A Conjurer in Skyrim Part 2: Windhelm and High Hrothgar

Rynn the ConjurerI haven’t played as a conjurer in a while, so I thought I’d dust off this old save file and summon a flame atronach and conjure a sword and go adventuring. I went up to Windhelm to visit for a bit. I get a quest to collect Queen Freydis’s Sword from a spider lair, and then go into the Forsaken Cave to find something called The White Phial. Considering that the White Phial is for an alchemist, I’m sure it’s not something to help with fingernails. Phial, not file. Anyway I go, I get them, I get back. While the blacksmith rewarded me with an increase in my smithing skill, the alchemist gave me a scant 5 gold. Now I can imagine that the sword must be covered in rust and spider webs, but the blacksmith was more rewarding than the alchemist. True, the phial was cracked, but he’s spent his whole life looking for that artifact, and he only gives me five gold. I tell off his assistant, who pays me 500 gold for the bother. THAT’S BETTER! Humph!

Hey, the greybeards are summoners too! How 'bout that!

Hey, the greybeards are summoners too! How ’bout that!

Then I head on south to the foot of High Hrothgar and climb the seven thousand steps. All this time I’ve have Lydia with me, and by now I’ve given her a dwarven shield I found (I think I found that when I was killing spiders while looking for the queen’s sword), and I’ve gotten some robes of conjuration.

There’s something weird about all this. Whenever I start a new game, I pick something like archery, or destruction, or conjuration, and level up those skills as best as possible, but when it comes down to it, I don’t get any gear to drop in chests of off monsters that give me bonuses in that area, like destruction spells cost 12% less magicka to cast, or deal more damage with bows and arrows, that sort of thing. NO! It’s always the things I don’t use, like two handed weapon bonus, or alteration robes, or heavy armor. I usually have to save up enough gold to buy the items I do want if I’m lucky enough to come across them. And then guess what happens? The next thing I kill or the next chest I loot has an item I’ve been looking for. Like say I just bought a leather helmet that does 10% more damage in archery, then a few minutes later I’m in a cave, I unlock a chest, and lo-and-behold, there’s an elven helmet that deals 15% more damage in archery… and then I’m like, Why didn’t you appear in the last chest I opened?!

Calcelmo runs into the White Phial Store when I try to kill him before he kills someone else. I backstab him with my conjured sword. Sorry about the mess, mister cheepskate alchemist!

Calcelmo runs into the White Phial Store when I try to kill him before he kills someone else. I backstab him with my conjured sword. Sorry about the mess, mister cheepskate alchemist!

Anyway, I’ve managed to get a few things, set my skills up so when I kill something with my sword then it fills a soul gem, if I have any empty ones anyway. In this way I can level up my enchanting as well. And considering that I’m conjuring a sword and using that all the time, I put a couple of perks into the one-handed tree and one in the light armor tree (I’m wearing vampire boots I enchanted to resist fire and some leather bracers to increase my magicka).

Up on High Hrothgar, I learn the second word for Unrelenting Force and the first word for Whirlwind Sprint. Now I get to go all the way back down the mountain and tell Klimmick that a climb this trip had been. Of course, I decide to avoid mentioning my training with the Greybeards, since they live in seclusion after all and I assume there is a reason three of the four are pretty silent most of the time. Master Arngeir is the only one who’s tongue isn’t tied.

Then I head back down the mountain and tell Klimmek that I delivered his supplies to the Greybeards, and shortly after that, two weirdos in orangy robes ask if I’m the dragonborn. Uh oh.

Whatever you're selling, I don't want it!

Whatever you’re selling, I don’t want it!

I try to deny it, after all I’m only just now learning how to use the voice thanks to the Greybeards, but they call my bluff, saying something about Miraak and how he’s the true dragonborn and that all imposters will be killed or something to that effect, and they attack me. I summon my flame atronach and my sword and defend myself, Lydia starts shooting arrows, and the town guard of ivarstead rushes in to help kick some arse. Once the cultists are dead I check their pockets and find a note. Seems they came from an island called Solstheim and that one Miraak sent them. Huh. Well I’m not in the mood to get sea sick and hunt down other dragonborns, if any. Instead, I pocket the letter and leave.

Time to head out.


A Conjurer in Skyrim

Following in the footsteps of the Illusionist in Skyrim, I decided to make a conjurer. Only I am being a lot more flexible and versatile. I will be doing things like using armor, enchanting items, making potions, maybe even crafting my own armor, who knows. But the primary skill I’d level would be conjuration, which is a school of magic that summons things from the twisted realm of Oblivion. In World of Warcraft a mage would conjure bread and water while the warlock would summon demons to obey him/her. The perk for these warlocks is that their demons stay with them until they are dismissed. In Skyrim, the things you can summon only last about a minute or until they are killed. Oh boy…

So after doing a tad of research, I start a new game and make a Breton since they start off with a skill of 25 in conjuration, higher than any other race, and best of all they start off with a conjuring spell, which is conjure familiar. The familiar takes on the form of a ghostly wolf, so I’m like, Oh nice! I get a pet wolf to follow me around and bite the imperials in the ankles! Cool deal.

Doing a little research I read up some interesting info on this race, which I never played before. One fact I found interesting was that the Bretons have a mix of elven and human blood, which explains how they can grasp magic so well.The other fact I found interesting was that the Bretons in previous games had french-sounding names, but in Skyrim, the Bretons in the Reach (mostly Forsworn) have names that resemble Scottish, Irish, or Welch. I only just found out about all this, and I already had made my Breton and named her Crystal… Hope that fits… Hmm. Well too late now. They have a face changer in Riften, but she won’t let you change your name…. I’d like to change my name, throw the Aldmeri Dominion off my tail… Ah well.

Starting up the game then, I make my Breton, name her, and proceed to escape from the keep. I go with Ralof, the Stormcloak prisoner (as usual. I always side with the rebels for some reason. I guess I’m a bit of a rebel at heart.) and we start going into the keep. He unties me and I grab armor and an axe off the dead person and equip them.

I know, I know, the Illusionist in Skyrim doesn’t attack directly and only uses illusion spells, but I’m not one for running around with my head chopped off or bleeding to death or anything like that. So I equip the axe in one hand and a summon familiar spell in the other hand. The summon familiar take up most of my mana to cast just once, but this friendly wolf should stay alive for at least a minute to help kill whoever comes at us.

As we progress through the keep, I summon the wolf again and again as we approach a new mob of people. A couple of times the wolf dies and I don’t have enough mana to summon another. So my axe, which I later replaced with a sword, really came in handy. But in some moments, my trusty wolf runs around and attacks the imperials. The only time it died miserably was twice. The first was when all the imperials swarmed it before me and the Stormcloaks got there, and another time was with the spiders. Must have been the venom. As for the bear, I just sneak past it. If Ralof doesn’t want to tangle with her, then I’m willing to bet my summon-able wolf wouldn’t want to!

So we leave and get to Riverwood. I go into the trader’s house and sell all the extra armor and weapons I got from Helgen. Then pick up the quest to retrieve the golden claw from the bandits who are hiding out in Bleak Falls Barrow. And while I’m there I buy a spell tome for Raise Zombie, which will reanimate a dead body to fight for me for 60 seconds. Yeah, not that long. It’s actually just as long as the Familiar spell. So I buy it and learn it and decide to try it out as soon as I can. What better place, then, than a crypt full of dead bodies? MWA-hahahahahahaha!

Ralof and I part ways when we reach Riverwood, but with my armor and my sword, and two spells to my name, I head on out. As I get near the barrow I pass up a tower that had three bandits living in it. My summoned familiar runs up and kills the first bandit but the second bandit kills the familiar. Switch spells, cast on the nearby corpse, and perfecto! My own undead thrall! The bandit that died first comes back to life, draws his mace and pounds his former comrade to death. NICE! The third bandit also dies very quickly, and afterwards my thrall comments with, “Ughhhhh.” I frown and say to myself, “Did you just say, now ain’t this a surprise, when you went to attack those other guys?”


“Okay, fine, you get the last word… I guess.”

I summon a fresh corpse, since the spell only lasts about 60 seconds and we press on. I reach the barrow and there are three more bandits out there. Naturally my thrall dies before he can kill someone, so I quickly summon a familiar to dispatch one. While I run in circles to avoid being hit, I raise the corpse and it runs up to attack the bandit that’s chasing me. Eventually I stop running about and defend myself with my sword while my thrall attacks my target from behind. Teamwork!

By now I’ve leveled up a few times, and I’ve been able to put a few perks into my conjuration tree. One of whihc made casting novice spells for half the mana, so now I could cast my spells more often if I had to. Before if my thrall or familiar died, I was on my own with my sword. Now if my familiar dies, I can summon a thrall to fight with me. Easy Peasy. Of course having a mage hood with extra magicka helps immensely. I don’t know how the Illusionist in Skyrim is doing their perk points, but I know my conjuration spell tree is growing. I can now raise the dead or summon familiars (I’m guessing familiars works with this too) from twice as far away from me, so now I don’t have to be as close to a dead body to raise it. Good thing since these draugr smell nasty. No offense.



Another nice thing about raising the dead is your dead thrall uses whatever weapons he has on him. You would loot the corpse and take all weapons off him then raise it and it would just fight with it’s fists, or you can give the corpse a powerful weapon and then raise it and it would wield that one instead. Once it dies you can loot the dust and get your weapon back. But my favorite things to reanimate are the ones that cast spells. A spellcasting draugr dies by my blade, I reanimate it, and it starts casting spells at the other draugrs. Sweet!

After my adventure in the barrow, I return the golden claw and set out to Whiterun. As I talk with Farengar about the dragons and give him the stone tablet I already got from Bleak Falls Barrow, I decide to see what spells he offers and I find a couple of conjuring spells. One is bound sword, which conjures a sword in my right hand (NICE, especially since I am right handed) and the sword lasts for two minutes! The other spell was Conjure Flame Atronach. An Atronach, eh? What is that… I summon it. It takes a huge chunk of magicka to cast, but the nest level spell perk will help with that, but still, it lets me summon a really cool… well… flame atronach! Humanoid and female looking, it glides with it’s toes just barely touching the ground, and it looks like it’s made of nothing but fire. This ought to be much more deadly than those wolf-familiars I’ve been summoning! Maybe more powerful than any undead thrall I could summon too!

Just then we get word of a dragon attack at the watchtower. Perfect! Now I can try out this new atronach and bound sword. So I go out with a group of guards, the dragon swoops in to attach, literally. I mean he swoops down feet first and grabs a guard that was right behind me. Yikes! This lizard means business! I summon my flame atronach and marvel at her spell casting. She shoots fireballs into the sky, and she’s aiming for where the dragon is going to be! She doesn’t seem to be missing, unless I’m mistaken! At one point the dragon breathes fire at her and bites her and it dies, I move around, hitting the dragon on it’s wings with my bound sword, and I quickly resummon my atronach. Turns out you only use magicka to summon the minions and the sword… it doesn’t cost any magicka for the minions to attack, nor for each swing of your bound weapon. So just a little magicka to summon it, then pwn at my own pleasure. The dragon starts snapping his jaws at my atronach again, and I resume slashing at it’s side. Then the dragon dies and my atronach glides about merrily… I could have sword she set fire to the dragon… no wait… I… wow. Whoops. I seem to have absorbed it’s soul and turned what was left of the dragon into bones.

Now the guards are saying I must be Dragonborn. Yippie Skippie. Okay. I’m done fighting for one day. Back to Whiterun for me.

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