
The sarcophagus is empty, but if you rest a hand on it you may hear words of wisdom garnered from his many adventures. A meditation sand ring sits before the memorial, inviting you to a moment of reflection with a small, mischievous ja’khajiit.
Walk to the right, and there you will see a shrine to another Khajiit deity, Boethra. Here, she watches over Khunzar-Ri while behind her, a bonfire burns enternally. At the base of her rock is another example of local artistry.
Continue on over the bridge and there you will find a Moons-blessed ceremonial pool glowing with the soft light of the Two Moons. It is a popular spot to pause and rest.
If you turn to the left from Khunzar-Ri’s rest, you can go up the stairs and visit a statue of a Tojay-raht monk. The Tojay-raht are another form of Khajiit, one of the bipedal morphologies.
If you’re feeling brave you can hop up onto the rocks and get a close look at the massive replica of the Moon Gate. I’m standing next to it here, to give you a sense of how big it is!
You can see the waterfall behind it through the opening of the gate, which flows down under the gate and from there, falls into the memorial pool. The pool is watched over by two more guardian statues.
I hope you enjoyed this tour of the Khajiit Gardens in my Villa. As I finish other sections, I’ll post them here as well!