15 Best Heavy Armor Sets in Skyrim

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Heavy armor sets all seem to be tailor-made for players who don’t mind moving a bit slower in exchange for a massive defensive bonus.

So it’s fair to say heavy armor tends to be a warrior’s best friend. Especially for anyone who prefers prefer two-handed weapons. And some sets of heavy armor can be accompanied by shields for a major boost!

Tamriel has some of the most beautiful sets of armor in the world, just as we saw in TES IV: Oblivion.

The designs in Skyrim don’t fall short and, in my opinion, are even better than the ones in TES’ previous installment.

But choosing the best heavy armor is no easy task so I’ve made this list of the best heavy armor sets in the game. Hopefully this can help you get a better idea of the stats, features, locations, and ultimately find whichever armor will suit you best.

15. Ancient Nord Armor

Ancient Nord Armor in Skyrim

Worn by Nords in ancient times, the Ancient Nord Armor is a heavy set that serves as a variant of the basic iron armor.

The helmet is quite recognizable as it seems to appear in most of Skyrim’s promotional material. However the set is rather uncommon since it cannot be crafted using any materials available in the game.

You can find it being worn by Dragon Cultists during the quest “Siege on the Dragon Cult”, but it may also be found in a few other locations.

The easiest way to get your hands on the entire set is by killing the ghost that spawns after 8:00 PM in the Kjenstag Ruins.

With a base defense of just over 60 points, this set is quite sturdy and great for the early stages of the game.

14. Steel Armor

Steel Armor heavy skyrim

Steel armor is one of the most common types of heavy sets and it works very well.

It can be found worn by most bandits and warriors and it may be seen in two forms: the first type comes with shoulder guards, and the other type doesn’t include the pads in the cuirass.

Both sets have the same defensive stats of 96 so it really comes down to what look you’re going for. But for sure this is worth chasing if you want an early protective heavy set that just works.

13. Dwarven Armor

Dwarven Armor in Skyrim

This legendary set of armor used to be worn by Dwarves, back when they weren’t extinct in Skyrim.

Nowadays the set presents a beautiful design that evokes a feeling of ancient times, as its bronze color accompanied by a mechanical-like shape makes this quite a unique sight.

It can be crafted or bought from blacksmiths as well as found in many locations during the early stages of the game. Probably more of a middle-of-the-road type of armor but still very good.

12. Falmer Hardened Armor

Falmer Hardened Armor in Skyrim

Falmer Hardened Armor is a weaker version of the Falmer Heavy Armor, but it offers a good level of protection for players who can’t afford to get the Heavy version of the set.

It’s just as effective as Dwarven armor, but it does have a much lighter weight factor.

If you want to get your hands on this set you’ll need to kill Falmer warmongers and loot their corpses to obtain all the pieces.

Higher ranked Falmer might also carry hardened armor, although they often tend to be wearing the Heavy version of the set instead.

11. Dawnguard Heavy Armor

Dawnguard Heavy Armor in Skyrim

The Dawnguard Heavy Armor set is the preferred armor of choice for Dawnguard members.

You can kill any of these warriors in order to obtain the armor for yourself. However, players who prefer to take a more peaceful approach might also purchase the armor from Gunmar.

It only weighs 78 points and offers total protection of 104, making it one of the most solid sets in the game. But again it’s definitely a heavy choice.

This armor’s design is quite simplistic yet aesthetically pleasing. It dresses up any warrior with an elegant tone and helps keep the skin protected from slashes or blunt hits from your foe’s weapons.

10. Steel Plate Armor

Steel Plate Armor in Skyrim

This Steel Plate set of armor resembles those traditional knight armor sets that you often see in Hollywood movies.

The set itself offers a solid level of protection of 87, and the whole set only weighs a total of 59 points making it one of the lightest sets of heavy armor in the game(a bit of a contradiction here, I know).

You can find and craft this set pretty early in the game, with enchanted variants of the set spawning once you reach level 19 and up.

Rigel Strong-Arm has a full set of Steel Plate Armor which may be looted from him if you visit his location in Pinewatch.

9. Blades Armor

Blades Armor Skyrim photo

The Blades: legendary dragon slayers who later become part of the Septim’s Guard.

These elegant knights dress up in an armor that resembles lighter models, but their armor offers a much larger level of protection capable of stopping even the strongest dragon flames.

With a base defense value of 114 and a weight of 87, the Blades Armor set is a very good choice for defense at almost any level. And this is an easy one to get at the Sky Haven Temple.

8. Orcish Armor

Orcish Armor demo in Skyrim

Orcish Armor offers a level of protection of 121 with a weight of just 71 for the entire set. So basically not too heavy, but definitely a great protective choice.

This set starts spawning at level 20 and you may find enchanted parts of this armor as early as level 26.

It can also be bought from various smiths or looted from the corpses of fallen enemies. But beware – if you plan to buy it, the entire set will cost a hefty sum of septims!

7. Chitin Heavy Armor

Chitin Heavy Armor Skyrim

There are two variations of Chitin Armor that were added to Skyrim with the Dragonborn DLC: a light variant which provides decent coverage from most attacks, and a heavy variant capable of stopping the mightiest of foes.

This armor can be crafted with chitin and it offers a similar level of protection as the Steel Plate Armor with even less weight than its steel counterpart.

In general this is worth looking into, but you’ll probably eventually find some armor that suits your specific needs. Chitin might be best for an all-around protective layer.

6. Ebony Armor

Ebony Armor Skyrim photo

The Ebony armor can be found enchanted starting at level 33 but its regular version can also be found on various foes once you reach level 32.

The set resembles the armor of Sauron, and offers a protection rating of 126 with a weight of just 76.

Note you can also create this armor yourself but you’ll need to reach at least level 80 Smithing first.

5. Falmer Heavy Armor

Falmer Heavy Armor Skyrim

With a base protection rating of 96, the fearsome Falmer Heavy Armor is a magnificent set that can be upgraded with Chitin too.

It was added to the game with the Dawnguard DLC alongside other types of chitin wears.

It has quite a unique design which makes it appealing to many players even though it doesn’t have the highest of defense ratings. You can also buy this pretty easily if you save up enough money. The most costly piece will be the armor itself at a total of 1,200 septims.

4. Nordic Carved Armor

Nordic Carved Armor Skyrim

Nordic Carver Armor is another very appealing set that many players have fallen in love with. It’s also an exclusive from the Dragonborn DLC.

This set includes a shield which makes it ideal for players with a one-handed playstyle.

It can be found from level 25 and up and it offers pretty much everything you’d want: boots, gauntlets, a helmet, a shield, and the armor itself.

3. Stalhrim Armor

Stalhrim Armor Skyrim

The Stalhrim armor set is only unlocked after you run the quest “A New Source of Stalhrim”, which requires the Dragonborn DLC to unlock.

The entire set is very visually appealing with horns that resemble those of the Ancient Nord Armor and a brilliantly designed cuirass.

Worth noting that the defensive rating is not too shabby either.

It offers a total protection rating of 102 with a weight of just 59 which makes this set ideal for players who want to wear a heavy set without having to compromise too much inventory space.

2. Daedric Armor

Daedric Armor Skyrim

So Daedric Armor has always been a fan favorite across The Elder Scrolls franchise, and the Skyrim series is no exception to this.

One look at the Daedric armor set and you’ll notice it has an eerie, evil look to it. It’s the kind of look that strikes fear into the hearts of your foes.

It is the strongest set of armor in base-game Skyrim and one that many players choose to wear even after installing some of the game’s DLCs.

This armor can be crafted using Daedra hearts and pieces of Ebony armor, as well as black soul gems and centurion dynamo cores.

You may also obtain pieces of this armor by slaying Dremora and looting their corpses but it’ll take a while to complete the set.

1. Dragonplate Armor

Dragonplate Armor Skyrim heavyarmor

Dragonplate armor might not be the most aesthetically pleasing set in the game, but it’s the one that offers the most protection out of the lot.

With a protection of 136 points for all pieces, Dragonplate armor can withstand attacks from pretty much anything.

It can be crafted and upgraded using dragon bones, but to do that you’ll need a level 100 smithing. So yeah it may be more worthwhile to look into loot locations if you aren’t big into making it yourself.

This set represents the hours of work spent by a Dragonborn slaying beasts all across Skyrim. Wearing this is definitely a sign of prestige amongst the common folk.

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