Even though he is one of the two characters that the player will follow out of Helgen in Skyrim, Hadvar isn’t a character this is focused on all that much, despite the fact that the player’s survival was entirely due to him helping them. While he does return for the Civil War questline if players choose the Imperial Legion, his character arc is fairly limited outside of this.
This means that there isn’t all that much shown about the character at a first glance. The only thing that players can really learn about Hadvar without doing some digging is that he is a part of the Imperial Legion, but there is a lot more to this Nord than meets the eye.
10 He Has Unique Dialogue With Ralof
Right before the player and Hadvar enter Helgen Keep, it is established that the latter and Ralof know each other more deeply than either of them would care to admit in front of their superiors. This is further cemented by them both having come from Riverwood.
In some unused dialogue, however, the pair have some unique interactions if they are in the presence of one another. However, this just amounts to them asking each other why they joined their respective causes.
9 He Will Retire If The Player Switches Sides During The Civil War Questline
During the Civil War questline, the player is tasked with retrieving the Jagged Crown for whichever side they have picked. This is also the last time the player can undo their choice if they are unsatisfied with the side they chose. This is simply done by taking the Jagged Crown and, instead of returning it to the quest giver, giving it to the opposing side’s leader instead.
If the player does this while fighting for the Imperials, therefore switching sides and joining the Stormcloaks instead, Hadvar will apparently retire from duty. He will live out the rest of the game in Riverwood, giving up the fight against his own people permanently.
8 He Reveals Where The Player Character Came From
After reaching Helgen and talking to Hadvar’s uncle Alvor, Hadvar can be talked to in order to learn about the game world. When asking about who Ulfric Stormcloak is, Hadvar will casually reveal that the player character, who was arrested for trying to cross the border into Skyrim, came from Cyrodiil and understands that they might not know who Ulfric was as a result.
This could mean that, rather than being a Nord as the game presents the choice to be, they may instead be an Imperial.
7 He Appears To Want Rikke’s Approval
As General Tullius’s right-hand man, it’s easy to see why a member of the Imperial Legion would look up to Legate Rikke and want to impress them in order to move up the ranks of the Legion. Hadvar seems to fall into this group, as he mentions Rikke a few times in general conversation.
Hadvar specifically talks about her role as his direct superior and that he believes that Rikke is sympathetic towards the Stormcloak’s cause.
6 He Had Nightmares About Bleak Falls Barrow As A Child
Considering how close Bleak Falls Barrow is to Riverwood, it should be no surprise that, as a child, Hadvar had terrible nightmares that a Draugr would come down the mountain and attack him in his sleep.
This wasn’t a legitimate fear at the time, as all of the Draugr inside Bleak Falls Barrow were locked behind a Dragon Claw door until the player opened it. Now that the Dragonstone has been retrieved, there’s a decent chance of that happening to the children of Riverwood.
5 He Left General Tullius At Helgen For The Player
Just after Alduin attempts to burn Haming alive, Hadvar mentions that he needs to find General Tullius to fight back against the dragon before running off to find his superior. Shortly after this, however, he seemingly abandons the fight and runs into Helgen Keep so that he can escort the player to safety.
Although Tullius is also heard yelling for his men to get into the keep, the only other Imperial soldiers seen, at least if the player sides with Hadvar, are crushed under a falling ceiling shortly after entering the keep.
4 He Is Always An Essential Character
When a character in Skyrim is marked as essential, it means that they are required for the progression or initiation of certain questlines and won’t be able to be killed no matter what the Last Dragonborn throws their way. While some characters are temporarily essential, Hadvar is one of the few characters that is always essential and can never die.
In Helgen, both Hadvar and Ralof are essential characters who will not attack the player if they damage them. This makes them the perfect training dummies for leveling up certain skills in the early stages of Skyrim, such as One and Two-Handed, Destruction, Sneak, and Block. The downside is that Hadvar will hate the player until they use a Calm spell on him.
3 He Gets Promoted Before The Civil War Questline
Although it’s never shown on screen, at some point between escaping Helgen and returning to Solitude to regroup with General Tullius, Hadvar is promoted from his previous role and is given a new set of armor.
What his position was before this promotion is never made clear, though his new role has Hadvar in charge of several battles on the front lines. Consequently, his promotion must have been a substantial step up from reading a prisoner’s name from a list.
2 He’s The Only Character Voiced By Jonas Fisch
Many characters in Skyrim have the same voice actors, usually when it comes to minor side characters that may little to no grand significance. Despite being a relatively minor character that can easily be ignored once the player leaves Helgen, Hadvar holds the distinction of being the only character in the game voiced by Jonas Fisch.
This puts Hadvar in the same league as the likes of Alduin, Arngeir, and Serana.
1 He Has A Strange Glitch Involving The Staff Of Magnus
In early versions of Skyrim, as is the case with many other Bethesda titles, there were many unusually glitches that players could come across. One such glitch found on the PS3 version saw Hadvar take possession of the Staff of Magnus, even if the player hadn’t yet completed the College of Winterhold questline, and use it in combat.
Why only Hadvar is affected by this glitch is unclear, but he may have been involved in the questline in earlier versions of the game.