A new mod for Skyrim: Special Edition draws inspiration from the Middle-earth: Shadow Of Mordor series by turning regular enemies into powerful Nemesis versions if they kill you. Rather than simply die and reload a save, you'll respawn elsewhere in the world, ready to hunt down your new named Nemesis. They might even loot your gear and use it against you.
The Shadow Of Skyrim mod launched on Nexus Mods this week. It does away with Skyrim's normal death system (sending you to reload the last save) and instead has you wake up elsewhere without your gear. You'll have a quest to retrieve your backpack, and a quest to hunt your bold new Nemesis.
Whichever baddie kills you (yes, even a mudcrab) gets powered up with a unique title, stat boosts, and a special buff. The mod's maker, Syclonix, explains, "For example, a Stormcloak Nemesis may receive the 'Bear Warden' Buff providing them with a trained bear companion since Stormcloaks are associated with bears." And there's a chance your Nemesis will have nicked your gold and taken your gear to wield themself.
(Do be warned: right now, the mod has a nasty issue where Random Encounter enemies killing you and becoming your Nemesis will vanish with your goodies if you loot your corpse. Thankfully, you can disable looting—and should, for now.)
You, on the other hand, will have a debuff related to your death. "For example," the dev says, "if you were defeated with a power attack, you may obtain the 'Off-Balance' Debuff which allows enemies to knock you down more easily (with power attacks)." So hunt your Nemesis while weaker and they might be armed with your swish gear. A grand old time. And yup, you can have multiple Nemeseses at once.
Monolith's Middle-earth stabfests are obviously a big inspiration here, but I'm glad to see it work in new ideas to massage the concept into Skyrim in an interesting form.
I'd be thrilled to see ideas of the Nemesis system in more games (Nemesystems?) but it's a difficult legal line to tread. Warner Bros patented the Nemesis system, because they're monsters. Don't worry: Syclonix says the way this mod's Nemesis system works is distinct from the patented process, not implementing many of its features, so it should be safe.
Skyrim's almost 11 years old but modders haven't lost any of their ambition. Only last month, a big new version of a mod adding cooperative multiplayer launched.