Housecarls Are Tanks by elite403
Skyrim » Companions - Other
Added: 06/04/2013 - 06:04PM
Updated: 30/10/2013 - 03:03PM

74 Endorsements

1.5 Latest version

1,628 Unique D/Ls

2,357 Total D/Ls

19,035 Total Views

Uploaded by elite403


Last updated at 15:03, 30 Oct 2013 Uploaded at 18:04, 6 Apr 2013

Skyrim v1.9.xx. Not tested with any version prior to this.

If you want to be a tank yourself
Then you need "I Am A Tank Too!" mod instead.

"... I am sworn to protect you, and all you own, with my life."
- Housecarl

"... I am swoooooorrrrrn to carry your burdens"
- Lydia

What This Mod Does
Makes your housecarls pull enemies away from you during combat

Due to a stupid mistake on my part, Hearthfires Add-on file v1.1 was missing an important script in the BSA file. So I have uploaded an update v1.11 to include this script.

Just re-download and apply the Add-on file if you have v1.1.

My most profuse apologies!

What's New in v1.5
- Added 4 city-emblem shields for housecarls, with a small enchantment, the same one as the Shield of Solitude at the lowest level (10% Magic resist, 15% block). The shields are temperable with the appropriate perks.
-- Housecarl Shield of Whiterun
-- Housecarl Shield of Riften
-- Housecarl Shield of Markarth
-- Housecarl Shield of Windhelm

Jordis doesn't get a Shield of Solitude because the player gets one if the Wolf Queen Potema questline is completed, and the enchantment on the shield will be levelled (might be better).

If you have the Hearthfires Add-On file, Gregor gets a Housecarl Shield Of Dawnstar too. Rayya doesn't need one.

Again, NONE OF THE HOUSECARLS ARE MODIFIED in any way in the CK, hence there will be NO CONFLICTS with any housecarl mods you may be running. The shields are given to the housecarls via scripts, hence totally not modifying the housecarls. It's the same as if you traded the shields to them yourself.

- Added "Housecarl - Help Me" call for help power/spell when you're in trouble and need your housecarl(s) to come save your skin during combat. Cast it with the shout key ("Z").

My PDF file to reconfigure your own tanks is still valid for this version. Use it only on main file.

Every housecarl you talk to will say they are "sworn to protect you, and all you own, with my life".

But do they??

Now they do! (or at least will try to)

The thing that really irked me was that while they are supposed to be my bodyguards, they are "just another follower" or "just another warrior" that fight basically the same way as others. When I'm getting my behind pounded on by an enemy, they'll be happily ignoring my pain and continue fighting whoever they were fighting.

This is a very simple mod, essentially a cut-down version from my other mod "Severin Manor Guard" that only focuses on the protect-the-player aspect. This is how I imagined housecarls should have been like in the first place in vanilla Skyrim.

Check the video tab above for an example gameplay showing the tanks in action

What it does in detail
In a sentence, it makes your housecarls draw aggro away from you, the player, during combat.

The 5 housecarls in vanilla Skyrim are automatically "given" a new ability - Taunt Enemy. As long as you have at least 1 of them following you, you have a tank. You don't even have to tell them what to do, they will just do it. IT'S THEIR JOB!

If you happen to have more than 1 housecarl following you at the same time, the "main tank" is chosen in this order:

Argis -> Iona -> Calder -> Lydia -> Jordis

Thus, there will only be ONE tank. This order is chosen based on how I perceive the aggressiveness of each of the housecarls that are given to you, and not by any real skill limitations of any of them. In the Creation Kit, all of them are equal - have exactly the same skills, aggressiveness etc.

That also means, if you happen to accidentally kill your tank, the next tank in line will automatically step up to take the job. Eg you have Argis and Jordis with you, and if Argis died, Jordis will become tank automatically.

And, if you don't have any housecarls following you, this mod will just sit quietly in the background and do nothing till you do.

Hearthfires Add-On File
If you have the Hearthfire Add-on, then the order is:

Argis -> Iona- > Calder- > Lydia -> Jordis -> Gregor -> Rayya

Sorry can't insert Gregor or Rayya in-between anybody because it's an ADD-ON file, not part of the main file. Thus processing for them will always be after the main file.

Valdimar not in the list because he is a mage, not a tank.

Q & A
Q. How come my housecarl doesn't help me? I'm dying here!
A. They must first be able to see the attacker. If they can't see the enemy they can't taunt! Or, they have just taunted and can't taunt again for 20 seconds (taunt-spam control). I mean, you DO need to take a breath before you hurl abuse at your enemies, don't you?
v1.2 - Also, check to make sure you have NOT told your housecarls to stop taunting.

Q. Ok they taunted 1 enemy away, but I've still got 2 more on me! Halp!
A. The AOE taunt has an area, and maybe these 2 guys are out of the area. Or, they just don't like you more than your housecarl :) It's not a 100% guarantee in the first place. Skyrim engine itself has other checks for aggro and such. However, it should work MOST of the time. Turn on logging to see it in action in your Papyrus logs.
v1.2 - Check to make sure you have NOT told them to do single-target taunts if you want them to do AOE taunts instead.

Q. Why is there only 1 tank? I want more! I have all 5 housecarls following me right now!
A. With the new AOE taunt, you don't need more than 1 tank, seriously. A single taunt can grab 10 or more enemies if they're all within 20ft of the original attacker. Plus, having 5 tanks taunting will confuse the heck out of the enemies :p

Q. I have a weird problem, but the logs don't show anything!
A. Turn on the logs by going to the console and typing "set elite_HousecarlDebugLog to 1"

Should be compatible with EVERYTHING. I did not modify any of the housecarls. You can have mods that alter their skills (Specialized Followers, Better Followers etc), or change their appearance (makeovers, new hairstyles etc), this mod does NOT conflict with those.

In much the same way as how mods such as "Convenient Horses" control your followers, this mod does the same thing. It makes your housecarls taunt, just like how Convenient Horses make your followers mount and dismount horses. Thus, no housecarls were harmed in the making of this mod :)

This mod is 99% script, and less than 500 lines at that. Nothing is altered in vanilla Skyrim or the actual housecarls themselves.

Special Notes about "No Death" mods
Mods that sets the player Essential (eg "No Death" mods), while not conflicting directly with this mod, alters the state which this mod works.

As long as the player is set as "Essential", this mod will enter "brawl" state. That means your housecarls will think you're in a brawl and won't bother to taunt the enemies off you and thus, this mod will be inactive. Followers and housecarls will still fight and do everything else normally, but they won't taunt.

Recommended but not required
- SKSE latest version
- Severin Manor Guard, my other mod, if you also have Dragonborn DLC. That mod has a fuller feature set for protecting other NPCs, attacking specific targets etc. I am running with both mods right now :)

NMM - usual method.
Manual - Drag and drop the files into your SkyrimData folder

Just make sure you're out of combat (so that the scripts aren't still running) for about a minute or two, then perform the uninstall. The scripts aren't "always running" but they do run during combat.

NMM - usual method
Manual - Uncheck from mod load order, delete the files.

Common-sense courtesy apply. Please contact me before you use any parts of this mod for your own work. I'm a very friendly and approachable guy, so I'm very likely to agree :)

Credit and Thanks
Thanks to Mujuro, author of the fantastic healer companion mod Cerwiden for modding/Papyrus scripting advice.