The history of the Elder Scrolls series can be traced back to the earlier ’90s when development on the first game, The Elder Scrolls: Arena began. At the time, Bethesda Softworks was mainly a sports game studio and as a result they were laughed at when the idea for an action-RPG game came up. Despite the mockery, Bethesda went on to create one of the most beloved RPG series around that redefined open-world gameplay and player choice.
The Elder Scrolls places a large emphasis on player customization, freedom, and the ability to do almost anything you want and be whoever you want. The games start with the player creating their character, and from there the world opens up to them with nearly endless possibilities. This is one of the reasons why the series has received praise from critics. Although certain elements like combat and the level progression have been criticized in the past, credit is always given to the studio for giving the player lots of freedom.
Bethesda has shown an appreciation for detail in their games in the past, and a common theme is that each games starts out with the player either escaping or being released from prison.