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Skyrim Races vs Archetypes


An interesting read and I agree with most all of it. Too bad it isn't a The Elder Scrolls Races vs Archetypes thread instead of a Skyrim one thought, it would have given more material to work with(the three last games at least would provide good information. The earlierst and spin-offs have less useful info when it comes to stats) and it could give a more comprehensive view of each of the races.
I searched everywhere for a chart to show how the different races in Skyrim are balanced skill-wise and found nothing, so I whipped this up. BEHOLD!

  • Altmer:
    The Altmer are better than you. They know it, and they're going to make sure you know it. They are stacked with magical potential, some might say overspecialized. But why would anyone want to get their hands dirty in combat when they can incinerate you from a distance? Only barbarians mess about with pointy sticks and clunky armor. Magic is the recourse of the civilized warrior. You'll never get close enough to use that sword. Of course, if you somehow do get close enough to use that sword, the High Elf's tune will probably change. Quickly.
  • Dunmer:
    Dunmer,like their snooty Altmer cousins, are exceptionally powerful mages, preferring to focus on destruction rather than prissy illusion spells. Unlike the Altmer however, Dunmer aren't afraid to get their hands dirty. They're called "Dark Elves" for a reason. Their affinity for alchemy, light armor, and sneaking, makes them good at using magic to strike from the shadows. You'll be dead before you even hear the fireball coming. Unlike the girly Altmer, they do have a recourse at close range, invoking Ancestor's Wrath to consume in flames any who dare come too close. And why on earth would they waste magic on healing? That's what potions are for. It's also worth noting that Dunmer are born with an affinity for shock magic, along with a resistance to fire, making them excellent at killing other mages. Altmer, you have been warned.
  • Argonian:
    Argonians are excellent thieves with skill in lockpicking, pickpocketing, and stealth. However, they're also the only one of the three stealth-adept races to have some magical potential as well, having skill in defensive and healing magic. This makes them the reverse-Dunmer in a sense. Thieving and sneaking is their main focus, but they enjoy having a little support magic to fall back on. Their unique waterbreathing power can mean a quick escape into an area where they can't be followed, and their histskin power allows them to recover quickly should someone attack them for getting too sticky-fingered. The Argonian would prefer not to fight if it can be helped. He's just in it for the profit. He's not above slipping a knife between your ribs when you're not paying attention, however.
  • Khajiit:
    Khajiit are the supreme stealth fighter: half ninja, half cat burglar, all awesome. They have the greatest sneak skills of any race. They can see perfectly in the dark, making it even easier to get kills from the shadows. Their skill in lockpicking and pickpocketing makes them thieves to rival the Argonians. Their skill in alchemy, archery, and one-handed weapons means they have a better chance to defend themselves should they get caught. The Khajiit is a threat even unarmed, thanks to their claws. While Argonians are more suited to fleeing upon being caught, Khajiit can put up a fight at both long and short range, making them excellent assassins and blades-for-hire as well as thieves. You didn't see anything.
  • Bosmer:
    Bosmer are the only elves to have zero magic skill. As far as combat goes, they do one thing and do it well: archery. Bosmer are top-notch archers, relying on their skill with the bow to drop enemies from range. Their alchemy skill allows them to poison their arrows to inflict greater damage. While they actually have a greater variety of stealth-focused skills than the Khajiit do, they lack short range combat options and their powers and abilities are inferior so far as stealth is concerned, making them less flexible in how they can do their dirty deeds. Their resistance to poison and disease makes them naturally suited to life in the wild, as does their unique ability to call animals to their aid. The Command Animal power's greatest strength is also its greatest weakness, however. It's useless indoors. Altogether, the Bosmer's stealth, mastery of the bow, and affinity with nature uniquely equips them to challenge wild beasts and makes them a deadly foe in the open wilderness, one you may never see coming.
  • Nord:
    Nords are warriors. Tough ones. Thanks to a life in the bitter cold of the northern tundra, they can shrug off frost magic like it's nothing. They dominate with two-handed weapons, but are skilled with word and shield also, and have a preference for weapons they make with their own two hands. Their battle cry causes their enemies to flee in terror. Bows and arrows? The Nord will laugh at your puny twigs as he cleaves your head off with his greatsword. Magic? No magician has the concentration to cast spells in the face of a raging, fearsome Nord. Because magicians, much like archers, are cowards. This is the philosophy of the Nord. Interestingly enough, Nords prefer light rather than heavy armor, making them slightly better suited to skirmishes and ambushes than all-out brawls. But while they are fierce, Nords are not uncivilized. They are skilled with words, making them good barterers and diplomats as well as warriors.
  • Orsimer:
    Only one race make more fearsome berserkers than the Nords: the Orcs. The Orcs channel whatever magic is leftover from their now-dead elvish legacy into making two things: weapons and armor. Unless it's being used to enhance their tools of battle, the Orcs have no use for the magic their estranged elvish cousins prize so dearly. They agree with the Nordish sentiment that magic is for the weak or the peculiar. Unfortunately, the Orcs themselves are thought peculiar by most throughout the world. This status as outcasts has forged a brotherhood among the Orcs. If an Orc seeks companionship, he may enjoy the company of his kind at an Orcish stronghold where only the blood-kin may enter. Orcs prefer heavy armor, allowing them to soak up damage as they plow through their enemies with either one or two-handed weapons. Like the Nords, they are skilled at making their own weapons and armor. Unlike the Nords, they know how to make them more powerful with enchantments. Orcs can also go into a Berserker Rage that turns them into an unstoppable engine of destruction. Don't make them angry. You wouldn't like them when they're angry.
  • Imperial:
    Like the Altmer, Imperials know that they're better than you. Unlike the Altmer, they're nice about it. Their uncanny luck means wherever there is gold to be found, the Imperial can usually find a bit more. They can also invoke the authority of the emperor to pacify hostile citizens. Imperials are practical people. They have great skill in both magic and melee combat, with an especially high talent in healing. However, their personal sense of honor and regard for law and order causes them to reject stealth as a means of getting by. They prefer to gain their victories- and their loot- honestly.
  • Redguard:
    Redguards live for the thrill of battle and conquest. Unlike the Nords and Orcs however, they are not barbarians. They are adventurers. Their resistance to poison, ability to quickly recover stamina, and skill with archery allows them to rival a Bosmer in the open wilderness. And while the Bosmer may hold a slight upper hand at long range, the Redguard will cut him down effortlessly at melee range. Redguards also have some skill with magic, using destructive magic to supplement their attacks and defensive magic to soak up damage. They have little use for stealth, though. Any fool can stab someone in the back. Face to face combat is more rewarding.
  • Breton:
    Bretons are the best of both worlds: the elegance and magic affinity of the elves combined with the hardiness and cleverness of men. This makes them good "jack-of-all-tradesmen". While their half-elven ancestry makes them extremely skilled magic users, they have little talent in destructive magic and have no innate combat talent to make up for this deficiency. But despite lacking fighting skills, Bretons are unparalleled masters of personal defense. Their first line of defense is conjuration magic, in which they surpass all other races. Should an enemy manage to defeat the Breton's summonings, they will find the Breton himself no easy target. Their high skill in defensive and restorative magic makes them extremely difficult to kill, their skill with alchemy gives them access to innumerable potions with which to heal or harm, and their racial power allows them to absorb magic spells and use the energy to heal themselves. Bretons also possess skill in illusion and speech, allowing thems to use trickery to escape situations where other races might resort to violence. Despite posessing no innate skills in fighting, sneaking, or combative magic, Bretons don't die easily, making them suitable for just about any role.
This is all shades of oversimplification. The race of an Elder Scrolls character has NOTHING to do with who they are as a person or what skills they use. Not all Khaajit are stealthy, and the Orismer have lots of shamans and blacksmiths.