Skyrim Mods That Completely Change the Game

Skyrim was released nearly ten years ago. While the developers at Bethesda have made sure to improve the game incrementally through re-releases, Skyrim has also grown thanks to the efforts of what is likely the largest modding community in the industry. Whether players just want to make the game prettier, go fishing, or are curious how draugr stack up to a lightsaber, there are thousands of mods available for just about anything players could imagine.

The game eventually supported mods on Xbox One and PlayStation 4 through Skyrim: Special Edition, and the upcoming Skyrim: Anniversary Edition will include 500 mods in the game's files. However, some of the most exciting mods for Skyrim are ones that transform the game and offer something entirely new for fans to experience. There are a lot of options that players have for mods that transform the experience of playing Skyrim, but there are some that rise above the rest and are good enough that they could have been official content by Bethesda itself.

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Helgen Reborn

The introduction of Skyrim has become an iconic sequence. However, many players may find it a bit weird that the city of Helgen is never rebuilt after the dragon attack, and it is just left as a blank space on the map that players don't have a reason to return to. Helgen Reborn addresses this by introducing an entirely new questline that rebuilds the city. It includes dungeons, full voice acting, a new player home, and players can even decide which of Skyrim's factions Helgen ends up siding with.

Phenderix Magic World

Phenderix Magic World is a must-download mod for any players who enjoy wielding magic in Skyrim but wish there were more options to choose from. The mod includes 170 new spells that can also be mixed and combined to create crazy abilities. It also introduces a new player home, quest, region, and gear that is perfect for mages in Skyrim. The mod does include some non-lore friendly descriptions and references throughout, but if that is a deal breaker there is also a patch available that removes them.

Enderal: The Shards of Order

Enderal is one of the biggest mods available for Skyrim, and it is an entirely original game that has been built using Skyrim's engine and assets. The game is so big that it even received its very own expansion and a release on Steam. The game also changes Skyrim's leveling and character-building system to be a bit more traditional, on top of having an entirely new world, lore, and story for players to experience in either English or German.

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Interesting NPCs

Interesting NPCs overhauls Skyrim's population of AI NPCs to help the game feel more alive and varied. It adds more than 250 fully realized NPCs that each have their own personalities, voiced lines, schedules, and quests. Some of them can also be recruited as followers married by the player. Some of the followers have well over 1,000 lines of dialogue recorded, and will comment on every major quest and interaction in the game. The mod is great for adding some new character to the game, and its followers are often better than even Skyrim's best followers.

Immersive Creatures

While playing through Skyrim, players kill enough Draugr, trolls, and wolves to make them never want to see a single one ever again. For players looking for more variety, Immersive Creatures is a great mod that adds dozens of new creatures and variants to the game. The mod completely changes how it feels to go exploring in Skyrim, and has some monsters that are very exciting to see in Skyrim. It does not include any cheese mammoths, but Skyrim has a mod for that too just in case.

Wildcat and Smilodon

Wildcat and Smilodon are two versions of the same mod that completely overhaul the game's combat system, with Wildcat working for the original Skyrim and Smilodon for the Special Edition. They are some of the best combat mods for Skyrim, and make everything more deadly and tense. Weapons deal more damage, players and enemies can perform more moves, and it adds attacks of opportunity to punish players who aren't careful. The mods can also be tweaked via an in-game menu, so players can tailor the mods for the exact experience they are looking for.


Ordinator is a mod that completely changes Skyrim's perk system to include more options. The mod introduces a total of 469 new perks fto unlock, and attempts to make more builds in Skyrim viable while also introducing unique ways to play. The mod is a great option for any fans who have played Skyrim a lot and are looking for something new to spice the game up, or for players who just want a more detailed levelling system for their next playthrough. The mod also removes some of Skyrim's most worthless perks so players know every skill point they spend will be useful.


Frostfall is one of the most comprehensive survival mods for Skyrim. Not only does it introduce having to manage hunger, thirst, and sleep, but it also includes a full camping system, temperature control, and a lot of other smaller features that can be tweaked and adjusted by the player. The mod can make the game extremely challenging, but it also adds some more depth to Skyrim and forces players to interact with its systems more to ensure their character is well cared for.

Skyrim: Anniversary Edition releases for PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S on November 11, 2021.

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