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Character Build: The Father of The Hunt

Tags: #Character Build Archer  #Character Build Barbarian  #Character Build Scout  #Rank:Recognized 
  • April 4, 2016

    "And what would you ask of me, my hunter?"
    "Lord Hircine, I beg of you a boon - Give me life, that I may paint the world red with your gift."
    "Your boon is granted."

    No matter where you are in Tamriel, the Blood Moon is regarded as a sign of misfortune. Under the red gaze, it seems that the line between beast and man is blurred, and the fabric of reality is stretched thin.
    But, there is one one who dares to hunt under the blood moons of Tamriel - An ancient Khajiit, older than time itself.
    It is rumoured he was the first to bend a bow in the name of Hircine, and was gifted with immortality and supernatural powers for his allegiance.
    As per Hircine's bidding, The Father has come to Skyrim, seeking two things: A longbow of legend with the power to bring forth the Blood Moon, and a prey to grant him his final challenge.

    Tonight, The Father of the Hunt stalks a new kind of prey.
    Let the Blood Moon Rise once more, and let man and beast alike fall...

    Race: Khajiit. Alternatively, you can pick Wood Elf if you like.
    Appearance: Make your character look old and blind.
    Stone: The Lord, The Serpent, The Shadow. Take your pick.
    Magicka/Health/Stamina: 1/2/3 respectively.
    Major Skills: Archery, Sneak, Two-Handed
    Minor Skills: Smithing, Light Armour, Block
    Questlines: Ill Met by Moonlight, Main Story, Dark Brotherhood, Dawnguard(Dawnguard Side), No One Escapes Cidnha Mine, Lost to the Ages, Companions Questline
    Shouts of importance: Aura Whisper, Elemental Fury, Throw Voice, Slow Time, Become Ethereal
    Gear: Savior's Hide, Predator's Grace, Gauntlets of the Old Gods

    The Father of the Hunt, simplified to The Father forthwith, is a build meant to test the player's skills as a swordsman, and more so as an archer. Plenty of builds turn you into a walking overlord - But the man we're playing is no overlord. The Father is a multiple-eras-old wanderer, with extremely poor eyesight and a lifelong allegiance to Hircine. Did I mention he's almost entirely blind?
    We've all heard the story before: A blind old man who can fight better than anyone. Well, that's the premise of this build. The fact of the matter is, the bandits and other prey we fight on a day-to-day basis in skyrim just don't hold up enough challenge, even on Legendary at this point. To challenge ourselves, we need to delve deeper.
    In order to play this build properly, you're going to need to turn all the "Actor/Item/etc Fade" sliders in the "display" menu down to their minimum, along with your brightness.
    "But DeGroot, what on earth does this do?"
    Basically, what this will do is reduce your draw distance to the bare minimum. According to Wikipedia, Draw Distance is defined as "the maximum distance of objects in a three-dimensional scene that are drawn by the rendering engine." So in other words, if your draw distance is very low, objects won't appear until you're within a few yards of them.

    Pictured: The difference between low draw distance(Left) and default draw distance(Right)

    Now, this does not actually make you completely blind - You'll still see (Or sense) a lot of things on general rule - Mountains, houses, gates, castles. However, there is a greater problem requiring your attention: Suddenly you're in a bind because your main form of combat is long-distance and you can barely see a damn thing. Sound hard?
    Kinda is, to tell the truth. Your archery skills are going to be put to the test in this build - Let's see if you pass...or fail.

    The Father's time in Akavir

    Now, with these display settings tweaked to our liking, comes the next important part of this build: Playing like the Father of the Hunt would. A good hunter learns to adapt to his prey, and you fine ladies and gentlemen are more than just "good hunters".
    That being said, this is by no means an easy build. The Huntsmaster relies on knowing your foe and your battleground like the back of your hand; After all, how many times have you gone through Bleak Falls Barrow or Mzinchaleft or even Skuldafn?
    To facilitate this, there are three types of combat in this playstyle. Ranked from hardest to easiest, they are Close and Personal, Ranged and Stalking.

    Close and Personal is just what it sounds: Engaging the enemy where you stand. While this combat style is useful, it is not advised for most situations due to your low armour rating, and should be used fleetingly. Make careful use of your blocks and shouts to turn the tide in your favor, using things like the Silent Roll perk and the first word of Whirlwind Shout to make yourself a difficult target.

    Ranged Combat centers around the usage of your bow of choice to put as many holes in your foes as possible before they come close. Careful use of your shouts is encouraged to maintain the distance between you and your foes.

    Stalking is the Hunter's main form of combat - Fighting the enemy in their own territory, from the shadows and amongst the trees. Misdirection is the important factor here, as it will allow you to maintain a low profile while silently picking off enemies. Constant movement is key to this playstyle, as well as the use of Aura Whisper.

    Pictured: Most of your gear, barring whatever arrows you use and Zephyr.

    The Father is a pretty diverse build, as the gameplay shows. However, the use of Elemental fury significantly limits our spectrum of weapons, so we have to stick to non-enchanted weapons(Except for bows, of course).


    Armour is fairly standard: It's all relatively easy to obtain, and you hold onto it for all of your playthrough. Not much else to say, really.

    Chest - The Savior's Hide

    With the significant resistance to poison you'll want to pick this up as soon as you leave Helgen. Accordingly you CAN kill Sinding immediately after receiving the Cursed Ring of Hircine and obtain it that way, but I haven't tested it.

    Gauntlets: The Gauntlets of the Old Gods

    Tribal-looking, benefits Archery and look great with the Savior's Hide. Don't miss them, even if you have to let a bunch of madmen escape prison. Morals were always for sissies anyway.

    Boots: Predator's Grace

    With a name like Predator's Grace, there's no way we were gonna pass these up. Muffle makes for a great stealth addition as well as the slight addition to stamina regen being...Kinda useless, I'll admit. But hey, muffle! 'sgreat!


    Anyone who's done an archery-centric build know that there's about 80 gorillion bows and 90% of them are useful to your character in some way, shape or form. Limiting oneself to one can be a chore, so here are three of my own choices!


    My pick for most effective. Fast draw speeds, and decent damage. Combine that with Quick Draw, and you're slinging arrows faster than you can kill people with!

    Glass Bow of the Stag Prince

    My other personal pick, albeit for looking pretty. Does a bit more damage than Zephyr, has a connection with its owner(you), and has a good enchantment for roleplay, hindered by the fact you have to kill 20 animals to get a miniscule boost. But it looks pretty, and that's all that matters. Right?

    Auriel's Bow

    I...Personally don't really like Auriel's Bow. While its DPS is higher than both The Glass Bow of the Stag Prince and Zephyr, but requires recharging, and sun damage doesn't really have any correlation with The Father. Its only real use is to cause Blood Moons, which have a purpose, albeit morbid, in our build(See Roleplay for further details).

    Two-Handed Weapons
    This build allows for personal flexibility when it comes to two-handed weapons. Be it battleaxe, greatsword or warhammer, it's your choice in the end for what to use.

    Unenchanted greatsword of choice

    While it doesn't matter too dearly on the two-hander you use, I personally stuck with greatswords. Your end goal will, of course, be the Dragonbone Greatsword due to its overall awesomeness and handcrafted shtick.

    The Longhammer

    Light? Check. Decent damage? Check. Fast? Check. Effected by Elemental Fury? Check-a-roonie.
    The Longhammer and this build were made from each other. Best use it.

    The Father is basically a homeless old hunter with crazy-sharp senses. If you're looking for a comparison, think of him like The End from Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater mixed with Mortal Kombat's Kenshi.
    Being a hunter means an important roleplay factor: Living off the land. Make your armour from the skins of animals, fletch your arrows with ores from the ground and firewood from the trees. You're going to need a bow, however - Don't feel bad if you have to take your starting weapons from your first few enemies. Speaking of which: Crossbows require no skill to an ancient archer such as The Father. Forget them. Not worth selling, which is why we won't. Despite the large amounts of carry space you'll have, you will find little use for gold and the items you buy with it - which suits our playstyle just fine. Almost every single trader in skyrim is of Man, and the Father has a well-deserved enmity for smoothskins. Trading with Khajiit caravans is fine, for those rare times you actually have something to trade.
    This also resonates well with the homeless part of The Father's moniker - what few possessions you have will stay on you for your entire playthrough. Houses are useless to a man like the Father, so steer clear. PC players, this build resonates well with many of the boss characters introduced by Lagrie's mods, so feel free to take a look at those if you haven't already. After all, there's nothing more satisfying than bringing down difficult prey.
    Followers are another no-go: Hunters working together is a recipie for disaster, especially if the Blood Moon rises...

    The Blood Moon is what happens when you let yourself go a little too far. There will come times where there is no other alternative, or a city must fall. And with the blood moon, comes the wrath of the werewolf. Take a Bloodcursed Elven Arrow, shoot it into the sun with Auriel's Bow, begin a bloodbath. During this time, no heart must be left beating. Bandits, animals, innocent civilians...There is no stopping what happens under the blood moon.
    The Blood Moon, roleplay-wise, should be used as a signal that a great battle is at hand. While becoming a Werewolf is not necessary, it is the only time your werewolf form is available to you.


    Maintain low detection while in stealth
    Difficulty: Very Easy
    Requires: Arrows
    Fire a shot in the direction you want your foe to investigate, then reposition.

    Close-range attack that sends the enemy skyward
    Difficulty: Hard
    Requires: Third word of Unrelenting Force, Steady Hand perk(or just plain fast reflexes)
    While crouching, use Unrelenting Force on an enemy directly in front of you at the highest angle possible. During the arc, land as many arrows on target as possible.


    I wish to thank Chris Diokino and Relycs for the support and fine-tuning during the making of this build, as well as ShinJin for creating the kick-ass name.
    More importantly, thank you, the reader, for taking the time out of your day to read my guide. As always, if you feel I have room to improve, drop a comment.

  • Member
    April 4, 2016

    Great build! You deserve a +1. I love the concept and especially the roleplay. Using the werewolf form only during the blood moon limits the power nicely through an interesting roleplay element.

  • Member
    April 4, 2016

    Holy crap dude, this came out so freaking well. I´m glad I could pitch in to make this build....shine!

  • Member
    April 4, 2016

    One of the best builds I've seen in a while, nice job. +1

  • April 4, 2016
    I have been waiting for something so godly being bestowed upon a Khajiit character.
  • April 4, 2016
    It's a good build. Definitely deserves a like. One thing I want to point out is that steady hands will not work with slow time. A viable alternative would be to combine steady hands with the ranger perk. You'll move significantly faster than your enemies while aiming your bow.
  • Member
    April 4, 2016

    Indeed.  What he said. The presentation here is unbelievably Mythic!

  • April 4, 2016
    Nice bro defiently gonna have to play this next
  • Member
    April 4, 2016

    Wow! This came out more quickly than I expected! :D

    You've got a great set of skills here, and a compelling reason to use them in your Roleplay. I especially like your tweaking of the draw distance as a way to bring blindness into the build (plus it kind of reminds me of when I first started playing Oblivion, and my computer would only function on the lowest settings, so people would just kind of pop up out of nowhere xD). I'm also liking the limits you impose on the werewolf form via The Bloodmoon... good call with that.

    And of course... LONGHAMMER!!!!!!! (love dat hammer ;D)

    I've been playing this game for a long time, and I've never thought to directly manipulate  Unrelenting Force (other than off cliffs, of course), so I'm definitely going to have to give your Uppercut move a try--it sounds awesome... and hilarious xD

    This turned out great; congrats on an awesome build! :D

  • April 4, 2016
    Welp, can't play this. Skyrim got stolen.