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Character Build: The Agent

Tags: #Character Build Agent  #Character Build Bound Weapons  #Character Build Mage Armor  #Rank:Mythic  #Build of the Week  #Alteration  #Conjuration  #Agent  #character  #bound  #More… 
  • June 12, 2012

    The agent is a melee fighter that handles spellcasters and other combatants with relative ease.  The agent wears no armor, nor carries any weapons.  Rather, the agent uses the 'bound sword' spell, and occasionally, the 'bound bow' spell for offense.  The various '____flesh' spells enhanced by the mage armor perk is the primary defense.  This is my first build.


    I am an agent working in the service of Emperor Titus Mede II.  Until recently I was training under my mentor, Ty.  Ty’s mission was to end the Skyrim rebellion by any means necessary.  I accompanied him to Skyrim to assist, as my first field assignment.

    Things were going quite smoothly.  After gaining Ulfric’s confidence, and at an opportune moment, Ty presented Ulfric a map showing, supposedly, the location of the jagged crown.   Ulfric jumped at the chance to gain the artifact, and with just a small force, including my mentor and myself, proceeded to a locale just south of Helgen, leading Ulfric right into an Imperial ambush.

    A small skirmish followed, but seeing the hopelessness of the situation, Ulfric quickly surrender.  Unfortunately, master Ty was killed in the skirmish.  To make matters worse, Major Jillian, our Imperial contact, had also been killed.  There was no one to ‘rescue’ me, to separate me, from the traitors.

    So, now I am on my way to the chopping block to be executed along with Ulfric and his men.  But my life is a small price to pay for the Empire.  Long live the Empire!  Long live the Emperor!



    You have unswerving loyalty to the Empire.  You are an agent of the Emperor.  No one outside of the organization knows of the group’s existence (else the Thalmor might start assassinating the membership).   They are not ‘Blades’, nor are meant to replace them; but rather supplement them, should that group ever be re-established.  They do not sneak around to hide their presence, but rather hide in plain sight, blending in, as best they can, as citizens of various types – perhaps a ‘treasure hunter’ or an ‘adventurer’ at the most.  Optimally, you wear no armor, and carry no weapons – you cannot always depend on always having your ‘gear’ with you.  Besides, you aren’t meant to look ‘threatening’; and having an opponent underestimate you, is to your advantage.  Your spells provide both armor (alteration) and weapons (conjuration) – and perhaps,  sometimes an ally.  In combat you are a trained swordsman, first and foremost, a melee fighter – your spells are used, nearly exclusively, to enhance your combat effectiveness.  You will enchant your apparel, but don’t rely on such trappings, you never know when you might find yourself disrobed and unarmed.


    Skills and Perks (level 25):

    Major Skills:

    One-handed (blades):  Your primary offense.

    • Armsman 4/5
    • Bladesman 1/3 
    • Fighting Stance 
    • Critical Charge 


    Alteration: Your primary defense. Keeping the various 'armor'-like spells active is essential to your survival.

    • Novice-Apprentice Casting
    • Adept Casting
    • Dual-casting
    • Magic Resistance 1/3
    • Mage Armor 2/3. 


    Conjuration:  This school is used to used to summon weapons and possibly allies.

    • Novice-Apprentice Casting
    • Mystic Binding (essential)
    • Soul Stealer
    • Oblivion binding (optional)


    Enchanting:  Our only crafting skill.  

    • Enchant 4/5
    • Insightful Enchanter 


    Minor Skills (little to no perks for these):

    Speech.   A role-playing skill that fits this build.  Any perks we get here are just for rp. I actually put a couple here in my play-through, but opted to put them into more ‘useful’ skills for this publish.

    Marksman.  Your secondary weapon. Perhaps place some perks here after 25, if you wish.

    Block (w/shield).  Purely optional.   Equipping a shield does NOT interfere with the mage armor perk.  If you opt for this; I recommend ‘Spellbreaker’.

    Restoration.  We will essentially only be casting 'quick heal', 'healing', and perhaps 'heal other' spells.

    Alchemy.  Magicka potions that you make (or find) will be useful.  Healing potions are a good choice too.  Other than the magicka and healing potions, I wouldn’t spend too much time here.



    Standing Stone:  Atronach goes well with the Breton racial power  (since our spells are fire and forget, the slowed magicka regeneration is a mino incovenience.)  Optionally the Lord stone will suffice, especially if you rely on conjuring allies.

    Race: I used Breton for my play-through due to their racial power.  Any should work.

    Magicka/Health/Stamina:   50% / 50% / 0%  (see below)

    Place points into magicka and health equally until 10th level.  After that, place all into health.  Including the atronach standing stone, this will give you 200 magicka.  If you opted for the Lord stone, continue this distribution to 20th level, so you have the 200 magicka.  Supplement this with an enchanted item or two. I found this enough to cast my necessary spells.  If you find yourself desiring more magicka, then continue the equal spread of magicka/health, as you desire.  It is not necessary to add any points to stamina, your weapons are 'light weight', so you do not tire as quickly during power attacks.  Also you aren’t wearing armor, so you can run farther without tiring.  Plus your lack of weapons and armor allows you to carry more ‘loot’.  If needed, some foods such as vegetable soup, will maintain your stamina in combat, but I found it wasn't necessary.  Besides, speed is your friend, and too many power attacks just slow you down.



    This is the equipment I had at 25th level.  I made no effort to create the 'best' gear, but rather created items that I wanted.  If you are having trouble with spell casters, you may want to swap out the 'Ring of Magicka' for one granting resistance.

    After selecting her route to her next assignment, the agent prepares her equipment.


    Fine Clothes of Summoning:  Conjuration spells at 19% less.

    Fine Warrior Boots:  One-handed attacks do 31% more damage (yes it works with bound weapons)

    Melee Gloves:  One-handed attacks do 31% more damage.

    Ring of Magicka:  30 points of magicka

    Magicka Gold Jewel Necklace:  34 points of magicka

    Diadem of the Savant (game item):  All spells cost less magicka to cast.



    Mock Charge:   Works best against two-handed weapon fighters.   Use your greater mobility to avoid your opponent’s melee attacks.  Entice your opponent to attack by closing, but stop short as they prepare to power attack; quickly backpedal while moving to one side, causing them to miss.   Follow this up by a power attack and a couple of quick strikes (summoned blades are fast).

    Charge Through:   Use when opponents are in a line, coming towards you.  Begin by using the ‘Unrelenting Force’ Shout.  The stagger effect is enough.  While your opponents are staggered, charge (sprint) your first opponent with a power attack; this attack will carry you through to the next opponent.  Power attack your second opponent as well.  Follow this with some quick strikes.  Critical Charge perk enhances this maneuver.

    Flanking:  ‘Slow time' Shout.   Next close on your opponent, flank, and move behind them; attacking with quick strikes all the while.

    Chaos Conjuration:  Use when magicka is a bit low and you have chosen the atronach stone.  Use your remaining magicka to conjure an ally (atronach or familiar).  One of two things will happen:  Either, the spell will succeed, you will gain a little magicka back, and you will have an ally.  Or, more likely, the spell will fail, you will absorb back the magicka used to cast the spell, plus a little more.  Low magicka can quickly be regained with a few quick 'summon familiar' spells.   I usually gain enough to be able to cast 'quick heal', if necessary, without having to resort to 'restore magicka' potions.  (This is due to a glitch where your 'absorb magicka' ability may disrupt your own summon 'creature' spells but not animate dead spells.  I learned of this, the 'hard way', but decided it could still be of some benefit.  If you do not like this uncertainty, then change your stone to the Lord stone)

    Boost Defense:  (Requires a shield)  Use when you have cast all the spells you wish or you are low in magicka.  Equip a shield, your defense will increase by the shield's rating without intefering with your mage armor protection.  Equip the shield 'Spellbreaker' for additional magic protection, as well (50 point ward).

    Whirlwind Sprint:  Works best against mages, ice mages in particular (especially if you’re ‘slowed’). 

    Dragonskin:  (if Breton).  To boost your magic absorption, use this racial power when confronted by mages, and other spell casters.

    Remember to always have your armor spell active.


    Play through Ideas and Tips:

    Disenchant most items that you find, but do not disenchant 'the novice hood' that provides magicka that you should’ve acquired in the Helgen dungeons.  You will need this to cast ‘conjure bow’ –  since you may get this spell very early.  This hood, along with the Atronach stone, will be enough magicka for a low level character to cast the spell.  Later, after gaining some magicka, and some echanting ability,we'll disenchant the hood.  Also we will get the Black Star early to help boost this skill, and enchant our apparel.

    Initially, wear the best armor you can find, and keep a sword and bow handy – a shield is optional.  These are only a temporary nuisance, you will abandon these as soon as you have the mage armor perk.  Keep the shield if you wish.

    As soon as you arrive at the Whiterun stables, take the coach to Riften.  From there, head in a northerly direction to the Atronach stone.  After getting the Atronach stone , proceed west-north-west to Fort Amol** Spoiler ** There, in a bucket in the main room you will find the conjure bow spell **End Spoiler**.  I used the bow fairly infrequently, but it is nice to have a missile weapon on occasion.

    Early in your playthrough, head to Azura’s shrine.  Finish that quest acquiring the ‘Black Star’.   You will need these black (grand) souls to enchant your gear.

    The Temple of Mara quest is a nice option if you want to increase your magic resistance (should your magic absorbtion fail).

    Acquire Spellbreaker, if you use a shield (increases magicka absorbtion).

    Around 20th level, join the Imperial side of the rebellion (civil war).   Optionally, join the Stormcloaks (you re an agent afterall), find out their plans, obtain the jagged crown, but deliver it to the Imperials instead.  This act will place you on the Imperial side of the war and an enemy of the Stormcloaks. Continue the Civil War questline and end the war in Skyrim.  When engaging large groups of the enemy during this questline try not to isolate yourself from your allies, else you may get overwhelmed by sheer numbers.   Unrelenting Force, Become Ethereal, or Whirlwind Sprint shouts may prove useful then.


    Hope you enjoy it.






  • June 12, 2012

    Excellent backstory Rune, congratulations on your 1st build!!

    So we have a very neat little merging here...

    Playstyle would be like an Alik'r but with the huge threat of conjured minions and the bound bow/sword (Arcane Bladesman). I'm guessing thats why restoration becomes a minor skill. Then of course we have that wonderful mix of Atronach Stone and Breton blood, always a lethal combination.

    The beauty of unarmored builds like this is being able to mix up outfits throughout the game to keep things feeling fresh! I happened to notice earlier that the mourners outfit on a female looks really good!

    Only thing i think needs a little work is your page layout, its a bit jumbled up, just my opinion.

    Definite like from me!

  • June 12, 2012

    Thanks for the response, and criticism.   I will work on the layout a bit later this week; my build is not as 'pretty' as some of the high end builds.

  • June 12, 2012

    Rune Red, first of all, it is exciting to see one of your builds, as you have been a faithful and thoughtful contributor of this group for a very long time!

    I appreciate the thought put into this build, as all the skills are quite suitable for an agent that needs to ready for anything.  I particularly enjoy the challenge of playing unarmored builds, and the reasoning behind why the agent is unarmored is brilliant...I recently finished a character's play through who wore normal clothes purposely to not attract attention--as an Altmer he felt it smarter to keep a low profile in Skyrim. 

    Conjured weapons are also a lot of fun to play with, and suit this well!  I really love all of the role play possibilities with this one.  I have been struggling finding the "right" character to take through the Imperial legion questline, and this one is perfectly built for it!  Thanks for putting this up!

  • June 12, 2012

    Thanks Kynareth.

    I think that I should mention, if you use the Atronach stone and cast a 'summon' creature type spell, the spell may fail.  Fortunately, if it does, then you will not only recover the magicka for the spell, but a little more also.  You can use this fact to your advantage (life gives you lemons, make lemonade).  I will add notes about this to the build, when I 'polish' my page later this week.

  • Member
    June 14, 2012

    I will have to try this mod. I have tried playing with builds with just ragged trousers and it was very tough. The tactics in this build are very interesting. I will have to try this out.

  • June 14, 2012

    Running around with just pants without the 'mage armor' perk would be difficult.  Just keep in mind that you cannot wear any armor to benefit from the perk.  A few items however, are exceptions, such as the Diadem of the Savant which provides a few points of light armor but does not intefere with mage armor.  Shields do not hinder the perk either.

  • Member
    July 18, 2012

    Awesome build! Thanks again for some inspiration and skill breakdown, really helped me.

  • July 20, 2012

    Thanks for the compliment - and I'm glad it helped you with your build.  For those interested, this is Henson's build, the Psijic Order Monk.

  • October 21, 2012
    This sounds awesome, it makes me want to use bound weapons. +1 :)