7 surprising changes in Skyrim: Special Edition You Never Noticed

Skyrim: Special Edition made huge improvements on the original, but what you might not know is that there are a bunch of tiny changes that have had big impacts on immersion and convenience. Here are 7 of our favorites:

Toggle Sprint


In the original version of Skyrim, you had to hold down the sprint button or shift key in order for your character to run. Special Edition changes that. Now, all it takes is one push of the shift key to get your character moving (at least until his stamina runs out). I personally love this change, holding down the shift key was a minor nuisance for me.

Separate Save Files


As any Skyrim player with multiple characters knows, keeping track of save files can be a nearly impossible task. Skyrim: Special Edition solves this problem. Now, the save files are separated by character and organized further under each character. What was a minor problem for some players, or a major problem for someone like me who forgets which character is which on a daily basis, has finally been solved.

Better Water Physics

skyrimWater. The nectar of life. That one thing Bethesda really messed up in Skyrim. In the vanilla version, rain and snow could fall through roofs if you stood under a gazebo or awning. Wave physics were subpar at best, with the water completely ignoring collision. Hell, sometimes the water would flow uphill.

Torturer’s Hood


This one really bothered me in vanilla Skyrim. At the beginning of the game, an executioner is about to chop your head off before a dragon interrupts your beheading. The executioner dies, but his hood couldn’t be looted. With the release of Special Edition, this glaring problem HAS BEEN FIXED!

The executioner’s hood (in game name – torturer’s hood) is now lootable at the beginning of the game. Previously, the only way to acquire this item was by joining the Thieves Guild or the Dark Brotherhood. Now, everyone can traverse Skyrim with a super cool hood on.

Better Framerates in Big Battles


If you’ve ever seen a youtube video with hundreds our thousands of NPCs fighting each other, or even done it yourself through console commands, you know how bad the framerate drops are. Massive enemy encounters would make the game nearly unplayable.

However, this issue has also been fixed in Special Edition- framerates are SO much better. Now you can create huge battles and watch them without frustration.

Vampire Nerf


A huge problem with the Dawnguard Expansion was that vampires were just too strong. If you didn’t pay close attention to the settlements, vampires could kill many of the merchants that you might like to buy from.

Special Edition has nerfed the vampires, and now it’s not uncommon to see villagers beat the tar out of a lone vampire. Vampires aren’t underpowered now though, have no fear. A vampire can still pick off single villagers (or a few) just so long as they don’t get overwhelmed.

More Flowers


Special Edition can handle greater amounts of detail being on the screen at one time, so Bethesda has given us MORE FLOWERS. And other plants. But mostly flowers. Flowers are no longer so sparsely spread across Skyrim- they are plentiful.

YouTube video

This is big news for those of you out there who either a. really like flowers, or b. enjoy Skyrim’s alchemy mechanic. The game also looks even more beautiful because of it.