Each of the predefined character classes in Daggerfall offer a unique twist on how one proceeds along the main quest set by your Emperor. The Nightblade is fundamentally different in play than the Healer, yet either is capable of following the story through to conclusion. The aspects of particular interest are the Governing Skills associated with each class, as these fundamentally define that character's options throughout the game. While it is possible to eventually master each of Daggerfall's skills, the skills listed in the table below start much higher than all the character's other skills, and the majority of time spent on the path to mastery will focus on that character's Governing Skills.
Each default class (except the Warrior) begins with several of the advantages and/or disadvantages which are available during custom class creation. These may include weaknesses, resistances, weapon and armor restrictions, and maximum spell points. Hit Points gained per level is determined randomly upon each level-up (the value is modified by Endurance score); maximum gain per level varies with the classes.
According to the game's readme, the Spellsword, Warrior, Battlemage, Knight, and Ranger are among classes that are easier to play, while the Healer, Nightblade, and Bard are for players looking for a challenge.
|Class||Description||Special Traits||Governing Skills|
|Primary Skills||Major Skills||Minor Skills|
|Acrobat||Acrobats practice the thieving arts, and use their remarkable physical skills to aid them. They are very quick, agile, and nimble.||Athleticism, Adrenaline Rush, leather armor only, no shields, no axes. Max gain of 8 HP/level.|
|Archer||Archers are warriors specially trained in the use of the bow.||Expertise with missile weapons, leather or chain armor only, no shields. Max gain of 16 HP/level.|
|Assassin||Assassins are much feared and respected, for they use the night for concealment, and their cunning to strike deadly blows. Even secure locks cannot stay the Assassin's blade.||Leather armor only, no shields, bonus to hit humanoids. Max gain of 12 HP per level.|
|Barbarian||Barbarians are warriors that hail from the harsh lands that fringe more civilized areas. They make excellent fighters, well-suited to survival under the worst conditions.||Immune to poison, leather or chain armor only, no Orcish gear, no Daedric gear. Barbarians have the highest HP gain potential: up to 25 per level.|
|Bard||Bards are the most versatile class, learned in many different arts. They are familiar with weaponry, magic, and the thiefly talents.||1x Intelligence in spell points, leather or chain armor only, no tower shields. Max gain of 8 HP/level.
Starting Spell: Slowfall
|Battlemage||Battlemages use their mastery of magic for combat purposes. They are naturally adept at casting offensive magic spells.||1.75x Intelligence in spell points, leather armor only, no kite/tower shield. Max gain of 10 HP/level.
Starting Spells: Shock, Slowfall, Buoyancy
|Burglar||Burglars are well versed in the arts of picking locks. They can sneak undetected into even the most secure of noble houses and escape detection.||Plate armor only (was probably meant to be the other way around), no shield. Gains up to 8 HP/level.|
|Healer||Healers use their magic to treat injuries and cure illnesses. Their function is primarily defensive in nature.||1.75x intelligence in spell points, rapid healing, leather or chain armor only, no long blades, no axes, no kite/tower shield. Max gain of 8 HP per level.
Starting Spells: Heal, Slowfall, Lock, Bouyancy
|Knight||Knights are trained as warriors. They hail from noble stock, and adhere to the code of chivalry.||Immune to paralysis, no leather armor, no staffs, no Daedric gear. Max gain of 18 HP/level.|
|Mage||Mages are those that devote their lives to the study and practice of the arcane magical arts. An experienced mage can be a deadly force to reckon with.||2x intelligence in spell points, no long blades, no axes, no bows, leather armor only, no shields except buckler. Max HP increase per level is a paltry 6.
Starting Spells: Lock, Shock, Heal, Water Walking, Slowfall
|Monk||Monks are specially trained in mental disciplines. This intense mental awareness includes the ability to turn the body into a lethal machine.||Resist shock, resist magicka, no armors, no shields. Max gain of 14 HP per level.|
|Nightblade||Nightblades use their magic abilities as an aid to subterfuge. The Nightblade is often like a thief with the capability to use magic.||1.5x intelligence in spell points, leather armor only, no shield except buckler. Gains up to 8 HP per level.
Starting Spells: Bouyancy, Chameleon
|Ranger||Rangers are at home in the wilderness, and are excellent hunters. They are very skilled at survival and tracking.||No tower shield. Can gain an impressive 18 HP per level.|
|Rogue||Rogues are trained in both the shadowy arts of the thief, and the combat arts of the warrior.||Leather or chain armor only, no tower shields. Max HP gain is 12 per level.|
|Sorcerer||Sorcerers are quite adept at the manipulation of magic, although they do not generate their own magical energy. Rather, they absorb the energy of spells cast at them, and use this energy to power their own spells.||3x intelligence in spell points, can't regenerate magicka, spell absorption, leather and chain armor only, no shields. HP gain per level is limited to 6.
Starting Spells: Lock, Shock, Heal, Buoyancy, Slowfall
|Spellsword||Spellswords are warriors who are also highly skilled in the use of magic. This dual specialization makes the Spellsword a formidable opponent indeed.||1.5x intelligence in spell points, leather and chain armor only, no tower shields. Gains up to 12 HP per level.
Starting Spells: Shock, Slowfall, Chameleon
|Thief||Thieves are well known for their adeptness in using stealth, speed, and cunning to steal for a living.||No blunt weapons, leather armor only, no shields except buckler. HP increases by a maximum of 10 per level.|
|Warrior||Warriors are those most heavily trained in the arts of combat and warfare. They are adept in the use of many weapons and are often heavily armored.||None. Gains up to 20 HP per level, despite a misprint in the manual claiming they only gain 12.|