Skyrim system requirements announced (updated)

Skyrim’s launch is less than three weeks away!! To help you prepare for the game’s release, here’s the recommended and minimum PC requirements.

Recommended Specs

  • Windows 7/Vista/XP PC (32 or 64 bit)
  • Processor: Quad-core Intel or AMD CPU
  • 4GB System RAM
  • 6GB free HDD space
  • DirectX 9.0c compatible NVIDIA or AMD ATI video card with 1GB of RAM (Nvidia GeForce GTX 260 or higher (i.e GTX550Ti); ATI Radeon 4890 or higher).
  • DirectX compatible sound card
  • Internet access for Steam activation

Minimum Specs

  • Windows 7/Vista/XP PC (32 or 64 bit)
  • Processor: Dual Core 2.0GHz or equivalent processor
  • 2GB System RAM
  • 6GB free HDD Space
  • Direct X 9.0c compliant video card with 512 MB of RAM
  • DirectX compatible sound card
  • Internet access for Steam activation
Wondering if your setup is up to snuff? Check out this graphics cards hierarchy chart at Tom’s Hardware. And to discuss with fans, jump into our forums.
Updated: We’ve seen plenty of comments relating to the game only requiring six gigs of HDD space. Don’t worry… there’s still a ton of game in there. The total HDD space relates more to the compression opitmizations we’re able to do with The Creation Engine. Not only are do we think you’ll be impressed with how the game looks, but also how much faster it runs..


Reader Comments

  1. GTX 460 (which I have too) is several steps over the recommended. It’s also only a third less in terms of processing/speed than the best and most expensive card NVidia makes. So you’ll be fine. The specs are only slightly higher than Oblivion’s.

  2. My dream has come true, thanks Bethesda. You’re the best at optimizating games for PC. This is going to be the GOTY 2011, so far! I will buy it for PC, the mods are a MUST and seeing how well optimized it is, there’s no excuse.
    I hope CD Projekt Red to learn the lesson… I wasn’t able to run The Witcher 2 smoothly because of the bad optimization, but this time I will be able to play the real GOTY, no doubt.

  3. GTX560Ti
    4GB DDR2 RAM
    Intel Core 2 Duo E8400
    Windows 7 64bit

    Enough for high settings? What about ultra settings? I’m a little worried about my processor and ram. I’ll be upgrading to windows 7 and GTX560Ti but i don’t want to strip out my other components until next year. Thx!

  4. Do you think i can run this game solid on medium/high even though my video card isnt all that great?

    Model: Dell XPS L502X (Notebook)
    Processor: Intel i7 2630QM 2.0GHz
    RAM: 8gb
    System Type: 64-bit Operating system
    Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GT 540M (1.5GB)
    Driect 11x compatible

    • Yes. As far a mobile GPU’s go, the 540m is pretty good. I have one in my Sony Vaio, and it plays most games on high settings just fine.

  5. While im sure i could have been able to max it out with my evga gtx 260 ssc and my corsair dominator 4gb ddr3 ram (2x2gb), i decided i would bite the bullet and buy myself the evga gtx 560 and comrsair xms3 8gb ddr3 ram (2x4gb) on newegg to ensure my ability to max it out and allow me a few more years worry free of upgrading.

    Can’t wait for my Skyrim CE for pc to arrive from amazon on 11/11/11!

  6. Still haven’t heard if Skyrim will use more than 4 cores. Perhaps those of us with 6-core CPUs will enjoy a little extra headroom for those background tasks, assuming Skyrim fully utilizes 4 cores.

    Also want to know more about the Ultra setting. DX11? Do HD textures come with the High setting or is that all Ultra? I have a 6-core i7 970 @ 4GHz and a single GTX-480. Deciding on weather or not I should upgrade the graphics for Ultra settings. How about physics? Don’t recall hearing anything about that. Still going with Havok or will PhysX be supported?

    So. Many. Questions.

  7. I’m sure I’ll be fine and dandy as well.
    Back in June 2010, I built the following:

    win 7/64-bit
    4gb ram
    ati 5770

    Six months ago, I added another ati 5770 to try out crossfire.
    I’ve had no complaints on the graphical goodness/speed. I won’t be hitting the ‘Ultra’ settings and that’s fine and dandy with me. Bad Company 2, Witcher 2 and most recently Dead Island all run like candy. Well, less so Witcher 2, yet that was more of a problem on their end, not mine, according to user reports.
    I’m glad Bethesda is catering to the wide spectrum of pc computers out there, from the bare minimum to the early adopters of cutting edge tech.

  8. Seriously…Steam…If it’s steam exclusive, like without steam I can’t play this game, then I’m not buying it, I want freedom to CHOOSE steam, not be forced into it by big game developers like you who think they can change the market, And it’s not that I really hate steam all that much, It’s that I don’t feel it’s right that I lose my games if Valve decides that I broke one of their stupid rules and then all of a sudden OH YOUR BANNED ALL THOSE $60 GAME YOU BOUGHT? OH YEAH YOU CAN’T HAVE THEM. So yeah, Hate you Bethesda, Hope you and your Indian giving partner have fun with ruining the game market.

    • I have used steam for about 7 years or so and have had no problems. If you don’t want to risk losing your games then don’t break the law. I know a bunch of people who have used steam for as long as i have and have never had their games removed. Don’t pirate games and don’t phish other’s account and there really isn’t a single thing you have to worry about. Steam’s rules are not so barbaric that one wrong step and you lose everything. Play your games normally and you have nothing to worry about. The only types of bans i have encountered with people i know are vac bans which ban your account from vac secured servers for hacking. You still have the game and can play it as often as you want, you just cant play in vac servers anymore. This only effects games with vac which is pretty much just games made by valve.

      Steam integration was the deciding factor for me to buy the ce over buying the regular version on steam. I want all my games to be on steam from now on.

      I personally am sick of people bashing steam when it imo has kept pc gaming going recently, if steam wasn’t around we would have next to no good indie games and all trash console ports. So again, the only way to lose your games on steam is to go out of your way to make it happen by pirating/cracking steam games and phishing accounts from other users.

      • I used to hate Steam because it, well, sucked. It has lately been improved however, and now I am favorable to it. However, there is one aspect which still irks me. Offline mode is such a pain in the ass to get into. In fact, it’s downright impossible to get into Offline if you aren’t online first. Kinda ruins the point eh?

        Still, it’s a useful program, one that I like generally. I still wish that I wasn’t forced to use steam, but it’s better than Ubisofts DRM.

        I like how he bashes steam with racism. Great going!

        • It’s still nowhere near as good as no DRM.

          Let’s be honest, none of the DRM “solutions” have done anything to curb piracy (and that’s all that Steamworks is anyway, third party DRM). Then they make achievements to keep you distracted from the fact that by selling it to you as a service, you no longer get a fair use license with your video game purchases. In the end the only effect they have had is to prevent you from giving the software to someone else when you’re done with it, which incidentally also eliminates the second hand software market (which is really what this whole DRM thing is all about).

          Stop eating the s**t sandwich that is Steam, GfWL, and any number of other services that all boil down to DRM. Game software is a product, not a service.

          • Who cares?

            I’ve never wanted to resell my games. That’s why I bought them, so that I could play them when I wanted. Also, “product not service” is reflected in the flat rate fee, sooo… hardly angry.

            And, y’know, Steam makes it possible for me to learn about and obtain indie games I’d never otherwise hear of, nevermind find on the crowded shelves of the local retailer. Steam is why I got to play Braid, and Bastion, and Darwinia. So, other issues aside, I’ll pretty much never stop appreciating Steam, although I do agree the “achievements” are pretty goofy.

          • I have GTA:VC and GTA:SA on disc for PC, and I think GameStop would charge me about $20 each (if I could find them).

            I just bought the whole title library on Steam for $12.50, going from GTA all the way through GTA:V with the DLC. Not like GTA and GTA2 are all that great anymore, but whatever.

            Twelve bucks. Try to find all those titles in a secondhand rack and still get change back from a twenty.

            With deals like that, who cares about second-hand?

        • Unplug or disable your internet connection and Steam will automatically start in offline mode. You will be able to close and restart in offline mode until you choose to enable online mode.

        • Not true, on this laptop I can access my steam account offline because I’m not plugged into a cable, in fact I can play my steam games while online on one computer and offline on this laptop.

  9. I have a gtx 460 768mb which is above recommended, but only a dual core [email protected] 3.1ghz, and 3gb DDR2 ram (should be 4gb but im on 32 bit xp)Do you guys think it will still be ok despite the slight bottleneck?

  10. Still haven’t managed to get any good advice on whether I should get it on my (quite old) rig or my xbox.
    My PC specs are:

    Dell 9150 Pentium® D CPU 2.8GHz

    Windows XP SP3

    Radeon HD5670 (1GB)

    3 GB RAM

    2 Hard Drives with a total of about 390 GB free.

    So would it be worth my while?

  11. i just hope its not like rage where you cant put everything in ultra or in BF3 where the game is in 10 and 10 minutes exit but its elder scrolls and i never had problems with TES GAMES.

  12. Will Skyrim use DX11 to make it look even more better in a future patch? I would wish for it in a future patch for those like me who got the juice to run it in DX11!

  13. I can agree with that, using steam is wrong, Skyrim is a product and not a service, thats just Bethesda being lazy with publishing to cut costs. Why can’t we just use the good old days like Morrowind and a CD Key? Priates will always exist but so will more people who buy the game, particularly if they don’t require live online subscription programs.

    If Steam does go down for not making a profit since its in effect in competition with Microsoft X360, PSN store’s etc, then we will lose our games it Steam goes down which will suck as I doubt game companies will remburse us x years down the line.

    One thing I want to know, the only reason I’m buying PC version is for the modding, how will this work with Steam? I hope Bethesda don’t ruin the experience that modders had with previous series.

    • Steam works fine with modding, or at least I haven’t had problems in FO3, FNV, Borderlands, or Half-Life. Same mods as everyone else uses.

      Also, Steam isn’t going out of business, and if they did someone else would purchase all their IP rights and keep the site up. You might as well worry about Amazon going under.

      Lastly.. the days of CD keys? Sure, bring back scratched discs and manually downloaded updates while you’re at it. I like Steam, because I don’t have to keep track of all that stuff anymore. CD keys never stopped piracy, anyhow.

      It sounds like you might have some trust issues with content delivery, but I can’t help you with that.

  14. would this work? and on which setting? im not good at comparing specs lol

    windows 7
    processor-AMD Athlon(tm) 64 X2 Dual Core Processor 6000+ (2 CPUs), ~3.0GHz
    5120MB Ram
    Direct X 11
    graphics card: NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GTS……Total memory 2914 MB

  15. I remember playing Oblivion on a single-core-crappy system with only 1.9 GHz and a 128 Mb AGP card, fast forward to 2K11, and all I can say is, that it’s a great feeling as a gamer, to not even consider looking at system requirements for at least 3 years from now!

    Amd Phenom II 1055 x6 2.8 GHz, 14gb Kingston, ATI 6950 2gb!

    My rig was MADE for this game!

  16. YEY!!! cant wait for this, i will be playing on full

    Windows 7 64 bit
    Processor: Quad Core 4.60GHz
    8GB System RAM DDR3
    Geforce GTX 560Ti

  17. Holy crap. My 4 year old Dell XPS is within the recommended specs aside from having 1GB less RAM. You guys sure know how to optimise a game!

  18. Lee you will be fine on medium settings with some things set to low. . which is fine because medium and up the detail settings aren’t a huge difference. Skyrim is optimized for 2 cores but runs faster on sandy bridge anyway.

  19. Is there a way to not use Steam on PC version. That company has already lost/stolen 200$ worth of my licenses.

    Also, don’t be weak of spine if your software is worth having you shouldn’t have to delete posts like this. Have some integrity as a company and respond to potential customer concerns instead.

  20. I’m having a problem, its it strange that I have 6 GB RAM,dual core i7, 540M GPU (laptop meh) and I have to play at lowest settings for no lag and the game auto placed my stuff at medium settings?

  21. i have a radeon hd 4850 1gb card. is that enough? i’m sure it can handle medium settings, but what about high? maybe a little lag here and there?

  22. Not really good with specs so hoping you could help 🙂

    I have:
    Windows XP 32 bit
    Intel Core 2 Quad CPU 2.40GHz
    3GB RAM
    Nvidia GeForce GTX 260 (approx. 896MB)

    Will these specs run smoothly on a reasonably high setting?
    Would appreciate the help soon! 🙂

  23. Can you run below these settIngs? On really low setting or something
    I have shit Pc and it needs major updates .so could it run on an old amd Athlon 1.8ghz processor of not what would be reccomended in price range of $0-$150

    • i have a pretty old pc too, a compaq bought about 5 yrs ago. my graphics card is a GeForce 6150 (nForce 430) and it cannot handle skyrim at all. i have 4gb of system ram etc but really its the video card thats essential. getting a GTX 550 Ti today, hoping it will work 🙂

  24. i have

    AMD x4 956 3.42ghz, 4gb ram and an ATI 5830

    i should be able to run the game well? but it runs 18 fps in the open world when not alone.


  25. Everything else i have is above the requirements but i have a crappy Intel(R) HD Graphics Family video card will i be able to run it

  26. Hi i am wondering what settings i will be able to run the game at, if able to run it at all. i have.

    phenom 2 555 dual unlocked to a phenom b55 quad,
    8gb of ram,
    win 7 ultimate
    his hd 5830 1gb


  27. I just purchased a HP Pavilion dv7 i7-2670QM, 8GB RAM, the video is a Radeon HD 6770M with 1 GB of memory and the game still runs jittery with the video settings all set at the lowest possible. Am I missing something obvious?

  28. Most of you on here that are gamer’s Should know What is required out of your system and a game your trying to play. the requirements are wrote in black and white and they are clear cut. for min and recommended. so if it say’s it needs 2 gb of ram to run then that’s what it needs and if you have less than what the min is then it will not.Also for all of you asking about gpu’s It clearly states that it will run with a 512mb direct x 9.0c gpu.Now with that said that doesn’t mean that every card will run with the game. So you’ll need to look up a list of compliant gpu’s that will work with the game.Now my system spcs are as follows. Athlon 64 x2 6000+ 3.0 duel core cpu. 1gb X 4 800mhz of memory, 9600 gt 512mb clock core 700mhz, windows 7 64 bit ult. Now with my specs for everyone to read, the elder scrolls v Will run but it will not run properly and you will not get the full game expirance that you would if the setting were on high or ultra.And if any of you have ever played gta 4 you will know what I mean, with out the recomened requremnts you will not be able to enjoy the game as it was intended. Also most games will not install or if they do will not load if the minim requrments are not met.And sorry guys I’m kinda a bad speller.

  29. Operating System: Windows (Service Pack 1)
    CPU Type: Intel® Core™2 Duo CPU P8700 @ 2.53GHz
    CPU Speed: 2.55 GHz
    System Memory: 6 GB
    Video Card Model: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 260M
    Video Card Memory: 3.73 GB
    Video Card Driver: nvd3dum.dll
    Desktop Resolution: 1440×900
    Hard Disk Size: 232.88 GB

    is this sufficient?

  30. Would my current PC be able to run Skyrim at Ultra settings?

    Windows 7 64-bit
    i7-870 CPU
    GeForce GTX 560 Ti
    16 GB DDR3 RAM

    Thanks for your time.

  31. I just started playing Skyrim, and something might be wrong. I have a GTX580M graphics card, 8gb ram, and 2 Intel i7 quad core processors. It makes me play on medium or low. I don’t know why it does this, if the recommended is GTX260. Can someone help? P.S., I updated my graphics card yesterday.

  32. So… if this game is that well optimized, would I run it with this PC?

    Nvidia 9600M graphics card (512 MB)
    4GB RAM
    Intel Core dos Duo 3.0 GHz