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Character Build: The Crepuscular

Tags: #Character Build Illusionist  #Character Build Nightblade  #Character Build Villain  #Rank:Legendary  #Hall of Fame Build 
  • Member
    May 14, 2013



    "The light that gleams by day, becomes the blade that slithers at night."

    The self-styled Crepuscular is a well mannered, manipulative socialite by day, and a fearless stalker by night. With an obsessive penchant for killing , the masked Crepuscular prides herself on her shadow like movement and manner of operation. There aren't many people with eyes fast enough to be able to keep track of her, but if someone manages to catch a glimpse, the Crepuscular's powerful mind tricks and endless supply of poisons will render them incapable or unwilling to act. Usually, though, nobody is able to see her coming due to her meticulous planning and wide arsenal of spells and elixirs. Her poisons are especially dangerous, as the Crepuscular devotes most of her time into perfecting her vile concoctions.
    What the Crepuscular loves most is taking throats, of course. Her fascination with death makes for an intense experience as she feels the victim's pulse quicken and then cease under her hands. The Crepuscular is no violent psychopath, however. She usually goes for particularly glamorous targets, and when she chooses, she does it for the thrill of slipping unseen past enemies, eliminating her target and then going back unnoticed the way she came. Just know that if you ever catch a glimpse of a glistening blade in the corner of your eye, be quick to say your prayers, because it's only a matter of seconds before that certain blade will be pressed against your throat.

    This is my attempt at a rather standard Nightblade build, with a twist. The fun of this build comes from its roleplay elements. Rather than just taking out every enemy in its path, the Crepuscular quietly skulks around her enemies, killing as few as possible, aside from the target, of course. Whether it be a camp of bandits, a witch coven or a Thalmor agency, your aim should be to directly kill as few as possible, if any at all as you make your way to your target.


    ●Race: Female Imperials or Bretons make the best Crepusculars, due to their intrigue-ridden homelands. Any other humanoid race would also fit pretty well. Do your best to make her attractive, however, as the Crepuscular often uses her seductive allure to obtain what she needs.
    ●Standing Stone: Shadow or Thief. Thief for the obvious bonus to raising stealth skills. Shadow is always useful and fits the character best.
    ●Stat Distribution: 2/1/0. The Crepuscular is rarely involved in open combat, so stamina isn't necessary. High Magicka will help with maintaining our Illusion/ Alteration related costs.
    ●Vampirism: Not absolutely necessary, but it does help, with a hefty Sneak/ Illusion bonus and useful abilities. Not imposed by background, however; whether a Vampire or not, the Crepuscular is equally dangerous.



    Illusion: Your bread and butter. Usually you'll be Muffling yourself or slinging spells from cover, like Frenzy if you need to eliminate a group of enemies and Calm if you're spotted. At higher levels, Invisibility truly makes you into a shadow. You'll be taking all the perks except for Master Illusion, since the master spells aren't suited for a stealth based character. Make sure you get the Quiet Casting perk asap for maximum efficiency.

    Sneak: You should get all the perks, although Silence is rendered obsolete by your Muffle spell, and Shadow Warrior isn't that useful when you can just Calm your enemies if you're detected. Backstab is obviously a must to ensure that you'll always 1HKO your targets.

    Alteration: Detect Life is an esential tool for planning your escapades, and it may just save you from running into a room full of enemies. Later on, Paralyze can replace Calm for disposing of unwanted witnesses.

    Alchemy: The Alchemist, Poisoner and Concentrated Poison perks should maximize the potency of your poisons.


    One Handed: The Armsman perks are really the only ones worth getting, as they're the only ones who make a difference damage-wise.

    Speech: Haggling, Allure and Persuasion are useful more for roleplay than practical use, but still, Speechcraft is an important skill for the Crepuscular to maintain her daily appearance.

    Perk Spread

    Level 20 | Level 40

    Useful Potions

     Broodwail Philtre: The Crepuscular's trademark. As this deadly liquid spreads through the veins, it quickly damages the nervous system, leaving the victim paralyzed if they somehow manage to survive the potion's deadly effect in the first place.

    Deathbell + Imp Stool + Slaughterfish Egg

    Damage Health, Lingering Damage Health, Paralyze

     Backstab Draught: This elixir rejuvenates and steadies the body, and sharpens the reflexes. The Crepuscular usually takes this before approaching her target, so as to ensure that she will be able to properly enjoy it.

    Hawk Feathers + Purple Mountain Flower + Small Pearl

    Fortify One-handed, Fortify Sneak, Restore Stamina

     Venom: This basic poison stimulates certain parts of the brain that send the poisoned into a violent rage, making it impossible for him to distinguish friend from foe. While the effects wear off rather quickly, it can be useful when Magicka reserves are low.

    Blisterwort + Falmer Ear


     Philter of Decceleration: The Crepuscular does not enjoy her targets running around everywhere. For certain situations, she has devised a poison that affects muscles and cripples movement, all the while sapping the victim's health.

    Deathbell + River Betty

    Damage Health, Slow



    Throw Voice: Using her Thu'um, the Crepuscular displaces her voice, tricking her enemies into searching for her in the wildest places while she's already gone.

    Throw voice is an assasin's trademark, and is useful for avoiding conflict or tricking your targets into an easy assassination.

    Slow Time: Her Voice gives the Crepuscular the power to move much faster than her enemies, giving an occasion for a speedy escape, or, on the contrary, allowing her to move in closer for the kill.

    Slow Time is a very useful shout for when you're cornered by large groups; it gives you time to think and to escape. It's also good for getting close to patrolling enemies without being detected.

    Become Ethereal: As her voice is heard, the Crepuscular becomes a spectral apparition, invulnerable to both weapon and magic.

    Not particularly useful gameplay-wise, but it fits the story. The Crepuscular becomes attuned with her patron, the Shadow and weapons and spells pass right through her.

    Whirlwind Sprint: The Crepuscular dashes at amazing speeds, whether away from enemies or right at their throat.

    Useful for getting around quicker behind cover or escaping after you've been spotted.

    Special Powers

    Mark of the Chosen - Paralyze + Blade of Woe + Backstab

    For the Crepuscular, the moment of killing her chosen is the ultimate pleasure, exhilaration beyond words. That's why she takes her time in enjoying the sensation thoroughly, while the helpless victim can only look her in the eye and pray their death be swift.

    Paralyze so they know you're there, but can't run. Blade of Woe for the drain effect which makes it look like she actually gets something from the kill. And, you know, backstabbing. That's how assassins work.

    ✥ Predator Games - Fear + Invisibility + Backstab

    The Crepuscular enjoys toying with her prey. She strikes from the shadows right when the victim is most terrified, but their screams are never heard.

    Also good as a finishing move. Chasing after your prey sure is dramatic, huh?

    ✥ Shadow Blink - Quiet Casting + Whirlwind Sprint

    Her movement a whisper, the Crepuscular escapes the vicinity of her enemies before they even have a chance to sense her presence.

    This is useful for escaping messy situations, and also for getting around quicker and unnoticed.

    ✥ Dance of Madness - Become Ethereal + Frenzy

    The Crepuscular twists and turns the minds of her enemies as she emerges from the shadows and becomes one herself, impervious to all weapons. As she stands in their midst, her foes are felled by their own comrades' blades.

    Useful for clearing big groups of enemies or fights that cannot be avoided. Everyone dies around while you get to peacefully watch.

    ✥ Deadly Diversion - Frenzy + Fear

    Her foes puppets in her hands, the Crepuscular sends one into a violent rage and another in a helpless panic, as they chase eachother out of her way.

    This is great for distracting enemies and getting them not only kill eachother, but do it a safe distance from you.



    Armor - The Nightingale Set & Optional Shrouded Gloves

      Armor: Stamina Boost, Frost Resistance

       Boots: Muffle

       Gloves: Fortify Lockpicking, Fortify One Handed

       Hood: Fortify Illusion

    The Nightingale Set is a perfect fit. Although you have to go through a lenghty questline to obtain it, it's worth the effort. The Muffle enchantment takes one worry away in that you don't have to worry about recasting it. Fortify Illusion and One Handed are great matches for this build. And on top of all that, it looks absolutely awesome and it fits the Crepuscular perfectly, as the mask protects her identity while she's prowling. Nightingale Gloves can be efficiently replaced by a pair of Shrouded Gloves, since double Backstab bonus pretty much guarantees an instakill.

    Weapon - The Blade of Woe/ Mehrunes Razor

    The Blade of Woe is, again, a perfect match for the Crepuscular. The Life Drain enchantment fits the idea that she gets a rejuvenating sensation from killing her victims. Mehrunes Razor is an okay equivalent because its unique chance to instakill. Backstab already does the trick, but the Crepuscular saves her dagger for her chosen only; it makes sense that victims that are given this sort of special treatment are sure to die.

    Ring/ Amulet - Fortify Sneak/ Illusion

    You really don't want to be detected, since this build is lousy in open combat, so Fortify Sneak is definitely a good idea. Fortify Illusion is also good to lower those costs so you're able to cast more often and on more targets.



    The Crepuscular's playstyle isn't really versatile. It revolves around one basic principle: avoid detection by all means. Detect Life is therefore essential for planning your movement throughout the game. For maximum efficiency, use it every time you enter a different room to scout out the area and figure out the pattern of patrolling enemies. Still, if you are detected, a well aimed Calm spell or a quick Whirlwind sprint will get you out of danger. Make sure that you hide far away from the enemy so they don't stumble across you by accident. You can always come back and try again once they give up on searching for you. Later on, Invisibility coupled with Muffle will make you impossible to detect (unless you bump into enemies, but I think we've all been there, lols). For fights that can't be avoided, Dance of Madness or Deadly Diversion can help getting enemies out of the way. The Crepuscular isn't very flexible, but if played right, can be very entertaining.


    Ah, finally, the roleplay section. In my opinion, if you really want this build to feel special, you should stick to the story as much as possible, since this will offer you the best experience on this build. 

    That being said, a few backstory elements. The Crepuscular is a deranged, sadistic killer indeed, but that is a persona that she manages to hide very well in her daily life. She owns a nice home, only wears the finest clothes and jewellery, goes shopping every day, is well mannered and polite to everyone. She's also beautiful, intelligent and independent, although she does express the wish to marry and have a family for herself as well. She's friendly with everyone, but nobody can really say they're friends, since no one actually knows much about herself.

    Her true persona comes out once the night comes. Once the Crepuscular dons her mask, she lets go of her daily appearance and transforms into a cold, calculated killer. She chooses her victims by an unknown pattern; usually it's strong or influent people, those that are more likely to be well guarded. Part of her entertainment involves eluding said guards as she skulks around in the shadows stalking for her prey. The other part, and one she takes much pleasure in, is taking their life. Her sadistic nature manifests not in the sense of enjoying blood or gore. On the contrary, the Crepuscular is repulsed by dirty objects and will never let blood spill on her attire; she handles her prey rather carefully. But the thing she enjoys most is looking a man in the eye and seeing that he knows that his or her death is coming, and she'll be the one to deliver it. In that moment, she experiences a sensation like no other, which culminates with her slitting her target's throat and watching them die. 

    Of course, she enjoys playing with other people as well. By day, she manipulates everyone by acting the part of the generic pretty woman; by night, she works her illusion magic to bend her foes' minds. However, her blade is an honor she reserves for her chosen only, and those had better watch out. For when the Crepuscular sets her eyes on something, she'll stop at nothing to get what she wants.

    In short, to act the character well during this playthrough, here's what you need to do:

    Never kill any enemies directly if  possible, except for your targets. Frenzy them, make them flee, use traps in the dungeon, or simply sneak by them if your skill is high enough. Your blade should be reserved for your chosen.

    If you're detected, do not engage in open combat. Instead, create a distraction, hide, and return when things have calmed down. You can use Illusion Spells, Whirlwind Sprint, Slow Time, or a combination of these to get away.

    Your targets can be anyone you deem fit (non-essential, of course). Bandit chiefs, noblemen, store owners, stewards etc. If they draw your attention, go ahead and kill them, but make sure you do it undetected and slip out the same.

    Buy a home in one of the major cities asap, preferably Solitude. Every day, go out at least once and make sure that you are seen by people; chat to them every now and then.

    Only hunt at night. That means that all your missions and quests should be done at night time, except for those that have to be completed during a certain time of the day.

    When hunting, keep your face covered as soon as you get hold of something that can properly conceal your face.

    If you do marry, take your husband/ wife out now and then, so people can see you two. However, if he somehow stumbles across proof of your deeds (i.e. armor pieces, blades) kill him/ her instantly. Make sure you hide the body.

    Never use intimidation, only persuasion.

    Loot as few of the collateral victims as possible. The Crepuscular has no need for the possessions of the dead.

    Try your best to make your character as good looking as you can. She's supposed to be pretty and deceitful.

    It's okay to join the Dark Brotherhood, since they welcome people like you. However, when possible, find alternative ways to kill the easier contracts (aka Narfi). Get a follower to do it, frenzy them while they're near people; you'll find a way. If not, just kill them, but feel bad about it.

    You'll have to join the Thieves Guild for the armor, but do as little stealing as possible, preferably only when it's needed to advance the questline.

    Kill your targets in as many ways as you can think of. Make them flee then chase them down. Paralyze them and take you time. Use your Broodwail Philtre etc.

    Alignment: Neutral Evil


    Well, that's it, folks. Looking back on what I wrote, I now realise it could have been way more solid and that it's gonna be really hard for someone to completely stick to the character throughout the whole playthrough, especially at the beginning. But, well, this is my first build, and I don't plan for it to be my last. Hopefully my next one will be more consistent; also, I hope you guys will enjoy playing the Crepuscular. I know I did. Have fun, cheers!


    ❋ The Scholar ❋

    The Warmaiden ✽

     The Anti-Paladin 

  • May 14, 2013

    This looks good, I'll give more feedback in a minute, but you should change the name to "Character Build: The Crepuscular".

  • Member
    May 14, 2013

    Right, changed that. Thanks for the tip-off :D

  • Member
    May 14, 2013
    Nice presentation: check Cool backstory: check Intriguing roleplay: check I like this very much! Great build, just like you said: a typical nightblade with a twist. This is the ultimate, "play with your prey"-build. +1
  • Member
    May 14, 2013
    There you go, your first like ;-) I have to say, there is something alluring about seductive calculative killers.
  • May 14, 2013

    A really good first build you have here. I think it stands out from the crowd of standard nightblades in that you only kill the target/most powerful enemy in any dungeon you come across.

    I can say from experience, sneaking through dungeons, avoiding killing the bandits or draugr can be a very enjoyable play style.

    I also really like the way you've presented this. Normally I don't like seeing any other text color than black, but your choice is easy to read and fitting with the pictures you've added in.

    Overall a really good first build. Welcome to the blog.

  • May 14, 2013
    I can't pronounce the name of the build, what is it? It's nice, the name is just difficult
  • Member
    May 14, 2013

    Thank you! There is now, isn't it? Everyone seems to love Black Widows for some reason.

  • Member
    May 14, 2013

    This build is very very good for a first build, I guess you've been lurking here for some time. I played a build similar to this, it is very fun to play and roleplay. I gave you your like. Oh and, welcome to the Blog my name is Vlad too actually.

  • Member
    May 14, 2013

    Thanks, it's nice to be here :) so many good builds to try out, so little time. As for no-kill stealth gameplay, I do agree that it's a lot more challenging to only kill certain targets, but it's also a lot of fun. And it's certainly more of a refined assassin's touch.