How Many Guilds & Factions Can You Join in ‘Skyrim’ at the Same Time?

How Many Guilds Factions Can You Join in Skyrim at the Same Time

One of the things that Elder Scrolls Games are famous for are its numerous guilds and factions that the players can join. By joining a faction, you gain access to special faction-specific storylines, followers, and unique headquarters that you can use. Some factions likewise have their rival factions, and being a member of both is not a good idea or is possible in general. This is why we’ve decided to create this guide that covers all joinable factions in Skyrim, but before we start working through the details, let’s answer our main question, how many factions can you join in Skyrim at the same time?

You can join nine factions in Skyrim, with some factions being mutually exclusive, such as Imperials and Stormcloaks, Dawnguard, and Volkihar Vampires. This means that you can join up to 7 factions in Skyrim at the same time. Additional factions have been added with the Creation Club, like Tribunal Temple, and there are likewise smaller factions that you can become an honorary member of, but we’ve decided not to include them in the main count due to them not having any significant impact or large storylines.

Now that we’ve covered the total number of factions you can join simultaneously, it’s time to analyze the details. If you’re interested in what factions are rivals and the smaller honorary factions you can only technically join, stay with us and keep reading!

There are only four primary factions in Skyrim that have a significant impact on your character development

Skyrim is a huge game with numerous side quests and several large storylines that encompass potentially hundreds of hours of playtime. Even though Skyrim’s main storyline is rather short compared to the previous games in the franchise, luckily, just like any previous installment, Skyrim implemented various factions you can join.

Like previous Elder Scrolls installments, Skyrim added factions for four primary archetypes of characters: mage, warrior, thief, and assassin.

As a mage, you might be inclined to join the College of Winterhold, Skyrim’s version of Mage’s Guild. And while the College of Winterhold storyline was kind of weird, short, and dumped you in the position of an Arch-Mage with no build-up whatsoever, it’s decent enough if you plan on surrounding yourself with like-minded sorcerers and if you want to gain access to a powerful array of magic-oriented trainers.

Skyrim College of Winterhold


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Warriors may join The Companions, Skyrim’s equivalent of Fighter’s Guild. Even though the Fighters Guild and Companions have pretty much the same purpose due to the two factions being related, the Companions have this weird werewolf thing going. Joining Companions also grants you access to a smaller sub-faction within the faction called The Circle. You can join the Circle as soon as you become a werewolf.

Skyrim faction companions

Assassin-oriented characters can join the famous Dark Brotherhood. Dark Brotherhood has a storied history in every Elder Scrolls installment, and this faction generally has the best storylines and the most memorable characters.

Skyrim faction dark brotherhood

Lastly, Thieves can join the Thieves Guild. Thieves Guild has one of the longer storylines in Skyrim, allowing you to hone your stealth-based skills like sneaking, lockpicking, and pickpocketing. This faction is likewise an important source of gold during the early portions of the game due to its radiant “Special Jobs” quests that you can do an infinite amount of time. Like with Companions, Thieves Guild has a sub-faction within the faction that you can join, the Nightingales.

Skyrim faction thieves guild

When it comes to primary factions in Skyrim, you can join all four of them at the same time. It doesn’t matter if you’ve never cast a spell in your life; you can join the College of Winterhold. If you suck at sneaking? It doesn’t matter. You can still learn on the job while doing quests for the Thieves Guild. Primary factions in Skyrim are not mutually exclusive in Skyrim, and you can join them all simultaneously.

Some factions in Skyrim are mutually exclusive, and you have to choose

Primary factions are open to everyone, but some factions are more “rival” oriented, and you generally have to pick one in front of the other. Of course, we’re talking about the Civil War storyline and the Dawnguard storyline.

During the Civil War storyline, you’re forced to choose between Imperial Legion and Stormcloaks. What it’s important to mention is that there is no way to resolve this questline peacefully, and you will have to make some hard choices because the “third option” doesn’t exist. You can, however, during the course of the Civil War storyline, change your mind several times and opt-out to join the opposing faction.

Jarl Ulfric Stormcloak


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The Dawnguard add-on introduced two additional factions, but you can only join one at any given time, the Dawnguard and Volikhar Vampires.
Dawnguard is a faction of vampire hunters led by Isran, they are holed up in Fort Dawnguard, and the faction generally gives you access to some powerful weapons and followers, such as armored Trolls. This faction is the better choice between the two due to having access to some unique weapons that are not available through other means.

Skyrim dawnguard faction

Volikhar Vampires are a vampire coven holed up in Volikhar Castle, situated on a small island in the Sea of Ghosts near the border with High Rock. Joining Volkihar vampires means that the Dawnguard faction will be your enemy, but you will gain access to a powerful “Vampire Lord Form.”


Even though you can join only Volkihar Vampires or Dawnguard, you will get an opportunity to switch sides just like with the Civil War Storyline, but to unlock all bonuses given by both factions, you will have to stick with your chosen faction until the end.

Smaller factions that you can join but don’t affect the game in a significant way

Besides the four primary and two mutually exclusive factions, you can join several smaller factions with short storylines. One such faction is Bards College, situated in Solitude. No special perks are associated with the faction, but one fairly interesting storyline and a festival to finish it off are involved. As the name says, Bard College trains Bards and musicians that perform around various inns and taverns in Skyrim.

Tribunal Temple is a small faction added by the Creation Club content. The Tribunal Temple is a cult of heretical Dunmer that keeps “the old ways” and worships the former living gods, Sotha Sil, Almalexia, and Vivec. If you’re feeling nostalgic for Morrowind, I recommend you try this one if you haven’t already.

Faction in Skyrim that you can become an honorary member of

Now that we’ve covered the larger factions, it’s time to analyze all the other ones you have contact with in the game. And while those factions are not joinable in the same way as primary factions, you can still become an honorary member of some of them.


Blades is a faction dedicated to slaying dragons and protecting the Septim line of emperors. Considering ALL the events that transpired in the last several hundred years, Blades are a shadow of their former selves, and their primary purpose is lost. You get an opportunity to become an honorary member of the Blades during the main storyline when you meet Delphine and Esbern. If you refuse to kill Paarthurnax, Blades will no longer speak to you, and you will lose access to some perks like followers and living quarters.

Skyrim secondary factions blades


The Forsworn are an aggressive faction of ritualistic and uncivilized Bretons that inhabit the Reach and are stuck in constant warfare with the local Nords that immigrated to their lands and basically ruined their culture, no matter how savage it is. Even though you never get the opportunity to join the Forsworn, you get the opportunity to work with them during the quest “No One Escapes Cidhna Mine.”

Skyrim secondary factions forsworn


A cult of monks situated at the High Hrothgar. You can become an honorary member of the Greybeards during the main storyline. The Greybeards follow Jurgen Windcaller’s Way of the Voice and dedicate their whole lives toward worshiping the Thu’um. Paarthurnax leads them, and if you decide to kill him, The Greybeards will no longer speak with you, and you will lose access to perks related to shouting. For example, Arngeir will no longer reveal to you the locations of Word Walls around the world.

SKyrim secondary factions greybeards


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Skaal are a peaceful group inhabiting the eastern side of Solstheim. They follow the old ways and worship the “All-Maker.” You get an opportunity to become the honorary Skaal during the main Dragonborn storyline when Skaal turn out to be an extensive source of knowledge on how to combat both Miraak and Hermaeus Mora.

Skyrim secondary factions skaal

House Telvanni

House Telvanni has its roots in Morrowind Game, where they were one of the primary factions that you could join. You can join Hose Telvanni during the Dragonborn storyline when you meet Master Neloth. After doing some errands for Neloth and basically saving both him and his home, he offers you the opportunity to join his revered house of mages with all of its perks, which is to say, there are none.

Skyrim secondary factions house telvanni

Starfield Beats Skyrim’s “Concurrent Players Record,” but the Numbers Don’t Tell the Whole Story

Starfield surpasses Skyrims concurrent player count

Bethesda’s most recent launch of Starfield promised to be the largest in the company’s history, just like the massive game itself. Even though the developers were criticized for some exploration aspects of the game, to put it plainly, lack of things to do on some planets and lack of diversity on the planets in general, the launch did manage to surpass another legendary game from Bethesda’s repertoire, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

Skyrim turns 12 years old in just a few short months, and around 12 years ago, it registered the peak concurrent players count of 287,411, according to SteamDB. Starfield managed to surpass that number a few times now, as 13 hours ago, the game registered a peak concurrent player count of 330,723 players in the game. 

Starfield playercount

Although the peak seems humble when compared to some other games, it’s important to note that Steam is not the only platform on which the game was released on. Due to lucrative deals, many players instead opted out to try out the game on Microsoft’s Game Pass, so what we’re seeing on Steam is a far cry from the real number of players. 

Starfield also hadn’t managed to dethrone Bethesda’s other giant, Fallout 4. At one point 8 years ago, the game registered an all-time peak of 472,962 concurrent players, as the interest in the game was enormous.

Starfield’s number look humble, at least on Steam, but it’s important to take into account that the franchise is also rather new, and players really don’t know what to expect considering an overwhelming amount of both positive reviews and criticism of some of the game aspect’s that were supposedly overhyped. 


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In any case, we don’t expect Starfield to fall off the radar anytime soon. The developers have announced the release of modding tools, scheduled to launch sometime in 2024. Even in the absence of official modding tools, its modding community is thriving, with thousands of mods already uploaded and ready to improve the game in several aspects that the players found lacking.

One thing that ensures the longevity of most Bethesda games is its modding fanbase, and we have no doubt that Starfield will see some drastic unofficial upgrades in the next several months and, due to them, perhaps even dethrone Fallout 4. 

The Elder Scrolls VI Is Still 5+ Years Away & Might Not Be Available on PlayStation, Says Microsoft’s Mike Spencer

The Elder Scrolls VI Is Still 5 Years Away Might Not Be Available on PlayStation Says Microsofots Mike Spencer

It’s been 11 and a half years since The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim was released, and despite the game being re-released numerous times and content being added both officially and through the modding community, fans are eagerly awaiting tidbits of news regarding the so-far unnamed sixth installment in the franchise.

Bad news came last week when during the Activision Blizzard FTC Trial, Microsoft’s Mike Spencer announced that the game might still be 5+ years away. 

In December of last year, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced its intention to block Microsoft’s proposed acquisition of Activision Blizzard, a deal worth $68.7 billion. Recently, a federal court in California issued a temporary restraining order, as requested by the FTC, which effectively halts the Microsoft-Activision Blizzard deal for the time being.

Last week, the FTC was seeking a preliminary injunction against Microsoft and Activision Blizzard. If successful, it would prevent the completion of the acquisition while the FTC conducts its review of the transaction’s compliance with U.S. antitrust laws.


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The granting of a preliminary injunction would have a significant impact on Microsoft and Activision Blizzard’s plans, potentially even jeopardizing the deal. The acquisition was initially expected to close by July 18, 2023. If the injunction is imposed, the parties would either have to renegotiate or face the possibility of the deal falling through.

An evidentiary hearing between Microsoft, Activision Blizzard, and the FTC is scheduled for August 2, which is after the upcoming deadline in July.

During the hearing, Mike Spencer mentioned the probable Elder Scrolls VI release window 

“It’s many years away, but it’s a game we have announced we would begin working on. “I think we’ve been a little unclear on what platforms it will launch on, given how far out the game is. It’s difficult for us right now to nail down exactly what platforms that game will launch on.”


“As I said with Elder Scrolls 6, it’s so far out it’s hard to understand what the platforms will even be at this point. It’s the same team that’s finishing Starfield, which comes out this September. So we’re talking about it being likely five-plus years away.”

Spencer’s words did little to quell the worry that Bethesda’s most famous franchise won’t be available on Play Station, and the fans that once welcomed healthy competition in the form of PS exclusives are now calling for fairer release practices. 

In any case, considering everything we’ve heard, there’s going to be quite some time before we hear & see anything solid related to Elder Scrolls VI. 

Bethesda is usually delaying its flagship IP as long as possible to ensure the best experience possible for fans, and considering the probable scope of the game and technologies involved in making it; it’s not surprising that the game is taking so long. 

How Do You Use the Investor Perk in Skyrim?

how to use investor perk in Skyrim

A significant part of Skyrim’s gameplay revolves around its economy, and economy, in turn, is mostly influenced by your speech skill that can, when raised enough, help you accumulate quite the wealth. One of the most important speechcraft perks you can acquire is the so-called “Investor” perk, but some players have trouble utilizing this perk to the fullest due to the various bugs. So, we created this guide to explain how to use the “Investor” perk effectively in Skyrim. 

Investor perk will allow you to invest 500 gold in merchants to raise their overall gold available for bartering by 500 gold. All you need to do is navigate to the “I want to invest in your business” option while you are navigating through the dialogue options. However, You should consider that some merchants are affected by a bug that allows you to invest in their store for an infinite amount of times without ever remembering that you already invested in them. Their overall gold, however, will never increase. 

Now that we’ve covered how to use the investor perks, it’s time to analyze it in a bit more detail. If you’re interested in how to unlock the perk and how to utilize it the best, stay with us and keep reading!

What speech level do you need to be to unlock Investor perk? 

Generally, you will level speech every time you trade with the merchants or interact with other NPCs via special dialogue options such as bribe, threaten, etc., and it shouldn’t be too hard to max out speech in the mid-game, as there are various effective guides on how to do it. But luckily for you, you don’t have to be a master level in speech to unlock the Investor Perk. You just need to spend a lot of points in the skill tree and be fairly proficient at it. 

investor perk skyrim


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You can unlock the Investor perk as soon as you hit level 70 in speech, and if you’ve previously unlocked the “Merchant” perk, that allows you to sell any type of item to any kind of merchant. This is among the most useful perks in the tree, so generally, everybody who decides to orient their character to, well, the speech will strive to get this perk as soon as possible. It makes flipping goods faster than usual, but it also causes your “go-to” merchants to be drained of funds relatively quickly, and this is where the Investor perk comes on. 

What does Investor perk do & how to use it? 

Investor perk allows you to invest 500 gold in merchants that can be found all over Skyrim. The perk is not limited to a type of merchant since you can invest in alchemists, smiths, or general merchants. It really doesn’t matter as long as the merchant in question is not affected by a bug. You can find a list of all investable merchants here, but keep in mind that the bugs that affect various merchants can be fixed with the Unofficial Skyrim Patch at any given time.

As soon as you activate the perk, the first time you wander into a shop and activate the dialogue with the merchant, you will get the following choice “I would like to invest in your business.” As soon as you click on that line, the money will be subtracted from your inventory immediately, and the merchant’s gold will be raised by that amount (500 gold). 

It’s a pretty useful perk to have, but most people are just not willing to invest in it early on in the game. Luckily the legendary skills allow you to acquire all perks eventually if you’re persistent enough and willing to grind. 

You can invest only once in any given merchant.

Bugs that affect the Investor perk 

Most of the players get confused by the perk since the option to invest is not present for at least 1/3 of the game’s merchants, and it’s mostly due to random bugs affecting them. So if the option to invest is missing, there is a really large chance that the merchant in question is simply “un-investable” due to a bug and not by design. You can resolve most of those issues by using various unofficial patches. 

Some bugs are more bizarre in nature, like the one affecting Angeline Morrard in Angeline’s Aromatics. This apothecary will allow you to invest in its store endlessly; as long as you have the funds, the merchant seemingly forgets about it, but, there’s a catch, her base gold will never rise. It will always stay at the pre-investment levels, which results in all your investments being lost forever.


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It’s probably best to avoid investing in Angeline if you don’t plan on installing the Unofficial Patch. 

Ghorza gra-Bagol, an orc smith that can be found near Understone Keep, has the option to invest in her, but the only dialogue option is to refuse the investment making it impossible to raise her standard gold by 500. 

You can install Unofficial Skyrim Legendary Edition Patch to fix this bug, or you can simply “dispose” of Ghorza and wait for her apprentice, Tacitus Sallustius, to take over the store. In this case, you should be able to invest in the store without any issues. 

What is the difference between the Investor perk and Master Trader perk? 

Both the Investor perk and Master Trader perk allow you to raise the standard gold of merchants in Skyrim by 500 and 1000 gold, respectively, but there are some differences between the two perks. Namely, the Master Trader perk is significantly harder to acquire because it requires you to be level 100 in speech and it requires you to have almost all other prior perks activated. 

master trader perk skyrim

Master Trader perk will also add 1000 gold to all merchants, but it doesn’t require you to invest your own gold in traders. The game does it automatically, meaning it doesn’t cost you anything. It’s a useful perk to have, and it will allow you to accumulate wealth rapidly, but it might take some time for you to get there, and most players don’t want to prioritize speech in early or mid-game.

And by the time you are ready to invest all those points in speech, you might already be rich beyond your wildest dreams, so the perk might appear to be useless.