Skyrim Special Edition

File information

Last updated

Original upload

Created by

Teneb Kel

Uploaded by


Virus scan

Safe to use

About this mod

Adds "shadow" themed spells and perks to Skyrim. These spells are based around drains, damage-over-time and debuff effects.

Permissions and credits
  • Ukrainian
  • Spanish
  • Russian
  • Italian
  • German
  • French


When I play mages in Skyrim I always miss more darker spells, strong drains and DoTs. The fire/frost/shock elements are cool, yet I prefer something of an evil shady warlocky playstyle. Sure, we do have the Conjuration school, it looks shadowy enough, but it is used to... well, conjure, not damage. So...

This mod adds "shadow" themed destruction/illusion spells and perks to Skyrim. These spells are based around drains, damage-over-time and debuff effects.

I've been drawing inspiration mostly from SWTOR Madness Sorcerer/Hatred Assassin, as you can notice in the names of some of the spells :)

You may grab the Oldrim version here.

  • 8 Destruction, 9 Alteration, 2 Illusion and 3 Conjuration spells featuring damage over time effects, curses ands drains.
  • 2 shadow weapon enchantments.
  • New staves and scrolls with the shadow spells.
  • The spells are upgraded as you increase your Destruction skill. The channeling drain spell is now always useful!
  • Unique mechanics for each spell (well, almost). Shadowbolt is more powerful the darker your environment is, and Crushing Darkness has a chance to stagger the target each tick.
  • The spells, staves and scrolls are safely integrated into leveled lists by a script.

Exact spell damage values and magicka costs can be found here.

Novice channeling spell. Upgraded when Destruction reaches 25, 50 and 75.
Deals shadow damage and stacks up to 4 times.

Drain Soul
Novice channeling spell. Upgraded when Destruction reaches 25, 50 and 75.
Deals shadow damage to a target and drains it's health. Drain component does not work on undead, mechanisms, daedra and dragons. Has a chance to trap the target's soul.

Apprentice spell. Upgraded when Destruction reaches 50 and 75.
Deals shadow damage instantly. Damage can be increased by the lack of light around the caster.
If the light level is greater than 100 units, the damage is unchanged. If the light level is less than 100 units, the damage is increased up to 60% at light level 0.

Crushing Darkness
Adept damage-over-time spell. Upgraded when Destruction reaches 75. No dual casting.
Summons a dark cloud around a target that will damage it for 18 seconds. Each tick may stagger the target. Has a chance to trap the target's soul.

Creeping Terror
Expert damage-over-time spell. No dual casting.
Terrifies a target, paralyzing it for 2 seconds and dealing shadow damage over time. May demoralize and even instantly slay the target.
If the target is your level or up to 5 levels lower than you and has less than 35% of health, it has a chance to be instantly slain.
If the target is more than 5 levels lower than you, it has a chance to be instantly slain.

Expert concentration spell. No dual casting.
Pulls and chokes a target, dealing massive damage over time.

Consuming Shadows
Expert channeling spell.
Creates shadowy patches on the ground that damage everyone who passes through them. If an opponent dies on a patch, his soul will be trapped.

Shadow Rend
Master spell.
Causes a shadowy explosion around the caster, damaging everyone in a 60 yard radius, reducing their magic resistance and afflicting them with a damage-over-time effect for 15 seconds.

Curse of Exhaustion
Apprentice spell. Upgraded by a perk. No dual casting.
Weakens an opponent, reducing it's movement speed and physical attack damage for 15 seconds.

Life Tap
Apprentice spell.
Converts 20% of caster's health to 40% of missing magicka. Can and will kill the caster if he has less than 20% health.

Shadow Enchantments
Apprentice passive ability.Grants an ability to empower your weapons with shadow enchantments (Sear and Hex).

Curse of Fragility
Adept spell. Upgraded by a perk. No dual casting.
Weakens an opponent, reducing it's armor rating and physical attack damage for 15 seconds.

Adept spell.
Decreases the caster's chance to be detected while sneaking and reduces damage taken.
Shadow damage heals the caster for 10% damage dealt. In turn increases Restoration spells cost by 75%. Lasts for 5 minutes. Drains 80% of the caster's max magicka when cast.

Adept spell.An ability to see in darkness. Can be toggled on and off. Drains 80% of the caster's max magicka when cast.

Curse of Decay
Expert spell. No dual casting.
Weakens an opponent, stopping it's regeneration rates for 15 seconds.

Withering Aura
Adept cloak spell. No dual casting.
Weakens opponents around the caster, reducing their movement speed, physical attack damage, armor rating, magic resistance and regeneration rates (but not as high as the specialized curses do).

Dark Sun
Master power. Requires Dawnguard DLC.
Creates a black stellar object in the sky which absorbs sunlight for 15 minutes. You are harder to detect and your Shadowbolt is fully empowered. Cannot be used indoors.
Mind Blast
Adept spell. No dual casting.
Completely disables the target's mind for some time. Cannot be used in combat.

Mind Control
Master spell. No dual casting.
Assumes control of the target's mind for some time. Mind controlled target can move and attack, but cannot use spells. Caster is made invisible and stealthed for the duration of the effect. Cannot mind control essential NPCs. Mind link can be interrupted by the caster at any time.

Conjure Shadow Atronach
Apprentice spell. Upgraded when Conjuration reaches 50 and 75.
Conjures a Shadow Atronach for 1 minute. Shadow Atronach is 30% resistant to physical and magic damage and casts Shadowbolts.

Conjure Darkness
Adept spell.
Envelops the caster with shadows that reduce detection chances and fully empower the Shadowbolt spell. Has as cooldown and dispels itself if the environment is too bright. Cannot be used outdoors.

Conjure Umbra' Keth
Master spell.
Conjures Umbra' Keth, the invulnerable Shadow of Conflict, to maul your enemies.

Weapon enchantment.
Deals shadow damage and drains 25% of the damage done as health.

Weapon enchantment.
Deals shadow damage and has a 15% chance to apply a random shadow curse (the applied curse power is modified by the Hex Master perk).

To learn the enchantments you must get the Shadow Enchantments ability.

You may find Dark Arts tomes while exploring the most dangerous dungeons and ruins. When read, these tomes will add a permanent ability which acts like a perk and empowers one (or more) of your shadow spells. You can see all active Dark Arts in your Active Buffs tab in magic UI. Here's a list of all the tomes and their locations:

Dark Arts: Shadow Mastery
There are two tomes in the world.
Found inside Ansilvund Burial Chambers and Forelhost Refectory.
Increases the damage done by your Destruction shadow spells by 25%.

Dark Arts: Essence Drain
Found inside Yngvild Throne Room.
Drain Soul has a chance to replenish your magicka by absorbing it from the target.

Dark Arts: Agony
Found inside Blind Cliff Bastion.
Sear stacks 5 times instead of 4.

Dark Arts: Despair
Found inside Valthume Catacombs.
Shadowbolt, Crushing Darkness and Shadow Rend have a chance to demoralize your target.
Max fearable target level depends on anything that increases your destruction and/or shadow spell damage (especially Dark Arts perk). Illusion tree perks DO NOT modify it (still cannot figure why, I do use the correct keywords).

Dark Arts: Torment
Found inside Forsaken Crypt.
Your shadow curses last twice as long.

Dark Arts: Curse Mastery
Found inside Vokun's Throne Room.
Your Curse of Exhaustion and Curse of Fragility are replaced by more powerful and more expensive expert versions.

Dark Arts: Mind Shattering
Found inside Potema's Sanctum.
Your Mind Blast and Mind Control spells work on higher level targets and last 50% longer.

Scroll of Shadowbolt (Apprentice, Adept and Expert)
Scroll of Crushing Darkness (Adept and Expert)
Scroll of Shadow Rend
Scroll of Exhaustion
Scroll of Fragility
Scroll of Decay
Scroll of Shadowform
Scroll of Shadow Atronach
Scroll of Darkness
Scroll of Umbra' Keth

Staff of Searing (Apprentice, Adept and Expert)
Staff of Soul Siphoning (Apprentice, Adept and Expert)
Staff of Shadowbolts (Apprentice, Adept and Expert)
Staff of Crushing Darkness (Adept and Expert)
Staff of Consuming Shadows
Staff of Choking
Staff of Exhaustion (Apprentice and Expert)
Staff of Fragility (Adept and Expert)
Staff of Decay

Your perk bonuses do apply on spells casted by a staff.

You may also install the Dragonborn Staff Crafting patch to be able to craft these staves at the Dragonborn staff enchanter. The dependency is, of course, the Dragonborn DLC.

Your low-level shadow spells now won't be completely useless as you progress through the game. Almost all of the spells upgrade themselves to Expert either by perks or by you reaching specific Destruction skill checkpoints (25, 50, 75 skill levels).The spells that are upgraded automatically:
  • Sear (25, 50, 75)
  • Drain Soul (25, 50, 75)
  • Shadowbolt (50, 75)
  • Crushing Darkness (75)
  • Conjure Shadow Atronach (50, 75)

The spells that are upgraded via perks:
  • Curse of Exhaustion
  • Curse of Fragility

When a spell is upgraded it's old version gets removed and the upgraded version is immediately added to your spell book. You may need to reassign your keybinds, because the upgraded spell is considered "new".
The spells won't suddenly upgrade in combat.


Just use the "Download with manager" button and then follow the installer steps.

Use NMM or delete everything that starts with "ShadowSpellPackage" from your Skyrim/Data dir. The update manager scripts and ticking dot scripts will kill themselves next time you load the game and won't bother you.

Leveled lists are populated via a script, so the spells, spell books, staves and scrolls should be compatible with everything around.

Version 5 does not make any changes to the perk trees, so there is no need to use compatibility patches anymore.

Q: Can you create a version without the SKSE dependency / a version for consoles?
A: Nope. Oh, I've tried to rescript everything to work without the SKSE and failed. Too many irreplaceable functions. I usually try to script nice little things - like the cast particle removal when you cast Shadow Rend and enter the first person camera mode. The particles clutter the screen a lot and I track the camera state and remove them. And that script uses SKSE methods. So it's basically beautiful and depends on SKSE, or ugly and does not. Obviously I don't want the mod to be ugly.

Q: Is this compatible with X?
A: It should be.

Q: Your mod is so OP when used with Z!
A: *sigh* Yeah it is. I cannot make my mod balanced around EVERY overhaul mod that changes your game. My damage values and magicka costs are based purely on vanilla spells.

Q: Can you create a spell that does Y?
A: Most likely no. I've implemented all I wanted and I think this spell package is complete. Besides, I don't have much time to contribute to Skyrim lately.

Q: I've found a bug. Will you fix it?
A: Of course I will! Or, at least, I will try. Post a comment or a bug issue and I will look into it ASAP.

Version 2.7 adds two new spells: Mind Blast and Mind Control. The ideas came from here: MindMaster illusion spell pack. I've "reinvented" the scripts (because there were no sources, only compiled data) and have rewritten those spells from scratch.
While Mind Blast is functionally simple (target is disabled for N seconds, no combat usage), Mind Control is much more complex. Here is a small FAQ:

 I cannot use the target's magic while mind controlling. Why?
A: You may only use your target's equipped weapon(s) or fists. You may not sprint and magic (even equipped) cannot be cast. So yes, you cannot mind control mages to kill their comrades. I don't know why the engine allows me to fire weapon swing anims on attack button press, but not magic. Maybe eventually I'll find out.

Q: I cannot attack while mind controlling an animal. Why?
A: See the previous QA. It's the same problem - animal attack is not a "weapon swing" event and cannot be automatically fired on attack. I guess.

Q: Why I am staggered when I try to jump?
A: Jump animation is (again!) not properly working on NPCs. They start to float above the ground. There's no way to stop an animation, but it can be overriden with another one. IdleStop anims are not interrupting the jump anim, but stagger anim does.

Q: I cannot mind control an NPC, but his level is lower than the Mind Control magnitude. What the hell?
A: You may not mind control essential characters.
Well, it's disabled because it may cause permanent loyalty cascades. Example: Irileth is mind controlled and attacks Balgruuf. Balgruuf is pissed and strikes back. Irileth is no longer mind controlled, but is pissed about Balgruuf attacking her and strikes back too. Bam, loyalty cascade. They attack each other endlessly because they do not know why the heck they are being attacked and defend themselves.
And being able to mind control aforementioned Balgruuf or Ulfric or Tullius is damn OP. They are supposed to have strong wills. Go throw some dumb bandit plunderers off a cliff.

Q: Why is the camera always in third person while mind controlling? Make it first person please!
A: No way. First person camera view cannot follow a target, it becomes stuck in your character because of the engine limitations. The camera state is stored in a variable, then switches to third person, follows a target, then returns back to the saved state when the effect ends.