Skyrim's Daedric artifacts contain some of the most formidable enchantments in the game, but they aren't the only ones that can pack a unique punch. Buried treasures, relics of gods and long-dead wizards, sinister magics perhaps best forgotten — Skyrim's nooks and crannies are home to all sorts of powerful artifacts that bear no connection to the denizens of Oblivion.
Power, style, and flair can be found in a number of sources. From quest rewards to cleverly hidden weapons, these ten one-of-a-kind pieces of gear prove there's no need to bargain with a Daedric lord to gain an extra edge in battle.
10 Gloves of the Pugilist
These humble-looking fur gauntlets are found in the possession of a hostile lowlife named Gian the Fist, who makes his home in Riften's Ratway. Claim them by looting his body, and equip them to gain 10 additional points of damage to unarmed attacks.
Unlike most items on this list, the Gloves of the Pugilist can be disenchanted, allowing the player to apply Fortify Unarmed to other items. This enchantment is incredibly useful for Khajiit, whose claws give them a racial bonus to unarmed attacks.
This one-of-a-kind Akaviri katana deals 20-40 extra points of damage to dragons and shock damage to others. Available early on in the Blades' Sky Haven Temple, it's a godsend for players looking for an extra edge against the game's main monsters.
Considering how frequently dragons spawn and the benefits of slaying them, Dragonbane is indispensable. Be warned, however, that once Delphine asks the player to kill Paarthunax, all items in Sky Haven Temple will be considered stolen until the deed is done.
8 Staff of Magnus
This mysterious staff remains useful long after finishing the College of Winterhold questline. Its enchantment drains targets of Magicka and, when they're out of that, health. It's a powerful tool for fighting high-level mages, incapacitating them quickly.
The Staff of Magnus is found in Labyrinthian during its titular quest and requires the defeat of Dragon Priest Morokei. The fight is especially tough for mages since the Staff is weaponized against the player. However, it's worth it to foil the Thalmor plot and obtain the Staff of Magnus.
7 Auriel's Shield
Deep within the Forgotten Vale, this long-lost shield has been picked up by a Falmer Warmonger. Defeat him, and the enchantment that once belonged to a god is in the player's hands.
Reaching the shield's location requires the Ruby Paragon, which is guarded by a Frost Giant; however, the reward is worth the bruises. Auriel's shield stores the energy of each attack it blocks, which the player can release with a Power Bash. At maximum charge, this effect sends enemies flying just like a three-word Unrelenting Force shout.
A unique Dwarven bow found in the ruin of Arkngthamz, Zephyr's innate enchantment allows it to fire arrows faster than any other bow in the game. It's one of the best tools an archer can have in their arsenal and is especially formidable when used with high-damage or poisoned arrows.
The only real downside is how quickly the player can run out of arrows. However, the Archery perk Hunter's Discipline helps offset this, allowing players to reclaim twice as many arrows from their kills.
5 Ahzidal's Armor
Found during the quest "Unearthed," Ahzidal's relics boast fearsome enchantments. The chest piece can paralyze attackers; the boots grant waterwalking. The gauntlets allow wards to absorb Magicka (though they decrease the wards' efficacy); the helm allows Conjuration and Rune spells to be cast at greater range. The Ring of Arcana grants two new Destruction spells, and the Ring of Necromancy causes reanimated thralls to explode like icy grenades when they take damage.
In addition to their unique effects, wearing any four of the relics at once grants a 10-point increase to Enchanting.
4 The Aetherial Crown
Deep beneath the Ruins of Bthalft lies the Aetherium Forge, a mysterious Dwemer site used to craft magical items out of the aetherium crystals. During the quest "Lost to the Ages," the player can choose to craft one of three items here; of the available options, this circlet is arguably the most useful.
It allows the player to retain two Standing Stone effects at once. From lightning-fast leveling to invisibility to long-range damaging paralysis, this ability has the potential to be absolutely game-breaking.
Individually, the pieces of this set grant waterbreathing, extra stamina, carrying capacity, and duel-wielding damage — each of which increases with each Deathbrand piece worn. When the entire set is worn together, it grants a massive armor bonus, making it a must-have for rogues or other light-armored characters.
Finding the set is a bit of a scavenger hunt, as it requires the player to roam all over Solstheim following treasure maps. However, it's a fun way to explore, and the reward is well worth it.
2 Auriel's Bow
Central to Dawnguard's main quest, this hallowed bow inflicts sun damage on all enemies and triples this effect on undead targets. Sun damage itself is not a unique effect; however, the true power of Auriel's Bow comes from Sunhallowed or Bloodcursed arrows.
Fired at the undead, Sunhallowed arrows not only cause direct sun damage but also a small blast; when fired at the sun, beams of burning sunlight to rain down on foes. Bloodcursed arrows, meanwhile, blot out the sun for a day, an invaluable effect for vampires.
This unique scimitar can be tricky to find, but it's worth it. Lodged into the tip of the Katariah ship's bow, Windshear can only be found during and after the final Dark Brotherhood quest, "Hail Sithis!"
Windshear's enchantment is incredibly useful for buying time in a tough battle. Its bashing attacks have a chance to knock down enemies, who take several seconds to get up; additionally, normal attacks are guaranteed to stagger their targets. These effects give players a window to heal themselves, or simply wail on enemies.
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