In our most recent Skyrim Fansite poll, readers were asked to pick the creepiest enemy in Skyrim. Not surprisingly, the Falmer came out on top with 34% of the vote, beating out the likes of Hagravens, Draugr, Frostbite Spiders, Spriggans, and Vampires. As you can see, the Falmer definitely had some creepy competition in this poll (just thinking about undead Nords and giant spiders gives me the chills) but what is it about the Falmer in particular that made these creatures the creepiest of them all?
The Falmer are bent, goblin-like creatures that live deep underground in Skyrim, often times skulking in Dwemer ruins. Living in continual darkness has rendered the creatures blind, and they rely upon their exceptional hearing to stalk and hunt prey. Falmer ears are long and pointed and are a prized Alchemist ingredient (Falmer ears can be harvested from their corpses — if a player survives an encounter with these denizens of the deep). Falmer eyes are dead and lifeless — their flesh a pallid grey. Instead of noses they have two long slits on their misshapen faces that complete the Falmer’s gruesome look.
The Falmer are not mindless creatures that haunt the deeps of Skyrim. Rather they possess a high degree of intelligence, keeping Chaurus as livestock and fashioning unique heavy armor and weapons from Chaurus chitin (Falmer armor and weapons can be used by player characters — though crude in design, Falmer armor offers exceptional protection from damage). The Falmer lack cultural sophistication, but they are communal creatures, building primitive housing and traps, and working together in groups when hunting and fighting. Certain members of Falmer society possess magic abilities and can cast Frost and Shock spells. These Falmer Shaman also possess the ability to cast Fast Healing, making them an especially challenging foe to battle.
As evil and hostile as the Falmer are towards intruders and surface-dwellers, the creatures surprisingly have a sad history. Back before the Nords settled the province of Skyrim, the area was inhabited by the Snow Elves. As the Nords spread across Skyrim, fighting between the two races broke out. For centuries the fighting raged, but slowly and surely the Snow Elves lost ground and faced extinction.
In desperation the Snow Elves turned to the Dwemer for aid. The Dwemer allowed the Snow Elves safe haven in their underground cities in exchange for their servitude. Regrettably, the Snow Elves were mistreated and enslaved by the Dwemer, forced to live on a diet of toxic fungus. As the centuries passed, the fungus mutated the Snow Elves’ minds and bodies until they eventually degenerated into the twisted Falmer, evil and vicious.
With the release of the Skyrim Dawnguard addon, it’s revealed that at least two Snow Elves survived both the Nord purge and Dwemer enslavement.
There are eight types of Falmer in Skyrim (including three Falmer from the Dawnguard addon — Feral, Warmonger, and Frozen Falmer). Stats for each are provided in the following table:
A fight with the Falmer shouldn’t be taken lightly. No matter what level your player character is, these creatures are vicious fighters and possess a lot of Health. In addition, the Falmer are notorious for poisoning their weapons and you’re almost certain to take Poison damage. At early levels, they can prove very difficult (if not impossible) to kill. The following are some helpful tips when dealing with Falmer:
- Falmer are blind, so use their blindness to your advantage. Use your Sneak ability to creep up on an unsuspecting Falmer in order to land the first blow. Remember — Falmer use their hearing to “see.” Cast a Muffle spell to quiet your movements or confuse them by shooting arrows against far objects in the room.
- Avoid exploring Dwemer ruins until your character has leveled up a bit. When investigating likely Falmer lairs, make sure you’re loaded with Healing potions and Food. Falmer battles are tough, and you’re going to need your strength.
- A best offense is a good defense. Consider foregoing a two-fisted attack with weapons or spells and get a good shield. The shield will help Block damage, and can be used to stagger a Falmer momentarily — making the creature vulnerable to attack.
- Summon creatures with Conjuration spells to help you in battle, or fight Falmer side-by-side with a Follower or Hireling.
- All types of Destruction magic work equally well against the Falmer, though there is some thought among players that Fire spells are more effective due to the Falmer’s Snow Elf background.
Typical Falmer loot includes Falmer Ears, Poisons, and Gold. There’s a possibility of finding the following when searching corpses:
- Bone Meal
- Glow Dust
- Hanging Moss
- Falmer Arrow
- Falmer Bow
- Falmer Ear
- Falmer Helmet
- Falmer Shield
- Falmer Sword
- Falmer War Axe
- Flawless Garnet
- Malachite Ore
- Weak Lingering Poison
- Weak Poison
So what do you think? Do the Falmer deserve to be the crowned the most creepy enemy in Skyrim? Give us your thoughts!
Also, don’t forget to participate in our latest poll (found on the sidebar of this article) and be sure to join the Skyrim Fansite on Facebook. Until next time!