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Character Build: The Dread Pirate

Tags: #Character Build Necromancer  #Character Build No Crafting  #Character Build Villain  #Race:Redguard  #Rank:Recognized  #Pirate 
  • September 7, 2014
    I've created a number of different pirate themed builds. This one was derived from my desire to play as a pirate king, heading an undead crew with voodoo magic. One who truly makes you feel like a pirate, in spite of the lack of sailing in Skyrim.
    The Dread Pirate is a sailor from Stros M'Kai, who in exchange for fresh bodies to experiment with, is made an apprentice by a Sload on the island N'Gasta.  The captain would utilize necromancy to form his undead crew. Unfortunately, these crew members were only temporary. After a time, his risen crew would fall to ash, making the remains impossible to reuse. The Sload informed his protege that what he would need now to expand his knowledge of necromancy is a sigil stone, which he suggested could be obtained through the college of Winterhold in Skyrim.
    The captain gathered some living crewmen to man his ship, The Winter War, and set sail for Winterhold. Unaccustomed to the icy waters of Skyrim, The Winter War sustained irreversible damage and wound up wrecking just north east of Dawnstar. The crew disbanded, and as the captain was making his way to Winterhold, he was caught in an Imperial ambush..
    The Build
    Race; Redguard
    Stone; The Lord Stone/ The Ritual Stone/w Aetherial crown
    Major Skills
    • Conjuration; To create your zombie pirate crew!
    • Illusion; Illusion is the captain's pirate voodoo magic, used to manipulate enemies minds, driving them insane, causing them to flee in fear, attack their comrades, or become blind to their own corruption.
    • One Handed; To boost the speed and damage done by your wrathful scimitars!
    Minor Skills
    • Heavy Armor; You will be well protected in your Captain's armor, supplemented by your pirate voodoo and human meat shields.
    • Lockpicking; To make plundering a little faster, easier, and much more worth your time.
    • Speech; The captain has a way with words, and gets what he wants, one way or another. He is also a stern, master trader.
    Level 50 Perk Spread
    Stat Distribution2:1:1
    Key Perks; Twin Souls, Master of the Mind, Dual Savagery, Conditioning, Golden Touch, Treasure Hunter, Intimidation, and Master Trader.
    Head: Mourner's cap-Aetherial Crown
    Chest: Banded Iron Armor-Dawnguard Heavy Armor
    Hands: Iron gauntlets-Dawnguard Heavy Gauntlets
    Feet: Iron Boots-Dawnguard Heavy Boots
    Necklace: Necromancer's Amulet-Best bought/found enchanted necklace, or a bonehawk amulet
    Ring: Ring of Namira/or best bought/found enchanted ring
    Weapons; Scimitar, Windshear, Soulrender, and Bloodscythe
    • Soul Tear: Use your voodoo power to rip the soul from your victim, making their corpse a temporary crewmate. 
    • Drain Vitality: Empower yourself by draining the essence of life from your opponent. 
    • Marked for Death: A hex that weakens your foe's morale and corrupts their defenses. 
    • Bend Will: Your voodoo magic can blind your enemy and turn them into your ally. 
    • Dismay: A great hex that strikes fear into the afflicted's heart. 
    • Cyclone: Your ability to manipulate the winds at sea can also blow your enemy away. 
    • Unrelenting Force: Harsh winds that can disintegrate your enemy. 
    • Whirlwind Sprint: A gust of wind shoots you a great distance.
    • Dragonrend: A hex specifically for bringing dragons out of the sky, to their imminent destruction
    All-Maker Stones: Bones of the Earth, Root of Power
    Black Book Abilities: Secret of Arcana, Mora's Boon, Black Market

    Conjuration; Raise Zombie-Dead Thrall, Soul Trap
    Illusion; Calm-Harmony, Fear-Hysteria, Fury-Mayhem, Courage, Rally, Call to Arms
    Feel free to keep some "voodoo dolls" in your inventory!
    • In the beginning of the game, the captain combats like a spell sword. Open with a fury spell to create conflict between the hostile comrades. Feel free to jump right into the fray armed with your voodoo hex in one hand, sword in the other, or dual wielding swords. Ideally, your opening fury spell created a dead body outright, so you can recruit this fallen enemy as a temporary member of your undead, sea-dog crew! Continue to mix fury spells into your combat, turning allies against one another, and raising their fallen friends to fight against them once more. Both Conjuration and Illusion spells are costly early in the game, so you will be relying mostly on your own blade to get the job done. But as you gain levels, building up your magicka pool, and grabbing the necessary cost reduction perks, direct combat will become more of a personal choice, rather than a necessity to your survival.
    • Late-game, the true feel of your pirate kingship settles in. Your single follower and lone temporary zombie will have evolved into three (or more if you choose) swashbuckling followers, and two customizable, never-ashing pirate thralls! You may choose to still open combat with a leveled fury spell, and sit back controlling the battlefield with your advanced voodoo magic, while buffing your crew with the Rally and Call to Arms spells. Only getting involved when an opponent worthy of death by your blade joins the fight. There is also the option to charge! Lead your crew like a fearless king and head a direct assault against any foe in your wake, striking fear into your enemies with the roar of your voice, dual wielding your legendary scimitars!
    • Ranged enemies are your "weakness". They're really not much more than a pest, so long as you properly utilize your voodoo hexes and human meat shields. Move fast to close the distance, with a whirlwind sprint, or literally use your crew members as human shields, using them for cover till your enemy is in range.
    • Dragons: The tactic for dragons doesn't change much, you just gain new utilities along the way. Your allies may have some ranged abilities, but you do not, at least until you've gained one of the number of useful shouts. (Dragonrend, Marked for Death, Drain Vitality, etc.) Allow your crewmen to do what they will, your focus is swift force. I think we're all aware by now of the sweet spot to strike a dragon, once its grounded. If not, it's about a 45 degree angle from the dragon's tail toward its wing on either side. Slip in there and give him everything you've got with your dual wielded blades. The perks Dual Savagery and Conditioning will make you as fast as any heavily armored dual wielder can be, unless your swords still have no enchantments. In this case, feel free to add the Elemental Fury shout into the mix.
    The Crew!
    For your regular follower, I think any of the hirable mercenaries in Skyrim are arguably good choices. Paying rogue cut throats to join your crew is also very fitting for roleplay. I chose the one from Markarth in the Silverblood Inn, just because I like the look of him.
    For thralls, I prefer any of the actual pirates in game, like the ones you find in Solstheim, or the corsairs in skyrim.
    In order to make the character feel like a true captain, I left the quest Alduin's Wall incomplete, to keep Delphine and Esbern as followers. There are other tricks to gaining even more, or other followers, but I felt this pair was the best, and five followers was my personal limit for comfortability. Delphine makes a good roguish crewmate, wears what some of the pirates in game wear, and uses a nice cutlass, with some imagination anyway. I would say Esbern is also dressed appropriately, and with his skillset can be played off well as a pirate mage.
    Recommended Quests
    • The College of Winterhold is your original destination, but gaining entrance is all that's really necessary, to gain access to the Master Conjuration Ritual quest from Phinis Gestor.
    • The Main Quest; up to Alduin's wall, in order to keep Delphine and Esbern as followers.
    • Dawnguard; This quest is only initiated to get your captain's armor. After the armor is acquired, feel free to bail, or stick through a bit longer till you have Serana following you to her family's castle. Avoid this, and you have ANOTHER crew member.
    • Dark Brotherhood; If murdering for big septims isn't enough, you get a sweet unique scimitar out of it! Also, the mini treasure hunts given from the hostages in the torture room make for some piratey fun!
    • Thieves Guild; This character strives for power, because power makes money. TG offers all kinds of opportunities to make some septims, but it's worth it to join even just to unlock the fences.
    • Dragonborn; Become Herma Mora's new champion and seek out the knowledge and power of his black books.
    Any quest where you're in search of some kind of treasure!
    • Deathbrand; Aside from the awesomeness of hunting down one of Tamriel's most notorious pirate's treasure, you gain your main weapons; The legendary scimitars Bloodscythe and Soulrender.
    • Lost to the Ages; A great treasure hunt, which provides your pirate king crown.
    • Blood on the Ice; Gain Mannimarco's ancient amulet and utilize its dark empowerment.
    • The Taste of Death: Acquire Namira's ring, which enables you to empower yourself by feasting on the life force of fallen foes.
    • The Black Star: The black star is a great asset for recharging your scimitars!
    • No Stone Unturned; Completion of this quest in conjunction with the perks Golden Touch and Treasure Hunter will greatly enhance your loot!
    • Forgotten Names; Help the Dremora Pirate Velehk Sain free himself and gain a map to his buried treasure!
    • In My Time of Need; Complete this one early, siding with Saadia to get a load of scimitars for you and your crew!
    • Lights Out!; Take out another band of pirates, steal their hidden treasure!
    • Daedric Quests: Any and all  you choose! A chance to make a pact with a Daedric lord in exchange for power isn't one to overlook. Both Haknir Deathbrand and Velehk Sain were known to have dealings with Daedra, but you'll best them both!
    • The Legend of Red Eagle
    • Forbidden Legend
    • Ashore in a Sea of Ghosts

    Many misc quests and treasure map hunts!

    Roleplaying Notes
    Whenever you're faced with some kind of decision, or are trying to decide if a certain quest is appropriate and worth this buccaneer's time, ask yourself this; Will this make me more powerful, and will I make a significant amount of money? These are the things that drive this character. You are a power hungry, greedy pirate king. Mercy is not a word in this villains vocabulary. Never leave survivors, and savor the torturous pain and madness created by your voodoo hexes. Your presence strikes fear into the hearts of men and mer, and you are not afraid to throw your weight around. The captain is smart, but if intimidation is a speech option, I generally take it. In spite of all this power, you must remember, you are a PIRATE! Steal anything and everything you can carry, then sell it to make some gold and up the speech skill. Selling so much loot really helps to get the speech skill leveled up. I really strived to make this pirate an individual, avoiding the typical armor choices, but there are reasons why Deathbrand and Velehk Sane are so notorious. Consider them like role models, but simultaneously competition. Their greatness motivates you, and drives you to become the greatest and most feared pirate in the history of Tamriel.
    Closing Notes
    If you've got this far, thank you for taking the time to read my first build!
    My goal was to make a character that truly feels like a pirate, which I blended with my love of Necromancy, and it has been a very unique playthrough. Any others who play it, I hope you enjoy it!
    I'm open to any feedback, questions, and constructive criticism, so please like and comment below!
    Also, BIG thanks to Trickmaster Alastor for his input and providing the perk spread image!
  • Member
    September 7, 2014
    Oh, another pirate build, neat. We need more pirates. The main I can think now are Torran Ap Daqual, The Legendary Corsair by me, the Maurauder, and Harkon Deathbrand
  • Nik
    September 7, 2014
    Ohh very awesom build, defiently going to try him out sometime!
  • September 7, 2014

    Is that sarcasm I hear?

  • Member
    September 7, 2014
    Pirate build! Automatic +1!!!!
  • September 7, 2014
    Interesting twist on the old pirate build, only critical thing I'd say is that even though they're great it seems very, very heavy on pictures. Oh and +1 from me.
  • Member
    September 7, 2014
    A tiny bit, but I do like pirates, and genuinely think we need more of them
  • September 7, 2014
    Looking back, I suppose you're right about the number of pictures. Haha I don't think there are too many, just clumped too close in the beginning. But later, there's a lot of text that couldn't be broken by pictures. So! At least they look cool! Many builds I've read, the pictures are what really inspired me, so removing one may create risk of denying someone's inspiration!
  • September 7, 2014
    I appreciate all the likes and support, guys! Thank you all!
  • Member
    September 7, 2014
    Seriously Wicked, awesome build! A pirate build is one thing but a Necromantic pirate king takes it to another level :) This doesn't even look like a first build you did such a pro job. Here's the first of many +1's!