I read some good hints in this question, but I am a warrior. I don't want to run around the giant throwing him dozens of arrows, I want to fight him face to face, mace to mace.

I am level 25 now, specialized in 1-hand combat, shield and heavy armor. Is it possible to challenge a giant in melee combat and win? What equipment should I use that can help me against giants, or better yet, what skills can help me out here?


12 Answers 12


You say "Mace to Mace", I prefer "Mace to Face" :D

2 most important things for melee against a giant:

  1. Dance in and out of range before he strikes
  2. Use shield attacks to interrupt his power attacks

Without very high damage absorption (armour >500 etc) on a high difficulty multiplier you will hurt if he gets a good hit on you, so controlling the combat and ensuring you aren't flanked by a second giant is important.

If you still have trouble then 3) Have decent block absorption (skill, perks and possibly enchanted block) -> only a few % of damage taken.

Easy money :)

[ Mages have no problem with them with impact, And rogues can find a sneaky rock to stand on ]


I don't know about level 25, but at level 28 I received a few bounties to kill giants.

I found that if I shot a giant with a frostbite venom arrow (with sneak damage) and then charged him with my Shield of Solitude, and did a power bash every time he swung, along with a sword which had the "Absorb health" enchantment, I was able to defeat the giant , even if it hit me twice. Just make sure there are no other giants or mamoths around, and that you keep your stamina up.

This was with Heavy Armor and a rating of 350+ armor (from my smithing orcish armor and making it epic)

This was without a follower.


Melee killing giants requires a simple technique you can get with practice. When the giant charges you, charge him but pass to the side of him, the giant will take a swing and pause. Turn around and slash him. When the giant turns to face you charge him again and pass by, repeat. Should only take 2-4 times.


Giants are boring by level 30 with ~400 armor rating and 4 perk points in Armsman or Barbarian. 4 or 5 hits to kill them, they need 9 or 10 hits to kill me. I don't even potion, poison, heal, shout, block or use allies.

Look, armor rating works against opponents like giants that only do physical damage. Take your awesome blacksmith'd armor, put an Oakflesh on top of it and trade blows.


Lead with the Marked for Death shout if you aren't going to sneak attack it.


I think it's possible to survive a giant attack without being sent to the stratosphere, if you're moving (strafing) and you have enough armor rating for your level.

As a good general rule first I'd double check that I have the best weapons and armor for my level. If you're not smithing or enchanting check the merchants for better enchants. Level scaling can sometimes make encounters very frustrating.

With this in mind you could look into perks and enchants that work well without you having to stay toe to toe all the time:

  • Absorb Health is very helpful. I have a Glass Mace with +15 Absorb Health and it makes dragon fights much easier. Even one that I enchanted myself with only +5 Absorb Health to have at least 50 charges was very helpful. No need to gulp any potions. It seems that landing a critical hit gives you more health in return (I've had sometimes much more health left than expected at the end of a fight, which I assume was related to the critical hits, maybe someone else can confirm this?).
  • Get the Critical Charge perk. Land a power attack while sprinting, then keep sprinting past the giant, while your Absorb Health weapon keeps you in shape.

I also prefer to fight toe to toe, and don't want to use tricks related to pathing. But with that said, nothing wrong with softening up your giant with a few unsavory arrows (perhaps coating them with a health or stamina regen poison), until they are at close range.

EDIT: Well I confirm this works although I suspect they are also much easier past level 30. Got hit a few times for ~20% health damage. Used Critical Charge, then ran while casting the quick healing, then turned back, rinse-repeat. At level 38 it took 4-5 hits.

If you really want to stay in melee I guess you could try a Health Regen potion plus a max health increase potion, best armor and weapon available + smithing improvements... but if you run you can take two giants at once :)


Its all about beeing able to take 1 hit, if you survie just spam potions to fill your hp up again. I managed to kill a giant without follower around lvl 22, with glass armor, dual swords and Oakflesh. It isn't a mission impossible to do.


I did it by luring the giant to a river, and using fire breath (dragon shout) and flames (destruction spell). You can kill one if you have learned the shout to call a dragon.


Here's how I take giants down with melee:

  1. Get a decent sword (steel will do)

  2. Enchant it with absorb stamina or drain stamina

  3. Get the critical charge perk

  4. use only light armor and any kind of heavy shield

  5. also make sure you have a midget character


First off you will need to provoke the giant by shooting at it or whatever you can do to get him angry.Next when he is charging at you charge straight towards him and do a power attack when your close enough and then go through his legs.Keep running forward for 2 seconds and then stop and wait for him to turn around and figure out what just happened.Rinse and repeat until you have a knocked out giant or a dead one.

If hes knocked out: uneguip your weapons and keep punching him for fun.

If hes dead: good for you

Warning:It takes a bit of practice to get the timing right.

  • Why only light armor? Why a heavy shield?
    – kotekzot
    Commented Nov 2, 2012 at 19:38

If you're an Orc, you can kill it at level 1. The first time I was lvl 6 light armor + 2 handed, I snuck up on it, activated Berserker Rage and sneak power attacked it, then just wailed on it. The second time was level 1 with full iron + banded iron armor, and steel war axe, both un-improved and not enchanted. I just activated berserk mode and rained blows on it, bashing sometimes when it raised a club or fist. That time, I used minor health potions and minor stam potions. I think both times I tried to stay behind it. Hope this helps!


I just used a nord to make the giant flee. The I slashed it with dual wield battle axe for bleededing affect nd by da time it was coming back to get me, all those bleededing affects stacked just drained its health quickly on its own. I was lvl 16.


First you need to hire Marcurio in Riften, then make a giant aggro you and let Marcurio shower the giant in spells.

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