Skyrim has been out for a long time, and by this time most people have explored every nook and cranny of the game. There’s no doubt that it’s an amazing game that brings hours of gameplay with unique quests and foes. However, after a while, there’s not much you can do in the game. To make more out of this immensely popular game, different mods have been created. These mods can range from the improvement in the quality of the surroundings to mods that make stuff blow up for no reason. Here are the 30 best Skyrim mods to use in 2020.
Best Skyrim Mods (Updated August 2020)
Before we wade into the list, let’s take a quick look at all the categories we have covered for the best Skyrim Mods. You can simply click on the link below and discover new and essential mods just like that. You can also learn how to install Skyrim mods from a mini-guide below.
- Essential Skyrim Mods
- Graphics Mods
- Gameplay Mods
- Weapons and Armour Mods
- World Mods
- Quest Mods
- Funny Mods
How to Apply Skyrim Mods
For people who do not know how to apply these mods, you will only need to click on the link of the mod you want and subscribe to it. It will download and apply itself from the Steam workshop.
Some mods are not available there, so instead, we are including links to the mods. You should also download the Skyrim Script Extender. This will help in applying more complicated mods. So, now that you know how to apply Skyrim mods, here are the 30 best Skyrim Mods you should definitely try.
Essential Skyrim Mods
1. Relighting Skyrim
If you have played Skyrim, or you’ve just started, you must have noticed light coming from illogical sources. There are doors that emit light, or maybe there isn’t any realistic directional light. To fix this and make Skyrim more graphically appealing, you can apply this mod.
What this mod does is that it reprograms the game entirely to make lighting effects much better in the game. Light only emits from fires, stars, and other sources of light rather than basic non-luminous objects like benches and rocks.
2. Apocalypse Spells Mod
Not all the various Skyrim mods enhance the visuals in the game, the modding community has some amazing mods to spice up your gameplay and adds features which are immensely fun to play with. The Apocalypse Spells mod adds a lot to your game; 140 spells, to be exact.
These spells range from calling of basic objects to smashing enemies, to summoning ferocious tornadoes that suck everything in their path. These spells are designed very well and play well with the history and tone of Skyrim.
3. Duel Combat Realism
Duel offers an amazing fix to the unrealistic combat system in Skyrim. It completely changes how every battle is fought. It forces users to pay close attention to the stamina bar, as it becomes vital for survival.
This mod ties in your armor and your weapons to bring realism. If you use a good shield, it can actually stop the attack completely. This means users need to be tactical and use both defense and offense if they desire victory.
4. Sounds of Skyrim
Sounds of Skyrim is one of the best mods that you can install on your gaming environment. It’s a merged version of three projects: Civilization, Wilds, and Dungeons. Collectively, it offers more than 460 sounds based on the ambiance and gaming scenes. The Sounds of Skyrim is better than the vanilla theme because of its highly immersive sound.
You can hear the echo of doors opening, children playing, dogs bark in the background and more. The best part is that sounds are affected by the time of day, weather and location. To sum up, if you want an immersive experience while playing Skyrim then this mod is indispensable.
5. Moonpath to Elsweyr
Exploring the same place for a long time can get boring, right? To bring new landscapes and gameplay to Skyrim, you can use this mod. This mod gets you to Elsweyr – a beautiful landscape with forests and wilderness. You can hunt and stalk your prey and even explore Elsweyr with the short six quests.
All the characters of Elsweyr are carefully created with voice acting. This mod pairs up well with the 2K Textures mod shown above, as the landscape of Elsweyr is beautiful and using those textures makes them come to life.
6. Monster Mayhem
Battling monsters is fun, but beating the same monsters over and over again gets boring. The thrill of facing new and unknown creatures cannot be replicated. To remedy this problem, the Monster Mayhem Mod comes into play.
This mod introduces many new creatures to the Skyrim world. It opens a slew of different levels, each with their own unique behemoth. Battling these monsters is thrilling and gives what most people want – more things to kill.
7. Open Cities
Skyrim has a lot of loading screens, and everyone knows how frustrating loading screens can be. They tend to ruin the flow of the gameplay; especially when you cannot even stroll in a city without them being loaded.
To solve this issue, this mod comes into play. This mod banishes all loading screens when you are in the city. This means you are free to roam around in the city, without the annoying loading taking place. A simple mod, yet a frustration reliever.
8. Sky UI
Now a lot of you might not like the stock UI that Skyrim offers and I don’t blame you. The UI does feel a little bit clunky and you can easily get something a whole lot more intuitive by using a mod. I would recommend that you try out Sky UI – a great UI replacement for Skyrim which will surely improve the way you interact with the game.
The mod offers a much more convenient inventory management system, support for full text search, sorting and extended data columns. The mod also offers complete customization, among a ton of other features, which makes it one of my go-to mods every time I think of doing another quick play of Skyrim.
Skyrim Graphics Mods
9. 2K Textures
If you have a top of the line PC with bleeding-edge specs, you should try this mod out. Skyrim – being a relatively old title – lacks some fine details and textures, and although there is an HD patch, this mod goes beyond that as well.
This mod offers textures at up to 4K (2160p) resolution. It completely changes the visuals in the game. Having these details makes the game more appealing and life-like, at the cost of some fps, as this mod does tax the GPU.
10. Castle Volkihar Redux
This mod is as grand as they come. It produces a fully built castle with extremely accurate textures and details. The castle is a complete construction with eerie corridors and dungeons. It is a thing of beauty to look at but is not only about the beauty. This grand castle comes with its very own quest line, which is set after the events of Dawnguard.
11. Skyrim Redone
This mod is the mother of all mods. This completely changes how you play and view Skyrim. T3ndo’s Skyrim redone is a combination of different mods to give the game a complete makeover. It brings nifty new features and weapons like a grappling hook and disguises.
It also is a complete overhaul of the game down to the perks, skills, and stats of every character. This is a broad and complicated mod and tends to have some issues with some systems. However, once you get it running, it truly gives you an amazing experience.
12. Phenderix Magic World
This mod is filled with magic. It is a new setting with different structures and landscapes like the school of witchcraft. It takes you to the town of Manantis, where you will be greeted with tons of magical stuff.
You will be able to learn hundreds of spells from all the schools of magic and get dozens of new followers. It even comes with a quest to help you explore the magical realm. This mod is a truly magical (pun intended) experience.
Skyrim Gameplay Mods
13. Alternate Start
If you have completed the game and want a new beginning, you can try out this mod. The Alternative Start mod offers a lot of different starting points as different characters. The characters are all different and fit in Skyrim’s storyline perfectly. The mod is integrated into your game and you can start an alternate new story in the game.
You can start as a farmer, a necromancer or many other characters of your choosing. This provides an interesting spin in the original gameplay, and characters like the shipwrecked guy on an island with nothing but the rags make for an amazing survival styled gameplay.
14. Dark Brotherhood Resurrection
If you enjoyed the Dark Brotherhood quest and its storyline then you are going to love this mod. This mod adds another 4+ hours of campaign to the Dark Brotherhood storyline. You will be accompanied by the best contract killers in the brotherhood and listen to some of the best stories they have to share. Learn more about the intricate details of the dark brotherhood and enjoy new conversations via this mod. You are a part of the brotherhood now.
15. Rabbit Hole Dungeon
The Rabbit Hole Dungeon mod produces a vertical burrow of a dungeon, as implied by its name. The dungeon goes 50 levels deep into the ground and offers a lot of adventure for players. The dungeon has different enemies in each of those 50 levels.
You must beat all the enemies on a particular floor to proceed to the next floor, like an arena action-adventure game. This makes the dungeon more challenging, as 50 levels of enemies is a lot to take on. The dungeon also changes every time you revisit it, making sure you get a new experience every time.
16. Cutting Room Floor
The Skyrim world is vast. It is filled with many creatures, characters, and different landscapes. The game itself is well around 100 hours but, if you have completed and explored everything, you might want to check this mod out.
Cutting Room Floor will enable you to dwell deeper into Skyrim, as this allows you to explore things which did not make the final cut of Skyrim. The mod shows you all new quests, NPCs, and many items, which were taken out.
Skyrim Weapons and Armour Mods
17. Immersive Weapons
For some of you out there, modding is a way to make any game a whole lot more immersive. If that’s the case with you, then you should definitely check out the Immersive Weapons mod, a mod that will drastically enhance the variety of weapons in the world of Skyrim. The mod adds 230 new weapons to the game, all of which somehow fit into the lore, and distributes the around the world.
With the mod, you’ll also be able to break down weapons at smelters and get their base components and make new weapons with custom crafting requirements that further promote immersion. In case you like the mod, you should also check out the Immersive Armor mod which does pretty much the same for the armor you can find and equip in game.
18. Reverse Crafting
The Reverse Crafting mod brings a much-needed feature to Skyrim. In plain old Skyrim, if players on their quests find something useless like a lower tier sword, that item is thrown away. You can not reuse its materials to make something else. This mod brings that feature to Skyrim.
If you find a junk item, you can recycle it and re-purpose its materials. This makes the overall gameplay better for the players because the materials can be easily used somewhere else for bigger and better things.
19. Bandolier Extra Inventory
The world of Skyrim is a vast one, with many items and weapons. On your quests, you will find many items, and many are of use, so choosing between them can become a daunting task. This mod allows your character to hold more items than in plain Skyrim. This way, you can have all the items you need without opting to leave anything behind.
20. Way of the Monk
Now, this mod may seem a little clickbait-y, but it is still pretty cool. The mod strips off your armor & weapons and forces you to face your enemies with your bare hands. The mod introduces two new skill trees: Unarmed and Unarmored, and it also introduces perks related to your new way of fighting. This It does not do anything but answer the question: Can I really a take on a mammoth with my bare hands?
Skyrim World Mods
The Falskaar mod is one of the most impressive mods out there. This mod creates a whole new continent, with a whopping 25 hours of gameplay. The creation of Falskaar took nearly 2000 hours, and the creator now works at Bungie, creating Destiny. We encourage anyone who reads this to give this mod a try.
The continent has numerous quests and wildlife, and the landscape is beautiful. Attention has been paid to the details, and the mod’s popularity further proves the great gameplay of this mod.
22. A Quality World Map
In case you are unaware, A Quality World Map is one of the most popular Skyrim mods out there. It’s among the highest downloaded mods on NexusMods. The mod offer a new set of highly-detailed maps of Skyrim. The maps have comprehensive roads and clear textures which makes it easy for you to navigate while playing the game.
In addition, the mod also brings a complete Solsteim map which looks wonderful when you merge it with Clear Map Skies addon. All in all, A Quality World Map is something that you simply can’t afford to miss.
23. Tundra Defense
Skyrim’s quests are pretty fun to play and offer a lot of action and quests. However, you sometimes might want to slack off and just chill. This is where the Tundra Defense mod comes in. This mod introduces a tower defense style mini-game in which you build your tower and then defend it.
The mod is well built and makes you more responsible, as you need to defend your ground, else it will be overrun. You can hire guards to help defend your creation, have citizens settle in, or even trigger attacks by yourself for instant action.
24. Return Of Atlantis
The lost city – Atlantis – has made its way to Skyrim with this mod. Through this mod, Atlantis rises from the depths of the seas to give you more ways to interact with Skyrim. This mod fits well with the Skyrim lore and offers a lot of beautiful scenery, as well as different characters for you to explore.
This dungeon is filled with merman, whirlpools, and agents of Hades. The dungeon is 4 hours long, and you need to fight a challenging boss after the four-hour exploration of the ten chambers present in this dungeon.
Skyrim Quest Mods
25. ThirteenOrange’s Quests Mods
ThirteenOrange creates a series of quests in Skyrim which sure are amazing. These quests are lore-friendly and fit perfectly into the Skyrim world. A lot of thought was put into the mod, as the quests offer much more than just fast enemies. There are total five quests, and every one of them focuses more on story than random fights.
There are well-written scriptures, and a wide variety of landscapes to explore. You will travel to different realms, beat a giant and slay creatures. All with one mod. A must try for all the Skyrim fans.
If you liked the gameplay Falskaar brought, then you are surely going to love the Enderal mod. This mod brings close to 100 hours of fresh gameplay, and it feels like a new game rather than a mod. Enderal is beautifully created, like many other great mods out there.
It features an amazing quest line with voice acting, and many new landscapes to explore. The landscape ranges from a densely forested mainland to snow covered mountains. This mod also overhauls the skill and talent system.
27. Needs and Diseases
Survival mode mods are becoming more and popular, and this mod is for those who are looking to start out in the survival mode scene. This mod makes it necessary for your character to do mundane tasks such as sleep, eat, and drink water. Failure to do so would result in dire consequences. This mod is not as severe as other survival mods, but it still will make sure you are wary of such things before taking off on a quest.
Skyrim Funny Mods
28. Bear Musician
Bear Musician is considered one of the funniest Skyrim mods of all time. You attempt to make the Bear Musician your friend and once you have become a companion, the Bear will always be with you. The Bear will play melodies from lutes while you kill the enemies. And if you kill multiple enemies then the Bear plays a special Misirlou melody. So the next time you play Skyrim, make sure to have your Bear by the side.
29. Macho Dragons
Macho Dragons is an animation mod that changes the appearance of dragons in Skyrim. The head is altered with the famous wrestler Randy Savage who was known as Macho Man. And hilariously, the dragon is shirtless legs are clothed like Savage’s attire. It’s a weird caricature of humans and dragon and for many gamers, it looks funny while playing Skyrim.
The funny part is that instead of the dragon roaring and shouting it yells catchphrases of the famous wrestler. So if you want to change the visual appearance of the dragon with something funny then you can try this Skyrim mod.
30. Uncle Sheogorath
So you love playing Skyrim, but hate the loading screen, don’t you? Worry not, there is Uncle Sheogorath to tickle your funny bones. When you are on the loading screen, Uncle Sheogorath will crack funny jokes, engage you in insane conversations, offer you peculiar observations, and more. Many users find the jokes filled with hilarity and you might also like them. So go ahead and install this funny mod on Skyrim.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Which is the Best Mod for Skyrim?
Picking one from a library of thousand Skyrim mods is impossible, but if I were to choose one then I would pick A Quality World Map. It just makes everything look so beautiful with clear roads, maps, textures, and more.
Q. Which Skyrim Edition is Best for Mods?
Currently, Skyrim Special Edition (SE) is the best version that you should use for modding. It has huge community support and SE is compatible with many older Skyrim mods as well.
Q. What are the Best Graphic Mods for Skyrim?
There are tons of graphics mods for Skyrim, but I really find 2K Textures to be the best graphic mod for Skyrim. It significantly improves the gaming environment even on a low-end PC.
Q. Are Skyrim Mods Worth It?
Skyrim Mods are definitely worth it. You get new characters, longer gameplay, improved graphics, and undiscovered quests to fulfill. I would say, if you enjoy playing Skyrim then you should give a try at the mods.
Enhance Skyrim Gameplay With The Best Skyrim Mods
Skyrim might be a pretty old game, but the gameplay never gets old because there are countless mods out there for this beautiful game and each mod adds a completely new dimension to the game. If you are bored of the basic game then do try out these amazing Skyrim mods and let us know what you think in the comment section below.