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“The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim” How to make an overpowered build for legendary difficulty

Arc is a self-help author/speaker and AI thinker currently working as IT Manager in a tech company. He also make apps as a side hustle.

Copyright Bethesda

Copyright Bethesda

Legendary is the most challenging difficulty in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. It greatly reduces the damage your character dealt to 0.25x and increases the damage taken to 3x. This difficulty is not recommended if it’s your first play through since it will eliminate the enjoyment factor for newbie players. Instead, it’s for those die hard fans who knows the ins and outs of the game and looking for the most challenging experience.

If you’re an experienced Skyrim player or someone new to the game whose having hard time surviving the most difficult challenge, then you’re in the right place. Initially, this is called the entrepreneur build since you’ll be focusing first in making a lot of gold.

The most important perks

Basically, there are 3 most important perks in the game that can make your character overpowered. They’re Enchanting, Alchemy, and Smithing. These perks lets you create powerful weapons and armor by mastering and investing points on them.

But leveling these mentioned perks is not an easy tasks. You’ll be needing a lot of resources in order to afford mastering these perks. This means you need to make your character rich first. In other words, you’ll be needing a lot of gold.

Merchant as first profession

The moment you escape from Helgen, you need to stand down and avoid combat as much as you can and try to be a common folk first, doing jobs that doesn’t require killing people. This ranges from running errands that doesn’t require combat, chopping woods, scavenging supplies, collecting ingredients, hunting animals, and mining ores. Then sell everything that you don’t need for gold.

You can also choose the darker path if you don’t have the patience like being a thief and stealing items from a citizen’s pocket. But I don’t recommend this path if you’re not powerful enough to take some thugs that you victim’s hired.

Once you have enough gold (around 2000 will do), it’s time to setup your first startup.

Setup your alchemy venture business

Once you have enough gold for your startup, buy as much alchemy ingredients as you can from alchemy vendors. Then from those ingredients, create different kinds of potions that can possibly be sold to merchants. It’s the most profitable business in Skyrim allowing you to effectively multiply your gold since ingredients are usually cheap. Not to mention that you’re leveling up you Alchemy perk this way. Just don’t forget to get the Thief Stone blessing and some sleep for faster leveling of Alchemy perk.

Of course, some ingredient are really hard to obtain. So you don’t need to focus on creating super expensive potions only. Most of the times, potions with price range of 200 – 1000 gold works better since it’s easier for those to be sold.

Once your potion business is profitable enough and you collected more gold, it’s time to venture into a different industry.

Copyright Bethesda

Copyright Bethesda

Enchanted iron dagger industry

Your next business venture will level up both your Smithing and Enchanting perk but required higher investment. You’ll be needing a lot of gold for this startup because soul gems are quite expensive. Good thing you only need a single iron ingot and leather strip to craft an iron dagger which is cheap.

In order to level up fast don’t forget to get the Warrior Stone blessing and sleep when crafting daggers. Then change to Mage Stone blessing and sleep again when enchanting those items.

Transmuter Jeweler

Another profitable thing to do which can basically benefit your smithing capability. First is pickup the Transmute Spell Tome from Halted Steam Camp or Ansilvund Burial Chambers. The challenge here is you’ll be facing enemies in this place. So make sure you already have good equipment to face them or just run and avoid their attacks.

Once you have learned Transmute, buy and collect as much iron ore as you can. Most smith NPC sells iron ore. Repeatedly cast Transmute spell until all your iron ores become gold ore. If you’re not aware of yet, you can use the wait command to quickly replenish your magicka when it runs out.

Smelt all your gold ore into gold ingot and craft rings from it. Include compatible stones if you have to make it more expensive.

Additionally, you can also enchant each rings to level up your enchanting skill and make the ring value more expensive.

Doing this technique will not only level up your smithing, alteration, and enchanting, but will also make you a lot of gold since rings are expensive when sold.

Hire trainers for quicker progress

Of course, we all wanted the quickest route to mastering our perks. What better way to do it but to get mentors whose more experienced than your character. It requires a lot of gold though but you’re a hard working successful entrepreneur, gold is not an issue.

Another advantage of paying trainers to train you character is that you’re giving them enough gold so that they can afford to buy your most expensive items to sell. Example is selling your created 2000 gold worth potions to an Alchemy trainer that just recently trained you.

Below are the list of mentors you needed and where you can find them:

Alchemy trainers

  • Lami – an adept trainer from Morthal.
  • Arcadia – an expert trainer from Arcadia’s Cauldron in Whiterun.
  • Milore Lenth – an expert trainer from Raven Rock. Milore Lenth is only available when you have Dragonborn add-on.
  • Babeth – a master trainer from Dark Brotherhood Sanctuary. You must be a member of Dark Brotherhood in order to be trained though.

Smithing Trainers

  • Ghorza gra-Bagol – an adept trainer from Markath.
  • Balimund – an expert trainer from Riften.
  • Eorlund Gray-Mane – a master trainer from Skyforge in Whiterun.
  • Gunmar – a master trainer from Fort Dawnguard. Gunmar is only available when you have Dawnguard add-on and A New Order quest must be completed as well.

Enchanting Trainers

  • Sergius Turrianus – an expert trainer from College of Winterhold.
  • Hamal – a master trainer from Malkarth. You need to complete The Heart of Dibella first to unlock this.
  • Neloth – a master trainer from Tel Mithryn. Neloth is only available when you have Dragonborn add-on.

Note: In case you’re not aware, you can only be trained 5 times for each level. Meaning you need to level up in order to be trained again.

Once you reach level 100 on the required perks, the next action you need to do is to learn specific perks.

Important perks

Congratulation in reaching level 100 for your Enchanting, Smithing, and Alchemy. The next step is to carefully placed your points on what matters for creating powerful weapons and armor.


  • 5 points in Alchemist
  • Benefactor


  • 5 points in Enchanter
  • Insightful Enchanter
  • Corpus Enchanter
  • Fire Enchanter
  • Frost Enchanter
  • Storm Enchanter
  • Extra Effect


Put points here based on what kind of weapons and armor you wanted to forge.

Time to craft the best

Once you max the level and learn all the important perks you need, it’s time to reap the rewards and craft powerful weapons and armor. Follow below steps in order:

Note: Be mindful of the time. Potion effect’s wear off even when you’re on enchanting and smithing window.

Step 1: Craft any kind of headgear, necklace, armor, gauntlet, and ring.

Step 2: Get an Enchanter’s Elixir that increases enchanted items by 25%. This potion can be bought from an alchemist merchant. The challenge here is that there’s no guarantee that the potion is always available. So you may need to check each potion seller that you know if they’re selling one.

Step 3: Use your Enchanter’s Elixir and enchant your forged items with the following enchantment:

Headgear – Fortify Alchemy.

Necklace – Fortify Alchemy and Fortify Smithing.

Armor – Fortify Smithing.

Gauntlet – Fortify Smithing and Fortify Alchemy.

Ring – Fortify Smithing and Fortify Alchemy.

Use Grand Soul Gem only to get the maximum possible stats. You should get minimum of 28% increase in created potions including weapon and armor improvement.

Step 4: Equip all of your newly enchanted gears.

Step 5: Create Potion of Fortify Smithing.

Step 6: Craft your desired equipment that you’ll be using to fight enemies.

Step 7: Use your created Potion of Fortify Smithing. Then upgrade your desired equipment that you’ll be using to fight enemies.

Step 8: Create Potion of Fortify Enchanting.

Step 9: Use your created Potion of Fortify Enchanting. Then enchant your desired equipment that you’ll be using to fight enemies.

If you rely your damage on equipped weapon. Below are the best enchantment for your armor and accessory that can heavily multiply your weapon’s damage.

Fortify Archery – for bows and crossbows.

Fortify One-handed – for one-handed weapons.

Fortify Two-handed – for two-handed weapons.

Copyright Bethesda

Copyright Bethesda

Take it further

If you’re not yet contended with the attributes of your items, you can still take it further. Below are the extra things that you can do:

If you’re enchanting your weapon with elements, you can increase its damage further by placing 2 points each for the following perks from Destruction: Augmented Flames, Augmented Frost, and Augmented Shock.

Forge a Stalhrim weapon which can be obtained after “A New Source of Stalhrim” quest from Dragonborn add-on and by learning Ebony Smithing. Then enchant it with chaos damage and frost damage. The challenge here is finding and disenchanting a weapon with chaos damage. The sure way of acquiring one is by defeating General Falx Carius from “March of the Dead” quest from Dragonborn add-on.

Wearing four relics of Ahzidal will grant your character Ahzidal’s Genius which increases your Fortify Enchanting by 10 points.

Become a vampire and learn the necromage perk from Restoration. This will increase your Fortify Enchanting by another 25%.

Playstyle is still up to you

Now that you know how to make overpowered equipment, below are the example builds that you can play with:

  • Sword and Shield (or any one-handed weapon) wearing heavy armor.
  • Two-handed melee weapon wearing heavy or light armor.
  • Stealth Archer.
  • Combat Archer.
  • Dual wield.
  • Stealth Assassin using dagger.

It’s up to you what kind of combination you’ll be playing or what weapon you’ll be wielding. The important thing is you have the edge and fighting chance in surviving legendary difficulty.

© 2021 Arc Sosangyo

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