Tip: Play at master difficulty. Good perk planning makes the game too easy. For more challenge, choose less combative skills.
Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim provides a variety of magic user options and fun gameplay. Enchanting is my favorite skill, but can make the character overpowered—not necessarily a bad thing. Building a mixed-class character (mage-fighter or mage-rogue) tended to capture me in previous Elder Scrolls, but a pure mage in Skyrim can enjoy the role of fighter or rogue at higher levels.
Reisha (Nord) is a pure wizard employed as an assassin. She’s adept at sneaking and one-hand combat, but with minimal perk training in those areas—minimum in 1-hand to get decapitation and only first rank in stealth bonus plus perks to get to Assasin’s Blade. Magic and enchantment turns her into a stealthy assassin.
Tip: Practice enchantment and find a magic item that reduces casting cost in your top wizard skill. Every few levels make new set of apparel (head gear, clothing, necklace, ring) that reduces casting cost.
Practicing primarily in Destruction and Alteration schools of magic, Reisha set out to be a combative wizard. On the side, she also trained in Illusion for better stealth (Muffle and Quiet Casting) and Conjuration to supply something to take hits (plus I love necromancy.) Reisha joined the Dark Brotherhood early in her career and later a vampire clan.
Tip: The Lord Stone (+50 armor, 25% magic resistance) is great for wizard survival or anyone refusing to wear armor.
Tip: For combat, pick a school of magic (Destruction, Illusion, or Conjuration) and work it like crazy. In Destruction you want dual-casting and impact perks as soon as possible. Illusion can replace Destruction by being a less combative wizard—get the enemy to fight each other.
After mastering Enchantment, Reisha created the following as her primary gear:
- Reisha’s Black Dress: Destruction and Conjuration 25% less to cast.
- Reisha’s Gold Diamond Ring: Destruction and Conjuration 25% less to cast.
- Reisha’s Emerald Circlet: Destruction and Conjuration 25% less to cast.
- Reisha’s Ruby Necklace: Destruction and Conjuration 25% less to cast.
- Reisha’s Vampire Boots: 37% fire resistance, +40% one-hand damage
- Reisha’s Blades Sword (Legendary): absorb 19 health, target takes 18 points shock and 9 points magicka damage.
Her apparel gives her free casting in Destruction and Conjuration for endless combat. Note that lower casting cost is much more important than magic recovery speed since combat uses magic very fast with little time to recover.
Note: magicka recovery rate may appear slower during combat, but it’s the same rate—notice the clock: time passes slower during combat (or faster when traveling) to balance gameplay (since the world is not real-time.)
The only reason for fire resistance is to offset her vampiric nature, otherwise magic resistance or another combat bonus might be more effective. She also has alternate attire for sword fighting (more bonuses to one-hand combat and Alteration cost reduction instead of Destruction.)
I chose female for this wizard because previous Elder Scrolls games (Morrowind) offered a few alternate quest-line choices and different dialogues. I’ve found none in Skyrim besides the pronoun switch.
Screenshots are from the game without alterations. Game details are set to High with the high-resolution texture pack. Click on a screenshot for full resolution at 2560×1440.