The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Restoration Guide

Restoration Spells List, Healing, Trainers and Perks

Casting a restoration spell in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

Skyrim's Restoration Magic School gives players several abilities to heal, ward, and protect against the undead. Users of this school are capable of healing themselves and others, and even all those around them with a high level in the skill. Their ward spells can block mighty dragon fire and regenerate mana for the caster. This school pairs well with most anything. A destruction mage may want to take up restoration to give himself a means of protection against magic damage. Any character can benefit from free healing while saving potions and money. Since Restoration raises incredibly slow without some knowledge, this guide to the magic school should be helpful to you.

Benefit of Training Restoration
By raising this skill, you will lower mana costs of spells and of course gain access to powerful perks. The factor of level along with the Novice, Apprentice, Adept, Expert and Master perks will enable you to cast those super powerful spells. Each of the perks cuts the cost of any spell from that rank in half, with level gradually reducing the cost of all spells each time you gain. Spell ranks can be seen when looking at the magic through Skyrim's magic menu.

Finding Restoration Spells
The single best vendor in all of Skyrim for Restoration spells is Colette at the College of Winterhold. You'll have to do a quest to get access to her and the rest of the College, but it's well worth it for later convenience. She resides on the second floor of the Hall of Countenance, where you can find her sleeping at night. I tend to catch her during the late hours because it's predictable and overall saves me time. Her Spell selection will vary based on your level. Gain ten or so levels, come back, and something new will likely be available. You can also find vendors who sell spells in other towns, however Colette is the only one who later gets access to advanced spells (Adept +) so you'd might as well familiarize yourself with her.

I used Colette for Restoration training up until 75, when she stopped giving it. I would train first, then use her as a vendor to take all her original cash and get mine back. Not exactly free, but darn helpful for raising one of the slower skills in Skyrim. That'll work on any vendor/trainer by the way.

An added benefit of visiting the 2nd floor of the Hall of Countenance are the Enchanting and Alchemy tables. Be sure to loot all the herbs in the Alchemy room, as it's not stealing!

Colette in College of Winterhold is the single best Restoration spell vendor in Skyrim

Raising the Restoration Skill - Experience
You will gain experience for healing health, with a larger base amount of experience coming from spells of a higher spell rank (novice, etc.). The more health you heal, the larger your experience gain will be - for the full amount to be given there must be no overhealing. Now, just because you have a fancy new heal that will net you more experience, doesn't mean you should use it right away for training. Out in a dungeon, your single most powerful castable heal is your go-to for getting you into the action again. When training, you want some degree of mana efficiency so wait until you've unlocked the Adept, Expert or whatever level of your new spell before you use it to train.

For example, at level 50 restoration you'll have the choice to continue to use fast healing or start using close wounds. For training, fast healing is better for 5 or so levels while the mana cost of close wounds is brought down. It also gives you time to pick up the Adept Perk. High Hrothgar + Close Wounds + Restoration Robes (Colette sells) and Blessing of the Mage for 20% experience will let you fly past the 50s and 60s if you so choose.

One of the best places to train healing in Skyrim is at High Hrothgar. Out back in the Courtyard, there is a blocked path which requires progress in the main quest to clear. Stepping into the wind gusts will deal damage to you, which you should be able to heal right through. This might not work so well really early game, but does work a little later on. If you want basic, simple training go get beat on and cast healing spells as your source of healing. Find something you can kill quickly, but that still does respectable damage. If you go the take a beating by monsters route, consider whether you want to use all of your armor or not. Armor skills will raise faster than Restoration by far.

A second after casting a ward spell, it will be ready to absorb damage. Knowing how to time the attacks of the creatures of Skyrim can save you mana!

You also gain experience for Wards blocking damage. So, if you use these during your travels you'll get a little xp here and there. Trouble is, wards are huge mana hogs and should only be up for a second or two to block an incoming attack or dragon's breath.

At later levels, when you either find Circle of Protection through exploration or at Colette's shop, you can use this to gain experience without any undead nearby. It's expensive, but you could cast it here and there to help speed things up!

Skyrim Restoration Spell List

Dual-casting a restoration spell while training the skill against a bear. Light armor got a chewing that day...

Here is a list of all the Restoration spells in Skyrim by type, from least to most difficult.

Please note Magicka cost is base. That is, what the spell would cost if you were casting it at lowest level without any perk. The base healing of a spell is also misleading as it will be amplified by +50% with the Regeneration Perk.

Skill Levels are: Novice (0-24), Apprentice (25-49), Adept (50-74), Expert (75-99) Master (100).

Healing Spells
Spell NameSkill LevelMagickaSpell Description
HealingNovice12/secHeals for 10 points per second. Everyone starts with it, and it's good enough to get you to level 25 for better, faster healing.
Fast HealingApprentice73Heals instantly for 50 health.
Healing HandsApprentice25/secHeals a nearby target for 10 life per second. You can use this to train healing on enemy creatures weaker than you.
Close WoundsAdept126Here's your big heal: heals for 100 life, 150 with Regeneration.
Heal OtherAdept80A quick 75 point heal on your target.
Grand HealingExpert254Heals everything within 15 feet of you for 200 life and stamina with the Respite perk.

If you want to play harder difficulties or use companions, Healing Hands will help you to get those NPCs back up and running. During big fights, such as those between the Stormcloak and Imperial Guard, Grand Healing can give you a lot of experience as it heals many life points. What is more, you'll probably singlehandedly guarantee your side's soldiers survive.

Ward Spells
Spell NameSkill LevelMagickaSpell Description
Lesser WardNovice34/secIncreases armor by 40 and negates 40 points off any spell damage received from direct spells like dragon breath to flame-enchanted weapons.
Steadfast WardApprentice58/secBoosted to 60 armor and 60 spell absorption
Greater WardAdept86/secBoosted to 80 armor and 80 spell absorption

Wards take a moment to come to full power. You can see this in the spell's animation, that small second before it's at full power makes all the difference in the world so you need to see the enemy attack coming. You can hold the ward while casting or wielding anything else in your other hand. It's a caster's version of a shield. If you take the Ward Absorb perk available at 60 restoration your wards will absorb magicka from any spell used against you.

Protection from Undead Spells
Spell NameSkill LevelMagickaSpell Description
Turn Lesser UndeadApprentice84Undead up to level 6 will flee from you for 30 seconds, with a slight stagger effect on impact.
Repel Lesser UndeadAdept115Affects Level 8 Undead.
Turn UndeadAdept168Affects Level 13 Undead
Repel UndeadExpert353Affects Level 16 Undead
Turn Greater UndeadExpert267Affects level 21 Undead
Circle of ProtectionExpert171This spell makes a circle on the ground for 30 seconds. Level 20 or lower Undead crossing in will flee. Call it your safe zone. You can also call it a training mechanism as this spell can be spammed for experience once the mana cost is down.
Guardian CircleMaster716Like Circle of Protection, only affecting level 35 Undead. It also heals you for 20 health per second inside. This lasts a full minute. (see notes below)
Bane of the UndeadMaster988In a massive 80' area undead take level 30 Turn Undead and are set on fire. This will also stagger them all. One of the most powerful spells in Skyrim, if very specialized. (see notes below)

All these spells affect Undead in general. Skeletons, Draugr and Vampires all fall into this category. Turn Undead effects cause a stagger, which is stronger with higher level spells. Afterward, the Undead will flee from you. That momentary stun can be helpful for firing off an extra shot or getting in a heal.

Keeping one of the Turn Undead type spells on hotkey should be helpful to raising your Restoration, but myself and others do not really use these spells. There are two really cool hidden gems here, however:

Getting Bane of the Undead and Guardian Circle
Requires: Level 90 in Restoration Magic and completion of the Mages' Guild quest Good Intentions. With these two prerequisites knocked out, Colette will give you a quest that results in the Bane of the Undead Spell as your reward, while her shop should soon start stocking Guardian Circle for sale!

Skyrim Restoration Skill Perks

Skyrim Restoration Talents

There are twelve perks here with a total of 13 points needed to master. One quick set we can get out of the way are the Novice, Apprentice, Adept, Expert, and Master Restoration perks. Each of these is required to cut the heavy magicka cost of higher rank spells in half. If you want to be effective in restoration, you do want these perks! Otherwise, if your level isn't high enough you may not even have enough mana to cast a spell you know!

Restoration Dual Casting
(level 20 Restoration Magic required)
I never need more than one healing spell active. I could skip this if there wasn't likely an achievement for getting all 13 points in this skill. Now, destruction dual casting - now you're talking. Most of the time my best heal cast once is good enough. With this, you could amp up a weaker heal to possibly outheal a stronger opponent. Recovery is a far better perk.

Recovery 1 and 2 (25% each)
(level 30/60 Restoration Magic required)
Increasing Magicka regeneration is a great thing for all casters. Some might even invest just enough into this school to pick this up. It can save your life in extreme situations, when you need just one more heal and don't have enough mana. Otherwise it lets you cast more often with confidence your juice will recover quickly - especially with a mana regeneration potion on too!

Regeneration
(level 20 Restoration Magic required)
This causes all healing spells to heal 50% more. That is, a 60 point heal would now heal for 90 points. Great! It's the best way to improve the mana efficiency and life-saving properties of your Dovahkiin's restoration spells.

Respite
(level 40 Restoration Magic required)
Makes heals restore your Stamina, which can be good for melee or bow fighters. You could use this to help you run more on foot, but you could also get a horse... Note that this doesn't increase the experience you gain when healing. The healing itself is what gives the XP. Now, this will help your followers a lot in combat as they rely on stamina as well.

Necromage
(level 70 Restoration Magic required)
This makes your spells 25% more effective against Undead. I take that to mean an undead that at level 12 would not be feared by a level 10 fear spell would with this perk. It also makes them flee longer, 50% longer. This would make Bane of the Undead incredibly powerful. If your character is a Vampire, they will be counted as Undead and any healing effects, beneficial magical effects, and even armor enchantments on them would be appropriately increased.

Ward Absorb
(level 60 Restoration Magic required)
Wards will absorb Magicka from your opponents' spells. This can help you keep barriers up when under bombardment by casters. I'm not a heavy user of wards, but if you are playing a caster and rely on them then you must have this perk.

Avoid Death
(level 90 Restoration Magic required)
Once per game day you can be brought back to life if your life falls below 10% health. Now, it won't help if you are overkilled. No time for it to kick in. You see this effect come into play with certain types of creatures, like Spriggans and some casters. If you want this ability, it's certainly worth a point to get an extra life in tough fights. I'd definitely want it on a high difficulty game





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