Soul Binding

You can increase the EP potential of the items you create by the process of soul binding.  In order to soul-bind an item you need to have a soul gem with something inside it. You may buy soul gems from Mages Guilds (rank 4 and above), Assassins Guilds (rank 5 and above) and from some temples. The gems look like diamonds and may be empty or contain some creature (the description box will tell you what the gem contains when you examine it using the "info" button).  If you buy empty soul gems, you must buy or make a soul-trap spell in order to fill it.

When you're ready to fill the soul gem, cast the soul-trap spell at the creature you want to collect.  The creature gets a saving throw against the spell, so you'll either see "Trap Active" or "Spell effect failed" at the top of your screen.  Once you get the "Trap Active" message, you must kill the creature before the spell duration expires.  Once this is accomplished, the creature's soul is trapped inside the gem and ready for use.  Randomly encountered Dragonlings may be soul trapped, but will not work in the item-maker.  The only Dragonlings which will work in the item maker are those which you go after on Knightly Order quests or which you buy from the guild (I have found soul gems with Dragonlings in Ha-Thar of Antyphyllos fairly consistently -- 505,000 gp a pop).  Please note you may not soul bind humans.

"Danger, Will Robinson":  If you have cast a "Soul Trap" spell and do not have an empty recepticle, the creature WILL NOT DIE until the spell duration expires.  You can inflict hundreds, nay, thousands of points of damage on it and it will just stand there and sneer at you.  On the other hand, when the duration expires, a good sneeze will take care of it.

****Rumor has it that humans may be soul trapped by using Azura's Star (a re-usable soul gem).  The rumor also states that human souls provide thousands (over 100,000 in some cases) EP's and carry no disadvantages.  I have worked to prove or disprove this rumor and have been completely unsuccessful at it.  If you have some conclusive proof that it is possible to soul trap a human, please e-mail me.****

Once you have a filled gem, you may use it by selecting the "Soul Bound" disadvantage on the item-maker screen.  In the unpatched version of the game, it was possible to bind multiple souls into an item.  This ability was removed with the v.195 patch.

The major disadvantage of soul binding is that when the item breaks, the creature you bound is released. It will appear somewhere nearby, and will not be a happy camper.  In the case of most creatures, this is more of an annoyance than a threat.  In some cases (e.g. Daedra Lords, Vampire Ancients, and Ancient Liches), the release of the creature can result in a major confrontation.

In addition to the EP's they provide, some souls will add advantages or disadvantages to the item you create.  These advantages/disadvantages take up slots and may reduce the number of powers and side effects available to give the item.  Some souls cost additional GP to bind.  If there is a number in parentheses below the creature's name, it is the cost in GP to bind the soul into the item.

Creature EP's added Additional Advantages Additional Disadvantages
Rat 0 none none
Bat 0 none none
Grizzly Bear 0 none none
Sabretooth Tiger 0 none none
Imp 10 none none
Orc 70 none none
Orc Sergeant 100 none none
Orc Shaman 30 none none
Orc Warlord 240 none none
Nymph 100 none none
Spriggan 20 none none
Harpy 30 none none
Giant 30 none none
Centaur 30 none none
Slaughterfish 0 none none
Lamia 100 none none
Dreugh 100 none none
Spider 0 none none
Scorpion 0 none none
Skeletal Warrior 0 none none
Zombie 0 none none
Mummy 100 none none
(30,000 GP)
300 Regenerate Health in Darkness Deteriorates in Holy Places
Low Damage vs. Undead
(1,000 GP)

Feather Weight

Deteriorates in Holy Places
Low Damage vs. Undead

(9,000 GP)

Enhances Skill: Destruction

Deteriorates in Sunlight
Low Damage vs. Undead

Vampire 700 none none
Vampire Ancient 1000 none none
Ancient Lich 2500 none none
Dragonling 5000 none none
(15,600 GP)
100 none

Deteriorates in Holy Places
Low Damage vs. Daedra
Bad Reactions from Daedra

Daedra Seducer
(50,000 GP)

Good rep with all

Deteriorates in Sunlight and Holy Places
Health leech unless used weekly
Bad reactions from animals

Frost Daedra


Resist Frost

Fire Daedra
(??? GP)

Resist Fire
Enhances Daedric skill

Bad Reaction from Animals

Daedra Lord
(??? GP)

Potent vs. Daedra

Extra Weight
User Takes Damage in Holy Places

Flesh Atronach


Iron Atronach


Water Atronach
(52,400 GP)

Cast When Used: Resist Fire, Ice Storm
Cast When Held: Resist Cold
Strengthens Armor

Air Atronach

Ice Atronach


Fire Atronach 300

Cast When Used: Resist Fire

Earth Atronach
(7,000 GP)

Strengthens Armor

Extra Weight

Werewolf 90 none none


140 none none
Gargoyle 30 none none