Skyrim standing stones

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Skyrim: Every Standing Stone (And Where To Find Them)

Strange monoliths can be found throughout Skyrim’s landscape that grants you powers or boosts your abilities. They are called the Standing Stones and they act in the same fashion as Oblivion’s birth signs, but with a few crucial differences.

Related: Skyrim: The Best Alchemy Perks, Ranked

There are a total of thirteen Standing Stones spread out across the province, each one granting you a different blessing. Unlike the fixed nature of birth signs, you can change your Standing Stone blessing as much as you want. These stones are designed to help you in various ways and can help strengthen your play type, but you must choose carefully since you can only have one stone’s blessing at a time.

11 The Guardian Stones

Huddled together alongside the road to Riverwood, the Guardian Stones consist of three different stones which grant a boost in increasing skills. Each stone grants you a 20 percent faster skills increase. The boosted skills are determined by which stone you choose.

The Mage Stone gives you a faster boost in magic skills, the Thief Stone lets you learn stealth skills faster. And the Warrior Stone lets you learn all combat skills a little bit faster.

  • These stones are relatively easy to find since you pass them after escaping from Helgen. You can follow either Ralof or Hadvar down the road to Riverwood and they will lead you to the stones.

10 The Ritual Stone

Necromancers of all stripes want to receive the blessing of the Ritual Stone. With this stone’s blessing, you can reanimate all corpses within a large radius of where you are standing. The corpses will fight with you for 200 seconds.

You can only use this ability once a day and only corpses under level 75 will be reanimated. The Ritual Stone is located near Whiterun in the East.

  • It can be found east of Whiterun beside the road to Windhelm before you reach Valtheim Towers. A necromancer and two skeletons guard the stone.

9 The Shadow Stone

With the Shadow Stone, you can become invisible without having to have a potion. The stone gives you the power to become invisible for 60 seconds at a time. You can only use this ability once a day.

Related: Skyrim: The Best Bows, Ranked

However, keep in mind that whenever you interact with an object, like a chest or a lock you will immediately become visible and your ability will be spent.

  • The Shadow Stone can be found in the hills south of Riften. The stone sits atop a hill near Snow-Shod Farms and Nightingale Hall.

8 The Lover Stone

Leveling in Skyrim is based on the increase of skills. The Lover Stone allows you to increase all skills 15 % faster. This includes all skills and does not limit you like the Guardian Stones.

This stone makes playing a hybrid character even easier since all skills are affected by the bonus. However, the blessing cannot be stacked with other skill increases like Lover’s Comfort or the Well Rested bonus.

  • Travel to Kolskeggr Mine in the Reach and the Lover Stone will be up a mountain which is directly east of Markarth.

7 The Atronach Stone

Designed for you to have magic as your primary weapon, this stone not only fortifies your Magika by 50 points, but also gives you 50 percent spell absorption. These benefits come at a cost because while this blessing is active your Magicka regeneration will be decreased by 50 percent.

Balancing magic use with the slowed regeneration rate is crucial when using the Atronach Stone.

  • You can find the stone a short distance east of Darkwater crossing in Eastmarch. It is located in the volcanic tundra between Windhelm and Riften.

6 The Lady Stone

If you need a boost to your health and stamina regeneration, the Lady Stone has what you are looking for. Once you have accepted the blessing, your health and stamina regeneration is increased by 25 % for the duration you have this blessing active.

Related: Awesome Areas In Skyrim You Had No Idea About

The Lady Stone makes fighting harder enemies less challenging since you won’t have to keep as close of an eye on your bars.

  • The Lady Stone sits on a small island surrounded by the west shore of Lake Illinata. Lake Illinata can be found west of Riverwood inside the hold of Falkreath.

5 The Lord Stone

You can boost your armor and your resistance to magic by accepting the blessing of The Lord Stone. When active, your armor rating is increased by 50 points and your resistance to magic is increased by 25 %.

The blessing can be stacked with other abilities or bonuses, like the Breton’s natural resistance to magic. However, this will be capped once you are 85 percent resistant to magic.

  • You will find the Lord Sign in the hold of Hjaalmarch east of Morthal. It is on top of a mountain northeast of the shrine of Mehrunes Dagon.

4 The Apprentice Stone

Magicka regeneration rates can slow you down and make spell casting hard. But, with the Apprentice Stone, you can increase your Magicka regeneration by 100 percent making it possible to cast spell after spell.

However, while the Apprentice Stone is active you will take twice as much magic damage in every fight. Ward spells and enchanted items can help temporarily offset the effects.

  • This stone makes its home in the hold of Hjaalmarch north of Fort Snowhawk. The stone lies in the southwestern part of the marshes.

3 The Serpent Stone

Paralyzing your opponent makes them easier to deal with and can help you out when a fight catches you off guard. The blessing of the Serpent Stone allows you to use a paralysis poison that will paralyze your foe for five seconds and deals 25 points of health damage.

Related: Skyrim: The Best And Worst Armor Sets

This ability is only available once a day and has to be applied to weapons to be used.

  • Finding the Serpent Stone requires you to travel east of the College of Winterhold. The stone lies on a floating iceberg northeast of the Wreck of the Pride of Tel Vos.

2 The Tower Stone

Lockpicking can be hard, especially if you haven’t spent much time practicing the skill or investing in perks. But, the Tower Stone makes lockpicking a little easier.

Once a day, you can summon the power of the Tower stone to open a lock that is expert level or lower. This ability is useful if you find yourself thrown in jail a lot.

  • The stone can be seen from the entrance of Hob's Fall Cave to the northwest on a cliff. It lies directly west of the College of Winterhold.

1 The Steed Stone

In Skyrim, there is a lot of good loot ripe for the taking. It can make you extremely wealthy, but it also makes it easy to surpass your carrying capacity. The Steed Stone is designed to let you carry even more loot around.

With this blessing, your carrying capacity is increased by 100 and your equipped armor automatically becomes weightless. This helps when you find yourself exploring Skyrim.

  • If you have discovered the statue of Meridia in the province of Haafingar, the Steed Stone can be found directly north near Ironback Hideout.

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About The Author
Jamie Pellikaan (21 Articles Published)

Jamie Pellikaan is a list writer based in Florida. She loves to play games in all genres, but particularly prefers RPGs. Her favorite games include Dragon Age, The Elder Scrolls, and Kingdoms of Amalur. She recently graduated from Baker University and is playing on attending grad school in the spring.

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The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Wiki Guide

Standing stones are the Skyrim equivalent to Morrowind and Oblivion's "Birthsign" specialization. However, unlike the Birthsigns, you can swap out your standing stone bonus at any point, just find another standing stone and activate it. Like the birthsigns, the standing stone can do things as simple as giving you a new spell to cast daily (e.g. The Serpent Stone) to making a major change on how your character plays (e.g. The Atronach Stone).

The first stones you find will probably be the warrior/mage/thief stones as they are just a quick jog out of Helgen. These give a 20% bonus to how quickly you level up skills in one of the 3 archetypes, so make sure to drop by and choose one to start leveling. Once you feel sufficient in your archetype, feel free to hunt down the rest of the stones.

List of Standing Stones

Click on the stone name for further information.

  • Glitch: The achievement for finding all 13 standings stones can be achieved without finding every stone. Simply fast travel to a stone you've discovered and your stats in the start menu will read that you've found other Standing Stone. I have supposedly found 17 Standing Stone.

In This Wiki Guide

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

Bethesda Game Studios' blockbuster open-world RPG puts players on the precipice of determining the future of Skyrim as the Empire waits for the prophesized Dragonborn to come; a hero born with the power of The Voice, and the only one who can stand amongst the dragons.
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The Standing Stones are magical stones that can be found throughout the world of Skyrim. There are 13 standing stones in total. Activating a stone will give perks and benefits that will aid in your quests and growth. Usually only one standing stone can be activated at a time and to switch to another Standing Stone you can just activate it when you find it.

Quick Links

Standing Stones Explained

Standing stones will provide bonuses such as:

  • Increase the speed in which you improve skills.
  • Grant an ability that lasts for one in-game day.
  • Increase the regeneration rates of health, stamina, or magicka.
  • Improve stats such as carry weight or armor.

If you have the Dawnguard add-on you can obtain the Aetherial Crown which allows you to have two Standing Stones active at a time. More on that later.

The Standing Stones in Skyrim

The first three stones you’ll come across right at the start of the game on the way to Riverwood are the Guardian Stones. These are the only three Standing Stones you will find together.

The Warrior Stone, The Thief Stone, and The Mage Stone all make great stones for power-leveling certain skills and are some of the best Standing Stones in the game.

The Warrior Stone

Those under the sign of the Warrior will learn all combat skills 20% faster.

Effect: Combat skills increase 20% faster with the exclusion of Archery that falls under stealth.

Location: This is one of the guardian stones and is southwest of Riverwood right at the start of the game. (Map)

The Thief Stone

Those under the sign of the Thief will learn all stealth skills 20% faster.

Effect: Your stealth skills, including Archery, will improve 20% faster.

Location: This is one of the guardian stones and is southwest of Riverwood right at the start of the game. (Map)

The Mage Stone

Those under the sign of the Mage will learn all magic skills 20% faster.

Effect: Magic skills will increase 20% faster.

Location: This is one of the guardian stones and is southwest of Riverwood right at the start of the game. (Map)

The Apprentice Stone

Those under the sign of The Apprentice recover Magicka faster, but are more susceptible to Magicka damage.

Effect: You will recover Magicka 100% faster but will also reduce your weakness to magic by 100%.

Location: Northwest of Morthal and north of Fort Snowhawk on an island in the marshes. (Map)

A good stone if you rely heavily on magic and have a mage build but not great if you’re going up against other magic enemies given the increased weakness to magic.

The Atronach Stone

Those under the sign of The Atronach absorb a portion of incoming spell damage and have a larger pool of Magicka, but recover it more slowly.

Effect: You will absorb 50% of spell damage and fortify Magicka by 50 points. Your Magicka regeneration will be 50% slower.

Location: Northwest corner of the map, south of Windhelm. Closest to Mistwatch which is southeast of the stone. (Map)

Another stone for mage builds is The Atronach Stone and while absorbing spell damage is great, this stone does have its downside. This might be best used for a character that uses a mixture of magic and physical attacks given that Magicka regeneration is reduced.

The Lady Stone

Those under the sign of The Lady regenerate Health and Stamina more quickly.

Effect: Health and Stamina regenerate 25% faster.

Location: Directly north of Falkreath on an island in the middle of a lake. Half-Moon Mill is on the edge of the same lake. (Map)

A good contended for the best standing stone given that health and stamina regenerate 25% faster. This is ideal for a character that uses physical attacks and likes to get stuck in and roll with the punches.

The Lord Stone

Those under the sign of The Lord are more resistant to both Magicka and physical damage.

Effect: An extra 50 points to Armor (damage resistance) and an extra 25% magic resistance.

Location: This stone can be found east of Morthal. It’s up a mountain northeast of the Shrine of Mehrunes Dagon. (Map)

As you would imagine given the name, The Lord Stone is the defensive version of the Lady Stone given its effects offer resistance to both physical and magical attacks.

The Lover Stone

Those under the sign of The Lover always feel a Lover’s Comfort.

Effect: All skills improve 15% faster.

Location: The Lover Stone can be found east of Markarth, just north of Kolskeggr Mine which is a great source of gold ore. (Map)

A really great all-round stone if you want something that you set and forget. While it may offer the 20% improvement to skills that The Guardian Stones has, you could sacrifice the 5% knowing that all of your skills.

Just note that The Lover Stones bonus does not stack with any well rested or lovers comfort bonuses.

The Ritual Stone

Once a day, those under the sign of The Ritual can reanimate nearby corpses to fight for them.

Effect: Once a day you can reanimate corpses around you (within 75ft) .

Location: You can find this standing stone east of Whiterun just off the roadside. (Map)

This is one of the weaker stones given it can only be used once a day and while the effect of reanimating a whole bunch of corpses is cool, it’s just not practical or useful enough.

The Serpent Stone

Once a day, those under the sign of The Serpent can use a ranged paralyzing poison on opponents.

Effect: This can be used once a day and causes 25 points of poison damage and paralyzes enemies for 5 seconds.

Location: The Serpent Stone is east of Winterhold. If you come across the Wreck of The Pride of Tel Vos, head northeast and you’ll find it on an island. (Map)

Again, another weak stone, perhaps even weaker than The Ritual Stone. Given the damage it deals there are far better stones to use and ways to kill or slow down your enemies.

The Shadow Stone

Once a day, those under the sign of The Shadow can become invisible for an extended period.

Effect: This can be activated once a day and you will become invisible for 60 seconds.

Location: This stone can be found south of Riften, near Nightingale Hall. (Map)

While it’s not great being able to use this only once a day, it still could be quite useful in a pinch if your sneak skills are low or there is something you can’t quite get by. You might be better off just making potions instead though.

The Steed Stone

Those under the sign of The Steed can carry more and do not suffer a movement penalty from armor.

Effect: All Armor becomes weightless and there is no speed penalty associated with the Armor’s weight. You are also granted an extra 100 points to fortify carry.

Location: The Steed Stone can be found northwest of Solitude, near Ironback Hideout.(Map)

The Tower Stone

Once a day, those under the sign of The Tower have the option to automatically open an Expert or lower lock.

Effect: You can unlock any lock up to expert difficulty, instantly, once per day.

Location: This can be found directly between Dawnstar and Winterhold, on the coast on a cliff. (Map)

This is probably the worst stone out there given it can only be used once per day and the pay off is opening a lock that you could quite easily do on your own. Avoid this one.

Standing Stones and Other Bonuses

Sleeping in Skyrim is useful for two reasons. Firstly, it recovers your health, stamina, and magicka. More importantly it can provide a resting bonus that means skills improve faster. There are three types of resting bonuses and they last for 8 in-game hours.

BonusSkill IncreaseMethod
Rested5%Sleep in a normal bed.
Well Rested10%Sleep in a bed that you own. This means either in a house or homestead that you have purchased or at a bed paid for at an inn.
Lover’s Comfort15%If you have a husband or wife and sleep in a home that they also live in, sleep in the same bed to receive this bonus.

The best part thing about these bonuses is that they stack with the Guardian Stones. This means that if you have a Guardian Stone active as well as one of the rested bonus too, you can gain an extra 25% to 35% bonus to skill increases.

How to Have Two Standing Stones Active

It is possible to have two standing stones active at the same time but of course, like with everything in Skyrim, you’ll need to go on an adventure first. You’ll also need the Dawnguard expansion too!

To have two standing stones active at one time you’ll need the Aetherial Crown. Here’s how to go about getting it.

  1. Read The Aetherium Wars – This is a tome found in multiple locations but the easiest is in the Bard College after the right turn from the entrance it is on a small bookcase.
  2. Travel to Arkngthamz which is northwest of Falkreath and directly southeast of Dushnikh Yal. (Map)
  3. (Optional) Retrieve the unique bow Zephyr. which is worth it as it is one of the best bows in skyrim.
  4. After collecting the journal, locate and retrieve the four Aetherium Shards.
  5. Locate the Aetherium Forge inside the Ruins of Bthalft.
  6. Choose your reward: the Aetherial Crown, Aetherial Shield, or Aetherial Staff.

With the Atherial Crown you could have one Guardian Stone, The Lover’s Stone and Lover’s Comfort activated giving you a whopping 70% bonus to skill increases.


What is the best standing stone in Skyrim?

While it depends on your play style, one of the three guardian styles is the best as they also stack with resting bonuses. If you want a set and forget type of stone, The Lover's Stone is a good option.

Is there a smithing stone in Skyrim?

To increase your smithing skill you'll want the warrior stone which boosts all warrior skill increases by 20%. Smithing is counted as a warrior skill. The warrior stone is one of the first you encounter at the start of the game near Riverwood.

What Stone helps with enchanting Skyrim?

To increase your enchanting skill you'll want the mage stone which boosts all warrior skill increases by 20%. Enchanting is counted as a mage skill. The warrior stone is one of the first you encounter at the start of the game near Riverwood.

What does the lovers Stone do in Skyrim?

The Lover's Stone will increase the rate in which all skills improve by 15%. This does however remove any rested bonuses you may have.

How many stones can you activate in Skyrim?

There are 13 stones in Skyrim and only one can be activated at a time. Visiting another stone will turn off the previous. If you have the Dawnguard expansion and get the Aetherial Crown, you can have two active at a time.

Does the Warrior Stone affect archery?

While you may think that Archery is a warrior's skill, it is counted as a sneak skill and therefore is affected by The Thief Stone rather than the Warrior Stone.


Amar Hussain


Amar is the Chief Nerd at Nerd Bear and can be mostly found binge-watching Netflix, researching tech, shooting things on PS4, and arguing over who is the strongest Avenger.

Skyrim Exploration Suite

Skyrim:Standing Stone

IconStone Name
(IDs)Description and EffectsLocationSR-icon-spell-Magic Hat.pngThe Apprentice Stone
Ability ID: 000e5f4e
Weakness ID: 0010e439Those under the sign of The Apprentice recover Magicka faster, but are more susceptible to Magicka damage:On an island in the Hjaalmarch marsh, just north of Fort Snowhawk, west-northwest of Morthal(map).SR-icon-spell-Magic Hat.pngThe Atronach Stone
Ability ID: 000e5f51Those under the sign of The Atronach absorb a portion of incoming spell damage and have a larger pool of Magicka, but recover it more slowly:In the southernmost part of the hot springs of Eastmarch, northwest of Mistwatch and east-northeast of Darkwater Crossing(map).SR-icon-spell-Magic Hat.pngThe Lady Stone
Ability ID: 000e5f54Those under the sign of The Lady regenerate Health and Stamina more quickly:On an island in Lake Ilinalta, directly north of Falkreath(map).SR-icon-spell-Magic Hat.pngThe Lord Stone
Ability ID: 000e5f58Those under the sign of The Lord are more resistant to both Magicka and physical damage:East of Morthal, northeast of the Shrine of Mehrunes Dagon, about one and a half times as far as Stonehills, up on the mountain. Follow the path starting north of the Hall of the Vigilant to the Shrine and the Stone (map).SR-icon-spell-Magic Hat.pngThe Lover Stone
Ability ID: 000e5f5a
Perk ID: 000e5f57Those under the sign of The Lover always feel a Lover's Comfort (All skills improve faster):East of Markarth, just north of Kolskeggr Mine(map).SR-icon-spell-Magic Hat.pngThe Mage Stone
Ability ID: 000e5f47
Perk ID: 000e5f49Those under the sign of the Mage will learn all magic skills 20% faster:
  • All magic skills improve 20% faster
Southwest of Riverwood, by the roadside, one of the Guardian Stones (map).SR-icon-spell-Reanimate.pngThe Ritual Stone
Ability ID: 000e7329Once a day, those under the sign of The Ritual can reanimate nearby corpses to fight for them:East of Whiterun, by the roadside, above the entrance to Graywinter Watch(map)SR-icon-spell-Paralyze.pngThe Serpent Stone
Ability ID: 000e5f61Once a day, those under the sign of The Serpent can use a ranged paralyzing poison on opponents:Directly east of the College of Winterhold and northeast of the Wreck of The Pride of Tel Vos, on an icy island in the Sea of Ghosts(map).SR-icon-spell-Invisibility.pngThe Shadow Stone
Ability ID: 000e732aOnce a day, those under the sign of The Shadow can become invisible for an extended period:South of Riften, near Nightingale Hall(map).SR-icon-spell-Magic Hat.pngThe Steed Stone
Ability ID: 000e5f5e
Perk ID: 0001bac9Those under the sign of The Steed can carry more and do not suffer a movement penalty from armor:
  • Worn armor of all types is weightless and carries no speed penalty
  • Fortify Carry Weight, 100 pts (only adds 50 points extra carry weight in survival mode)
Northwest of Solitude, near Ironback Hideout(map).SR-icon-spell-Magic Hat.pngThe Thief Stone
Ability ID: 000e5f45
Perk ID: 000e5f46Those under the sign of the Thief will learn all stealth skills 20% faster:Southwest of Riverwood, by the roadside, one of the Guardian Stones (map).SR-icon-spell-Alteration.pngThe Tower Stone
Ability ID: 000e7328
Perk ID: 000e7326Once a day, those under the sign of The Tower have the option to automatically open an Expert or lower lock:
  • Unlock any lock, up to Expert in difficulty
About halfway between Dawnstar and Winterhold, on a high snow-covered cliff (map).SR-icon-spell-Magic Hat.pngThe Warrior Stone
Ability ID: 000e5f4c
Perk ID: 000e5f4aThose under the sign of the Warrior will learn all combat skills 20% faster:
  • All combat skills (excluding Archery) improve 20% faster
Southwest of Riverwood, by the roadside, one of the Guardian Stones (map).

Standing stones skyrim

The 13 Standing Stones Of Skyrim, Ranked

As the fifth chapter in TheElder Scrolls franchise, Skyrim made leaps and bounds in simplifying old-school RPG elements into a more easily accessible final product. This was clearly the right move, given how popular the series has remained (and how often it's been ported).

One of the more drastic changes Skyrim made was in character creation. In previous Elder Scrolls games, the player selected a Birth Sign for their character; however, in Skyrim, they instead have the option of choosing a Standing Stone blessing. The obvious benefit is the ability to switch between the thirteen options whenever a player likes. But why do that? Because of the blessings, naturally.

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Each Standing Stone (found scattered throughout Skyrim) grants the player a unique ability or bonus found nowhere else in the game. But which blessing is right for which player? Well, it depends on any given person's playstyle. That said, in general, some blessings are certainly more beneficial than others.

Updated April 27, 2021 by Erik Petrovich: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim made leaps and bounds in making complex RPG systems accessible to the average person, whether they play games or not. In Skyrim, players can choose a Standing Stone blessing that grants the player a unique ability or bonus found nowhere else in the game, and this is one of the most memorable and defining mechanics of Bethesda's game. Although each blessing has its use, some Standing Stones are certainly more beneficial than others. What are the exact effects offered by each Standing Stone?

13 The Atronach Stone

  • Convert half of enemy spell damage into Magicka
  • Regenerate Magicka half as fast

Choosing the Atronach Stone is a double-edged sword. On one hand, it lets the player convert half the damage of enemy spell attacks into Magicka, preventing damage. However, the blessing also makes the player's Magicka regenerate 50% slower – this makes absorbing enemy spells a necessary means to the player's spellcasting ends.

The blessing is balanced, somewhat, by a slight bonus to the player's maximum Magicka, but ultimately this ability will lead to you taking more hits, when it's usually best to take less. This blessing is situationally ideal for a spellcaster who expects to face other spellcasters, but it's not great for 24/7 use on any character. The Atronach Stone is found in Eastmarch, East-by-Northeast of Darkwater Crossing.

12 The Apprentice Stone

  • Regenerate Magicka twice as fast
  • Receive double damage from enemy spells

Another double-edged sword, the Apprentice Stone is in many ways the polar opposite of the Atronach Stone. This Standing Stone lets the player regenerate Magicka twice as fast but also makes them twice as vulnerable to magic-based attacks. Instead of taking spells to the dome to regenerate Magicka, the player must dodge incoming spells to maximize this Stone's potential.

This blessing is ideal for a spellcaster who is particularly sure of their ability to evade incoming attacks, but it is also very useful against non-Magicka-based enemies like bandits, raiders, and guards. The Apprentice Standing Stone can be found in a marsh in Hjaalmarch, directly North of Fort Snowhawk and just west of Morthal.

11 The Tower Stone

  • Unlock an Expert-level lock, or lower
  • Only usable once each day

Accepting the blessing of the Tower Stone grants the player the unique ability to unlock any Expert-level lock or below without having to go through the lockpicking minigame. This Standing Stone ability can only be used once each day though, and the player must either play long enough or wait long enough before being able to use it again.

This blessing is best-suited for players who don't use the Lockpicking skill often, as it provides a definite way to unlock all but the toughest of locks. It's a good choice for thief types, too, for its reliability. The Tower Stone can be found on a cliff roughly halfway between the cities of Dawnstar and Winterhold in the Reach – it can be seen from far away, so look up to the hills if you're lost.

10 The Ritual Stone

  • Resurrect dead NPCs within 75 feet for 200 seconds
  • Only usable once each day

A player who chooses the blessing of the Ritual Stone will be given the daily power to mass resurrect the dead on a limited basis. Once per day, the player can reanimate all dead bodies around them in a 75-foot radius to fight for them for 200 seconds. The resurrected thralls will fight for the player and follow them until they collapse to the ground.

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This Standing Stone is best used right at the end of a long, arduous dungeon, after fighting several high-power enemies before the final encounter. Use the power on your recently slain foes, and watch them turn against their former allies. The Ritual Standing Stone can be found just East of Whiterun, above the entrance to the troll-infested cave Graywinter Watch.

9 The Lord Stone

  • Physical Defense increased by 25%
  • Magical Resistance increased by 25%

The Lord Stone is a popular choice for front-line fighters as its blessing increases a player's defense in two major ways. Not only is the player's physical defense increased, but they are also given a 25% Resist Magic effect. However, with its ability to protect a player from both physical and magical attacks, the Lord Stone is an excellent choice for almost any playstyle.

This is especially true for players who don't want to waste valuable game time tracking down unique magical armor found throughout Skyrim. It's simple, but it's effectively the best way to increase your defense without picking up new gear. The Lord Stone can be found far to the Northeast of the Shrine of Mehrunes Dagon on the summit of a mountain.

8 The Steed Stone

  • Armor no longer encumbers the player at all
  • 100-point increase in player carrying capacity

The Steed Stone grants players a few useful effects related to moving around the world efficiently. While under this Standing Stone's blessing, the player won't be encumbered by worn armor and will receive a 100 point boost to their total carrying capacity.

This blessing is ideal for virtually every playstyle but especially suited for players who partake in the economic side of the game. It lets you carry more trade goods, more crafting materials, and makes it far easier to bring huge dungeon hauls back to their homebase. The Steed Stone is located NorthWest of Solitude, near the Ironback Hideout.

7 The Lady Stone

  • Regenerate Health 25% faster
  • Regenerate Stamina 25% faster

The Lady Stone is a Standing Stone that improves the player's ability to heal and regenerate stamina. Under this Standing Stone's blessing, the player will get a 25% boost to their health and stamina regeneration – it's a simple one, but quite effective for close-combat characters.

RELATED: Skyrim: 10 NPCs You’ve Never Talked To

Warriors, thieves, and close-combat mages will all find this stone useful in maintaining constant heavy attacks and mitigating some of the repercussions of close combat.  The Lady Standing Stone can be found on a small island in Lake Illnalta, located just North of Falkreath.

6 The Guardian Stones: The Warrior (The Warrior, The Mage, The Thief)

  • All Warrior-related skills are learned 20% faster
  • One-Handed, Two-Handed, Unarmed, and Block are included

Once the tutorial mission is complete, players are tasked with heading to Riverwood (and, eventually, Whiterun). But if a slight detour is made, or if the player follows Ralof, the player will find themselves in the presence of the Guardian Stones. These represent the Warrior, the Mage, and the Thief, and they provide new players with a Standing Stone blessing right away.

The Warrior Stone lets the player improve all combat skills 20% faster. These include One-Handed, Two-Handed, Unarmed, Smithing, and Block. This Standing Stone blessing is ideal for those who intend to focus on physical combat or who wish to spec into a new close combat skill. The Guardian Stones are all located in a cluster on a stone outcropping just South West of Riverwood.

5 The Guardian Stones: The Thief Stone

  • All Thief-related skills are learned 20% faster
  • Pickpocket, Sneak, Lockpicking, Light Armor, Speech, Alchemy, and Archery are included

The Thief Stone is another Guardian Stone, this time with an emphasis on stealth-related skills – it increases the rate the player can learn Thief-related skills by 20%. These skills include Pickpocket, Sneak, Lockpicking, Light Armor, Speech, Alchemy, and Archery. The Thief Stone blessing is ideal for thieves, assassins, and rangers who wish to take things a little more stealthily.

The Thief Stone is also useful for characters looking to pick up alchemy, speech, or lockpicking, as these skills are all useful no matter what class the player plays. Alchemy especially is useful in harder difficulties, while speech and lockpicking can help you access previously inaccessible options in the world.

4 The Guardian Stones: The Mage Stone

  • All Mage-related skills are learned 20% faster
  • Enchanting, Alteration, Conjuration, Destruction, Illusion, and Restoration are included

The Mage Stone lets the player improve all magic skills 20% faster. These include Enchanting, Alteration, Conjuration, Destruction, Illusion, and Restoration. The Mage Stone blessing is ideal for spellcasters and magic-users, but it's also useful for quickly leveling a new magic skill even for characters who haven't touched the Mage-related skills in their playthrough.

RELATED: Skyrim: 15 Tips To Get Off To A Good Start As A Beginner

While a player can only have one of the Guardian Stone blessings active at once, players who wish to increase all of their skills at once should consider heading to the Bards College in Solitude. There, you will encounter a series of miscellaneous tasks, and completing each one will grant a slight boost to every single skill.

3 The Shadow Stone

  • Turn invisible for 60 seconds when using the granted ability
  • Only usable once each day

Accepting the blessing of the Shadow Stone grants the player the ability to turn invisible for 60 seconds once per day. This Standing Stone blessing is especially useful if a player doesn't have access to an invisibility spell, or can't afford/craft a potion with the invisibility effect.

This blessing is best-suited for thieves and assassins who wish to remain unnoticed until the exact opportune moment. The Shadow Stone can come in quite handy during both the Thieves Guild and Dark Brotherhood questlines multiple times, trivializing certain missions entirely. The Shadow Stone is found near Nightingale Hall, South of Riften.

2 The Serpent Stone

  • Paralyze an enemy from a distance and deal damage to them
  • Only usable once each day

In Elder Scrolls lore, the Serpent is the most unique constellation in existence. Unlike all the others, the Serpent moves about the night's sky as it hunts the other signs. Only the three Guardians are capable of protecting the others from the wrath of the Serpent. It is also said that those individuals born under the sign of the Serpent will live the most unique and legendary lives of all. Some may become the greatest of heroes, while others will become the most feared of villains.

Taking the blessing of The Serpent Stone grants the player a once-a-day ranged spell that can be used to damage and paralyze an enemy from far away. Most paralyzation abilities require close range, making this ability particularly special. The Standing Stone of the Serpent can be found on an icy island in the Sea of Ghosts. It is East of the College of Winterhold and Northeast of the Wreck of The Pride of Tel Vos.

1 The Lover Stone

  • Gain a 15% increase in player ability to learn all skills
  • Does not stack with Lover's Comfort

One of the best benefits of marriage in Skyrim is the Lover's Comfort effect. Sleeping in the same bed as a spouse grants the player this effect, which allows them to improve all skills 15% faster. What if the player wants that sweet bonus, but doesn't want to engage with one of Skyrim's eligible bachelors or bachelorettes, though? That's where the Lover Stone comes in.

Widely considered the best Standing Stone in the game, the Lover Stone grants the Lover's Comfort effect all the time. While the Guardian Stones allow a player to increase roughly a third of their skills 20% faster, increasing all skills is the better choice, even if it technically five percent slower for some skills. Unfortunately, the Lover Stone and Lover's Comfort effects do not stack. The Lover Standing Stone can be found to the East of Markarth, just North of Kolskeggr Mine.

NEXT: Skyrim: 20 Best Wives & How To Marry Them


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Skyrim - Standing Stones Guide

Skyrim's Best Standing Stones Explained

One of Skyrim's unique features involves the use of 13 standing stones, each of which provides a different effect to the player character upon being activated. There are benefits and drawbacks to every stone, but some are overall more useful than others in the long run.

A large factor when it comes to Skyrim's longevity and replay value is its support for various different character builds, something many players take advantage of when returning to the game for subsequent playthroughs. Between racial abilities, spells and weapons, armor sets, enchantments, and skills, it seems that there's a nearly endless level of customizability available. The standing stones are another factor that can help change up the game experience - once all 13 have been found, players can swap between their bonuses by visiting each stone, trying out a wide range of helpful benefits.

Related: Elder Scrolls: How Alchemy Can Enhance Skyrim's Strongest Builds

The stones are scattered widely across Skyrim's map, so it will likely take some time to reach all of them, particularly for players who are just starting out. It might instead be more useful to look into the stones' abilities in advance and seek out whichever one seems most helpful for the Dragonborn's particular build. In light of this tactic, here are a few of the most helpful standing stones in Skyrim.

Best Skyrim Standing Stones - The Guardian Stones

The Guardian Stones are among the easiest to find locations in Skyrim, at least for first-time players who have just finished the tutorial, so they can easily be located and activated early on in a playthrough. Each one makes learning certain skills 20% faster - stealth skills for the Thief Stone, magic skills for the Mage Stone, and combat skills for the Warrior Stone.

Best Skyrim Standing Stones - The Lover Stone

Lover's Comfort, a temporary effect that allows the Dragonborn to learn skills 15% faster for 8 hours, is widely considered to be one of the best effects in Skyrim. The Lover Stone applies this same effect without wearing off - and without the requirement of being married and living with a spouse in order to acquire it.

Best Skyrim Standing Stones - The Steed Stone

Given that item collection is such a common habit among Elder Scrolls players - so much so that Skyrim's bookshelves let players display the miscellaneous things they've gathered - running out of inventory space is a common problem to run into, and it can be a frustrating experience to choose which items to leave behind in order to return to normal speed. The Steed Stone is one solution to this, giving the Dragonborn +100 carry weight and taking away weight and movement penalty from armors.

Best Skyrim Standing Stones - The Lord Stone

For players who find themselves getting repeatedly defeated in battle, the Lord Stone might be a good tool to consider taking advantage of. It provides 50 additional points of armor as well as an overall 25% resistance to magic, which can be stacked with other items to help reach the game's maximum cap of 85% magic resistance. Even when used on its own, the Lord Stone is one of the easier ways to make the Dragonborn more defensible against all of Skyrim's various threats.

Next: Skyrim Mods to Make You Feel Like A Real Dragonborn


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Ky Shinkle is a Senior Gaming Features Writer for Screen Rant as well as an overall avid gamer and writer. Her prior experience is primarily that of a narrative designer for video games, although her writing has covered all formats from screenplays and novels to stage scripts. A graduate of the Savannah College of Art and Design, when she isn't writing she works on digital media projects and other types of fiction writing. Ky currently works out of Ohio and enjoys spending her free time either playing RPGs or running with her dog.

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Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim - All Standing Stone Locations and Effects

Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Special Edition is now available, and if you want to make the most of the game, and the abilities your character holds, you’re going to need to use the game’s Standing Stones. In this article we’ll be teaching you the location of each Standing Stone in Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, as well as providing a small bit of information about its effects. 

Standing Stones work as boosters for the various abilities and attributes that characters can have in the Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Remastered. Each stone features a set of special effects that are applied to your character when activated, and only one stone can be used at a time. This means you will need to pick and choose the one that works best for you. In order to allow you the ultimate amount of customization, we’ve put together this guide, including images, to help you find each Standing Stone for ease of access. 

The Guardian Stones 

This trio of Standing Stones is actually the first set that you find in Skyrim. Shortly after exiting Helgen, as you make your way down the mountain path towards Riverwood, your companion will make not of the Guardian Stones as you grow close to them. Head up to them when he stops and choose whichever one works best for you. This is also the only time you’ll find multiple Standing Stones in one place together. 

The Thief Stone 

Useful for those wanting to take advantage of stealth, this Standing Stone can be found with the trio of Guardian Stones just outside of Riverwood. Grants players 20% faster increase to all stealth skills.Take a look at our beginner tips for Skyrim players to find out some easy tips and tricks to help you stay alive in the game. 

The Warrior Stone 

This Standing Stone can be found among the three Guardian Stones along the path that leads from Helgen to Riverwood. You’ll find it just after completing the starting quest, Unbound. Grants players 20% faster increase for all combat skills. 

The Mage Stone 

The final Standing Stone located among the Guardian Stones outside Riverwood, this Standing Stone is great for those looking to make the most of Skyrim’s rich history of magic. Activating this Standing Stone will grant the player a 20% increase to all magic skills. Make the most of Skyrim’s magic system by learning how to add new mods to Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. 

The Lover Stone 

To find this Standing Stone, make your way to Markarth on the western side of the map. Travel to the city, then head out and past the tables. Follow the road until you come to the last bridge below the entrance to the city. Turn left on the path and follow it around until you notice a clear area where you can travel up the mountain. Follow this path around to find the Lover Stone standing at the edge of a cliff. Activate it to gain a 15% faster increase to all your skills. 

The Apprentice Stone 

Make your way to the city of Morthal, and then head northwest through the marsh and swamp towards Fort Snowhawk. You can find the Apprentice Stone by continuing north of the fort until you spot this Standing Stone among the marshy landscape. Activating this Standing Stone will cause you to recover Magicka twice as fast, while also making you twice as vulnerable to Magicka damage. 

The Atronach Stone 

The Atronach Stone - which grants you 50 extra points of Magicka, 50% Absorb spells, and -50% Magicka regen - can be found just northwest of Mistwatch, which is located in the large valley on the eastern side of Skyrim. Head out of Mistwatch and northwest until you spot this Standing Stone overlooking the valley. 

The Lady Stone 

Players can find this Standing Stone immediately due west of the Guardian Stones, which are located outside Riverwood. Head west out of Riverwood, and follow the river along until you spot a large island in the lake, near Half-Moon Mill and Inalta’s Deep. The Lady Stone can be activated from the island and will grant players the ability to regenerate health, as well as a 25% increase to stamina regeneration. 

The Lord Stone 

Located just southwest of Frostmere Crypt, the Lord Stone can be activated by traveling up into the mountains from the crypt. Look out for Standing Stone at the edge of a cliff. There are a few bandits in the area, with a large campfire in front of the Standing Stone. Activate this Standing Stone to receive 50 points in damage resistance and a 25% increase to magic resistance. 

The Ritual Stone 

To find this Standing Stone you will need to head east of Whiterun and cross over the river. Follow the path until you spot a stone arch with a set of log stairs leading up a small hill. Follow the stairs to the top to find the Ritual Stone being guarded by a Novice Necromancer. Activating this Standing Stone will allow you to raise the dead all around you once a day. 

The Serpent Stone 

Located in the far northeastern reaches of Skyrim, this Standing Stone can be located off the coast where you find the College of Winterhold. Use the islands that are strewn along the coast to head past the Wreck of the Pride of Tel Vos and look out for a stone archway that marks the Serpent Stone’s location. Beware of the Ice Wraith guarding the area. This Standing Stone allows the user to paralyze a target and hit them for 25 points of poison damage once a day. 

The Shadow Stone 

Players can find this Standing Stone just south of the city of Riften, which is located in the far eastern reaches of Skyrim. Head south out of the city and look for this Standing Stone just past Nightingale Hall. Activating the Shadow Stone will give the player the ability to go invisible for sixty seconds once per day. 

The Steed Stone 

The second to last Standing Stone in the game, the Steed Stone grants the player an addition 100 carry weight, and also makes it so that equipped armor has no weight and also causes no movement penalty. You can find this Standing Stone by heading to the northern edge of the map and looking along the small road in the snowy mountains near Ravenscar Hollow and Ironback Hideout. 

The Tower Stone 

The thirteenth Standing Stone in the game, the Tower Stone is one of the most useful for those looking to make use of Skyrim’s stealth system. When activated this Standing Stone grants the user the ability to unlock any expert level lock (or lower) once per day. To find this Standing Stone, and activate its effect, head west out of Winterhold and follow the coast until you locate this final Standing Stone on the edge of a peninsula. 

That’s all the Standing Stones in the Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Remastered, so be sure to learn each location and mark them on your map. These items play an important part in your characters evolution, so be sure to check them out and find out which one works best for your playstyle and chosen archetype. Learn more about Skyrim, and all its hidden secrets by taking a look at our Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim walkthrough and guide. 


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