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In Skyrim do you have to forge all of the higher up armors like Daedric and Ebony or can you find them on random enemies like in Oblivion. I'm also level 17 if that helps answer the question.
well I'm level 29 and I am still seeing orcish and eleven, it's probably at higher levels now, I think the only armor and weaposn you must smith is Dragon
the higher you get on level you will find in chests around i started finding ebony armor and weapons like level 38 and then i started finding deadric Armour and weapons like at level 45 but you cant find dragon but i found them in chests not on people hope this helps the numbers vary depends who you are
hope this helps
What you can do is do the Smithing Leveling, where you just keep making Iron Daggers hours on end. A few hours later and your Smithing should be maxed out.
If you're playing on the PC, and don't want to do all that and just want the armor right now, just use console commands.
I'm level 40 and sometimes a vendor will have some ebony armor for me but the deadric armor is probablu really hard to find even if you are a really high level. I would recomend just leveling up i smithing by making iron dagers it takes about 1h and a half to 2h and costs somwhere around 12 000$ but it's worth it because not only can you make the armor you want but you can also upgrade it to legendary wich is greatly improves the effectiveness of the armor I would also recommend just making the deadric stuff because the ebony armor takes up ebony ingots (which are used in deadric armor) and also when you're choosing your perks for smithing choose the heavy armor ones (on the right side of the constellation thing) and dont select the dragon armor cause its not as good as deadric and is a waste of a perk
Note: I've found ONE pair of Dragonscale Gauntlets with an enchantment of 40% more two handed damage. Never found any other Dragonscale or Dragonbone other than that. So no you don't need to have Smithing at all but it helps and allows you to buff your weapons and armor.
You can find all the armors without having to build it yourself BUT, Daedric and dragon armor (be it dragonbone or dragonscale) are incredibly rare and you will only (probably) find it in chests.
I have found a few pieces of the mentioned in chests, but no enemy that was wearing it.
Like some have already said, building it yourself is the best choice if you really want the full set.
You never have to pick up a hammer to forge. Like To Drown mentioned, you can pick up some of these items in chests. The ebony armor components are much easier to come by than the daedric and dragon.
I've found several dragonscale gauntlets in various chests and on corpses. To increase your chances, level up the perks under the lockpicking skill set (Treasure Hunter).
If you don't want to spend your time looting your way to a full set, it'd be much faster to level up in Smithing. Someone mentioned making iron daggers, but that would take forever. Keep in mind the better quality item you make, the faster you gain experience. Using potions/spells to increase smithing skills will allow you to increase even more quickly.
You can find ebony (well I have and I'm level 49), I haven't found Daedric (killed Daedra but couldn't loot the armor), so I made it myself. In my option it's easy enough to get your smithing up anyway.
A zombie ate my signature.
Nope. Ebony will RARELY appear on enemies, and Daedric will never appear on anyone except Dremora, and if they're killed, you won't be able to retrieve it.
However, good armor pieces will be occasionally found at past level 30.
Me? I'm level 57 or something. So I find good *** in every chest. Not that I need it, since I have the best armor and weapons a smithy can make.
you can find ebony armor in chests in old ruins, ebony weapons on droughr kings, but you have to level up on smithing and get materials (daedra hearts) to make daedric armor in a forge, an old rumor says if you forge stuff in the eagle forge the resistence from attacks is much higher.
PS/ IM level 64 assassin mage