15 Best & Strongest Shields in SkyrimThis post may contain affiliate links. If you buy something we may get a small commission at no extra cost to you. (Learn more).
There’s no better companion for a powerful one-handed weapon than a mighty shield.
While it’s important to cause damage, knowing how to take a hit might be the difference between your blood being shed and a victory.
A good shield will help you make your way through the foes that stand in your way with the least possible damage. And some of these shields are quite unique. You’ll have to go through hell to get some of them.
Don’t worry, though – your efforts will be truly rewarded. Many of these shields are obtained during the early stages of the game. They might last you longer than you ever play.
Make sure you’re well-equipped with one of these masterfully-crafted pieces of armor that will go well alongside any weapon.
They’ll defend you as well as your bodywear. Use them wisely!
15. Nordic Shield
The mighty Nordic shield can only be obtained if you own the Dragonborn DLC. However, it’s one of the best shields that you can get in the game.
Its design has a lot of unique features that make it an appealing piece of armor, even to people who don’t deem it worthy of protecting them from danger.
It can be found as random loot in the Dragonborn DLC, and it can be easily upgraded with Quicksilver Ingots.
14. Falmer Shield
The Falmer shield can be crafted and upgraded as most other pieces of Falmer wear – using raw chitin and combining it with other materials.
This oddly-shaped shield can be found in almost any dungeon in the game where you can find Falmer creatures. So it’s not as uncommon as other pieces of armor on this list.
This shield does have quite an odd design. Many players seem to dislike its organic nature.
However, it’s sure to provide you with some decent cover during the early stages of the game.
13. Stalhrim Shield
The Stalhrim shield is one of the best light shields in the game. It’s also added with the Dragonborn DLC.
You can purchase it from Baldor Iron-Shaper or find it as loot. It provides better coverage than even some of the heavy shields in the game.
It will only start appearing at level 35, so this isn’t one of those pieces of wear that you can obtain during the early stages of the game.
This shield is great at resisting frost damage thanks to the properties of Stalhrim, so be sure to place defensive enchantments on it to maximize its effectiveness.
12. Orcish Shield
The Orcish shield defends for 30 points. That places it among the most powerful shields in the game.
It can be crafted with Orichalcum and found across Skyrim after leveling up to level 25.
Its beautiful and elegant shape make it one of the most sought-after shields in the game, with warriors from all over Tamriel trying to get their hands in one of these items.
11. Ebony Shield
The Ebony Shield is a basic but effective shield.
It offers over 30 points of protection. That makes it one of the best in the game when it comes to defensive capabilities when unenchanted.
An enchanted version of the Ebony shield will let you go past almost any opponent in the game. That makes it ideal to be used by warriors of all sorts.
The black tint of this shield looks good. The shield itself fits perfectly with almost all types of heavy armor.
It might not look too good with a light set, so be warned if you intend to combine them.
10. Targe of the Blooded
With only 7 defense points, this shield has a pretty poor base defense.
There is, however, a good reason as to why the Targe of the Blooded made it so high up this list.
The shield has a lot of pointy spikes on its wooden surface. Those allow you to bash opponents with it.
Bashing enemies using the Targe of the Blooded will make them bleed for 5 seconds. That’s an enchantment that cannot be taken away from this shield.
9. Herebane’s Fortress
Herebane’s Fortress defends for 21 points. That makes it one of the best unique shields in the game.
It’s an elven shield, which means that it shares the design and shape of any other common elven shield out there.
On top of its defensive points being higher than average, this shield allows the wearer to increase their frost resistance by 50%. That enables them to take a lot of frost damage before going down.
We all know how inconvenient and common frost is in the lands of Skyrim. So carrying Herebane’s Fortress will let you harness almost unlimited power.
Unfortunately, it can only be obtained by accessing the game files, as Herebane was cut from the final release of the game!
8. Dawnguard Rune Shield
The Dawnguard Rune Shield is the shield that you want to carry when raiding the halls of the undead.
If you happen to get harmed while blocking with this shield, every undead around you will take damage.
The shield is enchanted with a holy aura that activates on impact. That prevents any undead from harming you without taking some damage themselves.
You can obtain it by completing the Lost Relic quest.
7. Shield of Ysgramor
With a solid protection level of 30 points, the Shield of Ysgramor has a unique shape that strikes fear into the hearts of your foes.
It’s an ideal shield to carry around if you’re facing hordes of magic opponents. That’s because it increases your overall health as well as your resistance to magic damage.
It’s definitely one of the best shields in the game. It will serve your cause regardless of which level you are.
6. Aethereial Shield
The Aetherial Shield comes with the Dawnguard DLC.
Its effect is one of the most unique abilities in the game. It allows you to hit enemies with it and make them become ethereal.
When an enemy is ethereal, they cannot harm you, nor can you harm them.
It’s a good effect if you’re looking to take a breather or simply get rid of trouble momentarily while you deal with other foes.
You can craft it in the Aetherium Forge while completing the quest Lost to the Ages. It cannot be obtained in any other way, but it can be upgraded once the quest is completed.
5. Dragonplate Shield
The Dragonplate shield is the second strongest shield in the game when it comes to protection points.
It’s a heavy armor piece. You can only obtain it by slaying a dragon and using its bones to craft this awesome piece of equipment.
You need a high level of smithing if you wish to create one of these shields, so be sure to be fully leveled up by the time you attempt to craft it.
It has a base value of 1000. That puts it among the most expensive shields in the game as well.
4. Daedric Shield
The Daedric shield doesn’t require that you have as high a level to craft it as the Dragonplate shield. However it defends far better than its dragon counterpart.
You can craft it using ebony ingots (and you can upgrade it with these ingots as well). But keep in mind that you’ll need a Daedra heart alongside the ingots.
It has a bae protection of 36. That makes it the best shield in base-game Skyrim, excluding any unique shield that we’ve added on this list.
If you want vanilla equipment, the Daedric shield is exactly what you need.
The Spellbreaker is a legendary shield. It was used by King Rourken during the biggest war in the First Era.
As a result, this shield has seen action for centuries. It has kept its powerful enchantment through the ages of men.
It is capable of withstanding a lot of magic damage. Using it to block will create a special ward that contains up to 50 points of magical damage.
It also has a protection of 38. That puts it even higher than the Daedric Shield in terms of basic defensive points.
2. Shield of Solitude
The Shield of Solitude might have low base damage, but its enchantments are nothing short of fear-inducing.
It augments your resistance to magic by 30%. It also allows you to block 35% additional damage.
That means that it becomes better as you grow stronger!
You’ll need to finish the Wolf Queen Awakened questline to obtain it.
1. Auriel’s Shield
Auriel’s Shield takes first place on our list because it basically lets you carry an additional Fus-Ro-Dah in your hands.
The shield stores the damage that it takes over time which is a really powerful effect. Once it reaches 15 hits, it allows you to release a powerful shout that will knock back even the strongest of foes.
It can be found in the Forgotten Vale Forest.