Skyrim Skills and Perk Tree Guide

  • By Staff

  • November 11, 2011

  • 6


In Elder Scrolls V Skyrim, there are 18 skills and more than 250 perks. Each skill determines how well you can perform a specific task and has a branching perk tree that dictates how proficient you are in the said skill.

General rule is, the more you use the specific skill, the more it increases, which in turn helps your character level up. Each Skill starts with a standard value of 15 but certain races give bonuses to certain skills which increases the starting value of these skills.

From there, you can level up these skills to match your needs in the wild world of Skyrim. Skills in Skyrim are divided into four categories and they are – Magic, Combat, Non-Combat, and Stealth.

Below you will find the each category and list of skills that fall under a specific category. For more help on Skyrim, read our Walkthrough, Crashes Tweaks and Race Guide.

Skyrim Mage Skills – Magic

Skyrim Warrior Skills – Combat

Skyrim Thief Skills – Stealth

Before I start explaining each skill in detail, I would like to give you an overview of the perks.

Each skill in Skyrim has associated perks, which you can unlock by leveling up your character. They are more than 250 perks that you can unlock by meeting the requirements.

Each perk may have a skill requirement, a pre-requisite perk requirement or both, so will need to unlock that skill or perk first before you can unlock that specific perk.

If any skill has two pre-requisite perks, unlocking one will serve the purpose. You don’t have two unlock both perks to unlock the skill. Though, there are around 250 perks available to you in Skyrim, you can only choose 70 – one per level for a given character, so you have to make wise choices and choose perks that compliment your game style.

Elder Scrolls V Skyrim Skills and Perk Trees

Following is the detailed guide on every skill, how to use that skill and perk tree associated with every skill. It focuses on the benefits of using every skill and trade-off thus you have to make for choosing to level up the said skill.

Alteration

Alternation is one of the five schools of magic in Skyrim and it involves transformation and transmutation of matter and energy. It’s all about manipulation of physical world and its natural properties. Leveling up these skills can make it easy for to cast spells like waterbreathing, magic protection, and paralysis.

Alteration Perk Tree

Alteration Dual Casting
Casting the same effect from both your hands overcharges the effect to create a more powerful spell.

Novice Alteration
You can cast Novice level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Apprentice Alteration
You can cast Apprentice level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Adept Alteration
You can cast Adept level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Expert Alteration
You can cast Expert level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Master Alteration
You can cast Master level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Mage Armor
Protection spells like Stoneflesh are twice as strong if not wearing armor.

Magic Resistance
Block 10% of a spell’s effects.

Stability
Alteration spells have greater duration.

Atronach
Absorb 30% of the magicka of any spells that hit you.

Skill Bonus
Alteration skill gets starting bonus if you choose these races:
Altmer, Argonian, Breton, Dunmer, Redguard

Alteration Magic Spells
These are the standard alternation magic spells:

  • Detect Dead
  • Detect Life
  • Feather
  • Fire Shield
  • Frost Shield
  • Paralyze
  • Shield
  • Shock Shield
  • Spell Absorption
  • Telekinesis
  • Water Breathing
  • Water Walking

Conjuration

One of the five magic schools of Skyrim. You can summon the dead or other creatures to help you in the hour of need. You can also create soul traps and bindings with this skill.

Conjuration Perk Tree

Novice Conjuration
You can cast Novice level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Conjuration Dual Casting
Casting the same effect from both your hands overcharges the effect to create a more powerful spell.

Mystic Binding
Bound weapons do more damage.

Soul Stealer
Bound weapons will cast soul trap on targets.

Oblivion Binding
Bound weapons will banish summoned creatures and turn raised ones.

Summoner
Can summon atronachs or raise undead twice as far away.

Atromancy
Double duration for conjured Atronachs.

Elemental Potency
Conjured Atronachs are 50% more powerful.

Necromancy
Greater duration for reanimated undead.

Dark Souls
Reanimated undead have 100 points more health.

Twin Souls
You can have two atronachs or reanimated zombies.

Apprentice Conjuration
You can cast Apprentice level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Adept Conjuration
You can cast Adept level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Expert Conjuration
You can cast Expert level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Master Conjuration
You can cast Master level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Skill Bonus
You will get starting skill bonus for Conjuration when you choose these races:

  • Breton
  • Altmer

Conjuration Magic Spells
These are the conjuration magic spells you can cast in Skyrim:

  • Bound Armor
  • Bound Weapon
  • Reanimate
  • Soul Trap
  • Summon

Destruction

One of the five magic schools in Skyrim. It focuses on harnessing the energies of elements to give means of inflicting damage on enemies. Destruction spells use elements like fire, frost, or shock and damage enemy’s health, magicka, and affects stamina.

Using this skill, you can easily cast spells like Fireball, Ice Spike, and Lightning Bolt. What makes destruction important, is the ability to cast spells as constant or on self.

On self will cause the spell to originate from the player and spread out in a circle, damaging all nearby enemies. You can use spell runes which will allow to place a magical trap on the ground that will activate when an enemy walks over it.

Destruction Perk Tree

Novice Destruction
You can cast Novice level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Destruction Dual Casting
Casting the same effect from both your hands overcharges the effect to create a more powerful spell.

Apprentice Destruction
You can cast Apprentice level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Adept Destruction
You can cast Adept level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Expert Destruction
You can cast Expert level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Master Destruction
You can cast Master level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Augmented Flames
Fire Damage spells do 25% more damage.

Augmented Frost
Frost Damage spells do 25% more damage.

Augmented Shock
Shock Damage spells do 25% more damage.

Disintegrate
Shock damage disintegrates targets if their health is low.

Deep Freeze
Frost damage paralyzes targets if their health is low.

Intense Flames
Fire damage causes targets to flee if their health is low.

Rune Master
Can place runes five times farther away.

Impact
Most destruction spells will stagger an opponent when dual cast.

Skill Bonus
You will get a starting skill bonus if you choose these races:

  • Dunmer
  • Altmer, Imperial, Redguard

Destruction Magic Spells
These are the destruction magic spells you can cast in Skyrim:

  • Damage Health
  • Damage Magicka
  • Damage Stamina
  • Fire Damage
  • Frost Damage
  • Shock Damage

Enchantment

It’s the ability to add enchantments to items in Elder Scrolls V Skyrim. You can enchant weapons, armor, and clothes. Your ability to enchant your weapons and armor would depend on how good you are at enchantment – how powerful you are at this skill.

Learn the magical effect that you want to apply and then enchant the item of your choice. You also need soul gems – they determine the strength of the enchantment that you can create.

You can enchant items at the enchanting workbenches. You can also break down enchanted items that you have found and learn new magical effects used in the item’s enchantments at these workbenches.

Enchantment Perk Tree

Enchanter
Enchantments are 20% stronger.

Fire Enchanter
Fire enchantments are 25% stronger.

Frost Enchanter
Frost enchantments are 25% stronger

Storm Enchanter
Shock enchantments are 25% stronger.

Insightful Enchanter
Enchanted armor is 25% stronger.

Corprus Enchanter
Health, magicka and stamina enchantments are stronger.

Extra Effect
An extra effect can be applied to already-enchanted weapons.

Soul Squeezer
Soul gems provide extra magicka when recharging enchanted equipment.

Soul Siphon
Death blows to creatures trap souls for weapon recharge.

Skill Bonus
You get a starting skill bonus when you choose these races:

  • Altmer, Imperial, Orc

Illusion

One of the five magic schools in Skyrim. It focuses on manipulating the mind of your target – changing its perception of the World. Using this skill, makes it easier to cast spells like Fear, Charm, and Invisibility.

Illusion Perk Tree

Illusion Dual Casting
Casting the same effect from both your hands overcharges the effect to create a more powerful spell.

Novice Illusion
You can cast Novice level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Apprentice Illusion
You can cast Apprentice level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Adept Illusion
You can cast Adept level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Expert Illusion
You can cast Expert level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Master Illusion
You can cast Master level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Animage
Illusion spells now work on higher level animals.

Kindred mage
All Illusion spells work on higher level people.

Hypnotic Gaze
Calm spells now work on higher level opponents. Cumulative with Kindred Mage and Animage.

Aspect of Terror
Fear spells work on higher level opponents. Cumulative with Kindred Mage and Animage.

Rage
Frenzy spells work on higher level opponents. Cumulative with Kindred Mage and Animage.

Quiet Casting
All spells you cast from any school of magic are silent to others.

Master of the Mind
Illusion spells work on undead, daedra and automatons.

Skill Bonus
Choose these races for starting skill bonus:

  • Altmer
  • Breton, Dunmer

Illusion Magic Spells
You can following Illusion Magic Spells in Skyrim:

  • Chameleon
  • Charm
  • Clairvoyance
  • Command Creature
  • Command Humanoid
  • Demoralize
  • Frenzy
  • Invisibility
  • Light
  • Night-Eye
  • Silence

Restoration

One of the five magic schools in Skyrim – it focuses on spells that cure physical injuries. You do that by controlling the life forces with magic, which in turn, helps you cast spells like Healing, Turn Undead, and Magic Wards easily.

Restoration Perk Tree

Restoration Dual Casting
Casting the same effect from both your hands overcharges the effect to create a more powerful spell.

Respite
Healing spells will also restore stamina.

Novice Restoration
You can cast Novice level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Apprentice Restoration
You can cast Apprentice level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Adept Restoration
You can cast Adept level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Expert Restoration
You can cast Expert level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Master Restoration
You can cast Master level spells with 50% less Magicka.

Regeneration
Healing spells cure 50% more.

Necromage
All spells are more effective against undead.

Ward Absorb
Wards recharge your magicka when hit with spells.

Recovery
Magicka regenerates 25% faster.

Avoid Death
Once a day, heals 250 points automatically if you fall below 10% health.

Skill Bonus
Choose these races for starting skill bonus:

  • Imperial
  • Altmer, Argonian, Breton

Restoration Magic Spells
You can following spells Restoration Magic Spells in Skyrim:

  • Cure Disease
  • Cure Paralysis
  • Cure Poison
  • Fortify Attribute
  • Fortify Health
  • Fortify Magicka
  • Fortify Skill
  • Fortify Stamina
  • Regenerate Health
  • Regenerate Magicka
  • Regenerate Stamina
  • Restore Health
  • Restore Magicka
  • Restore Stamina
  • Turn Undead

Continue reading for Combat Skills/Perks and Stealth Skills/Perks.

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By Staff

I could be anyone from Team SegmentNext. I am called into service for posting cheats and community contributed content.


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    • Keon

      can you master both light and heavy armor skills? because my light armor skill reached at 100.

      • Arial

        yes but having all the perks might be a bit harder but mastering both is possible

    • lanceb

      a noob question, how to use expert version of spells? i got the expert perk but only have adept and apprentice spells avail..

      • http://segmentnext.com Haider Khan

        You have to buy expert spells from various people. You can get them from Collage of Winterhold from the teachers there. New dialogue options open up with the teachers if you have adequate levels in that specific area of magic. Additionally, there are quite a few books you can find across Skyrim. Most are Novice spells, but there are a few that allow you to learn more advanced spells

    • MuyLocoNC

      there’s not a set level, you know that right? toucan get all the perks, by what your saying the highest level is seventy but my friend is 83 legit. just letting you know

      • http://segmentnext.com Zawad Iftikhar

        Yes Sir! you are right.