Skyrim Skills and Perk Tree Guide

By   /   Nov 11, 2011

On this page, we have detailed every combat skill and its corresponding perk tree. You will find tips on how to use a specific skill and which perks you should level up.


How good of an archer you are in Skyrim ? this skill will dictate your use bows and arrows. Higher your skill level, the more damage you would do as an archer.

Good at range and vulnerable in close combat – archers have a balanced combat mechanics. Since you can do one-shot kills in Skyrim, Archers are deadly in range you can aim right.

If you want to take a powerful shot, keep your bow drawn for a longer period. You can also cancel the shot by putting the arrow away after it has been drawn. There is one downside to this skill, arrows are really hard to find in Skyrim.

Archery Perk Tree

Bows do 20% more damage.

Eagle Eye
Pressing Block while aiming will zoom in your view.

Steady Hand
Zooming in with a bow slows time by 25%.

Power Shot
Arrows stagger all but the largest opponents 50% of the time

Quick Shot
Can draw a bow 30% faster.

Critical Shot
10% chance of a critical hit that does extra damage.

Hunter’s Discipline
Recover twice as many arrows from dead bodies.

Able to move faster with a drawn bow.

15% chance of paralyzing the target for a few seconds.

Skill Bonus
Choose of these races to get starting skill bonus:

  • Bosmer
  • Khajiit, Redguard


You can block the enemy attacks to reduce damage, using shield or even weapons. Level up perks and you will even damage your foes when blocking and can also disarm them.

To successfully block an attack, you will have to time it right. Timing is crucial here – if you aren’t careful, enemy blows will hit easy.

Block Perk Tree

Shield Wall
Blocking is 25% more effective.

Deflect Arrows
Arrows that hit the shield do no damage.

Elemental Protection
Blocking with a shield reduces incoming fire, frost, and shock damage by 50%.

Quick Reflexes
Time slows down if you are blocking during a power attack.

Power Bash
Able to do a power bash.

Deadly Bash
Bashing does more damage.

Bash Disarm
Chance to disarm when power bashing with a shield.

Shield Charge
Able to move faster with a shield raised.

Skill Bonus
Choose following races for starting skill bonus:

  • Imperial, Nord, Orc, Redguard

Heavy Armor

Wear the heavy armor and it will affect your ability to move faster and fight effectively, but not if you level up Heavy Armor skill. Train your warrior to use heavy armor and you can efficiently use Iron, Steel, Dwarven, Orcish, Ebony, and Daedric armors.

You don’t have to wear the matching set of heavy armor for maximum benefit, any combination of armor will work.

Heavy Armor Perk Tree

Increase armor rating 20%.

Fists of Steel
Unarmed attacks with heavy armor gauntlets increases damage done. Damage increased by the gauntlets’ armor rating.

Fall damage is halved when wearing a full set of heavy armor

Heavy armor weighs nothing and doesn’t slow you down.

Well Fitted
25% armor bonus when wearing a full set of heavy armor

Tower of Strength
50% less stagger when wearing a full set of heavy armor

Matching Set
Additional 25% armor rating bonus when wearing a matched set of heavy armor.

Reflect Blows
10% damage reflected back to enemy when wearing a full set of heavy armor

Skill Bonus
Choose one of these races to get starting skill bonus:

  • Orc
  • Imperial


How good you are using one-handed weapons such as long-swords, daggers, and maces. Choose dual-wielding and you can put one-handed weapons in both hands in any combination. The higher the skill level, more damage you do with these weapons.

Skyrim takes a different path compared to Oblivion – there are no blade and blunt weapons in Skyrim, instead weapons are divided into one-handed and two-handed weapons, which allows for dual wielding of maces and swords.

One-Handed Perk Tree

Additional damage ranging from 20-100% as you rank up this perk.

Hack and Slash
Attacks with war axes cause extra bleeding damage.

Fighting Stance
Power attacks with one-handed weapons cost 25% less stamina.

Savage Strike
Standing power attacks do 25% bonus damage with a chance to decapitate your enemies

Critical Charge
Can do a one-handed power attack while sprinting that does double critical damage.

Paralyzing Strike
Backwards power attack has a 25% chance to paralyze the target.

Bone Breaker
Attacks with maces ignore 25% of armor.

10-15% more change of doing critical damage.

Dual Flurry
Dual wielding attacks are 20% faster.

Dual Savagery
Dual wielding power attacks do 50% bonus damage.

Skill Bonus
Choose one of these races to get starting skill bonus:

  • Redguard
  • Imperial, Khajiit, Nord, Orc


It’s a crafting skill for combat that gives you the ability to create and improve your weapons and armor. The more skilled you are, the more improved weapons and armor you can craft. You can only perform smithing at certain locations such as a Blacksmith.

In these locations, you will find several types of tools like Grindstones, Workbenches, Forges, and Tanning Rack. Grindstones sharpen your weapons for extra damage. The more skilled you are, the more weapon damage is improved.

Workbenches allow you to improve armor and again the same formula applies here. The more skilled you are, the more armor rating is improved. Forges let you craft new weapons and armor from raw materials and Tanning Rack process hides into leather and leather strips.

To craft new weapons, armor and other items in Skyrim, you will raw materials. You can get the ingredients such as iron from mining and hides by killing animals.

Smithing Perk Tree

Steel Smithing
Create Steel armor and weapons at forges, and improve them twice as much.

Arcane Blacksmith
Improve magical weapons and armor.

Dwarven Smithing
Create Dwarven armor and weapons at forges, and improve them twice as much.

Elven Smithing
Create Elven armor and weapons at forges, and improve them twice as much.

Orcish Smithing
Create Orcish armor and weapons at forges, and improve them twice as much.

Advanced Armors
Create scaled and plate armor at forges, and improve them twice as much.

Glass Smithing
Create Glass armor and weapons at forges, and improve them twice as much.

Ebony Smithing
Create Ebony armor and weapons at forges, and improve them twice as much.

Daedric Smithing
Create Daedric armor and weapons at forges, and improve them twice as much.

Dragon Armor
Create Dragon armor and weapons at forges, and improve them twice as much.

Skill Bonus
Choose any of these races and you get starting skill bonus:
Nord, Orc, Redguard


Want to equip larger weapons ? level up Two-Handed skill. It requires both hands because the weapons are heavy and large such as greatswords, warhammers, and battleaxes.

Two-Handed Perk Tree

Two-Handed Prowes – Barbarian
Two-handed weapons do 20% more damage.

Attacks with warhammers ignore 25% of the target’s armor rating.

Attacks with battleaxes do extra bleeding damage.

Deep Wounds
Attacks with greatswords have a 10% chance of doing critical damage.

Champion’s Stance
Power attacks cost 25% less stamina.

Devastating Blow
Standing power attacks do 25% bonus damage. It may also decapitate an enemy.

Great Critical Charge
Sprinting power attacks do double critical damage.

Sideways power attacks hit all nearby targets.

Backwards power attacks have 25% chance of causing paralysis.

Skill Bonus
Choose any of these races to get starting skill bonus:

  • Nord
  • Orc

Continue reading for Stealth Skills/Perks.

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