The 25 best Skyrim Mods

Tom Hatfield at

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(Want to know what Skyrim looks like when you install 200 mods at random? Find out in our eye-opening, eye-bleaching diary: Skyrim: Week of Madness.)

Skyrim mods are amazing. In the two months since release, thousands of mods have been released, some of them quite spectacular. It’s not like Skyrim was an ugly game to begin with, but with new high resolution textures and post processing it becomes truly stunning. Then there are the new items, expanded crafting and full UI overhauls.

With so many mods available, choosing them can be a little daunting, which is why we’ve rounded up the 25 best here for you to enjoy. Check inside for the full list.

Remember, this list will be updated as more mods are released, so if you have any particular favourites you'd like to be included, mention them in the comments and I'll test them out before the next update.

If you're the tweaking type, you'll also want to check our personalised picks of the Steam Workshop. Or maybe you'd like to create your own mod. Thanks to the Skyrim Creation Kit it's a lot easier than you think. Our Skyrim Creation Kit Video Tutorial is all you need to get started.

Oh, and don't worry if you'd rather sit back and read about someone else's Skyrim adventures. Christopher Livingston's Elder Strolls diary will see you right.

1. Sky UI

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Ask any PC gamer what Skyrim's biggest flaw is and you'll get one answer: the inventory. The default UI is inelegant, slow and features far too much scrolling. Which is why Sky UI is so essential. It doesn't merely fix the problems with Bethesda's interface, it improves it on every level. Icons are now used to easily distinguish items while using less space. Additional information, such as if an item is stolen or poisoned, is clearly displayed. The inventory can even be sorted by value and weight, while a text search lets you find the correct item in a hurry. There is simply no reason not to install Sky UI, even those few who don't mind the original interface will find their Skyrim experience improved immeasurably as a result.

2. Midas Magic

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Midas Magic was a fantastic magic overhaul mod for Oblivion, which added flashy, powerful new spells to make high level mages even better at setting people on fire with their minds. The Skyrim version is shaping up to be just as good, with spells that summon mini dragons and call down meteor strikes. It also features a brand new way to learn spells, by using 'aurum reactors' dotted around Skyrim.

3. ENBSeries

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The ENBSeries mods are famous for adding improved post processing and lighting effects to make games like GTA4 and Deus Ex: Human Revolution look amazing. Now, creator Boris Vorontsov has turned his hand to Skyrim. The result is unsual, but is nonetheless beautiful using brighter, more striking colours than previous ENB mods. Those who don't care for the style should check out the the more muted Confident ENB settings instead.

4. Skyrim HD

Skyrim HD is the start of a massive texture overhaul.

Skyrim HD is the start of a massive texture overhaul.

Like Quarl's Texture mod for Oblivion or NeilMC's for Fallout 3, Skyrim HD is an ambitious project to replace the majority of in game textures with new, high resolution versions. Clocking in at a hefty 1.29GB, this mod already contains huge amounts of textures, and is getting updated all the time. Alternatively there’s Chris’s Whiterun Texture pack, less comprehensive, but just as good.