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Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

Post by Blackhawk »

Smoove_B wrote:
Tue Feb 27, 2018 12:52 pm
I think there's real potential to get obsessed with tweaking things and not actually playing the game. Not naming names here... :D
Here, I'll help: Blackhawk. The thing that people that don't mod don't get about the way some of us do it is that the modding itself is an entertaining project. It's a creative endeavor, sort of like a model kit where you get to choose what each piece looks like. I have a blast choosing and adjusting the base game into exactly the kind of experience that I most enjoy. Skyrim can be a light action game, a deep RPG, a hardcore survival game, an exploration game, or The Sims depending on how you set it up. You can make it silly and absurd, or dark and gritty. You can tweak it to be an updated Thief-lite or a focused wizard game. My current set up is as an exploration/adventure RPG with a somewhat higher difficulty than vanilla (although not anywhere close to a Souls type experience), and a greatly slowed down rate of advancement to offset the extra time spent exploring.

The caveat is that you have to know what you want and go in with, for lack of a better term, a vision. If you go in with no idea of what kind of game you want and just throw stuff at it at random, you'll end up with a mess, then have to change mods, then try again, then change mods, then try again. You'll end up burned out or, more likely, with a broken game.

Anyway, the silly mods and quasi-porn mods are a rarity. At the very least I'd look at some of the leveling and balance mods. The vanilla skills are really unbalanced. Many are useless, and others are god mode powerful.
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

Post by tjg_marantz »

Fair enough. Visuals for sure and I'll skim through the balance ones. Are there two or three balance mods you would recommend? Nothing that'll change the game completely but like you say, fine tune skills etc.

Thanks!
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

Post by Blackhawk »

I personally use Ordinator, but I've not tried the SE version. It's a huge improvement, but it's an overhaul rather than a tweak, though. Read it and watch the videos on the page.
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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As you can see my load list Im using 1 house mod, 4 companions mods, and I think all the rest are to improve graphics one way or another. You can see some of my pics high up in the postings. I may need to add a difficulty mod later as it seems really easy with 4 companions (Only at 3 right now) and I want it to be tougher and Im not using any game altering mods yet.
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

Post by TheMix »

A balance mod of some kind is always my first priority. I love Bethesda games, but they always seem to turn too quickly into challenge-less slaughter fests. I think they just assume that everyone will race through the main quests and do very few side quests; so the content will stay difficult. But I like doing side quests, so I always out pace the game leveling, which can lead to boring, unexciting gaming.
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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TheMix wrote:
Tue Feb 27, 2018 1:26 pm
A balance mod of some kind is always my first priority. I love Bethesda games, but they always seem to turn too quickly into challenge-less slaughter fests. I think they just assume that everyone will race through the main quests and do very few side quests; so the content will stay difficult. But I like doing side quests, so I always out pace the game leveling, which can lead to boring, unexciting gaming.
That's my feeling, petty much word for word. Bethesda games are so, so easy to break if you don't play the way they assume you will.
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

Post by Madmarcus »

Blackhawk wrote:
Tue Feb 27, 2018 1:21 pm
I personally use Ordinator, but I've not tried the SE version. It's a huge improvement, but it's an overhaul rather than a tweak, though. Read it and watch the videos on the page.
Vanilla Skyrim was good enough for a solid playthrough focusing on the main quest and one of the major side quest chains. At that point I had my money's worth out of the game but I'd also become frustrated at the level scaling and the bland perks. I liked Skyrim as an exploration based RPG. I wanted a sense that I had many possible builds to chose from and many possible directions to go when playing the game. Starting a second character in vanilla just didn't really scratch that itch. When I came back to Skyrim SE I picked certain mods to fit my playstyle. Ordinator, Imperious, Aurora, and Apocylpse (all by the same author) worked perfectly to make different skills viable. At this point I would suggest them even if you haven't played Skyrim before.

The rest of the mods I have fall into three categories. Visual mods are a very personal issue. I think Skyrim looks ok without them but I did follow a random article that listed a somewhat quick and dirty list of mods to make Skyrim SE look good. Unless you really plan to play Skyrim a ton I wouldn't go down the ENB and weather mod rabbit holes and I might not worry at all about texture mods.

Next are the new quests, player houses, companions, and areas. I love them! But, as with FO3 I've played this game to death. I'd play without these until you've played around with the vanilla content

Finally there are the utility mods that change the game. Mostly this is Ars Metallica, MorrowLoot Ultimate, and a few other crafting mods. To me Morrowloot was a godsend. I wouldn't play without it - the world doesn't level with you and high end weapons and armor are not found on every common thug by level 20. Combine that with some crafting mods and I'm happy. As with Ordinator, I don't think I could go back to vanilla.

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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

Post by Blackhawk »

Morrowloot was fantastic. I'd generally agree with everything you said, although I'd probably still suggest a house mod or at least something that filled out the Hearthfire home a little, like a nice storage basement.
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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Madmarcus wrote:
Tue Feb 27, 2018 4:03 pm
I did follow a random article that listed a somewhat quick and dirty list of mods to make Skyrim SE look good.
Link?

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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

Post by Madmarcus »

Unfortunately I set up Skyrim SE last year and have no idea which mod list I followed. When I started playing again this year I just updated the mods and added some new ones. Since I still can't find a button to export a mod list in NMM I'll type up the major ones tonight and add some comments.

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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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Blackhawk wrote:
Tue Feb 27, 2018 1:21 pm
I personally use Ordinator, but I've not tried the SE version. It's a huge improvement, but it's an overhaul rather than a tweak, though. Read it and watch the videos on the page.
That is my go to as well. That plus Deadly combat mod and now you have a much better progression path and a deeper, more challenging combat experience.

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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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Madmarcus wrote:
Wed Feb 28, 2018 1:21 pm
Unfortunately I set up Skyrim SE last year and have no idea which mod list I followed. When I started playing again this year I just updated the mods and added some new ones. Since I still can't find a button to export a mod list in NMM I'll type up the major ones tonight and add some comments.
I don't use Nexus Mod Manager anymore (Mod Organizer is a lot better), but a quick search suggests that there is an option to export load order, which you then copy to clipboard. It is a list of .esp/.esm files rather than actual mods, so it isn't perfect, but it is something.
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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Assuming this works, pulled from Mod Organizer, my current non-SE mod list.

Google Docs link.
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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How come mod organizer is better?

Mod manager is about as easy as it gets but it's only my first go round
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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tjg_marantz wrote:
Wed Feb 28, 2018 5:26 pm
How come mod organizer is better?

Mod manager is about as easy as it gets but it's only my first go round
Keep in mind that I'm discussing regular Skyrim here, not the SE.

Mod Organizer isn't quite as a easy as NMM, so the learning curve is quite a bit steeper.

On the other hand, it has a lot more features that are really useful, especially if you're adding more than a few mods. One big deal is that it doesn't alter your Skyrim install at all. It keeps the directory more or less vanilla by using virtual directories. Think of it as running Skyrim and the mods together in a sandbox - all of your custom files are kept separate from the actual install. It makes it easier to undo problems, bad file edits, etc. It makes it especially easy to experiment with a mod and then remove it, as nothing is actually altered.

It also makes it possible to have multiple mod setups for a single Skyrim install (so you could have one set of mods for a mage character, one for a thief character, and one for a super-difficult playthrough, all without them interfering with each other.)

Another benefit is that it only really 'installs' the mods when you launch the game. NMM installs them as you set them up. This won't make much sense without some experience with mods and Bethesda games, but most mods you install add files to the game directory. If you install two or more mods that alter the same file, they'll conflict, and you have to choose whether to override the previous one you installed. Doing so is permanent so you can't really change your mind. As an added issue, if you uninstall the later mod, the mod with the overwritten file can end up missing files. With MO, though, since the files are only placed as you launch the game, you can undo those changes or change the priority of the files at any time (IE - change which files overwrite which files.)

It runs all of the utilities directly through the manager itself, including stuff like Wrye, BOSS, and SKSE.

It has a number of other, more advanced features that make keeping your mods running smoothly much, much easier.

Now, remember - that was all for regular Skyrim. For the SE (which I don't own), it changes. The MO team was hired by Nexus to revamp NMM going forward, which will likely result in a more complex NMM and MO becoming obsolete. I'm not sure how far that has progressed at this point.
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

Post by tjg_marantz »

Thanks for the breakdown
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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I use NMM because it work for me and has been working for years. If I was starting from scratch I'd listen to Blackhawk and use MO.

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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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Ive used both mod managers and both have good features but I use NMM because its easy.
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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Smoove_B wrote:
Tue Feb 27, 2018 12:52 pm
I'm probably the worst person to ask, but I'm not a fan of mods. I'd recommend playing the game as a completely vanilla install and then either modifying something that's bothering you ("Why can't I carry 10,000lbs of gear in my backpack??!) or replaying the game with modified conditions based on your experiences. I think there's real potential to get obsessed with tweaking things and not actually playing the game. Not naming names here... :D
I also tend to avoid most mods with some exceptions, like graphics and bug fixes. I consider myself a relative purist and like to see games as they were made. I think the heaviest I ever modded a game was Fallout 4, but that's because settlement construction really needed help and is pretty lame in the vanilla mode.
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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Paingod wrote:
Thu Mar 01, 2018 3:22 pm

I also tend to avoid most mods
I don't

I never did find the easy to see button on the right side that Youtube says should be on my copy of NMM so I just typed an annotated list. This list has been under construction since I received the Special Edition so, as with any edifice built over time, it might be a little bit rickety. No crashes though.

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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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I finally broke down and picked up Skyrim for my Switch. The portability is just awesome, but it's definitely got it's issues. Chief among them, there is no gamma slider and dark areas become nearly impossible to see on the handheld. It's not as bad on the big screen, but dark caves or nighttime stuff is basically a no-go when portable.

So I hit the wrong button and accidentally shouted a guard in Whiterun (I meant to sprint). Now every damn guard in a 5 mile radius is out for my head. Does the hostility go away after some time has passed, or do I have to load an old save?
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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Skinypupy wrote:I finally broke down and picked up Skyrim for my Switch. The portability is just awesome, but it's definitely got it's issues. Chief among them, there is no gamma slider and dark areas become nearly impossible to see on the handheld. It's not as bad on the big screen, but dark caves or nighttime stuff is basically a no-go when portable.

So I hit the wrong button and accidentally shouted a guard in Whiterun (I meant to sprint). Now every damn guard in a 5 mile radius is out for my head. Does the hostility go away after some time has passed, or do I have to load an old save?
I did the same thing... I just kept running. Hopefully they'll have cooled off when I get back there.
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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https://www.reddit.com/r/NintendoSwitch ... h=a3aa68d8

Theres some suggestion in that thread about the darkness of the game. Saw MANY links about it.
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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Skinypupy wrote:
Fri Mar 09, 2018 7:44 pm
I finally broke down and picked up Skyrim for my Switch. The portability is just awesome, but it's definitely got it's issues. Chief among them, there is no gamma slider and dark areas become nearly impossible to see on the handheld. It's not as bad on the big screen, but dark caves or nighttime stuff is basically a no-go when portable.

So I hit the wrong button and accidentally shouted a guard in Whiterun (I meant to sprint). Now every damn guard in a 5 mile radius is out for my head. Does the hostility go away after some time has passed, or do I have to load an old save?
Run away for a bit. Then have your weapon out when you approach a guard that starts to attack you, then put the weapon away while he is fighting you. He should stop fighting you and try to arrest you instead. That usually works if it doesn't then you might have to load an old save.

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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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Tried that, didn’t work. They still kept whaling on me. Guess I’ll try reloading.

I went with a 2-handed weapon, but don’t think I like it. It’s too slow, and the extra offense doesn’t seem to make up for the lack of defense. I’m getting my ass kicked on the regular, but am still in the early game. Maybe it gets better.
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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Turns out the Skyrim Very Special Edition on Alexa is real. its like the old Zork text adventures.

https://www.digitaltrends.com/home/how- ... xa-device/
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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Daehawk wrote:
Wed Jun 13, 2018 6:25 am
Turns out the Skyrim Very Special Edition on Alexa is real. its like the old Zork text adventures.

https://www.digitaltrends.com/home/how- ... xa-device/
I may have just shouted FUS RO DAH at a shelf in my living room in order to kill a Frostbite Spider.

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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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Okay, so I'm flitting from space game to space game to space game and find that none of them are gripping me, but I want adventure, crafting, combat, and exploration. I'm sifting through all my options and stumble over Skyrim. I'm uncertain, I mean - it's not a space game, and I think that's what I want to play. Holy crap, I'm snagged. I haven't touched it in 4 years (according to the save date), and it's like an old friend.
Madmarcus wrote:
Sun Mar 04, 2018 11:25 am
Paingod wrote:
Thu Mar 01, 2018 3:22 pm

I also tend to avoid most mods
I don't

I never did find the easy to see button on the right side that Youtube says should be on my copy of NMM so I just typed an annotated list. This list has been under construction since I received the Special Edition so, as with any edifice built over time, it might be a little bit rickety. No crashes though.
I've got the original with all DLC and the 'Free' SE version that came out. I couldn't figure out why I'd want to play the SE version. Mostly, I don't want to lose the home I made for myself. So I have a couple questions.

I'm only a few hours into my new campaign and am wondering if SE is right for me. It's not too late to go back and start over without feeling like a lot of time was lost.
  • I was looking through the changes in SE, and it seems like it's pretty much just visuals - which never bothered me as I had already added mods to make a lot of things look better. Aside from visuals, is there a compelling reason to go SE?
  • Is it possible to convert a non-SE house mod to a SE-compatible house mod - or is it already compatible? I made a mod for myself and want to be able to keep using it.
  • I was looking through your -long- list of mods and like a lot of the changes. I'm considering following suit as you seem to work to improve the overall experience without simplifying it. I like that. Is modding SE about as cumbersome as modding the old Skyrim? You mentioned using NMM over other (more modern?) tools. I was wondering why.
*Edit: Okay, so after looking around I figured I'd make a project out of Skyrim SE and get into it as a new version of Skyrim and be less worried about my little warehouse mod. I'm currently working through the awesome list Madmarcus posted above and acquiring it as a base. Some of the mods listed have changed a little, and one was gone - but didn't seem a great loss.

I really look forward to the Apocalypse mod's Alteration Expert spell Deep Storage to have access to an infinite, portable chest and from there satisfy my hoarding urges completely ... no more running out of dungeons because I can't fit anymore kettles in my inventory ... :dance:

*Edit Pt 2: I've sorted through and downloaded 60 mods for SE, almost exclusively from your list, Madmarcus. I skipped a lot of the smaller or questionably necessary enhancements - like beards, eyes, nudity, and location improvements - until I feel like I might want them. I kept most of the balance, equipment, spells, visuals, and others.
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

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I've gotten all the mods in and tested it out, but either the SkyUI or Map mod are causing problems on the map. I get a SkyUI error on there. It looks okay, but I'm getting an error. I uninstalled the map and re-installed SkyUI, but it's still causing issues. Not a huge problem, but annoying on an otherwise error-free 60-mod install.

I should have played SE for a little while with no enhancements in there so I had a comparison. Other than the Total Body mod, I'm not noticing any real changes with upgraded meshes and textures, though my water looks good and has nice reflections. The Total Body mod scrubs out the gross filth smears/shadows covering so many faces - but leaves everyone looking kind of washed out. An overall improvement, so it'll stay.

The Alternate Start Live Another Life mod has a LOT of options... and can be really hard thanks to Cold/Wet/Combat AI/Leveled areas. My first start, I was "Left for Dead" - and woke up on a tiny frost-bitten island wearing nothing bug rags. No towns in sight. I swam to shore, went North, and was mauled by wolves. Restart. I swam to shore and went South and was murdered by little blue Goblins. Restart. I swam to shore and was murdered by wolves again. Roll all the way back to character select... I tried a Bandit start, and it was pretty cool to be on good terms with a small group of Bandits, but everything in the woods hated me - and so did town guards everywhere I went. I eventually gave myself up, served my time, cleared my name, and now Bandits hate me and I'm kind of right back where I was when the original game starts. I could have gone on a challenge run as a Bandit, but wanted to be able to sell off goods and don't even know if Bandits get a retail outlet anytime before a Thieves Guild. I even got to the dragon-sieged town and started the quest there to warn the towns. It was kind of cool to show up after everything happened and wander around saying "Hey, I know what happened here ... and here... and here. I know why you're dead. I know why that wall collapsed!"

Enemy casters are much harder with the Apocalypse and Ward mods, and melee enemies are harder with the Wildcat mod. I like the huge variety of armors and weapons available thanks to the diversity mods, and it's made it easy for me to give up hoarding - with no home and limited inventory, I sell off everything I don't immediately want to keep. I actually feel like a wandering adventurer now instead of a flea market shopper. Thankfully, there are quick skills for increased carry capacity and backpacks introduced by one of the mods between Camping and Ordinator.

The Frostfall mod works well with Wet & Cold, and my character doesn't do well at all in freezing temperatures. I can only wander around for a brief time out in a blizzard before I start getting warnings about frostbite. Food/Water/Sleep needs are interesting and workable. I don't mind lugging around a small stockpile of food and a couple waterskins. I haven't tried collecting rain in a bucket and prefer to just pay a small fee at an Inn to refill my water. I haven't tried camping yet - I don't have the equipment, but should make some. I need to at least figure out how to make a small fire so I can warm up and dry off. Plus side, I have a use for chopping firewood. My only complaint here is that I need to put on items to see what their water & cold resistance stats are. I'd love to be able to see them in the UI so I can make informed decisions. *Edit: A little research seems to indicate that I need to fiddle with SkyUI and maybe re-install Frostfall to interact with it, and then I'll see these values.

I might uninstall the Simply Bigger Trees mod. I really like the way they look - and it makes the countryside seem ancient and untamed... but it also obscures most vision near trees and I find myself easily ambushed by things I just don't see coming - or I lose track of someone I'm supposed to be following. It could just take some getting used to.

I'm not sure how I feel about the huge expanded skill tree in Ordinator. I love that it rewards diversity - but it's got ~400 skill points to allocate, and I only get 1 each level. I like having a character that can perform multiple things - especially at higher levels when I've mastered the Bow/Stealth game and want to branch out into spellcasting to supplement it and shake things up. Ordinator seems to encourage really digging into a skill tree and spending a lot of time in it.

My character is a Bosmer (Wood Elf) - but a rugged rogue, not a sharp-chinned wisp. I'm trying to go the route of Thief - Bows/Lockpick/Sneak/Pickpocket - but it needs a lot of practice to get useful. I keep falling back on Restoration/2H Weapons to save my skin. I've only just reached Whiterun and am working through the quests there before continuing. Exploration last night yielded me coming up behind two giants with me perched up on a safe spot in the mountains, and I was able to kill both from stealth with ~80 arrows. A coup in terms of quick loot, but a loss in terms of ammo.

*Edit: Actually, you know what... the Archer/Thief has been my go-to for the last 3 Elder Scrolls games. I think with the changes to spells, I want to try on a Spellcaster. It's been a really long time since I used one as anything other than pet summons to keep enemies distracted.
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

Post by Paingod »

Solved the SkyUI map error problem by telling SkyUI in the Mod Control Manager (MCM, System Menu) to ignore the map since I was using a map and marker overhaul. Voila, no more errors. Skyrim SE now runs smoothly and error-free with 63 mods. I did have a single instance last night where the game locked up on leaving a dungeon, but that's not abnormal for a Bethesda title.

After some brief deliberation, I've decided to stick with the thief archetype. I suppose the reason I go this way is mostly because I find sneaking around more interesting than charging in headfirst or using spells in this game. Melee combat and spellcasting are supplemental to the way I enjoy the game.

I spent some time really looking at the skill trees in Ordinator last night and think I've figured out the intent. You can get some good general use out of a skill with a handful of points early in the tree to strengthen it. However, if you really want to play heavily on the skill, you can deeply invest in it. I keep playing generalist characters - in older Elder Scrolls games, I would have picked Sneak/Bow/Lockpick as my main skills with Light Armor/Speech/Restoration as my secondary skills. I'm still approaching the game from that mindset.

What I need to do is just start building the trees in Sneak and Lockpick to see what I can do. Between them they make a trap specialist - tripwires, bear traps, and other things to aid escape and survival. A very sneaky character that plans ahead more than just finding the furthest point to fire arrows from. Even with just a few points in Sneak and a skill of 38, I'm able to somewhat reliably get up behind things to backstab them - and instead I could be setting traps behind them, too.

I'm still struggling to adapt to the life of a homeless adventurer. It makes my fingers itch to collect loot and sell it without keeping at least one copy for myself. I still lug around a lot of crap, though. Before weather, rest, camping, food, and drink were important I could maybe trim my inventory down to 45 units after selling and unloading. Now with no home, I have to carry all my crafting and alchemy stuff - along with a backpacks, gear, food, water, firewood, a (stolen) tent, wood axe, pick axe - and I weigh in around 185+ when I leave a shop. My capacity (with bags) is ~500.

The enhanced bandits in OBIS are interesting and add a nice flavor to the game. I really get the feeling that they're more of a faction unto themselves now and have even run into a bandit stronghold. I like the combat changes in Wildcat, too. Enemies have more interesting attacks, and timing counts. One of the bandits, the leader I presume, was a Berserker that healed back to full when I got her below half - and when she did, she proceeded to rip me apart and finished me with a brutal triple knee-to-head smash that would destroy a professional MMA fighter. While I was able to cut some of the bandits in half with a stealth arrow and then melee them down hand to hand, I really had to exploit stealth and sneak archery attacks to kill her.

One strange thing I came across was a Stormcloak vs. Imperial skirmish at a farm. The farmer was running for his life down the road when I arrived, and the brawl was a mess. The Stormcloaks came out on top, though. Picking through the refuse like a vulture, I felt like I was taking advantage of a bad situation without helping. I haven't taken a side yet. Heck, I haven't even warned the Jarl that a dragon is on the way to find him.

I had completely forgotten what a rabbit-hole questing is in this game. NPC A asks me to get a XYZ. On my way to get XYZ, I bump into NPC B, who needs help with DEF. XYZ can wait, so I head to DEF - but while I'm there, I find a book that tells me I can find something interesting at PQR... and it goes on and on.
Last edited by Paingod on Wed Aug 08, 2018 7:44 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

Post by Daehawk »

I had mine all modded up with 80+ mods and was good to go. I was just waiting to start it. Would have been my 3rd real go at it and 5th overall. Then A viri forced me to format. All gone. Too disheartened to bother again. I did love the game world when I played.
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Tampa_Gamer
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

Post by Tampa_Gamer »

Paingod, I too have been bouncing between games waiting for the next big 7DTD patch this month and also playing Empyrion, Endless Space 2, Master of Orion (remake), Avorion, Conan, etc. looking to scratch an itch or more likely just suffering from GADD (game attention deficit disorder). I was going to wait until late fall/winter and spring for Skyrim VR for my next play through, but you have peaked my interest. Would you mind showing us your final mod list?

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Paingod
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

Post by Paingod »

Tampa_Gamer wrote:
Wed Aug 08, 2018 8:07 am
Would you mind showing us your final mod list?
Not at all. My list is like 98% comprised of Madmarcus' list (above) but I'll run through and link each one. Bear in mind that Skyrim VR - from what I've heard - doesn't work well with (some?) mods, and not all modders are interested in trying to work with Skyrim VR. This list may not apply and was made for Skyrim SE.

The below mods are listed in the order I can recall them and find them - NOT their load order. First, I used the NMM (Nexus Mod Manager) to install all the mods I downloaded, then I used LOOT to help establish a good mod load order after cleaning up some missing add-ons, and strongly recommend using it. Some mods were touched up with add-ons after LOOT identified missing pieces, but I can't recall which right now. LOOT will tell you. :D
Spoiler:
  • SKSE 64 - Skyrim Script Extender, an essential tool for a number of mods. Run Skyrim with this .exe to load it for mods to use it.
  • LOOT - Load Order Optimization Tool - Essential tool for checking for mod conflicts or missing parts. It will warn you if you need an add-on to fix something, and generate a good, working mod load order.
  • Unofficial Skyrim SE Patch - Bug and content fixes. It's Bethesda. It's mostly up to the players to finish their games.
  • Cutting Room Floor - Brings back and polishes/finishes some content Bethesda left in but unfinished.
  • Cutting Room Floor - No Snow Under Roofs - Just a little visual cleanup for some of the content above.
  • Better Dialog Controls - Improved dialog clicking and controls.
  • Better MessageBox Controls - Improved Message Box controls (larger clickable areas)
  • Ordinator - Perks of Skyrim - Complete overhaul and rebalance of all skill trees, providing a lot of new gameplay options. May want to add the optional increases to Perk points as there are now 400+ skills to use instead of ~100.
  • Imperious - Races of Skyrim - Makes each race a little more unique, with bonus abilities and rewards.
  • Apocalypse - Magic of Skyrim - Overhaul of magic. Vanilla spells are still around, but this adds a lot of new effects and specialties for each branch of magic, making them each uniquely useful.
  • Summermyst - Enchantments of Skyrim - Overhaul of the Enchantment system so it's not so easily exploitable and is more diverse/interesting.
  • Witchhunter Spells and Prayers - Adds spells and abilities to use "verbally" for characters that want to use 2H weapons or Sword/Shield.
  • Wards Act Like Shields - Make spellcasters more dangerous by giving them defensive combat abilities.
  • Morrowloot Ultimate - Rebalance level scaling of areas and loot, meaning bandits won't wander around with glass items and you can wander into places you do NOT belong yet.
  • Alternate Start - Live Another Life - Choose a new start - a beggar, a thief, left for dead, an outcast, a prisoner, a thrall (and many more) - or the standard one. Changes the initial quest line so it doesn't start until you visit the town where it all begins.
  • VioLens - A Killcam Mod - More killcam moves for you and enemies.
  • Wildcat - Combat of Skyrim - More robust hand to hand combat.
  • Skyrim Revamped - Complete Enemy Overhaul - Alters enemy AI to try and diversify them more.
  • Skyrim Alchemy Fixed - Rebalances Alchemy so it's not easily exploitable, making the game a little more challenging.
  • Ars Metallica - Smithing Enhancement - Makes Smithing more generally useful to all characters.
  • iNeed - Food Water Sleep - Adds physical needs to diversify your game and increase immersion. A reason to carry food and water, and a need to rest periodically.
  • Food Overhaul - Working with iNeed, it also diversifies foods and cuts back on exploiting food for easy healing.
  • Campfire - A complete base mod that other mods can build on, it adds a camping and survival system to the game. Jives well with iNeed (above), Frostfall (below), and Wet & Cold (below).
  • Frostfall - Thermal survival. Skyrim is a freezing cold place, and your character now knows it. Use clothing, fire, and shelter to stay warm.
  • Wet and Cold - Adds to Thermal survival by making your exposure to liquids matter, too. Frigid waters can be lethal, beware shipwreck diving.
  • Immersive Armors - Adds diversity to the armor collections at each stage, increasing the number of different items you can find or use and making characters appear more diverse.
  • Skyrim SE Expanded Skyrim Weaponry - Like Immersive Armors, it adds a lot of balanaced variants to weapons to keep things feeling more immersive. Not just Iron Sword, Iron Sword, Iron Sword.
  • Zim's Immersive Artifacts - Makes Artifacts uniquely powerful, not just "Oh, that's nice, but I have something better"
  • Rustic Clothing - More, diverse clothing options for you and the NPC's.
  • Cloaks of Skyrim - Adds more cloaks, and thus diversity.
  • Circlets or Masks with all Robes and Hoods - A logic fix. You should be able to wear a circlet or a mask with a hood.
  • Equippable Tomes - Belt-Worn Books - Adds flavor to spellcasters and increases their potency a little.
  • Simply Bigger Trees - Makes all trees and collision detection simply larger. 1.8x larger. I'm not sold on this because it really adds a lot of visual clutter in forests - however - a forest should be visually cluttered.
  • Diverse Dragons Collection SE - Adds 20+ dragon variants with 7 levels each for diversity.
  • GIST - Genuinely Intelligent Soul Trap - Shuffles souls into appropriately sized stones as able, eliminating the age-old problem of filling Grand gems with Common souls.
  • Diverse Werewolves - For the same reason as Diverse Dragons.
  • SkyTEST - Realistic Animals and Predators - Changes wildlife AI so it's more natural. Wolves run now when injured instead of being kamikaze bombers.
  • OBIS - More and better organized Bandits, with lots of variety. Bandits work with Immersive Armor and Weapons (above) for more diversity, and can go out on patrols
  • The Notice Board SE - Adds notice boards near Inns, which offer quests and bounties, works in conjunction with OBIS for enhanced Bandit hunting.
  • More Bandit Camps - Sprinkling another 30 Bandit camps around the world.
  • Immersive Citizens - Overhaul citizen AI
  • Run For Your Lives - Citizens run from lethal scenarios, like Vampire and Dragon attacks, hiding safely inside their homes.
  • Immersive Patrols SE - Adds more patrols of Imperials, Stormcloaks, Thalmore, and Dawnguard - and they'll interact with each other in bloody combat sometimes. It is a war, after all.
  • Expanded Carriage Service - Carriages can take you to a lot more destinations, which works for iNeeds as you rest while riding.
  • Realistic Water Two - Overhaul/improve water appearances.
  • Auto Equip Shields to Back - Your equipped shield moves to your back when holstered.
  • A Quality World Map - High quality world map.
  • Pastel Map Markers - Colored map markers to replace the black & white.
  • Unread Books SSE - Easily identify which books you've read.
  • Book Covers Skyrim - Beautiful book re-skins.
  • Realistic Ragdoll and Force - Improved Ragdoll and Force physics.
  • Static Mesh Improvement Mod - SMIM - Enhanced meshes, improved visuals.
  • Ruins Clutter Improved - Enhanced ruins clutter and junk, using better meshes.
  • Dawnguard Delayed - Push back the Vampire invasion from a default level 10 to a different level of your choice (I opted for the Level 30 version).
  • Extended Stay - Longer Inn Rental - Rent rooms for longer than one day, helpful if you're in and out of an area and don't want to have to keep waking up the innkeeper so you can rest legally.
  • Better Horses - Making horses less vulnerable and more useful.
  • Total Character Makeover - A body "Beauty" mod without nudity. Improved faces, less ugly graphics staining on everyone you meet.
  • Project AHO - A quality, large add-on that starts optionally at Level 15.
  • SkyUI - UI improvements for PC users. Be sure to check the MCM in the System menu while playing Skyrim to toggle off maps if you're getting a map error. Requires SKSE 64.
Mostly, this is a collection of mods that greatly increases diversity in the game while improving visuals and reducing exploits.
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

Post by Tampa_Gamer »

Many thanks Paingod for the posting and taking the time to link. My last go-around (which I think is somewhere in this thread) I used S.T.E.P.https://www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/11 but that was a very lengthy and very granular week-long process that still resulted in a somewhat buggy game that I didn't find out what bugged until about 25 hours into it.

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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

Post by Paingod »

Tampa_Gamer wrote:
Wed Aug 08, 2018 12:53 pm
... that was a very lengthy and very granular week-long process that still resulted in a somewhat buggy game that I didn't find out what bugged until about 25 hours into it.
Ouch.

I'd say it took me a few hours to hunt for and download everything, and then another couple hours of exploring tools and settings in total. I'm pretty sure I'm done tinkering now and am going to just play.
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

Post by Paingod »

Last night I infiltrated a bandit camp, killed a Chief, and made off with a Necklace that someone in Dawnstar had lost. The reward for this - I assume randomly generated - mission was higher than I expected. Yes, the fight to get in was hard. Yes the Chief was a pain. Yes I had to travel halfway across the world to deliver it. I was still surprised I got 2,400 Septims instead of 500. I'm not sure that the Notice Board doesn't need a little nerfing. That payout almost doubled my pocket change.

The best part was arriving to deliver the necklace and finding a group of people huddled around a priest, begging him to help stop their terrible nightmares. Since he can't, he asks me to. Hooray quest chains! Together we visited a Temple to Vaermina, where we woke up a bunch of angry priests and Orcs and then banished the Skull of Corruption. This is one of the "Zim's Artifacts" the mod touches, I assume. The Wiki says it's a pretty mundane staff that does damage and is charged with dreams of sleeping people. The new artifact causes a target to flee in terror for 30 seconds and holds 3 charges, charged with dreams still. A nice change, but not worth murdering a possible companion and generally decent guy over.

Fighting last night made me question my sanity, or maybe it's just OBIS. Some bandits were typical bandit fodder. Easily killed in one or two stealth bow hits with long draws. Some bandits were only annoyed by such an attack and I really had to cheese my way past them by repeatedly stealth-shotting them and running to hide so they'd stop hunting for me. Rinse, repeat. Standing toe-to-toe with them, even if I was timing attacks and blocks correctly, was lethal. So far there's only been one or two of these super-bandits in each camp. Probably by design.

I may have to scale back Frostfall. I have only a brief time - maybe a minute or so in some of the worst conditions - before I'm frostbitten and severely impaired. Working in the northern end of Skyrim isn't immersive, it's tedious. When that NPC (above) wanted to visit the temple, he had me escort him there. Slowly. Up a mountainside. In a blizzard. I had to leave him and run back to town three times to warm up before we got to our destination. Even when the blizzard ended, I wasn't able to stay outside long. Thing is, I've been in a blizzard. Lots of them. I've been in sub-zero temperatures. I know that if I was wearing padded clothing (leather armor), a thick cloak, a hood, a facemask - it would take a lot longer than 90 seconds for my body to start suffering. Moreso if you're active. I'm going to either need to find a way to scale back the speed this mod works at or turn it off. I really like the concept. I just don't like that my feet and hands are frostbitten after an extremely brief exposure to the elements.

The compounded penalties for being cold, tired, hungry, and thirsty are impressive. It really weakens you in a very complete sense. A lot of my skills are in the negative, and some that are naturally around 40 are back down in the single digits. Health, Stamina, and Magicka are all impaired as well.

The expanded carriage service is really nice. I love the immersive feeling attached to it, and it is the right way to fast travel. I wish I had more gaming time and it wasn't as precious as it is to me, or I'd spend more time on foot and less time fast travelling.

*Edit: A little research shows that Frostfall is pretty highly customizable, and that I'm also having issues with SkyUI not showing exposure bars and armor values correctly. I'll have to do a little troubleshooting, and can force/set the weather resistance values of my gear manually to better match my expectations of how well it will protect me.
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

Post by Tampa_Gamer »

Appreciate the update on potential tweaks to be made to the mods to enjoy them. This is back to school week for my kids so things are a bit chaotic in our household so unfortunately my gaming/modding time is nil until this weekend (except of course for *researching* during work).

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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

Post by Paingod »

Tampa_Gamer wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 7:49 am
(except of course for *researching* during work).
I feel bad saying it, but I did make use of the company's fiber connection to DL all my mods so I could save all that time when I got home. Stuffed them in my USB drive and had them ready to go in minutes when I fired up the Mod Manager. :D

I wish my time wasn't so limited. After the kids go to bed and my wife falls asleep, I get 2-3 hours of quiet time to play before I'm too tired to keep my eyes open. In Skyrim, that's maybe three quests/caves/dungeons/forts. :?
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

Post by TheMix »

I had similar feelings about Frostfall. "Tedious" is an excellent descriptor. I played with the mage start. So my entire early game was set in the north. It was a serious P.I.T.A. Later it gets easier as you get some skill points and better gear. I even got to the point where I could swim in the frigid water for a while without issue. I believe there are some Warmth spells you can learn that will help. Though having to constantly cast them was a bit of a pain too.
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Re: Elder Scrolls Skyrim thread

Post by wire »

One of these days I'm going to finish Skyrim. I get going and plow through several quest chains, become the leader of several guilds and then take a break and never get back to the main story. When I do I start over...and over...and over.

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