Those trained to use Heavy Armor make more effective use of Iron, Steel, Dwarven, Orcish, Ebony, and Daedric armors.
Heavy Armor is a skill in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim and is one of the six skills that falls under The Warrior play-style. Heavy Armor skill is raised by the use of certain kinds of armor that the in-game character can equip. Heavy armor typically weighs more than light armor, injuring speed and carrying capacity at the offset of added protection. Penalties to speed and carrying capacity can be countered using The Steed Stone or by consuming Potions of Carry Weight.
Books and quests
These books permanently raise the Heavy Armor skill:
- 2920, MidYear, v6
- Hallgerd's Tale
- Orsinium and the Orcs
- The Knights of the Nine
- Oghma Infinium - choosing the "Path of the Warrior" increases all combat-oriented skills by 5, including Heavy Armor.
These quests permanently raise the Heavy Armor skill:
- Kill bandit leader for Brunwulf Free-Winter in Windhelm.
- Gharol (Expert): Dushnikh Yal in The Reach.
- Farkas of The Companions (Master): Jorrvaskr, or the training area behind it, in Whiterun. Requires membership into The Companions.
- Isran of the Dawnguard (Master): Fort Dawnguard, in Dayspring Canyon. Requires membership into the Dawnguard, and obviously the Dawnguard expansion pack must be downloaded.
- Hermir Strong-Heart is listed as a trainer, but does not have a dialogue option for training.
The following are the confirmed heavy armors that benefit from this skill:
The Armors listed here are Heavy Armors that are able to be crafted by the player given the appropriate perk.
- Iron - Shield, Helmet, Armor, Gauntlets, Boots
- Ancient Nord Armor - Helmet, Armor, Gauntlets, Boots
- Imperial Armor - Shield, Helmet, Armor, Bracers, Boots
- Steel Armor - Shield, Helmet, Armor, Gauntlets, Boots
- Steel Plate Armor - Helmet, Armor, Gauntlets, Boots
- Dwarven - Shield, Helmet, Armor, Gauntlets, Boots
- Orcish - Shield, Helmet, Armor, Gauntlets, Boots
- Ebony - Shield, Helmet, Armor, Gauntlets, Boots
- Daedric - Shield, Helmet, Armor, Gauntlets, Boots
- Dragonplate - Shield, Helmet, Armor, Gauntlets, Boots
The following Armors are Heavy Armors that are either given to the player as a quest reward, bought, or found randomly throughout the world. They may or may not be unique.
- Blades Armor - Shield, Helmet, Armor, Gauntlets, Boots
- Ebony Mail - Chest
- Falmer Armor - Shield, Helmet, Armor, Gauntlets, Boots
- Falmer Hardened Armor, Helm, Armor, Gauntlets, Boots
- General Tullius' Armor - Chest
- The Jagged Crown - Helmet
- Masque of Clavicus Vile - Helmet
- Spellbreaker - Shield
- Targe of the Blooded - Shield
- Wolf Armor - Helmet, Armor, Gauntlets, Boots
Ebony Mail is a heavy armor piece, but it is not classified as part of the ebony armor set. While Orcish Armor is stronger than Dwarven Armor, Dwarven weapons deal more damage than Orcish weapons as the same with Dragon Armor and Daedric Armor.
The following are the perks that become available to select as the skill is leveled up
|Juggernaut (5)||Heavy Armor 20/ 40/ 60/ 80||Increases armor rating for Heavy Armor by 20% (+20% per additional rank)|
|Fists of Steel||Heavy Armor 30, Juggernaut||Unarmed attacks with Heavy Armor gauntlets do their base armor rating in extra damage. Sneak attack bonus is two times the damage.|
|Well Fitted||Heavy Armor 30, Juggernaut||25% armor bonus if wearing all Heavy Armor: head, chest, hands, feet|
|Cushioned||Heavy Armor 50, Fists of Steel||Half damage from falling if wearing all Heavy Armor: head, chest, hands, feet
Also reduces damage from environmental physics such as flying debris launched into the air by force shouts or other enemy attacks.
|Tower of Strength||Heavy Armor 50, Well Fitted||50% less stagger when wearing only Heavy Armor
Force Without Effort, provides an additional 25% stagger reduction.
|Conditioning||Heavy Armor 70, Cushioned||Wearing Heavy armor no longer affects how much stamina is used when sprinting. Any heavy armor worn no longer counts towards the carry weight.|
|Matching Set||Heavy Armor 70, Tower of Strength||
Additional 25% armor bonus if wearing a matched set of Heavy Armor
|Reflect Blows||Heavy Armor 100, Matching Set||10% chance to reflect melee damage back to the enemy while wearing all Heavy Armor: head, chest, hands, feet|
There are two main ways to level heavy armor, besides using trainers.
- "Regular wear and tear" - Just wear heavy armor while exploring and adventuring. Hits taken while wearing Heavy Armor increases skill level.
- "Punching Bag" – Intentionally allow strikes to land successfully over and over again to level the skill.
Skill experience is calculated based on the attack strength of the foe. For example, taking multiple attacks from a Skeever or Wolf levels Heavy Armor at a significantly slower rate than blows from Giants or Mammoths would. Being the victim of power attacks also grants more experience than a standard attack.
The key to leveling Heavy Armor is to find foes that will not kill the trainer, but allows a large volume of attacks to be performed. An example of this would be: having level 65 Heavy Armor and taking strikes from a Giant's Club. Two or three attacks can be sustained at this level. Allow the attacks to land successfully, cast Restoration spells to regain health and repeat the process. This also helps level up Restoration.