Purchase Game

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim


Scott Peers

Understanding Perk Points in Skyrim

How to Use Perk Points Effectively

As mentioned earlier, perks are the real substance of character customization, due to the diversity of build types that they offer with each perk point invested in a particular skill. The overall skill level of a specific skill improves the general effectiveness of that skill, but perks offer more in terms of what you can actually do with a skill. For example, investing perks in one-handed weapons provides additional special power attacks with them, and increased effectiveness with a specific weapon, such as adding a bleeding effect to axes.

Your skill level determines what perks you can buy in each skill tree, and since increasing your skill level increases your character level, you’ll have more perks to distribute over time. The more powerful perks are generally higher on the perk tree, while the perks lower on the tree are focused more on improving general effectiveness of the skill. You’ll gain one perk point per level, and after you’ve spent a perk the only way to get it back is by maxing the skill level of a particular skill, then making it legendary to reset the skill level to 15. Keep this in mind when you invest perk points, and do so only after careful consideration of the build you’re aiming for. There’s no need to invest perks as soon as you earn them, so you might want to consider saving them as you level up and learn more about what playstyle you’re likely to enjoy most.

Recommended Skill Perks

Although it’s a good idea to create a character which is adept in most skills, you might want to focus on some above others. You can see our Skills guide for an overview of the basics, along with the following useful tips for each skill, including recommended perks:

(1 of 2) Some perks can be invested in multiple times (usually up to 5) to increase the value of the perk effect.

Some perks can be invested in multiple times (usually up to 5) to increase the value of the perk effect. (left), You’ll gain access to new perks for each skill as you invest in specific skill trees. (right)


User profile pic
Welcome Guest

Guide Information

  • Publisher
    Bethesda Softworks
  • Platforms
    PC, PS3, PS4, Switch, XB 360, XB One
  • Genre
    Action RPG
  • Guide Release
    31 May 2012
  • Last Updated
    19 October 2021
    Version History
  • Guide Author
    Greg Wright

Share this free guide:

Skyrim is the homeland of the Nords, a fierce and proud warrior people who are used to the bitter cold and mountanous terrain that mark the lands of Skyrim. Wracked by civil war, and threatened by the return of the legendary dragons, Skyrim faces its darkest hour. You must make sense of this maelstrom, explore the frozen tundra and bring hope to the people. The future of Skyrim, even the Empire itself, hangs in the balance as they wait for the prophesized Dragonborn to come; a hero born with the power of The Voice, and the only one who can stand amongst the dragons. You are that Dragonborn.

Version 1.2

  • Introduction to the Races.
  • How to complete every storyline quest.
  • Where to find and conquer every side-mission.
  • Location of every powerful Dragonwall.
  • Search out and defeat every Dragon.
  • How to find hidden, powerful weapons.
  • Over 200 captioned screenshots provide even more help.
  • Dragonborn DLC covered in full.
  • Dawnguard DLC covered in full.
  • Screenshots for the major side-missions.
  • Achievements/Trophy descriptions (includes all 3 DLC packs).
  • Character Creation guide.

Get a Gamer Guides Premium account: