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Event Build: The Warlock of Orsinium

Tags: #Character Build Necromancer  #Character Build Summoner  #Character Build Vampire  #Race:Orsimer  #Rank:Event Bloodworks  #Karver Builds  #Event:Against Type  #MM 2016 Winner 
  • November 14, 2016

    I was never a big fan of vampires or Vampire Lords, but I noticed that these days, the Vampire Lord reset glitch (that resets your racial abilities) is quite popular so I thought I should give it a try. Sadly, the glitch didn't work for me, but that didn't stop me from rolling this awesome character anyway. I love Orcs, everyone knows that and this one is an Orc Vampire, necromancer, and just a pure badass that can fill many roles in the battlefield. Orc vampire charging with a Bound Battleaxe? Check. Necromancer/Summoner using followers and an undead dog? Check. Necromage? Ah, well...check. 

    "I was born into Nova Orsinium, during a time when Orsimer were a prosperous race, part of an Empire. I was there when the Bretons and Redguards came, leveled it to the ground, and forced us to flee to Skyrim, with a Fifth Imperial Legion making a rearguard of this chain of refugees. When the Imperials were dying for us, for Orcs, I made a promise to myself. I won't die until the dream of Orsinium becomes permanent. Ever-lasting. And with each Orsinium, with each House of Orsimer Glories being destroyed by Bretons and Nords...I'm becoming more angry."

    "There is a new Orsinium in Wrothgar, and I have founded yet another House of Orsimer Glories. I'm bound to Skyrim to seek knowledge and artifacts to fill the shelves of my museum. And to find allies against the Redguards and Bretons. Because I'm Orsinium's Warlock and I will make sure Orsimer will rise again. United."

                                                                                                            Urzus the Librarian, the Warlock of Orsinium


    Race: Orc Vampire

    Stone: Mage>Lord

    Stats: 2/1/0 until you have 200 Health, then full Magicka. 

    Major Skills: Alteration, Conjuration, Restoration

    Minor Skills: Destruction, Two-Handed


    So we have a badass Orc Vampire using Necromage with plenty of variety in combat, making it fun to play from the beginning to the end. I'm not a big fan of Necromage, but it seemed like a good choice here, though I decided to balance it with the Necromancer's Amulet, which means something very close to zero health and stamina regeneration.

    This guy is a scholar who is in Skyrim looking for books and artifacts, a perfect build for getting Achievements like Oblivion Walker and Reader, but that doesn't mean he's completely helpless. He's an Orc. And not just an Orc, but a  Vampire, a Summoner, a Necromancer, a Healer, and a Berserker...he's lot of things.

    There are several ways you can approach combat, be it just charging with your Bound Battleaxe, staying behind and casting Ice Storms, or maybe just healing your allies and taking more of a supportive role, or you can just unleash the fury of Vampire Lord. 


    Enter Twice - Exit Only Once
    Alteration will lead 
    you to Destruction
    Only Illusion shows the 
    way to Restoration
    Conjure not, but 
    be conjured instead


    "To master Alteration, first accept that reality is a falsehood. Our reality is a perception of greater forces impressed upon us for their amusement. To cast Alteration spells is to convince a greater power that it will be easier to change reality as requested than to leave it alone. Express the spell as a subtle change and it is more likely to be successful." - Reality and Other Falsehoods

    The Warlock uses Alteration to shape the reality around his body, changing his skin into hardened materials that can stop any blade from drawing his blood. Because of his vampiric weakness to fire, Magic Resistance perks come in quite handy, especially when you travel to Solstheim to obtain other useful spells in the school like Ash Rune and Ash Shell. Paralyze is a very useful spell later in the game so that one will be important for the Warlock as well.



    “Your imagination and willpower (emphasis mine) are the keys.  There is no need for a spell to give you a resistance to air, or a resistance to flowers, and after you cast the charm, you must forget there is even a need for a spell to give you resistance to fire.  Do not confuse what I am saying: resistance is not about ignoring the fire’s reality.  You will feel the substance of flame, the texture of it, its hunger, even the heat of it, but you will know that it will not hurt or injure you.” 2920: Rain's Hand, Book 4

    With his small army of summoned creatures, undead, an Orc Follower, and a dread hound, Restoration comes in handy not only to heal the Warlock's own injuries but to heal his allies, giving him the chance to switch to a supportive role in the battlefield. Healing and Necromantic Healing is the bread and butter of this school, but Poison Rune isn't completely neglected either, giving the Warlock an offensive means of using the Restoration school. Turn Undead isn't neccessary because of Oblivion Binding perk. Necromage and Respite further increase the Warlock's capabilities to heal himself and his allies.



    "What forces must be reigned in to cast the spell: fire, lightning, or frost? And what are the advantages and dangers of each? What are the responses from different targets from the assault of different spells of destruction? What are the possible defenses and how may they be assailed? What environmental factors must be taken into consideration? What are the advantages of a spell of delayed damage? Bero suggests that the School of Destruction cannot be subtle, yet he forgets about all the Curses that fall under the mantle of the school, sometimes affecting generation after generation in subtle yet sublime ways." Response to Bero's Speech

    Harnessing the Frost magic of the Destruction School increases the Warlock's capabilities in long range battles. Using Ice Spikes, Ice Storms and Ice Cloaks make him a very dangerous opponent to almost everything that lives, and even some things that no longer belong to the lands of the living. The reason why I picked Frost is that these spells hurt your Thralls the least, but I think the build could work even with some hell fire.



    "Likewise, lesser entities bound by their Daedra Lords into weapons and armor may be summoned for brief periods, or may persist indefinitely, so long as they are not destroyed and banished. The class of bound weapons and bound armors summoned by Temple followers and conjurors are examples of short-term bindings; Daedric artifacts like Mehrunes Razor and the Mask of Clavicus Vile are examples of long-term bindings." Darkest Darkness

    This isn't just some weak, squishy mage. This is an Orsimer, strong and furious when it comes to meeting his enemies face to face. The Warlock uses the Bound Battleaxe as an extenstion of his arms.  When this is combined with his Berserker Rage, he becomes an opponent to be feared on the battlefield.




    "It first fell to Elven wizards to crack open the door to Oblivion without its screaming horrors spilling uncontrollably into Mundus. Corvus and Calani Direnni and their clan first lit the torch and peered into this unholy darkness, lighting the path for the magical school of conjuration. Their precise binding chants are still used to this day when summoning lesser Daedra." The Origins of Conjuration

    The Warlock is a master Summoner, Conjurer, and Necromancer, bringing a wide variety of creatures to his side. Early game will see huge use of the Frost Atronach and raising dead, with  Dawnguard's Undead Summons, Ash Guardian and Dread Zombies being used in late game. Banish Daedra isn't used here, because of the Oblivion Binding perk used for Bound Battleaxe.


    The Revenant, the Necromancer's Moon, watches over us all. His Form, ascended to Godhood, has taken its rightful place in the sky, and hides the enemy Arkay from us so that we may serve Him. Watch for the signs: when the heavenly light descends from above, hasten to His altars and make your offering, so that He may bless you with but a taste of His true power. - Necromancer's Moon

    Boots and Gloves are self-enchanted. With no perks or fortify enchanting effects 13% Fortify Two-Handed is still quite a nice boost giving the Warlock a neccessary edge in melee. 

    Necromancer's Amulet boosts Conjuration and Magicka at the cost of reduced regeneration of Health and Stamina. I'm not a guy who likes to use glitches, but Necromage felt appropriate, so I decided to offset it with this amulet. So if my calculations are right, Necromage and the Necromancer's Amulet should reduce your regeneration by 94%. Add to that the sun damage from being a vampire, and you will have no health regeneration. 

    Robes are random loot found on necromancers and conjurers and when I found one with Fortify Destruction and more importantly with a hood...I was set.

    I was mostly using rings that Fortify Destruction, but that's really open to discussion. Fortify Restoration or Alteration could work to, depending on what role you prefer in combat.


    The skillful battlemage ensures that they are in balance; a weight lifted by one hand is heavier than two weights lifted by both hands.  The best victories are those unforeseen by the enemy, but obvious to everyone afterwards. The skillful battlemage ensures that the enemy is already defeated before the battle begins. Win your victory ahead of time. When the enemy knows he is defeated before the battle begins, you may not need to fight. Victory in battle is only the least kind of victory. Victory without battle is the acme of skill. Conserving your power is another key to victory. Putting forth your strength to win a battle is no demonstration of skill. This is what we call tactics, the least form of the art of war magic. - The Art of War Magic

    To be honest here...I had an absolute blast with this guy in combat. So many roles, so many much fun! Because your magicka reserves are not infinite, you usually go into a fight with a mind set on what you want to do, and so I did. I broke the combat into several stances, focusing on certain sets of spells, switching between two stances tops during a fight. 

    Before I start listing these stances, understand that without your summons and undead, you are severly weakened. You rely on them, so you'll always have them at the start of every combat. For the early game, I recomend using the strongest Raise Undead spell you have, but if you find yourself in a situation where your thrall fails you, the Frost Atronach is your best bet. In later game, the Mistman and Wraithman are just amazing summons, taking advantage of both sides of the Conjuration tree and you can also heal them! Pair that with a follower and you have plenty of cannon fodder.

    Controller - Ash Shell, Ash Rune, Paralyze

    The School of Alteration is all about possibilities, changing patterns, making things be what they could be. The spells of Alteration are all about uncommon sense. The infinite possibilities, breaking the sky, swallowing space, dancing with time, setting ice on fire, believing that the unreal may become real. You must learn the rules of the cosmos and then break them. - Breathing Water

    This stance is one of those that can be easily combined with other stances, namely Healer for example. Paralyze should be a no-brainer here, very useful against every living opponent, but for all intensive purposes, I have to say that Ash Shell worked much better for me here. In combat, you usually don't want to spend all your magicka on crowd controlling everyone, you pick your targets; archers and mages usually. Ash Shell is perfect for this. Also, the way Ash Shell/Rune works is so bloody awesome! The effect makes enemies or allies invulnarable, so you can use it to safeguard your followers, but it removes those enemies out of combat. So if you use it on every enemy, you will regenerate your Magicka just like if you were outside of combat. Because you are.


    Healer - Necromantic Healing, Healing Hands, Poison Rune

    It took him some time to master it, visualizing magicka streaming through his body, pumping through the very fibers of his muscles for a time, giving him strength far beyond the puny power nature had intended. He learned how to shrug off the effects of frost, poison, fire, and charges of lightning, pulling the pain into a reservoir of magicka and expelling it. - The Four Suitors of Benitah

    Being a healer doesn't mean you can't do damage, right? While you are keeping your thralls or summons alive, two to three Poison Runes can nicely increase the potential damage output. And Poison Rune doesn't work on undead, so your thralls should be completely safe. It just depends on what follower are you using, whether a mage or melee tank. I recommend a melee tank for the early game, before you even obtain the Poison Rune, and a mage like Talvas Fathryon for later game - he's one bloody amazing follower with his Fireballs and Icestorms.


    Battlemage - Ice Spike, Ice Storm, Frost Cloak, Bound Bow

    It is popular, especially among young upstarts who wish to establish themselves as intellectual contenders, to dismiss the study of harnessing the destructive potential of magicka as crude or simplistic. Those who embrace this argument prefer to spend time researching obscure theoretical topics instead of the more practical applications of magic. - Destruction or Distraction

    Frost spells certainly aren't the most powerful ones when it comes to damage, because half of the enemies in Skyrim are resistant to this element, but that was precisely the reason why I picked it. Ice Storms are such cool spells, but how to utilize them if you have followers in front of you? Undead are resistent to Frost, so...yeah, precisely. You don't have to worry about damaging your thralls and summons much. Ice Spikes are great for long range fights and while I wasn't using a single perk for Archery, Bound Bow is still very powerful and useful when you run out of Magicka but still want to be effective.


    Berserker - Bound Battleaxe, Ebonyflesh, Whirlwind Cloak, Berserker Rage

    Transliminal passage of quickened objects or entities without the persistent agency of hyperagonal media is not possible, and even if possible, would result in instantaneous retromission of the transported referents. Only a transpontine circumpenetration of the limen will result in transits of greater than infinitesimal duration. - Liminal Bridges

    There are moments when you'll want to charge into battle and fight alongside your thralls, blood spraying everywhere. And with this build, you can! Ebonyflesh and Whirlwind Cloak are your go-to spells here, which will most likely leave you with a very small amount Magicka left. Whirlwing Cloak flings your enemies away, making them invulnerable for a few seconds (though I noticed Wraithmen with Dragonbone Warhammers still managed to do damage - Skullcrusher?) With Necromage, the Lord Stone, and Ebonyflesh, your armor rating will get really high in late game, but try to reserve some magicka for emergency heaing. 


    Higher Undead - Drain Health, Summon Gargoyle, Mist Form

    I told him about the most powerful tribe, the Volkihar, paranoid and cruel, whose very breath could freeze their victims' blood in the veins. I explained to him how they lived beneath the ice of remote and haunted lakes, never venturing into the world of men except to feed. - Immortal Blood

    Is it just me or is the Vampire Lord really overpowered? I used the form mostly when things went south and thanks to it, I got out of several tough situations. Gargoyles are extremely tanky and Mist Form allows you to regenerate your Magicka and Health rather quickly. I was using the Bloodstone Chalice buff for my Drain Health, to regenerate Magicka too. 



    The Warlock is all about "Knowledge at any cost", but don't be fooled, the knowledge isn't neccessarily for him. It is for Orsinium, for the House of Orsimer Glories. His higher good. Every one of the Warlock's moves is measured by how much it can help Orsinium.

    He is a book collector foremost, so one of his primary goals is to go out there into that big world and look for any book that could be valuable. Unique books and such, which means Skill Books are the top priority for him. Also, any books on Orcs, of course.

    Second most important things are artifacts. It doesn't matter whether they are of Daedric, Aedric or mundane origin. Collecting all Daedric artifacts, Auriel's Bow and Shield, Black Books (Volkihar side), Dwemer artifacts like the Aetherium artifacts or the Dwarven Black Bow of Fate, Dragon Priests' masks. Everything that can be put into a display in the House of Orsimer Glories.

    As you surely noticed, he isn't a Dragonborn, I haven't even started the Main Quest and really enjoyed another playthrough without dragons. It never ceases to amaze me how interesting the playthrough can be without dragons, without the Civil War, especially the Solstheim part of the playthrough. Some books are inacessible, of course, but that doesn't stop the Warlock from trying to find them all.


    And that's it. Another build goes into my collection and finally another Orc, and one that is just a pure badass librarian.

    I would like to thanks Lissette for help with the perkspreads and banners, as well as for her neverending support.

    Same goes for Phil, who is the best guy to chat with around here and I have to thank him for helping me when I was let down by that stupid glitch that isn't working.

    And lastly, thank you to everyone who commented in Workshop on this build (long time ago).

    There is also a profile tied to this build, used back when we were running a Roleplay Event. Urzus the Librarian


  • Member
    November 14, 2016

    A combination between a warlock and a death knight? Yes! Yes! Yes! Awesome Karves! I especially like the skill pictures. Nice job!

  • November 14, 2016

    Noodles said:

    A combination between a warlock and a death knight? Yes! Yes! Yes! Awesome Karves! I especially like the skill pictures. Nice job!

    If Death Knight would be wearing robes then yes :D Gosh, really miss Bound Armor from previous games. Would aboslutely fit this guy. Thanks, mate. And yeah, those skill icons gave me hard times, but they are absolutely badass. :)

  • Member
    November 14, 2016

    Wow, what a page to look at! This has come a long way from when I last saw it but even then I was impressed by your use of skill book quotes to emphasise your skills. The icons you use are also brilliant. I don't know where you keep finding such great art but you never fail to dig something Orsome up.

    The backstory remains one of my favourites as it is very lore connected and works just so beautifully. Any chance you could link to your RP Profile too?

    Excellent work Karver, The Warlock of Orsinium manages to be a not-overpowerd powerhouse of a build with an approach to combat which no doubt keeps the build interesting and tactical no matter what enemy you face, by Trinimac's Blade!

  • November 14, 2016

    Phil said:

    Wow, what a page to look at! This has come a long way from when I last saw it but even then I was impressed by your use of skill book quotes to emphasise your skills. The icons you use are also brilliant. I don't know where you keep finding such great art but you never fail to dig something Orsome up.

    The backstory remains one of my favourites as it is very lore connected and works just so beautifully. Any chance you could link to your RP Profile too?

    Excellent work Karver, The Warlock of Orsinium manages to be a not-overpowerd powerhouse of a build with an approach to combat which no doubt keeps the build interesting and tactical no matter what enemy you face, by Trinimac's Blade!

    Ha, thank you, mate. And yes, I should probably link it to the profile, right? Have to fix the pictures in there first though... :D

  • Member
    November 14, 2016

    The art on this is amazing. And as a long time WoW player, I love all the pictures of Gul'dan used in here too. And conceptually, this is a fantastic build. Diverse playstyles to keep it from getting boring are really a big thing with me (cause I get bored easily and reroll a *lot* lol). Also? HE'S A FRICKIN ORC. So much win happening in here. My only real complaint (and a minor one, at that) is that the font on the perk spread picture is a bit difficult to read. Zooming in on the picture helps a lot, so it really is a minor issue, but something I felt I should point out anyway. 


    Regardless of all that, this still gets a like from me. Excellent stuff.

  • November 14, 2016

    Ah, I was wondering about the perkspread, if it´s readable. I kinda got used to it, but I see what you mean. I made the picture little bit larger, so it should be easier to read it now. :)

    And YES! Frickin Orc! As for the diverse playstyles...that´s precisely what I enjoyed about this char the most. So many roles this guy can fill, so every combat isn´t never same because of the versatility. 

    Thank you for your words, mate. Glad you like it. Let´s hope the other build will be as good, shall we? :)


  • Member
    November 14, 2016
    Simply amazing Karver, just as I expected. I can't see the full extent of the presentation, as I'm on mobile, but I'm sure it looks great. It's certainly an amazing read and I love builds that give a lot of options and different roles to fill. Great work!
  • November 14, 2016

    Blooded said: Simply amazing Karver, just as I expected. I can't see the full extent of the presentation, as I'm on mobile, but I'm sure it looks great. It's certainly an amazing read and I love builds that give a lot of options and different roles to fill. Great work!

    Thank you very much, Blooded. Looking forward to your Stag. I´m expecting it to be amazing none the less. :)

  • Member
    November 14, 2016

    Uh Karver there isn't meant to be a space between Event:Against or Rank:Event :P