Quote Originally Posted by The Jack View Post
But, more related, is that, well, having a whole city on your side doesn't matter when you've got superhumans involved. Come a high enough level and the average grunt will have to saw through your throat with an ebony disk saw, which you'd never really want to do when the charm spells come into play...

Maven needs some extreme elites on her side. A city of regular people won't work.
All a character would need to do is grab maven, charm her, get her contacts, and kill them
Or Not get noticed, kill maven.
or leave no survivors
or kill her, charm the assassins that show up, kill their friends.
You're making it sound like a superhero comic, and now I want to see Eddie Brock, investigative reporter go poking around in Riften and when Maven sends thugs after him Venom eats them.

Quote Originally Posted by Rynjin View Post
Which is why the better solution to Essential NPCs is to just let them die if the player kills them, and auto-fail any quests that required their presence. Have some quests with alternate questgivers; most of the guilds should be fine with a specific character missing, for instance. If Tolfdir is killed there's no reason Mirabelle can't take over, for example.

Give them slight protections so they need to be DELIBERATELY killed, not just, like, the player threw a lightning bolt while they were in a group fight and the stupid NPC ran in the way, but don't make them 100% immortal.
Second this; maybe swap them from 'essential' to 'protected' like followers are.

Quote Originally Posted by Keltest View Post
Indeed. My money is on some external event that comes in and cleans up both sides, like another Dominion invasion. In the chaos, the exact records of who held what hold when are lost, and Tullius and Ulfric are both missing.
I agree this is the most likely outcome. And it will probably be a downer ending for Skyrim; if the Dominion don't wipe everyone out then the Falmer boil out of Blackreach and do it instead, or the Eye of Magnus fallout turns the whole region into a magical wasteland. I do expect Paarthurnax will be dead and Emperor Mede as well. The Dark Brotherhood is iffy; it's a popular faction. I think it is more likely than not that it comes back, but if ESVI takes place far enough in the future they could suggest the possibility that it WAS destroyed and someone independantly started a new one and just reused the name. We even have a culprit for who that person could be - Aventus Arentino.