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TESIV: Oblivion - So you want to start using mods, eh?

Ledsen

Member
---Update Jan 18 2012: Fixed image links
---Update Nov 19 2011: Changed link to UOP
---Update Oct 1 2011: Small update, just updated a few links
---Update July 1 2011: Hello Steam Summer sale buyers :) Added links to all mods in the mod list and added some new mods. CREATED A BASHED PATCH GUIDE!
---Update April 16 2011: Just want to plug jim-jam bongs' awesome thread Fallout 3 with mods: what, why and how. Modding FO3 should feel pretty familiar if you've already checked out my thread, or vice versa. Oh, and I also changed some text in the guide for clarity.
---Updated January 5 2011: Re-arranged the guide, added some headlines, table of contents and the step-by-step section
---Updated January 1 2011: And some more text :)
---Updated Dec 31 2010: More clarifications and added bit about OBGE
---Updated Dec 13 2010: Clarified some things in the guide

You should! And I can help you :) Make sure you READ THE WHOLE GUIDE BEFORE INSTALLING ANYTHING! It's not that long and will hopefully be a big help.

---TABLE OF CONTENTS---

- Introduction
- Links
- External Programs
- How do mods work?
- OMODs and why they are awesome
- Making your own OMODs
- Install Order
- Load Order
- BOSS (Better Oblivion Sorting Software) and Load Order
- Wrye Bash: The Bashed Patch
- Archive Invalidation
- Steam Users: Changing the date on .BSA files before installing any mods
- Step-by-step guide to installing your mods
- Which mods you should use

---INTRODUCTION---

In this thread you can ask questions and get help about using mods for Oblivion. But which mods should you use? How do you install them? Why should you even use them?

Let's answer the last question first. Mods for Oblivion can change the game completely. They can give you prettier graphics, a better UI, a new leveling system giving you XP like in Fallout 3, hundreds of new weapons and armor, new cities, huge new quests, companion characters with back-stories and advanced (by Oblivion standards) AI capabilities, etc. Basically if you can imagine it, someone probably created it already. The Oblivion mods community is incredibly active and there are thousands and thousands of mods to choose from. They are often regularly updated and changed. This makes the prospect of finding a few you like very intimidating, especially for beginners. Don't worry, I'll help :)

So now you know why you should use mods, but how do you do it? Well, I'll give you some important links. Also you should know that when someone mentions "vanilla" Oblivion, they mean the regular game without any mods whatsoever.

---LINKS---

First, the two download sites you'll need. Yes, you may need to register, but it's free (yes, even at FilePlanet) and it's fast. After you do, you can get all the mods you'll ever need. They also have very useful "top 100" lists and other means of finding the most popular and/or best mods.

- TESNexus
- Planet Elder Scrolls

Next, a few useful sites you'll want to bookmark.

- The Official Oblivion Mods Forum. This is where it happens. All the modders hang out here, mods get released here, and you can get help with any question you have from the most competent people in the scene. It is also here that you can find tons of "mod lists" for beginners or advanced users, so be sure to make an account, look around a bit and ask questions!

- TESCOSI. This is a guide to everything you'll need to know about modding Oblivion. I'll give you some basic info later, but you really should check out this site and read as much as you can. It may have a slightly confusing layout, but it's an amazing resource.

- Dead End Thrills Oblivion Modding Guide. This is made by a GAF:er, yay! It's a step-by-step guide to modding your game with some of the most popular mods out there. It's a bit old and so slightly outdated mods-wise compared to my list further down, but still awesome for beginners. I recommend you at least read through it once even if you don't use it.

- The Oblivion Texture Overhaul. This is a guide to the sometimes confusing world of texture mods. It hasn't been updated in a very long time, but texture mods aren't released at the same breakneck pace as other kinds of mods, so it's still very useful.

---EXTERNAL PROGRAMS---

The Oblivion community has worked hard to make mods better and easier to install. These programs will help you with this.

- Oblivion Mod Manager (OBMM) helps you install and manage mods. It's explained in the section below. You'll be using this A LOT.

- Oblivion Script Extender is required for many mods to work. It adds scripting functions and other advanced stuff that modders can use in their mods, but you only have to worry about installing it. If you have the Steam version of Oblivion, there is a slightly different install process. Just check the readme!

Oblivion Graphics Extender (OBGE) is actually a very powerful plugin for OBSE, so you'll need OBSE first if you want to use this. OBGE is very important if you want the kind of graphics you see in the pics below. Basically getting the best graphics depends on three things: Texture replacers, body replacers and OBGE. Texture replacers fix the blurry textures, body replacers fix the ugly people's ugly bodies, and OBGE gives you the opportunity to use modern shaders and other graphical tricks in Oblivion. I personally don't use it, since it's too demanding for my rig, but you should check it out and learn how to enable its features if you have a powerful computer.

- Wrye Bash is an extremely powerful program for installing mods and many many other things. Basically it's OBMM on crack+tons of other features. I don't use it for installing mods simply because I find it to be quite complicated, although I do use it for making a Bashed Patch (read on). Most hardcore modders swear by it because it has so many useful features lacking in OBMM (which is much more limited in its functionality). Wrye Bash has many components within it, but one of the most important is the one that handles installation of mods. It's called "BAIN" and is extremely powerful, but again, I don't use it and can't really explain it that well. You may also need to use Wrye Bash even if you use OBMM for installing, for a feature called "Bashed Patch", although this is only necessary for a few special mods. More about that in the BOSS section. Here is Wrye's homepage which contains large amounts of documentation about Wrye Bash and other stuff he's done. NOTE: I'm using Wrye Bash 291, and there seems to be some pretty big changes in the latest version (293). I don't know what they are, so if you want to be sure that you'll be able to follow along with my guide, just use 291 :)

- Better Oblivion Sorting Software (BOSS) manages your load order, and is explained below.

---HOW DO MODS WORK?---

(NOTE: DO NOT MOVE FILES INTO THE DATA FOLDER MANUALLY if you're using OBMM to make OMODs instead. OBMM will take care of everything automatically. This paragraph is not meant as a guide but as an illustration of how mods work. When you're ready to start installing mods, preferably after reading through the rest of the guide, refer to the step-by-step guide further down)

Okay, so how do mods work? Basically, when you download a mod, it can come in a few formats. If it's a normal .zip file, unzip it first. Usually there's a readme and a few folders with names like "textures", "meshes" and the like. If you're doing a manual installation without using OBMM (you shouldn't), these folders all go in the "Data" folder in your main Oblivion folder. Often (but not always!) there will be a .esp or .esm file as well, this also goes in "Data". The .esp or .esm is the main mod file, the file that controls everything about the mod unless it's a simple texture replacement mod in which case no such file is usually needed. It must be activated by starting the Oblivion Launcher, clicking "Data" and checking the .esp or .esm file in the list. You'll notice that the normal game also uses these files, with .esm (the m stands for master) files for the main Oblivion and Shivering Isle files, and .esp files for the smaller DLC content.

---OMODS AND WHY THEY ARE AWESOME---

This can all be made much easier if the mod comes in .omod format. omod is a format used by the third party program Oblivion Mod Manager (OBMM), and it makes installing mods a breeze. Essentially an .omod file is a kind of package file, like a .zip file, that contains the entire mod within it. It also has some extra capabilities used by OBMM. First, you must download and install OBMM. Then, simply put the single .omod file in the omod folder specified by OBMM (this folder can be changed from within the program) and start the program. On your left, you will see your .esp and .esm files and if they are activated or not. On your right, you will see a list of your different omods. If an omod has a green square next to it, it's ready to be installed. Simply double click and OBMM will do everything for you. The square will turn blue, which means it's been extracted and installed into the Oblivion directory, and the .esp or .esm will be checked for you (so you don't have to check it in the launcher). It's that easy! The omod file itself will stay where it is after extraction, meaning that when you uninstall an omod using OBMM, the only thing that gets removed are the extracted files in the Oblivion directory. You can basically treat your omod directory as an archive for all your mods, and you never need to move them or worry about copying them anywhere. If you don't want to use a mod, simply uninstall it using OBMM.

---MAKING YOUR OWN OMODS---

Many mods come in omod format, and if they don't, it's VERY easy to make you own omod. For example, you download a mod called "My Oblivion House". It's a .zip file containing "My Oblivion House.esp" and two folders called "textures" and "meshes". Put these three items in a separate folder called "My Oblivion House", and start OBMM. The important thing here is that the files are in the correct folder structure, ie so that you could theoretically copy/paste the contents of the folder into your Oblivion/Data folder if you wanted to, and the mod would work. Now, in OBMM, click "create" at the bottom, and a new window will pop up. Press "Add folder", navigate to your "My Oblivion House" folder and press ok. If you want you can fill out details such as name, version, author and so on at the top of the window. You can also right-click the .esp you just added (if there is one) and choose "import mod details", this will usually fill in a few of the fields. If you want the mod readme accessible through a simple right-click and choosing it from a menu in OBMM, which is a VERY good idea, click "edit readme" and copy/paste the mods readme in here. Now click "create omod" and you will soon see your new omod pop up in the right window, ready to be installed! The omod file itself will be stored in your specified omod folder just like the ready-made ones you download. If you want, you can now delete any .zip archive or folder you downloaded and simply keep the omod file you made, since it contains the entire mod.

---INSTALL ORDER---

Install order can be very important. The thing is, sometimes different mods you have will replace the exact same file. For example, two different mods may want to modify the exact same texture file. Obviously the mod you install last will take precedence because it will replace the texture file that is already there with its own. If an uninstalled mod potentially conflicts with a mod you've already installed, OBMM will show this by coloring the dot of the uninstalled omod red or black (depending on the severity of the conflict). You can right click on the omod, choose "view data conflicts", and it will show the conflicts with already installed mods. When you install it, OBMM will let you choose which files you want to overwrite and which ones you want to leave as they are. If you ctrl-click "yes" or "no" you will do "yes/no to all" and not have to strain your clicking finger as much :) Things like patches will obviously overwrite something, so they will usually be colored red or black. Don't worry about this! Conflicts are only bad if you know that the mod isn't supposed to overwrite something, or if it's going to overwrite files from another mod that you want to keep. For example, Oblivion XP (a mod that makes leveling use XP instead of the default system) comes with a few files that modify the interface. If you have previously installed an interface mod, Oblivion XP will conflict with it. This is supposed to happen! When you install the Oblivion XP omod, it will ask you which interface mod you use, and overwrite those files with its own, designed to fit the design of your chosen interface mod. So in that case, the conflict is no problem. This is very common.

Wrye Bash is extremely powerful when it comes to file conflicts. With it, you can choose which files from which mod will be used, no matter which order they were installed in. In OBMM, you would need to uninstall and re-install two conflicting mods if you change your mind about for example which texture to use. Not so in Wrye Bash. I don't know much more about this since I don't use Wrye Bash for installing, but it seems extremely useful if you like changing your mods around or experimenting with different mod setups.

---LOAD ORDER---

.esp and .esm files are loaded in a specific order, according to date. The exception is that .esm files are always loaded before .esp files (that's why they're called "master files"!) Load order is EXTREMELY important. Just as install order means files from one mod may overwrite the files from another you installed earlier, so load order means that information in the .esp of one mod may be "overruled" by information found in a mod later in the load order. For example, let's say two mods both want to make changes to a specific NPC. The first mod changes the NPC:s level, and the second mod changes his inventory, giving him a cool sword. These changes are stored in the .esp/.esm files. The problem is, Oblivion only allows one mod to change an NPC, an enemy, or anything else in the game. So instead of using the changes from both mods, only the changes from the mod that is loaded LAST will be shown in the game.

---BOSS (Better Oblivion Sorting Software) AND LOAD ORDER---

So what do you need to do about load order? Well, fortunately, there is an easy solution here as well :) A program called "Better Oblivion Sorting Software" (BOSS) will do your load ordering for you! It's constantly updated and contains data from thousands of mods and their proper place in the load order. So download and install BOSS. Then run "BOSS.exe" from your Oblivion/Data folder, and tada! Your load order has been set for you :) Do this every time you install a new mod (or after installing all of your mods).

Okay, so then there is Wrye Bash.

---WRYE BASH: THE BASHED PATCH---

NOTE: I'm using Wrye Bash 291, and there seems to be some pretty big changes in the latest version (293). I don't know what they are, so if you want to be sure that you'll be able to follow along with my guide, just use 291 :)

Wrye Bash is a very powerful program, and it has tons of different features. The only one I use personally is called "Bashed Patch", and it consolidates the conflicting changes from different mods into one .esp file (the Bashed Patch). This .esp file, basically a compilation of conflicting changes made by your other mods, will always be loaded last and thus always override everything else. This is very useful and in some cases required. There's really no reason NOT to make a Bashed Patch, although you may or may not actually strictly need it. You will still need to run BOSS though! If you have multiple mods that change things like item drop lists or NPC equipment, you'll have to do it in order to see the changes from all of those mods at once. I'll post here a short guide for getting a Bashed Patch after you've installed all your mods.

1. Install ALL YOUR MODS and Wrye Bash first (obviously).

2. Copy "Bashed Patch, 0.esp" from your Oblivion/Mopy/Extras folder, to your Oblivion/Data folder.

3. Run BOSS! BOSS will put "tags" on all your .esp/.esm files. These "tags" will be read by Wrye Bash when creating a Bashed Patch, and it tells the program how to deal with different .esp/.esm files and their content, for example which info to incorporate into the Bashed Patch, etc.

4. Open Wrye Bash and go to the "Mods" tab. You'll see a list of all your .esp/.esm files.

5. Right Click "Bashed Patch, 0.esp" and choose "Rebuild Patch".

6. A window may pop up asking if you want to automatically de-activate some mods. SAY YES! This is Wrye Bash informing you that these mods do not actually have to be active, they will instead be incorporated into the Bashed Patch completely! Great!

7. You'll see something similar to this:



Basically, this is were you choose what stuff to incorporate into your Bashed Patch. When you click an item on the left, the window on the right will show all your mods which include content of that type. For example, clicking "Import Inventory" will show all your mods which make changes to someones inventory. By checking the "Import Inventory" box on the left, and also checking the mod itself in the window on the right, those inventory changes will be imported into the Bashed Patch.

8. Check all the same boxes that I've checked in the above picture.

9. Individually click all the list items you just checked, EXCEPT "Import names", "Leveled Lists" (just leave this one on "automatic") and "Tweak Settings" and check ALL the mods in the window on the right.

10. Click "Import Names" and check every box, EXCEPT those that end with ".csv". They're there for some very specific purposes, and if you check them they'll probably fuck with names of stuff in your game.

11. Click "Tweak Settings" and check the boxes that sound like good tweaks to you. I can recommend "Horse Turning Speed" and "UOP Vampire and Aging Fix".

12. Click "Build Patch".

13. This takes a while... done! You know have your own Bashed Patch which makes sure that any conflicting changes in mods will play nice (at least most of the time) :) From now on, you'll have to repeat this procedure (from step 3) every time you add or remove mods.

---ARCHIVE INVALIDATION---

This bit is very, very important! I won't bore you with an explanation of what exactly archive invalidation is. Suffice to say, you need to do it or your texture replacement mods won't work properly, or at all. You only need to do it once though. Just open OBMM, go into the "utilities" menu on the right, choose "archive invalidation", and in the new window that pops up, press "update now".

---STEAM USERS: CHANGING THE DATES ON .BSA FILES BEFORE INSTALLING ANY MODS---

This is related to the above section, and is also very, very important!!!. The Steam version of Oblivion has, in it's data files folder, .bsa files (files that contain data such as texture and meshes for the vanilla game) that are dated around summer 2010, because that's when Oblivion was added to Steam. This will cause problems with your archive invalidation. So before you install any mods, open OBMM, go to utilities -> archive invalidation and press "reset .bsa timestamps". This will set the "last changed" date on ALL YOUR .BSA FILES to 01/01/2006, similar to the original release of the game. The reason you're doing this BEFORE installing any mods is that if you have .bsa files in the data files folder that belong to mods, the dates on these files will also be set to 2006. You do not want this! If you do it accidentally, simply download a program such as File Date Changer to change the dates back to a later date.

That's basically it for the Steam version, it's otherwise fully compatible with all mods (except the slightly different install procedure for OBSE which is detailed in its readme).



---STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE TO INSTALLING YOUR MODS

This won't be going into any detail on individual mods, it's more of a general guide based on what you've learned so far.

1. Download and install all external programs - see section at the top. After you've installed all of them, start a new game to make sure everything works (mainly for testing OBSE).

2. Change dates on BSA:s - You only need to do this if you're using the Steam version, but it should be done before you install any mods at all. See section "Steam Users: Changing the dates on .BSA files" for more info.

3. Archive Invalidation - You don't have to do this now, but you might as well, since you only have to do it once and that's it. See appropriate section for more info.

4. Download and install your mods - Now this is the important part. I will not be going into install order, since this is covered above, but also since it's very complicated and you'll have to figure it out yourself. If you don't want to bother, either don't install any complex mods, or stick to only mods from my mod list further down (not really recommended since finding mods you like is a big part of the fun, but you could do it to start out). This will have several steps per mod, like so:

---4a. Read the readme - The first thing you should do before installing any mod. Check for incompatibilities with any other mods you're using/want to use, and any special installation instructions.

---4b. Make an omod - Obviously not needed if the mod is already in omod format. See the appropriate section for more info.

---4c. Open OBMM and check for conflicts - If your omod is any other color than green, right click on the mod in OBMM and pick "View Data Conflicts". You will now see a list of all the files that your new mod will overwrite, if you install it. Make sure you're okay with this before you install.

---4d. Install the mod - Easy enough, just double-click it in OBMM.

---4e. Run BOSS.exe to correct load order - See appropriate section

---4f. Test the mod - Start up Oblivion, start a new game, and check that everything is running fine. If you can easily check that the mod is functioning, for example looking at the textures to see if your new texture pack is working, do that also.

---4g. Go back to 4a until you've installed all your mods

5. Create the Bashed Patch - see "Wrye Bash: The Bashed Patch" section above.

6. You're done! - make a final test run to make sure it's all working, and run BOSS.bat again just to be sure.

Guide continues in next post
 

Ledsen

Member
---WHICH MODS SHOULD YOU USE---

The answer is simple. ONLY YOU KNOW WHICH MODS YOU WANT IN YOUR GAME. That said, it's a jungle out there. Here I will list some basic mods that I myself use, and that are widely considered to be among the best of the best at what they do. You can install them in the order they are listed without any problems. Some of them come as omods, some don't. For the ones that don't, I can't stress enough how much easier everything will be if you make your own omods using OBMM (or use Wrye Bash to install if you've taken the time to learn its installation component).

I won't be doing a detailed installation guide for these mods, because most of them are pretty straightforward to install, and also because you should ALWAYS READ THE README anyway. I also won't list any weird or "out there" mods, these are all VERY basic, with a couple of (clearly marked) big exceptions at the end of the list. If you want an experience that's very close to vanilla, only better looking and enhanced in other ways, you can use this list. If you want crazy manga weapons or sex mods, you can check TESnexus yourself.

Ledsen said:
To find these mods, go to TESnexus or Planet Elder Scrolls, links to which you can find at the top of the guide. Again, remember: ALWAYS READ THE README. There you will find installation instructions as well as any special instructions you may need to follow. If you don't understand, just ask in this thread.

Patches - you should install all of these, provided you have all the content

-Unofficial Oblivion Patch 3.4.0
-Unofficial Official Mods Patch v15
-Unofficial Shivering Isles Patch 1.4

Textures - these are the heavy hitter graphics enhancers, together with OBGE which I described in the guide

-Qarls Texture Pack 3 Redimized (optimized version of the best world texture pack out there)
-Qarls Texture Pack 3 UOP 3.2.0 compatibility patch
-Bomret's Texture Pack: Shivering Isles (like Qarls, but for SI)
-All "improved" texture mods by this guy, I personally don't use the ones for cities though since I'm happy with the textures from QTP3
-Manglers Equipment n Ammo Textures
-4096X4096 Normal Map-2048X2048 Border Regions-LOD_OMOD (textures for "distant land", that is the ugly mess you see in the distance)
-Koldorns LOD Noise Replacer (complements the one above, I use medium strength)
-Book Jackets Oblivion (makes the books in the game beautiful)
-Mythic Animals and Mythic Creatures (better textures on all enemies and animals)

Other Graphics mods - body replacers and others

-HG EyeCandy Body (female body replacer)
-High Rez Skin Textures for HGEC (better textures for the above mod)
-Luchaire's HGEC Body Seam Reducer (fixes some seams in the HG EyeCandy model)
-All Natural (adds an awesome weather system, makes weather noticeable when inside and adds real light sources, that is lanterns, candles or torches, to all lights in the world. You may need to create a Bashed Patch for this, but probably not if you only use the mods in this list. Check the readme or ask me and I'll guide you through it)
-Animated Windows Lightning System (makes windows light up at night+adds smoke to the chimneys of houses at random intervals)
-LowPoly Grass+LowPoly Grass for SI (same page for both) (for better FPS outside)


Other mods

-Chase Camera Mod (fixes the stupid mouse delay in 3rd person)
-Darnified UI (essential for making the UI suitable for PC)
-Map Marker Overhaul (you can now place your own map markers)
-Storms & Sounds (what it sounds like, fully compatible with All Natural!)

Big changes - these mods change a lot more than the previous ones on the list, think carefully if you really want them or not!

-Unique Landscapes Compilation OMOD (a huuuge project where 20+ modders and counting each take a piece of the map and create beautiful environments instead of the boring, flat grassland that is normally there. They can also be downloaded separately)
-Oscuros Oblivion Overhaul 1.33+upgrade to 1.34b5 (same page for both) (One of the biggest mod ever made. Removes level scaling and loot scaling, hand-placing hundreds, if not thousands of pieces of loot and enemy encounters, adds hundreds of weapons and armor, many new quests etc. The author is now working at Obsidian on Fallout New Vegas. Read the readme. If you're going to install this, YOU WILL NEED TO INSTALL A FEW OTHER MODS AS WELL such as OMOBS, so make sure you use this guide to install OOO correctly. If you're using OBMM to install using omods, you should pick the correct link when prompted. The "BAIN" stuff is only for Wrye Bash users. OOO makes the game quite hard and is not recommended for your first playthrough. Playing at least a few hours of vanilla before deciding on OOO or no OOO is strongly recommended! Also, OOO has competitor's, such as Francesco's leveled creatures/items mod. There is a project called FCOM, which tries to combine OOO, Fran's and a number of other huge mods into one. If you haven't heard about FCOM, you should absolutely NOT try to install it, since you will fail gloriously. Just stick with one of the options.)
-Oblivion XP Update (Changes the leveling system to be similar to the one in Fallout 3, where you get XP which is then used to level up according to your tastes. I love this but YMMV, and there are many other mods that change the levelling system if you don't like this one. Make sure you get the "update" version and not the old one)

So that's it for now... if someone finds any errors or wants me to add anything, please say so! If someone wants to add links to my mod list, you may do so and I will post the modified list here. Also please ask any questions you want, share your mod setups, post beautiful mod pictures etc. Enjoy :)

Now, I'll give you a taste of some of the graphics you can expect after installing a few simple graphics mods. I understand that not everyone likes skimpy armors and doll-faced girls in their RPGs, but I chose these as examples because they show bodies and faces very well.

























 

V-Gief

Member
Would you mind posting what mods are included in that first picture with the Sylvanas-esque woman? Never played Oblivion, but seeing how seemingly flexible it is to mod piques my interest :)
 

EviLore

Expansive Ellipses
Staff Member
Nice guide. Modded Oblivion has nearly unlimited replayability. Folks who have only played vanilla are missing out.
 

Ledsen

Member
V-Gief said:
Would you mind posting what mods are included in that first picture with the Sylvanas-esque woman? Never played Oblivion, but seeing how seemingly flexible it is to mod piques my interest :)

I actually don't know :) I found the picture at TESNexus image share, you can go there and look in the comments.

EviLore said:
Nice guide. Modded Oblivion has nearly unlimited replayability. Folks who have only played vanilla are missing out.

Thanks! You're definitely right, although modding can suck you in and make you spend all your time modding instead of playing if you're not careful :lol
 

coopolon

Member
I cracked up at, "Do you like nude pathes? -->No-->Yes you do."

Great guide, a few months ago I tried doing a modded oblivion playthrough, but after spending over a day or so trying to get it all sorted out, I got pretty bored when actually trying to play Oblivion. But most of that was frustration with Wrye Bash.
 

subversus

I've done nothing with my life except eat and fap
thanks. I'm going through FO3 powered by Wanderer's patch and it feels like the game I dreamt about in 1997 (except for RPG part which is just icing on the cake in this open world Deux Ex game). Will try modded Oblivion after that.
 

thefil

Member
Ledsen said:
IThanks! You're definitely right, although modding can suck you in and make you spend all your time modding instead of playing if you're not careful :lol

I've modded my Oblivion to hell so many times... and then always quit quickly.
 

RickA238

Member
Thanks Ledsen, you read my mind. Just bought Oblivion for PC after having played vanilla on 360 4 years ago. I'm planning on using one of the non-scaling and texture mods, as well as any other particularly good mods I can find. This guide will help a ton, good work!
 

moojito

Member
Woo, nice thread! That picture with the house/tower in the rain has made me want to dig out my pc oblivion disc and give modding another go. This is the only game I've bought both the pc and 360 versions of, and I've been happy enough running about on the console til' now.
 

vermadas

Member
Thank you OP and thank you Razorskin for the awesome flowchart. I have only played through vanilla Oblivion on the 360, but I bought the game again during a Steam sale and intend to play through it again with mods.
 

Maxirugi

Member
I modded Oblivion quite a bit a while back but ended up uninstalling it for some reason. Now I'm tempted to start fresh!

How essential is it to have the Shivering Isles expansion? I never got round to buying it.
 

Darkman M

Member
Maxirugi said:
I modded Oblivion quite a bit a while back but ended up uninstalling it for some reason. Now I'm tempted to start fresh!

How essential is it to have the Shivering Isles expansion? I never got round to buying it.

Quite a few mod seem to require it now for some reason, but most of the big mods are good without it.
 

Minsc

Member
Incredible game with mods (the combat mods and better graphics and fixed loot/leveling make it so much better, not to mention the 10x variety of enemies, and basically rework of the entire game), I have a ~10GB 7-zip'd file with a 100 or so mods (including the FCOM: Convergence - Fran's + OOO + MMM) so whenever I need to install Oblivion I just unpack it and everything is in place, no installing/configuring mods or anything. Saves me days of downloading and setup, and I fear if I ever had to mod it again it wouldn't come out the same.

I also recommend checking out Octagon's mod pages for ideas he has a bunch of nice pics as well.

Maxirugi said:
I modded Oblivion quite a bit a while back but ended up uninstalling it for some reason. Now I'm tempted to start fresh!

How essential is it to have the Shivering Isles expansion? I never got round to buying it.

I'd say it's required for proper modding of the game, you'll have a much bigger headache without it imo.
 
V-Gief said:
Would you mind posting what mods are included in that first picture with the Sylvanas-esque woman?
I've had a trawl around and it seems the armour was never released, it's a mash up of various mods and I'm afraid that although I've seen half of them before I just can't remember the names. Sadly it's typical for good armour, weapons, faces, hair and items never to get released, the creators like showing them off but frequently don't want anyone else to have them.
 

Maxirugi

Member
Darkman M said:
Quite a few mod seem to require it now for some reason, but most of the big mods are good without it.

Minsc said:
I'd say it's required for proper modding of the game, you'll have a much bigger headache without it imo.

Cheers guys, I've just ordered it. Can't go too far wrong for £3.23 anyway :p
 

coopolon

Member
TheExodu5 said:
Oblivion XP, Qarl's Texture Pack, and OOO are the three most essential mods, IMO.

Does OOO add a bunch of new monsters and are really just recolored and resized versions of old monsters? I had it installed, but when reading the description when I saw that I found that idea pretty sad, but never really messed with it. I know OOO is supposed to be amazing though, just seems like such a cheapening addition.

Minsc said:
Incredible game with mods (the combat mods and better graphics and fixed loot/leveling make it so much better, not to mention the 10x variety of enemies, and basically rework of the entire game), I have a ~10GB 7-zip'd file with a 100 or so mods (including the FCOM: Convergence - Fran's + OOO + MMM) so whenever I need to install Oblivion I just unpack it and everything is in place, no installing/configuring mods or anything. Saves me days of downloading and setup, and I fear if I ever had to mod it again it wouldn't come out the same.

I also recommend checking out Octagon's mod pages for ideas he has a bunch of nice pics as well.

I wanted to try FCOM, but everyone says it is such a pain in the ass to get working, and it requires Wrye Bash to do it right?
 

JDS 1977

Banned
Wow, everything looks so badass in those screens. Sucks that no one seems to be able to recreate that look though? I despise the ugly characters in that game. Plus I get annoyed with the leveling thing and the boring dungeons.

I love finding all the dungeons but they never have any interesting loot or anything.
I'm probably expecting too much from it I guess.

I'm wanting to reinstall it and try out some of this stuff but I don't want insane difficulty, but i do want pretty everything, I want to outlevel the baddies as I gain xp, and have some more variety in discovery and dungeon exploring that involves some surprises and some worthwhile treasure and less boxes full of potatoes and other crap.
 
Does Fallout 3 have a good modding community?



I heard about a mod once for Oblivion which had a mission about trying to import Morrowind into Oblivion, with all the quests, creatures and items! I guess that was impossible.. Must have been a gigantic project!
 

Minsc

Member
JDS 1977 said:
Wow, everything looks so badass in those screens. Sucks that no one seems to be able to recreate that look though? I despise the ugly characters in that game. Plus I get annoyed with the leveling thing and the boring dungeons.

I love finding all the dungeons but they never have any interesting loot or anything.
I'm probably expecting too much from it I guess.

I'm wanting to reinstall it and try out some of this stuff but I don't want insane difficulty, but i do want pretty everything, I want to outlevel the baddies as I gain xp, and have some more variety in discovery and dungeon exploring that involves some surprises and some worthwhile treasure and less boxes full of potatoes and other crap.

That's pretty much what the mods do (hand place loot, fix it so baddies don't gain levels with you indefinitely, and put appropriate treasure in appropriate places, as well as create unique set items that are split across the game world). My game looks like the pics from the OP, from the colored trees, to the deer, to the sunsets, to the nicer looking NPCs and unique locations.

I don't know what you're talking about insane difficulty though, the game's very playable even with all the combat mods. Just get a few healing spells and levels and you're set.

Edit: There's even mods that put the enemies in factions so they will team up with each other and fight other enemies they encounter, and the wildlife mods create plenty more creatures besides deer, like wolves, etc that have their own AI and not everything just attacks on sight.
 

19Kilo

Member
Thanks for this thread! I've been wanting to give modded Oblivion a shot for quite a while now but didn't know where to even begin.
 

neoism

Member
EviLore said:
Nice guide. Modded Oblivion has nearly unlimited replayability. Folks who have only played vanilla are missing out.
Yeah I'm so glad I got a PC that could play anything. Can't wait for ES4.
 

NeoForte

Member
Awesome list! I have nearly all those mods~ I'm still curious about improved Hand to Hand mods for the game. OOO seems to improve it but I'm not sure how much strnger it is. Are there any mods that make it stronger?
 

JDS 1977

Banned
Minsc,


I was worried since a lot of people mention the overhaul mods like ooo or whatever adding a lot of difficulty to the game. So that was my concern there. I can always use the slider I guess anyway to adjust if I run into any problems.

So there is hand placed loot and sets? Awesome. My love for finding the dungeons and exploring them was always underwhelmed by my findings being old veggies and a barrel with a coin in it.
 

John

Member
I've tried going back and remodding Oblivion, but whenever I install just the base game, it immediately crashes at the opening ZeniMax splash screen. I've uninstalled it, deleted the Bethesda -> Oblivion folder, run CCleaner, and while nothing old will show up when I look at the Data Files or use the mod manager, it just crashes instantly.

What the hell?
 

ampere

Member
Really cool OP. When I played through Oblivion a few years back I had a really crap PC so I used 'Oldblivion' (basically made the game look worse so it would run on weaker machines) and the mod that fixing enemy level scaling.

I am really itching to try out the mods you suggest now that I have a powerful computer. Thanks OP :)
 

Darkman M

Member
John said:
I've tried going back and remodding Oblivion, but whenever I install just the base game, it immediately crashes at the opening ZeniMax splash screen. I've uninstalled it, deleted the Bethesda -> Oblivion folder, run CCleaner, and while nothing old will show up when I look at the Data Files or use the mod manager, it just crashes instantly.

What the hell?


Did you try deleting all the old save games and settings in My Documents/My Games/Oblivion?
 

John

Member
Darkman M said:
Did you try deleting all the old save games and settings in My Documents/My Games/Oblivion?
Didn't think of that; hm, could I just move them somewhere else? I want to keep some of them.
 

Darkman M

Member
John said:
Didn't think of that; hm, could I just move them somewhere else? I want to keep some of them.


Yeah try backing them up and moving them somewhere else then delete them in My Documents/My Games/Oblivion.
 

Ledsen

Member
Thanks for all the kind words! I really hope this thread will help people looking to improve their Oblivion experience, and open the eyes of people who didn't even know about the possibilities of modded Oblivion.

NeoForte said:
Awesome list! I have nearly all those mods~ I'm still curious about improved Hand to Hand mods for the game. OOO seems to improve it but I'm not sure how much strnger it is. Are there any mods that make it stronger?

Sorry, I meant to answer your PM. Sadly I don't know about any H2H mods :/

JDS 1977 said:
Minsc,


I was worried since a lot of people mention the overhaul mods like ooo or whatever adding a lot of difficulty to the game. So that was my concern there. I can always use the slider I guess anyway to adjust if I run into any problems.

So there is hand placed loot and sets? Awesome. My love for finding the dungeons and exploring them was always underwhelmed by my findings being old veggies and a barrel with a coin in it.

OOO isn't super difficult or anything, it's just that the more or less fixed enemy levels make random exploration a lot more dangerous than vanilla. You'll have to stick to dungeons close to the cities at the beginning, and as you grow stronger you'll be able to explore the more dangerous areas. You'll also have to be a lot more careful with your character build since you'll need to pick skills that will be useful to you in combat or you will die quite a lot. But a big part of the fun of OOO is that sense of dread when you enter a new dungeon. What horrors will you find as you descend deeper into the darkness? What completely awesome, carefully hand-placed, in no way randomly generated reward (there are hundreds of these, remember this mod has been in constant development for four years) will you find if you manage to survive in a way too difficult dungeon against all odds? Also like you said, you can always chicken out and just lower the slider. There's no shame in wanting to have more fun :)

Also a tip: Marksman and Stealth are a great help. Sneak Attacks are more powerful in OOO and bows are always a great way to keep your distance from extremely powerful foes. I've also heard people say that Conjuration is helpful for keeping enemies distracted with summoned creatures, and Alteration for the powerful Shield spells.
 

totoro'd

Member
Awesome, thanks for this Ledsen you're so knowledgeable! I've been following your posts in the official Oblivion thread as my bf gave me Oblivion awhile ago and I just installed it yesterday :lol

*adds to subscription*
 

John

Member
Ledsen said:
OOO isn't super difficult or anything, it's just that the more or less fixed enemy levels make random exploration a lot more dangerous than vanilla. You'll have to stick to dungeons close to the cities at the beginning, and as you grow stronger you'll be able to explore the more dangerous areas. You'll also have to be a lot more careful with your character build since you'll need to pick skills that will be useful to you in combat or you will die quite a lot. But a big part of the fun of OOO is that sense of dread when you enter a new dungeon. What horrors will you find as you descend deeper into the darkness? What completely awesome, carefully hand-placed, in no way randomly generated reward (there are hundreds of these, remember this mod has been in constant development for four years) will you find if you manage to survive in a way too difficult dungeon against all odds? Also like you said, you can always chicken out and just lower the slider. There's no shame in wanting to have more fun :)

Also a tip: Marksman and Stealth are a great help. Sneak Attacks are more powerful in OOO and bows are always a great way to keep your distance from extremely powerful foes. I've also heard people say that Conjuration is helpful for keeping enemies distracted with summoned creatures, and Alteration for the powerful Shield spells.

Does OOO rebalance bows? They were damn near useless in vanilla and I want to try a thief build, and I want to know whether or not I should use any bow modifier mods.
 

rexor0717

Member
I just got a new PC, so I'm definitely interested in going through Oblivion again. I only played vanilla, but its one of my favorite games.
 
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