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A couple years ago, I posted a theory that the various ZeniMax franchises are linked through most of the other series being set in the Outer Realms. Here's a timeline that updates the theory, and offers as complete a timeline as I can gather. The franchises featured here include: The Elder Scrolls, Wolfenstein, Doom, Quake, Dishonored, Fallout, Rage, and Commander Keen. Note that this timeline only contains definite dates. And though I consider Heretic/Hexen and Rise of the Triad (original and remake) to be part of the ZeniVerse, there is no clear spot that one could place them...yet! I also consider Prey (2006 and 2017) and The Evil Within to be part of the ZeniVerse, but while they have definitive dates, I can't decide which of the possible timelines they should be assigned to.


Prey 2006 and The Evil Within could be in timelines one or two (the fact that the Internet is mentioned in the former and modern computers are present in the latter eliminate the possibility of them being in timeline three), and I'm wrestling with the decision to place Prey 2017 in timeline one or timeline three; it can't be in timeline two since it takes place in 2032, and the Earth is hit by an asteroid and plunged into apocalypse in 2029.

I'm considering placing it in timeline one because of the technology looking more futuristic compared to the main Fallout titles (timeline three), but that could be excused by different forms of technology surfacing in different parts of the United States (it was divided into commonwealths before the Great War), or by TranStar developing its own unique tech. Also, it's extremely hard to find anything in Prey 2017's timeline that flat-out contradicts what happens in Fallout's timeline, and vice-versa.

A few more details to mention include:

  • The technology of the Da'at Yichud in Wolfenstein: The New Order and its sequel The New Colossus, resemble the Dwemer technology. Yagrum Bagarn was said to have been in the "Outer Realms" when the Dwemer disappeared. I speculate he left some equipment behind by accident, and the people on Earth that would become the Da'at Yichud society discovered and reverse-engineered it.
  • Speaking of the Outer Realms, these include Oblivion, Aetherius, and (according to the in-game TES book, The Monomyth) "other, less structured forms". These could easily refer to smaller realms that could range from lifeless voids to ones that are like Mundus, but on a smaller scale. In TES lore, the Battlespire is located in a slipstream between Mundus and Oblivion. In my theory, there isn't just one slipstream between the two. There are several. Think of it as a multi-layered barrier between the realms. And each layer houses a lesser realm, including one for Earth (which later becomes three after Divergence occurs), and the rest contain the Heretic, Hexen, and Dishonored worlds.
  • The three alternate timelines explain how the franchises can all exist and be canon despite several of these games flat-out contradicting each other. The split, which we will call Divergence, happens in 1943 A.D., but the effects didn't become apparent until 1944. Since The Ultimate Challenge occurs in 1943, It is probable that Adolf Hitler's pact with Abigor, the magical properties of the Spear of Destiny, and the repeated tampering of the space-time continnum by the Nazis, Abigor, and B.J. Blazkowicz caused Earth's dimension to split into three, with each timeline occuring simultaneously. This explains how Mundus and Oblivion have managed to interact with all three timelines while they themselves remain intact as a single continuum. In other words, Earth had a planet-wide Warp in the West.
  •  By matching up the Oblivion Crisis (3E 433) with 1922 A.D. (the Prohibition era and rise of the Soviet Union), this explains why we haven't seen anything from the Earth-based franchises in the TES games that take place before Skyrim; they hadn't happened yet. Also, since the boundaries between Oblivion and Mundus were sealed by Martin Septim, some particularly hostile/spiteful Daedric beings (i.e. the demons from Hell in the Doom and Wolfenstein games) would be desperate to find a new world to conquer. This would explain Adolf Hitler's pact with the demon Abigor in The Ultimate Challenge's backstory, and why the demons in Doom are so intent on invading Earth and Mars.
  • The placement of the Skyrim Civil War (4E 201) in 2123 A.D. explains why if it shares a universe with Fallout, we won't have seen any mention of the Brotherhood of Steel or other associated groups from that series in Tamriel, because not only did they not exist yet in their present state, but even the Great War on Earth was still very recent. It also explains why Doom 2016 (set in 2149 A.D.) has a skeleton wearing the Dragonborn's signature iron helmet. Because that is the Dragonborn, who died exploring an unknown plane of Oblivion (known to the people of Earth as Hell) several years after defeating Alduin and Miraak.
  • It is important to understand that while it is true that Daedra aren't really supposed to be treated as demons, despite many of them looking like what we would call demons, it doesn't mean they're all going to be like Sheogorath or Azura. Many would still be deliberately destructive and malicious, even if they don't see themselves as doing anything wrong. The Hellspawn from Doom, if they are Daedra, would be this kind of Daedra. Also, since there are so many planes of Oblivion not yet explored by the people of Mundus, it would be no wonder why this particular plane hasn't seen interaction with Nirn. The figure (whether it be Abigor, the Icon of Sin, or something else) ruling "Hell" would almost certainly be a Demiprince; stronger than your typical lesser Daedra and capable of ruling his or her own plane of Oblivion, but isn't anywhere near the level of one of the Daedric Princes.
  • Due to the Dishonored world having a 13-month calendar, among other variables, this list is made with the assumption that the Dishonored timeline is two-hundred years slow compared to that of Earth's. For example, 1837 in the Dishonored world would be 2037 on Earth. This would explain why the name of Morgan Yu from Prey 2017 (set in 2032 A.D.) appears in the Dishonored sequels.

For more information on my theory, please visit this link: https://bethesda.net/community/topic/12755/zeniverse-proposal-or-how-the-elder-scrolls-fallout-doom-wolfenstein-etc-could-fit-in-the-same-continuity

First Era

1E 1=2326 B.C.

  • Earth: N/A
  • Nirn: First Era begins

1E 700=1627 B.C.

  • Earth: Yagrum Bagarn visits Earth, leaves behind Dwemer tech on Earth. Tech is eventually discovered by Da'at Yichud society, influences secret creation of advanced technology.
  • Nirn: Yagrum Bagarn is away in one of the Outer Realms (i.e. Earth's dimension); The Dwemer disappear

1E 2920=593 A.D.

  • Earth: N/A
  • Nirn: First Era ends

Second Era

2E 1=594 A.D.

  • Earth: N/A
  • Nirn: Second Era begins

2E 349=943 A.D.

  • Earth: Simon the Wanderer defeats Heinrich I (Return to Castle Wolfenstein)
  • Nirn: N/A

2E 578=1172 A.D.

  • Earth: N/A
  • Nirn: Planemeld begins. (The Elder Scrolls Online)

2E 582=1176 A.D.

  • Earth: N/A
  • Nirn: Planemeld ends. (The Elder Scrolls Online)

2E 706=1300 A.D.

  • Earth: Earliest known encounter of the Sphere on Earth; Mass abduction of Anasazi tribe. (Prey 2006)
  • Nirn: N/A

2E 864=1458 A.D.

  • Earth: N/A
  • Nirn: Stros M'Kai Uprising (The Elder Scrolls Adventures: Redguard)

2E 896=1489 A.D.

  • Earth: N/A
  • Nirn: Second Era ends

Third Era

3E 1=1490 A.D.

  • Earth: N/A
  • Nirn: Third Era begins

3E 389=1878 A.D.

  • Earth: N/A
  • Nirn: Imperial Simulacrum begins (The Elder Scrolls: Arena)

3E 399=1888 A.D.

  • Earth: N/A
  • Nirn: Imperial Simulacrum ends (The Elder Scrolls: Arena)

3E 417=1906 A.D.

  • Earth:N/A
  • Nirn: The Warp in the West (The Elder Scrolls II: Daggerfall)

3E 425=1914 A.D.

  • Earth: World War I begins
  • Nirn: N/A

3E 427=1916 A.D.

  • Earth: N/A
  • Nirn: Dagoth Ur defeated by Nerevarine; Bloodmoon Prophecy; Deaths of Almalexia and Sotha Sil (The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind)

3E 429=1918 A.D.

  • Earth: World War I ends.
  • Nirn: N/A

3E 433=1922 A.D.

  • Earth: Soviet Union formed in Russia
  • Nirn: Oblivion Crisis; Greymarch; Death of Umaril the Unfeathered. Third Era ends (The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion)

Fourth Era

4E 1=1923 A.D.

  • Earth: N/A
  • Nirn: Fourth Era begins

4E 17=1939 A.D.

  • Earth: World War II begins
  • Nirn: Titus Mede crowned Emperor

4E 18=1940 A.D.

  • Earth: BJ Blazkowicz recovers Spear of Destiny, defeats Angel of Death (Spear of Destiny)
  • Nirn: Prince Attrebus Mede is born

4E 19=1941 A.D.

  • Earth: BJ Blazkowicz recovers Spear for second time (Return to Danger)
  • Nirn: N/A

4E 20=1942 A.D.

  • Earth: BJ Blazkowicz battles Adolf Hitler in Castle Wolfenstein (Original Encounter); BJ defeats Harbinger of Doom (Wolfenstein RPG)
  • Nirn: N/A

4E 21=1943 A.D.

  • Earth: BJ Blazkowicz foils Operation Resurrection (Return to Castle Wolfenstein); Allied Soldier retrieves war plans for Operation Rheingold from Castle Wolfenstein (Castle Wolfenstein); BJ retrieves Spear for third time (The Ultimate Challenge); BJ averts chemical war (Nocturnal Missions)
  • Nirn: N/A

[EARTH TIMELINES BEGIN TO SPLIT BEYOND THIS POINT]

4E 22=1944 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: BJ Blazkowicz escapes Castle Wolfenstein, kills Hans Grosse and Dr. Schabbs (Wolfenstein 3D Episodes 1 and 2)
  • Earth, timeline 2: BJ Blazkowicz disrupts Nazi operations in Isenstadt, kills Hans Grosse (Wolfenstein 2009)
  • Earth, timeline 3: Hitler killed in bombing by Allied Soldier (Beyond Castle Wolfenstein)
  • Nirn: Thalmor seize Summerset Isle

4E 23=1945 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: BJ Blazkowicz kills Hitler; World War II ends (Wolfenstein 3D Episode 3)
  • Earth, timeline 2: Hitler survives assassination attempt; World War II continues
  • Earth, timeline 3: Axis Powers surrender; World War II ends
  • Nirn: Annaig Hoinart is born.

4E 24=1946 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 2: BJ averts Nazi operations in Wulfburg (The Old Blood), BJ rendered catatonic in battle (The New Order)
  • Earth, timeline 3: N/A
  • Nirn: N/A

[TIMELINE 2 SPLITS AFTER THIS POINT, DEPENDING ON WHETHER FERGUS OR WYATT IS SAVED.]

4E 38=1960 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 2A: BJ awakens, kills Deathshead (The New Order)
  • Earth, timeline 2B: BJ awakens, kills Deathshead (The New Order)
  • Earth, timeline 3: N/A
  • Nirn: Death of Vundheim

4E 39=1961 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 2A: Second American Revolution begins (The New Colossus)
  • Earth, timeline 2B: Second American Revolution begins (The New Colossus)
  • Earth, timeline 3: N/A
  • Nirn: N/A

4E 68=1990 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: Commander Keen journeys into outer space (Commander Keen)
  • Earth, timeline 2: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 3: N/A
  • Nirn: N/A

4E 86=2008 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: Ranger defeats Shub-Niggurath (Quake)
  • Earth, timeline 2: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 3: N/A
  • Nirn: N/A

4E 98=2020 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 2: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 3: N/A
  • Nirn: Void Nights begin.

4E 100=2022 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: Deimos teleported into Hell; Earth and Phobos invaded by demons (Doom, Doom II: Hell on Earth, No Rest For The Living, The Plutonia Experiment)
  • Earth, timeline 2: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 3: N/A
  • Nirn: Void Nights end

4E 101=2023 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: Demons invade UAC base on Jupiter's moon Io (TNT: Evilution)
  • Earth, timeline 2: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 3: N/A
  • Nirn: N/A


4E 103=2025 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: Earth's resources depleted, likely due to demonic invasions
  • Earth, timeline 2: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 3: N/A
  • Nirn: N/A


4E 107=2029 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 2A: Asteroid collides with Earth
  • Earth, timeline 2B: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 3: N/A
  • Nirn: N/A

4E 113=2037 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 2A: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 2B: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 3: N/A
  • Nirn: N/A
  • Outer Realms: Empress Kaldwin assassinated. Corvo Attano kills Lord Regent, saves Emily Kaldwin. (Dishonored)


4E 126-152=2050-2076 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: Tel Aviv destroyed by nuclear device; Strogg Invasion (Enemy Territory: Quake Wars, Quake II, Quake 4); Interdimensional tournament held by the Vadrigar (Quake III Arena, Quake III Team Arena); Doomguy defeats Mother Demon in Hell, remains in Hell afterwards, ending the demonic invasions of Earth's dimension (Doom 64)
  • Earth, timeline 2: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 3: Resource Wars
  • Nirn: Riften razed during uprising (4E 129); Raven Rock's Bulwark repaired by Lleril Morvayn (4E 130)
  • Outer Realms: Billie Lurk severs the Outsider's tie to the Void (Dishonored: Death of the Outsider)

4E 153=2077 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: Great War begins
  • Earth, timeline 2: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 3: Great War begins
  • Nirn: N/A

4E 201=2123 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 2: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 3: N/A
  • Nirn: Skyrim Civil War; Coming of the Dragons (The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim)


4E 212=2135 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 2A: Nicholas Raine awakens on Earth (RAGE)
  • Earth, timeline 2B: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 3: N/A
  • Nirn: N/A

4E 222=2145 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 2A: Demons invade Mars, Marine defeats Cyberdemon (Doom 3)
  • Earth, timeline 2B: BJ Blazkowicz III and Stan Blazkowicz stop demonic invasion on Mars (Doom RPG)
  • Earth, timeline 3: B.J. Blazkowicz displaced in UAC facility on Mars, encounters Devil Incarnate for the second time (The Ultimate Challenge)
  • Nirn: N/A

4E 223=2146 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 2A: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 2B: Demonic invasion of Earth's moon (Doom II RPG)
  • Earth, timeline 3: N/A
  • Nirn: N/A

4E 224=2147 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 2A: Demons invade Mars for second time. (Resurrection of Evil)
  • Earth, timeline 2B: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 3: N/A
  • Nirn: N/A

4E 226=2149 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 2: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 3: Doom Slayer awakened on Mars. (Doom 2016)
  • Nirn: N/A

4E 238=2161 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: Vault Dweller leaves Vault 13; Crypts and Fools eliminated from Scrapheap (Fallout Demo)
  • Earth, timeline 2: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 3: Vault Dweller leaves Vault 13 (Fallout)
  • Nirn: N/A

4E 274=2197 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: BoS arrives in Midwest (Fallout Tactics)
  • Earth, timeline 2: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 3: BoS arrives in Midwest (Fallout Tactics, "canon" version)
  • Nirn: N/A

4E 285=2208 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: BoS arrives in Texas (Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel)
  • Earth, timeline 2: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 3: N/A
  • Nirn: N/A

4E 336=2241 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 2: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 3: Chosen One sent to retrieve GECK (Fallout 2)

4E 353=2277 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 2: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 3: Lone Wanderer leaves Vault 101; Enclave defeated on East Coast (Fallout 3)
  • Nirn: N/A

4E 357=2281 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 2: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 3: Second Battle of Hoover Dam (Fallout: New Vegas)
  • Nirn: N/A

4E 365=2287 A.D.

  • Earth, timeline 1: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 2: N/A
  • Earth, timeline 3: War between Minutemen, Institute, Railroad, and BoS (Fallout 4)