Some of the quests in Skyrim are a lot harder than others.
So you should know which is which to make sure you can do the job.
I’ve made a list of the 18 hardest quests in Skyrim to give you an idea of when the game gets hard and to get your mind ready for the challenge!
- 18. Paarthurnax
- 17. The Way Of The Voice
- 16. The Cure For Madness
- 15. Elder Knowledge
- 14. The Lost Expedition
- 13. Blood on the Ice
- 12. Bleak Falls Barrow
- 11. The Thieves Guild Radiant Quests
- 10. The Black Star
- 9. The Break of Dawn
- 8. The Wolf Queen Awakened
- 7. Summoning Karstaag
- 6. A Return to Your Roots
- 5. No Stone Unturned
- 4. The Ebony Warrior
- 3. Unearthed
- 2. At the Summit of Apocrypha
- 1. Lost to the Ages
One of the most interesting people in Skyrim is Paarthurnax. He has an interesting past and is very kind to the Dragonborn. He put his past behind him to help save the world from Alduin.
But eventually, Delphine and The Blades will ask the Dragonborn to kill Paarthurnax, which is optional.
Paarthurnax is a powerful dragon, so it’s hard to kill him. He’s also changed a lot, and the Blades may be wrong to judge him harshly after he helped the Dragonborn and their allies.
Overall, it’s up to you to decide, but both the choice and the possible fight are very hard.
17. The Way Of The Voice
“The Way of the Voice” is one of Skyrim’s most famous quests. It’s a main quest, and it requires you to climb a dangerous path full of dangers, like dangerous animals that are hard to kill when you’re low level.
Since it’s one of the first main quests in Skyrim, you’ll usually start this quest at a lower level, so it’s quite hard at first.
You’ll also have to climb hundreds of steps to reach the top and meet the Greybeards, which makes the quest not only hard but also long.
On top of that, this path goes up, but it starts in Ivarstead, which you can’t get to with a normal carriage. You’ll have to walk there.
Overall, this quest is hard because you have to walk a long way and fight strong enemies along the way.
16. The Cure For Madness
In the Dark Brotherhood questline, Cicero is an important character. Even though he betrays the guild at the start of this mission, he is still a popular character in The Elder Scrolls, which makes it hard to decide if you should help him or fight against him.
At the end of the quest, you’ll have the chance to kill Cicero, but you can also set him free. If you do, he’ll join your group after you finish the Dark Brotherhood questline.
“The Cure for Madness” is hard because you have to make this hard choice and also because you have to explore an old Dark Brotherhood sanctuary and fight many ghostly enemies to find Cicero. Overall, this is one of the toughest Dark Brotherhood quests in Skyrim.
15. Elder Knowledge
This is the only quest on this list that is part of the main story of the game.
There’s a good reason for this: the quest is very long and takes you through two different Dwemer ruins, where you’ll have to fight many enemies to get to Alftand and find the Elder Scroll.
14. The Lost Expedition
The Lost Expedition happens in some old Dwemer ruins.
You know what that means: you will have to deal with old machines whose main goal is to kill you.
You have to find the notes of the researchers you were sent to find, but when you get there, they are already dead.
13. Blood on the Ice
The goal of Blood on the Ice is to find the serial killer who has been killing people all over the city of Windhelm.
You can use the quest to find the killer on your own, though it can be hard to find some clues and the quest itself feels a bit long.
12. Bleak Falls Barrow
This quest is part of the main storyline of Skyrim’s base game, and the Jarl of Whiterun gives it to you at the start of the story.
Since the Dragonborn has no levels, the dungeon you have to get through is very hard. There, on your way to the end, you’ll face a lot of undead, Draugr, and even bandits.
After you finish the dungeon, the Unrelenting Force shout will give you the word “Fus,” which is a great reward for all the trouble you’ve been through so far.
11. The Thieves Guild Radiant Quests
The Thieves Guild’s little quests can be a pain.
The Radiant missions aren’t too hard, but you have to do a lot of annoying quests to finish them.
10. The Black Star
In this quest, you’ll go on a mission to fix the damage that Necromancers have done to the ancient power of the Star of Azura.
This means that the star is full of corruption and that it is hard to get rid of. In fact, you’ll need to ask Azura to take you to the centre of the star in order to get inside it.
There, you’ll have to beat different enemies to get rid of all the bad things on the star.
The quest’s rewards aren’t as good as you think they are, but the trouble you have to go through to complete it would make you think otherwise!
9. The Break of Dawn
Meridia gives you the Break of Dawn quest when you go to her beacon.
At the end of the dungeon, there is a Necromancer named Melkoran who is holding the Dawnbreaker.
To free it, you’ll need to use the mirrors and reflective items that are all over the dungeon to guide Meridia’s light to the Dawnbreaker.
8. The Wolf Queen Awakened
Even though The Wolf Queen Awakened isn’t a high-level quest, it’s hard to do at lower levels.
To get it, you only need to be Level 10, and you have to finish the “Man Who Cried Wolf” quest first.
You will have to go through Potema’s Catacombs for this quest. Usually, to finish, you’ll have to fight a lot of Draugrs, which can be hard at low levels.
What’s the best thing to do? Before you start this mission, you should level up to level 20.
7. Summoning Karstaag
Karstaag makes his triumphant return. But since Karstaag is dead this time, you’ll have to call him from another world to help you fight.
The only problem is that he’s hard to beat and is thought to be one of the hardest enemies in the game, even if you’re playing on the easier settings.
If you manage to kill the spirit of the powerful Karstaag, you’ll be able to call him whenever you need him in battle, which is a good thing.
But it takes a while to kill him, so save your game before you try.
6. A Return to Your Roots
When you find out how annoying this quest is to do, you’ll probably stop being interested in herbalism.
It’s a follow-up to “Seeking Your Roots” from Oblivion, and you have to find 30 Crimson Nirnroots and bring them to Avrusa Sarethi.
Crimson Nirnroots are, as you might expect, very hard to find, and you’ll have to go deep into Skyrim to find them all.
5. No Stone Unturned
No Stone Unturned is a mission where you have to collect 24 different stones. It is one of the most frustrating quests in Skyrim.
The problem is that none of these stones show up on the map, so you’ll have to look for them by hand. If you don’t use an online guide, this can take a long time.
Try to remember where you found the stones so you don’t have to go back to the same places twice.
4. The Ebony Warrior
You can’t get the Ebony Warrior quest by yourself.
Once you reach level 80, a man in full enchanted ebony armour will come up to you. At this point, you can choose to fight him one-on-one at his camp.
The Ebony Warrior is a hard mission, but it can be finished with a good old Fus-Ro-Dah near the edge of the cliff where the fight takes place.
In the Unearthed quest, you’ll face Ahzidal, a Dragon Priest who is said to be the first person in history to master the arcane arts of destruction.
He has legendary strength, and if you don’t have any magicka-resistant gear on, he will be scarier than any other NPC in the game.
Don’t worry, players with high levels should be fine on this quest.
But don’t try to do this mission unless you’re at least level 40. It’s not easy.
2. At the Summit of Apocrypha
Here we are. The last quest in the Dragonborn DLC, where you face Miraak, the first Dragonborn.
Many people think that this quest is the real, last fight (and one of the most difficult). Miraak is a very difficult opponent who will do anything to beat you.
Miraak can heal himself over and over again, so you’ll have to bring him close to death at least three times before you can finally kill him.
This is the last quest in the Dragonborn DLC questline, and it is much harder than the fight with Alduin.
1. Lost to the Ages
Lost to the Ages is a multi-part quest that you can’t start until you know more about the Aetherium.
You’ll have to find the four pieces of solid Aetherium and defeat a lot of Dwemer creations on the way. You’ll also run into the mighty Forgemaster, one of the strongest enemies in the game, during this time.
As you look for the missing pieces of Aetherium, the quest is long and hard.
But if you finish it, you can use the Aetherium Forge, which is a great reward for this hard mission.