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I am currently playing the style I love the most : Stealth Archer with a Bit of Conjuration .

I currently have two points in the Smithing Tree (base point + Arcane Blacksmith), and I don't know if I will be able to spend more points in this tree. I will probably have points to spare here, since I will only invest points in Stealth, Archery, base for one handed, and some points at conjuration.

I am currently using the level 46 version of the Nightingale Bow Upgraded (for leveled items,check here) with 100 base smithing (no pots or break exploit), plus the nightingale set with no upgrades so far.

My questions are:

1 - Would it be better to have a Daedric Bow Upgraded with the smithing perk for daedric, still with the Nightingale Bow upgraded with Arcane Blacksmithing Perk, or to spend just a few more points to have a Glass Bow and upgrade it with its Perk? (I've read in some sources that Glass bow can outdamage Daedric, and it is cheaper to achieve its perk)

2 - About the Gear. The Nightingale Set provides very good bonuses to a stealthy gameplay, even though I am using Krosis mask instead of the Hood. Is it better to use Glass Set for the same gameplay style? Edited: I wrote Daedric, but it is heavy, my bad.

3 - About the Melee Weapons, I am currently using a Glass Dagger upgraded with no perk, just to help Assassination, and for Melee combat (out of stealth) I am using level 46+ Version of Chillrend and Nightingale Blade (which I now realized that for some reason, it can't be improved with smithing). Which would be the best Dagger (for assassination purposes) and swords (for melee out of stealth combat) for me have.

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closed as not constructive by Wipqozn, Ronan Forman, z ', lunboks, John the Green Feb 6 '12 at 14:42

As it currently stands, this question is not a good fit for our Q&A format. We expect answers to be supported by facts, references, or expertise, but this question will likely solicit debate, arguments, polling, or extended discussion. If you feel that this question can be improved and possibly reopened, visit the help center for guidance. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

I'm voting to close your question as "no constructive" Asking what is the best bow / gear for your specific build not only seems too localized, but also too subjective. It also seems too much like a discussion question, which are also not permitted on the site. –  Wipqozn Feb 6 '12 at 13:09

2 Answers 2

up vote 2 down vote accepted

Light vs Heavy Bows
I think there are objective answers to 1. DPS is frankly a minimal concern with bows considering:

  • The real damage from bows comes from sneak attacks. Both light and heavy bows will get the first shot at the same time (t = 0) and then get one or two after that. (Personally, I'd rather trade a bit of DPS for higher initial damage. It's better to not need that second shot for me.)
  • You're not rapid-firing them, so even if the max speed differential is x% the actual differential is usually lower than that. Plus you can miss. To get that higher DPS you have to actually connect. It gets easier with bullet time, of course.
  • It's not even a big difference. A Daedric Bow only weighs 4 (pounds?) more than a Glass Bow, so it fires around 15% slower.

The real question should be whether you want to conserve perks and what fits best from a role-playing perspective. The faster DPS from light bows really comes from things like the Long Bow, where you would obviously be giving up a considerable amount of damage. But it's hard to say where on the continuum the next lightest bow is better than the next heaviest bow.

In-Game vs Crafted
Smithing and enchanting will allow you to create much better weapons and armor than you'll find in-game. Add in alchemy and the difference is huge. This is especially true for items like the Nightingale Bow and other items where no smithing perks apply. In fact, any bow for which you have a smithing perk can potentially be crafted to exceed the Nightingale Bow in damage. You don't really even have to exploit anything here; if you have Enchanting at 100 you can obviously add the same effects and with Smithing at 100 you can definitely make a stronger bow.

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What about using the "Arcane Blacksmith" perk. I thought it would count on when upgrading Nightingale Bow. Are you sure it does not apply ? –  Marcello Grechi Lins Feb 6 '12 at 13:44
I missed what you meant with this : "Personally, I'd rather trade slightly more damage for the certainty of higher damage on that first attack." –  Marcello Grechi Lins Feb 6 '12 at 13:47
You are Right. Seems like the Perk does not applies for the Nightingale Bow. –  Marcello Grechi Lins Feb 6 '12 at 13:51
@MarcelloGrechiLins Arcane Blacksmith applies. It's the tempering perks I'm talking about. That is, although the Nightingale Bow is ebony, even if you take the Ebony Smithing perk you can't improve it any better. Smithing perks roughly double the amount of damage improvement, so that's a big hit. As for the "slightly more damage part," I'm rephrasing it. I mean that light bows may have higher DPS but higher single damage can mean the difference between 1 arrow per target and 2. –  brymck Feb 6 '12 at 13:59
So Arcane Blacksmithing or Ebony Smithing does not doubles the "quality" of the Bow when improved as it would work with the Ebony set and weapons ? Hm... what about the rest of the set ? Will the Arcane BS Perk doubles the quality on the Nightingale set ? –  Marcello Grechi Lins Feb 6 '12 at 14:05
  1. I find a well-upgraded glass bow works really well, but you'll need to add the smithing perk for glass if you want to make the most of it. I've heard it said that lighter bows = more shots per second, and it seems true, testing glass vs ebony.
  2. Daedric = heavy = poor stealth performance Glass is light, so it works as well for stealth as any other light armour, except in cases where the armour offers other bonuses, as with the Nightingale Armour.
  3. Valdrs Lucky Dagger has a nice bonus, but you'll need to smith it. I currently dual-wield Valdr's lucky dagger and Mehrune's Razor which gives a high chance of a critical hit, and a slight chance of a one-hit kill. But if you're levelling up stealth, you should have a 15x backstab.

Also, if you join the Dark Brotherhood, you'll get shrouded gloves, which double backstab damage.

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Errata : Sorry about Question Number two, it was my bad, sure Daedric is Heavy. Duh ! I will edit my question –  Marcello Grechi Lins Feb 6 '12 at 12:52
New Question with Other doubts here : gaming.stackexchange.com/questions/49788/… –  Marcello Grechi Lins Feb 6 '12 at 12:59

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