Skyrim Quest Walkthrough: The World-Eater’s Eyrie


You must release Odahviing the dragon so he can fly you to Skuldafn temple, where there lies a portal to Sovngarde, the Nord afterlife, where Alduin has retreated following his battle with you to devour the souls of the dead in order to make himself stronger than before, strong enough to defeat you. You must reach him before he becomes too powerful.


In order to free Odahviing, talk to the Whiterun Guard standing on the second floor. Then go and speak to the dragon and he will fly you to Skuldafn temple on his back.


Upon arriving at the temple courtyard, you’ll encounter two dragons, and multiple Draugr Wights and Deathlords. Kill them all, or sneak past them if your Sneak skill is high enough, and enter the temple complex.


First puzzle

The first puzzle you encounter in Skuldafn will require you to open two portcullises. There is a lever nearby that will raise the portcullises, but it is currently not attached to the mechanism. In the upper chamber, there are three pillars with carved animal petroglyphs on them. Examine the two outer pillars first. On the outside of the ceremonial arch structure they are sitting under is a second carving, which is resting in the mouth of a stone head. Move the pillar on the western side so the Whale glyph is facing the chamber’s western side (in the same direction as the carving above the pillar). Move the pillar on the eastern side so the Snake glyph is facing the chamber’s eastern side. The mechanism is now attached.

Before you move the middle pillar, examine the two portcullises. Above each there sits a stone head, and in the mouth of each head is another glyph, partially obscured by the stone crossbeam. The left (northwest) mouth has a Snake. The right (northeast) has a Hawk. Now rotate the middle pillar so that the Snake or the Hawk faces the lever pedestal. Then pull the lever, and the portcullis corresponding to the Snake or Hawk glyph opens. You can have only one of these portcullises open at once. The passageway under the right portcullis leads to a blocked area with a small chest and the one under the left portcullis leads further into the temple.


Second puzzle

You’ll soon come to an iron double door, on the other side of which is a second puzzle chamber. Clear the room of enemies and search the treasure chests before you focus your attention on the animal petroglyphs. Beginning on the ground floor, head east, and walk around the room until you spot a carved head with a Snake glyph inside its mouth. Return to the pillar facing the double doors you entered, and turn it so the Snake faces the doors (west). Ascend to the bridge area above. Locate a second carved head with a Hawk in its mouth. Match that so the Hawk is facing the same direction (outward or to the north) in the alcove underneath this head.

Turn around (to the north), and match the Whale on the pedestal in the opposite alcove with the final head above it. Then pull the lever on the pedestal. This will lower the bridge, allowing you to proceed.


Nordic Puzzle Door

You will shortly come across a Nordic Puzzle Door being guarded by a powerful Draugr. After you kill him, you can take from this corpse the Diamond Claw, an artifact which is the key to exiting this place.

Approach the Nordic Puzzle Door, but first inspect the palm of the Diamond Claw you just took of the corpse of the Draugr. There are three symbols etched into the palm of the claw: a Wolf, a Moth, and a Dragon. These correspond to the symbols on the door’s outer, middle, and inner rings respectively. Align the symbols on the rings of the door to match the appropriate symbols on the claw. This will cause the door to slide down so that you can proceed beyond.


Make sure you learn the Word of Power on the Word Wall in this next area before heading up onto the roof of the temple, because soon you’ll reach the portal to enter the realm of Sovngarde, after which point you won’t ever be able to explore Skuldafn again.


Once you step out onto the roof of the temple, head towards the jet of molten fire roaring into the skies. There is a dragon priest named Nahkriin who is in the process of speaking dragon tongue incantations to close the portal to Sovngarde. There are also two dragons on either side of you.


Engage Nahkriin and the dragons in battle. Slay the two dragons before turning your attention to the priest. Remember to use Dragonrend to bring them down to the ground where they are vulnerable to your attacks. Beware the electrical prowess of the dragon priest; use the arches and stairs as cover from his spell attacks if you need to. After he falls, if he managed to close the portal to Sovngarde before he died, don’t worry, the staff he was carrying will open it again. Also be sure to pick up Nahkriin’s Mask from his corpse as that is useful for the side quest Masks of The Dragon Priests.


Ascend the ceremonial steps. Activate the Dragon Seal at the top of the steps, and jam the shaft of Nahkriin’s staff into the seal’s center. A great plume of fire erupts from a whirling vortex – a gateway to the Aetherius realm, where Alduin cheats death and feeds off the souls of past heroes. Step down into the light to enter Sovngarde…


37 Responses

  1. Toxic says:

    Everytime i free the dragon, ireleth or one of the guards attack him and i cant carry on with the mission… Any Help?

    • Wylf says:

      Make sure your weapon isn’t drawn. I accidentally did that And every one attacked him with a vengeance. It was kinda funny but I had to go back and reload an older save.

  2. Trevor says:

    I had this same problem earlier, try going inside then back out and then “kill” the dragon.

  3. Daniel says:

    im confused aobut the first puzzle :/

  4. Tabitha says:

    Funny story, one of the dragons at the end was either friendly or apathetic. Either way, he didn’t attack me, so I decided to respect that and let him live.

  5. Jim says:

    When I get to the Nord puzzle door it simply will not allow me to activate the rings on the door. What do i do?

    • Erik says:

      Exit the way you came in, turn around and then go back into the Skuldafn Temple. Go back to the door with the rings and try again. Should work this time. Happened to me as well ;-)

      • Roman says:

        have you heard of the key not opening the door once you got the rings right?

        • aizen the says:

          Do them in reverse

          • joe says:

            my game just will not allow me to open the puzzle door! i tried leaving, i tried doing it backwards, nothing is working!what do i do?

          • Ashley says:

            The same thing is happening to me. I’m so mad. I left though the day and came back and I was sooo happy b/c the rings would finally move. When I put the symbols in the correct order or any order at all the key won’t open the door. WHAT DO I DOOO!

    • Shane says:

      you should try taping the rings or reloding it

  6. chad says:

    I got to the third puzzle but when i put in the right rings and try to open it it doesnt open

  7. Gaylen says:

    I got to the nordic puzzle door,have the diamomd claw,did the combo right and the door does’nt open. what now?

  8. Christian says:

    Have the same problem on Nordic puzzle. I have the right combination and still won’t open. Idk what to do I went outside and came back in, still didn’t worked . I tried to load it and still didnt work. Help please

  9. Marcel says:

    Cant get past the first puzzle. Lever doesnt doe anything and middle pillar doesnt move

  10. scott says:

    when i walk onto the top of the tempal there are more than 2 dragons

  11. Luke says:

    when i got up to the 2 dragons and dragon priest i just thought ‘screw it’ and ran through the portal XD

  12. Pablo says:

    I’m at the first puzzle and I tried every combo but the door doesn’t open the only door that opened was the one on the right any help

  13. random says:

    remember before you leave to go to sondgrave you might want to buy as many spell tombs as possible (after you catch the dradon there is a mage inspecting the dragon)

  14. Hakim says:

    why I did not see my dog barbas after I reached Skuldafn with Odahviing? I might need my dog because it might be a hard mission for me.

    • Deadly Daedra says:

      Followers can’t follow you there, I think, because the place was meant for the Dragonborn. And also, I think the Dragon Priest is supposed to be hard for anyone because for the challenge. (I don’t know for sure :3)

  15. Hakim says:

    Is the Dragon Priest hard to kill for someone who is level 24?

  16. Aidy says:

    Thanks so much for the walkthrough. Those puzzles were starting to become a pain in the behind!

  17. Roman says:

    I’m at the nordic door in the world-eater’s eyrie and i have the rings right but the door won’t open, any help???

  18. Dan says:

    Umm I just ducked and walked to the second or third top stair and kept hitting the priest with arrows till he died. He didn’t even attack me and neither did the dragons then I got the staff and activated the portal. Just stay slightly hidden. Maybe it’s because my sneak is high but I’m only level 21.

  19. BAT says:

    Can someone help me with the first part Im confused about the first challenge

  20. d says:

    I just killed the priest, and none of the dragons tried to kill me. So. I left em alone. Best not to stir the pot

  21. Jordan says:

    For the first puzzle i know to turn the whale and snake to their corresponding walls but the middle pillar wont rotate. What do i do?

  22. Dakota says:

    You have to make the sides face the stones

  23. Deadly Daedra says:

    This really helped!!! :) I couldn’t figure out how to get past the first door because there were 3 pillars, but 4 animal pictures.

  24. Ezio says:

    Where is skudafan and iv been there once now I can’t find it

  25. Marvin says:

    To fix the keyhole/ring glich- I went back to the temple, stripped down to a tunic, saved my game, turned off the PS3, loaded the game, keyhole works fine.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

© - Privacy Policy | Affiliate Disclaimer | The Skyrim Blog | Skyrim Coverage | Diablo 3 Walkthrough | Diablo 3 Walkthrough | Pixels To Inches | Virtual Entertainment HeadQuarters