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The purpose of this page is to document some aspects of Skyrim that are specific to the Nintendo Switch version of the game. The vast majority of gameplay is identical on all platforms (PC, Xbox, PlayStation, or Switch): the quests are the same, and the glitches are the same with the exception of lag issues being less prevalent on PC.

The Nintendo Switch version of Skyrim was released on November 17, 2017, with all add-ons included. It is based on the Special Edition and contains gameplay features and patches incorporated into that release. The Switch edition also features motion controls and compatibility with Nintendo's amiibo figures.

Missing PC Features[edit]

Some of the PC features that are not available on the Nintendo Switch are:

  • The console. This means that in many cases bug fixes that are used by PC players are not available to Nintendo Switch players. It also means that most cheats and exploits are not available.
  • The Creation Kit. The Creation Kit does not directly affect game play; rather it allows the game files to be viewed and edited. A lot of the information on the Wiki is derived from the Creation Kit, because it allows the factors controlling game play to be easily identified.
  • Mods cannot be used on the Nintendo Switch version of the game.
  • Achievements are not present in the Nintendo Switch version of the game.

Gameplay Differences[edit]

The new blue eye color option for Bosmer
  • Random events added by Dawnguard where vampires would attack settlements have been removed from the Nintendo Switch version.[1]
  • Bosmer have been given an additional eye color option at character creation: blue, man-style eyes.
  • Motion controls are available for fine-tuned aiming with archery and spellcasting.
  • Gesture controls are available for melee combat. Swinging the left or right joy-con controller will attack with an equipped weapon in that hand or block with an equipped shield. Swinging more forcefully performs a power attack or shield bash.
  • Gesture and controller rumble have been incorporated into lockpicking. While standard left and right thumbstick controls can still be used, holding ZL and rotating the left joy-con will rotate the pick, while holding ZR and rotating the right joy-con will attempt to turn the lock. Rumble represents the lock as a series of "notches," vibrating as the pick rotates across them, with a slightly stronger vibrating effect on the notches surrounding the sweet spot. The more difficult the lock, the more notches are present. This can make lockpicking substantially easier than on other versions of the game.
  • Saved games are now categorized for each character and grouped and displayed separately on the main menu.
  • Torturer's Hoods are now marked as playable and can be obtained as loot from the Torturer and generic Thief NPCs. They could not be obtained or used in the original release.

Interface Differences[edit]

Although the PC keyboard and Nintendo Switch controller clearly provide very different methods of interacting with the game, most of the controls work the same way. Some differences, however, include:

  • On the Nintendo Switch there is no way to toggle Automove.
    • Walking vs. running is controlled by how far forward you push the left thumbstick. Slight motions of the thumbstick will cause your character to walk; pushing the thumbstick as far as it will go will cause your character to run. (This is most obvious if you use third-person view).
  • The Quick Save and Quick Load shortcuts, as well as a number of other shortcuts only available on the PC, are not available on the Nintendo Switch. Save, Load and Quick Save are only accessible through the Menu options.

Downloadable Content[edit]

There is no downloadable content for the Nintendo Switch version. As in other Special Edition releases, all three official add-ons are already included, and cannot be disabled individually.

Zelda-themed Items[edit]

The chest at the Throat of the World

Three items based on The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild are available in the Nintendo Switch edition of Skyrim: the Master Sword, Hylian Shield, and Champion's Tunic. They can be obtained either through chests summoned with the amiibo power, or found in a hidden chest on the Throat of the World near the Word Wall without requiring any amiibo.

All items can be improved through crafting, and can be enchanted.

Name Type Tempering Weight Value Rating Notes
SR-icon-armor-Champion's Tunic.png Champion's Tunic
Light Refined Moonstone;
Perk: ?
5 300 46

Tempering requires 4 refined moonstone ingots. Uses three armor slots when equipped: armor, bracers, and boots.

SR-icon-armor-Hylian Shield.png Hylian Shield
Light Refined Moonstone;
Perk: ?
3 115 23
Name Tempering Weight Value Rating
SR-icon-weapon-Master Sword.png Master Sword
Refined Moonstone;
Perk: ?
12 235 12


The amiibo power

One feature unique to the Nintendo Switch version of the game is compatibility with Nintendo's amiibo figures: you can tap your amiibo figures against the Switch for a treasure chest of items to appear in-game. This is done by equipping the amiibo Lesser Power (found in the Magic menu, under "Powers") and casting it at the ground, where a glowing circle will appear, and then tapping the figure to the right Joy-Con controller. This can be done once every 24 real-life hours per amiibo.

The items inside the chest will vary based on the amiibo used:

  • Non-Legend of Zelda figures: food, gold coins, ingredients
  • Legend of Zelda figures released before May 19, 2017 (listed in table below): 20% chance for one of the three Zelda-themed items, plus additional items as listed in the table below
  • Legend of Zelda figures released after May 19, 2017: 20% chance for one of the three Zelda-themed items, plus armor, arrows, fruit, and/or weapons.

The chance of getting one of the Zelda items will increase with 5 compatible amiibo taps within five days (for instance, tapping the same one five days in a row, or tapping five compatible amiibo within one day), and resets after you get one of the items. While you can get unlimited amounts of the Champion's Tunic or Hylian Shield, there can only be one Master Sword.

The chests summoned by Legend of Zelda amiibo are styled after the chests from The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and play the "discovered-a-secret" chime from the Zelda games, while non-Zelda amiibo summon Skyrim-styled chests and are accompanied by chanting.

Specific Drops[edit]

The following Legend of Zelda amiibo, released before May 19, 2017, give specific categories of items in addition to the chance of getting a Zelda item:

Amiibo Name Series Drops
Link Super Smash Bros. Armor, arrows, fruit, weapon
Zelda Super Smash Bros. Bow, food, gems, ingredients
Toon Link Super Smash Bros. Armor, weapon
Sheik Super Smash Bros. Arrows, bow, mushrooms, shield, weapon
Ganondorf Super Smash Bros. Animal parts, gems, weapon
Wolf Link Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess Arrows, raw meat, weapon
Link - The Legend of Zelda 30th Anniversary - The Legend of Zelda Armor, arrows, fruit, weapon
Link - Ocarina of Time 30th Anniversary - The Legend of Zelda Arrows, fish
Toon Link - The Wind Waker 30th Anniversary - The Legend of Zelda Arrows, weapon
Zelda - The Wind Waker 30th Anniversary - The Legend of Zelda Armor, gems, shield
Bokoblin The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Raw meat
Guardian The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Arrows, gems, metal ingots, shield, weapon
Link (Archer) The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Arrows, bow, fish
Link (Rider) The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Arrows, mushrooms, weapon
Zelda The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Armor, gems, shield


  1. ^ Response from Bethesda spokesperson (Reddit), Nov 16, 2017