Skyrim Character Building » Discussions

Character Build: Ysgramor Incarnate

Tags: #Race:Nord  #Character Build Juggernaut  #Character Build Warrior  #Character Build Healer  #Rank:Exemplar  #Wuuthrad  #Ysgramor 
  • July 10, 2012

    The Story So Far...

    You open your eyes and stretch your arms and legs, as you wake up to another fine day in the beautiful afterlife of Sovngarde. You’ve been enjoying the feasts and fellowship that come with the Hall of Valor for thousands of years, but each day still feels as great as the first. But on this day in particular, things are different. You discover that Shor has personally asked to see you. Confused, but excited, you quickly make your way to his shrine. After saying a short prayer, Shor appears before you, shrouded in a blinding white light. Getting straight to business, he tells you of many grave new threats plaguing the land of Skyrim. From the Thalmor’s presence, to the return of the dragons, the Nords need a hero more than ever. And in their hour of need, Shor would give them one from their greatest legends: You, Ysgramor, leader of the original Five Hundred Companions, and conqueror of the land of Skyrim.

    Immediately, the adrenaline that comes with battle begins to pump through your veins. But, it is not without a catch. You must return to Tamriel in an entirely new form. You must once again hone your skills from the ground up, and earn the respect you once had with either your words or your steel. Only then can you save Skyrim – and all of Nirn. You gladly accept the call to once again join your kinfolk on the fields of war. After saying farewell to your brothers and sisters in Sovngarde, you speak to Tsun, who sends you back to the realm of the mortals with a single mighty shout...



    This is my first build for the group, so I hope you all enjoy it! Most of my builds are born through me trying out a playstyle I haven’t before. Having never used Two-Handed much, I began to brainstorm and Ysgramor Incarnate was born. I know that an Ysgramor build has already been done, but I tried to give this one a few slightly different twists – Restoration magic and Dragon Shouts. (Note that having the Dawnguard DLC will be a big help in this particular area.)


    You may be thinking “Huh? Ysgramor didn’t use Restoration magic! Or any magic for that matter! This is blasphemy!” Well I thought the same thing up until a few short days ago. (MAIN QUEST SPOILERS FOLLOW) But someone brought to my attention a line of dialogue spoken by Tsun before challenging him to cross the Whale Bone Bridge in Sovngarde.  If the player chooses the option “By right of cleverness; I am Master of the College of Winterhold.”, Tsun will reply with “Well met, mage of Skyrim. The Nords may have forgotten their forefathers' respect for the Clever Craft, but your comrades throng this hall. Here in Shor's house we honor it still." This one line leads me to believe that an ancient Nord such as Ysgramor may actually have been a user of magic, and if he wasn’t, then he certainly wasn’t opposed to the idea. So with this in mind, please enjoy the build. :D



    Ysgramor would defy an an army to liberate the people of Skyrim - and come out unscathed.


    The Build

    Race: Nord, of course!

    Standing Stone: Early on, you may want to pick up the Lover’s Stone. Then, depending on your preferred playstyle, you can choose either the Lord or Atronach.

    Major Skills: Two-Handed - Ysgramor uses his legendary Battleaxe, Wuuthrad, to decimate his foes. However, its blade is dulled and old, and may not last him forever…

    Heavy Armor - Ysgramor, like many great warriors, prefers the added protection of Heavy Armor to the extra mobility of Light Armor. His armor of choice is the Ancient Nord Armor, like the set he would have worn in his life.

    Restoration - This is the element that I believe makes this build a bit more unique than others. According to Tsun, the ancient Nords had a deep respect for magic and magic users. Ysgramor relied on his steel on most occasions, but even he used magic. Restoration will help both Ysgramor and his allies greatly in the heat of battle.


    Minor Skills: Smithing - Wuuthrad may serve you well for a time, but it is an ancient weapon. Ysgramor should learn the ways of the forge to create a weapon that rivals the strength of his legendary axe.

    Enchanting - Ysgramor may wish to enchant his armor, to further increase the death dealing abilities of his weapons. He’ll need all the strength he can get to defend Skyrim in these dark days.

    Speech - Ysgramor was a hero of Skyrim, and the citizens would be wise to remember that. Through the use of a silver tongue, he can regain the respect he deserves.

    Archery - Although he was known for his abilities in close quarters combat, Ysgramor still knew his way around a bow. He can use it to pick off those enemies that just refuse to get in range of his blade.


    Dragon Shouts: Here is another aspect that may set this build apart from the other Ysgramor build we have. This Ysgramor, always searching for further glory, embraces his destiny as the Dragonborn. As such you will use shouts a great deal while playing, namely Elemental Fury. Other useful shouts are Disarm, Unrelenting Force, and Call of Valor. But, as with the rest of the build, you can use whatever fits you best.


    Equipment: There are a few options for equipment here, and choosing a set of gear really depends on how heavily you want to roleplay the build. I’ll give two options below to let you choose from, based on your roleplaying preferences.

    Heavy roleplay gear - If you, like me, try to focus more on the roleplaying aspects of a build rather than its power, this may be the route you choose to take. Obviously, your weapon of choice will be Wuuthrad. However, there may be one small issue - Wuuthrad cannot be improved at a grindstone, leaving it… underwhelming at higher levels. Fear not, though! I forged a Gold Sapphire ring, enchanted it with fortify Two-Handed, and dubbed it the Ring of Wuuthrad. If you couple this with a set of gauntlets enchanted with fortify Two-Handed, you can greatly improve Wuuthrad’s abilities, reducing or even nullifying the aforementioned disadvantage. To further roleplay, you’ll want to either find or forge a set of Ancient Nord Armor. Fitting for, well, an ancient Nord! But, instead of using a typical Ancient Nord helm, you’re going to find a special one; the Helm of Yngol, found in Yngol’s barrow. For those of you who don’t know, Yngol was one of Ysgramor’s two sons, and he journeyed back to Skyrim with his brother and father along with the original Five Hundred Companions. Aesthetically, the Helm of Yngol looks similar to a Draugr Deathlord’s helmet. So pretty cool! An Amulet of Talos is also recommended, to allow you to use Elemental Fury, or any of your shouts really, more often.


    Lighter roleplay gear - As awesome as Wuuthrad is, the fact that it can’t be improved may leave some players wanting more. If you’re such a player, then either an Ebony or Nord Hero battle axe will work nicely for a vicious weapon. Ancient Nord or Wolf Armor is the preferred choice of armor. However, if you have the Dawnguard DLC, then I suggest using Dragonbone weapons and armor for both strength and aesthetic appeal. Enchant your armor however you please, but your Ring of Wuuthrad (a Gold Sapphire ring enchanted with fortify Two-Handed) can go a long way towards increasing your damage output. You should not enchant your axe, however. Doing so would not allow you to use the Elemental Fury shout, which would greatly decrease your DPS. And since we’re on the topic of shouts, an Amulet of Talos should be worn to lower the cooldown time between your Elemental Fury uses.


    I’m going to exclude any perk choices as of now. It really all boils down to how you prefer to play the game, I don’t feel right dictating how another player acts. Go with whatever feels right, but stay within the above mentioned skills.


    It's not the most brutal thing he's done to a foe...



    Your main source of damage will be your axe, whichever that may be. Before charging in to battle, be sure to use Elemental Fury to increase your damage per second; it makes a noticeable difference! If you begin to get overwhelmed by enemies, an Unrelenting Force or Disarm shout can turn the tides in your favor. As a Restoration user, your primary source of healing will be magic rather than potions. So if the need arises, don’t be afraid to use a Fast Heal or Close Wounds spell on yourself, or Healing Hands on your allies. When fighting against an undead enemy, spells like Vampire’s Bane and Stendarr’s Aura can go a long way. If you run into dragon that just refuses to land, pull out your bow and shoot it out of the sky!


    Faction Choices: The Companions – Obviously, Ysgramor would be eager to return to the place where he first settled Skyrim. However, when he arrives he’ll discover that things among the Companions are not as he left them. He’ll take it upon himself to return the Companions to their former glory. (Essential for obtaining Wuuthrad, and the ability to craft Ancient Nord Armor.)

    The Stormcloak Rebellion – Ysgramor will quickly find out that the Nords’ way of life is being threatened; by the elves no less! He can’t allow all that he worked for in life to be erased by the actions of milk-drinking cowards. Join Ulfric’s rebellion, and help Skyrim regain Her freedom.

    The College of Winterhold – Today’s Nords may not recognize the importance of magic, but Ysgramor has not forgotten. Perhaps by seeing such a legendary hero of theirs practicing the arcane arts, their own views may be swayed.

    The Greybeards – The Nords have always had a deep respect for the Greybeards. By genetics, Ysgramor is no different. He’ll choose to side with them over nearly all other group in Skyrim. Without their help, the dragon threat may never be eliminated.


    Special Moves: Possibly upcoming. I understand there have been some discrepancies concerning special moves lately, and I don’t want them to draw attention away from the rest of the build. If things get sorted out, however, expect to see some.


    Roleplay Aspects 

    Roleplaying as Ysgramor is what makes the build most enjoyable, in my opinion. Besides the basic roleplaying "rules", here are a few other things to help spice up your roleplaying experience:


    Hitting the Books - This one makes sense for a few reasons. It's been hundreds of years since Ysgramor has seen Skyrim. Things have changed greatly. Reading often will allow him to get somewhat caught up with the events leading up to and during the return of the dragons.

    Respect the Dead - When adventuring through Nordic ruins and the like, be sure not to loot froom any burial urns or undisturbed dead. These are your brothers and sisters, and should be treated as such; even in death. Draugr that attack you first, however, are fair game! (Thanks to Vix for this idea!)

    Heavy Drinker - Whenever you get the chance, sit down and enjoy a bottle of mead or two... or three.

    Victory or Sovngarde! - Never back down from a fight. You would rather the cold embrace of death take its hold over you than be labeled as a milk-drinker by your peers.

    Nord Master Race - Skyrim belongs to the Nords! Refuse to assist any and all elves you come across, unless absolutely necessary. And even then, you don't have to like it.



    Well, everyone there you have it! This is still a work in progress, as I’m still playing as Ysgramor at the time of writing. But things are going excellently so far, and I’m truly enjoying it! As I stated earlier, this is just my first build. I don't expect it to be perfect, nor do I expect it to receive too much attention. As has been said before, it's becoming more difficult to come up with new concepts. But I’m eager to hear any and all suggestions that you have for me, to better myself and my builds in the future. Thank you all in advance! Now, go out and return Skyrim to glory!





  • July 10, 2012

    Amazing first build.    Well thought out and organized.  I like the role-play focus, it was re-freshing.


  • July 10, 2012

    Thank you very much!  I appreciate it haha.

    The roleplaying is my favorite part of this build, so I'm glad you like it as well :)

  • July 11, 2012

    I really hate to bump my own thread, but I'd appreciate some more input. I feel like I can still improve upon the build with some help from you all!

  • Member
    July 11, 2012


    This is amazing, really. I like the heavy roleplay aspect (even though I usually play as an elf <.<)

    I think you should use battlecry as often as you can, I can just imagine the battle for whiterun/windhelm being led by some nord guy with wuuthrad using battlecry to frighten away all the little milk drinkers.

    *And there's no dawnbreaker*

    Most certainly a +1 from me, well done.

  • July 11, 2012

    Thank you! Yes, it's my first build haha. But I've been lurking here since November, looking at a lot of the builds. I learned from the best 

    Battlecry is always a lot of fun. Like you said, a big burly Nord warrior shouting in a puny mage's face is good for a laugh.

    Thanks for the like! Just two more until I reach Apprentice level.

  • Member
    May 10, 2017

    All images have been restored for this build. While I try my best to keep the formatting as close to the original as possible, there are some unavoidable differences as a result of differing platforms... for this I apologize.

    Also, please feel free to remove the 'Restored' banner at the end of the build--I put it there as a courtesy to let the reader know that the build has been worked on by somebody other than its original creator without his or her knowlege.