So I'm playing Skyrim for the first time. I want to be a pure mage. Tips?

#11Evil_SandwichPosted 4/30/2013 5:10:25 AM(edited)
FredCat07 posted...

Do not using Armors, cloth is your best bet to help fighting back in the Mage Walkthrough.


Lol, TC don't listen to this.

You can use armor on a Mage and still destroy everything, game's easy.

Plus there are even in-game mages who wear armor (Serana wears light armor and J'zargo has 100 Heavy Armor Skill IIRC).

However, If you DO plan to use armor I reccommend starting off using robes first at lower levels THEN swap to armor later when you've maxed out Enchanting (reason being you can put cost redux Enchantments on your Armor).

With 100 Enchanting and all the perks up the middle path you can get 25% cost redux on one item, put it on 4 pieces and you'll have 100% cost redux (Destruction is really the only magic school you need to do this for though).
#12LockeadonPosted 4/30/2013 6:34:13 AM
tizimin9 posted...
Lockeadon posted...
deleted for space



^ Writes indepth, detailed report on why Destruction is not as powerful in the end-game

^TC only wanted a few tips on starting out a mage.


Don't neglect your ALTERATION!

If you want to level sneak and illusion (goes well with vampirism, Khajit, Dark Elves, Wood Elves, High Elves, Argonians,), always remember to use muffle before you sneak.

If you're going sneak-mage, silent casting is a much, which is found in the Illusion tree.

Don't Neglect your ALTERATION! Level that before anything else, always use it before every single fight against melee enemies or archers, which is most of the fights. Unless every single enemy you're fighting is a spellcaster, mage armor spells are pretty much mandatory.

Level Alteration and Enchanting before anything else, start collecting as many soul gems as you can, go exploring, find Dwarven ruins, soul trap every single creature (Falmer) you come across.

If you use muffle before every sneaking sequence, use mage armor before every combat sequence, and soul trap every creature you fight, you'll be leveling three skills with very little effort.


wards in resto will help against enemy mages and completely absorb dragonbreath, and they also add to your ac while they are up, making them useful against physical attacks as well. only downside is they are pretty expencive to maintain over the course of a battle.

personally i prefer illusion to alteration for crowd control but para (and mass para) can be useful to stop enemies in their traps for an extended period so its good for that. but unlike illusion once you have the right perks, paralyze doesn't work on everything.

also, take advantage of alchemy. there are some really useful effects in there and even some unique ones like slow and weakness to magic/element. just as one example you can use invisibility potions to turn invisible for longer than the spell lasts, and doing it that way saves magicka for other things. you can use the potions to turn invisible mid-battle if you get flanked or surrounded or just taking too much damage. you can also use it with muffle to scout ahead and plan your offence or to cast master spells without being targetted. and thats just one effect. a mage has unrivaled versitility and a creative or artistic one can do nearly anything and do it with style,

i dunno if things like pickpocket sneak or such go against your idea of a mage, but you can use them to great effect as one, especially if you dont want to use weapons at all, pickpocket allows for an alternative means for applying poisons to your foes. and given there are several poisons that can help a mage immensely it would be a shame to pass them up. things like weakness to poison, magic, or a given element are a godsend to mages and slow can be great for making dangerous/fast enemies far less of a threat.

as far as shouts go slow time is very useful to a mage as is aura whisper ice form and throw voice. throw voice can be useful to lure enemies into the range of your spells (or just into the open), especially the aoe ones.
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#13RikiazPosted 4/30/2013 7:12:51 AM
King_of_Now posted...
The problem with Destruction is that it is the only damaging skill that does not scale with your level. Early on it's really good, but falls off as you start to level


You do realize it has been like this in every single ES game, right?
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#14FredCat07Posted 4/30/2013 7:17:32 AM
nytecrawla posted...
Bear in mind that there is no spell failure chance in Skyrim, so if you wanted to, you could very easily wear armor. Not advocating for or against it, but just letting you know that it is an option in this game.


You still can failing the Spell cast, only if you tried to casting with your magic running out OR got attacked with a power attack from your opponent.

Evil_Sandwich posted...
FredCat07 posted...

Do not using Armors, cloth is your best bet to help fighting back in the Mage Walkthrough.


Lol, TC don't listen to this.

You can use armor on a Mage and still destroy everything, game's easy.

Plus there are even in-game mages who wear armor (Serana wears light armor and J'zargo has 100 Heavy Armor Skill IIRC).

However, If you DO plan to use armor I reccommend starting off using robes first at lower levels THEN swap to armor later when you've maxed out Enchanting (reason being you can put cost redux Enchantments on your Armor).

With 100 Enchanting and all the perks up the middle path you can get 25% cost redux on one item, put it on 4 pieces and you'll have 100% cost redux (Destruction is really the only magic school you need to do this for though).


You're correct, for most of the time that player went dual-fighting, but this is for Pure Mage - which don't necessary to wearing Armor, just robe and you're good. If you want to increase your protection, cast some Alteration spell, like any kind of flesh (Oakflesh, Ironflesh, and so on). Oakflesh is low level that increase your Armor Ration by 40 for 60 seconds.
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#15XXXFLUFFPosted 4/30/2013 7:20:37 AM
SPOILERS!!!!!

There is a place called Ironbind Barrow. At the end of this place is a weapon with an enchantment - Fiery Soul Trap.

From Whiterun, head north up the East side of Whiterun. Go straight north past the first set of mountains until you come to a second set. Turn slightly east and walk up into the mountains and you should stumble across Ironbind Barrow.

Go in, and when you get to the end look for a War axe, it should be stored on the back of the throne, but I have found it 30 feet off the floor, dangling in mid-air. Beware the huge 8-legged creepy thingy, it can be quite tough.

Break the weapon on an Enchanting Table and put the Fiery Soul Trap in a bow and a melee weapon. It gives Soul Trap and +10 Fire Damage. Turn the power down to minimum (1 second Soul Trap) to maximise uses.

You will be able to trap souls at distance and close range and you will have one of the most powerful early-game enchantments.

This should be mandatory for any new character.
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#16XXXFLUFFPosted 4/30/2013 7:22:26 AM
Plus it makes hunting deer really fun!
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#17silverhunter16Posted 4/30/2013 7:38:34 AM
Illusion is one of the most powerful magic schools in this game but it's also very perk dependent so it's kind of all or nothing. Aspect of Tear is glitched and makes fire spells 10-15 points stronger. Vampires also get a 25% boost in illusion magic.

Conjuration lets you summon powerful allies that are unaffected by the difficulty setting so they're useful on all of them.

Alteration has paralysis and, if you use robes, mage armor spells. It also provides magic resistance and spell absorption.

Restoration has healing, turn undead, and wards to block magic attacks. The necromage perk affects vampire characters and makes all magical effects (both positive and negative) stronger, some spells last longer and are generally stronger than normal.

Destruction is the main form of damage. They have high spell costs and require some management but have stun locking capabilities, speed and range.

Some spells are gimped and don't get boosted by the augmented perks and the master frost spell, blizzard, gets weaker the more magic/frost resistance you have so Nords, Vampires and Bretons are unable to make as full use of it as other races.

Fire spells stack so they a generally more powerful than frost and shock spells. Frost magic is resisted by most enemies but drains stamina so they can't preform as many power attacks and can potentially 'freeze' enemies with the deep freeze perk. Shock spells travel instantly and drain magic from enemies making them ideal for combating mages or fast moving targets like dragons although the range is shorter than other spells.

Enchanting helps to manage the cost of spells.

Alchemy helps boost spell effectiveness, although not a magic school itself.

Think that's everything really.
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#18nytecrawlaPosted 4/30/2013 7:47:15 AM(edited)
When I talk about chance of spell failure, I mean from explicitly wearing armor, like what you had in Oblivion. Pure Mage also doesn't mean no armor. Honestly, you'd have to be pretty dumb to not wear armor in this case, considering that you can use magicka for other things when you don't have to worry about keeping some random armor spell up. Since armor doesn't take damage or break anymore you can just wear it once and forget about it. Efficiency is the name of the game when it comes to magic, and wasting time, perks, magicka and effort casting shield type spells vs just wearing armor reeks of inefficiency.

Not to mention you get the added benefit of armor and enchanting slots when you wear it vs just getting the enchantment slots without it.

I just went ahead and violated my no arguing for or against it rule too. Ah well.

Edit: Don't neglect restoration as a form of damage vs undead, which are pretty much everywhere in this game. Those spells from Dawnguard really pack a punch for what they cost to cast, and most undead have resistances to the traditional Frost, Fire or Shock.
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#19Dynasty3(Topic Creator)Posted 4/30/2013 11:34:48 AM
So enchanting is like alchemy and smithing? I haven't come across an enchanting table just yet (or if I have, I haven't noticed). So I have to level it up by doing it a lot?

This is all kind of overwhelming, but thanks guys.
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#20LockeadonPosted 4/30/2013 11:42:54 AM
Dynasty3 posted...
So enchanting is like alchemy and smithing? I haven't come across an enchanting table just yet (or if I have, I haven't noticed). So I have to level it up by doing it a lot?

This is all kind of overwhelming, but thanks guys.


enchanting tables look like

http://uesp.net/wiki/Skyrim:Arcane_Enchanters

there are some in dungeons and most cities will have one in the court mage's quarters and of course the mages college has several as well.
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everytime i think i've seen it all...
someone does something stupider