Deep in my brain, I have a whole bunch of largely useless knowledge. I don’t want to say totally useless because knowing the term for a farm-animal proof ditch in a stately home or the name of the spaceship from Alien has a chance of being handy in a pub quiz. Still, there’s a lot of stuff in there that’s just taking up space. I’m going to dump some of it here and hope that knowing it’s recorded here persuades my brain it’s safe to let it go.
Here’s how to get a really good character really fast in Skyrim.
Step one: Be an Orc. Orcs are the best. Or whichever race looks best to you, I GUESS.
2: In the tutorial dungeon, pick up everything to sell later, but start using bows and light armour. Follow the main quest, but on the road between the start and the village you’re pointed toward there’s a set of 3 standing stones. Activate the Thief one.
c: Stop in Riverwood to offload loot and pick up the Golden Claw quest from the shopkeeper and do the Blacksmithing 101 quest from the blacksmith.
IV: Find a house in the village you’re allowed into with an NPC in it that’s standing far enough away they can’t detect you when you sneak-walk around. Make sure you don’t have anything equipped and that you’re walking rather than running if the sneak-eye doesn’t stay closed
part the fifth: Skyrim’s skill system works by improving the skills you actually use. As you’re using sneak in a safe area, face a wall, tape down the forward button so you run in place and go do something else for 15 minutes.
#6: You now should have maximum sneak. Make sure to allocate perks into the sneak tree when you levelup too, removing the penalties from armour and running are important, as is boosting the sneak attack multiplier. With further levelups make sure you pick up Ghostwalk, the skill at the very end: going invisible just by crouching means nothing will ever find you again.
seven is the magic number: Congratulations, nothing should be able to find you ever again. You’ll have a slight problem at the start, as you’ll have levelled a bit but your damage dealing skill hasn’t, but you should be able to pop a healing potion, sprint away from the monster and hide until they lose interest, at which point sneak attack them again.
8) Go through the Golden Claw quest dungeon to loot some better equipment. Now just play the game as normal!
With a bit of patience and cunning positioning, you should be able to clear almost any dungeon in the game (almost: very tough enemies with a self-heal can outheal your sneak attack-retreat-sneak attack approach until you get significantly higher damage). With all the high-level goodies to sell gold shouldn’t be an issue!
You’ll want to concentrate on getting your Archery skill high, followed by Smithing and Light Armour. One problem with the skills system is that XP is awarded per hit, and as you should be annihilating everything with one arrow it’ll come slowly. One solution is to find a high-level area with a big tough melee monster, stand on a rock where it can’t get you and use the weakest bow and arrows you have to turn him into a pincushion. There’s a Frost Troll on the road to the greybeard’s monastery that’s good for this as he continually heals, so with enough patience and arrows you can get a lot of archery XP. Also, 5 times per level you can train a skill for money, the master trainer for Archery is a guy in the Thieves Guild, which is trivial to join. Similarly, for Light Armour you get XP by getting hit (which as a sneak master you shouldn’t be!), find a mudcrab and with basic health regen jewellery you should be able to take his weak little claw hits until you reach 100 skill or get bored.
You might also want to investigate Conjuration magic as a complementary skill to this playstyle. Summoned bows are powerful at low levels (but a Smithing-enhanced bow is far better fairly fast) and a summoned creature distracts enemies from looking for where the arrows are coming from- Flame Atronachs work well until you build up to Dremora Lords. Enchanting is also a good skill to have to make your overpowered Smith-enhanced equipment ridiculously overpowered.
Alternatively, just drop the difficulty to “Novice” and beat legendary dragons to death with your bare fists. Either way, enjoy being an unstoppable avatar of fantasy videogame destruction!