“I'll do it as long as I have to” – inside a Skyrim player’s 1000 day long (so far) quest to kill Nazeem until The Elder Scrolls 6 drops (2024)


“I was determined that no matter what, I would go all the way, even if no one was watching.”

“I had been playing Skyrim for a long time, and one day the idea just came to me,” YouTuber Sidek tells me. “‘What if I killed Nazeem every day until TES VI was released?’”

“I decided to start as a joke,” they continue, “but I was determined that no matter what, I would go all the way, even if no one was watching, I would finish the challenge.”

Today, Sidek’s killing streak of Whiterun’s most infamous resident - the Redguard nobleman who's long held uber-meme status within the Elder Scrolls community thanks to his condescending demeanour and catchphrase of 'do you get to the Cloud District very often?' - reaches 1000 days, having begun all the way back on September 18, 2021. The Elder Scrolls 6, I probably don’t have to tell you, still isn’t here yet.

Skyrim, the game in which Sidek’s been whiling away all of these murderous hours while they, and a lot of people around the world, await more news on the game Bethesda’s properly kicked off working on now that Starfield’s out of the door, was actually the first Bethesda game they played. “I had heard about the game many times, but I had never played it,” they say. “When I decided to try it out, I fell in love right away, mainly because of the freedom of being able to go anywhere, enter any house, attack any NPC at any time, etc. This [is a kind of] freedom I have never felt in any other game, and it is certainly the main reason why Skyrim is my favorite game to date.”

That freedom has allowed Sidek to really let their imagination run wild when it comes to finding different ways to kill Nazeem, little ways of keeping this hobby that they’ve developed interesting as the days, months, and years have progressed. “I don't have a set process,” they say regarding how they go about conceptualising each bout of Cloud District-themed carnage. “There are days when I'm more creative, but I always decide on the spot.

“I usually write down some ideas too, separate some mods to download later and that's it.” They also agree with the idea that they’ve gotten ‘better’ at killing Nazeem since their mission began, saying: “I've already learned a lot about places, spells, weapons, npcs, [and] mods. I have a big list of suggestions and ideas, so it's very rare that I get out of ideas of how to kill him.”

Naturally, with so many to choose from, they struggle to pick out certain kills as favourites. “It's hard to choose one, but I really like day one, because it was the first one, when I killed him using the bound bow, and I've even made references to that day other times,” Sidek says. “Another one I like a lot is day 36, which to this day has the most views, and was the one that made my channel known in the beginning.” In case you’re wondering, day 36’s kill saw Nazeem meet his end at the hands of popular Khajiit mod companion Inigo, in a cheeky bit of outsourcing from Sidek that cut away just as Whiterun’s guards decided that they were still going to apply the bounty for the murder to the player character. Which, I mean, that’s a miscarriage of justice if I’ve ever seen one.

So prolific is Sidek’s ability and desire to send some of Skyrim’s most famous NPCs to Sovngarde – or whichever Elder Scrolls afterlife corresponds to their beliefs – that they even decided to take on an extra challenge midway through their pre-TES VI Nazeem butchering journey. Ahead of Starfield’s release, the chosen targets were Blades members Delphine and Esbern. For 376 days – that’s just over a year - they both found themselves on the wrong end of Sidek’s bows, swords, and various other tools of the trade, until Bethesda’s much-hyped interstellar adventure blasted off.

Sidek says that maintaining both series at the same time during the period when they overlapped was “much more difficult” than they’d anticipated. “There were some moments when I ran out of ideas, the process of recording the videos ended up taking much longer,” they explain, “Sometimes things went wrong, Delphine and Esbern are essential, so if I forgot something or loaded an old save, the two of them simply didn't die, and I had to go back and record everything again.” “It ended up being much more complicated than I expected at the beginning,” Sidek summarises, “but I liked it, and overall I thought Starfield came out pretty quickly.”

“I'll do it as long as I have to” – inside a Skyrim player’s 1000 day long (so far) quest to kill Nazeem until The Elder Scrolls 6 drops (3)

Possibly unsurprisingly, given how long the wait for it has been and looks like it’ll continue to be, Sidek also says they’ve got “very high expectations” for The Elder Scrolls 6, whenever it arrives to bring their current hobby to a close. “I often read comments from people saying that it's going to be bad, especially after the release of Starfield - which I actually liked, I didn't think it was a 10/10 game, but I had fun - there’s always someone saying that TES VI is going to be the biggest disappointment, but I think differently,” they tell me. “I believe that if they follow the same line as Skyrim, just adapting it to a new region, using the tools available today, the game has enormous potential to even surpass Skyrim. Aaaaaand if the game isn't good, the modders will be able to fix it, just like they always do.”

As for hitting 1000 days of Nazeem killing while they’ve been waiting to see if the game will live up to their hopes for it, Sidek explains that not only did they anticpate their mission potentially lasting this long, but they “no longer have any expectations about the release date”. “Many people say ‘How many years do you think it will take? Do you think it will reach 2000 days?’ And I just don't know,” they tell me.

“Killing Nazeem has become part of my routine, and I'll do it as long as I have to.”

“I'll do it as long as I have to” – inside a Skyrim player’s 1000 day long (so far) quest to kill Nazeem until The Elder Scrolls 6 drops (2024)
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