Skyrim Special Edition

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Simon Magus

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SimonMagus616

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About this mod

Adamant is a complete overhaul of Skyrim’s perk trees designed to balance existing skills and add powerful new perks to the game.

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Changelogs
Adamant - A Perk Overhaul 

Adamant is a complete overhaul of Skyrim’s perk trees designed to balance existing skills and add powerful new perks to the game. It thoroughly overhauls the game’s skill trees in order to provide the player with compelling choices and smooth progression from start to finish. While Adamant does increase the total number of perks in the game by a small amount, it avoids bloat, sprawl, and power creep by balancing its selection of perks around Vanilla perk gains. Like many modern perk overhauls, it provides support for popular gameplay styles that are underutilized in the Vanilla game, such as shouts, staves, and unarmed combat.

In order to build off my previous work, Adamant requires Mysticism - A Magic Overhaul to be installed. This allows me to introduce new perks to support spells such as Viperbolt, Reflective Light, and Silence in the most straightforward way possible.

Adamant can be expanded with the optional Hand to Hand - An Adamant Addon that merges Lockpicking and Pickpocket into a single tree, Security, and then adds a standalone Hand to Hand tree. This addon requires Address Library for SKSE Plugins and is compatible with pre-AE and post-AE versions of Skyrim.

Perks 

Alchemy 

Alchemy is the art of brewing magical potions and deadly poisons.

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Notes: 

  • Leveling alchemy generally reduces the tedium involved in using the skill.
  • Crafted poisons and potions will be at the same strength as Vanilla.
  • Potion duration and poison use perks affect looted potions and poisons as well.

Alteration 

The School of Alteration governs the manipulation of the physical world. This skill makes it easier to cast spells like Waterbreathing, Feather, and Stoneflesh. 

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Notes: 

  • Leveling Alteration decreases the cost of Alteration spells by up to 50%.
  • Perks that require you to wear robes still work if you are wearing armored boots, gloves, or helmets. 
  • Wearing robes disqualifies you from benefiting from most Light and Heavy Armor perks.
  • Spells like Oakflesh and Fire Shell last for up to 10 minutes when dual cast, making it easy to manage multiple buffs. 

Archery 

The Archery skill governs the use of bows and arrows to attack from range.

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Notes: 

  • Block while aiming your bow to zoom in, at the cost of Stamina.
  • Critical damage is significantly higher than in Vanilla. It no longer depends on your weapon’s base damage.
  • All archery perks work for crossbows as well.

Block 

The Block skill governs the use of weapons and shields to defend against incoming attacks.

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Notes 

  • Leveling your Block skill increases the effectiveness of blocking and bashing by up to 50%. 
  • Deliverance ensures that shield builds have a strong defensive edge over other playstyles.
  • High-level bash perks allow Block to synergize with offensive skills such as Two-handed.

Conjuration 

The School of Conjuration governs the reanimation of the dead and the summoning of Daedra. This skill makes it easier to cast spells like Bound Sword, Revenant, and Soul Trap. 

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Notes 

  • Leveling Conjuration decreases the cost of Conjuration spells by up to 50%.
  • Summoning perks work on all “summoned” spells, regardless of their type. 
  • Dead Thrall now works like other Reanimation spells. Its unique effects have been migrated to the Conjuration skill tree as perks.
  • Activate reanimated zombies to interact with their inventory, and give them armor and weapons to equip.
  • Power attacks double the effectiveness of Daedric Prey and Haunting Curse.
  • Bound weapons are competitive with other forms of melee damage, including tempered or enchanted weapons.
  • Cultist adds a religion mechanic to Adamant, and gives Conjuration mages access to a set of passives with extremely powerful buffs and debuffs. I will add support for Daedric shrines not present in the Vanilla game in an upcoming mod.

Destruction
 

The School of Destruction governs the harnessing of fire, frost, shock, and other volatile energies. This skill makes it easier to cast Burning Touch, Frost Rune, and Thunderbolt.

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Notes 

  • Leveling Destruction decreases the cost of Destruction spells by up to 50%.
  • Fire spells deal high damage over time and spread fiery hazards across the battlefield.
  • North Wind reduces the Frost Resistance of all nearby enemies by 25/50%. If the enemy has very high Frost Resistance, North Wind automatically doubles in strength. This allows frost mages to remain competitive without overtaking either fire or shock mages. 
  • For the purposes of North Wind, Weakness to Frost counts as a frost spell. Additionally, having an active Frost Cloak also triggers the perk.
  • Static Field compensates for the high Magicka regeneration of most NPCs and allows shock mages to debilitate enemy casters. 

Enchanting 

Enchanting is the art of binding magical spells to weapons and armor. 

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Notes 

  • Weapon enchantments are significantly more balanced than Vanilla. Armor enchantments will be at the same strength as Vanilla.
  • Perks such as Resonance, Conduit, and Soul Siphon reduce the tedium involved in using enchanted items.
  • Channeler makes staves less annoying to use. Scrambled Bugs is recommended for the best experience.

Heavy Armor  

The Heavy Armor skill governs the use of thick, protective armors like Steel, Orcish, Dwarven, Ebony, and Daedric. 

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Notes 

  • Entering combat while wearing three pieces of heavy armor gives Heavy Armor experience.
  • Perks such as Constitution work for both physical damage and magical damage. In addition, Constitution triggers while casting wards.
  • Wearing robes disqualifies you from benefiting from heavy armor perks. However, wearing one piece of light armor does not. 
  • The percentage-based increase to unarmed damage in Fists of Steel affects all sources of unarmed damage.
  • Unarmed blows give Heavy Armor experience, and unarmed damage scales based on your skill in Heavy Armor. 
  • You can combine heavy gauntlets with robes or three pieces of light armor and still benefit from unarmed perks.
  • Unarmed perks require two free hands.

Illusion

The School of Illusion governs the manipulation of the mind. This skill makes it easier to cast spells like Silence, Invisibility, and Night Eye.

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Notes 

  • Leveling Illusion decreases the cost of Illusion spells by up to 50%.
  • Silent Casting has been moved to Sneak, so Destruction mages aren’t required to invest in both Illusion and sneak to benefit from Shadow Casting.
  • Indomitable Will has a high magnitude to account for way that the game distributes enemies through leveled lists. 
  • Dual casting ensures Illusion spells can work against almost any target, as long as players can afford to spend enough Magicka.

Light Armor 

The Light Armor skill governs the use of light, flexible armors like Leather, Scaled, Elven, and Glass.

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Notes 

  • Entering combat while wearing three pieces of light armor gives Light Armor experience.
  • Light armor supports a high mobility, offensive playstyle, differentiating the skill from heavy armor.
  • Wearing robes disqualifies you from benefiting from light armor perks. However, wearing one piece of heavy armor does not. 
  • You can combine heavy gauntlets with three pieces of light armor and still benefit from unarmed perks.

Lockpicking 

Lockpicking is the art of opening locks and finding hidden treasures. Those who are skilled in lockpicking can open more difficult locks with fewer broken lockpicks.

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Notes

  • Lockpicking now functions as a “treasure hunter’s” tree, allowing players to find many new types of loot. 
  • The locksmith perk is more effective than its tooltip suggests, in order to match the strength of the Vanilla perks. 

One-handed 

The One-handed skill governs the use of smaller weapons such as swords, daggers, war axes, and maces.

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Notes 

  • The scaling of the One-handed skill has been increased to 100%, in order to keep tooltip damage consistent with Vanilla.
  • Critical damage is significantly higher than in Vanilla. It no longer depends on your weapon’s base damage.
  • The damage over time dealt by axes stacks, and it and works on all types of enemies, instead of only living targets.
  • Power attacking doubles the critical damage dealt by swords, the damage over time dealt by axes, and the Magicka and Stamina damage dealt by maces. 
  • Many Vanilla enemies will benefit from these perks. 
  • Dual wielding is now slightly faster than Vanilla. 

Pickpocket 

Pickpocketing is the art of stealing from an unsuspecting mark. Those who are skilled in Pickpocketing are more likely to succeed, and can steal items of higher value.

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Notes 

  • Pickpocketing perks are designed to allow the players to stack conditional buffs while leveling, in order to avoid having to save scum. 
  • The pickpocketing cap has been raised to 99%. You still have a tiny chance to fail. Don’t save scum.
  • Seriously, pickpocket is just way more fun to play with if you roleplay instead of save scumming.

Restoration

The School of Restoration governs the manipulation of life energy. This skill makes it easier to cast spells like Fast Healing, Turn Undead, and Poison Bloom.

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Notes 

  • Leveling Restoration decreases the cost of Restoration spells by up to 50%.
  • Repose affects spells such as Regeneration, Healing Light, Attunement, Turn Undead, Poison Cloak, and Stendarr’s Aura. It does not affect the duration of spells like Poison Cloud and Viperbolt.
  • Ward perks allow wards to protect against both physical and magical damage. Wards are competitive with shields on dedicated builds.
  • Plague reduces the Poison Resistance of all nearby enemies by 25/50%. If the enemy has very high Poison Resistance, Plague automatically doubles in strength. This allows poison mages to remain competitive without overtaking Destruction mages. 
  • For the purposes of Plague, Weakness to Poison counts as a poison spell. Additionally, having an active Poison Cloak also triggers the perk.
  • Pilgrim adds a religion mechanic to Adamant, and gives Restoration mages access to a wide array of interesting buffs.

Smithing 

Smithing is the art of forging weapons and armor from raw materials.

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Notes 

  • Leveling smithing no longer automatically contributes to your ability to temper items.
  • Smithing requires more perk investment than Vanilla, but is also more flexible. 
  • Tempered weapons and armor will be the same strength as Vanilla.

Sneak


Sneaking is the art of moving unseen and unheard, and striking from the shadows. Those who are skilled in Sneak can even hide in plain sight.


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Notes 

  • Sneak attacks are roughly equal in power to Vanilla, but require more perk investments.
  • Silent Casting is now a Sneak perk, to support characters who wish to use Shadow Casting without investing in Illusion. 
  • Shadow Casting does not trigger the “sneak attack” notification. 
  • Shadow Warrior has a maximum uptime of 50%. 

Speech

Speech is the art of persuasion and bartering. Those who are skilled in Speech receive better prices from merchants and are more likely to convince others to do as they ask.

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Notes 

  • Supply and Demand and Investor now significantly increase the gold reserves of merchants, to encourage players to engage with Speech perks instead of simply waiting for the merchants to reset their inventories. 
  • You will fail almost all Speech checks without the Persuasion perk. With the Persuasion perk, you will succeed at almost all Speech checks.
  • Due to the way the game handles Shout cooldown, it is relatively easy to reach 0% cooldown when using mods from multiple different authors. I recommend that players exercise discretion when combining Stormcrown with other bonuses. I have balanced Shout perks around a maximum cooldown reduction of 75%. In addition, I have provided a plugin that alters the bonus of the Talos Shrine in order to mitigate this concern. 
  • Shouting in combat gives Speech experience. 

Two-handed 

The Two-handed skill governs the use of larger weapons such as greatswords, battleaxes, and warhammers.

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Notes

  • The scaling of the Two-handed skill has been increased to 100%, in order to keep tooltip damage consistent with Vanilla.
  • Critical damage is significantly higher than in Vanilla. It no longer depends on your weapon’s base damage.
  • The damage over time dealt by battleaxes stacks, and it works on all types of enemies, instead of only living targets.
  • Power attacking doubles the critical damage dealt by greatswords, the damage over time dealt by battleaxes, and the Magicka and Stamina damage dealt by warhammers. 
  • Many Vanilla enemies will benefit from these perks. 

Hand to Hand - An Adamant Addon 

In Adamant, I have done my best support unarmed combat within the Heavy Armor tree, and to give Lockpicking and Pickpocketing useful perks without adding unrelated mechanics to the tree. However, my preferred solution for unarmed combat is Hand to Hand - An Adamant Addon. This mod merges Lockpicking and Pickpocket into a single tree, Security, and then adds a standalone Hand to Hand tree. This addon requires Address Library for SKSE Plugins and is compatible with pre-AE and post-AE versions of Skyrim.

Adamant - Plus Ten Smithing

The Vanilla tempering system frontloads the tempering system's power, causing the player to deal too much damage with too little investment into Smithing. Unfortunately, due to a combination of engine limitations and the constraints of my project, Adamant makes this issue a little worse than Vanilla. To address this, I've added an optional plugin that uses Improvement Names Customized SSE to split the Vanilla tempering system from six tiers into ten. These tiers use traditional RPG-style upgrade named (+1, +2, +3, etc) and each tier adds exactly one point of damage or armor rating to an item (except for chest armor pieces, which gain +2 points of Armor Rating per rank).

You can temper an item to +1 from the beginning of the game. You gain the ability to temper up to one additional tier at 40, 60, 80, and 100 Smithing, for a total of +5. Then, Adamant's five tempering perks each provide one additional tier, allowing you to reach +10. This system smooths out the progression of Smithing while maintaining the total power of the Vanilla system.

Although it is not possible to advance beyond +10 with Apothecary and Thaumaturgy installed (since they close the crafting loop), Adamant - Plus Ten Smithing does support tiers up to +20 for users who keep the crafting loop in their game. Supporting further tiers requires a simple edit to a .json.

Adamant - Shrines and Amulets

Note: With the release of Pilgrim, Adamant - Shrines and Amulets is no longer supported. I will leave it up on the mod page for a while, then archive it.

In order to support my Pilgrim and Cultist perks, I’ve uploaded a small plugin that adjusts a number of shrines, amulets, and passives in the game. This plugin is recommended, but not required. I’ve also uploaded a second plug-in that only changes the amulet and shrine associated with Talos. If you do not wish to use the Shrines and Amulets plug-in, I still highly recommend you use the Talos Tweaks plug-in, as this will significantly improve the balance of my Shout perks.

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General Changes

Adamant makes a few changes to general game mechanics in order to support its changes to perks. I have altered several game settings relating to bartering, pickpocket, and magic, including dual casting. In Vanilla, dual casting a spell increases its magnitude or duration by 2.2x, and increases its cost by 2.8x. In Adamant, dual casting a spell increases its magnitude or duration by 2.5x, and increases its cost by 3.0x. 

In addition, I have removed several Vanilla perks and given them to the player automatically. This means that the player starts with access to a few more mechanics than they would in Vanilla. A comprehensive list of these perks is included below.  

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Compatibility 

Adamant prioritizes compatibility wherever it can. In a few places, however, conflicts are unavoidable. Notably, some combat overhauls might make changes to the same game settings that Adamant does. In addition, crafting and smithing mods almost inevitably must conflict with Adamant, since many of the most popular mods (including WACCF and CCOR) make direct changes to the perk trees. For my part, I have only touched crafting recipes when I felt it was absolutely necessary to create a coherent progression in the perk tree. 

In addition, Adamant requires Mysticism and thus inherits its compatibility profile. This is largely a non-issue, since magic mods typically require patches for perk mods anyway. I have taken steps to make those compatibility patches as painless as possible: in most cases, they will simply require a keyword to be added to relevant spells. 

My Other Mods

Aetherius - A Race Overhaul
Mundus - A Standing Stone Overhaul
Mysticism - A Magic Overhaul
Adamant - A Perk Overhaul
Arena - An Encounter Zone Overhaul
Blade and Blunt - A Combat Overhaul
Scion - A Vampire Overhaul
Manbeast - A Werewolf Overhaul
Apothecary - An Alchemy Overhaul
Pilgrim - A Religion Overhaul 
Thaumaturgy - An Enchanting Overhaul
Hand to Hand - An Adamant Addon