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I thought it was a bit of a shame that Skyrim removed the Hand-to-Hand tree that was in Oblivion. But I was curious if there was a way to inflict massive damage using hand-to-hand attacks.

According to a friend (who may well be unreliable), it is possible to decapitate enemies using a punch alone.

My question is... is it?

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@LessPop_MoreFizz I disagree – l I Jan 11 '13 at 22:41
I've often wanted to do this. Just not in Skyrim. Or any other game, for that matter. – Alex Jan 15 '13 at 12:09
up vote 10 down vote accepted

No. The only way to remove heads is via a finishing move animation. And the finishing move animation using only unarmed is the neck grab and neck snap, which does not remove the head. You'll have to use a sword for a decapitation.

However, there are mods that allow you to perform unarmed decapitations.

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I've never ventured into hand on hand combat but this might just be enough to make me stop playing Oblivion for awhile. What are some possible ways to inflict this kind of damage? (Equipment wise) – The Gray Fox Jan 11 '13 at 22:51 anytime you kill someone with a weapon of any type, there's a chance of doing a finishing move. This also may depend on where you aim. With swords, there's a high likelihood you'll cut off their head. – l I Jan 12 '13 at 0:44
I just wanted to know what specific enchantments and/or equipment makes this finishing cutscene more likely to occur. The last thing I want to happen is to run up on a Bandit Marauder unarmed and fail miserably lol. – The Gray Fox Jan 12 '13 at 16:27 it occurs randomly when your next attack will kill the target. If you manage to get a 1 hit sneak attack kill, it'll happen almost all the time. – l I Jan 12 '13 at 22:49

No, it isn't possible for a simple reason: to decapitate enemies you need Savage Strike (a skill that require a one-handed weapon) or Devastating Blow (a skill that require a two-handed weapon). There is no skill that give a chance to decapitate your enemies with unarmed attacks.

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