Character Build:Snake Oil Vagabond

12287424659?profile=RESIZE_400xSnake Oil Vagabond



The Snake oil Vagabond is a Khajiit who grew up from town to town with traveling caravans and circus shows. His father was an acrobat and fire breather with “The Atronach Follies” who performed across Cyrodil and Skyrim. His mother was a tavern keeper and a worshiper of Khernarthi who would sell her bootlegged potions and skooma to people from the back of a wagon during circus shows . 

From his mother he learned to craft and hustle homemade snake oil potions and remedies to sell in order to have enough money to survive the winters. His mother would brew some of the finest skooma and different mind altering potions which kept a steady flow of returning customers. “It’s good to the last drop, come  and get it folks!” He would often yell on the busy street corners across Tamriel. 

When not helping his mothers bootlegging endeavors the snake oil hustler would be working  with his father at the circus where he learned many skills and took inspiration from watching and helping the performers. From the escape artists he learned to pick locks, from the sword swallowers he grew fascination with  blades, from the acrobats and dare devils he was taught alteration magic. He always wanted to learn to breathe fire like his father and he would train with him often hoping to one day master the technique. 

The  father was a powerful khajiit warrior who for years was a bandit that robbed and pillaged the coasts of Cyrodill before amassing such a bounty that he joined the circus in order to conceal his identity.  He taught the young khajiit how to  defend himself as well as to be  street smart when in the big city’s. His father also taught him  to poison his weapons in combat in order to quickly kill an enemy. Hunting expeditions were numerous and educational and he grew to be a very strong and skilled hunter.

The circus had been in Skyrim for a few weeks and decided to set up on the outskirts of the town of Solitude to host a free show where an illusionist was going to tame a wild Sabre cat and make him jump through a ring of fire. They had advertised well and the news spread quickly about their arrival.


It was a crowded night and people travelled from all over Skyrim to see the show. The illusionist was set to begin the act when  the Sabre cats broke loose from a pen and  began mauling attendees and that’s when all hell broke loose. One of the guards killed the Sabre cat immediately but when the illusionist tried to stop him and got in the way he was struck down. All around the camp broke out into a riot and the Guards began beating and arresting anyone involved in the circus. His father, seeing what was happening, immediately charged at the guards to try and stop them but he was littered with arrows and fell to the ground lifeless.

The snake oil vagabond was filled with rage and he began attacking guards with his claws ripping them apart. It was too late to reach his mother for she was laying lifeless upon the wagon, the tears and anger were too much to hold back and the Vagabond let out a terrifying roar . The Snake oil vagabond was knocked unconscious and  woke up in the cart to helgen..

This character is a master of alteration and paralysis and uses it all the time whether it’s infiltrating into a group of enemies and casting mass paralysis or using it from a distance before charging into battle with the ebony blade. He will use all types of bolts from the dawn gaurd but cork bulb are a favorite and should be used most. It’s onslaught of paralyzing attacks you can shoot them with paralysis then attack with a poisoned dagger killing them effortlessly. Use ebony flesh and dragon hide for difficult battles. 

    • Armor :cultist robes, bone mold gloves, heavy chiten helmet, heavy chiten boots, amulet fortify fortify health, ring of peerless archery. Magic resistance is important for this build so try to get some on your armor pieces.


  • Armor for demon flesh: Ebony mail, heavy chitin boots fortify sneak, Ahzidal gloves, masqu of clavicus vile.
  • Weapons:advanced dwarven crossbow enchanted with chaos  damage, ebony blade, kahvoziens fang enchanted with paralysis.
  • Major skills: archery:overdraw 5/5, eagle eye, steady hand ½, power shot. Alchemy:alchemist ⅘. Physician,poisoner, concentrated poison. Alteration take everything but mage armor. sneak:stealth2/5, backstab,deadly aim,assassins blade.two handed:barbarian ⅘,champions stance devastating blow.
  • Minor skills:speech:haggling ⅕,allure,merchant. Heavy armor:juggernaut ⅘ ,fists of steel,cushioned,conditioning, well fitted.smithing:steel,dwarven ,elven,arcane handed,enchanting:no perks but will do light enchantments on items.


  Special moves

“Demon flesh”: Ebony flesh +ebony mail+azihdals gloves +masque of clavicus vile.This is for boss fights.

I role  play this as an alteration spell that you acquire from  the necromancy ritual when you kill Lydia over and over until your evil pays off.

Smoke and mirrors: Potion of invisibility +mass paralysis+scroll of destruction like fire storm

From manufacturing all of your snake oils, poisons and elixirs you have ample cash to trade for the most expensive scrolls in all of skyrim. Utilize them on your journey to find more ingredients and to conquer obstacles.

Snake bite: Paralysis from a distance+poison of lingering damage + dagger enchanted with paralysis.

This is extremely deadly. You shoot the enemy from a distance, knocking them down, then you run up with a poisoned dagger and stab them over and over, keeping them paralyzed until they die.


The snake oil vagabond will craft any potion under the sun and is constantly scouring the wilds for ingredients and recipes. Although most of the high end potions that he makes go up for sale at the market he always keeps a large variety of stock that he keeps on hand for any occasion.


  • Twilight elixer: Vampire dust+chaurus eggs is a potion of invisibility used only for special moves and occasions.
  • Carbolic acid: Scathecrow+skeever tail+death bell.
  • Wizard oil: Potion of fortify magicka so you can cast higher level alterationspells before you level up high enough.
  • Dead shot: garlic+juniper berries+elves ear This is for sneak attacks with crossbow potion of regenerate health and fortify archery.


  • Snake oil:Death bell+charaus egg+imp stool potion of weakness to poison and damage health.
  • Liquid septim's:potion of waterbreathing that you sell.


The first half of this build is a sneak archer and alchemist play through. You will keep heavy armor like gauntlets  but just use regular clothes and shoes to keep your stealth up. Keep a suit of heavy armor with you with you that you will equip for certain difficult  fights to beef up your defenses and it will level up  overtime. Get into brawls in a full suit of heavy armor and level it up a few levels at a time by switching to legendary for it, this makes for a cool rowdy vagabond role play where you are toughening up.

Being khajiit gives you bonus damage to unarmed and won’t take away from other skills that you are leveling. I role play that you escape from Helgen with your head and you are in no real rush to go talk to some jarl or get caught up in the current political turmoil.  Your family just died and the circus is destroyed so you head to the town of Riverwood and start gathering ingredients for potions so you can make a quick buck. I go collect all the ingredients first thing for a handful of water breathing potions to start stacking some coin. I level up my speech skill to get the merchant perk that way I’ll be able to peddle my wears and snake oil potions any where I need. I fight with a bow and wear my prison cloths with heavy gauntlets in this early potion crafting stage

I Head to Anise’s Cabin and claim it for my own when she becomes hostile, acquiring a hideout where you can craft your  oils and tonics. When you have gathered enough poisons/healing potions head to White Run.

 From there I do Some heavy trading and set myself up with what I’ll need for an expedition, first I hire Uthgerd The Unbroken. It makes for a good first fist fight in my heavy armor and then head to Morthal and deal with the vampire menace this is where you learn to hate vampires. . I head to Solstheim to harvest scathe crow and acquire the bone mold armor off the dead guard outside town.


You hear about a missing dog and you speak to a black smith who pays you half of the reward just to start looking. You figure a little extra money is great and how hard can it be? Complete A Daedras Best Friend. Use the masque of clavicus vile for hustling the shop merchants and once in a while for a hard battle to boost your AR. After that I headed to Riften to join the Thieves Guild and to set up a fence for any stolen material I might come across. Now I have another avenue to hustle my potions and it’s always good to have friends in low places

       Join the Dawngaurd and get a CrossBow and upgrade it so you can keep coming back to buy bolts then do some exploring and ingredient collecting. Because I put off the main quest there are no dragons attacking yet and it makes it such a quiet chill land .Do quests you would imagine a wild medicine show man would do. Just try to level up to 30 spreading out your skills and acquiring what you need for this build. I used a faster leveling mod to make it not such a long grind. Honestly I kind of want to replay it without doing any of dragon born stuff but you do have to get cultist robes and it might be hard to do without you also have to kill the first dragon to get the ebony blade.

       I did Escape From Cidnha Mine and killed Madanach and a grip of quests to level up to 30.While In markarth I start the House Of Horrors Quest and I role play that I get so spooked by Molag Bal I look to Boethiah for protection. I hate vampires and I know he is the god of them, I find Boethiahs Calling and I learn of the place where the cult meets.I journey to the Shrine of Boethiah and learn that either way I’m gonna have to sacrifice someone to find safety so I travel back to Riverwood and sacrifice Faendal. It was going to be one of these two hopeless fools and I couldn’t find the heart to kill the bard because I hold entertainers in the highest of respect.  After getting the ebony mail kill the dragon in the main quest and immediately do the whispering door to acquire the ebony blade

    Boethiahs armor drove me mad with power  I feel drawn to the ritual stone where i learn to raise the dead. My thoughts continue to darken as I’m led toward Mephala hoping to escape the grips of Boethiah. Mephala knows I’m the Dragon born and her whispers make me want to kill for power. After killing the dragon the Jarl Balgruff put in my service a House Carl to aid me in my adventures.  The voice of Mephala is overwhelming as my madness drives me. I am torn because my soul is being twisted by two rival Daedra.  I head to the ritual stone  where I am manipulated by the Daedra to perform a blood ritual once again on a trusted ally. Madness prevails and I slaughter my servant in cold blood not once but 10 times over the course of 10 days resurrecting her and slaying her....finally they are pleased.

 The grief is heavy  and I feel as though I am cursed. No ale or potion can cure this sickness that devours me. I go to the shrine of Kynareth to pray and receive her blessing that I may be whole again. I embark on a pilgrimage to save the dying gilder green tree. This is a moment of clarity and peace after all of this terror and chaos. There is still good inside of me. I have to fight the evil back. Although you call upon the Demon flesh spell from time to time you only do so sparingly because of its corrupting power.


   I know that I must not be prey to the Daedra for they are the evil agents of Oblivion and they wish to claim my soul. I grow weary and long for my family and the days of merriment and drink watching the fire breathers and jugglers and bards how I wish those days would have lasted forever. I go to the college of the bards to become a member and try to sing songs of praise and help their festival to flourish once more. I must fulfill my duties as the Dragonborn if I’m to be strong enough to resist the daedras manipulation I must seek out the graybeards to master the th’uum so that I might one day see sovngard. The strange stones on solsthiem bother me very much it’s the same helpless feeling I got when under the command of darkness. I must destroy these vile cults and set the people free, only then can the medicine show wonder about the lands curing disease and instilling wonder and mystery into the world once again!


Recommended quests:

A Daedras best friend: Acquire the  masque of clavicus vile this is the first Daedric quest you will do and it makes you think that they are not so bad to begin with.

Dawngaurd: Ridding the land of vampires is a priority for me as the snake oil vagabond finds them repulsive.

Unearthed: An archaeological adventure that you finance with the money made from your profitable enterprise.

Bards college: This quest is done after you become cursed by the daedra you join the bards to be close with performers again and try to maintain your humanity(khajiitity?)

Dragon born: You are bothered by the manipulation of the people of solsthiem by the miirak and fell the need to free the people.

The Taste Of Death: Find the cannibals hideout and slaughter them all; they are even lower than vampires.

Thieves Guild: Really only the first few quests you just want access to fences.

 Boethiahs calling: Sacrifice Faendal get ebony mail get ritual stone and do the whispering door right after.

Whispering door:Ebony blade this quest sends you into madness and makes you want to go back to the lighter ways of kynareth..

Blessings Of Nature: This is a healing moment for you and helps you break away from the madness caused to you by the Daedric Princes.

The house of horrors:kill the priest of Boethiah in spite of molag bal.

In my time of need: This a great one to show case the move "smoke and mirrors" get to the waterfall where you have to fight the leader of red gaurds down an invisibility potion hit mass paralysis then a fire storm scroll watch them melt and clean them up with your ebony blade or paralysis dagger.


I also carry around an assortment of rings and amulets with different enchantments for different occasions I'll leave that up to you to decide. Basically he is distraught from losing his family and he goes down a rough road of  falling under the influence of the daedra and his quest for redemption is to break free of them by helping people and ridding the land of the vampire threat. Getting back in touch with his roots of entertainment and kynareth help get him back in order. After that he doesn't rely on the demon flesh anymore and as a master of alteration instead will cast dragonhide to aid him in his pursuit of light and good.

I also killed the dark brotherhood because they are an evil faction that he doesn't agree with. Contempt is in his heart the empire for destroying your life but you can't bring yourself to helping the racist nords. Its open to interpretation and if anyone likes the idea and wants to add to it I love that. Mostly just thought it was a cool idea really emphasize the use of poisons and paralysis. Using heavy armor for a sneak build also makes it a little trickier and you can be discovered easier making it a bit more of a challenge; cast muffle a lot! In fact I used regular shoes for parts of it when I was a lower level to avoid detection.

I also made use of selling waterbreathing potions early on. Most of your money can come from selling expensive jewels and potions so having your inventory pretty full of different armor doesn't really hurt because you don't need to loot as much from fallen enemies. I forgot to got to about 220 stamina and the rest is health and magicka if wanna use potions to make using mass paralysis easier that's an option or you could add enough magicka where you don't need to. I also used the lord stone got the agent of Mara power for extra magic resistance. Fire breath is a favorite as well for fighting undead in tandem with silver bolts and paralysis.

This is my first build so I hope you like it I’m sure I could iron it out better, I kinda wanna do a replay of it and maybe switch 2 handed for just one handed weapons and go  with nightingale sword kahvoziens fang(enchanted with paralysis) but I did enjoy the variety of poisoned dagger without any perks but sneak attack and paralysis give you a chance to slash a lot.


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    • I would recommend adding this info into the build itself, also you forgot to add Character Build to the title

      • Done.

      • What do you think?

        • Looking good, would recommend adding in more info, like stat spread, skills, perks  etc

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