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Pure Archer Tactics

    • 37 posts
    March 16, 2013 5:49 PM EDT

    I am currently playing as a pure archer. No swords or back up weaponry just a bow and crossbow. In the earlier levels it was essential to think of ways to survive against many enemies. Set a fire rune on oil to shoot. using shouts to push back enemies or make a quick escape from being surrounded. I came to wonder what the community has created for tactics. Post below of any tactics that have saved your life or were just too fun to not use 

    • 708 posts
    March 16, 2013 5:58 PM EDT

    Have a melee follower/summon, let them take the hits for you while you just shoot everyone with impunity. Works really well once you get power shot, especially with a crossbow where you stagger almost every shot

    • 37 posts
    March 16, 2013 6:00 PM EDT

    Haha yeah the crossbow can be overkill at times. I keep Serana with me most of the time she can be a life saver

    • 7 posts
    March 16, 2013 6:06 PM EDT

    love archer!!! obvi best skills that complement are alchemy, poison potions, and paralysis are great i acually put poison on hot key, so u dont have to pause game. and again sneak and first strike are great. and best shouts are whirlwind to escape quick and become etheral.

    • 41 posts
    March 16, 2013 6:10 PM EDT

    I really dislike "archers" that play like mages. Using a tank to avoid all damage. The point here is to make decent damage from a safe distance. But to still be able to draw a melee weapon and fight at close range.

    If all you want is to to sit down and keep shooting arrows while Lydia Is taking all the damage than what's the point in using a bow or a crossbow? Just wear some robes and be a mage than.

    At least that's what I see when talking about a "pure archer".

    • 37 posts
    March 16, 2013 6:11 PM EDT

    I just started putting perks into alchemy. Kept waiting and waiting. Once my archery was up and my light armor and smithing were good, I started to put in alchemy. I didn't realize it was already at level 40 

    • 856 posts
    March 16, 2013 6:12 PM EDT

    The following are excerpts from my "Adventuring Tips" post that I made the same month of Skyrim's release.

    If you are attacking from stealth, move after firing your bow. The enemy often will head toward the origin of the shot (good to know if you use runes). Firing an arrow past an enemy can misdirect them... Often times they will give up looking for you, allowing you to make another surprise attack....

    Nearly all traps can be activated from a distance with a well place bow shot.  (Unfortunately this does not work with runes).

    You may find some nice tidbits in the comments within Ulysses post "Which do you find more satisfying: Bows or Crossbows"


    • 37 posts
    March 16, 2013 6:19 PM EDT

    It might with explosive bolts 

    • 291 posts
    March 16, 2013 6:20 PM EDT
    • Poisons or enchanted weapons that slow, do frost damage, or paralyze.
    • Frenzy poisons at lower levels.
    • Becoming very adept at jumping onto objects to gain the higher ground.
    • Learning Slow Time, Become Ethereal, and Ice Form shouts, the latter two especially useful for getting out of range.
    • Remembering that in Vanilla Skyrim, the lighter a bow is, the better it is for close combat as it will have a faster draw time.  Therefore, Hunting Bows and Longbows, while weak, can make for incredibly useful weapons at close range when you need that speed to paralyze/stagger an opponent.  The exception to this would be Auriel's Bow and Zephyr, both of which are far more powerful bows while maintaining Longbow draw speed.
    • When firing shots, remember that your arrow will arc UP over the crosshair before coming down:
      • A close range shot should involve aiming slightly lower than you anticipate.  If you are at one end of an interior room, for example, you should aim at the stomach if you wish to hit the chest.
      • A medium range shot should be aimed even lower as the arch becomes more pronounced over distance.  A medium range shot would be something like shooting at the Jorrvaskr targets from the wall.  You need to aim for the waist or knees if you want to hit the chest.
      • A long range shot should be aimed either at the crosshair or lower depending on the weight of the bow you are using.  A long range shot is something akin to standing at the far wall in the Castle Dour training yard and shooting one of the targets.  Lighter bows will lose trajectory faster and at the example listed above, will come back down to the crosshair.  So if you're about that distance with a lighter bow, you should aim at the crosshair.  With heavier bows, they will continue to arc much higher and will likely require twice that distance before the arrow falls back to the crosshair.
    • 7 posts
    March 16, 2013 6:22 PM EDT

    haha, i actually dont use followers when i be an archer, more than once have i actually killed Lydia in the narrow depths, they get in the way. also as an archer i HATE the dawnguard questline and serena staying on my ass

    • 41 posts
    March 16, 2013 6:28 PM EDT

    At least Serena is a mage, so she doesn't stay in the way of your arrows =P

    • 856 posts
    March 16, 2013 6:29 PM EDT

    good point, I'll have to test that.

    • 88 posts
    March 16, 2013 6:33 PM EDT

    This. I like this. +1

    • 490 posts
    March 16, 2013 7:19 PM EDT
    • 37 posts
    March 16, 2013 8:27 PM EDT
    Very nice Henson
    I might do that for when I play as an argonian
    I know they dont have the infinite stamina ability but ive never actually played as an argonian before
    • 29 posts
    March 16, 2013 8:43 PM EDT

    Strafing side to side helps a lot when detected. Also I see some people on videos keep zoom pressed when reloading their bow, which wastes stamina for aiming. 

    • 37 posts
    March 18, 2013 12:36 PM EDT
    I've notice this as well. I've become more comfortable using the zoom option for crossbow usually while the nordic bow just shoots as many arrows as possible
    • 37 posts
    March 18, 2013 6:30 PM EDT

    I was carrying a silver sword at first then became pretty underpowered as my bows became more powerful. Been thinking of making an Argonian Shadowscale that uses Bound Bow and Bound Dagger as his weapons