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Complete Skyrim Graphic+Gameplay+NPC Overhaul // 65 compatible and tested Mod's for the bestlooking Skyrim
All Mod's have been tested and are compatible with each other. Significant visual improvement, better looking characters, better bodyphysics (like in Dead or Alive), better looking citys and objects, better blood, better bumpmapping, etc. (countless things). Everything that should have already been fixed in the vanilla game. Better Followers.
You all know the pictures that are shown in articles named "How Skyrim looks with 100 Mod's installed" or any similar title. But then you read this article and there are just some awesome pic's (and believe me the framerate must be 5-10 fps at most, if you ask me) and none or only little information on the running modifications. My goal is to change that and give you the bestlooking skyrim, that still runs (most of the time) smootly on an up to date system. I have also added a few tweaks that should all have already been in the vanilla game. I've testet all of the following mod's myself and am running all of these simulaniously at the time and for the last 100 hours of questing and slaying dragons.
I am aware that there are already other Mod Guides online covering some of my listed mod's and all. But my goal was to make a guide for a complete Skyrim Overhaul with all compatibility issues resolved and all mod's working perfectly together.
This guide includes the most important facts of my collected knowledge wich I like to share, because modding isn't always as save as it seems. Make sure to ALWAYS make backups of your Skyrim/Data folder (or at least of each subfolder you are adding/overwriting files) before installing mod's. Make backups of your savegames in your C:\Users\"yourusername\Documents\My Games\Skyrim folder as well.
There are two different kind of modifications the mod's hostet on the steamworkshop and the mod's on nexusmods.
The steamworkshop mod's are the easiest to install, just suscribe the mod and let steam handle the rest (There are two exceptions Kern and EzE's 3D Worldmap but just read my description for each mod).
For the nexusmod's you first have to register on their site, download the nexus mod manager (NMM) and you are ready to go, it is still a beta version but it runs fine. Make sure to restart your modmanager before proceeding with the installation of a fresh downloaded mod and always start the NMM as admin. If you install a just downloaded mod and NMM asks you "if you want to upgrade" always say no! If you like you can install all mod's from nexus manually, by copying the subfolders into your Skyrim/Datafolder (read the readme), but be aware if you want to uninstall these files you have to do it manually as well.
The reason for choosing Mods from Steamworkshop AND Nexusmods is, that not all mod's are available on the workshop and some mod's on nexus are just better. But if the mod is available on both sites I chose the workshop one's for easier installation and automated updates.
If needed I added a [Install note] to each of the nexus files, the workshop files you just need to suscribe.
If you have a lot of mod's installed your mod load order is very important, because some mod's rely on each other and some need files from an other mod that should be loaded before. If you aren't paying any attention to your loadorder it may crash your game or decrease performence. There is a tool called BOSS which handles these issues (in case BOSS knows all these mods), but i have added my personal loadorder below if you just want to install the mod's provided in this guide. You can download BOSS from google code http://code.google.com/p/better-oblivion-sorting-software/downloads/list and endorse the file here http://skyrim.nexusmods.com/mods/6 if you like.
About endorsing files, if you liked a particular mod it would be much appreciated if you endorsed that file on nexusmods, or give it a thumbsup if it's a workshop file.
Most mod's are subjectet to constant changes and updates, so it is your responsibility to read the readme carefully before installing. Everything worked fine on the day I wrote this guide. Modding is always a bit dangerous, I'm happy to have made a lot of backups.
I have labled each mod like below because some people don't like loreunfriendly mod's. Most of the mod's I chose are lorefriendly, but some optional mod's that I liked to share are not.
[Lorefriendly] yes [Lorefriendly] mostly [Lorefriendly] no
In case you don't know what lorefriendly means, here's a little quote:
"When a mod is lore friendly, it basically means it fits in with the rest of the commercially released ("vanilla") game, and doesn't stick out like a sore thumb. For example, a mod that adds a medieval style dungeon under a castle would be lore-friendly because it fits in the setting of Oblivion (or Morrowind), as both borrow heavily from real medieval things for their setting. A mod that adds a disco strobe light/ball however, would not be a logical extension of the setting, it would be out of place to a very extreme degree. This would be lore unfriendly. The term, like most terms of this sort, can be a bit subjective."
At the end there is a little hints section, where I listet all important console commands, as well as some things you can do if something bad happened or did go wrong. Even if you already have some issues and dont't know how to solve them.
Graphic Overhaul World
//////////////////// Graphic Overhaul World ////////////////////
Skyrim HD - 2K Textures by NebuLa http://skyrim.nexusmods.com/mods/607 [Lorefriendly] yes Makes Skyrim absolutely AWESOME looking, just look at the pictures the official HD package was a mockery! [Install note] just install all 4 packages with NMM be sure to overwrite all files Take the "Lite" texture packages if you have a low spec PC.
Terrain Bump http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=14111 [Lorefriendly] yes Enhances the bumpmapping on most terrain textures // Mod is currently unavailable via steam, searching for an alternative but didn't find anything so far, plz msg me or leave a comment if you know of a similar mod, thx! // Here is an alternative Link to the Mod, btw. thanks to DruggaWugga™ who found this on the Nexus!
//////////////////// Graphic Overhaul Character ////////////////////
ApachiiSkyHair by Apachii http://skyrim.nexusmods.com/mods/10168 [Lorefriendly] yes Add's fabulous new hair from the witcher and Sims 2. If you want to give this hair to your current caracter plz read the readme. [Install note] just install with NMM, if you want to wear a helmet, use the helmet wigs under optional files there are also a lot of loreunfriendly hairstyles under the optional files if you like those. I'am playing in first person mode, so i only changed the NPC's hair to Apachii if you like to have it on your character plz read the quote below!
Originally posted by Apachii:
============================================= How to give your new character Apachii Sky Hair: ============================================= In the character creation window you can browse through the hairstyles and choose, they are first in the hair selection before the Default "vanilla" hair styles. =================================================== How to change the hair on your existing character: =================================================== On PC, open console(`) and type showracemenu -enter- It brings up the character customization menu. Make sure you are in the third person view before editing your character, otherwise you will be invisible, and unable to see the changes made on your character showracemenu- will NOT modify your attributes/skills/points/etc. unless you change the race, sex, or select a preset from the list. Modifying purely cosmetic things like hair will leave your points unchanged.If the character moves it's hands in front like they were tied, it's a clear indication that the skills will be messed up,if the hands remain parallel to the body it's fine. A way to fix the modified attributes error is to simply re-equip your gear. You also need to re-enter (or change) your name.
ApachiiSkyHair NPC Overhaul by Spewed http://skyrim.nexusmods.com/mods/15411 [Lorefriendly] mostly If you want every NPC running around with awesome hair. Be sure to make a copy of your /meshes and /textures folder in case of a black face bug. [Install note] just install with NMM, after that install the Color Mismatch fixes. If you are okay with using the creation kit, you can change the hairstyles manualy for this mod, I have added a youtube vid explaining this in the Hints / Conclusion section in the bottom part of this guide.
The Eyes Of Beauty by Gabriel Mailhot http://skyrim.nexusmods.com/mods/13722 [Lorefriendly] yes High resolution eyes [Install note] just install with NMM, be sure to install the "Eyes of Beauty NPC eyes texture replacer" under the optional files and if you have Dawnguard there is also a replacer for the vampires called "The Eyes of Beauty Dawnguard update"
Calientes Female Body Mod Big Bottom Edition -CBBE- by Caliente http://skyrim.nexusmods.com/mods/2666 (see options in readme) http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=8685 (nevernude edition) [Lorefriendly] yes Essential Mod if you want better looking females. You can download this at steam, but if you want naked females and or BBP Support (Bouncing Breasts) you need to download the adult version at nexus. [Install note] Be sure to read the readme carefully, there are a lot of body choises and if you wish you can make your own body with a tool called body slide. The new version has a NMM Installer wich makes install a LOT easier. If you want too use the CHSBHC Mod below, make sure to copy the BBP textures+meshes in the optional folder or just make the right choises if you are using the installer version.
Fair Skin Complexion Sweaty Body-ADEC-CBBE-UNP-UNPB by HHaleyy // -update- http://skyrim.nexusmods.com/mods/19666 [Lorefriendly] yes/mostly Add' a sweaty look to female skintextures. [Install note] Be sure to install all 3 files in this order: 1. CBBE 2. Face mod 3. Fair Skin Complexion for CBBE 4. FSC Face patch 5. Sweaty Body 6. FSC Lines on Skin Fix
// The Mod above is after I've checked today not anymore available at the Nexus, very sad because it was one of my favourites! Have found an alternative mod that does the same thing here http://skyrim.nexusmods.com/mods/28946 but I haven't had time to try that out yet, and since I love the spectecular texture I have right now I don't think that I'll do until I have to reinstall my skyrim. Plz give me some feedback if you have tried the new mod out //
CHSBHC - BBP - Nude and Jiggly Mod by CherryHotaling http://skyrim.nexusmods.com/mods/4888 [Lorefriendly] yes/mostly If you liked the bouncing boobies from Dead or Alive and have the CBBE Mod above installed, be sure to install CHSBHC :-) [Install note] Attention! Be sure to copy and overwrite the hip meshes from the CBBE Mod above after installation, to avoid the open/clipping hip bug. You need BBP compatible armor/clothes (see links in Armor section), otherwise the effect is just seen if the npc is topless (can cause clipping issues because pants/stockings won't fit if character wears no top).
Originally posted by CherryHotaling:
-realistic ragdolls mod will cause the breasts to have VERY odd behavior because the breasts use the the built in physics for some movement.
Personally I played most of the time with the realistic ragdolls mod, and didn't realize any difference, just don't steal clothes from a dead womens body... But I'm gonna test that out as soon as I get to it. If you want to drive save, don't install the ragdoll mod.
//////////////////// Towns and villages enhanced (optional) Add's more objects, Performance drain… ////////////////////
There is nothing much to say about these mod's just install them if you have a powerful pc. They add at least 1000 objects to each of the cities. Framerate drop assured :-) but who likes to walk through a deserted ciity.
EzE's - Remove 3D Map Camera Restrictions http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=68221934 [Lorefriendly] yes Removes the camera restrictions, now you can zoom in like in google maps, now you see where you really are and where to walk around hills. [Install note] Caution: Read the readme you have to change some entries in the Skyrim.ini located at C:\Users\"yourusername\Documents\My Games\Skyrim
Spend Dragon Souls For Perks http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=13544 [Lorefriendly] mostly You can only skill to level 80 in the vanilla version, for each level you get one perk point. But there are a lot more perks to choose, if you are a real dragonslayer and have dragonsouls to the dozen, you can exchange those souls for perks with this mod. Great work! There is a triplet of stones near Riverwood where you can trade in your souls, the exact location is seen in the picture below
//////////////////// NPC //////////////////// Amazing Follower Tweaks http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=1415880 [Lorefriendly] yes Essential gameplay mod, you can have up to five followers, you can let your followers wait, summon them into combat, go into stealth mode, change their clothes, choose their skills, let them be pure mages/warriors what ever you like.
Reduced Distance NPC Greetings http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=7492 [Lorefriendly] yes Ever brewed a potion at an alchemy table that's placed in a shop? Hate to hear the 5 sentences bethesda teached the shopceeper every 15 seconds over and over again! Now the NPC's only talk to you if they are spoken to or if you bump into them.
////////// Currently unavailable via Nexus, if someone knows an equivalent Mod or Source plz feel free to contact me //////////
Girls of Skyrim - add 4 Companions and 5 Playable Characters by basskimm http://skyrim.nexusmods.com/mods/21038 [Lorefriendly] yes An other follower mod wich add's four pretty girls. This is a standalone mod, you dont't need any CBBE or Apachii hair installed. [Install note] If you need just one or two of the girls you can disalbe the other ones in your mod menu.
Victorias High Heel walk Animation plus BBP by xp32 http://skyrim.nexusmods.com/mods/13272 Changes the normal walking animation into a sexy walk animation, works perfectly with the high heels from different mods'. [Install note] Needs Xp32Skeletton, see below
XP32 Maximum Skeleton -XPMS by xp32 http://skyrim.nexusmods.com/mods/26800 [Lorefriendly] yes Needed for the Victorias High Hell walk Animation, supports CHSBHC and is compatible with all mod's listed by me and most other mod's.
Zaz Resources - Whips Restraints and Bondage by rofloski http://skyrim.nexusmods.com/mods/24023 I have this mod just because of the whip :) for maximum follower efficency issues only ^^ if you need character poses you have to use FNIS (link below) after the installation of this mod to enable the scripts.
Fores New Idles in Skyrim - FNIS by fore http://skyrim.nexusmods.com/mods/11811 Add's some new idle animations (look under restoration magic! and use them like a spell), but it is also needed for the Zaz Resources - Whips Restraints mod above (and some other mods wich add custom idle animations) [Install note] run GenerateFNISforUsers.exe click on "Update FNIS Behavior" and exit If there are any further questions read this article http://skyrim.nexusmods.com/articles/540
Skyrim NPC Editor 0_75_1 by foretrenty http://skyrim.nexusmods.com/mods/4554 If all these readily available modded followers aren't enough just build your own! This is no mod its more a tool you can use to create NPC's.
Remodeled Armor for CBBEv3 Bodyslide and BBP by ChronoTrigger77 http://skyrim.nexusmods.com/mods/25259 [Lorefriendly] mostly Changes a whole lot of female armor's (such as the town guards armor) into a BBP compatible and a more skimpy looking version, almost essential if you have CHSBHC installed.
For all people that aren't compfortable with using boss, here is my personal load order:
But it takes a lot of time sorting them manually, so just use boss and move the unrecognized files from the bottom up into their coresponding cathegory (SMIM Part II unrecognized below Part I that hast been recognized etc.)
If you have issues loading your savegame, there are a lot of possibilities to solve this problem. If your pc freezes or you get a CTD then try loading an older savegame that works and load the failing one after that. There are always 3 auto saves try each one out, hopefully one works. If everything fails, try to lower your graphic settings before loading. Save often! Save indoors facing a wall, less to load less savegame issues... Let your followers wait if you get CTD while opening a door. Stand still before opening a door and wait for a second before opening a door. Don't save in the middle of a dragon fight when your five followers are casting spells an you are out in the open with a lot of other NPC's. Always make a clean save before changing mods. If you have changed your loadorder and your game won't load the savegame you can find out what your loadoarder was by using Wyre Bash.
If you are a real perfectionist an aren't happy with the hair style choices Spewed made in his ApachiiSkyHair NPC Overhaul mod you can use the step by step YouTube Tutorial he made to change that. You have to download the Creation Kit Bethesda made first. Go to your steam library you will find the creation kit in the tools section. If you have the Main file ApachiiSkyHair_v_1_5_Full and the optional ApachiiSkyHairFemale_v_1_3 installed the CK won't allow you to start because of two Masterfiles active, please add "bAllowMultipleMasterLoads=1" under [General] to your SkyrimEditor.ini in your /Skyrim folder.
Do this especially if you dislike this:
Black Face Bug
There is the rare possibility of some NPC's having a black face or a darker forehead. This is caused by wrong installed head meshes. Be sure to apply the Headmeshfixes (download all main files from nexus!) if you are using the ApachiiSkyHair NPC Overhaul. If this problem still persists, here is a tutorial to resolve this http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=rOXF89QtgYM you have to use the Creation Kit which is downloadable through steam. But my personal prefered method is as followed, open console click on character with bugged face and type: equipitem 0005A9E3 1
Please be aware that using more than one physics mod is not recommended! Or using two different mod's that change the same thing, like a complete housecarl overhaul and a seperate mod that changes lydia, no good!
A very easy way to change the clothes of your followers or random NPC's is to use the console commands.
To equip an NPC with an item you have stand really close to your NPC facing him, hit the "^" tilde-key to open he console (above the TAB button, below ESC), move your mousearrow opon your NPC and click (the followers editor id appears in the middle on the screen) and type in the following syntax:
equipitem "Editor ID" 1
Before you do that you usually have to unequip the item the follower is currently wearing. To unequip items there are two possibillities:
If you want to unequip all items at the same time with one command you can type in:
but the NPC puts those clothes back on after some time so it is better to unequip each item manually. Therefore you need the "item id" of the item you want to unequip. To show every item worn and in the inventory of your NPC type the following:
this shows the NPC's whole inventory. Clothes that are worn are shown as such. Now you just have to unequip each item you want to loose manually with the following command:
unequipitem "Editor ID" 1
this removes the worn item permanently. After that you can equip the desired items like shown above. If you want to equip an item and don't know the editor id it helps to know the name of the item, type:
and it shows all items with the name you tiped in quotes. To narrow the search down it is possible to type instead of:
help "robes" (shows all robes, at least 30 different items to search through)
help "hooded robes" (to show all hooded robes instead of all robes, or type "grey robes" or "black robes" to search for the grey or the black robes)
If there is some misbehaviour or bug with the NPC's like they have no head or they are shuffling instead of walking (this kind of thing really happens, afterall it is a sandboxed open world game), open console, click on them and then type: