Detailed Stats and Leveling Guide for The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion

Introduction [A0000] *********************************************************

Author: MichaelCrosato (MykC)
Contributors: Scy046, Azala and Nilwarp

This FAQ tries to quantify the effects of stats in this game and avoid terms
like better, worse, less and more when it can.

This FAQ tries to explain how the choice you make in creating your character
will affect your character.

This FAQ generally focuses on how to build your character to allow for the 
easiest time getting through the game.

This isn't a walk through.

This isn't for role-players (unless you like to know the underlying equations
and math that govern the game).

This FAQ isn't 100% finished.

Some of the information may not be correct. If you find something inaccurate 
or plain wrong, please let me know by emailing me. If you have something to 
contribute such as giving insight to how a skill works, how to make the most 
of a skill, your own build theory, etc. I will review and add it if it 
applies. If you think there should be something presented in this FAQ that 
another FAQ has not already provided just let me know and I'll research it and
add to the FAQ if I can. So, please feel free to email me at

Novice FAQ Users [A0001] -----------------------------------------------------

If you need to find a section simply reference the code on the right in the
table of contents [00000] and select the "find" or "search" function on your 
browser/text editor (crtl-f is the default for most browsers and text 
editors). Put in the code associated with the topic and hit the search/find 
command and it will bring you to the beginning of that section.

Table of Contents [00000] ****************************************************

Introduction 							[A0000]
  Novice FAQ Users						[A0001]
Table of Contecnts 						[B0000]
The Character Creation Process					[C0000]
  Race								[C0001]
  Birth Sign							[C0002]
  Class								[C0003]
  Specialization						[C0004]
  Favored Attribute						[C0005]
  Major Skills							[C0006]
Character Stats 						[D0000]
  Level, Health, Magicka and Fatigue 				[D0001]
  Increasing Your Level 					[D0002]
  Attributes 							[D0003]
    Strength 							[DA000]
    Intelligence 						[DA001]
    Willpower 							[DA002]
    Agility 							[DA003]
    Speed 							[DA004]
    Endurance 							[DA005]
    Personality 						[DA006]
    Luck 							[DA007]
  Summary of Attributes 					[D0004]
Races 								[F0000]
  Brenton							[F0001]
  High Elf							[F0002]
    Do I choose Bretonor High Elf?				[FA000]
  Orc								[F0003]
  Redguard							[F0004]
    Do I choose Orc or Redguard?				[FA001]
  Wood Elf							[F0005]
  The Other Races						[F0005]
Birth Signs							[G0000]
  The Attribute Bonus Signs					[G0001]
  Atronach							[G0002]
  The Mage							[G0003]
  The Ritual							[G0004]
  The Useless Signs						[G0005]
Skills								[H0000]
  Acrobatics							[H0001]
  Alchemy							[H0002]
  Alteration							[H0003]
  Armorer							[H0004]
  Athletics							[H0005]
  Blade								[H0006]
  Block								[H0007]
  Blunt								[H0008]
  Conjuration							[H0009]
  Destruction							[H0010]
  Hand-to-Hand							[H0011]
  Heavy Armor							[H0012]
  Illusion							[H0013]
  Light Armor							[H0014]
  Marksman							[H0015]
  Mercantile							[H0016]
  Mysticism							[H0017]
  Restoration							[H0018]
  Security							[H0019]
  Sneak								[H0020]
  Speechcraft							[H0021]
  Summary of Skills						[H0022]
EXP Chart and Additional EXP Info				[I0000]
Build Strategies						[J0000]
  Max Level Max Stats 						[J0001]
  Max Stats by Level 40						[J0002]
  Max Stats less Luck by Level 27				[J0003]
  Best stats possible by Level 20				[J0004]
  Pure Warrior at Level 8					[J0005]
  Pure Mage at Level 10						[J0006]
  Max Skills at Level 1						[J0007]
Example Leveling Paths						[K0000]
  Rules of Leveling						[K0001]
  How Should I Choose My Major Skills? 				[K0002]
    I want to power level all my skills to 100 			[KA000]
    I want to power level only my essential skills 		[KA001]
    I want to power level a low level fighter 			[KA002]
    I want to power level a low level mage 			[KA003]
    I want to play a fighter character as I level 		[KA004]
    I want to play a mage character as I level 			[KA005]
    I want to play a thief/assassin character as I level	[KA006]
    I want to role play my character 				[KA007]
  Breton as a Mage						[K0003]
  Wood Elf as a Fighter/Archer					[K0004]
Equipment Information						[R0000]
  Weapon Stats							[R0001]
    Blade 1H							[RA000]
    Blade 2H							[RA001]
    Blunt 1H 							[RA002]
    Blunt 2H 							[RA003]
    Bows And Arrows						[RA004]
  Calculating Your Weapon Damage				[R0002]
  Armor Stats *							[R0003]
    Light Armor	*						[RB000]
    Heavy Armor	*						[RB001]
    Armor's Impact on Spell Effectiveness			[RB002]
NPC Information	*						[S0000]
Miscellaneous Information					[L0000]
  Effects that affect your movement speed			[L0001]
  Exploits and Tricks					        [L0002]
  Spell Making and Enchanting					[L0003]
  Magicka Regeneration Rate					[L0004]
  Increase EXP rate for Magicka Schools				[L0006]
  The Miscellaneous of the Miscellaneous			[L0007]
  Adjusting the Games Difficulty				[L0008]
  Ugh, the attribute systems sucks, I want to have FUN!		[L0009]
Things Planned							[M0000]
Revisions							[N0000]
Legal								[O0000]
Thanks								[P0000]

*Indicates Incomplete or Planned Section

The Character Creation Process [C0000] ***************************************

When you first start the game youÂ’ll be asked to choose a race. As you 
continue your escape through the sewers youÂ’ll be asked to choose a birth sign
and finally near the end youÂ’ll be asked to choose your class. When you 
attempt to exit the sewer youÂ’ll be prompted to confirm your race, birth sign 
and class. This is a good place to make a permanent save game as it allows you
to customize your characters starting stats without playing the tutorial over 

Race [C0001] -----------------------------------------------------------------

Each race has a total of 320 starting attribute points; however, they are 
distributed differently depending on the race. Each race will also have a 
total of 45 skill points; again these points are distributed based on race. 
Lastly, each race has its own special abilities and resistances.

Birth Sign [C0002] -----------------------------------------------------------

YouÂ’ll be able to choose one birth sign for your character. Each birth sign 
comes with a unique bonus and some come with drawbacks to compensate from 
their bonus.  

Class [C0003] ----------------------------------------------------------------

Your characterÂ’s class is made up your characterÂ’s specialization, favored 
attributes and major skills. YouÂ’re presented to select these in the order 
listed above.

Specialization [C0004] -------------------------------------------------------

There are 3 types of skill specializations which are Combat, Mage and Stealth.
Each specialization governs 7 skills. Skills that are part of your 
specialization will increase 33% faster than minor skills and will receive a 
+5 starting bonus.

Combat specialization includes Armorer, Athletics, Blade, Block, Blunt, 
Hand-to-Hand and Heavy Armor. 
Mage specialization includes Alchemy, Alteration, Conjuration, Destruction,
Illusion, Mysticism and Restoration.
Stealth specialization includes Acrobatics, Light Armor, Marksman, Mercantile,
Security, Sneak and Speechcraft.

Favored Attributes [C0005] ---------------------------------------------------

You will then be asked to select two favored attributes. This will give you 
a +5 bonus in each of the selected attributes.

Major Skills [C0006] ---------------------------------------------------------

You will now choose 7 major skills for youÂ’re character. This is the most 
important part of your character creation. Your major skills will determine 
how you will level. Gaining any combination of 10 major skill levels will 
allow you to increase youÂ’re characters level.

Your major skills will start with a +20 bonus making their starting value at 
least 25 and no more than 45. Major skills also have the benefit of increasing
65% faster than minor skills. If a skill happens to be a major skill and a 
specialized skill then it will increase at a rate of 122% compared to minor 

Any skills that arenÂ’t selected as major skills will be your minor skills.

Characters Stats [D0000] *****************************************************

Your Basic Stats [D0001] -----------------------------------------------------

Character Level: You will gain 1 character level for every 10 major skills 
you increase. As your character level increases the difficulty of the game 

Health: Your health is 2x your endurance plus an increase of 10% of your 
endurance value when you gain a character level. There are spells, potions 
and enchanted equipment that can further increase your health.

Magicka: Your magicka is 2x your intelligence. Your birth sign, race, spells,
potions and enchanted equipment can increase this further.

Fatigue: Your fatigue is determined by totaling your strength, willpower, 
agility and endurance. Again, spells, potions and enchanted equipment can 
increase this further. 

Your fatigue regeneration rate is 10 per second while youÂ’re not running. 
The following actions will drain fatigue: Jumping, dodging, attacking, power 
attacking, blocking (at novice skill rank) and holding an arrow pulled back 
(at novice skill rank).

Increasing Your Level [D0002] ------------------------------------------------
To increase your characterÂ’s level you must gain any combination of 10 major 
skill levels. You can only raise your level by sleeping in a bed. Once you've
gained 10 major skills, all skill levels your earn after that will counted
towards your next level and applied to your next level attribute bonuses.

When you sleep and gain a level several things will happen. Your health will 
increase by 10% of your endurance value, you can choose 3 attributes to 
increase, loot from enemies will become better, quest rewards may get better,
the locks on doors and chests will increase in difficulty and the enemies you
fight will have gotten stronger. 

When enemies do get stronger their abilities, damage and health increases at a
fix rate relative to your level. It has nothing to do with your skill or 
attribute totals.

When you raise your level you will be able to choose 3 of your attributes 
increase. If you choose to increase an attribute the minimum it can increase 
is 1 point and the maximum it can increase is 5 points. The amount of skill 
points (whether its major or minor does not matter) you increase that are 
governed by that attribute is what determines how many points you can increase
it by.

Skill Points Earned		Attribute Bonus
	0				x1
	1-4				x2
	5-7				x3
	8-9				x4
	10+				x5

The following is a chart to help explain how your character levels up and 
how leveling your skills will affect your attribute bonus.

Level 1 						Total 	Attribute
							Skill	Bonus
Strength: +4 Blunt, +3 Hand to Hand			+7	x3
Intelligence: +10 Alchemy				+10	x5
Willpower: +3 Destruction (Major)			+3	x2
Agility: +2 Marksman, +2 Sneak, +5 Security		+9	x4
Speed: +2 Athletics, +1 Acrobatics			+3	x2
Endurance: +4 Heavy Armor (Major), +2 Block		+4	x3
Personality: +2 Speechcraft, +3 Mercantile (MAJOR)	+5	x3
LucK: N/A						+0	x1

Level 2
Strength: +10 Blade (Major)				+10	x5
Intelligence: None					+0	x1
Willpower: None						+0 	x1
Agility: None						+0	x1
Speed: +10 Light Armor, +1 Atheltics, +1 Acrobatics	+12	x5
Endurance: Block +10					+10	x5
Personality: Speechcraft +1				+1	x2
Luck: N/A						+0	x1

In review:
 - Major and minor skills contribute equally to your attribute bonus.
 - Unspent attribute bonuses will not carry over to your next level.
 - If you earn more than 10 skill points for an attribute the additional
   skill points will not be carried over to the next level.
 - You begin earning your skill points for your next character level as soon
   as your earn 10 major skill points for your current character level.

So, don't earn more skill points then you need to get your x5 bonus, get your
x5 bonus in at least two attributes (3 if your not increasing luck) and level
your minor skills before you level your major skills.

Attributes [DA000] -----------------------------------------------------------

There are 8 attributes and each attributes governs 3 of your skills except 
luck which governs no skills.

Strength [DA001] -------------------------------------------------------------
Strength governs Blade, Blunt and Hand-to-Hand. Strength will increase the 
amount you can carry by 5 per strength point, your fatigue. Melee weapons will
receive a 0.66% damage increase for each point of strength you receive. 
Strength does affect hand-to-hand (see the skill listing for more details). 
Effects that increase your strength above 100 will continue to increase your 
fatigue and the amount of weight you can carry, but it will not continue to 
increase your melee damage.

Strength is important for those who will be dealing melee damage, if your not
dealing melee damage you can put this attribute lower on you priority list.

Strength does contribute to the same effects that its governing skills affect.

Intelligence [DA002] ---------------------------------------------------------

Intelligence governs Alchemy, Conjuration and Mysticism. Intelligence will 
increase your magicka by 2 points per intelligence point. Effects that raise 
your intelligence will continue to increase you magicka. See the "Magicka
Regeneration Rate" section for an explanation on how intelligence affects your

Intelligence can be placed at a low priority because of the sigil stones
that provide an enchant that give +50 magicka (you can get six of these) and
that completly dwarfs the +100 magicka that 50 intelligence would provide you.
You can get the +50 magicka until your at least level 17 though. If you play
the early game and want the most magicka as quickly as possible then you'll 
prioritize intelligence higher.

Intelligence does not affect the skills it governs.

Willpower [DA003] ------------------------------------------------------------

Willpower governs Alteration, Destruction and Restoration. Willpower will 
contribute to your fatigue score and increase your magicka regeneration rate 

If you willpower is 0 it will take ~131 seconds to regenerate your magicka 
from empty to full, 25 willpower takes ~80 seconds, 50 willpower takes ~58 
seconds, 75 willpower takes ~45 seconds and 100 willpower takes ~35 seconds. 
Willpower above 100 will continue to increase your MRR.

There is an estimate on how willpower can be predicted but it isnÂ’t 100% 
accurate. This chart uses willpower set to 0 as the reference point and the 
fractions refer to how much it will reduce the time by.

Willpower   	Time
0		 -
50		1/2
100		1/4
150		1/5
200		1/6

Willpower does not increase or decrease your characterÂ’s spell resistance 
nor does it have any affect of the skills it governs.

Willpower has the most benefit when you have a large magicka total and the 
least benefit with a small magicka total. So if you plan to have an abundace
on magicka then prioritize willpower high, and if you don't then prioritize it

Agility [DA004] --------------------------------------------------------------

Agility governs Security, Sneak and Marksman. Agility will increase the damage
dealt by bows by 0.66% per agility point, contribute to your fatigue score and
increase your resistance to knock downs (balance). Effects that raise your 
agility above 100 do not continue to increase your damage with bows, but will
continue to increase your fatigue score. It is unknown whether it will 
continue have an affect on your ability to withstand knock downs.

Agility is good for preventing knock downs and increasing bow damage. 
Preventing knock downs is important for melee characters. You can ignore the 
benefit of increased bow damage with agility if your character doesnÂ’t bother
with ranged combat or if they have strong destruction magicka.

As far as I can tell it has no affect on security or sneak. Agility does 
contribute to the same effect that marksman affects.

Speed [DA005] ----------------------------------------------------------------

Speed governs Acrobatics, Athletics and Light Armor. Speed will increase the 
rate at which your character moves. Each point you put into speed will 
increase your movement speed by 0.44%. Effects that increase your speed 
above 100 will continue to increase your speed at a rate of 0.30%.

Speed is most effective if your play style is geared towards ranged combat or
playing keep away from your foes. Your play style will effect how you want to

Speed does not affect light armor or acrobatics. It does contribute to the 
same effect that athletics affects.

Speed does not influence the skills it governs.

Endurance [DA006] ------------------------------------------------------------

Endurance governs Armorer, Block and Heavy Armor. Endurance contributes to 
your fatigue and determines your health. Your health is 2x your endurance plus
an increase of 10% of your endurance value (if you increase your choose to 
increase your endurance during the character level your new endurance value
will apply to your health increase). The game will always round down when it 
gets a fraction when determining the health increase. Anytime your endurance 
increases you receive an additional 2 health to your total. So when you gain a
character level and raise your endurance by 5 you will get another 10 health 
to your base (this is because your health is 2x your endurance). If you used 
an effect that increased you endurance by 25, you would receive an additional 
50 health for as long as that effect lasted. Effects that increase your 
endurance beyond 100 will continue to provide benefit.

Endurance is the most important attribute for any character class. It gets
priority because of the +10% health increase on character level up is not 

Endurance does not affect the skills it governs.

Personality [DA007] ----------------------------------------------------------

Personality governs: Illusion, Mercantile and Speechcraft. This affects the 
way people you interact with people. The higher your personality the greater 
the starting NPC disposition is. Every 4 personality points will give you 1 
extra starting disposition point.

Personality is essentially as poor attribute because its impact on the game is
minimal. If necessary a low personality can normally be compensated for easily
through bribes or spells.

Luck [DA008] -----------------------------------------------------------------

Luck governs: Nothing.

The following information was provided entirely by Scy046.

Luck affects how your skill performs. If luck is greater than 50 then all your
skill will gain a bonus and if its less than 50 than all your skills will 
suffer. The formula looks like:

Skill + (Luck-50) * 0.4 = Modified Skill Level (