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You could have a stronger mage playing an Altmer, but they have no resistance whatsoever. Not to mention using mage robes means you're missing out on armour bonuses given by melee or thief, so you can die easily.
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While a High Elf mage in Skyrim would have a higher Magicka bonus and their incredibly useful Highborn racial power at their disposal, they do not have any defensive resistances of any kind without the use of mods, making the High Elf very fragile in comparison to the Breton race.
   
I reccommend a Breton instead. It may be harder using a mage with that race, but it's better than dying, especially against other mages and dragons on higher difficulties.
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Contrary to the High Elf, the Breton may not be as powerful in terms of their Mage skill set or Magicka reserves, but their defensive capabilities shine through, particularly later in the game and at higher difficulties when you begin to encounter powerful Magic users or Dragons. Their 25% resistance to Fire, Frost, Shock, and even Dragon Shouts is nothing short of spectacular.
   
Trust me. I know. I played an Altmer. I play Breton now.
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While they do not posess the +50 Magicka bonus or the ability to almost instantly regenerate their Magicka via a High Elf's Highborn power, their own racial power, Dragonskin, is arguably even more helpful. The ability to absorb 50% of all incoming spells and the Magicka from those spells for 60 seconds, only to use that regenerated Magicka to fire a spell back at your enemy is uniquely helpful, particularly against a Dragon.
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In all fairness, the +50 Magicka bonus won't mean much once your Breton obtains a few levels and puts them into Magicka, and their defensive advantages really give them an edge over the High Elf, especially if you're playing on Master or Legendary difficulty where a Dragon, Vampire, or other Magic users can really bring you down to your knees unless you have a way of resisting their spells. I reccommend a Breton for long-term gameplay as a Battlemage or Spellsword type of character.
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Fun fact #1: The Breton's resistance to Magic was originally intended to be 50%. A remnant of this can still be found in the loading screens, where it occasionally says that Bretons have a 50% resistance to Magic, but it is instead 25%.
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Fun fact #2: The Breton is the only race that can acheive the maximum resistance to Magic of 85% without any armour or potions. They can also acheive both an 80% Magic Absorbption and 70% Magic Resistance chance, making them virtually immune to all forms of Magical damage, including Dragons.
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Fun Fact #3: If you combined their defensive advantages with a tempered set of Enchanted armour, it makes the Breton practically immune to all forms of damage, something that the other races simply cannot acheive due to their lack of such a resistance to Magic, and Shock damage uniquely, that of which no other race and very few NPC's actually have.

Latest revision as of 19:27, November 26, 2016

While a High Elf mage in Skyrim would have a higher Magicka bonus and their incredibly useful Highborn racial power at their disposal, they do not have any defensive resistances of any kind without the use of mods, making the High Elf very fragile in comparison to the Breton race.

Contrary to the High Elf, the Breton may not be as powerful in terms of their Mage skill set or Magicka reserves, but their defensive capabilities shine through, particularly later in the game and at higher difficulties when you begin to encounter powerful Magic users or Dragons. Their 25% resistance to Fire, Frost, Shock, and even Dragon Shouts is nothing short of spectacular.

While they do not posess the +50 Magicka bonus or the ability to almost instantly regenerate their Magicka via a High Elf's Highborn power, their own racial power, Dragonskin, is arguably even more helpful. The ability to absorb 50% of all incoming spells and the Magicka from those spells for 60 seconds, only to use that regenerated Magicka to fire a spell back at your enemy is uniquely helpful, particularly against a Dragon.

In all fairness, the +50 Magicka bonus won't mean much once your Breton obtains a few levels and puts them into Magicka, and their defensive advantages really give them an edge over the High Elf, especially if you're playing on Master or Legendary difficulty where a Dragon, Vampire, or other Magic users can really bring you down to your knees unless you have a way of resisting their spells. I reccommend a Breton for long-term gameplay as a Battlemage or Spellsword type of character.

Fun fact #1: The Breton's resistance to Magic was originally intended to be 50%. A remnant of this can still be found in the loading screens, where it occasionally says that Bretons have a 50% resistance to Magic, but it is instead 25%.

Fun fact #2: The Breton is the only race that can acheive the maximum resistance to Magic of 85% without any armour or potions. They can also acheive both an 80% Magic Absorbption and 70% Magic Resistance chance, making them virtually immune to all forms of Magical damage, including Dragons.

Fun Fact #3: If you combined their defensive advantages with a tempered set of Enchanted armour, it makes the Breton practically immune to all forms of damage, something that the other races simply cannot acheive due to their lack of such a resistance to Magic, and Shock damage uniquely, that of which no other race and very few NPC's actually have.

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