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Playing a "Pacifist"
By James Lapham
This guide will show you a fun way to play a "pacifist" (0 kills) trust me when I say it is very fun and very powerful! I have been playing the "pacifist" style character for a while and with the release of Skyrim special addition saw it as an opportuinity to get all the achivements on a pacifist character.
So you have heard of the pacifist playstyle already? If you haven't the idea is trying to complete all the quests whilst having 0 kills on your Combat stats. There are many ways of conquering your enemys without having it go on record. Some may see my take on the challenge as not a true pacifist but I purely want a 0 kill stat. A heads up before I go any further, killing Aulduin is not possible with this challenge so once you capture the dragon in whiterun I suggest just leaving him caged up as a trophy. I have tried almost everything to complete the quest but it is a scripted event and so you must kill him. if you are wanting your clean record stop at that point.
Question: "Doesn't this challenge make it boring or tedious to play?" Answer: "Not at all"
I found this playstyle really does get you exploring lots of new and intresting ideas, through a lot of hours I have discoverd some great techniques I am happy to share. however I may not have found them all so make sure to experiment yourself. be sure to take plenty of different saves incase something goes wrong. (multiple saves) I found with this build especially for those Dragon fights switching to third person is completely Viable unlike a lot of playstyles.
Dealing with the enemy!
Thought the life of a pacifist would be tame and relaxing? well it doesn't have to be!
I'm aware I'm probably not the first but I discoverd a new way of playing the challenge that I'd like to share. It consists of Slapping the enemy to death, let me tell you now it's very satisfying. you must aquire the "Targe Of The Blooded" from the Dwemer Ruin "Altland" dropped by a Redguard called Umana. For more on the item check the "Gearing Up" section. The idea behind the playstyle is that if the enemy is killed by the bleed affect on the shield it will not count as your kill. The Heal spell comined with the perk "Respite" will allow you to quickly get enough stamina for infinite Bashing! Another way to keep bashing your opponents is to create one of three meals below. Playing this style you will be able to stun lock enemys making it very powerful!
These will give you a buff that regens your stamina at a rate so you can relentlessly bash!
Cooked: Vegatable Soup
Cooked: Venison Stew
Cooked: Beef Stew
Manipulator This playstlye involves getting others to kill for you, probably the most common. using the "fury" spells you can makes enemies kill each other then calm the final one or lead him to a trap ect.. This playstyle is effective although you will have to grind out Illusion if you want to explore Crypts and Dwemer Ruins, in order to get the "Master of the Mind" Perk.
ChillPill ChillPill is the clean conscience build. if you want to truely be a "pacifist" then this is the build to run, by avoiding enemys by sneaking around them or calming them down with spells. you will be able to inflict no harm on anyone.
When it comes to gear you have a lot of freedom, obviously all these fantastic weapons you find can be decoration for your house I'm talking about the cool looking armour and crazy enchants!
To start lets go with my favourite playstyle! This unique shield is now my favourite item in the game found from the Dwemer Ruin "Altland" dropped by a Redguard called "Umana". When I stumbled across it I imediately tried to abuse it's enchantment and to my joy I found it's inner beauty! Simply bash your oppent in the face to inflict a bleed, if the target dies from the bleed you will not get the kill. WARNING: if the target is too low the bash may get the final hit and kill the target though this is rare it never hurts to do a quick F5 before a battle to be sure.
The Nightingale armour found at the end of the thieves guild questline is a very good armour to use, especially the boots that grant you the power to move silently! Becoming an Official Nightingale will also reward you with one of three unqiue powers, I reccomend the Shadow one as it will save you having to recast invisibility in the midst of combat. these two combined can allow you to manipulate others from the safety of the shadows.
Archmage's Robes? yeah one of my favourite looking items also with a great enchant! Doesn't take long to get so well worth getting early. I tend to switch up my playstyle all the time to keep it intresting so this item is very flexible for a pacifist! On the College of Winterhold questline you will also get the Draon Priest mask that gives you 100% magika regeneration which will also come in very handy.
As someone trying to boost Enchanting I was wondering about soul trap, I have tested it and it's ok to cast soul trap and then say finish them off with a shield to the face. However the shout "soul tear" this insantly kills the target to take thier soul, that does count as a kill.
Skills and Perks
Skills to level:
Enchanting, Smithing, Alchemy
When it comes to armor you have a lot of freedom another strength of the playstyle. The "Targe Of The Blooded" is heavy armour. but when it comes to the set bonus in the tree you can go for either or just were your finest enchated clothes and use alteration spells. keep in mind there is a game imposed Armor limit which is an 80% damage reduction. that by most people's level 50 is already more than passed making the Heavy Armor's extra numbers irrelevant. I have done some testing and if you are going with Heavy Armor the "reflect blows" perk sounds like it would be good but this does actually count it as your kill.
Perks that are really useful!
Obviously take all the ones that allow you to cast spells on highier level targets, I try not to take the ones that reduce the cost as I like to do that through armour. Although obviously they are very useful. Maybe take them and once you max it reset for the perks. though you will lose the very powerful level 90 perk.
The best perk you can get is at level 90 Illusion "Master of the Mind" this will allow you to cast your illuison spells on undead and dwarven enemys.
Restoration has a lot of usefull perks to your playstyle including
Regenration: this unlocks at level 20 and simple increases your heals by 50%, rude not to take this really.
Respite: This perk I really love and in my opinion a must have, unlocking at level 40. It will also recover your stamina when you heal. This unlocks another option the Heal/Shield build healing spell in the right and the targe in the left. bash the life out of your enemys then do a little bit of healing to bash. Heal, Bash, Heal, Bash. note you don't need all the stamina for the bash just a little. A flick of the wrist will be enough
Alteration is very easy to level just spam some protection spells when you can, it's worth it as there are some handy perks. I find that shock spells can really ruin my playstyle so having some resistances comes in handy.
Magic Resistance: starting at level 30 there are 3 levels giving you a straight 10% resistance to spells passively, no reason not to get this perk.
Atronach: This perk unlocks at level 100, so it is quite the grind to get but if you do get there it will mean you passively abosorb spells converting them to mana, what a fantastic idea!
Blocking is not the playstyle for everyone but I enjoy getting in the face of the enemys and slapping them with some metal. if you are using the Targe then you will want to pick up these Perks.
Shield wall: although if you have enemys stunlocked it may not be the most useful. but whats the harm in blocking more damage for those times. being the first perk in the tree you will also have to take atleast one point.
Deflect arrows: a fun skill and necessary to get the next perk. though you don't have to use this it can feel pretty heroic deflecting an arrow like a true Spartan!
Elemental protection: This perk is unlocked at level 50 but well worth it, when raising your shield your resistances to the elements will be increased by 50% (blocking half the damage) Really effective for those flying lizards all over skyrim. when they breath all over you just raise your shield.
What would Skyrim be without a lot of shouting! well you want to watch out with using these but some are very useful! here are the ones I like the most.
This one everyone will have and you can use it early on to help out but it's risky. when shouting at an enemy if the force of the shout kills the enemy you will get the kill. however if you can shout an enemy off a ledge or something so they fall to thier death then you won't get the kill.
Can't go wrong with the mobilty of this shout but if you use it you won't be able to use other shouts so not sure if it's worth it.
Not only one of the coolest shouts in the game but very useful, slow time heal up or run to safety. so many possiblitys and fun to explore!
Those scaled birds that breath fire annoying you again! no worries shout at them to come down and fight like a man then slap them with your shield, make sure to slap them in the wing to cripple them and stop them from taking off again.
If you're playing the clean hands, super legit pacifist then this spell comes in handy. though you can use arrows and spells to lure enemys to areas so you can sneak past. this is very handy.
Found this shout and obviously tried to abuse it, it's literally the perfect shout for a pacifist. Making it so you can't be harmed unless you hurt them. My favourite part is that you won't die from falling damage so go try to fly, careful it doesn't run out mid way!
Clearly this is a handy shout although I don't like it as under the Combat stat you can see how many people you have disarmed. so if you want that page clean it can get annoying or confusuing.