Here’s the obligatory Final Thoughts wrapup post about Shenner’s Skyrim run!
No contest: Rulnik, with honorable mention to Gogh. Rulnik had a lot going for him just because he was a) a new character I hadn’t dealt with before, and b) a very commendably powerful mage, which made him excellent backup for a warrior character like Shenner.
But I really adored Gogh, too. Enough that even after dismissing him back to his cave once, I felt guilty about that and got him back!
Whiterun still reigns supreme, here. None of the rest of the cities felt like a particular draw while playing Shenner.
Favorite Daedric Quest
At least in terms of the vanilla Daedric quests, none of them felt particularly relevant to Shenner. The weapons I wound up favoring with her were ones that came out of AE quests! But for the original vanilla Daedric quests, the one most meaningful to her was probably the one to get Dawnbreaker.
Favorite Non-Daedric Plot
In previous playthroughs I made this section of the post be my favorite main game plot that wasn’t specifically for getting a Daedric artifact.
This time through, since this was the first time I ran the Anniversary Edition, the parts I really liked the most about the playthrough were definitely AE plots. Highest honors go to Ghosts of the Tribunal, which in addition to being complex and interesting also gave me good RP fodder for Shenner’s narrative.
My second tier favorites: Saints and Seducers and The Cause, again because interesting, complex, and challenging.
- The Bittercup plot which led to me getting Rulnik as a follower
- The Goblins plot which led to getting Gogh
- The Wild Horses content that led me to getting my unicorn, because holy crap, having an unkillable unicorn as my mount was hands down one of my favorite things about this run!
- The assassination plot in Whiterun that led to me getting the Bow of Shadows, because I love, love, loves me some Bow of Shadows
- The chain of quests involved with the Fishing content, which I wound up enjoying way more than I expected when I started
Again, the AE content wins out here, since the armors I favored the most with Shenner were ones that I got as part of running the AE. Top contenders: studded dragonscale, Remnant, and Ebony Spell Knight.
Bow! Of! Shadows! 😀
Favorite Named Dragon
Paarthurnax and Durnehviir remain the dragon kings!
Things I Actively Disliked
Not much, actually? I can’t think of a single thing in this playthrough that I actively didn’t like. Several things I was ambivalent about, yes, but that’s not the same as active dislike.
(More details on what I was ambivalent about can be found in my general writeup on the AE, so I won’t reproduce those thoughts here.)
Things I Wish I’d Done Differently
I tried flipping the order in which I run Dawnguard and Dragonborn for Shenner’s playthrough. In retrospect, I don’t think I like it. While having the dremora merchant available to me in the Forgotten Vale was certainly helpful, by and large I feel like the escalation of stakes just works better for me if Dawnguard goes first.
Though as I write this, I find myself considering whether I want to try doing it like I did with Alarrah’s playthrough again–finishing the main plot, then doing Dawnguard and Dragonborn. I feel like that might be worth another look.
And Now, Some Stats
- As of her final session, Shenner had 255,099 gold.
- She was thane of every hold except Eastmarch.
- She owned the following properties:
- In Whiterun Hold: Breezehome, Tundra Homestead, Goldenhills Plantation
- In the Rift: Honeyside, Shadowfoot Sanctum
- In Falkreath Hold: Lakeview Manor
- In Winterhold: Bloodchill Cavern
- In Haafingar: Proudspire Manor
- In Hjaalmarch: Windstad Manor, Myrwatch
- In the Pale: Heljarchen Hall
- In the Reach: Vlindrel Hall, Hendraheim
- Other: Severin Manor, Dead Man’s Dread
- She was a member of the Bards College in Solitude
- She was Arch-Mage of the College of Winterhold
- She did not choose a side in the civil war
Not terribly surprisingly, Shenner’s best skills were her combat ones. I didn’t do nearly as much magic with her, and she was not much for stealth, either. I typically only did Sneak with her when necessary.
This is not to say that she was completely useless at magic–I did use it regularly enough that several of her magic stats weren’t that bad, and she did make it to being able to conjure up a dremora lord by the end of her run!
I did have Shenner alternate between Light and Heavy armor, and leaned more towards Heavy Armor with her at the end just because that’s where the stats had gone after a few rounds of setting things Legendary. And I did give Two-handed a good faith try with her, though after this many rounds of playing Skyrim, I can definitely say that I prefer a one-handed weapon + spell hand approach, or else sword in right hand, dagger in left. I did the dual wielding thing fairly regularly with Shenner, too.
(Side note: these videos were taken with OBS installed on my Steam Deck, since I had to figure out a way to capture videos. This run not being on the Switch meant that I didn’t have an equivalent “hit this button to get the last 30 seconds of what just happened in the game” functionality!)
And now, here’s the video for Shenner’s stats.
Her stats claim she only owns 5 houses, which is standard, I know by now–those houses being Breezehome, Proudspire, Vlindrel Hall, Honeyside, and Severin Manor. Now I know, after Shenner’s run, that none of the houses you can get via the AE content increment this stat either.
I did surprisingly less gathering of Shouts with Shenner. You’ll note that I had 77 dragon souls collected in these stats, but only 26 Shouts learned, and only 12 mastered. I think I still had over 40 unused dragon souls! I didn’t even finish out some of the Shouts I historically use most often, like Become Ethereal and Whirlwind Sprint.
Pretty sure Shenner’s bounty was because of the Forsworn Conspiracy plot? I didn’t have any other bounty that I know of other than for that.
LOL, I actually pickpocketed something? I don’t even remember what it would have been. 😀
And Shenner didn’t murder a single person! All her kills were good and proper combat as befits a warrior.
Two other things I want to call out here.
One: playing Shenner’s run across three different systems, my old PC, my Steam Deck, and the Win11 VM on my new MacBook, made the experience of playing her someone scattered. But boy howdy am I delighted with the bump up in visual beauty and general effectiveness of game play once I jumped over to the Deck, and later to the Win11 VM as well.
Two: all my previous playthroughs averaged about three months in length. Shenner’s playthrough officially started on 5/17 and ended last night, 11/19. Roughly six months. But that’s deceptive, because in the time that I played Shenner, I also started playing Morrowind and Elder Scrolls Online. So that pulled out the length of her playthrough quite a bit.
Since I started paying more active attention to session numbers during Shenner’s playthrough (in order to keep track of where screenshots go in my file structure), I know Shenner had a total of 75 play sessions. Which puts her at more like two and a half months of play time, and therefore under average.
I didn’t play some of the larger plotlines my longer playthroughs do–notably, the Thieves Guild. And I did wind up skipping a lot of places that I have historically spent a lot of time in, in no small part because I was very focused on playing the AE stuff. But I didn’t even do all of the AE stuff either, just because at the very end of her run, I decided I wanted to save at least some of it for later.
Onward to playing Harrowhark, renegade Imperial, and probable future vampire and necromancer! 😉