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Skyrim Shout Tier List – TheFantasyTimes

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By Nikita Gambhir

Skyrim Shout Tier List



Shouts are an exciting addition to the lore of The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim, and as the Dragonborn, players have the ability to learn Shouts intuitively, making them feel powerful and important. According to Nordic history, Kyne, the Nordic version of Kynareth, granted mortals the ability to use the Thu’um, and the dragon Paarthurnax was the first to teach them how to use it. While it typically takes years to master a single Shout, the Dragonborn can learn them quickly by absorbing the souls and knowledge of dragons.

Skyrim offers 27 Shouts for the Dragonborn to learn, with most being offensive, but some having more subtle effects. Certain Shouts are more useful than others, and some are essential to learn, making it difficult for players to decide which ones to prioritize unlocking. Dragon souls can be scarce, so players must consider the value of each Shout to gameplay and storytelling.

The most iconic Shout is Unrelenting Force, which lives up to its name as a powerhouse, causing enemies to be staggered and turned into ragdolls. Become Ethereal allows players to become a specter that cannot be harmed and is useful for jumping off mountains without taking fall damage. Marked for Death is a top-tier Shout because its armor penalty is permanent, making enemies incredibly vulnerable to physical damage. Dragon Aspect transforms the Dragonborn into a dragon, providing bonuses to power attacks, armor rating, fire and frost resistance, more powerful Shouts, and a decrease in recharge time. Soul Tear rips the soul out of an enemy and fills a soul gem while raising the enemy as an undead fighter. Dragonrend forces a dragon to comprehend mortality, making it easier to kill. Summon Durnehviir summons a dragon necromancer to assist the Dragonborn in battle.

Slow Time is a lifesaver in combat situations, and Whirlwind Sprint helps players reposition or escape quickly. Cyclone sends targets up in the air and deals fall damage. Call Dragon summons the dragon Odahviing to aid the Dragonborn in battle. Elemental Fury increases the speed of melee attacks, while Bend Will allows players to bend the will of dragons and enemies. Aura Whisper is essential for sneaky Dragonborns, as it picks up even undead and automatons. Fire Breath and Frost Breath allow players to breathe fire or frost, respectively. Disarm removes enemies’ equipped weapons, and Ice Form freezes enemies into blocks of ice. Storm Call and Drain Vitality have situational uses.

Overall, Skyrim offers a variety of Shouts for players to learn, each with unique effects and uses. The Dragonborn’s ability to learn Shouts quickly adds to the game’s lore and makes players feel powerful.

Shouts are one of the best new parts of lore added to The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrimand being the Dragonborn with the ability to learn Shouts intuitively is a neat mechanic mixed in with lore that makes any player feel powerful and important. Nordic history says that Kyne, the Nordic version of Kynareth, granted the ability to use the Thu’um to mortals, while the dragon Paarthurnax was the first to teach mortals to use it. It normally takes years to master just one Shout, but the Dragonborn is able to learn Shouts instinctively and with little time at all by absorbing the souls and knowledge of dragons.


Skyrim has 27 Shouts on offer for the Dragonborn to learn across the Skyrim base game, Dawnguardand Dragonborn expansions; most of them are offensive, but some make their effects known in more subtle ways. Some Shouts are still more useful than others no matter the situation, and many of them are essential to learn. Because dragon souls can become a bit of a commodity, it can be hard to figure out which Shouts players should prioritize unlocking because of their value to gameplay or even lore and storytelling.

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S Tier

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Unrelenting Force – The most iconic of all the Shouts, Unrelenting Force more than lives up to its name as a powerhouse. The first two words cause enemies caught in this Shout to be staggered, while the third word turns them into ragdolls. If they fall from heights, they also take fall damage.

Become Ethereal – While becoming a specter that cannot harm or be harmed doesn’t sound great on the surface, players have long documented the advantages of this Shout, including jumping off mountains and taking no fall damage as convenient shortcuts, sprinting forever as stamina isn’t depleted while ethereal, and traversing dangerous places like Apocrypha.

Marked for Death – This Shout is S tier because its armor penalty is permanent, with -4500 armor after 60 seconds with three words, making enemies incredibly vulnerable to physical damage.

Dragon Aspect – This Shout came with Dragonborn and transforms them: it envelops the Dragonborn in ethereal dragon armor, gives massive bonuses to power attacks, an armor rating increase, increased fire and frost resistance, more powerful Shouts, and a decrease in recharge time between Shouts. It also summons an Ancient Dragonborn as an ally if the Dragonborn’s health falls below 50 percent.

Soul Tear – This comes with Dawnguard and rips the soul out of the enemy. It causes massive damage, and if the enemy dies from the Shout it fills a soul gem. The enemy is also raised as the undead to fight for the Dragonborn. It’s great as a finisher for stronger enemies and to use as a one-hitter on weaker enemies, especially to gain an extra ally fighter on the field.

Dragonrend – This is learned in the main questline of Skyrim and forces a dragon to comprehend mortality, something normally beyond its reach. In practical terms, it forces the dragon to land, making it far easier to kill instead of trying to shoot it out of the sky.

Summon Durnehviir – Durnehviir is a dragon necromancer who is trapped in the Soul Cairn. This Shout summons him to Tamriel for a short time to assist the Dragonborn in battle and is ranked higher than Call Dragon because of the speed he appears to assist, and he can be summoned underground if there’s enough space.

A Tier

Screenshot from Skyrim showing the player unleashing a powerful Shout.

Slow Time – This is a lifesaver for dicey combat situations, but it also slows potion timers for things like Fortify Smithing, making it a great Shout to combine with potions on a timer when leveling up.

Whirlwind Sprint – Another iconic Shout encountered early, Whirlwind Sprint makes traveling long distances a breeze (or far more bearable) and is really helpful in battle to reposition or escape powerful enemies quickly.

Cyclone – Similar to Unrelenting Force, but sends targets up in the air and deals fall damage.

Call Dragon – Summons the dragon Odahviing to aid the Dragonborn in battle. Odahviing is invincible and is great at taking out massive groups of enemies.

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B Tier

Skyrim Dragon at Ancient's Ascent, on a word wall

Elemental Fury – Increases the speed of melee attacks; this Shout doesn’t work on enchanted weapons but if dual-wielding the weapon in the right hand can be enchanted as this Shout only takes into account the weapon equipped in the left hand.

Bend Will – This Shout allows you to bend the will of dragons, and they will even allow the Dragonborn to fly them. It also works on animals and enemies, forcing them to fight for the Dragonborn.

Aura Whisper – An essential shout for any sneaky Dragonborn, Aura Whisper picks up even undead and automatons, and is especially helpful in Falmer caves and dark dungeons, making the Dragonborn essentially immune to nasty surprises and ambushes in any dungeon.

Fire Breath – This Shout lets the Dragonborn breathe fire like a dragon. Fun for role-playing and great for lower levels, but the damage output sadly doesn’t level with the player and becomes functionally useless at higher levels.

Frost Breath – The same as Fire Breath, but with frost instead of fire. Also has the same drawbacks.

Disarm – Removes enemies’ equipped weapons and is especially helpful if they don’t have another in their inventory. This Shout works on Draugr Death Overlords and lower and can make these fights very easy as they scramble for their lost weapon.

C Tier

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Ice Form – Freezing an enemy into a block of ice can save any Dragonborn some time to think of their next steps, give them time to run away, or just create a new opening of attack.

Storm Call – Under the right conditions, Storm Call can be very helpful for crowd control, especially when dealing with a bandit fortress in the middle of nowhere where the chance of friendly fire is close to zero.

Drain Vitality – This Shout is used by several dragons across Skyrim, and at full strength does 5 points of damage to magicka, health, and stamina for 30 seconds, with stagger.

The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim is available on PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S.

MORE: Skyrim Spell Tier List

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