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The Tupper
02-12-2011, 10:10 PM
Hello all.

I acquired Faendal as a companion in Riverwood very early on in my exploration of the game. Does anybody know if other followers differ in their abilities (beyond aesthetics and disposition) to make it worth my while swapping him out or are they all basically angry pack mules?

BTW - despite Steam saying I have logged more that 80 hours (!) I still haven't begun the main quest line, so would appreciate as few spoilers as is possible.

Thanks in advance.

TT

Skalpadda
02-12-2011, 10:17 PM
Yes, different companions will differ a great deal. There are thieves, assassins, warriors, archers, mages and so on. Ideally you want to find one that complements your fighting style, for example if you're an archer you might not want a melee companion who runs in the way of your arrows all the time.

Also keep in mind that you can give your companion better gear which will make them both more durable and able to deal more damage (as well as other possibilities such as making them better at sneak).

The Tupper
02-12-2011, 10:50 PM
Cool. I've already stacked whatever-his-name-is (I had to look his name up for the original post - I have no attachment to him) with good armour etc. My own character is a (frankly half-arsed) combination of light armour wearing hack n'slasher and potion-wielding mage who uses mid-range destruction spells like they're going out of fashion.

Is there any way to check prospective companions' individual stats within the game (without mods), or should I take my cue from what they are wearing and what they say when I meet them? I'm fine either way.

Vexing Vision
02-12-2011, 11:11 PM
Each companion basically lets you know in advance what they're capable of. At least you are able to ask most of them what they're able to do for you. I think they're able to train just as you do (my mage companion appears to become more and more proficient with the two-handed mana-draining sword I crafted for her), only without the perks. Their skills determine their AI - mercenaries you can hire in taverns and housecarls will prefer melee, archers and mages tend to keep their distance unless they're equipped with weaponry.

Kadayi
02-12-2011, 11:34 PM
I picked up Uthgerd from the Inn in Whiterun early on (you just have to beat her in a brawl to recruit her)and essentially the pair of us run around in fancy platemail battering the shit out of anything we encounter with 2 handed weapons (blocking is for pussies): -

http://cloud.steampowered.com/ugc/649872899367533003/00F570628DA55168AF08FAA42CBB62FBB580D705/

She's pretty good in a fight and makes for a decent loot mule. Plus unlike Lydia she doesn't sound like everything is a terrible burden whenever you need her to do your bidding.

Drake Sigar
03-12-2011, 12:08 AM
I've noticed Lydia resets to her default armour if I tell her to bugger off home. Taking her weapon then giving it back makes her change again.


I picked up Uthgerd from the Inn in Whiterun early on (you just have to beat her in a brawl to recruit her).
I met my wife the same way.

PeteC
03-12-2011, 12:25 AM
I've still got Uthgerd myself. 50 odd hours in and still haven't met Lydia.

Do the companions have different encumbrance limits? Uthgerd seems to be able to carry three times as much as me. Wouldn't want to get rid of her for someone who can't carry as much as she can. She's far more useful as a pack mule than as a warrior.

Kadayi
03-12-2011, 12:55 AM
I've still got Uthgerd myself. 50 odd hours in and still haven't met Lydia.

The Jarl of Whiterun appoints her to you as a Housecarl once you've completed one of the early main quests (either killing the dragon, or retrieving the stone tablets for the Court Mage from a Drangr infested tomb). If you've brought Breezehome you should find her loitering around upstairs.


Do the companions have different encumbrance limits? Uthgerd seems to be able to carry three times as much as me.

I'm curious about this myself. Part of the reason I've not swapped her out is because she seems to have an absurd encumberance limit. Damn useful for carry all those heavy Dwemer parts.

DigitalSignalX
03-12-2011, 01:05 AM
I've used 4 followers to date, the first and favorite by far my dear departed Lydia who's lack of trap avoidance skill cost her the ultimate price.

Eola, a former dinner date who's magic use and summoning was interesting to try out, but after a while the "ring bearer" (lol) comments and that crazy looking eye she had started to wear on me. I randomly dismissed her for

Areanea, the last Azura follower who's piss-poor personalty probably drove the rest off, not to mention having a shrine on top of a nearly inaccessible mountain that is in a constant blizzard. When her bitching at me for healing her got tiresome, I told her to wait somewhere and promptly forgot where. After a couple of days she returned to her emotional frozen place, and I picked up

Kharjo, a kajiit warrior who can sneak pretty well and is superb with an axe and shield. He's also got the best personalty so far, sort of a wise cracking puss n' boots. I'm liking him a lot, and it's clear he's right in line with my rogue's decisions to do mostly good, but also bad when it's really fun.

Skalpadda
03-12-2011, 01:54 AM
I've grown to like Lydia and now think of her more as sarcastically chummy rather than passive aggressive and annoying. With a stack of health potions and a set of upgraded Ebony armour and weapons with health and elemental protection enchants she just does not give a shit any more and will happily let anything from dragons to whole families of snow bears kick her in the face all day without going down.

Meanwhile, my character is wearing some sort of feather bikini that barely protects against harsh language and has to skulk in shadows and run away a lot. Lydia the Housecarl is the hero who boldly stands her ground against overwhelming odds while Dovahkiin, Dragonborn, is a thieving coward who will stab people in the back and flee from anything resembling a fair fight.

I can sort of understand why she resents having to carry all my stolen loot around.

The Tupper
03-12-2011, 02:15 AM
I've used 4 followers to date, the first and favorite by far my dear departed Lydia who's lack of trap avoidance skill cost her the ultimate price...
Wow. My guy has no discernible personality whatsoever. I think it's worth me trying a change.

Do discarded companions go back to their previous lives - no doubt pining for lost days of adventure with The Tupper and his silky-maned heroism - or do they run off with some Flash Harry in his pimped-up plate armour?

Basically, are they amenable to a box of chocolates and a half-hearted apology if my new companion doesn't cut the mustard?

PS: DigitalSignalX: your entire post was amusing and informative. I decided, for brevity, to cut the quote down in my response. Thanks, though.

Kadayi
03-12-2011, 03:04 AM
Wow. My guy has no discernible personality whatsoever. I think it's worth me trying a change.

Do discarded companions go back to their previous lives - no doubt pining for lost days of adventure with The Tupper and his silky-maned heroism - or do they run off with some Flash Harry in his pimped-up plate armour?

Basically, are they amenable to a box of chocolates and a half-hearted apology if my new companion doesn't cut the mustard?

PS: DigitalSignalX: your entire post was amusing and informative. I decided, for brevity, to cut the quote down in my response. Thanks, though.

From my experience with Uthgerd, if they leave your service for any reason they'll basically head back to wherever you originally met them (assuming it wasn't down a dungeon or some such). They retain all the equipment that you've given them, but they'll default back to their original appearance. You just need to speak to them to get them to join you again. There's no pouting and gifts of chocolates necessary.

Theblazeuk
03-12-2011, 03:26 AM
Lydia saved me from a Chaurus in the first Falmer cave I wandered into, but sadly fell to the other four that came round the corner. I quickly grabbed the loot I'd pulled off her and ran like hell.

Then I got Fjairo (or something) from the Mage's college, who was happy to join me once I'd tested out his suicidal anti-undead spell. He was a nice complement to my all-round skills though a little low on magicka to be of much use. Plus his purry voice was kind of soothing, even if he was a bit of smug dick. Sadly but entertainingly his arrogance belied a fatal flaw: a complete lack of balance. As we skirmished with bandits on the way to Solitude, he bravely charged down a slope and seemingly tripped, fell and broke his neck, sliding to a messy end at the bottom of the hill.

After that I started to get a bit wary of companions. They only die on you after all. But having heard so much about the lass from the pub in Whitehold, I gave her a chance to join me. We got two steps into one of the cairns and a restless draugr knocked her down, and a stray bit of frost damage one of them directed my way splashed onto her and killed her.

Now I have the dark elf from Azura's shrine, whose conjuration abilities mean we're never alone and coupled with a very powerful staff I gave her, she's generally far more useful than I am. I'm hoping if I give her raise zombie she'll be able to start casting that regularly as well...

The Tupper
03-12-2011, 04:00 AM
Ha! Fantastic responses. I'll definitely upgrade to a new buddy.

As I say, I've become associated with that bloke from Riverwood who practically threw himself at me in a somewhat undignified manner rather than the girl he'd got himself entangled with - whom I had saved from an even less savoury partnership.

Any further tips on companions would be welcome, but I'd appreciate nothing too spoilerific.

Skalpadda
03-12-2011, 04:28 AM
If you do the Companions quests there are quite a few followers available afterwards. Most notable is probably Aela the Huntress who is a very good sidekick to a thief or assassin character. She's a ranged sneaky type, so she'll stay quite a bit behind you, won't charge and won't get in the way in combat. There are also other things that are pretty cool about her but that'd be spoilers for the quests she's involved in :)

Kadayi
03-12-2011, 12:00 PM
After that I started to get a bit wary of companions. They only die on you after all. But having heard so much about the lass from the pub in Whitehold, I gave her a chance to join me. We got two steps into one of the cairns and a restless draugr knocked her down, and a stray bit of frost damage one of them directed my way splashed onto her and killed her.

Weird. Are you playing on a hard difficulty setting or some such? We've been through about a dozen Drangr tombs (and more besides) and she's slicing through them like a knife through butter (helped by the enchanted burning greatsword I made for her though). She's even quite happy to get stuck in with me taking down Dragons at close quarters. Hell, yesterday she got thrown into orbit by a giants club (though I must admit I thought that was game over tbh) only to come running back about 2 minutes later after I'd fatally hacked away his kneecaps.

Zorganist
03-12-2011, 12:55 PM
I don't think anyone's mentioned this, but companions don't gain levels, they will remain at the same level you were when you hired them. I'm not sure whether firing/re-hiring causes them to go up though.

I had Lydia initially, but soon became bored of her constantly running in front of my arrows and mace-swings, and frustrated at her snarky remark every time I tried to make her carry my loot. Although she did get stuck in the side of a mountain once, keeping a dragon distracted whilst I killed it.

After I fired her I hired Erik the Slayer, who has been my longest-serving companion so far. He had a really endearing way of charging recklessly towards anything that moved, but was, unfortunately, killed by some well-equipped bandits; by the time I had dismounted my horse and begun to fight them, he was already dead.

Then I spent a while on my own until I rescued Deertheekus from a Falmer cave, but after a few hours I went back to his home town and swapped him out for Anneke Crag-Jumper, although I think I might go and get him back sometime. An Argonian would look more threatening than a Nord in my Thieve's Guild activities.

None of my companions have been massively useless, but it's a bit dissapointing that they don't have the same depth of dialogue options that the companions in F:NV had; it would be nice to be able to have a conversation with one that went further than "carry this" or "wait over there". My horses have proven to be fairly unreliable, and my last one died trying to assault a fortress in Eastmarch. It's a good job that the stable-owner in Markarth doesn't ask too many questions when I keep going back to buy mounts from him.

orcane
03-12-2011, 03:08 PM
I don't think anyone's mentioned this, but companions don't gain levels, they will remain at the same level you were when you hired them. I'm not sure whether firing/re-hiring causes them to go up though.
I think they're actually supposed to auto-level with you, but sometimes don't because they're bugged (color me surprised).

Also, how do you guys lose your companions in combat, aren't they all just cowering down until the fights are over?

Skalpadda
03-12-2011, 03:35 PM
Also, how do you guys lose your companions in combat, aren't they all just cowering down until the fights are over?

Basically, once they're down on their knees pretty much any damage will kill them, so if they're on fire or poisoned they might die and any stray arrows, spells or area of effect attacks can finish them off. Having the top tier sneak perk and going back into sneak mode so that enemies are forced to reacquire a target (or simply running away) can also make them go back to your follower and finish them off.

Oh, and my favourite Lydia stupidity is not walking on traps or blocking doorways but how after clearing out a dungeon and coming out into the sunlight again she'll immediately say "Hey look, a cave! I wonder what's inside!" I choose to believe that she might have taken a a few blows to the head while berserking her way through the place and is suffering some short term memory loss.

Basilicus
03-12-2011, 04:28 PM
After that I started to get a bit wary of companions. They only die on you after all. But having heard so much about the lass from the pub in Whitehold, I gave her a chance to join me. We got two steps into one of the cairns and a restless draugr knocked her down, and a stray bit of frost damage one of them directed my way splashed onto her and killed her.

This is also strange to me. My companions have usually proven resilient, but then again I'm playing a sneaky, destructo-healy mage (will blacksmith for food) and sometimes like to simply stand behind Companion X using Healing Hands between cowardly swipes of my blade at whomever my companion is tanking.

I just realized: I'm playing dark elf Anders.

I prefer to rotate my companions by locality. Makes me feel like I've got my own pseudo-guild going. A Guild of Me. I think it also forces me to switch up my play-style somewhat depending on where I am (and by extension, who I'm with).

Tei
03-12-2011, 09:43 PM
I have played Skyrim as destruction mage for like 50 hours, so I have killed a lot of companions and replaced with others.

All feel different to me. Some are very boring and never talks, others are anoying, some are a great help, others are morons.

My favorite was Belrand (I think that his name) he always have something very right to say about things, and was great at combat, think a mele character that use the bow correctly, and use the magic shield and summon ghost wolfs. A great dude.

Now I have a riften mage, marconio or something like that. He is good at combat, but Is not fun to talk to him.


I think they're actually supposed to auto-level with you, but sometimes don't because they're bugged (color me surprised).

Also, how do you guys lose your companions in combat, aren't they all just cowering down until the fights are over?

Yea, are broken and don't level. Theres a console command to force then to do it, anyway. I think was disable/enable.

Nalano
03-12-2011, 09:50 PM
I got Kharjo, catman maceman.

None of them have personalities other than a couple quips - "We're going someplace warm, right?" - but if I'm going to break the world, I might as well break it proper.

I mean, everybody hates the catmen so much that they're not allowed within city limits. Unless you're a catman, in which case go right ahead. Or if the catman's with you. Then they don't say a word.

Kinda like how the Alakir, if you don't immediately complete the quest, can be found at random locations harassing Redguard women. But not you, if you're a Redguard woman.

Anthile
03-12-2011, 10:30 PM
They don't hate the catmen. It's only the caravans that are not allowed within cities because they are notorious for smuggling, especially moon sugar and skooma. They are naturally rare in Skyrim since their homeland is a desert.

Nalano
03-12-2011, 10:46 PM
They don't hate the catmen. It's only the caravans that are not allowed within cities because they are notorious for smuggling, especially moon sugar and skooma. They are naturally rare in Skyrim since their homeland is a desert.

There are 12 named Khajiit in all of Skyrim, and of them only one is in a city - J'zargo, the apprentice mage at the College of Winterhold. Every non-named Khajiit is either a bandit, a highwayman or an assassin.

I call shenanigans!

Ravelle
03-12-2011, 11:56 PM
I found out companions only get in your way, block your path etc. My Lydia thought it would be good idea to suddenly run forward and shower in my Firebreath.