In Skyrim, scrolls are an alternative to the magical spells in the game. They are a one-time-use item that allows players to use magic without depleting their Magicka. They’re basically like a poor man’s magical powers.
Scrolls are often lesser-used because of the existence of magical spells. Spells are much more efficient, re-castable, and permanent, making the whole purpose of the scroll meaningless.
Although lesser-used, they’re still a viable option to help you get out of sticky situations. For example, when you don’t have enough healing items or Magicka to deal with your enemies.
Scroll works pretty much like any other magical spell. You can use scrolls by equipping them from your inventory and casting them like a normal spell.
But first, you need to acquire them and scrolls are normally found in many locations throughout the game. You can find scrolls in tombs, dungeons and from enemies. Some scrolls can also be purchased from merchants like Court Wizards and General Goods Stores. Then,
- Open your Inventory and switch to the Scrolls tab.
- Equip the scroll that you want to use. Depending on the scroll’s type, you might need to use both of your hands to cast them.
- Press the melee button to ready up the scroll that you’ve just equipped. You should also see the special effects of the scroll on your hand.
- Press and hold the attack button to charge the spell and release it in order to cast the spell. Note: High-tier scrolls have longer windup time, whereas casting speed for low-tier scrolls is instantaneous.
Types of Scrolls in Skyrim
There are mainly three types of scrolls in the game. There’s the standard scroll which contains regular magical spells.
The unique scrolls are tied to the Shalidor’s Insights questline, which you must complete in order to acquire them.
The spider scrolls are a later addition to the game that adds magical damage-dealing spiders.
The first is the usual type of scroll. They include some standard spells from the Alteration, Illusion, Restoration, Destruction, and Conjuration categories.
For example, Scroll of Conjure Familiar, Scroll of Fireball, Scroll of Fast Healing, Scroll of Dragonhide, Scroll of Candlelight, etc.
You can get these scrolls as random loot while playing the game or buy them from wizard merchants.
While the majority of the scroll are relatively easy to obtain, some of the rarer ones are locked in the Apocrypha dimension, which you can access by getting Black Books.
There are six unique scrolls that you can possibly get after completing the Shalidor’s Insights questline from Urag gro-Shub. At the end of the quest, you’ll get three copies of a scroll.
Using any of these scrolls can make a particular type of spell-casting more efficient and stronger for a limited period of time.
- For example, using Shalidor’s Insights: Restoration scroll will increase the restoration % by double while cutting the Magicka cost by half.
- Likewise, the Shalidor’s Insights: Conjuration scroll increases the duration of your summons by 50% while lowering the summoning Magicka cost by 50%.
Note: J’zargo’s Flame Cloak Scroll is also a unique scroll that cloaks the caster in flames and deals 10-point damage to enemies that are close by.
These are quite different from all the other scrolls. While the rest of the scroll focuses on magical efficiency and potency, the spider scroll focuses on dealing more elemental and magical damage to your enemies.
Another unique aspect about these scrolls is that you can also craft them at the Imbuing Chamber in the White Ridge Barrow, Solstheim.
What Are the Best Scrolls in the Game?
It’s quite difficult to choose the best ones out of 90 different types of scrolls in the game. And considering the fact that you could easily replace these scrolls with their magical spells counterparts, it might seem that they serve no purpose.
However, keeping a few useful scrolls in your inventory is still a good idea, as they can come in clutch when you’ve run out of Magicka during tough combats.
Or when you want to avoid casting spell that uses up too much Magicka.
We’ve listed some of the best scrolls the game has to offer below.
Scroll of Mass Paralysis
The Paralysis effect is by far the most useful magical effect you can apply to your enemy.
As the name suggests, it renders all the enemies within the vicinity useless for ten seconds, giving you enough time to rethink your fighting strategy or to retreat from battle.
Scroll of Dragonhide
This scroll is more suited for the melee class player as it gives them a whopping 90% physical damage reduction bonus on top of their armor total for 30 seconds.
Or you can even increase your armor total by 35 points with the Scroll of Ebonyflesh.
Scroll of Fire Storm
If you want to cast the absolute best damage-dealing spell without using your Magicka, then you should definitely look for the Scroll of Fire Storm.
Casting the spell does a fiery explosion dealing 75-point damage spread across a wide radius.
Alternatively, you can get the Scroll of Blizzard or the Scroll of Lightning Storm to deal great damage but with different elements.
Scroll of Guardian Circle
The Scroll of Guardian Circle can save you and your followers’ lives in situations where you are out of healing items and Magicka.
Using this scroll can cast a magical circle that heals you for 20 points per second while repelling the undead up to level 35.
While exploding and jumping spiders deal a considerable amount of splash damage, the cloaked spiders are by far the most powerful types in the game.
They do not explode but can damage a group of enemies over time. I.e., Poison Cloaked Spider.
Other good spider scrolls are the glowing spider and the pack spider. The glowing spider can be very useful in the dark spaces of the dungeon, whereas the pack spider can carry some of your equipment, helping you out when you’re encumbered.
Just make sure to keep track of them to prevent them from getting squashed by the enemies.