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Not all the followers will shoot arrows forever even though you have only given them one unit. What I need to know is how can I force followers whose arrows don't last to be infinite. Mods and console command are also welcome.

Note: I want an epic army of archers following me around. I can currently have ten of them at once.

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I've never seen this situation. If you give them one arrow, do they only shoot one arrow? –  Resorath Mar 14 '12 at 20:48
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Mods and console commands are almost certainly the only way to achieve that effect. @Resorath some companions can use 1 arrow forever, some user 1 arrow per shot. –  kotekzot Mar 14 '12 at 20:48
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Some companions are more resourcful than others. –  Emerica. Mar 14 '12 at 20:55
    
@Renan If you want to harvest a large number of high quality arrows, go to Castle Dour in Solitude. Pickpocket everyone's arrows if they have them, and reverse pickpocket and place one high quality arrow in their inventory. After an interrupt, they will start shooting the new arrows. One way of forcing an interrupt is to get caught pickpocketing. –  Anderson Mar 28 '12 at 16:56
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2 Answers

up vote 8 down vote accepted
+50

It's been my experience (with Lydia only, I'm afraid) that followers using their default bow will shoot unlimited copies of the most powerful arrow in their inventory; give her a better bow, however, and she'll start using up her inventory's arrows. (To clarify: If you give her X arrows of any type (where X > 1), she will consume them until there is only 1 left, and then will continue to shoot that type of arrow without ever running out. Even if she has additional arrows of poorer quality, she will always use the best arrow available to her, and always in this fashion -- assuming she's using her default bow, of course!)

This is also backed up by forum posts such as this one (admittedly not entirely clear from this example, but was the best I could find).

Note that this doesn't just work for followers -- a great way to get as many arrows as you want is to reverse-pickpocket an arrow onto one of the game's practicing NPC archers, such as the soldiers in Solitude or the guys in the Thieves Guild: Put just one daedric arrow in their inventory, then go sit by the target and collect as many as you have the patience to wait for!

I've also seen Lydia shoot infinite iron arrows with a better bow, but in other situations I've seen her put the bow away because she ran out of arrows -- no idea what the difference is in this case.

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I tried this with one of thieves guild guys. He still shot iron arrows after that and didnt even think about using the more powerful arrow I silently put in his bags. So this does not seem to work. –  Sebastian P.R. Gingter Mar 16 '12 at 16:20
    
@SebastianP.R.Gingter It's sometimes not that straightforward, you're right. Sometimes pickpocketing his iron arrows off of him will do the trick, other times you just have to wait a while before he seems to notice that he's got the new type of arrow at all; in this latter cases, simply waiting for him to stop practicing and go to bed works, as when he returns to practicing he's using the new arrow. –  Kromey Mar 16 '12 at 16:52
    
He did not have an iron arrow in his inventory when pickpocketing him, but then I also didn't wait for that guy to stop practicing. Will try that the next time. Thanks. –  Sebastian P.R. Gingter Mar 18 '12 at 11:04
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Typing player.additem 1397F 5000 into the console will give you 5000 steel arrows, then you can give them to your follower.

I choose steel arrows for balance as to not be OP. Without the followers fletching for themselves I feel this is fair for archer followers, nothing more annoying than your archer running in with a cheap dagger.

Never saw Legolas run out of arrows?

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There is a world of difference between many arrows and infinite arrows. –  kotekzot Sep 17 '12 at 19:22
    
Assuming they stack high enough, you could choose a sufficiently high number such that shooting at full speed they will not run out in your lifetime. That's not much different from infinite! –  Mag Roader Nov 29 '12 at 5:43
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