For the original game, see The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Special Edition is a 2016 remaster of the 2011 game The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, the fifth installment of The Elder Scrolls series. It was released for PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4 on October 28th 2016.[1]

Steam users who already owned all of the game's DLC, or owned the Legendary Edition, received a free copy of the remaster.[2]


Graphical enhancements

Several graphical features of Skyrim were enhanced with the Special Edition, as follows:[3]

  • Remastered art and effects
  • Volumetric lighting (“God Rays”)
  • Dynamic Depth of Field
  • Screen-space reflections
  • New snow and water shaders

The Special Edition also offers native 4K support for both PC and the PS4 Pro.[4]

Console mods

In September 2016, Bethesda announced that Sony had blocked user-created mods from coming to the PS4 version of the game.[5] However, in October 2016, they stated that Sony had rescinded their block and would allow the usage of player-made mods in the game, and explained the process by which players could create mods on console:[4]

Mods on PlayStation 4 will allow you to modify and create your own content by using our Creation Kit available here. You will not be able to upload external assets with your PlayStation 4 mods, but you will be able to use any assets that come with the game, as most mods do. By creating a account, you’ll be able to browse and try mods right from within the game.[4]

Other improvements

Bethesda employee Matt Grandstaff stated on Twitter that the Special Edition would be 64-bit.[6] The Special Edition is also the first game in the series to offer use of the Creation Club to purchase mods licensed by Bethesda.[7]


The Special Edition did indeed offer slight graphical improvements over the original game, as demonstrated by PC Gamer.[8] As of October 29th, 2016, the game has a 60% ("Mixed") rating on Steam. Many reviewers stated that the game did not perform well on their systems.[9]

On October 28th, 2016, a post on /r/skyrimmods on reddit indicated that the Special Edition's audio quality was noticeably worse than in the original.[10] Several online gaming journals also cited this post in articles of their own.[11][12] Bethesda has since confirmed that they are looking to fix this issue by the following week.[13]

System requirements

The following are the official system requirements for the Skyrim – Special Edition:[3]


  • Windows 7/8.1/10 (64-bit Version)
  • Intel i5-750/AMD Phenom II X4-945.
  • 8GB of ram.
  • 12 GB free HDD space
  • NVIDIA GTX 470 1GB /AMD HD 7870 2GB


  • Windows 7/8.1/10 (64-bit Version)
  • Intel i5-2400/AMD FX-8320.
  • 8GB of ram.
  • 12 GB free HDD space
  • NVIDIA GTX 780 3GB /AMD R9 290 4GB

Console storage needs


  • 20 GB (North America)
  • 33 GB (Europe)

Xbox One

  • 17 GB (North America)
  • 25 GB (Europe)




Start a Discussion Discussions about The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Special Edition

  • Skyrim and Skyrim SE: Postpone Dawnguard questline and vampire attacks

    2 messages
    • So, having purchased Skyrim SE, and playing a lot of different characters, I got tired of being forced to either play through Dawnguard bef...
    • Cool! While I like the expansion, I definetly have seen the frustration that comes from that part of it. In too many games have I lost my favor...
  • What are the best mods to use?

    2 messages
    • I have PC version and I just wanted to know what mods will make the game look a lot more... ''realistic'' since I've b...
    • I personally don't use any ENB mods, however I do recommend a mod called Immersive Sounds - Compendium. It overhauls almost all of the so...