The Long Bow is the lowest tier bow available. It is quite basic in appearance and follows a straight bow design. It is the lightest bow available, thus its draw speed is the fastest, though this is offset by its low damage. It is the only type of bow in the game that does not vibrate in the Dragonborn's hand when shot.
If a Long Bow is improved to a greater quality with a high Smithing skill and wielded with a high Archery skill with good arrows, its damage output per second becomes greater than most other bows due to its fast draw speed. However, its damage rate remains behind the other three bows which share its draw speed but possess a greater base damage, Froki's Bow, Zephyr, and Auriel's Bow. Bows with a quick draw speed provide better value from the perks that increase damage as a percentage, such as 'Power Shot' and 'Bullseye,' compared to bows that are slower to draw. These bows, however, provide less value from damage-per-shot based sneak attack bonuses and the sneak skill 'Deadly Aim.'
- Can be found in bandit camps, even at higher levels.
- Commonly sold by general goods merchants and blacksmiths.
- One is given to the Dragonborn, along with iron arrows, near the end of their escape from Helgen.
- Sometimes found in chests.
The Long Bow can be upgraded with a piece of firewood at a grindstone, however, it does not benefit from any Smithing perks. This means that the weapon cannot be improved past flawless quality without boosting the Smithing skill over 100. This can be achieved by using enchanted items and/or blacksmithing potions to fortify Smithing.