13 Best Skyrim Destruction Spells | Ranked from Best to Worst


Since its first appearance, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim has been able to gather a steady reputation among gaming enthusiasts. Even after more than a decade, Skyrim is still one of the most sought-after Action RPGs out there. Its good graphics, atmospheric audio, and massive explorable world have made the game what it is.

Among the contributing factors behind the fun experience Skyrim provides is undoubtedly the addition of the destruction spells. Like most other RPGs, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim allows its players to learn different destruction spells and do some significant damage to their opponents.

While the game offers numerous such spells, not all of them are equal in terms of power and efficacy. That is why we have curated some of the finest destruction spells to look for and master if you want to become more powerful. Read on to find out more.    

What are Destruction Spells in Skyrim?

Destruction spells are the primary attack skill for mages in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. This skill keeps upgrading as the player keeps dealing damage to their foes using destruction spells.

Best Skyrim Destruction Spells

Players have to remember that, unlike many similar role-playing games, Skyrim does not have any feature to craft magic from scratch. They can, however, harness any destruction spell available in the game and damage their enemies. Although this can appear as a serious drawback, it is worth noting that most spells of the destruction school do direct harm to their targets. So, adding them to your arsenal can be incredibly beneficial to any Skyrim player and increase their ability to deal considerable damage.

In case you were unaware, there are three separate branches of destruction spells. These are Fire, Frost, and Shock. Each of these three categories comes with its own features, costs, and effects.

Knowing about these specific types and what they are about is vital for all Skyrim players, as it can help them decide which spells to prioritize based on their playing style and preferences. 

➡️ Fire 

Fire spells are known for consuming the least possible Magicka when compared to the other two types of spells. They display average velocity while traversing and deal two kinds of blows – contact damage and over-time tapering damage. All the damage dealt is health-based.

Enemies hit with a majority of fire spells get a burn effect that enhances subsequent damages from other weapons. When cast at any waterbody, these spells boil some of the water in that area.

Fire Destruction Spells in Skyrim

Keep in mind that Dark Elves possess a 50% resistance to this type of spell, which can be advantageous during fire-breathing dragon fights.

For your info, oil that you can find spilled on the dungeon floors, crypt bases, etc., can catch fire from fire spells. You can utilize it during combats with various creatures, including the Dragonborn and their cohorts.

Plus, these spells have a special perk, namely Intense Flames, that makes your challengers escape the battlefield when their health is below 20%.

➡️ Frost 

Frost spells consume more Magicka than fire spells while traveling at a slower velocity when compared to shock spells.

These spells damage a target’s health and stamina. They can also decrease the movement speed of your enemies by 50% for a couple of seconds.

Frost Destruction Spells in Skyrim

The most common NPCs of Skyrim – Nords show a 50% resistance to this type of spell. This can come in handy when fighting with frost-breathing dragons. Plus, vampires also display resistance anywhere between 25% and 100% to frost damage, based on the stage of vampirism they are at.

Frost spell comes with a special perk called Deep Freeze that paralyzes any foe with health below 20%. 

➡️ Shock

Shock spells consume the highest amount of Magicka out of all three spells and have a shorter range. However, they show instant velocity and decrease both the health and Magicka (generally 50% of the health damage) of their targets.

Lightning Destruction Spells in Skyrim

Only storm atronachs and Orchendor are known to be 100% resistant to shock. Therefore, it comes in handy against most enemies. As shock spells deal instant damage, they become ideal weapons against moving targets.

Shock spell’s special perk is known as Disintegrate, which performs instant annihilations on enemies below 15% health.                    

Value of Destruction Spells for Mages and Spellcasters

In The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, destruction spells carry a lot of importance for mages and spellcasters, as it is the chief attack for them. These spells utilize natural elements like fire, frost, and shock to do considerable harm to enemies.

Even though destruction spells mainly target an enemy’s health, some diminish stamina and Magicka too.

Whenever a mage upgrades this skill, the Magicka cost to cast a destruction spell reduces. Interestingly, each branch of destruction spells has a special perk that deals extra damage.

Since some adversaries in Skyrim show resistance to specific spell types, the wise mages prefer to learn spells belonging to two or more elements.                                       

How to Learn Destruction Spells?

Skyrim players can learn destruction spells by reading spell tomes that they can buy from vendors. They can also go the looting route and acquire spells from chests and dead bodies.

These spell tomes portray an open palm with fire encircling it. If mages wish to learn more diverse destruction spells, they can learn it from Faralda.


Faralda is the destruction magic expert in the College of Winterhold. Besides selling you destruction spell tomes, she can train and make you a magic expert.

After attaining the Master level, players can begin the quest called Master Destruction, which gives them the Fire Storm spell. It also makes several other destruction spells available to buy from the lady mage Faralda.       

Now that you’re aware of destruction spells, we will check out some of the most powerful ones in the entire game:

Elemental Flare

Elemental Flare can be a blessing to anyone looking for spells that are cheap to cast yet deal overwhelming damage. Its Magicka base cost is 45.

elemental flare

This Novice-level (level 0) destruction spell blasts a bolt of fire, dealing 15 fire damage as well as 15 shock damage. Half as much damage also occurs in terms of stamina.

Elemental Flare also displays an area of effect.

While acquiring this spell is easy, Elemental Flare and its more powerful variants like Elemental Blast, Elemental Bolt, and Elemental Burst are only available to those who possess the Skyrim Anniversary Edition.                                                

Choking Grasp

Requiring 39 Magicka, Choking Grasp is a Novice-level spell that aids its casters in absorbing health from their targets.

It absorbs 8 health per second for 3 seconds, absorbing 24 health in total. In case you didn’t know, Choking Grasp has three higher-level versions that you can obtain in higher Destruction levels. This spell gives players vampiric abilities even when they are non-vampires.

Choking Grasp

Choking Grasp and all its variants come with Arcane Accessories Pack in Skyrim Anniversary Edition.

As it has a pretty low Magicka consumption, Choking Grasp can be a great choice for some inexpensive regeneration.  

Unbounded Flames, Freezing, and Storms

Unbounded Flames, Freezing, and Storms are three Master-level (level 100) spells that can deal remarkable damage.

The Magicka base costs for Flames, Freezing, and Storms are 50 per second, 50 per second, and 70 per second, respectively.

Unbounded Flames, Freezing, and Storms

Now, coming to the effects, Flames unleashes a line of fireballs that set your adversaries on fire and deal 50 fire damage per second. Freezing deals 50 frost damage to targets in range and also knocks them down. The Storms effect has a rather short range but deals a good 40 shock and 20 Magicka damage to the enemies. Besides, it can hit them with random lightning strikes as well.

There is no doubt about the power of these spells, but their wind-up might be a turn-off for some. But despite their wind-up, these concentration-based spells can deal huge damage to their targets.   

Mara’s Wrath 

Players can use Mara’s Wrath only when they have attained Expert level, and it costs 329 Magicka.

This spell causes 16 fire damage to melee enemies and turns the player Undead for 30 seconds. Mara’s Wrath also makes players immune to freezing waters that are otherwise harmful.

Mara’s Wrath

This destruction spell can prove to be especially useful when the mage finds themselves encircled with draugrs or skeletons.

Mara’s Wrath is obtainable with the Arcane Accessories Creation Club pack.       

Touch of Death

Found within the Arcane Accessories Creation Club kit, the Expert-level (level 75) Touch of Death spell costs 316 Magicka to steal 40 health per second for 4 seconds. So, over these 4 seconds, it steals 160 health.

Touch of Death

It is perhaps the best absorbing spell for personal health regeneration and can contribute to your survivability to a great extent.  


Ignite is an Apprentice-level skill (level 25) and consumes 30 Magicka to set a target on fire by delivering a blast of flames.

Once hit, it deals a 4-point damage per second for the next 15 seconds. While the fire damage is occurring, you can cast other spells to enhance the overall damage.

Players who are at lower levels of the game can benefit from such tactics and do some decent damage.

However, Ignite is at its best when combined with the Aspect of Terror perk and dual cast, able to deal a whopping 693 damage in the course of 15 seconds.  


Flames is a Novice-level spell and does low amounts of harm to enemies. It costs 14 Magicka per second to create a gout of fire that deals a 22-point damage per second.


If your enemies are already on fire when you cast the Flames spell, it will increase the damage dealt. Using this spell, it is possible to attack multiple targets simultaneously.

While the damage level is low, its Magicka consumption is low too. Thus, it is ideal for spamming.    

Chain Lightning

Chain Lightning, as its name suggests, deals 60-point damage to the health and 30-point damage to the Magicka of a target and then jumps to a nearby target.

This Adept-level (level 50) spell creates a chain of lightning bolts. Provided that your character has mastered Augmented Shock, the lightning bolt will leap on an extra target dealing a 60-point damage.

Chain Lightning

Chain Lightning’s Magicka base cost is 156, and it is perfect for defeating a large number of foes. This attack proves to be helpful in dungeons where there are lots of enemies.

Maybe the best thing about the Chain Lighting spell is that it does not take much accuracy. If it misses a foe, the lightning bolt will bounce around until it hits a target.

Also, friendly fire can happen while using Chain Lightning. So, you have to be careful. 

Ice Storm

Consuming 144 Magicka, the Adept-level Ice Storm spell summons a frosty whirlwind that causes 60-point health and stamina damage every second.

Ice Storm

Besides reducing their life force, Ice Storm wears your adversaries down too. This ensures that they cannot retaliate using powerful physical attacks, leaving more room for relentless offensives.     

Whirlwind Cloak

If you like to fight melee more than ranged attacks, Whirlwind Cloak can be a boon for you. This cloak focuses less on the elemental aspects.

Casting the Whirlwind Cloak spell deals decent damage and sends your opponents flying. This can create distance between you and your enemy by blowing them away.

Upon casting, the whirlwind surrounding your character has a 60-second duration.

It is an Adept-level skill and costs 338 Magicka. Once you have reached level 50, you can buy the Whirlwind Cloak spell from Talvas Fathryon.

Flame Cloak

Flame Cloak – an Adept-level spell consumes 289 Magicka and creates a wall of fire around your character for 60 seconds. When your foes come in range, they suffer an 8-point damage per second.

Flame Cloak

Flame Cloak can come in handy for melee fighting, as while active, its damage contributes to your character’s melee damage. If your targets are already on fire, Flame Cloak will deal additional damage.

While it will not cause harm to your followers, it can deal damage to innocent NPCs. 

Fire Rune

Fire Rune is an Apprentice-level spell that costs 234 Magicka and deals 50-point fire damage by exploding when foes are in proximity. It sets fire to your enemies for 2 seconds.

Fire Rune

Fascinatingly, having the Rune Master perk can give the spell’s range a boost of up to 100 feet.  


An Apprentice-level spell – Firebolt consumes 41 Magicka and releases a fire blast, causing a 47-point damage. FYI, Firebolt requires a temporary charge before the players can release it.


Enemies already on fire will take additional damage. The spell is perfect for long-range offensives.                        


As is clear from the above discussion, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim gives its players the ability to cast powerful magic spells on their enemies. There are three different types of destruction spells in the game that have different Magicka base costs, characteristics, and effects.

In this post, we have handpicked 13 of the best destruction spells in the entire game that can give mages an upper hand during times when they feel overwhelmed. Nonetheless, knowing both the capabilities of your spells and your enemies is equally important. This will help you figure out what opponents are resistant to what spells and strategize accordingly.

Now that you know the best destruction spells, you might want to further enhance your gaming experience by knowing how to increase carry weight in Skyrim. This will allow you to haul more weapons, armor, and potions!

Samyak Goswami
Samyak Goswami
Samyak Goswami, a passionate gamer and skilled gaming content writer, indulges in the world of virtual adventures. With a penchant for tinkering with tech, he brings a unique blend of expertise and enthusiasm to the gaming website.

Related articles

7 Best Simulation Games for Nintendo Switch to Experience Life-Like Adventures

Escape into fantastic virtual realms with best simulation games for the Nintendo Switch!

13 Best Free FPS Games on Steam: No Bucks, Just Bullets

You don't have to invest any money to play decent FPS games. Explore these free FPS games on Steam that deserve a spot in your collection!

Elden Ring: All 5 Godslayer Incantations Locations (Complete Walkthrough)

Godslayer incantations conjure black fire & inflict percentage-based damage. Here’s how you can find all 5 Godslayer Incantations.

How to Get the Gold Jointed Bracelet in Red Dead Redemption 2?

You need a Gold Jointed Bracelet to craft an Alligator Tooth Talisman; it reduces Dead Eye core drainage by 10%. Let’s see how to find one in the RDR2 world.