The Elder Scrolls V Skyrim Special Edition System Requirements Show Visual Upgrade Cost

Written by Jon Sutton on Mon, Oct 10, 2016 4:33 PM
System Requirements Optimum 1080p PC Build Low vs Ultra Screenshots GPU Performance Chart CPU List That Meet System Requirements GPU List That Meet System Requirements

We've come a long way since 2011's Skyrim, I'm sure you'll agree. Games look heaps better and the original Skyrim certainly looks of a different time now. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Special Edition is a halfway step to modern graphics, improving Skyrim's visuals in just about every way Bethesda can without remaking the entire game. Art and effects have been remastered. Volumetric lighting added, dynamic depth of field, screen space reflections and more. A half-step in graphical advancement would ordinarily indicate a half step in hardware demands, but as it turns out The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Special Edition is heaps more demanding than the original Skyrim. 

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Special Edition Minimum System Requirements

  • OS: Windows 7 64-bit 
  • CPU: Intel Core i5-750 2.66 GHz or AMD Phenom II X4 945 3.0 GHz
  • RAM: 8 GB System Memory
  • GPU RAM: 1 GB Video Memory
  • GPU: Nvidia GeForce GTX 470 or AMD Radeon HD 6870
  • DX: DirectX 11

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Special Edition Recommended System Requirements

  • OS: Windows 7 64-bit
  • CPU: Intel Core i5-2400 3.1 GHz or AMD FX-8320 3.5 GHz
  • RAM: 8 GB System Memory
  • GPU RAM: 3 GB Video Memory
  • GPU: Nvidia GeForce GTX 780 or AMD Radeon R9 290

So Elder Scrolls fans, here's the original Skyrim system requirements for point of reference. The two are almost incomparable. Fortunately this doesn't mean that Skyrim Special Edition is outrageously demanding however.

In general you just need a much more modernised PC to play Skyrim Special Edition, regardless of how high-end your hardware is. Windows 7 64-bit is now a necessity, as is DirectX 11 compatability and a pretty hefty 8GB RAM requirement. The latter is only going to up as you begin installing mods also.

Down at the minimum a relatively low spec rig will see you through with a first-gen i5 or AMD's Phenom II X4 945, coupled with a 1GB video card. The GTX 470 and Radeon HD 6870 are listed but you can expect to be able to run Skyrim Special Edition pretty well on a GTX 750 or something similar. The recommended specs for Skyrim Remastered are the absolute top-end about three years ago, but any semi-decent PC gaming hardware bought since 2013 should be plenty capable of playing Skyrim Special Edition with the graphics settings cranked up.

Remember, you can always check out how well your PC can run the The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Special Edition System Requirements here, where you can check benchmarking and performance from other users. Compare your graphics card to the The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Special Edition GPU benchmark chart.

Lastly a shout out to kjtmsmj11 for bringing these to our attention, much appreciated!

 

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10:28 Oct-16-2016

I wonder if modding will be possible on it! heheh

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11:30 Oct-16-2016

All the mods will be possible on the remastered version just like the original you can even transfer the save game from your old Skyrim game

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20:04 Oct-14-2016

How does my GS70 with a GTX 870M keep up with these requirements? :)

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20:48 Oct-14-2016

Your 870M is basically the same as a 660ti. Maybe just a little faster than a 660ti. So you are definitely above the minimum, but below the recommended. Have you played Fallout 4? If so then you can probably expect about the same performance from Skyrim SE.

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09:55 Oct-13-2016

Thought I would never see my card as recommended ever again :D

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21:21 Oct-13-2016

bruh..

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07:06 Oct-15-2016

real talk...

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18:31 Oct-12-2016

I guess I don't have to worry about the specs of this game anymore :)

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09:22 Oct-12-2016

I have never played Skyrim before. I only know the game by reputation. Perhaps it's time for me to get a copy and play it in the holidays.

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09:56 Oct-12-2016

People don't play Skyrim. They LIVE Skyrim.
Know what you're getting yourself into, it might be months before you come back.

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19:30 Oct-13-2016

Ive only played like 50 hours of it

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12:21 Oct-14-2016

Blasphemy!

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11:10 Oct-12-2016

If you work 5 days a weeks, 8 hours a day. Don't try it.

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17:37 Oct-12-2016

i have to agree with these guys :D. If you love RPGs, then you'll probably gain 40-50 pounds AT LEAST and forget to have a social life.

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20:59 Oct-12-2016

But how? I personally lost weight when I played Skyrim because I didn't have time to eat :D

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22:55 Oct-12-2016

Amen to that. I wouldn't stop playing until I got a headache and realized that my blood sugar was too low. ;)

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07:46 Oct-13-2016

You have never lived before

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00:49 Oct-15-2016

I put 300 hours into it. On Xbox. When I bought it for PC, I had to purposefully break the game with mods to keep myself from playing it till the special edition releases.

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15:49 Oct-11-2016

I wonder why the requirements are so high.From what I've seen,the visuals aren't that impressive.My current set-up looks better

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17:22 Oct-11-2016

Might be for 4k...

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20:00 Oct-11-2016

ye, I agree with you guys

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20:02 Oct-11-2016

Only one way to find out for sure. BENCHMARKS!

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12:27 Oct-11-2016

I'm guessing the engine they are using doesn't support DirectX 12 or Vulkan because this game could certainly use it especially Vulkan.

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08:12 Oct-11-2016

Now i remembered that i didn´t play Enderal yet.

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06:41 Oct-11-2016

Off topic, It's funny how a lot of people call pc gamers cheap, even though pc owners spend thousands on their rigs just to experience the best.

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06:45 Oct-11-2016

These same people then turn around and complain about console features they don't have, like fps & res, yet are unwilling to spend money on a pc themselves:/

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06:48 Oct-11-2016

They will also spend money on ps VR headsets, an upgraded ps4 pro, and 4k tvs, but not a pc, which a powerful pc would cost less than the 3 mentioned earlier!

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07:49 Oct-11-2016

Preferences. I would personally never use several hundreds of euros on a VR headset, I'm just not interested. But I will be getting a PS4Pro and 4K screen(not a TV) in the near future. With their combined price I could get a GTX 1070 PC, but console has more qualities I find more important than the ones PC has :)

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11:06 Oct-11-2016

Downvotes are understandable. I know that some people will never mature enough to take different opinions, it's OK :)

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13:30 Oct-11-2016

IF MATURITY MEANS TO BE A CONSOLE PEASANT THEN DOWN WITH MATURITY!

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13:44 Oct-11-2016

No, maturity means for example having an ability to digest and accept other's opinions. Don't worry, you might get there someday :)

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19:14 Oct-11-2016

No the downvotes mean they disagree with you. Simple as that.

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19:35 Oct-11-2016

I agree with StarWarrior00. Up/downvoting is just showing agreement or disagreement. It's essentially a miniature poll to see the general opinion on what was said in the comment.

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13:39 Oct-12-2016

I'm simply stating complaints I've personally heard myself. I have nothing against consoles, I own a few myself, but the arguments made against pc are idiotic.

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13:45 Oct-12-2016

Saying pc is too expensive, after buying a ps4 pro, 4ktv, and psvr, and still manage to complain about prices of consoles, fps and res is just retarded.

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13:48 Oct-12-2016

These same individuals then have the audacity to call pc gamers cheap, now you can't tell me you haven't seen these people spew BS like this.

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21:08 Oct-12-2016

So you have countered people that happily drop 1000+€ on gaming, then complain about price of PC gaming being too high, and at the same time saying PC gamers are cheap? That sound very conflicting to me, and I don't think I have countered people like that personally, gladly.

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01:46 Oct-13-2016

€400 for the console, then a few hundred more for the TV and sound system can easily amass €1000.


Arguments against PC I often see made are where prices exclude KBM, monitor, sound, etc, but then forget that the same applies for console, where you gotta have sound and TV.


Point being, it's implied by people.

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01:48 Oct-13-2016

I'd assume this whole "cheap" business comes from all the £££££ you can save when going crazy during Steam sales or such, a thing which is nonexistent on consoles

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06:09 Oct-11-2016

I am glad this is free for people that already have it. :3

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16:09 Oct-14-2016

yeah i think that was a great idea tbh. wait, you have an FX-9590??? why???

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16:37 Oct-14-2016

He needed a nice heater for the winter time, haha. I also wanna point out im not against amd I had a Phenom II for a long time

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23:59 Oct-10-2016

Is it safe to assume that this is running at 4K?
That seems to be the norm for requirements these days, despite still being very rare.

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02:30 Oct-11-2016

I doubt it. I am guessing that the recommended is for 1080p. I think that Skyrim SE will run almost identical to Fallout 4. The recommended GTX 780 or R9 290 will probably give tweaked ultra settings (a mix of high & ultra) @ 1080p/60+fps or tweaked high settings (a mix of medium & high settings) at 1440p/60+fps. imo

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20:01 Oct-11-2016

ye, maybe for 4k :D

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12:45 Oct-12-2016

No... I am sure that 4K will be supported, but I can say with almost pure certainty that the recommended specs are not for 4K gaming. Even 1440p would be a stretch.

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22:29 Oct-10-2016

There's no other way, I need a GTX 1060 soon!

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05:53 Oct-11-2016

Yes me too

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22:13 Oct-10-2016

Decent requirements tbh.

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19:48 Oct-10-2016

I know a lot of people said that this special edition is nothing but a money grab, and well it is, but for console gamers it is a blessing and even though pc players have modded the game to add all of these effects before my hope is Bethesda has optimized it well enough with 64-bit that we PC players will get a chance to have even better mods and just make this game pure eye candy for the lucky few with a great rig.

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22:00 Oct-10-2016

Well said! Hope they don't actually ruin the optimization for the sake of money grab(when it comes to AMD, intel and nvidia). I see barely any difference when comparing, especially when it comes to textures. Maybe more power-hungry lightning and terrain which is more tolerable for current gen GPUs? Still not a big reason to put such reqs, in my eyes. Either to even make it look comparable with games released today or to advertise Intel, AMD and nVidia imo.

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22:11 Oct-10-2016

Well said. Have this already for PS3 and PC. Now getting the PS4 version, after a few year break it should feel fresh again :)

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01:43 Oct-11-2016

Absolutely right and I wish they'd do it for Fallout 3/NV, too because holy crap the would-be-fixable instabilities.

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19:14 Oct-10-2016

Shii**

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19:05 Oct-10-2016

i want to believe!

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18:59 Oct-10-2016

Ok, this is Nice... i think i can run it on Ultra with some nice sweetFX... we're actually excited for this, right?

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18:28 Oct-10-2016

can i run it at compatibility mode if im using 8.1?

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18:35 Oct-10-2016

Why would you need to? The requirements just list the oldest version of Windows the game supports.

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17:57 Oct-10-2016

A bit higher than Fallout 4's requirements. That's pretty much what I expected.

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17:05 Oct-10-2016

ultra with my upcoming gigabyte 1060 3gb windforce ?

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17:28 Oct-10-2016

100% sure you can get max 60+fps with 1060 on your resolution

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21:01 Oct-10-2016

and what about 1080p btw ?

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22:30 Oct-10-2016

Sure! GTX 1060 3Gb is above requirements.

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22:01 Oct-10-2016

Another rare GTX 760 Oem dissapearing from Game debate :'(
Just kiding have fun with your GTX 1060 :D I'm planning to upgrade to a 1060 aswell. Do you happen to have a prebuild Medion-PC aswell? If yes I would really appreciate it if you could keep me up to date with if everything works ok for you. I'm a bit scared to upgrade my PC since it has the medion motherboard. Thanks in advance :)

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20:06 Oct-11-2016

i really love the 760 oem :( but its getting old now

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Can They Run... |

| 60FPS, High, 1080p
Core i7-10700 8-Core 2.90GHz GeForce RTX 2060 6GB 16GB
100% Yes [1 votes]
Core i5-9400F 6-Core 2.9GHz GeForce GTX 770 DirectCU II 2GB OC Edition 16GB
0% No [2 votes]
Pentium Dual Core B960 2.2GHz Radeon HD 6950M 4GB
0% No [2 votes]
| 60FPS, Medium, 720p
Athlon II X2 245 GeForce GTS 250 4GB
| 60FPS, High, 1080p
Ryzen 5 3500U 4-Core 2.1 GHz Radeon RX Vega 8 8GB
| 60FPS, High, 720p
Core i5-2400S 2.5GHz Radeon R5 340 (OEM) 4GB
| High, 720p
Core i5-2400S 2.5GHz Radeon R5 340 (OEM) 4GB
100% Yes [1 votes]
Ryzen 5 3500U 4-Core 2.1 GHz Radeon RX Vega 8 8GB
100% Yes [1 votes]
| 30FPS, Medium, 720p
Ryzen 5 3500U 4-Core 2.1 GHz Radeon RX Vega 8 10GB
| 30FPS, High, 1080p
Core i3-8100 4-Core 3.6GHz GeForce GTX 1060 3GB 16GB
100% Yes [4 votes]
| 60FPS, Ultra, 1080p
Ryzen 7 5800H 8-Core 3.2GHz GeForce RTX 3060 Mobile 32GB
100% Yes [5 votes]
| 60FPS, High, 1080p
Ryzen 7 5800H 8-Core 3.2GHz GeForce RTX 3060 Mobile 16GB
100% Yes [1 votes]
| 60FPS, High, 1080p
Core i7-4770K 4-Core 3.5GHz GeForce GTX 980 4GB 32GB
100% Yes [3 votes]
| 60FPS, High, 1080p
Ryzen 7 5800H 8-Core 3.2GHz GeForce RTX 3060 Mobile 16GB
100% Yes [2 votes]
| 60FPS, Ultra, 1080p
Core i5-10400F 6-Core 2.90GHz GeForce RTX 3060 Ti MSI Ventus 2X 8GB 16GB
100% Yes [8 votes]
| 60FPS, Medium, 1080p
Core i7-10700F 8-Core 2.9GHz GeForce GTX 970 Gigabyte G1 Gaming 4GB Edition 16GB
100% Yes [3 votes]
| 60FPS, High, 1080p
Core i5-11400F 6-Core 2.6GHz GeForce GTX 1650 Super 4GB 16GB
| 60FPS, High, 1080p
Core i7-3770 4-Core 3.4GHz GeForce GTX 1650 Super 4GB 16GB
0% No [1 votes]
| 60FPS, High, 1080p
Core i7-4770K 4-Core 3.5GHz GeForce GTX 980 4GB 32GB
66.6667% Yes [3 votes]
| 60FPS, High, 1080p
Ryzen 7 5800H 8-Core 3.2GHz GeForce RTX 3060 Mobile 16GB
100% Yes [1 votes]