Skyrim is set to get a new Survival mode. This new mode makes the game harder with the introduction of three main elements that affect your status: hunger, fatigue, and harsh weather.
Hunger decreases stamina and the ability to use most weapons. Eating restores stamina, and eating a certain amount of food will result in a Well Fed bonus. How much stamina is restored depends on the kind of food: raw food restores less than cooked food and some ingredients like raw meat can produce food poisoning, which in turn has a direct impact on health until it wears off.
Fatigue reduces the ability to recover stamina, magicka and also reduces the effectiveness of potions. Sleeping in a bed with enough frequency will restore and maintain the levels of fatigue, and you get the Well Rested bonus. In a similar manner to hunger, the amount of fatigue restored depends on where you sleep, is not the same resting indoors than outdoors.
Weather can affect health, movement and abilities. Travelling in rainy or snowing conditions increases your Cold status and can ultimately cause your character to die from exposure if you don’t equip it accordingly with warm clothing and armor. Eating certain meals like hot soup and actions like standing near a fire or holding a torch can help keep the character warm for a while. A sun or snowflake icon near the compass indicates if whether your character is getting warmer or colder.
Bethesda provided a map with helpful landmarks for the Survival Mode:
Additional effects of Survival Mode include:
- Health will begin to deplete immediately when swimming in cold water.
- Fast travel is disabled and long journeys can cause a character to arrive cold, hungry or tired to the destination.
- Health no longer regenerates.
- Sleeping in a bed is required to level up.
- Carry weight is reduced, encumbrance drains stamina and fatigue faster, arrows and lockpicks now have weight.
- You can contract new diseases from animals, with previous ones being more serious, and diseases will get worse if not cured. Eating raw meat can cause Food Poisoning.
- Keeping the character unwell for a while can cause afflictions which have additional effects like Weakened, Addled or Frostbitten. These will wear off naturally and can also be cured.
- Shrines now cure diseases only after being given a gold offering. Shrines built by you can be used for free.
- Perks & Standing Stones now grant less extra carry weight.
- Vampires and werewolves can restore hunger by feeding on their victims and are more resilient to cold.
The new Survival Mode is available for testing on Steam Beta. Console players must wait until early next month.
All players will get Survival Mode free for a week after launch.