THE VITAE WARRIOR
The Vitae Warrior is a vampire spellsword; a deadly combination of swordmanship, blood magic, and supernatural speed that wreaks havoc to anyone standing in their way. Their blood magic not only inflicts damage but also siphons the enemy’s health to replenish the wielder’s vitality. Combining the vampiric powers with the warrior skillset of the Redguard race, the Vitae Warrior is an offensive juggernaut capable of wiping out groups of enemies in an instant.
Name - Shaula T'zhill
Race - Redguard
Origin - Leki's Blade, Hammerfell
Age - ?
Class - Spellsword
Standing Stone - Atronarch
Attributes - 1 Magicka/2 Health/1 Stamina
Deity - Leki
Factions - Stormcloaks, Dark Brotherhood, Clan Volkihar
Allignment - Chaotic Neutral
Before living as a vampire, Shaula T’zhill was one of the fiercest and accomplished swordsmen in Hammerfell. Like many Alik’r Warriors she was trained at a young age and learned ancient sword techniques like the Yokudans who followed the “Way of the Sword”, a martial philosophy on blade mastery. Her blade skills were proven during the Alliance War as she slaughtered many enemies consisting of necromancers, Daedra, and the Imperial Legion.
After the war, she went on a mission with a group of Ash’abah to deal with some vampires but was infected. Since the mission was far away from towns and cities, Shaula was unable to find a cure and had succumb to vampirism. Upon returning to her hometown of Leki's Blade, she was banished upon entering since the region forbids any involvement with the undead.
As centuries past living in the shadows, Shaula understood how the blood within was giving her strength, but at times almost uncontrollable power that caused her to lose control. While she snuck into cities to feed on individuals, she reverted to her training methods to control the blood within her. One evening, she witnessed a battle between a small group of Alik’r Warriors against an Elven infantry. Staying hidden for so long made Shaula miss fighting back in the 2nd Era and decided to join the Alik’r to repel the army invaders. Although her sword skills were rusty, the blood magic within gave her great strength as she was able to eliminate any elf with one swing of her sword. The battle lasted from the night into the early morning with only Shaula and a couple of the Alik’r left standing. They were grateful in helping them but realised she was a vampire as the sunlight forced her to retreat into the shade. Shaula begged to join them, but they refused reminding her of the Redguard traditions of no form of interaction with the undead. However, one advised her that if she wanted to fight against the Empire and Aldmeri Dominion, she would have to go to Skyrim in the midst of a Civil War. And so she headed East.
Ordinator - Overhaul of the perk system. Most noteworthy are skills contributing to a spellsword playstyle while enhancing movement speed in light armor.
Sacrosanct - Overhaul of the vampire system. Adds abilities, hemomancy spells, a ranking system, and various progressions.
Imperious - Overhaul of racial abilities and stats. Redguards will have abilities to handle multiple opponents at once.
Wintersun - Adds religion and worship for deities. Shaula will be worshipping Leki of the Yokudan Pantheon.
Andromeda - Overhaul of the Standing Stones. The Atronarch Stone will grant better spell effectiveness while being able to recover magicka after slaying enemies.
Apocalypse - Adds more spells. The build will use Ocato’s Recital and Spell Twine along with other destructions spells.
Summermyst - Adds additional enchantments. The build will use enchantments that absorbs enemies’ health and stamina to replenish Shaula’s.
Alternate Start - Used to start as a vampire or as a member of the Alik'r.
Ultimate Combat/TK Dodge/Mortal Enemies - I usually use these for combat. It makes enemies more challenging and combat more dynamic while adding dodging mechanics for more fluid movement.
High Level Enemies - This build is quite powerful, so I would recommend an enemy overhaul. HLE will make enemies challenging during late game since they will scale with your character. Of course, any type of enemy overhaul is ideal, but I’d recommend this one if you never tried any enemy overhaul before.
Uncapper/20% Perk Points - The build requires 58 perk points, but since it only specializes in 6 skills you can use one of these mods to obtain it by level 50. Any perks left over can be used as you see fit.
Blood Witch Armor - High quality armor set that fits nicely with a female Redguard character. Can be found during the House of Horrors quest.
Warmonger Armory - Armor mod that adds a Redguard themed set that I used during the Dark Brotherhood and Civil War questline. Also has Noble Vampire Armor that can be looted of certain NPCs during the Dawnguard questline.
No Enchantments Restrictions/Cloaks of Skyrim - Since the Blood Witch Armor has no headset, I used a cloak since the Redguard preset I was using did not look right with a circlet on. The No Enchantment Restrictions mod will allow you to place any enchantments on any type of clothing or armor, but its only needed for the cloak.
Shaula is an accomplished swordsman. Trained under the best blademasters in the Alik’r Desert, she is naturally gifted in utilizing her sword to strike down opponents through combat prowess and expertise. Her talent was so great at one point, that many blademasters thought she may have been a sword-singer before being infected with vampirism.
- Furious Strength – Power attack damage with one-handed weapons increased by 15% plus 0.1% per point of Stamina. Unlocks decapitations.
- Cross Cut 2/2 - Unblocked regular attacks with a sword increase the damage of your power attacks against the target by 25/50% for 4 seconds.
- Windswept - Sideways power attacks with a sword fling targets backwards up to 6 feet, dealing up to 40% more damage based on distance traveled.
- Wandering Warrior - Whenever you defeat at least 4 humanoids and/or animals in a single battle, you gain a permanent +1% bonus to one-handed damage. This effect stacks up to +20%.
While Shaula at one point had great speed and agility on the battlefield, being a vampire has empowered her with superhuman speed enabling her to strike in all directions in a blink of an eye. Wearing light armor enables her to move around quickly, dodge attacks, and deal critical strikes.
- Windrunner - Move 10% faster in combat if wearing all Light Armor.
- Evasive Leap - If wearing all Light Armor, jump in combat to cause all incoming attacks and spells to miss for 1 second. This effect has a 5 second cooldown.
- Wardancer - Your agility enables you to strike more effectively, granting 20% more attack damage and critical damage if wearing all Light Armor. This effect is lost for 6 seconds whenever you get struck by an unblocked attack or a hostile spell in combat.
- Tempting Fate - You gain 20% movement speed if you are not blocking during an enemy's power attack. If the power attack misses, the effect lasts until combat ends or until you get struck by a power attack.
While searching for more information on blood magic, Shaula gained entrance into the College of Winterhold and learned how to utilize both her talents in swordsmanship and destruction magic. She learned not only to become a more skilled spellsword, but how to use enchantments to make her a stronger warrior.
- Spellscribe - Grants the "Spellscribe" power: use it to store the spell you are dual casting. Your power attacks unleash the stored spell for free, with a cooldown based on Enchanting skill.
- Thunderstruck - Weapon enchantments are 25% more effective when delivered by a power attack
- Might and Magic - You are adept at weaving blade and magic. Spells cast with your left hand are 10% more effective if you are wielding a weapon in your right hand. Attacks with a weapon in your right-hand deal 10% more damage if you are holding a spell in your left hand.
- Twin Enchantment - Can place two enchantments upon the same item.
Realizing how useful her blood magic is against her foes, Shaula focuses on the school of Alteration to improve her spellsword capabilities. She also discovers different methods to augment her skills to increase its effectiveness in combat.
- Spellblade - Whenever you cast a spell with one hand, you deal 20% more attack damage for 4 seconds.
- Welloc’s Dormant Arcana - Choose a spell type and 3 magic effects. The chosen magic effects will activate when you are affected by the chosen spell type. Use a flesh spell and select +50 armor, 10% Destruction magnitude, and 5% speed as your magical effects
- Energy Roil - Whenever you cast a spell with one hand, reduces the armor of nearby enemies within 10 feet by 150 points for 4 seconds.
- Rend Resistances - Whenever you attack with a weapon, reduces the magic resistance of nearby enemies within 10 feet by 15% for 4 seconds.
Understanding the powers of blood magic, she uses it to inflict damage against her foes while also draining their life’s essence. Elemental Destruction magic will also be used as a utility against foes.
- Destruction Mastery 2/2 – Destruction spells cost less and are more powerful per level of Destruction.
- Destruction Dual Casting – Can dual-cast Destruction magic, increasing its effectiveness and cost. This will be used to store the Spellscribe ability.
Like many warriors in Hammerfell, Shaula learned to craft and improve her weapons and armor. Gaining a better understanding of her magical abilities, she expanded her knowledge to improve enchanted items.
- Smithing Mastery 2/2 - Can create Steel items at a forge or anvil and improve them twice as much. All items can be improved 10% more.
- Arcane Blacksmith – Can improved enchanted weapons and armor.
Blue Blood - After feeding on a certain individual in Riverwood, Shaula discovers a great power within this person's blood. She decides to seek out other important individuals (Faction leaders, Generals...) to acquire more abilities.
Hemomancy - Being blood-starved for days, Shaula is forced to drain the life's essence on a sleeping victim but is taught a new blood magic spell. If she wants to acquire more of these powers, she'll have to feed on sleeping victims.
Civil War - After helping a group of Alik'rs defeat a Thalmor army, Shaula heads towards Skyrim to continue her fight against the Aldmeri Dominion. Upon seeing how the Thalmor have treated citizens due to their worship of Talos, she joins the Stormcloaks. She also sees a resemblance of Ulfric to liberate Skyrim from the Empire just like Hammerfell did.
Dark Brotherhood - Needing a place to stay, Shaula joins the Dark Brotherhood to remain within the shadows. Although she despises performing assassinations, she realizes that draining the victime's life essence grants her additional blood magic powers and will make her stronger. Most of the assassination will be part of the Hemomancy questline.
Dawnguard - Although her visit to Dawnguard was only meant to feed on Isran, the whereabouts of an ancient vampire in Dimhollow Crypt kept her curious. After waking Serana from her sarcophagus and taking her home to Castle Volkihar, she meets her father Lord Harkon and offers Shaula to be a Vampire Lord. Relunctantly, she accepts but only to be around her own kind.
College of Winterhold - Shaula gains access to the College of Winterhold to find more information of the blood magic within her. She also discovers new methods of magic that will further augment her skills in Alteraton and Enchanting that contribute to the spellsword playstyle. However, the discovery of the Eye of Magnus and the presence of a Thalmor operative's interest in the artifact leaves Shaula suspicious of him.
Red Sand Dance - With the Imperious mod, Redguards will have a quest that upon defeating 3 or more enemies in combat 30 times will be granted the Red Sand Dance power. The ability will slow time by 90% when sprinting and lasts for 45 seconds.
House of Horrors - This is where the Blood Witch armor set is found and you'll have to defeat 2 high-level vampires to aquire it. For the quest, don't end up worshipping Molag Bal though the shrine blessing of reducing Destruction magic cost can be useful.
Destroy the Dawnguard - With Harkon's defeat, Shaula knows the Dawnguard will stop at nothing to destroy any remaining vampires so she decides to wipe them out.
Vampirism is not a blessing. Ancient vampires may be powerful and feared among the populace, but they start their unlife in a weakened state and must overcome hardships to attain the power they seek. As a vampire, you must feed. Each day that goes by without feeding makes you thirstier and weaker. There are four stages of thirst and you progress to the next stage after at least 24 hours without feeding, though occasionally you may be able to delay the onset of thirst by a few hours. The Vampire ability in your magic effects menu tells you how thirsty you are.
- Blood Starved (At this point, your vampirism is so obvious that onlookers will attack you on sight.)
Note: Sacrosanct is quite a huge overhaul to the vampire system so I'll only focus on the abilities that are significant to the build. One thing to keep in mind is to be always Sated since thats when the build is at its strongest.
- Dominate: Illusion spells cast by a vampire are 25% more powerful and last 25% longer on creatures and people.
- Moonlit Waters: A vampire can swim underwater without drowning, and walk across the surface.
- Resist Disease: Your Vampiric blood gives you 100% resistance to disease.
- Resist Frost: Your Vampiric blood gives you 50 (Sated) to 20 (Blood Starved)% resistance to Frost.
- Resist Poison: Your Vampiric blood gives you 100% resistance to poison.
- Still Heart: A vampire is 25% harder to detect by creatures and people while sneaking.
- Trespassing Curse: When trespassing in someone else's home, lose 10 points of Magicka and Stamina per second.
- Weakness to Fire: Your Vampiric blood gives you 20 (Sated) to 50 (Blood Starved)% weakness to Fire.
- Weakness to Sunlight: Health, Magicka, and Stamina do not recover while in Sunlight and are reduced by 25 (Sated) to 100 (Blood Starved) points.
Vampires also receive the following abilities depending on thirst. As you become thirstier, you lose beneficial abilities and gain detrimental abilities instead.
- Fortitude: Vampiric blood makes you hard to kill. Upon taking fatal damage, you come back to life, becoming thirstier.
- Kiss of Death: Draining a victim (killing them by feeding) permanently increases Health, Magicka and Stamina by 1.
- Presence: Your Vampiric charm makes intimidation attempts twice as likely to succeed, and buying items is 5% cheaper.
- Wassail: The Beast awakens below 25% Health in combat, draining Health, Magicka and Stamina during combat and reducing them by 10 points until you feed.
- The Beast: Unable to Feed and can only Drain mortal victims, which kills them. (Immortal targets can't be drained)
when Blood Starved...
- Mockery of Life: Healing spells and effects no longer heal you. Potions of Blood have no effect. You don't regenerate Health.
Vampires also receive powers depending on thirst. As you become thirstier, your power set gradually shifts from vampiric charm to vampiric might as the Beast makes its presence known.
- Blood Cauldron: At will - Expend some of your Vampiric blood to replenish Health, Magicka and Stamina, becoming thirstier.
...when Thirsty, turns into...
- Blood Revel: At will - In combat, gain 25% bonus attack damage and spell effectiveness for 120 seconds or until combat ends, but activate Wassail.
Draining a sleeping victim may teach you arcane secrets of the blood, in the form of 7 Hemomancy spells. The first spell requires 1 draining, increasing by 1 for each consecutive secret. Hemomancy spells are classified as Destruction and deal magic damage to living and undead targets.
- 1 draining - Blood Seed: (Apprentice) Jagged bone shards grow in a living or undead target, dealing 6 magic damage for 10 seconds.
- 3 drainings - Blood Brand: (Adept) Living or undead target takes 5 magic damage per second. After 10 seconds, detonates for 100 damage.
- 6 drainings - Blood Garden: (Adept) Casts Blood Seed on all targets, inflicting 10 magic damage for 10 seconds.
- 10 drainings - Blood Scourge: (Expert) Living or undead target takes 20 magic damage for 15 seconds. On death, spreads to all nearby targets.
- 15 drainings - Blood Ankh: (Expert) Hexes the corpse of a living or undead being, causing it to levitate and explode for 200 magic damage.
- 21 drainings - Profaned Sun: (Master) Flaming star that follows the target for 20 seconds, dealing 25 magic and fire damage to living targets near it.
- 28 drainings - Borrowed Time: (Master) Deals 5 magic damage for 20 seconds to the living or undead. When time runs out, deals damage equal to all Health lost by the target during this time.
Vampire progression is dependent on time spent as a vampire, but you can also feed on a victim to age by 1 hour or drain a victim to age by 1 day. The Vampire ability in your magic effects menu displays your progress. Upon advancing to the next rank, you may choose an additional ability or power from a list of 13. The ability chosen should be done in this order:
- Wicked Wind: At will - Dash instantly to a target location within 15 feet.
- Vicissitude: Hemomancy spells other than Blood Seed do 25% more damage to targets affected by Blood Seed.
- Cauldron of Fire: After using Blood Cauldron, deal double attack damage and take half attack damage for 30 seconds.
- Dance with the Beast: Attack damage dealt doubled and attack damage taken halved while affected by Wassail, until combat ends.
- King Among Kine: You no longer lose any powers when feeding.
- Oberon's Grail: Reduces the chance to fall victim to Wassail in combat by 75%.
- Path of Humanity: Increased chance to delay the progression of Vampiric thirst.
Blue Blood is a side quest where feeding on powerful individuals will grant you an additional ability. Most noteworthy ones are:
- Potence: Vampiric strength grants 15% more attack damage, increased to 30% when Sated. (1st feeding)
- Tooth and Claw: Your attacks deal 25% more damage to targets affected by a Hemomancy spell such as Blood Seed. (4th feeding)
- Daywalker: You are immune to non-lethal Sunlight. (7th feeding)
Although the build does not require to be in Vampire Lord form, there are still some perks and abilities that play a vital role. The 1st noteworthy perk is:
- Starving Artist: In mortal form, Hemomancy spells used against people absorb Health equal to 25% of their base damage (dealing that much extra damage and healing the caster for the same amount). Killing people with Hemomancy spells advances your Vampire Lord perks. Not only does this make blood magic spells more useful, but it also lets you acquire the Vampire Lord perks in mortal form. Once you have this, you'll only need to transform to access the Vampire Lord skill tree.
Other noteworthy perks include:
- Exsanguinate: Your Vampiric Drain spell in mortal form deals 50% more damage when fighting only one enemy, and can be dual cast for a chance to stagger enemies.
- Blood From a Stone - Blood Magic, the Raze spell in your right hand and Hemomancy in mortal form can now damage Daedra and automatons.
- Court's Chef: Able to create Blood Potions at a cooking pot. Using Human Flesh yields 1 Blood Potion and using a Human Heart yields 2 Blood Potions. Additionally, consuming a Blood Potion advances Vampire Lord perks.
- Make Them Beautiful: In mortal form, Hemomancy spells used against people have 25% chance to tear apart victims below 25% Health, instantly killing them
- Lamae's Pyre: Hemomancy Power: A 50 foot hurricane of flames that enwraps the caster for 10 seconds. Enemies take 75 fire damage per second. Can be used once, then becomes unavailable until you feed on a sleeping victim. (Magicka cost: 300. 150 with the Atronarch Stone activated)
- Celerity: Able to move at unnatural speed. Movement speed increased by 10% in mortal form.
ABILITIES & SPELLS
- Dust Storm: Killing people increases attack damage and critical strike damage and reduces spell costs by 30% for 5 seconds.
- Nomadic Heritage: When not in combat, you have unlimited Stamina. This also applies to vampires.
- Tenacity: Magicka and Stamina regenerate up to 100% faster, based on missing Health.
- Red Sand Dance: 1/day - Enter a battle trance for 45 seconds, slowing time by 90% while sprinting.
The Red Sand Dance power is acquired from killing 3 or more enemies in combat 30 times. Although it may take a while, the power is very useful to avoid attacks and dealing with heavy and slow moving enemies.
- Blur: Increase movement speed by 20% in combat.
The Shadow Stone ability will only be used to gain extra speed in combat. Once you acquire the Windrunner perk from the Light Armor skill tree, switch to...
- Corrupted Arcana: Magicka does not regenerate. Each death within 50 feet restores Magicka equal to 25 times their level.
- Oblivion Bound: If you have Magicka remaining, spells are 25% more effective and cost 50% less Magicka.
- Devour from Within: 1/day - Paralyzes a living target, absorbing 50 Magicka for 10 seconds. When depleted, absorbs Health instead.
Both the Atronarch Stone abilities and 1 per day power is a method of absorbing essence from killing enemies by regaining magicka instead of relying on magicka regeneration. The Devour from Withn power is aquired by locating all Standing Stones.
“Bring the Civil War to a conclusion. Make and improve weapons. Master the skills of the Warrior.”
- Shrine blessing - Fortify Light Armor: Armor rating of light armor pieces is increased by 10%.
- Follower - Spirit Sword: Power attacks ignore X% of an opponent's armor (based on favor with Leki).
- Devotee - Battle Meditation: During prayer, you may spend 5% favor to gain X% melee damage (based on favor with Leki) for 10 minutes or 5 battles. Costs 5% favor.
Shaulla was trained at Leki's Blade under the guidance of blademasters who studied the Goddess of Abherrant Swordmanship. While she studied other famous sword-singers and Ansei warriors, Shaula took great interest in Leki and her history. Most noteworthy was her importance in defeating the Lefthanded Elves by introducing the Ephemeral Feint as well as establishing a settlement in the Alik'r desert. Under Leki's guideship, Shaula is given both offensive and defesnsive abilities.
- Hemomancy - Shaula's main source of destruction magic comes from her blood magic powers. She will use Blood Garden as her Spellscribe ability that creates a AOE effect when striking a target. Blood Scourge will drain a target's health and upon dying, will spread to others. With the Vicissitude and Starving Artist ability, the blood magic spells are more effective draining the target's health to replenish yours. For higher tier enemies, she will use the master spells Profaned Sun and Borrowed Time.
- Ocato's Recital - Stores the spell in your left hand and will activate when entering combat. Although you can store up to 3 spells, this will ony be used for a Flesh spell
- Spell Twine - Bind a chosen effect to the spell in your left hand. It is triggered whenever the spell is cast. Vampiric Drain will be used to bind the Heal effect making the spell more useful.
- Elemental Destruction - Fire, frost, and shock spells will serve as a utility against certain foes. Fire magic will be useful against the undead while shock can be applied against mages. Frost magic can help slow down enemies making Shaulla's speed more effective against them. Note: If your using an enemy overhaul like Know Your Enemy or Advance Adversary Encounters then elemental destruction magic will be a lot useful.
Aerial Maneuvers - Windrunner, Evasive Leap, Wicked Wind
- Shaula utilizes her speed, quick reflexes, and supernatural abilities to avoid attacks and close the distance on her enemies.
Blood Siphon - Vampiric Drain, Spell Twine (Healing), Exsanguinate
- When low on health, Shaula will use her vampiric drain spell to absorb her enemy's health which is strengthened in Sated form and will cause the target to periodically stagger.
Die By the Sword - Wicked Wind, Overrun (Spellscribe), Tooth & Claw, Windswept
- While sprinting, Shaula teleports to a nearby enemy and delivers a powerful blood magic attack from her sword. With the target affected by the Hemomancy spell, she follows up with a sideways power attack sending the target backward, dealing more damage.
Crimson Implosion – Blood Ankh, Spellscribe (Blood Garden), Visscitude, Blood Scourge
- Tapping into her vampiric powers, Shaula employs a wide variety of blood magic powers on her foes to create damaging area of effects while absorbing their essence.
Scarlet Desert Inferno – Profaned Sun, Red Sand Dance, Lamae’s Pyre
- Shaula hurls a flaming star of blood magic at an enemy, then utilizes both her special racial and vampiric ability to sprint around the battlefield damaging anyone inside the fire-like tornado.
Dance of Death - Blood Cauldron (Cauldron of Fire), Blood Revel (Wassail), Dance with the Beast
- Using her expertise as a swordsman while summoning the blood rage within her, Shaula unleashes her strength and becomes an unstoppable juggernaut disposing anyone against her.
- Sand Assassin Armor Set (Warmonger Armory)
- Dark Brotherhood Shrouded Hood & Boots
Never been a fan of Dark Brotherhood outfit, so I went with an armor set fitting for the character’s race. The Sand Assassin Armor can be crafted right away since it doesn't require any smithing perks. The Shrouded hood and shoes/boots will be used for sneaking into NPC’s home for the Hemomancy questline.
- Noble Vampire Armor - Fortify Destruction
- Vampire Gauntlets - Fortify One-handed
- Vanpire Boots - Resist Fire
- Shrouded Hood or Novice Hood
- Nightweaver's Band - Fortify Destruction & Sneaking by 10%
- Amulet of Resist Magic
- Scimitar - Fiery Soul Trap
The Noble Vampire Armor can be looted off from the 2 vampires at the end of the Bloodstone Chalice questline. Hopefully one of them has the red version. It fits well with the Shrouded Hood though the Novice Hood is more practical since having the Nightweaver’s Band helps with sneaking. I always had the shrouded shoes in my inventory in case I had to sneak into people’s homes to feed. The Resist Magic necklace can be obtained from Brelyna’s side quest or can be enchanted yourself. I used the Fiery Soul Trap enchantment for the scimitar as a faster way of leveling enchanting so its completely optional.
- Vitae Warrior Armor – Fortify Armor Rating & Imminent Victory
- Vitae Warrior Gauntlets – Fortify One-handed & Stamina
- Vitae Warrior Boots – Resist Fire & Windfall
- Vitae Warrior Cloak/Circlet – Resist Magic & Fortify Destruction
- Vitae Warrior Amulet (Bonehawk) – Resist Magic & Fortify Destruction
- Vitae Warrior Ring (Bonehawk) – Absorb Health & Stamina
- Harkon’s Sword
These are the enchantments I believe work best with the build. Most notable one is the ring with the 2 absorb enchantments that fits the theme of absorbing essence from enemies. The Windfall enchantment is also important giving you a 3% chance to recover X points of health, stamina, and magicka and this works with the Atronarch stone active. Also, Harkon's Sword does replenish magicka.
With the Alternate Start mod there are 2 options to begin: either as a vampire in a secluded lair or an Alik’r Warrior from Hammerfell. Now with Sacrosanct installed there is a risk with using Alternate Start as a vampire because some features may not work, and you may end up with game breaking glitches. Therefore, I recommend starting out with the Alik’r background (at least you get your curved sword) and either add a Potion of Embracing through the console or head to the nearest vampire lair to get infected. Nearest one will be East of Ivarstead just past of Gjukar’s Monument in a small cave. Also, south of the cave on the hill is where the Yokudan Shrine is. Speaking of which, after using the Start option, you will be asked to worship one of the Yokudan Gods and there is no penalty for being a vampire while worshipping Leki. Raising Leki’s favour for this build may take a while since you will only be improving one-handed and smithing skills, and completing the Civil War takes time. One thing you should always do is Pray daily. You will receive a message saying, “You haven’t prayed in a while” and allowing a few days to go by without praying diminishes your favor quickly. I got to 100% favor in my playthrough when I was around level 20-25 after completing the Dark Brotherhood questline but had not started the Civil War quest yet. Though I recommend to do these storylines around the same time for roleplaying purposes.
I know this build is more about gameplay mechanics and action combat but its probably the most fun I've had from playing Skyrim. Taking out group of enemies by combining spells, abilities, and power attacks is definitely rewarding and there's nothing wrong about being a badass too. So if your into a fast-paced, action-oriented playstyle I encourage you to at least give this one a shot. I appreciate any type of feedback too so feel free to comment.