There are so many cool mods out there, Rakuno published a great list which I need to check out properly and Ocho also has listed his top 10 mods. *Edit* Ravanel has also listed the mods she uses. All 3 lists are definitely worth checking out. I only have a few mods installed as I am over-cautious and worry about overloading my system and whether or not mods will clash with each other…
- Better Females by Bella (core packs) by Teleportdactyl (original mod on nexus by BellaGail) Its not a look I usually go for but I don’t particularly like the standard wood elf model.
- The Reserve by Lixthe gorgeous home with everything you need
- Build Your Own Home by Supernastypants its just a lot of fun!
- Automatic Perks by Mecha Gamera (CHEAT mod) Basically if you have levelled a skill and are entitled to a perk, you gain it. You don’t have to wait and skill up one perk per level. Yes it is slightly overpowered but given the amount of hours I’ve played, I felt justified ;)
- Salt Pile Crafting by SHiLLySiT Make salt from mudcrab chitin. Its just nice to have another source of salt rather than scavenging for it.
- More Rain by Zappoo
- Better Dynamic Snow by DMP
- Arrowsmith: Vanilla Edition by Samutz A must for archers.
I think most of these mods are available on nexus too, I use the Steam workshop currently but I may go back to using the nexus mod manager.
Some screenshots of before and after screenies of Better Females, some Build Your Own Home shots (am still building the home) and a few from The Reserve (there are more rooms and facilities outside that I didn’t take screenies of):
I thought people might be interested in how I set my character up. I play a sneaky, bow-wielding thief type. I use my bow exclusively, even at short range (the only time I use melee weapons are either if my bow is disarmed and I don’t have a backup or against ice wraiths who are hard to hit with a bow). I also don’t really use magic… although having a few healing/conjuring spells and stock of scrolls can be handy. I use the Shouts though (and normally, as I press Z for Fus do Rah or the turn to ice shout, I hope I haven’t got Whirlwind Sprint active :P) I never use a companion, it doesn’t quite work with my playstyle and I just don’t really like it… I like being on my own :)
This is the great thing about Skyrim, there are so many ways to play and build your character, and they all work :)
The Thieves Guild questline is, in my opinion, the best questline in the game. The characters are great and really well-voiced, there are twists and turns, lots of sneaking AND lots of sneaking with Brynjolf and Karliah and you end up with 3 sets of great sneaky gear. I love the atmosphere of the Thieves Guild, it plays into the gentleman thief stereotype (no killing – bad for business ;)) or the old east end stereotype – bit naughty but their hearts are in the right place.
Back in the day, when I played Daggerfall I used to be a light armoured melee type (and levitate! I miss levitate!), Morrowind I was still meleeing but started using the bow a lot more and then in Oblivion, I finally found my calling and started properly down the sneak thief route. It still feels a bit wrong when I walk around town in my thieves guild gear and I’m not kill on sight… It was fantastic though when I found the bust of the Gray Fox in Skyrim!
I get my health to a level where I’m surviving enough (200 is usually my first goal), then I bump up endurance so I can carry more and zoom with my bow for longer. I will put some points into mana, so I can cast some last-resort panic spells. Then carry on health > endurance > mana
I have now started using the Perk Cheat (listed above) but the perks that follow are easily achievable without resorting to a cheat. I’ve only been using the cheat for the last few days and I already had my main trees sorted, so for me, its just given a boost to speech and crafting. I prioritise the Archery, Sneak and Lockpicking trees, and will get those levelled first.
Archery tree: I max out this tree.
Sneak tree: I max out Stealth, Muffled Movement, Backstab – to get to next perk~>Deadly Aim. I don’t find the rest of the sneak tree to be particularly useful (I like to setoff traps and lure enemy in, the roll looks very cool but erm doesn’t seem to have any actual benefit)
Lockpicking: I max out all except for Locksmith (picking locks isn’t that difficult esp with the other perks) and Unbreakable (this skill would be more useful at beginning when picks are limited, by the time you get to it I tend to have picks coming out of my ears)
Pickpocket: I just spend enough points to get to Extra Pockets which increases your carrying capacity by 100
Light Armour: I tend to just spend in Agile Defender and Custom Fit as I prioritise damage.
Those are my core trees. Once I know I have enough perks to do the above I’ll look at other trees such as Speech or Restoration. For crafting, I would put points into alchemy first, then enchanting and then smithing. Reason being, that potions are always useful, being able to enchant your looted gear is also useful. You can make some awesome gear with smithing but… I find the game isn’t difficult with the quested or looted gear you gain so its not a huge deal for me.
So, what mods do you use and how do you build your character?