The brand new Survival Mode mod is out now for Skyrim, downloadable straight from the mod store from within Skyrim Special Edition. In this Skyrim Survival Mode guide, we've got all the tips and tricks you need to tackle the brand new mode, as well as everything you need to know heading back into the game for the first time in a while. Read on for the Skyrim Survival Mode Region Temperatures map, how to stay warm, a guide to hunger, and more.
If this Skyrim guide wasn't what you were after, then rest assured that we have a litany of additional Skyrim guides here at USgamer, including the location of every Dragon Wall in the game, all of which can be found in our Skyrim guides walkthrough hub.
How to Download Skyrim Survival Mode
Even though Skyrim Special Edition has recently been updated, you won't have the Survival Mode straight out of the gate, as you'll need to head into the mods store from the main page of the game in order to download the Survival Mode mod.
Once you're in the mod store, you'll find the Skyrim Survival Mode mod right there in front of you, reduced to the price of nothing for a limited time only (how long it will be free for, we can't say right now). Once you've purchased the mod for free, it'll automatically download straight onto your console, and you're all ready to go once you've loaded up your save file, or started over from scratch.
Skyrim Survival Mode Guide
Like anything else new that's added to Skyrim Special Edition, you'll be hit with a notification as soon as you've loaded your save file, notifying you that Survival Mode has been implemented in the game. You'll have the option at the bottom of the screen to enable Survival Mode, but pause for a second to take in all the changes that the mod throws into the game, all of which you can see just below.
We'll list the full changes that the Survival Mode implements just below, and then we'll expand upon each of these further down the Skyrim Survival Mode guide.
- No fast travel system
- Reduced carry weight
- Level up only when you sleep (hello, Oblivion)
- Clothing has warmth values
- Hunger can reduce your stamina and magicka
- Cold can reduce your health
Skyrim Survival Mode Tips and Tricks
The first thing to take in about the Skyrim Survival Mode is that fast travelling is now no longer an option, meaning that any time you want to travel somewhere, you'll have to keep food and clothing in mind before you set off. In addition to this, you'll now have to keep your warmth levels in mind, whenever you venture out into the wilderness of Skyrim.
Keeping Warm in Skyrim Survival Mode
All your clothing items now include warmth stats, which contribute to how long you can last out in the wilderness before you become cold. We'll get onto the cold factor in a moment, but for now, you'll have to bear in mind which pieces of clothing you should prioritise purely for warmth. For example, the Elven Armor pictured just below actually has less warmth value than the weaker Thalmor Robes, meaning that while the former offers better combat protection, you're going to want to go with the Thamor Robes if you want to stave off the cold.
Once the cold has eventually gotten to your character, if they're out in the world of Skyrim for too long, it'll start to decrease your health limit. Although this happens very slowly at first when the initial notification pops up that 'the air is chilly', the rate at which your health decreases can drastically increase if your character stays cold for too long.
Once you've been out in the cold for too long, you'll eventually get notifications that your character is 'freezing', or 'frostbitten', thus increasing the rate at which your maximum health limit decreases. What can you do to stave this off? For a start, you should always plan ahead on your journeys, making sure you're never left out in the open for too long. In addition to this, you should make sure you take a good amount of food with you wherever you go, at all times.
Hunger in Skyrim Survival Mode
Food can help keep you warm to a degree, but it's mainly used in the Skyrim Survival Mode to prevent hunger from taking a toll on your character. If your character is hungry, the maximum amount of their stamina will gradually decrease, much like how the cold can affect your overall health limit. While there isn't actually a hunger meter in Skyrim Special Edition, there are values on each food item that determine how much your hunger will be reduced by.
Whenever you see a black area at the end of your stamina meter, it means your character is suffering the effects of hunger, and you'll need to eat a food item in order to cure this. This shouldn't be too much of a problem, as you can purchase an assortment of food items from various inns in just about every town and city in Skyrim, provided you've got enough coin. Or, you could just steal food items from within stores, provided you've got a stealth level that's high enough, of course.
Now that we've outlined all new systems introduced in the Skyrim Survival Mode mod, we'll go down all the more precise tips and tricks we have for you:
- If you're starting out new playthrough, make sure to grab some bow and arrows in Helgen, so you can hunt animals for food straight away.
- Hit up Embershard Mine as you're coming out of Helgen for some Salt Piles, which are key to many food recipes in Skyrim.
- If you do need Salt Piles, you can find plenty in Fort Dawnguard.
- You'll want to go with Light Armor if you want to strike a balance between protection and warmth (Fur Armor is the best for this).
- Holding a torch will increase your warmth, while stepping in open water will rapidly decrease your warmth.
- If you do have to go in water, keep in mind that you can find plenty of Salmon in any water source.
- Since diseases are far more lethal in Survival Mode, we'd recommend going with an Argonian if you're going a brand new game.
- Vegetable Soup is a great meal to make, and all it requires is Potato, Cabbage, Leek, and Tomato.
Skyrim Survival Mode Region Temperature Map
Just below, you can find a complete Skyrim Survival Mode map, detailing all the region temperatures, as well as campfire locations, and more. It's an incredibly useful item to have on your journeys around the frozen wilderness, and you should always plan accordingly whenever you're venturing outdoors.
There are all the Skyrim Survival Mode tips and tricks you need to undertake in order to see your character safely through the majority of Skyrim, but if we uncover any additional secrets, we'll be sure to add them to this guide.