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In Skyrim, will striking an enemy in certain areas do more damage (e.g: headshots = x2), or produce any other effects, such as stunning/crippling?

I understand that sneak shots do more damage, and that the damage from those/attacks from behind can be increased with points.

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No, there isn't locational damage, but there is a mod for locational damage that I use. nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/12615 (although it's not a very well-made mod, it doesn't work on a lot of monster/animal types and even on things it does work on it only works half the time.) –  Mark Kramer Dec 23 '13 at 20:15

4 Answers 4

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This was easy enough to test.

I equipped a weak hunting bow (I'm an archer so I'd probably 1 shot any normal npc with my usual bow), and found the nearest NPC that had no helmet on (just on the off chance that helmets can prevent head shots for some reason.)

I used getav health to read the NPC's health for every shot.

Bullseye!
Bullseye!

She took 79 damage regardless where I hit her, so no, there's no extra damage for headshots.

My tested locations:

  • Nose
  • Hand
  • Feet
  • Stomach
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My only regret was I forgot to test the knees. –  z ' Apr 9 '12 at 16:04

No. Skyrim has no concept of location-amplified damage.

You can decapitate with your attacks in some cases, but such effects are not triggered by preferentially attacking the head.

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There are also criticals but they again are not determined by location but rather by perks. –  IttyBrittyGirlGamer Nov 18 '11 at 17:31
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Source? Or did you test this? –  MorganTiley Nov 23 '11 at 17:17
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@MorganTiley nothing about locational damage is mentioned, either in-game or in the manual, which, combined, are otherwise pretty comprehensive on the subject of combat. Additionally, there hasn't been locational damage in past games in the series, of which the Skyrim combat engine is very faithful to. –  Raven Dreamer Dec 2 '11 at 20:53

No, but since Skyrim is using a modified version of Gamebryo which was used in Oblivion, Fallout, New Vegas, the vats system from the Fallout series is still in place and it may be possible with modifications to implement location specific damage.

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Not necessarily. More likely is that VATS is disabled or removed entirely. –  SevenSidedDie Nov 22 '11 at 19:18
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Some of the VATS script commands still work in the game and some do not. I believe modders will be able to implement the feature if it was partially taken out. –  Precog DragonBorn Nov 23 '11 at 0:51
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We can hope! That'd be better than the way the locational damage mod was implemented for Oblivion. –  SevenSidedDie Nov 23 '11 at 0:59
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I found a mod that adds damage location. I have not tested it, use at own risk skyrim.nexusmods.com/mods/12615 –  Pyrodante Sep 4 '12 at 20:43

Sometimes in my game, I can get a critical attack that does more damage than a normal one, its somewhat random though.

I can shoot them in the face one time and get normal damage then do it again and get a critical attack. You know it's a critical when it does that hollow knock sound when it hits them, but I've only found it works with a bow, haven't properly done it with swords yet.

And in case someone thinks I'm mistaking this for a sneak attack, this is while we can both see each other and attacking.

However, it's not just the face that has given me critical damage, I've shot them in the chest too and it's happened.

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There are perks in the One-Handed, Two-Handed, and Archery trees which give chances for random crits. Since you're only seeing them with bows, I'd say you've taken that perk from the Archery tree. (It's the second or third perk going up the right hand side.) –  Dave Sherohman Dec 5 '11 at 15:41

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