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The Mages Guild
Joining the Mages Guild in Oblivion gains you access to a lot of special perks. You can use the Guild beds, get discounts from Mages Guild sellers, and pick up some useful inventory. Best of all, you are allowed into the Arcane University, which has unique merchants and resources as well as altars for enchanting items and creating your own spells. And, of course, you’ll be able to complete a unique series of sidequests with their own rewards.
Getting accepted into the Guild is a little complicated, though. You have to get a recommendation from each of the seven Guild leaders, who all have their own special requests. This Oblivion walkthrough for the Mages Guild will explain how to join the Mages Guild, so you can start completing quests and climbing ranks.
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Joining the Guild
The first thing you’ll need to do is talk to one of the seven Mages Guild leaders, and let them know you’re interested in becoming a member. It doesn’t matter who you go to first. Your choices are: Jeanne Frasoric in Bruma, Carahil in Anvil, Kud-Ei in Bravil, Falcar in Cheydinhal, Teekeeus in Chorrol, Dagail in Leyawin, and Adrienne Berene in Skingrad (more on all these NPCs can be found in the sections below).
Once you speak to a Guild leader, he or she will allow you to join but tell you that to be a full member and gain access to the Arcane University, you’ll need to get recommendations from each of the seven Guild leaders. What that means, of course, is completing seven sidequests. Each is described below, and they can be done in any order.
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You’ll need to speak with Jeanne Frasoric in the Bruma Mages Guild, which is located at the northernmost tip of the city. It turns out that a mage named J’skar has gone missing, and you need to find him. To do this, first talk to his friend Volanaro (he’ll be somewhere in the Guild as well). Raise his disposition to at least 70, and ask him about J’skar. Volanaro will admit that he knows where his friend is, but before he’ll tell you he wants you to do something for him. You need to play a trick on Jeanne, by stealing a book called Manual of Spellcraft.
The book can be found in the desk in Jeanne’s room, on the top floor of the Guild. Unlock the desk using the spell Volanaro gave you or any other method you prefer, being careful not to let anyone see you. Bring the book back to Volanaro, and he’ll tell you to meet him in the downstairs level of the Guild after 10pm. Meet him at the requested time, speak to him about J’skar, and the missing mage will immediately reappear. Let Jeanne know J’skar is back, and she’ll give you her recommendation.
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Talk to Teekeeus in the Chorrol Mages Guild, located in the northern part of the city. He’ll ask you to speak with a mage named Earana, who is usually hanging around just outside the Mages Guild (if not, she’s probably in The Grey Mare). She wants you to bring her a book called Fingers of the Mountain. Report this to Teekeeus, and he’ll ask you to get the book as well. You can find it by heading northwest from Chorrol, following the pathways (or your quest marker). The book is on a charred corpse.
Once you have the book, you can do a few things with it. You can give it to Teekeeus and call the quest over, or you can then steal it back for Earana. Alternately, you can first give the book to Earana and than steal it back for Teekeeus. If you never give the book to Earana, you won’t be able to complete an optional sidequest only she can give you. But as long as you give the book to Teekeeus at some point, you’ll be able to get his recommendation. (For more on what to do with the book, check out this page.)
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This quest is pretty simple, though it requires some combat. Speak to Carahil in the Anvil Mages Guild, located right across from the city’s main gate. Carahil wants you to investigate some deaths along the Gold Road. You’ll need to travel to Brina Cross Inn (head north along the road towards Kvatch) and speak to Arielle Jurard. She asks you to pose as a merchant, so ask the innkeeper for a room and tell him you’re a traveling merchant. Go to the room you rented and Arielle will follow and speak with you again.
After this, you’ll have to sleep in the bed for at least an hour to trigger the next part of the quest. Leave the inn and you’ll find Arielle and a friend waiting for you. Head east (not too quickly, so the two mages can follow you) until you encounter an Altmer mage named Caminalda. She’ll attack you, though you might have to speak with her first. Defeat her, then go back to Anvil and report to Carahil for her recommendation.
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First you’ll need to visit Adrienne Berene in the Skingrad Mages Guild, located at the north end of the city. She’ll tell you about a mage named Erthor, and ask you to retrieve some notes from him. Go talk to Druja, an Argonian mage you can find in the Guild hall, and he’ll tell you where Erthor is and mark the location on your map. Return to Adrienne and tell her about the cave, and she will send you there.
Find the cave by following your quest marker, heading northwest from Skingrad. Inside you’ll run into a number of zombies—clear them out and speak to Erthor at the south end of the cave. He’s not hard to find, since the cave is only one zone. Once the zombies are all dead Erthor will agree to follow you back to Skingrad. Take him to the Mages Guild, and talk to Adrienne one last time to get her recommendation.
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This quest will require a bit of traveling on your part. Start out by talking to Kud-Ei in the Bravil Mages Guild, located on the west side of town and south of the Chapel. (If you’ve already started the quest "Through a Nightmare, Darkly" you may have to finish that one for him before you can get the recommendation quest.) Kud-Ei wants you to investigate a stolen Mage’s Staff. You’ll need to find Varon Vamori, who is either in the Guild, the Chapel, the inn, or his house on the north side of the city. Raise his disposition to at least 65, and he’ll tell you he stole the staff in question and sold it. Go back and talk to Kud-Ei again, and she’ll ask you to retrieve the staff.
Head to the Imperial City, and visit the Talos Plaza District. Soris Arenim’s house is in the northwest part of the District. Enter the house and talk to Soris. Once you raise his disposition to at least 70, you can ask him about the staff and he’ll sell it to you for 200 gold. Or you can save some money and steal the staff, which is located in a dresser in the basement. Pick the lock, or first steal the key to the dresser from Soris’ desk upstairs. Either way, when you have the staff you can return to Kud-Ei in Bravil and exchange it for her recommendation.
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In the Leyawiin Mages Guild, located at the southwest end of the city, speak with a Bosmer mage named Dagail. She’ll ask you to find a missing amulet, and tell you to speak with a mage named Agata for more details. Agata can always be found somewhere in the Guild hall, and she will in turn tell you to ask around the Guild and see if any of the other mages know anything about the stone. Find Kalthar in the Guild and talk to him about the stone, and report what he says back to Agata. Agata sends you back to Dagail, and if you talk to Dagail about her father you’ll finally get sent away from the Guild to Fort Blueblood.
The Fort is southeast of Leyawiin, across the river (just follow your quest marker). It contains two zones, and you’ll have to fight your way through. Clear the first zone of marauders and other enemies, and in the second zone (Fort Blueblood Halls) you’ll encounter and have to fight a Marauder Warlord. Get the key from his body and use it to open the door in the same area, behind which is a coffin containing the amulet. You’re not quite done, though. When you leave the tomb area you’ll run into Kalthar, who will confront and attack you. After you’ve dealt with him, you can return to Leyawiin and exchange the amulet for Dagail’s recommendation.
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This last recommendation is a little complicated, though it requires no fighting or traveling. Speak with Falcar in the Cheydinhal Mages Guild, located on the west side of town. You might have to wait a bit to find him—sometimes he’s behind a locked door—but hang around the Guild for a while and he’ll show up. He wants you to find a lost Ring of Burden, and sends you to talk with a Guild member named Deetsan. You’ll find Deetsan in the Guild hall as well, and as long as Falcar is out of the room she will agree to give you the key you need (if Falcar is still around, just wait until he or Deetsan moves to a different area).
There’s a small well behind the Guild—use the key to unlock it. Before you go in, make sure you have at room in your inventory for an extra 150 lbs (you might have to drop some inventory on the ground near the well—don’t forget to come back and get it right after you finish the quest). Enter the well. Since there’s no air down there, you’ll have to either work very fast or use the Buoyancy spell Deetsan gave you (or a Water Breathing spell if you have one). Grab the ring from the body floating in the middle of the well, and get back to the Guild.
Speak with Deetsan about the well and Falcar, and she’ll tell you to search Falcar’s room for your recommendation (since he stormed out of the Guild earlier). His room is in the basement, and you won’t find the letter. But you will find two Black Soul Gems in a locked drawer. Bring at least one of the gems back to Deetsan, and she will write you a recommendation herself.
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The Arcane University
After all that, you’re finally ready to become a full Guild member. Travel to The Imperial City and speak with Raminus Polus in the Arcane University. He’ll accept the recommendations, promote you to apprentice, give you a robe, and grant you access to the University.
You can speak to Raminus again to receive the quest "A Mage’s Staff," which allows you to customize a mages staff of your own (scaled to your level). Your next several Mages Guild quests will come from Raminus as well. And now that you’re a Guild member, don’t forget to explore the University—there are a lot of perks to being allowed into this location.
From the Mages Guild to the Imperial City Side Streets, look here for walkthroughs of Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion.