Last updated at 3:39, 30 Dec 2013 Uploaded at 13:23, 8 Sep 2012
For mods that make Skyrim LOOK more realistic, use STEP - Skyrim Total Enhancement Project.
For mods that make Skyrim PLAY more realistic, use GEMS - Gameplay Enhancement Mods for Skyrim
GEMS (Gameplay Enhancement Mods for Skyrim) is a 1-page, quick-reference catalog of 800+ lore-friendly mods on the NEXUS and the Steam Workshop that enhance gameplay. I sifted through thousands of hi-res textures, ENB configurations, Breezehome basements and Lydia makeovers to find those rare GEMS that improve how the game works - combat, magic, archery, sneaking, lockpicking, looting, lighting, traps, crafting, cooking, alchemy, enchanting, traveling, character stats, perks, skills, leveling rates, carry weights, and more... (over 50 categories). Only mods that add realism, immersion or new roleplaying opportunities are considered GEMS.
By grouping mods with similar purpose or function together into one central index, it will be faster and easier for people to choose the best collection of mods to achieve their personal preference of gameplay and realism.
I also hope this list will shine a brighter light on the many great gameplay mods that people have either missed or overlooked. I've spent countless hours looking through mods and I'm STILL finding GEMS that I never knew existed. Below are just a few examples:
- Travel by boat...in real-time!
- Rent an apartment
- Sell your house
- Dodge incoming attacks...in realtime!
- Recover from a disease by eating chicken soup and resting in bed
- Grab a hammer and temper your weapon at the workbench...in realtime!
- Earn money at a tavern playing music with your companions
- Heal your wounds with bandages
- and hundreds more....
Enjoy the list...and PLEASE ENDORSE if you appreciate the effort and would like me to continue updating it. :)
- Over 800 gameplay-enhancing mods on 1 page organized into 10 categories and 50+ subcategories
- Automatic updates (only download once!) ;)
- YouTube links begin playback exactly where the mod review begins
- Links to each mod's page on the Nexus or Steam Workshop (Steam = blue links)
- A concise but detailed description of what each mod does
How many mods are in GEMS?
Over 800 mods in 50+ categories...and growing.
Does GEMS include any of the following mods?
...Hi-Res Textures or graphics enhancements? No
...NPC makeovers? No
...New Quests? No
...Aliens, robots, guns, talking mudcrabs or superhero costumes? No
Does GEMS contain any mods for DawnGuard, Hearthfire or Dragonborn?
Very few. I do plan to add a new page for DLC mods.
Does GEMS include an instruction guide like STEP explaining which compatible mods to install to create a more realistic game with good stability?
No. GEMS does not recommend one mod over another but it does group mods with similar purpose or function together so that others will be able to create mod compilation guides more easily. A future update may include links to "play-tested mod packs".
Does GEMS indicate which mods are compatible or conflict with other mods?
No but this is a feature I would like to add in the future...
Did you find these mods on the Nexus or the Steam Workshop?
Do the mods link to the Nexus or the Steam Workshop?
All mods link to the Nexus unless the mod is only available on the Steam Workshop.
Where did you get the awesome artwork in the header and footer of your website?
It's from a great mod called "Skyrim concept art wallpaper HD" by dezzz. ("Thanks dezzz!") Check it out!
Special thanks to all of the modders who have made a great game better, to all of the people who make such great video reviews, to Bethesda for creating such a kick ass game, and to the folks at Nexus for supporting the modding community.
Below is a screenshot showing all of the subcategories. (I made the categories and subcategories expandable and collapsible for easier browsing)