Skyrim Special Edition

About this mod

Years in the making, Arcanum is a massive spell mod that aims to combine unique gameplay with visual effects of a quality never attempted before in Skyrim. With 200 spells complete, 300+ spells planned, and inspired by everything from Dragon's Dogma to Planescape, Arcanum may be the most ambitious magic mod ever made.

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Conjuration Update 4.0.1


Introduces a new school of magic, Conjuration. Manipulate your summons in ways never before thought possible, and unleash a number of new and creative builds. 

Introduction






Have you ever downloaded an exciting spell mod full of creative and interesting spells - only to find yourself spamming fireballs over and over again anyways? Or wished that all the amazing visuals from a mod like Colorful magic were actually incorporated into something lore-friendly and balanced?

Too often in Skyrim, magic turns into a chore. A finger-tapping exercise of using the same spells over and over again, with no room for creative combos or adaptation. Arcanum seeks to change that. Rather than being just a collection of overpowered lightning bolts, Arcanum is designed to be a journey of magical experimentation. Different schools of magic, and different styles within those schools, have been given unique identities and gameplay mechanics, that lend way to creative combos and synergy. As a mage player myself, the mod is made with full awareness of other popular magic mods in mind, and intended to be a lynchpin that can breathe new life into older spell mods, too. 

And, after years of experimentation, practice, and communication with some of the most prolific and talented artists and NIF wizards out there, Arcanum has some of the most unique and advanced visual effects of any Skyrim mod out there. Fully animated spinning tornadoes, giant crashing meteors and the ability to summon stars at will are only a handful of the powers at your disposal. Of course, powerful magic isn't easy - and many of these spells require arcane rituals or other setup to use effectively. It's up to you to figure out how to make the most of these spells. 



If you enjoy my mods, please consider supporting me on Patreon!


And Join my discord if you wanna offer feedback or suggestions! 

https://discord.gg/9JUWNkr


Destruction

When designing the destruction spells, I split the school into three distinct styles along the elements. Each has a different playstyle, strengths, weaknesses, and players may choose either to focus and go all in on one element, or use the others to help mitigate their element's weaknesses. All playstyles will be rewarded with unique combos and payoffs. 

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Restoration

How many spell mods have had restoration spells as just a bunch of uninventive heals and plague spells? Arcanum's take on restoration is different. You won't find any overpowered "Fast Healings" in here. God knows there's enough out there - and the vanilla spells aren't bad for healing yourself. No, Restoration in Arcanum takes a different approach. Turn your allies into gods as a battle cleric, protect the weak by sacrificing your own life, or become a dark doctor that turns healing itself into harm. To help guide my design, I divided Restoration into three sub-categories

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Illusion

Illusion always gets the short end of the stick in Vanilla, doesn't it? Fear, Frenzy, and Calm spells simply don't scale all that well, do very little against bosses or dragons or difficult enemies, and it's almost always something you ignore, or take for the occasional utility. Spell mods like Apocalypse go out of their way to ignore vanilla mechanics, and perk mods like Ordinator turn it into a mishmash of random stuff. I say, no more. There's real potential in Illusion. Arcanum gives renewed purpose to vanilla illusion spells with special synergies, and really lets you fulfill that fantasy of playing as a deadly, deceitful, mind mage. There's also plenty of spells that support spellthief, spellsword, and even magicka archer playstyles, and some mage characters might even find it more useful to spec into illusion than restoration, since it provides a lot of support functions and a teeny amount of healing. 

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Conjuration

With the conjuration update, I aimed to tackle a few features I thought were really bad about Conjuration in the base game, and in a lot of other mods I saw. Necromancy is historically underpowered, summons are quite boring and tend to involve little to no activity from the player, and bound weapons and soul trapping seem isolated in their own corner, without anything linking them to the rest of the school. With a bevy of powerful summons in the base game AND other mods, instead, Arcanum Conjuration aims to offer more utility and incentivizes the player not to hide in a corner while their summon does the work.

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Spell List



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Restoration

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Illusion

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Conjuration

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How to Obtain

Most of the spells contained in this mod can be bought from vendors, and are seamlessly integrated into the leveled lists of magic merchants. 

Some spells can only be obtained through mini-quests and custom dungeons. I like leaving those a little secret, and I prefer you to go through blind but I'll upload a walkthrough on my Patreon. 

Reformulated Spells and Spell Crafting



Reformulated spells are a form of spell crafting I mostly envisioned to make more use out of the assets I developed, but quickly grew into something unique, and one of the most beloved features of Arcanum. It's a form of combining spell effects and visuals to create spells that are a fusion of other spells. This number is gradually growing, but can be considered a school in and of itself. Recent patches have made it more accessible at lower levels, so don't be afraid to buy some extra tomes and reformulate!

There are multiple stations spread out through skyrim, in Winterhold, in Whiterun, etc. Some locations may conflict with city overhaul mods and require a patch.

Compatibility

Arcanum should play nice with all other spell mods, perk overhauls, etc. Its specifically designed to work with things like spell charging, chaining, etc, or any other magic modifications you have installed. I might make my own perk mod one day, but that's off in the distance and would be a separate mod. 

Note that you shouldn't use mods to add spells directly from the mod. Add the spell tomes instead if you want to cheat. Not every spell is castable and 90% of the spells in the mod files aren't used, they're placeholders or designed to trigger some backend stuff that makes the real spells function. 


Special Thanks

To billyro, to mikhail, and so many others for their help with resources. 
To Enaisaion for advice, and elysses for help with brainstorming nif structure
To Trainwiz, for his always relevant advice and scripting help.
To po3, for his excellent Rune meshes, and obsidian dawn for his textures
To Ricky from discord, who's been a great help with these screenshots. 

And numerous others.