The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Character Building Guide: Alteration

With so many customization option given by the game, creating your character is not going to be too hard. We have taken a good look at each of the races available and understood that each one of them comes with its own strengths and weaknesses: some are better suited at being warriors while others are better at magic or stealth.

In creating your character and getting him or her ready for battle and adventure you’ll probably need some good understanding on how skills work. Skills determine your proficiency at everything that can be done in the world of Skyrim. Unlike previous The Elder Scrolls game, skills aren’t determined by the character class: the specialization of skills comes with the Perks system.

All Skills improve depending on the action you do: improving some of them can be somewhat tedious. There are other ways to improve skills without having to repeat some actions over and over: you can improve them by getting your hand on a Skill Book or find some Trainers who will help you improve specific skills.

Trainers can only train you five times per level: to get them to train you again you will have to raise you level. This limit doesn’t apply to a single trainer but to all: if you have already trained three times with a single trainer, you can only train two more times with another trainer. To start training again you will have to level up.

Some followers will also be able to train you: this actually comes with an advantage since you can get your money back by going through their inventory.

There’s also another trick to earn some good XP if you have the horse Shadowmere: this horse cannot be damaged by magic, direct and ranged attacks. Keep attacking him to earn some easy XP.


Alteration magic is related to Thaumaturgy, which deals with transmutation and transformation of matter and energy. The skill levels related to Alternation are all aimed towards improving your spells included in the category, making them way more effective as well allowing you to cast them spending less magicka than usual

Alteration Perks

  • Novice Alteration

Cast Novice level Alteration spells for half magicka.

  • Alteration Dual Casting
  • 20

Dual casting an Alteration spell overcharges the effects into an even more powerful version.

  • Apprentice Alteration
  • 25

Cast Apprentice level Alteration spells for half magicka.

  • Mage Armor
  • 30

Protection spells like Stoneflesh are twice as strong if not wearing armor.

  • Magic Resistance
  • 30

Blocks 10% of a spell’s effects.

  • Adept Alteration
  • 50

Cast Adept level Alteration spells for half magicka.


  • Stability
  • 70

Alteration spells have greater duration.

  • Expert Alteration
  • 75

Cast Expert level Alteration spells for half magicka.

  • Atronach
  • 100

Absorb 30% of the magicka of any spells that hit you.

  • Master Alteration
  • 100

Cast Master level Alteration spells for half magicka.

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