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Event Build: The Drunken Boxer

Tags: #Character Build Illusionist  #Character Build Acrobat  #Character Build Unarmed  #Race:Khajiit  #SE Rank:Adept  #Event:Crossworlds3  #Tysoyaha 
  • December 12, 2017



    To me, the worst thing about unarmed combat in Skyrim has always been how clumsy it is. It makes sense to me that even a trained fighter would do less damage with his fists than with a sword. However, without a heavy weapon to worry about, you should be able to attack faster and dodge more easily. Landing several weaker blows while avoiding their stronger ones. Instead, even regular unarmed attacks are sluggish and there's only one power attack. The animation for the power attack just makes things worse...even when moving backwards or to the side you will always stop dead in your tracks and pause for a moment before taking a step forward and swinging your fist. You'll probably recognize that as the LAST thing you want to do if you're trying to side step an attack. This build does have your standard unarmed damage buffs just to keep it viable at later levels and higher difficulties, but not nearly to the excess of some builds. Our real focus will be developing the different combat forms that will add more strategy to unarmed gameplay.



    Ryutan is a Taloist Monk, taught not to worship Talos as a divine but to respect his wisdom as a mortal who achieved enlightenment and learned how to mantle the Aedra. You follow the teachings of Taloism and seek knowledge in all forms, from reading the texts of great scholars and meditating at the shrines of Talos, to acts of charity and selflessness that help to reveal the truth within ones self. You are a pacifist when possible, but as a combatant you practice the ancient art of Zui quan (醉拳), or Drunken Boxing.




    Race - Khajiit
    For obvious reasons.

    Standing Stone - The Lover Stone, The Lady Stone
    This build actually does a bit of crafting, so feel free to switch to the appropriate Guardian Stone before doing so.

    Magic/Health/Stamina - 1/1/1
    Strive to achieve balance within ones self, all stats working in harmony.

    Skills - Block, Heavy Armor, Enchanting, Restoration, Illusion, Alteration, Sneak, Alchemy
    It may seem like this build is spread a little thin, but Heavy Armor, Enchanting, and Alchemy kind of combine into a makeshift Unarmed tree.

    Abilities - Scholar's Insight, Sinderion's Serendipity
    Try to get Scholars Insight early since gaining wisdom through studying skill books isa large part of the roleplay.

    Blessings - Blessing of Talos, Voice of the Sky, The Gift of Charity
    These are all useful effects. You can easily manage without them, but if you follow the roleplay then they'll be active most of the time anyway, so you might as well utilize them.

    Shouts - Unrelenting Force, Clear Skies, Slow Time, Dragon Aspect
    The fun thing about this build is that all the shouts you'll be using only really need one word. Unrelenting Force (or Clear Skies if your outside) will be equipped most of the time to allow you to stagger opponents.

    Spells - Close Wounds, Stendarr's Aura, Muffle, Pacify, Dragonhide
    Calm Spells are as much a function of roleplay as they are gameplay. Choose your battles wisely and avoid violence when possible.

    Weapons - Iron Dagger (2), Staff of Paralysis

    One dagger should be tempered slightly so that they show up in two different items in your inventory when equipped.

    Armor - Bonemold->Dragonplate Gauntlets, Elven Shield
    You'll only equip your shield briefly to set up different forms so any shield will do...but the Elven Shield still looks the best even just for that short period of time.

    Clothing - Monk Robes (Hooded), Footwraps
    You can grab the Monk Robes at the Shrine of Talos massacre just west of Helgen Keep. Enchant your Footwraps with muffle when you get the chance.

    Jewellery - Amulet of Talos, Ring of Hircine, Fortify Unarmed Ring.
    Ring of Hircine is so that you can invoke the spirit of the wolf and change your fighting stance on command, you won't really be using beast form in combat.



    Taloist Herbology (Elves Ear+Canis Root) - Fortify Marksman Unarmed

    Tea of the Dragon Tongued (Mora Tapinella+ Dragon's Tongue) - Fortify Illusion




    Block - Shield Wall (5/5), Quick Reflexes, Block Runner, Shield Charge
    Quick Reflexes is a good priority to have. Shield Charge is a great addition but requires throwing away a few perks first so save it until you have some to spare.

    Heavy Armor - Fists of Steel
    As a Khajiit you'll have plenty unarmed damage at the beginning of the game. Just wearing heavy gauntlets will level Heavy Armor well enough that you'll be able to unlock Fists of Steel once you need it.

    Enchanting - Enchanter (5/5), Insightful Enchanter
    You won't need very powerful unarmed enchantments at first and Muffle isn't quantitative so you can put off leveling enchanting until you start feeling like your fists are becoming underpowered.

    Restoration - Adept Restoration, Respite, Recovery (1/2)
    Your basic healing spell will serve you quite well so you'll only need to perk up to Adept when/if you decide to add Stendarr's Aura to your bag of tricks.

    Illusion - Expert Illusion, Animage, Kindred Mage, Hypnotic Gaze
    Calm spells are a major part of the build. With no exp rearwarded from unarmed combat the peaceful solution, when possible, will actually benefit you more than fighting. How Zen.

    Alteration - Master Alteration, Stability
    This is for Mage Armor spells. Unfortunately, the heavy gauntlets limit our options perk-wise, but Stability is still very useful.

    Sneak - Stealth (5/5)
    Just want to be able to stay undetected, that's all. You don't even need all five levels if you're good at sneaking.

    Alchemy - Alchemist (5/5), Physician, Benefactor
    This will be for boosting your unarmed damage and illusion spells. The stronger your potions, the better.


    The Eight Immortal Forms:  

    Lü Dongbin (吕洞宾) - The leader of the 8 immortals, fights with a sword on his back that dispels evil spirits. He stumbles, sways and spins to disorient enemies.

    If you have two identical one-handed weapons and temper one, they will equip as two separate items. For some reason, this allows you use Beast Form to glitch your left hand into performing one handed animations When unarmed. Just equip both daggers, activate Beast Form and then wait an hour. When you revert to human form and raise your fist in third person, your left hand should be extend as if holding a cup of sake. Your moving power attacks with that hand are now spinning punches that aid in evasion.
    Requires: Tempered Iron Dagger (2), Beast Form


    Li Tieguai (李铁拐) - The cripple walks with a wooden cane. He feigns weakness and surprises enemies with lightning fast attacks.

    With a Staff if Paralysis in your right hand and a shield in your left, simply unequip the shield to remove the animation for your unarmed attacks, leaving them "blindingly" fast. You have to keep the staff equipped, so it will only work with the one hand, but the resulting attack speed will make up for that. You can't block either, but the staff will still stagger even paralysis immune enemies.
    Requires: Staff of Paralysis, Dagger


    Han Zhongli (汉钟离) - The strongest immortal, carries a large cauldron of wine. He tackles enemies with his strength, sending them flying through the air.

    If a shield is unequipped after Shield Charge is activated you will simply tackle your enemies with your shoulder. Releasing the sprint button will bring you immediately into Cao Guojiu form.
    Requires: Elven Shield, Shield Charge


    Lan Caihe (蓝采和) - The sexually ambiguous immortal carries a bamboo basket. Subtle feminine postures leave unsuspecting enemies vulnerable to devastating attacks.

    Unarmed attacks are not silent and will alert enemies. However, by using calm spells to quickly pacify multiple enemies from sneak you can keep them from overwhelming you even once you're detected. Attacking a target will cause them to become hostile, but not their allies. Allowing you to take on large groups one by one as the others watch peacefully from the sidelines.

    Requires: Muffle, Sneak, Pacify


    Zhang Guolao (张果老) - The old man rides a donkey. His attacks are as powerful as they are amusing.

    The whole point of unarmed combat is the great kill cams, right? There are much better strategies for multiple and/or stronger opponents...but once you're down to a single weakened foe then you'll need to switch to this form if you want to pull off a haymaker.
    Requires: Dual Unarmed, One Remaining Enemy


    Cao Guojiu (曹国舅) - The youngest immortal is a clever, controlled fighter. He focuses his chi and attacks the soft parts of the body, locking and breaking an enemy's joints.

    Using one word of Dragon Aspect gives you more damage and better damage resistance, mimicking the effects broken joints would have on enemies. Plus, the glowing fist thing just works so well with roleplay! Combine it with Stendarr's Aura and you'll be obliterating the undead.
    Requires: Dragon Aspect, Stendarr's Aura


    Han Xiangzi (韩湘子) - The musician plays a flute. He fights defensively, denying and then countering an enemy's attacks with powerful wrists.

    If you unequip a shield while blocking you'll be left with one fist clenched inside the other blocking with your wrists, almost as if you were holding a flute. Bashing in this form will be treated like a regular attack, doing unarmed damage and consuming stamina. Combine with Dragonhide for one tank of an unarmed combat stance.
    Requires: Dragonhide, Elven Shield, Quickslots


    He Xiangu (何仙姑) - Sometimes referred to as "Miss He", she will flirt with anyone. She uses misdirection and a nimble frame to evade and counter the enemies sluggish attacks.

    When quick reflexes activates, use the Slow Time shout and the duration will increase substantially. This allows you to easily maneuver around enemy attacks and land several free blows. Combined with other forms for devastating effect.
    Requires: Quick Reflexes, Slow Time




    Sloshing (晃動) - The "Hollow Body, Wine Belly" concept, is when one acts as if the lower abdomen is filled with wine, allowing for powerful fluid moments. A master's evasions are as graceful as his attacks are devastating. To achieve this in combat, make sure you're always advancing, retreating, dodging or using sideways power attacks. Moving side to side while attacking may even allow you to achieve multiple points of impact with a single swing.

    Daily Meditation (冥想) - You are on the path to enlightenment. Read plenty of books, especially those that grant wisdom pertaining to the skills you seek to master. Pray at the Shrine of Talos often and make the Pilgrimage up to High Hrothgar as regularly as you can, meditating at each shrine along the way...this will help you to become one with nature.

    Karma (業) - Keep your ears open while in town and make it a point to help anyone who needs assistance. Sure, you want to give to beggars when they ask, but there are also tons of great side quests in the game that I think many of us tend to overlook. Townspeople are always asking you to help, but we usually ignore it. Instead, use the charitable nature of this character as an excuse to explore some of those potentially fascinating stories.

  • December 12, 2017

    Figured I'd shake up my normal style, and just take some notes as I head down the build. 

    Ah the first thing that I really liked is the fact that you've mentioned Gift of Charity as one of the character's main powers, usually that's something that's mentioned briefly or down in the Roleplaying section but putting in what's basically your 'Essentials' and I just think it makes it feel like a larger part of the build. That's really enjoyable just as a quick thing to make the build feel a lot more focused on that, while also giving us that instant bit of knowledge on some of the RP. 

    With Heavy Armor you forgot to mention Juggernaut. Not sure if you took more than the single rank (would assume not) but it's best to put it in there just so that your perk spread there is complete. 

    Umm, not entirely sure since it isn't a glitch that I've personally used, but the 'Invisible Shield Charge' (or whatever you want to call it), does it require you to start the Charge and then unequip the shield? I was pretty sure that's how it works, and if I'm right then it might be good to mention. If not then, well I'll live, even cooler now :D All the other forms are really quite interesting, they make the whole combat system a lot more interesting, always love when people work in unarmed stances into combat. Roleplaying is quite nice too, relatively simple but I think that really helps sell it as part of the build (if that makes sense).

    Definitely a like from me Tsyoyaha.

  • December 12, 2017

    Thanks man! Yea, you definitely need to perk Juggernaut once to reach Fists of Steel, but it's not otherwise a utilized perk, so I didn't want it coming off as an armored build (other than your fisticuffs, it's distinctly unarmored). I can include it if it's really that confusing.

    Also you so have to start shield charge with a shield. I definitely mention that, but I was already concerned that I phrased it poorly so you pretty much just confirmed it. Lol. I'll figure out how to say it in a way that makes more sense.

  • December 15, 2017

    Awesome build Tysoyaha, I will have to try out some of those "techniques" you mention in the forms section.  Great fun.


  • Member
    December 15, 2017

    Dang! Stuck reading this build on my phone, so I'm not getting the full effect, but phone or no, this build is the freaking stuff! I LOVE playing unarmed, and the eight forms are blowing my mind. Some of the techniques I am familiar with, but others I knew nothing about (after 6 years of Skyrim, that's pretty impressive :D).

    Also I'm super-excited to be the first to say that a 'Taloist' monk is perhaps one of the most awesome ways of Skyrim-izing a crossworlds build. EVER :D 

    Can't wait to read this when I can finally get to a computer!

  • December 15, 2017

    ShinJin said:

    Dang! Stuck reading this build on my phone, so I'm not getting the full effect, but phone or no, this build is the freaking stuff! I LOVE playing unarmed, and the eight forms are blowing my mind. Some of the techniques I am familiar with, but others I knew nothing about (after 6 years of Skyrim, that's pretty impressive :D).

    Also I'm super-excited to be the first to say that a 'Taloist' monk is perhaps one of the most awesome ways of Skyrim-izing a crossworlds build. EVER :D 

    Can't wait to read this when I can finally get to a computer!


    Thanks man! I'm pretty sure the first technique is a new discovery. That's the great thing about Skyrim, isn't it? Even after all this time there's still more to discover. You should definitely try that technique out, it really looks like you're a Drunken Boxer pretending to hold a cup of Sake...and the spinning punches give unarmed a much more martial arts vibe than the usual brutish brawler feel it has. I'm glad you liked it, researching Zui Quan and the Eight Immortals was absolutely fascinating so I really hope I did it justice.


  • December 15, 2017

    Vargr White-Tree said:

    Awesome build Tysoyaha, I will have to try out some of those "techniques" you mention in the forms section.  Great fun.



    Thanks! I hope you enjoy them. They're nothing game changing but together they keep things fresh.

  • Member
    December 16, 2017

    This build made the TV Twitter page, btw ;D

  • December 16, 2017

    ShinJin said:

    This build made the TV Twitter page, btw ;D


    Cool, I take it that's good?

  • Member
    December 16, 2017

    Yes, unless you consider this bad:

    The latest Crossworlds 3.0 build: The Drunken Boxer! New unarmed tricks and tips, fantastic RP immersion, and the introduction of Taloist Monks. Learn the Eight Immortal Forms here! … #TamrielVault #Events