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Event Build: The Holy Vindicator

Tags: #Character Build Crusader  #Character Build Juggernaut  #Character Build Knight  #Race:Breton  #Rank:Event Exemplar  #Event:Teams 
  • Member
    October 7, 2015

    Hello everyone ! If you love D&D/Pathfinder builds you're in the right place, this build is our attempt to bring this prestige class from Pathfinder into Skyrim. This is a prestige class for paladins, clerics and warrior/clerics. While it shares some similarities with the usual paladin/cleric, it has some unique class features that open new gameplay and roleplay options. We, the Novice Difficulty Team are proud to present you :

    The Holy Vindicator

    "Many faiths have within their membership an order of the church militant. They are paragons of battle, eschewing sermons for steel. These men and women who put their lives and souls on the line for their faith are living conduits of divine power, down to their very blood, which they happily shed in a moment if it brings greater glory to their deity or judgment upon heretics, infidels, and all enemies of the faith."


    Before you keep reading the build is important to know and understand the glitches used by this build :

    The Potent Equilibrium Glitch : For a detailed explanation click here.

    The Unlimited Stamina Glitch : For a detailed explanation click here.

    The Advanced Falmer Helmet Glitch : As everyone knows is possible to wear this helmet and a circlet/dragon priest mask, the advanced version makes possible to wear this helmet plus another helmet. To perform the glitch equip the Falmer Helmet, equip a Dragon Priest Mask and then equip the Dawnguard Full Helmet.

    The Build

    Race : Breton. The 25% resistance to magic is good at every difficulty and it also saves an useful slot for enchanting. Dragonskin works really well with the Atroach Stone granting a minute of immunity to all forms of magical damage.

    Stone : Warrior/Lord ---> Atronach. The Lord Stone is listed for those who don't like to use the Warrior Stone for too much, the 25% resistance to magic and the extra 50 armor is helpful while the character is still at a low level. The Atronach Stone should be picked around level 20, the +50 Magicka lets us invest 50 more points into Health, the malus is negligible and the +50% spell absorption makes this character highly resistant to magic.

    Stats Distribution : 1 Magicka / 4 Health / 0 Stamina. Every five levels until the Magicka reaches 150, then put all your points into Health (you'll need it). We don't need a big Magicka pool (our stone and gear will help us with that) and we don't want to invest into Stamina (otherwise the Infinite Stamina Glitch won't work).

    Major Skills : Two Handed, Heavy Armor, Restoration, Enchanting

    Minor Skills : Block, Alteration, Illusion

    Main Spells : Close Wounds, Poison Rune, Stendarr's Aura, Vampire's Bane, Equilibrium

    Support Spells : Heal Other, Courage, Rally

    Shouts : Become Ethereal, Slow Time, Unrelenting Force

    Powers : Agent of Mara, Sailor's Repose, Force Without Effort, Companion's Insight, Dragonskin

    Blessing : Blessing of Arkay

    Potions : Potion/Draught/Philter/Elixir of the Healer

    Scrolls : Scroll of Bane of the Undead, Scroll of Guardian Circle, Scroll of Call to Arms

    "That's a way to break a mental control, and a neck..."

    Weapons and Armor

    "While a vindicator’s stigmata are bleeding, his blood runs down his weapon like sacred liquid energy."

    The Bloodskal Blade is the perfect weapon for this character, the glowing effect and the energy blast of this weapon represent the blood of the holy vindicator. Until you can obtain it use the best knightly looking greatsword that you can find (Steel/Silver/Dwarven/Elvish/Skyforge/Nord greatswords are good substitutes). The Dawnguard Full Helmet and the Steel Plate Gauntlets/Boots give to this set a strong paladinesque/knightly appereance while the Ebony Armor brings some elegance into the mix. The enchantments are focused on increasing the damage of our weapon (since we can't improve it with Smithing) and our health (we need it for both survivability and Blood Magic) one piece of this gear (usually the boots but other pieces are ok too) is used to enable the Infinite Stamina Glitch. Everything except the Ebony Armor can be obtained at a relatively low level (Vigilant Tolan always wears Steel Plate Gauntlets and Boots), the Steel Plate Armor (you can find one at Black-Briar Lodge) and the Dawnguard Heavy Armor are good replacements until you find an Ebony Armor.

    Enchantments :

    - Dawnguard Full Helmet + Falmer Helmet (Fortify Restoration + Fortify Magicka)

    - Gold Diamond Necklace (Fortify Two-Handed + Fortify Health)

    - Ebony Armor (Fortify Health + Resist Poison)

    - Steel Plate Gauntlets (Fortify Two-Handed + Fortify Block)

    - Gold Diamond Ring (Fortify Two-Handed + Fortify Health)

    - Steel Plate Boots (Fortify Two-Handed + Fortify Stamina)

    If for some reason you don't want/can't use the Advanced Falmer Helmet Glitch replace Resist Poison with Fortify Restoration and Fortify Block with Fortify Magicka.


    Level 50 Perk Placement

    Picture too small ? Click here.

    For a Level 20 Perk Spread click here.

    There's not much to say, all the skills are self-explanatory. Two Handed is your main offensive skill; Heavy ArmorBlock and Restoration increase your survival, Restoration is also used as a secondary offensive skill (thanks to the anti undead spells). Alteration is used mainly for Equilibrium and the magical resistance (and flesh spells are a good way to increase your armor rating while your Heavy Armor skill is low); Illusion is there only for the buff spells; Enchanting is the only crafting skill used.

    Special Moves

    Vindicator's Shield : Once per day the Holy Vindicator can channel positive energy directly into his armor becoming completely immune to all forms of magical damage. With this powerful move the Holy Vindicator can easily wreak havoc on evil mages and dragons priests.

    Requires : Atronach Stone + Dragonskin

    Faith Healing : Thanks to the power of his faith the Holy Vindicator creates a field of positive energy, quickly regenerating Health and Magicka. The undeads who enter this field flee while he stikes them with his spells.

    Requires : Elixir of the Healer (optional) + Scroll of Guardian Circle + Atronach Stone + Vampire's Bane

    Blessing of Fervor : With this blessing, the Holy Vindicator calls his allies to move forth and empowers them to conquer and become victorious.

    Requires : Scroll of Call to Arms + Rally + Courage

    Divine Judgement : The Holy Vindicator channels positive energy to harm the undeads, generating a powerful blast of sacred energy that sets undeads on fire and makes them flee.

    Requires : Elixir of the Healer (optional) + Stendarr's Aura + Scroll of Bane of the Undead + Slow Time

    Bloodrain : While his stigmata are bleeding, the vindicator's harmful channeled energy is accompanied by a burst of sacred liquid energy; the creatures that fail to resist his attack become sickened and start bleeding.

    Requires : Elixir of the Healer (optional) + Poison Rune (multiple times) + Equilibrium + Slow Time

    "The Holy Vindicator has substantial spellcasting ability, though not so much as a focused cleric or paladin. His combat skills are considerable and his healing powers prodigious, and those whose religious views align well with the vindicator will find a ready ally."


    Low Level Gameplay (Level 1 to 20)

    During the first levels the gameplay is pretty simple (since you have a small Magicka pool and a small spell list), cast a flesh spell pre combat and then hit things with your greatsword until they die (block/bash/heal when needed). Use your healing spells whenever possible and save the healing potions for critical situations. Thanks to the combination of heavy armor, healing spells and big Health pool this character is really sturdy; this means that even when playing on higher difficulties having a follower is not mandatory but surely helps. Against the undeads use your turn undead spells, since you won't have a lot of Magicka you probably won't be able to cast both the flesh spell and the tun undead spell but it's a good trade. Turn undead spells are great for levelling Restorations and since you're temporarily removing one enemy from combat you're taking less damage anyway. Speaking of Stamina management, 100 Stamina is fine for most fights; for the long ones eat a vegetable soup (this will temporarily mimic the effects of the Unlimited Stamina Glitch).

    High Level Gameplay (Level 20 to 50)

    Around level 20/25 you should have the Unlimited Stamina Glitch, Equilibrium and the Atronach Stone and after that you should obtain your weapons and your sun spells (and Poison Rune too). From this point on the gameplay changes. This should represent the passage from a base class (Paladin/Cleric) to a prestige class (Holy Vindicator). Opening combat with a flesh spell becomes optional and now your moves depends on what you're fighting against. Against warriors and other melee opponents; cast a Poison Rune on their path (unless they're immune to poison like the Dwemer automatons) and let them come to you, after that the gameplay remains pretty much the same (attack/block/bash/heal and repeat) but now you can use the terrain to your advantage to spam Bloodrain if you're facing a large group of enemies. Against archers and mages; dodge their attacks and sprint to close the distance (Become Ethereal and Slow Time can be helpful) then destroy them in melee, Vindicator's Shield is helpful againt big group of mages or against mage bosses (dragon priests, Ancano, Malkoran ecc...). Against undeads; cast Stendarr's Aura pre combat and use Vampire's Bane to reduce their HP, then finish them in melee. If they're undead archers/mages you can either sprint to close the distance or start a ranged fight using Vampire's Bane, Faith Healing will give you a huge advantage in this situation. If you're facing a large group of undeads both Faith Healing and Divine Judgement will help you to reduce their number. Regardless of what enemy you're facing Equilibrium is used during and after combat to regenerate you Magicka, so always check your Health (especially if you play on Master/Legendary); you can take hits while using Equilibrium but you don't want to go too low on health.


    As i already mentioned you can use followers, while this character doesn't need them to survive playing the support role is a nice alternative to the usual "hit it until it dies". So, if you want to play the support role just do it, you have all the tools you need to do so (Blessing of Fervor, Heal Other). Buff your follower, heal him and watch his back kiling those who otherwise would flank him. Melee followers are the best ones if you want to dedicate part of your time to playing the support role while ranged followers are the best choice if you don't want to focus too much on supporting them. If you want to use a follower i recommend to chose someone who shares your ideals and morals for roleplay purposes.

    "Give mercy to those who deserve it, smite all who do not !"

    Quests & Roleplay

    When role playing this character you should follow the usual paladin/good aligned character rules : don't steal, don't kill innocents, don't make deals with daedra and so on. But it all depends on how fanatical you want to be. This opens lots of role playng opportunities to personalize and evolve your character. Are you a noble hero who protects the innocents or you're willing to make deals with daedra if this means ensuring that their artifacts won't end in the wrong hands ? Is lying, stealing and killing something justifiable if it's in the name of a greater good ? Will you kill every evil creature on sight or will you spare and try to redeem them ?

    Blood magic is another importand roleplay argument. Does your character really have stigmata ? Are those a blessing or a self inflicted wound ? Is his control over the blood part of his holy powers or is he using real blood magic ? Generally (unless you want to change your roleplay) you shouls see his ability to control his blood as a consequence for his devotion to his deity (basically it's a power granted by a blessing instead of magic).

    Lastly, which deity do you serve ? Personally i decided to serve Arkay, his hatred for the undeads and his connection with life and death make him the perfect choice. This doesn't mean that you must serve him too, Stendarr and even Meridia are reasonable choices. Stendarr in particular seems the perfect choice for those who want to emphasize the fanatical side of this character because serving him opens some good backstory options with the Vigilants of Stendarr.

    Speaking of quests your top priority is obtaining Equilibrium so i highly recommend completing the College of Winterhold questline first, after that is done starting both the Dawnguard and the Dragonborn questlines is your next objective, you need them to unlock part of your equipment (remember to complete The Final Descent to get you weapon). The main questline is needed to unlock some shouts/abilities (all this questlines are also quite fitting for a hero/good character). Helping Meridia is also something that you maybe want to do; about the other daedric princes and the black books (as i explained before) that's up to you. You can either ignore or complete the Companions and the Civil War questlines. About the Compaions, either join them and stop before joining the circle or complete all the questline saving the soul of a warrior from the grasp of a daedric prince (remember to cure yourself too). For the civil war i recommend siding with the empire, you must defend law and order; destroying the Dark Brotherhood is another quest that you should do. While you complete this quests feel free to complete all the secondary quests that involve helping and protecting people (for exaple Ancestral Worship or March of the Dead).

    "Light guide my hand for you are my sword, my shield, my salvation."

    Closing Notes

    Full credit goes to Noodles and Parabola for discovering the Potent Equilibrium Glitch and the Unlimited Stamina Glitch. I want to thank Sinistas for the help that he gave me, sharing ideas, playtesting and watching how the first concept of this character evolved was a lot of fun.

  • Member
    October 8, 2015

    I feel like you should better explain how blood magic relates to the paladin theme of this build. I consider blood magic to be a dark art but I'm interested to know why a holy warrior would use it. Aside from this, I think it's all great, good job! 

  • Member
    October 8, 2015

    Thank you !

    You should see his control over his own blood as a result of a blessing. A deity blessed him for his devotion granting him the stigmata (a famous simbol for holy people ecc...) and with them the power to controll his blood at will. This means that this character is using a power similar to blood magic but that's not related to the dark arts.

    This is the main RP route and it's like this prestige class was intended in Pathfinder, you cold change that and RP a religious fanatic who use real blood magic to self inflict wounds and fuel his holy powers.

    Personally i tend to consider blood magic neutral as long as you use your own blood and evil when you start messing with vampirism/other people's blood.

  • Member
    October 8, 2015


  • Member
    October 9, 2015
    Kept meaning to get to this one and finally managed to do so. As a fan of Pathfinder who has read up on the Holy Vindicator I think you've captured the feel nicely. I do have a niggle regarding the perk spread being difficult to read at the bottom where the light stones are in the picture. You might consider putting a border around the text at those areas to make the text pop better.
  • Member
    October 10, 2015

    Thank you, we tried our best to "Skyrimize" this prestige class.

    About the perk spread, i know; the original version was bigger so reading wasn't a problem. Luckily there is a virtual version available, i'll probably redo the visual version once i get some free time again.

  • October 11, 2015
    Great Build Kappa! +1
  • Member
    October 11, 2015

    Thank you !

  • Member
    November 9, 2015

    I am unfamiliar with this particular character class, but it sounds absolutely BOSS ;D

    This is a great build, and the concept fits into Skyrim incredibly well. Love the skill selection and playstyle as well... great job on this one!

  • Member
    November 9, 2015

    This might get me to play either Pathfinder or Ponyfinder