Character Guide by arbysee

Version: 1.1 | Updated: 02/10/14 | Printable Version

Skyrim Legendary Character Developing Guide

10 February 2014
Version 1.1 - Added legendary skill tree explanation and recommendations
Version 1.0 - Initial character developing guide for creating a character 
building plan
Bob Cameron

Copyright 2013-2014 Cameron Technology Solutions

This may be not be reproduced under any circumstances except for personal, 
private use. This document may not be placed on any web site or otherwise 
distributed publicly without advance written permission. Use of this guide on 
any other web site or as a part of any public display is strictly prohibited, 
and a violation of copyright.

About the Author:
My day job is training software managers and teams transition from a command 
and control development style into self-organized teams using Scrum and 
eXtreme Programming (XP).  I also help companies that have many agile teams 
coordinate self-organized teams using the Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe).
1.	Introduction	3
1.1	Skyrim Legendary Character Building	3
1.2	Breton Sample Skills by Tree	3
1.3	Non-Breton Legendary Sample Skills by Tree	6
1.4	Skills by Level Approach	6
1.5	Breton Skills by Level	7
1.6	Non-Breton Skills By Level	9
1.7	Legendary Skills and Perks Beyond Level 81	11
1.8	Leveling Tips	12
2.	Races	12
2.1	Constant Effects	13
2.2	60 Second Power	13
2.3	Preferred Races	13
3.	Followers	13
4.	Marriage	15
5.	Training	16
6.	Skills and Perks	17
6.01	Alchemy	17
6.01.1	Potions and Farming	17
6.01.2	Alchemy Perks	18
6.02	Alteration	19
6.03	Archery	20
6.04	Block	20
6.05	Conjuration	21
6.06	Destruction	22
6.07	Enchanting	23
6.08	Heavy Armor	25
6.09	Illusion	26
6.10	Light Armor	26
6.11	Lock Picking	26
6.12	One Handed	27
6.13	Pick Pocket	27
6.14	Restoration	27
6.15	Smithing	28
6.16	Sneak	29
6.17	Speech	29
6.18	Two Handed Weapons	30
7	Conclusion	30

1.	Introduction

Since Skyrim has come out, I have spent thousands of hours playing Skyrim 
designing, re-designing and then restarting Skyrim again.  This guide targets 
both new and experienced players playing Skyrim Legendary which includes the 
official expansions Dragonborn, Hearthfire and Dawnguard.  The Legendary 
edition is available wherever the original edition used to be available. This 
guide does not include the plugins beyond those packaged in the Skyrim 
Legendary edition. Elder Scrolls Anthology includes Skyrim Legendary and the 
previous games from the Elder Scroll series (Oblivion, Morrowind, etc.). For 
new players, the guide tries to supply enough information to reduce 
restarting after discovering more about how the game plays and identify some 
places to visit early.  Another goal is to level up without having to grind 
your skills.  Grinding a skill is when your character stops playing the game 
and starts repeating a game activity to improve a game skill.  For 
experienced Skyrim players, this guide may point out some places to visit 
early and will hopefully influence Skyrim character development for at least 
one game.  The guide has some spoilers, but is not a walkthrough.  The build 
plan described below is a good plan, but the point of the guide is to provide 
a strategy to build your own plan.

This guide takes a different approach than other guides in that the goal is 
to create a framework to map out different Skyrim leveling plans and survive 
on the most difficult game settings.  There are already many good guides for 
character builds including the official strategy guide and Skyrim web sites 
that contain more details such as  
Many of the guides do not account for the standard expansions that are now 
bundled with Skyrim or the higher difficulty levels.  This guide suggests a 
legendary character building strategy that will hopefully minimize your time 
grinding skills and help survive and excel on the legendary difficulty level.

1.1	Skyrim Legendary Character Building

The Skyrim Legendary character building guide builds a character building 
framework creating a character who encounters everything, can do all of the 
quests, and maximizes skills working in the Skyrim universe and minimizes 
time grinding skills.  When the game first came out, there was a level limit 
of 81, so the leveling guide shown is for the first 81 levels. For the 
impatient, try one the character perk plans below.

1.2	Breton Sample Skills by Tree

Race: Breton (25 percent magic resistance, dragon skin)

Perks by skill:

	Alchemy (9):     Alchemist 1-5, Physician, Benefactor, Poisoner,
                       Concentrated Poison

	Alteration (7):  Novice Alteration, Alteration Dual Casting,
                       Magic Resistance 1 and 2, Apprentice, Adept, Stability

	Archery (8):     Overdraw 1-5, Eagle Eye, Power Shot, Quick Shot

	Block (0):       None

	Conjuration (4): Novice Conjuration, Necromancy, Dark Souls, Twin Souls

	Destruction (5): Novice Destruction, Augmented Shock 1 and 2,
                       Augmented Frost 1 and 2

	Enchanting (10): Enchanter 1-5, Insightful, Fire, Frost, Storm,
                       Extra Effect

	Heavy Armor (0): None

	Illusion (6):    Novice Illusion, Illusion Dual Casting, Animage,
                       Kindred Mage, Quiet Casting, Master of Mind

	Light Armor (4): Agile Defender (1), Custom Fit, Unhindered,
                       Wind Walker

	Lock Picking (0): None

	One Handed (10): Armsman 1-5, Fighting Stance, Dual Flurry 1-2,
                       Dual Savagery, Savage Strike

	Pick Pocket (0): None

	Restoration (3): Novice Restoration, Regeneration, Necromage

	Smithing (6): Steel, Elven, Advanced, Arcane Blacksmith, Glass, Dragon

	Sneak (8):    Stealth 1, Backstab, Muffled Movement, Deadly Aim,
                    Light Foot, Silent Roll, Silence, Shadow Warrior

	Speech (0):   None

	Two Handed (0): None

Using the plan above, training can ignore block, heavy armor, lock picking, 
pickpocket, speech and two handed weapons.  Whatever plan is used, knowing 
which skill trees to ignore will help decide what to train and what not to 
train. Reasons to ignore block include a preference for dual wielding over 
blocking and to have one less skill tree to maintain.  Light Armor is both 
lighter than heavy armor and provides a perk to restore stamina quicker.  
Lock picking takes some practice, but eventually any lock can be picked 
without spending perks.  Pickpocket is nice for the extra pockets perk 
allowing your character to carry 100 more, but at the cost of three perks and 
another skill tree to maintain.  With the Hearthfire expansion, money is not 
an issue somewhere around level 15, so speech is not critical for very long.  
Two handed weapons are heavier and slower than one handed weapons.  Dual 
wielding one handed weapons also means attacking with two enchanted weapons 
instead of one.

Please alter your skill plan by your preferences.  Selecting which perks and 
skills to improve is part of the fun of the game.  Whatever your list, break 
down the skills by level to prevent having to grind skills later in the game.

1.3	Non-Breton Legendary Sample Skills by Tree

When playing a race other than Breton, reaching a magic resistance of 85% 
requires either carrying a shield or wearing magic resistant jewelry.  Magic 
resistant jewelry is a good choice for Dark Elf (50% fire resistant) or Nord 
(50% frost resistant), as jewelry piece resistant to the other two elements 
will raise enough resistance quickly in the game.  Another approach is to 
give up on dual wielding and carry a magic resistant shield using 3 block 
perks instead of the 3 one hand dual wielding perks.  Magic resistance 
alteration perks are not really needed with a shield.  The 2 additional perks 
available from not using the Magic resistance will be replaced by additional 
block perks block runner and shield charge.

1.4	Skills by Level Approach

Using the recommended perks and organizing them by level requirements, fast 
track two or three skill trees at a time while slowly leveling the other 
skill trees to keep up with your current level.  The recommended skill tree 
groups to fast track in order are:
1)	Alchemy and Enchanting

2)	Smithing, Conjuration and Restoration

Increasing alchemy in the first group improves attack, defense and every 
skill.  With the Hearthfire expansion, alchemy is also the easiest skill tree 
to improve. Finally, the Dragonborn expansion will allow resetting a skill 
tree to develop your player level beyond 81. Enchanting eventually leads to 
the "Extra Effect" perk which allows two enchantments on each item.

When training and leveling, the first set of skills will need to stay at more 
than twice the character level to stay on plan.  If the first set of skill is 
alchemy and enchanting, the first set of skill can stay ahead of plan without 
any training, but will require purchasing soul gems for enchanting.

The second group of skills includes smithing, which affects everything made 
and improved.  Smithing is in the second skill tree group to avoid grinding 
skills.  The other skills in group increase the level of dead thrall's that 
can be raised to 50, and increases the number of dead thrall's that can be 
raised to 2.  Dead thrall's have a limit of level 50 NPC's, but there are 
many good NPC's to choose from limited to level 50.

The second set of skills is more likely to need training in order to keep up 
with the plan.  Restoration in particular requires taking damage before 
practicing, so if restoration is in the plan second skill set, prepare to 
train restoration skill.

Meanwhile, there needs to be a balance including all used skills to survive 
on legendary difficulty.  Improving from level 15 or 20 to level 100 can't be 
done without leveling up, so the recommendation is to improve most perks on 
the odd numbered levels, and the fast track perks on the even levels.
1.5	Breton Skills by Level

With the Breton perks and strategy outlined above this leads to the following 
perk leveling plan with missions to visit notes for early levels:

Breton Leveling Plan:

Player          Skill
Level    Tree   Level   Perk                     Notes
 1        -       -      -               Hold ingredients until level 2
 2       Alc      1     Alchemist (1)    Mix Potions.  Add Faendal as a
                                         Follower.  Visit the Whiterun Jarl.
 3       Smi      1     Steel Smithing   Join All Guilds
 4       Enc      1     Enchanter (1)
 5       Sne      1     Stealth (1)
 6       Alc     20     Alchemist (2)    Bleak Falls Barrow
 7       Arc      1     Overdraw (1)     Dragon Rising
 8       Alc     20     Physician        Keep Smithing at 2 x Level
 9       One      1     Armsman (1)      Book of Love
10       Enc     20     Enchanter (2)    Keep Restoration at 1.5 x Level
11       Lig      1     Agile Defender(1)Keep Conjure at 2 x Level
12       Alc     30     Benefactor       Build Falkreath House.
13       Res      1     Novice Restoration
14       Alc     30     Poisoner         Mix and Use Paralyze Poisons
15       Con      1     Novice Conjuration
16       Enc     30     Fire Enchanter   Start Training As Needed
17       Ill      1     Novice Illusion
18       Alc     40     Alchemist (3)
19       Alt      1     Novice Alteration
20       Enc     40     Enchanter (3)
21       Des      1     Novice Destruction
22       Enc     40     Frost Enchanter
23       Arc     20     Overdraw (2)
24       Enc     50     Insightful Enchanter
25       One     20     Armsman (2)
26       Enc     50     Storm Enchanter
27       Res     20     Regeneration
28       Alc     60     Alchemist (4)
29       One     20     Fighting Stance
30       Alc     60     Concentrated Poison
31       Alt     20     Alteration Dual Casting
32       Enc     60     Enchanter (4)
33       Ill     20     Illusion Dual Casting
34       Alc     80     Alchemist (5)
35       Ill     20     Animage
36       Enc     80     Enchanter (5)
37       Alt     25     Apprentice Alteration
38       Enc    100     Extra Effect        Dual Enchant Jewelry
39       Lig     30     Custom Fit
40       Smi     30     Elven Smithing      Dual Enchant Elven Items
41       Alt     30     Magic Resistance (1)
42       Con     40     Necromancy
43       Des     30     Augmented Shock (1)
44       Smi     50     Advanced Armors
45       Arc     30     Augmented Frost (1)
46       Smi     50     Arcane Blacksmith
47       Arc     30     Eagle Eye
48       Smi     70     Glass Smithing
49       Sne     30     Muffled Movement
50       Res     70     Necromage
51       Sne     30     Backstab
52       Con     70     Dark Souls
53       One     30     Dual Flurry (1) 
54       Smi    100     Dragon Armor
55       Sne     40     Deadly Aim
56       Con    100     Twin Souls
57       Arc     40     Overdraw (3)
58       One     40     Armsman (3)
59       Ill     40     Kindred Mage
60       Sne     40     Light Foot
61       Sne     40     Magic Resistance (2)
62       Arc     50     Power Shot
63       One     50     Dual Flurry (2)
64       Ill     50     Quiet Casting
65       Lig     50     Unhindered
66       One     50     Savage Strike
67       Sne     50     Silent Roll
68       Alt     50     Adept Alteration
69       Des     60     Augmented Shock (2)
70       Des     60     Augmented Frost (2)
71       Arc     60     Overdraw (4)
72       One     60     Armsman (4)
73       Lig     60     Wind Walker
74       Sne     70     Silence
75       Arc     70     Quick Shot
76       Alt     70     Stability
77       One     70     Dual Savagery
78       Arc     80     Overdraw (5)
79       One     80     Armsman (5)
80       Ill     90     Master of Mind
81       Sne    100     Shadow Warrior

Using the plan above, keep an eye on smithing, restoration and conjure 
skills. The second set of skills needs to keep smithing skill about twice the 
character level starting at level 8.  Eorlund Grey-Mane in Whiterun is a 
master trainer who can help train to level 90. Restoration needs to stay 
around one and a half times the character level until reaching restoration 
level 70, so start watching restoration at level 10.  Colette Marence in the  
in the mages guild can train restoration to level 70. Conjure starts at level 
20 with a Breton, so somewhere around level 10 start monitoring conjure 
skill.  If playing a race other than Breton (starting with skill 15), start 
watching conjuration at level 8.  Falion is the master conjure trainer and 
has a house / store in Morthal
1.6	Non-Breton Skills By Level

Swapping in the block perks for dual wielding and magic resistance also 
brings decisions of where to insert the block perks.  Re-using the fast track 
skill trees, the change ripples throughout the plan as shown below.  Both the 
Breton and Non-Breton plans reach maximum magic resistance at level 61.  
Bretons could also use this plan which acquires 6 perks at skill level 100.

Non-Breton Leveling Plan:

Player          Skill
Level    Tree   Level   Perk                     Notes
 1        -       -      -               Hold ingredients until level 2
 2       Alc      1     Alchemist (1)    Mix Potions.  Add Faendal as a
                                         Follower.  Visit the Whiterun Jarl.
 3       Smi      1     Steel Smithing   Join All Guilds
 4       Enc      1     Enchanter (1)
 5       Sne      1     Stealth (1)
 6       Alc     20     Alchemist (2)    Bleak Falls Barrow
 7       Arc      1     Overdraw (1)     Dragon Rising
 8       Alc     20     Physician        Conjure and/or Smithing at 2x Level
 9       One      1     Armsman (1)      Book of Love
10       Enc     20     Enchanter (2)    Restoration at 1.5x Level
11       Lig      1     Agile Defender(1)
12       Alc     30     Benefactor       Build Falkreath House
13       Blo      1     Shield Wall (1)
14       Alc     30     Poisoner         Mix and Use Paralyze Poisons
15       Res      1     Novice Restoration
16       Enc     30     Fire Enchanter
17       Con      1     Novice Conjuration
18       Alc     40     Alchemist (3)
19       Ill      1     Novice Illusion
20       Enc     40     Enchanter (3)
21       Alt      1     Novice Alteration
22       Enc     40     Frost Enchanter
23       Des      1     Novice Destruction
24       Enc     50     Insightful Enchanter
25       Arc     20     Overdraw (2)
26       Enc     50     Storm Enchanter
27       One     20     Armsman (2)
28       Alc     60     Alchemist (4)
29       Res     20     Regeneration
30       Alc     60     Concentrated Poison
31       One     20     Fighting Stance
32       Enc     60     Enchanter (4)
33       Alt     20     Alteration Dual Casting
34       Alc     80     Alchemist (5)
35       Ill     20     Illusion Dual Casting
36       Enc     80     Enchanter (5)
37       Ill     20     Animage
38       Enc    100     Extra Effect        Dual Enchant Jewelry
39       Alt     25     Apprentice Alteration
40       Smi     30     Elven Smithing      Dual Enchant Elven Items
41       Lig     30     Custom Fit
42       Con     40     Necromancy
43       Des     30     Augmented Shock (1)
44       Smi     50     Advanced Armors
45       Arc     30     Augmented Frost (1)
46       Smi     50     Arcane Blacksmith
47       Arc     30     Eagle Eye
48       Smi     70     Glass Smithing
49       Sne     30     Muffled Movement
50       Res     70     Necromage
51       Sne     30     Backstab
52       Con     70     Dark Souls
53       Blo     30     Deflect Arrows
54       Smi    100     Dragon Armor
55       Sne     40     Deadly Aim
56       Con    100     Twin Souls
57       Arc     40     Overdraw (3)
58       One     40     Armsman (3)
59       Ill     40     Kindred Mage
60       Sne     40     Light Foot
61       Blo     50     Elemental Protection
62       Arc     50     Power Shot
63       Ill     50     Quiet Casting
64       Lig     50     Unhindered
65       One     50     Savage Strike
66       Sne     50     Silent Roll
67       Alt     50     Adept Alteration
68       Des     60     Augmented Shock (2)
69       Des     60     Augmented Frost (2)
70       Arc     60     Overdraw (4)
71       One     60     Armsman (4)
72       Lig     60     Wind Walker
73       Sne     70     Silence
74       Arc     70     Quick Shot
75       Alt     70     Stability
76       Blo     70     Block Runner
77       Arc     80     Overdraw (5)
78       One     80     Armsman (5)
79       Ill     90     Master of Mind
80       Sne    100     Shadow Warrior
81       Blo    100     Shield Charge

Which skills are selected is not as important as having a plan to create the 
desired character to guide training and leveling decisions.  Note that using 
a shield instead of dual wielding and magic resistance keeps the plan the 
same until about level 13, but the plans diverge after that.

1.7	Legendary Skills and Perks Beyond Level 81

Patch 1.9 introduced legendary skills, which allow characters to reset a 
skill tree to level 15, redistribute perks and develop the skill tree again.  
Rebuilding a skill tree is useful because legendary skills allow developing a 
character beyond level 81. Leveling or re-leveling a skill increases your 
experience to increase your character level.  The 3 crafting skills: Alchemy, 
Enchanting and Smithing create a leveling engine to potentially acquire all 
perks.  Each crafting skill gets a 20% experience bonus when a different 
Guardian Stone is activated plus a 10% to 15% experienced bonus depending on 
if you are married or not after taking an hour nap.  A few notes about making 
crafting skills legendary:

-	Alchemy: Activate the Thief stone before mixing potions.  The Alchemy 
skill combined with Hearthfire farming ingredients quickly.  Invest in 
Alchemy perks.

-	Enchanting: Activate the Mage stone before enchanting.  Enchant a ring, 
necklace, gloves, circlet and Falmer helmet with Alchemy skill before 
resetting the enchanting skill.

-	Smithing: Activate the Warrior stone before smithing.  The first pass 
through the smithing skill tree recommended the light armor path.  After 
the first pass, try alternating which perk tree branch to follow so that 
all ingots are used.  Bows are generally the most valuable for the amount 
of materials used.  Stockpile Dwarven ingots for a second pass through the 
smithing tree.

Legendary skills will make perks available before a perk is available for a 
particular skill tree.  When this happens, have a few skill trees in mind.  
If either skill tree plan above is used, try:

-	Additional archery and/or melee weapon perks: Improve primary weapons

-	Conjuration: Mystic Binding and Soul Stealer: Summon a soul trap weapon 
instead of carrying one

-	Restoration: Respite, Recovery, Avoid Death: Nice to have

-	Pickpocket: Light Fingers, Night Thief, Extra Pockets: Carry an extra 100

1.8	Leveling Tips

Characters except high elves start the game with 100 magicka, 100 health, and 
100 stamina.  High elves start with 150 magicka.  Each time your character 
levels up, your character can level up magicka, health or stamina.  The 
enchanting system can reduce the magicka cost to cast any spell to 0 if 
wearing the right sets of enchanted armor, helmets, rings and necklaces.  
With good enchanting each item can reduce magicka cost by 29 percent.  
Carrying only extra sets of rings and necklaces, a character can reduce the 
cost of four magic schools by 86 percent instead of two schools reduced to 0. 
Stamina is used when running or using weapons, so stamina needs to increase, 
but not too fast.  Health is used to stay alive.  Staying alive is highly 
recommended.  With this in mind, try leveling up at a ratio of 3 health, 1 
stamina, and 1 magicka.
The third set of skills are generally looking to stay about the same level as 
the player level until player level reaches 77 or 78.
2.	Races

All races are playable in Skyrim.  As far as game dialog goes, there seem to 
be two races: Nord and not Nord.  The game will have friendlier dialog with 

For a Legendary character build, all races are not the same.  All races 
except Orcs come with a constant effect.  All races except Nords come with a 
60 second power (the Nord power lasts 30 seconds).

2.1	Constant Effects

In my opinion, there is one constant effect that is better than the rest: 25 
percent magic resistance.  This is the Breton constant effect.  Magicka is 
used by powerful dragons and some spell casters.  Fortunately, magic 
resistance is not needed often.  When magicka resistance is needed, an 
enchanted ring and necklace can make your character reach maximum magicka 
resistance for fire and frost, which are the only two magic forms that 
dragons use.  The worst constant effect is the Orc, which does not have a 
constant effect.  While constant effects seem more useful than 60 second 
powers, in reality, constant effects are used about once a day, but sometimes 
for more than 60 seconds at a time.

2.2	60 Second Power

Also in my opinion, the best 60 second power is the Orc power: take 50 
percent damage and give an extra 100 percent damage.  This is a power that 
stacks with other powers or potions and comes in handy in the middle game 
when opponents are a little more powerful than your character.  When playing 
Skyrim, the Dragons rarely kill, and almost never kill after enchanting a 
fire/frost resistance ring and necklace.  The tough enemies to handle tend to 
be the boss characters not easily attacked from a distance with an arrow, 
magic or voice attacks.

2.3	Preferred Races

For the Legendary build, maximum magic resistance requiring no enchanted 
jewelry or armor makes the Breton the best race for playing on the legendary 
difficulty level. The Breton is the only race that can maximize magic 
resistance without using magic resistance enchantments, freeing the 
enchantment slots for other abilities.  Also play as an Orc at least once 
using the shield skill tree plan.


When playing on the easy levels, followers are helpful to carry loot from 
adventures, but can hinder your sneak ability and get in your way when 
moving.  On the legendary difficulty level, enemies and followers start 
significantly more powerful than your character making followers more 
important for survival on early levels.  Followers need to become the primary 
target in battles because followers are leveled similar to enemies, but your 
character is not leveled like the enemies.

Detailed information about followers can be found at  There are some things to know 
about followers.  First, follower levels match with your character level up 
to a character specific maximum.  Skyrim with expansions has 4 followers who 
do not have a maximum level: J'zargo (Mages Guild), Caleann (Dawnguard), 
Durak (Dawnguard) and Ingjard (Dawnguard).  The Dawnguard followers can also 
be Blades who will join quests attacking dragons. The Dawnguard followers can 
also be stewards who in addition to helping run a house built, will help when 
attacked at your built house.  Other important followers are dark brotherhood 
initiates.  The initiates have a maximum level of 100.  Using a dark 
brotherhood initiate when recruiting Serana from Dawnguard allows having two 

Creatures are also followers.  The highest level creature follower is 
Vigilance, which is a dog that can be purchased at the Markarth Stables.  
Vigilance has a maximum level of 50.

Another set of followers to consider are followers who are also trainers.  
Followers who are trainers are paid for training, but then your character can 
"trade some things" with the follower to take the gold back.  In general, 
trainer followers are companions.  One exception is Faendal in Riverwood.  
Faendal is an archery trainer follower who has a house and some equipment in 
his house and is a good first follower.  Faendal has a maximum level of 30, 
so switch to another follower by level 30 at the latest.  If playing on the 
legendary difficulty level, do NOT use free archery training (or any 
training) to increase your archery level higher than your current player 
level.  Free archery training can raise your character archery to level 50 
and player to level 8.  A high archery and player level enables almost all 
enemies to one or two hit kill your character until your other skills, 
equipment, etc. catch up.  Archery will level fast enough without the free 

Another follower benefit comes when asking your follower to pick up a skill 
book (identified as books valued over 50 gold). A follower can pick up the 
book and trade the book to your character without your character reading the 
book.  Delaying reading a book until reaching a higher skill level is helpful 
latter in the game.  Some followers can be married.

4.	Marriage

Marriage in Skyrim has many practical advantages.  Your spouse will open a 
store allowing your character to buy and sell items at home to your spouse.  
Your spouse's store will also provide 100 gold per day when your character 
asks if the store has made any money.  Some spouses have houses.  Another 
advantage is that sleeping where your spouse is receives the lover's comfort 
bonus.  The bonus increases all skill tree experience gained by 15 percent 
for 8 hours of game time.  If your spouse is your follower, using bed rolls 
located at many quest locations enables gaining experience faster.  Marrying 
someone who is not a follower and fast traveling to another location 
frequently simulates more than 8 hours of game time.  The faster experience 
leads me to recommend marrying a follower.  Before your character can marry 
someone, your character has to wear an amulet of Mara, and do something to 
gain the potential spouse's favor.  

The maximum level of followers that can be married is 50.  There are several 
housecarl and circle companion member followers who can advance to level 50.  
The circle companion followers are also trainers: Aela the Huntress (expert 
archery), Farkas (master heavy armor) and Vilkas (master two handed).  Since 
Aela is the only follower who trains in a skill tree that the plan is not 
ignoring, Aela seems the most practical of the companion followers to marry.  
Aela is an archer with one handed weapon, light armor and sneak skills.  The 
issue with marrying companions is that your character cannot marry them until 
after completing all of the companion quests.

For the housecarls, your character must become thane of a hold, and then win 
their favor.  Early in the game, the gold from your spouse's store helps the 
finance issue until building the Falkreath house.  The first available 
housecarl to marry is Lydia from Whiterun.  To win her favor, your character 
must do the main quest Dragon Rising (fight a dragon with help), and purchase 
a house in Whiterun for 5000 gold.  With the plan above, your character can 
usually marry Lydia somewhere around level 10 or 11.  Housecarls have heavy 
armor, archery, one handed and block skills.

A third follower candidate worth mentioning is Uthgerd the Unbroken.  To win 
her favor, your character must best her in a bar fight in Whiterun.  On lower 
difficulty levels, fighting is reasonable to attempt when first entering 
Whiterun.  On the legendary level, your character will need potions and will 
need to have defeated Gian the Fist in the Ratway while joining the Thieves 
guild to pick up his Gloves of the Pulgist.  Uthgerd comes with a house in 
Whiterun, but has a maximum level of 30.  

Marrying Uthgerd is recommended to get married follower benefits the 
earliest.  If looking to marry a follower who can reach level 50, Lydia is 
recommended.  Marrying Lydia or Uthgerd before building your house will also 
help gain smithing experience faster while building and furnishing your 

5.	Training

There are some lessons about training that are not obvious the first time 
playing Skyrim.  The first lesson is to use an upper limit training skill 
trees that are not fast tracking up to your current level on the master and 
legendary difficulty level.  Your character may need to train the skills that 
are fast tracking beyond your current level to meet your planned 
requirements. In general, accelerating alchemy and enchanting does not 
require trainers.  Smithing, alteration, conjuration and restoration may need 
trainers when fast tracked.  There are two reasons to limit training skills 
up to your player level.  The first reason is that early in the game, gold is 
needed to purchase equipment, filled soul gems, spell books, a house, etc.  
All skills start at level 15 or above.  The second reason to not train base 
skills beyond your player level is the reason for not using the free training 
from Faendal.  Skills higher than your player level tend to increase your 
player level too fast making your character more vulnerable to leveled 

The second lesson is to consider your player level the lower limit for skills 
in skill trees that use perks in your plan.  On the odd player levels, the 
skill level required for the perk is below your player level following the 
proposed plan.  Keeping skills up at character level in the used skill trees 
will keep the skills relevant.  Relevant skills are important for skill trees 
like destruction.  If your character is using novice destruction spells at 
level 25, the spells will have very little effect on level 25 enemies

The third lesson is to not train skills for the skill trees that your 
character is not planning to gain perks in.  Trying to keep all skills up to 
your player level falls apart somewhere around level 25 due to a training 
limit of five skills per player level.  Training skills not frequently used 
will contribute to enemies leveling too fast for your character to survive. 
Too low a skill level will prevent your character from picking up the planned 

6.	Skills and Perks

The skills section gathers as much relevant information about each skill into 
a single place to enjoy the skill tree without providing every detail about 
the game.  Each section also explains the perks in the recommended legendary 
character build. The skills and perks are presented in alphabetical order

6.01	Alchemy

Alchemy is one of the first two skill trees to develop quickly in the game.  
Farming makes alchemy easy to improve and help solve the finance issues in 
the game.

6.01.1	Potions and Farming

Potions are among the most versatile aids in the game.  Potions are created 
by combining ingredients that have common effects.   Each ingredient has four 
effects.  The first effect of each ingredient can be discovered by eating the 
ingredient.  Further effects can be discovered by purchasing recipes, using 
perks, or using trial and error. Potions are also a source of income that 
improves as alchemy perks are gained.

The most expensive potion to make from ingredients early in the game is:

Blue Butterfly
Blue Mountain Flower
Giant's Toe

The potion value will increase as alchemy skills and perks are acquired.  
Giant's Toe will create a great return on investment when purchased from an 
alchemy shop.  Eventually, giants can be taken down using paralysis potions 
and your best weapons.

The Hearthfire expansion enables farming, or planting ingredients and 
harvesting the plants.  Around level 10, your character will get an 
invitation from the Jarl of Falkreath for a quest to take care of some 
bandits.  To become Thane also involves some quests helping three people from 
Falkreath.  The simplest quests in Falkreath to become a Thane are: Barit's 
Ashes (delivering ashes from Thadgeir to Rumil), Stealing a note from Lod's 
house for Dengeir, and selling a cabbage to Mathies that can be picked from 
his farm.  Sell the cabbage last, as the cabbage seems to reset any glitches.  
Four quests and 5000 gold pieces enable buying land to build a house.  Built 
houses can include building a garden and planting 11 ingredients.  Building a 
house can also include building a greenhouse and planting 18 more 
ingredients.  House plants produce 3 to 5 of each ingredient when harvested.  
Purchase needed farming ingredients not found.

The following farming recipes are recommended:

Plant          Per Plant  Potions
Creep Cluster     5       Fortify Carry Weight / Restore Magicka
Scaly Pholiota    5       Regenerate Stamina / Fortify Illusion
Mora Tapinella    3       Weakness to Magic

Cannis Root       4       Paralysis /
Imp Stool         4       Damage Health (1.5xDamage)
Death Bell        3 

Blisterwort       4       Fortify Smithing /
Glowing Mushroom  5       Fortify Health /
Wheat             4       Restore Health

Snowberries       4       Enchanting (w/Blue Butterflies) /
Dragons Tongue    4       Resist Fire /
Tundra Cotton     3       Fortify Barter /

Snowberries with Blue Butterflies create Enchanting potions.  Unused 
Snowberries adds Resist Fire to the fortify barter with Dragons Tongue and 
Tundra Cotton.

Sell unused potions.  Eventually, carrying all of your potions will get 
heavy, so as a general rule when your character has more than 5 of any 
potion, store the rest in your house for future use.  The extra potions will 
come in handy using the Dragonborn expansion when recycling your alchemy 
skill tree and want to use the good potions while selling the cheaper 

As for the rest of the ingredients, try eating them and trial and error to 
figure out what different ingredients do.  Farming provides needed potions. 
The rest of the potions are for discovering on your own.  Looking up all of 
the ingredient effects takes something away from playing the game.

6.01.2	Alchemy Perks

Returning to the perks selected on the Alchemy skill tree, the recommended 
perks are alchemist 1-5, physician, benefactor, poisoner and concentrated 
poison.  The alchemist perks increase the potency and value of all potions.  
Physician and benefactor help the positive effects of potions.  Poisoner 
helps your poisons, and Concentrated Poison allows your character to paralyze 
two enemies before reapplying poison to your weapon.  With concentrated 
poison and paralysis with only one enemy, be sure to switch to another attack 
such as destruction or the weapon in your other hand until the paralyzed 
enemy tries to get up.  Paralyzing a paralyzed enemy does not do much.

The experimenter perks are ok for discovering other ingredient effects.  
Farming makes Green Thumb obsolete.  Green Thumb does not affect how many 
ingredients are harvested from farm plants.  Snakeblood provides 50 percent 
poison resistance. Purity makes potions have all positive or all negative 
effects.  For some potions, purity increases the potion usefulness while 
decreasing the potion sale value. Snakeblood and Purity are ok, but 9 perks 
in one skill tree are enough.

6.02	Alteration

Alteration is recommended for the magic resistance perks, the paralysis and 
mass paralysis spells.

Magic resistance has a maximum of 85 percent.  To reach 85 percent a Breton 
starts with 25 percent resistance. Early in the game, enter the temple in 
Riften and visit Dinya Balu.  Dinya will send your character on The Book of 
Love quest which involves helping 3 people.  When completed, your character 
receives "Agent of Mara", providing 15 percent magic resistance brining magic 
resistance up to 40 percent.  In the process your character will receive an 
amulet of Mara, which is needed to get married.  Sometime around level 10 a 
courier will deliver a note to visit the Museum of the Mythic Dawn in 
Dawnstar.  Visit the museum and start a quest line for the pieces of 
Mehrune's razor.  Do the quests and your character will be asked to go to the 
Shrine of Mehrunes Dagon which will be added to your map. Follow your map to 
reach the Shrine.  Across from the Shrine entrance is the Lord Stone.  
Activate the stone and receive 50 to your armor rating and 25 percent magic 
resistance, totaling 65 percent.  Add the two 10% magic resistance perks 
Magic Resistance 1 and 2, and your Breton has maxed out magic resistance at 
85 percent without carrying a shield or other enchanted magic resistance 

For the non-Breton, a magic resistance enchanted shield with the elemental 
protection perk and the Agent of Mara mission above also provides 85% magic 
protection without needing the magic resistance perks.

The selected alteration perks, novice and apprentice alteration are required 
for magic resistance.  Adept alteration is needed for stability which extends 
how long the paralysis spells last.  Alteration dual casting and stability 
extend the duration of the paralysis and mass paralysis spells.  Magic 
resistance 3 is not needed for a Breton.  Expert alteration and atronach are 
not necessary with 85 percent magic resistance.  Master Alteration is ok, but 
3 alteration enchantments reduce the cost of the mass paralysis spell by 87 
percent allowing the perks to be used in other places.

6.03	Archery

Poisoned enchanted bows are the most powerful ranged weapons in the game. 
Smithing and enchanting will make your bows very powerful without the archery 
specific perks.  The archery perks recommended include overdraw 1-5, which 
amplifies bow damage by 20 percent for each perk.  Eagle Eye will help see 
and hit targets that are further away.  Magic attacks do not have an 
equivalent perk to eagle eye, contributing to bow superiority over 
destruction spells.  Staggering opponents with Power shot is nice and on the 
way to the Quick Shot perk which increases your bow firing rate and damage 
per second by 30 percent.  

The other archery perks are helpful, but do not improve the bow attacks by as 
much as the perks selected.  Critical hits increase damage by approximately 5 
percent per perk taken.  Ranger is useful for moving faster, but requires 
critical hit and hunter's discipline perks as prerequisites.  Finding or 
making arrows is not an issue, so hunter's discipline is not very helpful. 
Steady hand slows down both your character and your opponent, so the perk 
does not inflict damage faster when able to hit your targets without needing 
to slow them down.  Finally, bullseye is ok, but is one of the effects of 
using a paralyze potion.  The paralyze potion has other effects such as 
lingering damage health.  The other archery perks may be good choices after 
leveling up beyond level 81.

6.04	Block

Block can be ignored by Bretons, but is essential for all other races.  There 
are useful block perks.  If using minimal block perks, recommend perks 
include shield wall 1, and deflect arrows and elemental protection.  If using 
five block perks, block runner enables moving faster with your shield up and 
shield charge knocks down less threatening enemies on the way to the boss.  
Additional shield wall perks only add 5 percent better protection than shield 
wall 1.  Protection is already maximized when your armor rating is 567, which 
can be reached without using a shield.  That leaves shield bash and disarming 
bash.  The block skills are not bad, but there are better alternatives.

6.05	Conjuration

The second pair of skill trees to fast track includes Conjuration.  
Conjuration is very powerful early in the game when summoning a flame 
atronach, and again at Conjure level 90 when casting the dead thrall spell. 
Conjure at level 100 gives access to the twin soul's perk which allows two 
dead thralls. 

Conjuring ability is effected by what happens in the beginning of the game.  
In the starter dungeon is a dead mage in the torture chamber who has a novice 
hood.  Keep this hood after leaving the dungeon.  When in Whiterun, Farengar 
sells a conjure flame atronach spell that can be cast while wearing the 
novice hood.  

Early in the game, the flame atronach is very powerful, has both melee and 
ranged attacks, and can solve quest issues on legendary difficulty that are 
otherwise not addressable until later in the game.  For example, when joining 
the thieves guild early in the game (before level 10, levels 3 to 5 are 
recommended), your character will encounter a lowlife NPC that is very 
difficult to kill at low levels.  Cast the flame atronach up to the ledge by 
the drawbridge, and the atronach will take care of the lowlife.

The set of perks recommended for conjure are along the necromancy branch 
leading to the twin souls perk.  These perks are Novice Conjuration, 
Necromancy, Dark Souls and Twin Souls.  Necromancy has limited use by 
extending how long reanimated dead are active.  Dark Souls adds 100 more 
health to your reanimations and thralls.  Twin souls allows two reanimated, 
thralled or summoned helpers.  These four perks combined with the restoration 
perk Necromage allow casting the Death Thrall spell and thrall two corpses 
that are up to level 50.  

A spoiler that should not surprise even new players is that your character 
eventually becomes the leader of each guild after the original guild leader 
dies.  Most guild leaders level up with your character up to a maximum of 
level 50, which is conveniently the maximum level to thrall characters.  Want 
a mage follower? Try Savos Aren and/or Ancano.  Want a fighter?  Try Kodlak 
Whitemane or Skjor. Complete the civil war to thrall Ulfric who comes with 
dragon shouts or General Tulius.

There are a few things to know about the dead thrall spell.  First, the 
difference between reanimate and thrall is that when your thrall dies, the 
thrall does not turn to ash. Instead, the thrall can be looted, given smithed 
and enchanted weapons and cast dead thrall again. Thralls follow until 
killed, banished or turned.  Casting cloak spells seems to kill all of your 
thralls.  One technique is to smith and enchant the armor that thralls are 
wearing. Return the armor and the thrall will wear the armor.  Thralls will 
spawn new unique armor if the original armor is looted.  Giving the thrall 
smithed and enchanted weapons will only make them more powerful.  Giving the 
thrall back smithed and enchanted armor that the thrall was not wearing 
before causes the thrall to spawn a new set of the armor and ignore the given 

The other conjure branches are good, but not as good as the necromage branch.  
The atronach branch provides summoning without having to rely on finding a 
dead body or creating one during a battle before gaining an assistant.  
Atronachs cannot use smithed and enchanted weapons.

The bound weapons branch allows your summoned weapons to be more effective, 
and to attach a soul trap and banish spell to summoned weapons.  Created 
weapons are more effective because the weapons can be smithed and enchanted.  
Dual casting is useful for casting the bound weapons and increasing the bound 
weapon duration, but there are more useful perks.  Finally, the proficiency 
effects (apprentice, adept, expert and master) can be taken care of using 
enchantments.  Proficiency perks for any magic school are only recommended 
when the proficiency perks are pre-requisites for other perks. In this case 
the novice conjuration perk is recommended.

6.06	Destruction

Destruction magic and the destruction skill tree are helpful, but not as 
critical as the other recommended skill trees.  As a ranged attack, the magic 
spells are not as powerful as a bow for attacking single targets and 
destruction does not have an eagle eye perk to see targets that are far away.  
The destruction crowd control attacks are useful in the earlier to middle 
parts of the game, but not as effective as the alteration spells paralyze and 
mass paralysis available later in the game.  The rune master perk casing 
runes further away is ok, but not having the perk sill allows placing rune 
traps with the restriction to be closer to where the trap is placed.

The dual casting / impact perks are useful when using destruction magic as 
your ranged attack.  The proficiency perks are not recommended other than 
novice destruction.  Novice destruction is a prerequisite to get the other 
perks.  This leaves the fire, frost and lightning branches.  Pick two 
branches.  Most creatures are not immune to lightning, so lightning is a good 
choice.  Fire does extra damage to enemies on fire, and frost slows down 
enemies and drains stamina.  Destruction is useful for crowd control and for 
boosting enchanted weapons. The frost branch is recommended, but fire is also 
useful for extra damage.

Two destruction elements are recommended because the augmented flames / frost 
/ shock perks increase the elemental damage of weapons that have the 
corresponding enchantment.  If your weapon has two enchantments, such as 
frost and shock damage, then augmented shock will increase the effect of BOTH 
the frost and shock damage from the weapon.  The effect works on your one 
handed weapons, two handed weapons and bows, making the augmented destruction 
perks more valuable than perks such as the archery critical hit perk, the one 
handed bladesman perk, etc. that only effect one particular weapon each.

The highest level element perks such as intense flames, deep freeze and 
disintegrate are not recommended because when these perks are available, the 
higher level alteration perks are also available for crowd control.  Since 
the necromancy conjure branch was recommended, do not select disintegrate to 
avoid turning your potential thrall into ash.

6.07	Enchanting

Enchanting is in the pair of skill trees to fast track first.  Alchemy 
provides an instant boost to almost everything.  Enchanting is done at an 
arcane enchanter, such as the arcane enchanter in Dragon's Reach.  Ask 
Farengar how to use an arcane enchanter. Enchanting provides the constant 
effect added to armor, clothing, weapons, etc.  Weapons are charged with a 
combination of soul gems and armor or clothing enchanting. Destruction magic 
skill level helps to slow down how quickly weapons discharge.

The shorter enchanting perk list to explain is the list of perks to skip.  
The soul squeezer / soul siphon branch falls into this category.  While 
charging perks are nice to have, around level 15 gold is not an issue and 
filled soul gems can be purchased.   Soul gems to not weigh much.  Use a soul 
gem storage rule similar to the storage recommendation for potions:  once 
your inventory has more than 5 of any one soul gem size, store 2/3 to 3/4 of 
the soul gems in a container in your house.

The other enchanting perk that can be skipped is corpus enchanter.  Corpus 
enchanter is ok, but the fortify fire / frost / storm enchantment perks boost 
weapons and enable selecting the Extra Effect perk.

The recommended perks include enchanter 1-5, which increase the effect of all 
enchantments by 20 percent each.  Insightful enchanter increases skill 
effects by 25 percent.  Finally, Extra Effect allows putting two enchantments 
on each item.

In the beginning enchantment skills are grown by disenchanting magic items: 
mage robes, enchanted weapons, etc., but NOT your first novice hood.  Save 
the first novice hood to summon flame atronachs.  Around level 15 purchase 
any affordable gems from the general merchants (Belethor, Perci Honey-Hand, 
Grelka, etc.).  General merchants can then use the gold from selling soul 
gems to purchase expensive potions, armor, etc. from your character.  Also be 
on the lookout for enchanted items from merchants that enable learning new 

The highest value enchantments are banish for weapons, block for shields, 
destruction for armor and clothing, water breathing for headgear and jewelry, 
and sneak for boots.  Some of the most helpful enchantments include fortify 
alchemy and fortify smithing.

Once the Extra Effect perk is acquired, check that your alchemy equipment 
(ring, necklace, gloves and helmet) and smithing equipment (ring, necklace, 
gloves and armor) are maximized and that your character is wearing the 
equipment. Next make the best jewelry, armor, and weapons to enchant.  Since 
the plan develops enchanting before smithing, the actual armor and weapons 
material will change as better materials become available.  The bigger the 
filled soul gem the better the enchantment effect and the more expensive the 
soul gem costs.

A special note for enchanting is that falmer helmets (heavy armor), penitus 
oculus helmets (light armor available in Dragon Bridge related to the civil 
war and dark brotherhood quests) can be enchanted and worn with a circlet or 
dragon priest mask. Circlets can also be enchanted.  Enchanting creates many 
choices.  Useful enchantment combinations depending on availability are:

Weapon 1: Shock / Frost Damage
Weapon 2: Shock Damage / Soul Trap
Helmet:   Fortify Conjure / Illusion : Replace with a Penitus Aoculus helmet
Penitus Oculus Helmet: 
          Archery / Conjure
Circlet:  Archery / Illusion
Armor:    Destruction / Alteration
Gloves:   Bow / One handed weapons
Boots:    Sneak / One handed weapons
Rings and Necklaces:
          Bow / One handed weapons
          Destruction / Alteration
          Conjure / Illusion
Ring:     Fortify Unarmed / Carry Weight
Necklace: Fortify Barter / Carry Weight

The above combinations maximize bow and one handed damage.  Changing rings 
and necklaces will provide 3 enchanted pieces to reduce destruction, 
alteration, conjure and illusion spells costs, and two pieces of jewelry for 
restoration spell costs.  Your characters equipment will have room for more 
archery damage enchantments after finding the penitus oculus helmet and a 
circlet enchanted.

6.08	Heavy Armor

Heavy armor is one of the skill trees to skip.  The light armor skill tree is 
recommended instead.  Light armor is lighter, can also reach the maximum 
armor rating and has the perk wind walker which regenerates stamina 50 
percent faster.

If your plan chooses heavy armor over light armor, try the Juggernaut 1, 
fists of steel, cushioned and conditioning perks.  Juggernaut increases heavy 
armor by 20 percent and is a prerequisite perk.  Fists of steel helps in 
brawls increasing hand to hand damage based on your armor.  Cushioned halves 
damage from falling, and conditioning makes the equipped heavy armor weigh 
nothing.  Conditioning is key with heavy armor.

Smithing will help reach the maximum armor rating without the additional 
juggernaut perks, well fitted or matching set.  Tower of strength (50 percent 
less stagger) and reflect blows (10 percent reflect damage) have too many 
prerequisites for the benefits received.

6.09	Illusion

The illusion skill tree is a recommended skill tree.  The illusion skill can 
be acquired slowly and still be effective.  There are several useful illusion 
spells including clairvoyance (show a path to your quest target), muffle (50 
percent less noise from armor), invisibility, and call to arms (area affect 
boost to archery, one handed, two handed, health and stamina).  One issue 
with illusion spells is that the spells only work on enemies up to a level 
limit, and the spells do not work on all enemy types.  The other illusion 
fear, frenzy or pacify spells need specific perks to boost their level 
effectiveness.  As with all magic, the novice illusion is recommended because 
the novice illusion perk is a prerequisite for illusion perks.  The 
recommended illusion branch is animage (effect higher level animals), kindred 
mage (effect higher level people), quiet casting (no noise casing any spells) 
and master of mind (illusion spells effect undead, daedra and automations).  
Illusion dual casting extends the duration for the invisibility and call to 
arms spells. The calm, fear and frenzy perks and are not recommended.

6.10	Light Armor

Light armor is the recommended armor due to being the lightest armor early in 
the game, and the wind walker perk restoring stamina 50 percent faster.  
Smithing will help your light armor reach the maximum armor level when 
combined with the light armor perks agile defender (1) and customer fit.  
Unhindered is the light armor perk that makes equipped armor weigh nothing.  
The extra agile defender and matching set perks are not needed to reach the 
maximum armor rating.  The deft movement perk avoiding 10 percent of melee 
damage may be recommended beyond level 81.

6.11	Lock Picking

The lock picking skill tree is safe to skip.  With some practice any lock at 
any difficulty can be picked.  Extra lock picks are available for purchase at 
many stores within the game.  For a novice lock try to move the lock while 
the pick is in the center.  If the lock does not turn, try half way between 
the center and the right.  If still not opening, try half way between the 
center and the left.  For apprentice locks, check half way between the points 
for novice locks.  Adept check half way between the apprentice checks, etc.  
Use your perks on another skill tree.

6.12	One Handed

Enchanting and one handed weapons are the skill trees with the most, 10, 
recommended perks.  Enchanting skills need to be enhanced quickly to affect 
all skills, weapons and armor.  One handed weapons specialize in melee 
weapons, which can do the most damage.  The recommended perks are Armsman 1-5 
(20 percent more damage per level), Fighting Stance (25 percent less stamina 
for power attacks), Dual Flurry 1-2 (faster dual wielding attacks at 20 and 
35 percent faster), Dual Savagery (50 percent more damage on dual wielding 
power attacks), and Savage Strike (25 percent bonus damage on standing power 
attacks).  This should be plenty of perks for the one handed skill tree.

What was left behind?  Bone Breaker, Hack and Slash, and Bladesman perks 
levels 1 to 3 that increase particular types of one handed weapons are left 
behind.  All are helpful, but not as helpful as the one handed perks 
selected.  Critical charge allows power attacks while sprinting.  Critical 
charge is helpful, but not when fighting enemies paralyzed from potions.  
Paralyzing strike has a 25 percent chance of paralyzing on a backwards power 
attack, but potions are more reliable and do not require a backwards power 

6.13	Pick Pocket

Pickpocket is among the skill trees to skip and spend perks elsewhere.  When 
pickpocket is selected, try the light fingers, night thief, extra pockets set 
of perks.  Extra pockets increase carrying capacity by 100.  Next most 
valuable is to pick up cutpurse and misdirection.  Misdirection allows 
pickpocketing unequipped weapons before having to fight.  Perfect touch 
allows pickpocketing equipped items.  Pickpocketing has an 85 percent success 
cap.  A sneak attack with a poisoned weapon and then looting after the battle 
is preferred.

6.14	Restoration

Restoration is part of the second fast track skills that can stop advancing 
at skill level 70.  All of the restoration perks are helpful to some degree.  
Healing spells help keep your character alive as do healing potions.  Wards 
protect against magicka attacks, which does not really help a Breton.  The 
spells affecting the undead are helpful against the undead, but are too 
specialized for general use.  Guardian circle is an undead crowd control 
spell.  Undead are generally immune to mass paralysis, so this is a useful 
specialized crowd control spell.

The recommended perks are Novice Restoration (proficiency and prerequisite), 
Regeneration (50 percent healing spell bonus), and Necromage.  Necromage 
increases spells against the undead 25 percent more effective for 50 percent 
longer.  Necromage helps both the Dead Thrall conjuration spell and the 
Guardian Circle restoration spell.

Noteworthy perks not selected include respite which adds stamina restoration 
to all healing spells.  Characters generally do not have a problem with 
stamina, so the perk is not selected.  Avoid death heals 250 points of health 
when under 10 percent health once per day.  Avoid death is another perk that 
may be recommended when beyond level 81.  The perks Recovery 1 and 2 
regenerate magicka 25 and 50 percent faster.  Recovery is not as effective as 

Other perks not selected are proficiency perks (apprentice, adept, etc.). 
Ward absorption is not particularly helpful perk from reaching 85 percent 
magic resistance from other perks.

6.15	Smithing

The smithing skill tree recommendation has changed with the expansions.  
Before expansions, the only way to get the best weapons in the game was to 
follow the heavy armor track to Dragon Armor. With the expansion, Dragon Bone 
weapons are now the most powerful weapons in the game and can be acquired 
following either the heavy or light armor path.  The following armor smithing 
perks are recommended: Steel (prerequisite), Elven, Advanced, Arcane 
Blacksmith, Glass, and Dragon Armor.  Elven armor is the lightest armor, 
which makes a slight difference until gaining the unhindered light armor 
perk.  Advance armor allows creating better heavy armor for your follower and 
light armor for yourself, but no weapons.  Glass creates both light weapons 
and armor. Dragon scale armor is the best light armor.  Arcane Blacksmith 
allows smithing armor that has already been enchanted.  One note for people 
who are used to the heavy armor track is that smithing was easier to develop 
with the dwarven smithing perk and converting metal from dwarven ruins into 
dwarven armor and bows.  With the light armor track, developing smithing 
skill involves making more jewelry, armor upgrades and relying on house 

Building jewelry is aided by visiting the Halted Stream Camp.  To find Halted 
Stream Camp if not given a quest early in the game is to leave Whiterun, walk 
past the stables, and turn west to walk North around Whiterun on the west 
side.  Follow your compass directly north towards the tent compass symbol.  
Approach carefully, as Halted Stream Camp is a Bandit camp.  Paralyze poisons 
work well on bandits if the Falkreath farm is up and running.   Inside you 
will find a spell book on a table by the bandit chief's bed that can 
transmute iron to silver and silver to gold.  Silver and gold are the main 
jewelry components.

6.16	Sneak

Sneak is alphabetically the last recommended skill tree.  A crowd of helpers 
drawing fire from enemies while sneaking up to attach with arrows or one 
handed weapons then disappearing into the crowd again is enjoyable.  The 
shorter list is the list of sneak perks not recommended.  The first perks not 
recommended are sneak 2 through 5.  Sneak 1 is a prerequisite for the skill 
tree adding 20 percent to sneak.  Sneak 2 through 5 add 5 percent each.  
Sneak 2 through 5 combined are half as effective as enchanting boots with 
sneak when enchanting is at 100.  The other sneak perk not recommended is 
assassin's blade.  Assassin's blade is nice, but backstab with longer weapons 
is eventually deadly enough to one hit kill most enemies.  When advancing 
beyond level 81, consider assassin's blade again and use quiet daggers for 
sneak attacks.

The selected sneak perks are: Stealth 1 (20 percent sneak skill), Backstab 
(one handed sneak attacks do 6 times the damage), Muffled Movement (armor 
noise reduced 50 percent), Deadly Aim (bow sneak attacks do 3 times the 
damage), Light Foot (don't trigger pressure plates), Silent Roll (sprint 
sneaking), Silence (running without increasing detectability), and Shadow 
Warrior (crouching causes distant enemies to find other targets).

6.17	Speech

The speech skill tree is not recommended.  Speech helps gain more money when 
bartering by either getting better prices, or providing more gold to 
merchants.  In Skyrim, better prices are available when wearing fortify 
barter helmets and necklaces.  The thief's guild missions will eventually 
increase the amount of gold the fences can offer for your merchandise.  Spend 
your perks someplace else.

6.18	Two Handed Weapons

Two handed weapons are not recommended in favor of one handed weapons. One 
handed weapons are faster, lighter and if dual wielding have twice as many 
enchantments.  Two handed weapons are not bad.  Choosing to emphasize two 
handed weapons instead of one handed weapons frees 10 perks from the one 
handed recommendation. The one handed perks are replaced with the recommended 
8 perks below plus two more perks in anything desired.  The two handed 
recommended perks are similar to one handed perks: Barbarian 1-5 (20 percent 
more damage per perk). Champion's stance (25% less stamina for power 
attacks), devastating blow (25 percent more damage for standing power 
attacks) and sweep (sideways power attacks hit everyone in front of your 
character).  Sweep does not have an equivalent with one handed weapon perks.

Perks not recommended include deep wounds, limbsplitter and skullcrusher as 
these perks are specific to types of two handed weapons.  Great critical 
charge is sprinting power attacks, which will drain stamina even more with 
two handed weapons.  Warmaster is the backwards power attack with a 25 
percent chance of paralysis which is less effective than a paralysis potion 
from the farm.

7	Conclusion

That is the guide for legendary character creation and planning.  Hopefully 
this guide has presented enough information for new players to enjoy as much 
as the game as possible without a "go here then there" walkthrough and helps 
develop an even better character building plan.  I hope that all enjoy Skyrim 
as much as I have.
Bob Cameron