If you've been playing a decent amount of Skyrim, you may have noticed that children are annoying. Really annoying. However, while trying to bash one of the little snots into the ground to teach him some manners, I noticed that they're invulnerable to damage.

Obviously, they're witches, or at the very least cheaters. Is there a console command to make them less invincible? If not, is there one that will shut them up?

  • 28
    Honestly, this question needs to be asked for most games. Commented Nov 19, 2011 at 15:32
  • 9
    Unrelenting force off a cliff :D
    – Domocus
    Commented Nov 19, 2011 at 16:05
  • 4
    Pretty sure that without a mod this won't be possible, as I'd always heard it was due to censors/ratings. I guess it's viewed as bad taste, even in a game...
    – fernferret
    Commented Nov 19, 2011 at 16:06
  • 6
    @domocus They'll land on their feet and run right back uphill. Little cockroaches. Commented Nov 19, 2011 at 16:06
  • 22
    Wow. The title change on this question makes me look like a seriously heartless misanthrope. Commented Nov 22, 2011 at 3:44

6 Answers 6


Console commands are too much effort.

Fortunately for us, there's a mod. The Killable Children mod:

Allows the children of Skyrim to die. Affects the Breton, Imperial, Nord and Redguard children.

Poor Mila.

You can download it from Nexus Mods here. (Note that Nexus Mods requires you to sign up for a free account for age verification purposes, I believe.)

  • 1
    I just installed this to make the game more realistic although I might not killed a kid on purpose. But I guess it makes an accidental dragon shout more funny... :) Commented Nov 19, 2011 at 20:14
  • 1
    The orphanage will never be the same...mwa ha ha.
    – Artless
    Commented Nov 20, 2011 at 0:09
  • 13
    Holy heavens. Jesus forgive me. Now I know why it was not included in-game. Mother of God.
    – Aditya M P
    Commented Jan 22, 2012 at 11:57
  • Last night, I was dreaming about a Dead Thrall - the most horrible one I had ever seen.
    – Aditya M P
    Commented Jan 23, 2012 at 1:34
  • Link dead.54321
    – NiteCyper
    Commented Apr 23, 2013 at 11:22

Open the console (` by default).
Type in help <kidsNameGoesHere> 4. You'll see a list of ID's, one of them will say something like:
_NPC (somenumberswillbehere) kid'sname
Next type in SetEssential <thenumbersfrombefore> 0 at the console and hit ↲ Enter.
Replace with the kid's npcID, and he should be killable, unless Bethesda implemented their invulnerability in a unique way.

  • Okay, I think I might be stupid, but I cannot get this to work, no matter what combination of things I type in. It keeps telling me that either I've created a syntax error, I'm missing the parameter "actor base" or that the id I type in is an invalid item for "actor base." Could you maybe toss in an example of a string you typed in for this for a specific NPC?
    – Artless
    Commented Nov 20, 2011 at 0:08
  • 2
    Children aren't (just) Essential, they're invincible. Essential characters simply cannot be killed - but they can be damaged. Invincible characters don't even take damage. The only way to make a character not invincible is via the Creation Kit. However, if it's anything like the Fallout games, you may even have to replace the character models themselves as well. Commented Jun 22, 2017 at 2:32

The mods, Killable children V2 and Killable and Lootable Children allow killing of children, but at the same time, setting as unkillable or 'essential', certain quest-related children, preventing bugs and avoiding missing some quests, which is like the vanilla Skyrim behavior where certain quest-related NPCs can not be killed.

The Killable and Lootable Children mod also allows you to loot children, and makes the 'essential' children, 'non-essential' when their related quests are finished.

The mod in action.


Just click on the person or child while your console is open (~) then type SetEssential 0. Don't type npcid manually or you'll get errors most of the time. I have noticed that a lot of npcids are different between the 360 and PC version while some are still the same, so just click to target then type command without the need for the npcid specification.

  • First, SetEssential only works on the BaseID, not the RefID (you have to use: help "<npc name>" to get the BaseID). Second, although children may be essential, it's generally irrelevant - as they're all invincible. Meaning, unlike essential characters, they can't even be damaged. To change that you need to use the CK to create a mod. Commented Jun 22, 2017 at 2:35

You can kill children in the PC version of skyrim by changing their races in the setrace commend. once you change them you can be able to kill them with the kill command to not get a bounty. this works if you want to kidnap a child WITHOUT teleporting. or you can download a mod that doesnt require doing this process.


Just dual wield the spell "Raise Zombie" and cast it on the kid, they just crumble into ash.

  • ha ha that can't happen
    – Jim
    Commented Oct 20, 2015 at 3:25

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