Character Build: The Garlythi

4/6/14 - Hey everyone. I had this build deleted awhile ago and came across it in my saved files. I thought I could revamp the idea but didn't get around to it so I thought I would re-upload it just to have it elsewhere and to keep it among my others.

This build is an extension from my exploration of The Khulari and now discovery of another vampire bloodline that is quite impressive when applied to the game of Skyrim. This build is also inspired by the various shield mage builds on the site, specifically The Spellblocker by ricardo maia. It is my take on a mage that uses a shield and combining it with my third vampire build...

The Garlythi

The Garlythi are a vampire bloodline found in the Iliac Bay. Their bloodline specific powers include an ability to magically shield themselves from damage. Using this information, I decided to create a hulking, shield toting Orc (wearing no armor!!!) that uses repeated shield bashes to stun enemies while continuously firing off fire destruction spells and cloaks. Using the bloodline's lore, The Garlythi are able to shield themselves from all magic damage while also absorbing oncoming spells to protect himself and also recharging their own magicka to continue their magic onslaught.

Defense is this build's main objective. Alteration and block provide extreme levels of protection with the right perks as well as great battle tactics. On the offense, destruction fire spells provide a ranged attack as well as added damage when up close with fire cloak/wall. Fire spells are a great fit for this build as it bodes well with the rage of the Orc. Conjuration provides an offensive back up with zombies taking down foes while you stun them. The Orc's berserker rage is just icing on the cake, especially early on, and is good to note it increases bash damage, making deadly bash a HUGE source of physical damage! Let's break it down.


Race: Orc ... Iliac Bay + Berserker Rage's 50% damage reduction just make it fit so well.

Stone: Lord + Atronach (Aetherial Crown) and the occasional Ritual

Major Skills: Alteration, Block, Restoration

Minor Skills: Destruction, Conjuration

Dragon Shouts: Become Ethereal, Disarm, Drain Vitality, Fire Breath, Marked for Death, Soul Tear



Shield: Spellbreaker (combined with Ward Absorb)
Head: Aetherial Crown
Chest: Vampire Robes
Hands: Vampire Gloves
Feet: Fine Boots (Black)
Ring: Ring of Namira
Amulet: Anything with +stats


This build's use of vampirism is for the great perk necromage, boosting our existing perks and skills/spells. With Necromage, end game stats provide a 100% spell absorption through the use of the Atronach stone and perk! Up until then, Spellbreaker is your best friend with combination of Ward Absorb, allowing you to absorb spells to fire off more destruction. Your vampiric blood also provides the cool vampire daily powers which are useful and is so cool to role-play which is my favorite.

Skills and Perks


Alteration: All perks!

Block: All perks!

Restoration: Novice - Adept, Regeneration, Respite, Recovery 2/2, Necromage, Ward Absorb, Avoid Death

Conjuration: Novice - Master, Necromancy, Dark Souls, Twin Souls

Destruction: Novice - Expert, Augmented Flames 2/2


The general idea for the perk approach is to have as much defense as possible without all the lumbering heavy armor to lug around.

Perk layout




Being this is my second vampire bloodline in the Elder Scrolls universe I wanted to explore, and hopefully more to come, I want to make a big shift from my previous vampires. My Fearmonger wanted to have enemies run and The Garlythi wants face to face fights to shield bash, so no taking of Intense Flames. The Khulari was based off of powerful sword tactics, but taking that out of the equation allows for a required smarter gameplay in timing of shield bashes and destruction spells.

As you progress, it will be good to know about Vegetable Soup. It allows for unlimited shield bashing since it is recovering 1 stamina per second, the minimum amount needed to power bash. Is this a trick/cheap? Maybe. But being a shield focused character, until you have respite, it will be hard to bash enemies into a stun to fight them continuously. This build is taking away destruction dual cast perk Impact and replacing that stun with your powerful shield.

If you have not noticed, it is a NON CRAFTING build which is something I LOVE doing. Having no ties to town or a workbench/alchemy station/arcane enchanter is just great as you may explore worry free about equipment. I went for a heavy vampire look (all black with the Aetherial Crown) and it looks pretty sweet.

As for perks, there are only 5 skills. Perk placements should be heavily geared towards alteration and block first to keep your survival up, especially on master. Having conjuration and necromancy linked with a vampire build is so cool and your minions will be a help in tough bouts early on.

The Ritual Stone adds a certain overkill to this build as well. Using the Aetherial Crown, you can have the crown set with the Ritual Stone, meaning when you take off the crown and then re-equip it, the stone's ability will be "reset", meaning you can fire off another AoE necromancy spell that raises al the surrounding undead. On Master difficulty, this is something to marvel at as you charge into battle with 20+ zombies!


Well there you have it. I am hoping to try out one or two other vampire bloodlines as they offer some unique gameplay options. This build is insanely fun and VERY hard to kill!


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  • Hats off to you sir! Spellshields/Shield Mages are one of my favorite builds and your version is a fantastic foundation to develop my own. I appreciate the direction.

  • I truly enjoyed reading this Henson - Shield Mages are a rather rare thing from what I've seen. Don't forget your Rank:Apprentice tag

  • If you   have the creation club the zombies and bone wolf make   a ideal fit   for this build


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