Before I begin: One of the things people don’t realize about Skyrim is the abundance of crowd control options there are. Many people seem to think there is not even any crowd control at all. I decided that, while unnoticed, crowd control is one of the most important effects of any game, and is something people use without realising it in some cases. So I sat down and wrote this guide to crowd control, so without further ado let us begin. What is crowd control? Seriously it’s not that complicated: Crowd control is anything that makes an enemy or crowd of enemies easier to handle, whether by knocking them back, stunning them, paralyzing them, slowing them down, or making them simply ignore you, it is crowd control. Skyrim offers many crowd control options and they all have their uses, it will be my job to teach you them. These are what I classify as means of crowd control: Knockback/Stagger: This is the basic knockback done by power attacks, the weaker Unrelenting Force shout, etc. Knockdown: This is the knockdown seen by a full powered Unrelenting Force shout, leaves the enemy rag dolled and/or on the ground. This can also be seen elsewhere besides the shout. Paralyze/Freeze: Not only stuns the enemy, but keeps them in a state of stasis, unmoving and helpless. Freeze is treated like a paralyze in this guide for all intents and purposes, and acts the same besides for a visual difference. This is achieved through perks, poisons, spells, enchantments, or shouts. Slow: Slows the enemy, not overly complicated. It is always found with Frost Damage, and can be achieved through poisons as well. Calm: This calms the enemy, making them nonhostile and ignore you, making it easier to sneak once detected, avoid damage, attack a target without being attacked in turn, or get away with crimes. This effect can be achieved by using spell, shouts, and powers. Fear/Turn Undead: Makes the enemies afraid of you, causing them to run away in fear and stop attacking you until the effect wears off. Turn Undead is the undead variant of this and is treated the same in this guide for all intents and purposes. Can be achieved with poisons, spells, enchantments, spells, and powers. Frenzy/Fury: These are an odd ball in crowd control, they make the enemy attack anything they see, but do not direct inhibit them. Instead these can cause a crowd of enemies to fight each other until there is just one standing, at which point you can finish off this weakened foe. Spells, enchantments, and poisons can all apply this effect. Crowd control for warriors: Warriors have three natural crowd controls which are achieved either through perks or are inherent to their skills, knockback/Stagger, paralyze, and knockdown. Without Perks, Enchantments, or Poisons: Knockback/Stagger: Power attacks and bashing will cause the enemy to stagger, leaving them open to further attack. Through Perks: Paralyze: Both the One-handed and Two-handed skills have a 25% chance to paralyze on backwards power attacks perk when you reach 100 in either of them. Paralyzed enemies fall to the ground and cannot move, leaving them helpless to your attacks or leaving an opening to heal, switch weapons, or run. However the fact they fall to the ground can make targeting troublesome. Knockdown: The Shield Charge Perk can knock down enemies, however it requires 100 Block to get. Enemies which have been knockdown can easily be attacked or can leave an opening to escape, heal, or switch weapons. Through Enchantments: Frenzy/Fury: Not the best enchantment for a warrior, but I guess it could be spread around a little and make things a free for all. Fear/Turn Undead: Nothing easier to kill than an enemy with his back turned and running instead of fighting, however chasing down your targets can be annoying and inconvenient. Slow: Frost enchantments give you a 50% slow effect on every hit as well as the damage. A slowed enemy is easier to chase down, escape, dodge or hit since they can’t dodge as easily. Paralyze: Paralyzed enemies fall to the ground and cannot move, leaving them helpless to your attacks or leaving an opening to heal, switch weapons, or run. However the fact they fall to the ground can make targeting troublesome. Through Poison: Frenzy/Fury: Not the best use of a poison for a warrior, and far less effective than as an enchantment since it needs to be reapplied frequently so that it can be spread enough to be any good. Fear: Nothing easier to kill than an enemy with his back turned and running instead of fighting, however chasing down your targets can be annoying and inconvenient. Slow: Slow can come as a solitary effect with poisons. A slowed enemy is easier to chase down, escape, dodge or hit since they can’t dodge as easily. Paralyze: Paralyzed enemies fall to the ground and cannot move, leaving them helpless to your attacks or leaving an opening to heal, switch weapons, or run. However the fact they fall to the ground can make targeting troublesome. Crowd control for archers: Through Perks: Knockback/Stagger: The Power Shot perk grants a 50% chance to cause the enemy to stagger with every shot they take. By far superior to that of mages or warriors who need to use magicka or stamina respectively to achieve a stagger, the archer needs neither. Paralyze: The Archery 100 perk, Bull’s-eye, grants a 15% paralyze chance to every shot. This however can be annoying as it’s hard to check to see if the enemy is dead or just paralyzed after they drop, they are also a little bit harder to hit. Through Enchantments: Frenzy/Fury: Nice for an archer, just prick a boss with this and everyone around him will attack him, then take shots at the crowd and watch the infighting as your enemies cut each other down for you. Fear/Turn Undead: Nothing easier to kill than an enemy with his back turned and running instead of fighting. Archers will find this useful as it gives them distance, stops enemy attacks, and since they attack from range, you don’t need to chase the enemy as much. Slow: Frost enchantments give you a 50% slow effect on every hit as well as the damage. A slowed enemy is at an archer’s mercy, they take longer to close in on you, and they are much easier to hit when they move like a snail. Paralyze: Paralyzed enemies fall to the ground and cannot move, leaving them helpless to your attacks or leaving an opening to heal, switch weapons, or run. However the fact they fall to the ground can make targeting troublesome since they can be harder to hit or when determining if they are alive or dead. Through Poisons: Frenzy/Fury: For an archer this is an alright poison. Using a weak bow and arrow you can pick one good strong enemy and start some mayhem from a distance. Fear: Not as good as the enchantment, but still works about the same as the enchantment does for an archer, just need to reapply it when needed. Slow: Slow can come as a solitary effect with poisons. The difference between this and the Frost enchantment is this needs to be reapplied to the bow when it wears off and has a varying levels of slowing and duration, without the added frost damage. Paralyze: As a poison I find it less effective due to poison resistant enemies, the enchantment does much better here. Crowd control for mages: Without Perks, Enchantments, or Poisons: Calm: The Illusion School provides a few calm spells. Calm can be used to make a hostile enemy ignore you and become nonhostile. Frenzy/Fury: The Illusion school provides you with some spells for this. It gets your enemies fighting each other instead of you, making it easier to pick off the last few yourself Fear/Turn Undead: Illusion provides fear and restoration gives you turn undead. Both are great when you need to get an enemy off of you. Slow: Frost spells all come with this effect, and there are quite a few frost spells. Paralyze: Alteration provides you with two paralyze spells, a single target, and an area of effect version. Both will drop your enemies and hold them still. Through Perks: Knockback/Stagger: Impact gives you this effect, makes a great tool to Stun-lock someone. Fear/Turn Undead: Oblivion Binding makes all your bound weapons also cast Turn Undead with each hit, while Intense Flames cause fire spells to induce fear. Freeze: Deep Freeze can make your frost spells freeze your enemies. Through Poisons: Frenzy/Fury: Can be applied to Bound Weapons, nowhere nearly as effective as spells. Fear: Can be applied to Bound Weapons, nowhere nearly as effective as spells. Slow: Can be applied to Bound Weapons, nowhere nearly as effective as spells. Paralyze: Can be applied to Bound Weapons, nowhere nearly as effective as spells. Notes: Every Illusion perk besides Silent Casting and the spell cost reducing perks make Illusion spells a wider range of enemies. Pure mages cannot use enchantments since they do not typically wield weapons. Shouts that grant crowd control: Dismay: This shout grants a fear effect. (Up to level 7, 36 feet, 30 sec.) (Up to level 15, 50 feet, 30 sec.) (Up to level 24, 93.75 feet, 30 sec.) Frost Breath: Deals frost damage and therefore provides a 50% slow. (10 damage per second for 5 seconds.) (14 damage per second for 5 seconds.) (18 damage per second for 5 seconds.) Ice Form: Freezes a target solid, as well as deals 2 points of damage a second. The target is released if you hit them. (15 seconds.) (30 seconds.) (60 seconds.) Kyne’s Peace: Calms animals up to level 20 Unrelenting Force: Staggers or knocks back enemies depending on number of words used. (Staggers) (Greatly Staggers) (Sends the enemies flying) Crowd control for assassins, this one is going to be a little different: Assassins really don’t use crowd control quite the same way as those who get fight their enemies face to face. Anyone who plays an assassin plays by a simple set of unspoken rules: “Don’t fight, kill. Don’t be seen before the kill; don’t be seen after the kill. And never give the enemy a chance to strike back.” Now while you may not always be able to live by those rules because of some reason or another, too much lighting, enemies having a plops load of health, Sithis decided he doesn’t wish for someone to die until after the second or third hit, crowd control can still make your day a little bit nicer. However assassins can use any method of combat listed above so this section will directly discuss how to best use the different effects as an assassin to maximize your efficiency for the typical assassin build. Knockback/Stagger: This I great if you are seen as it can keep you from getting killed while you fight in the open. Knockdown: This here can save your life, knock down a group and run and hide again and come back for your sneak attacks once things cool down. Paralyze/Freeze: A paralyzed enemy is helpless, perfect when you can’t kill them on the first hit. Slow: Makes escape easier when detected. Calm: Makes them ignore you, this way you can hide again and try for that sneak attack bonus right away. Fear/Turn Undead: It’s easier to escape and hide when your enemies are running away, don’t you agree? Frenzy/Fury: Use this on the crowd and they will kill each other as you watch from the shadows. After all, the best assassin doesn’t even need a weapon. Last notes: This one got out really late, let me know if anyone can think of something to add, and I’ll add it if I think it fits. Otherwise ask questions below and please avoid the “I find Paralyze over powered” comments. I agree, but this is for raw information, not opinions.