I have added an Elder Scrolls Series page and Skyrim child page to the References section featuring the items you should be saving while you play the game that are not all that obvious. Basically, a number of the NPCs give you a small quest to collect some alchemy ingredients or collect some miscellaneous items for them. These items are not always easy to find.
One such example is the 10 Fire Salts. When I first got this quest, I had already explored most of the game world. It was towards the end of that character’s playthrough. Fire Salts are fairly rare in Skyrim. There are a few guaranteed spots to get them if you have memorized those areas of the game or cheated and looked it up in a guide. Otherwise, you have to get them from Flame Atronachs. That enemy type doesn’t spawn if your character’s level gets high enough. The only way to encounter them is if a Conjurer enemy happens to summon one. At my character’s high level, they almost always summon Frost Atronachs instead.
In addition to the quest items list, I also added a list for Hearthfire items. Many of the items needed to furnish your house are uncommon. Things like amulets for the Nine Divines are random drops while Slaughterfish Scales suffer the same problem as Fire Salts. Slaughterfish don’t spawn much when your character is high level.
As a side note, I will not be making Skyrim builds. I feel one of Skyrim’s greatest strengths is giving the player the freedom to build their character however they want. There are no real bad decisions when it comes to choosing skills. Even if you think you chose a bad set of initial skills to work on, you can always spend more time leveling up other skills to make up for it.