Familiar Faces by Verteiron
Skyrim » Followers
Added: 28/06/2014 - 10:57PM
Updated: 17/08/2014 - 01:25AM

3,370 Endorsements

1.0.5 Latest version

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Uploaded by verteiron


Last updated at 1:25, 17 Aug 2014 Uploaded at 22:57, 28 Jun 2014

Special thanks to Brodual for getting this video done on a short deadline!

  • Shouts can now be disabled via MCM.
  • Added missing translation files (in English, translations are welcome).

  • Race, Armor, Weapon, Perk, and Spell dependencies are now written to the character save file. Files without dependency info will be automatically upgraded to include it the next time they are loaded. Dependency data is not yet read but this will support future features.
  • Perks will now be loaded even if some are missing due to missing dependencies.
  • A missing Race (for example because of missing plugins/mods) will now no longer hang the character loading process. Characters with an invalid Race will be set up as Nords, but will be updated to the correct Race if the required mods are later installed.
  • If a Hangout is use, you will now receive a message telling you who is using it. Hangouts will receive an overhaul in the first feature release.
  • NINode scale sizes are now saved with the character file. This allows for saving and loading of RaceMenu's extra sliders for things like Biceps. All NINodes provided by the vanilla skeletons and XPMS are checked. You must resave your characters for this to take effect.
  • In combination with RaceMenu 2.8.3, experimental support for ECE. See the section under Compatibility below.

Bring your characters together at last! Visit the Shrine of Heroes, where you can meet your Dragonborn from past play-throughs, create a monument to their achievements, and even bring them to your world as faithful allies... or worthy opponents! Whether you're a role-player trying to build a coherent story of Skyrim or you just think it'd be cool to use your other players as followers, Familiar Faces is the only way to do it!

What Familiar Faces does

Familiar Faces allows you to create persistent copies of your character that exist independently of saved games. You can then visit those characters from any of your saved games; send them into the world to interact with, recruit as followers, marry or kill.

What gets saved
  • Character's appearance. The imported character should look exactly like their original self. All morphs, skins, and replacers supported by RaceMenu are supported by Familiar Faces because they use the same system. This includes custom colors, body tattoos, glowing marks and other overlay-specific features.
  • Imported characters will retain all equipped armor, including names and customizations if any are present, as well as all custom weapons both equipped and in inventory. This includes weapons and armor provided by other mods. Items that are un-droppable due to being Quest objects may not be copied.
  • All ammunition in inventory, including crossbow bolts and ammunition provided by other mods.
  • Imported characters will have most of their spell list available, provided the spells are from the vanilla game or official DLC. The spell list can be restricted by school through MCM.
  • Imported characters retain and will use all Shouts they learned, though the list is trimmed slightly for compatibility purposes and may be trimmed further in a future release. Some shouts, such as Call Storm, do not work properly when used by followers.
  • Imported characters retain all perks they have learned. Some perks may have their effects disabled for compatibility purposes, but most will function as intended.

What won't get saved
  • Gold and other items, such as potions and scrolls. Support for potions, possibly even custom potions, is planned in a future release. Most other inventory items can be transferred (from a technical standpoint) but there are good reasons not to do so. Full inventory transfer may become available as an option if there is demand.
  • Certain perks and shouts are either ignored or disabled for compatibility reasons. So far these include: Slow Time, Kyne's Peace, and the dragon-summoning Shouts. Perks that improve decapitation odds are disabled when the imported character is fighting the player, since decapitating the player causes a crash. Perks that do player-specific things like slow time while blocking are imported, but ignored by the game.
  • Spells added by unofficial DLCs/mods. Sorry, as a spell-writer and collector, this one pains me too, but it was necessary. A huge number of non-vanilla spells are designed only for use by the player, or are abilities added and used by other mods that are only intended for use on the player. Adding these to NPCs caused a huge number of problems. Support for at least some additional spells will be added in a future update, probably on a case-by-case basis.

What Familiar Faces does not do
  • Familiar Faces is not a follower manager. It is intended to be used alongside another follower manager such as EFF.
  • Familiar Faces is not a custom follower generator, although it can certainly be used that way. Future features are going to be aimed at improving the playability and accuracy of character duplication, not at making character design faster, easier, or more complete.
  • Familiar Faces is not a method for transferring items between save games. Again, it can be used this way (by pickpocketing or trading with your imported characters) but it will never be the mod's first priority. I do, however, plan to add a shared chest of some kind that will allow you to transfer additional customized items between saves.

  • Latest version of Skyrim - Dawnguard and Dragonborn are supported but not required.
  • SKSE 1.7.0 or higher - Not included. Download and install if you're not using it already. Earlier versions WILL NOT WORK. The mod will notice if SKSE is missing and will shut down.
  • SkyUI 4.1 or higher - Required for MCM.
  • JContainers 0.67.4 or higher - This is an SKSE plugin that is packaged with this testing edition.
  • RaceMenu 2.8.3 - More specifically, the chargen.dll SKSE plugin distributed with that version. RaceMenu itself does not have to be installed, just the chargen.dll SKSE plugin. You should use RaceMenu, though.

  • Extensible Follower Framework (preferably 4.0-beta, though 3.5.6 works fine) - Highly recommended for follower management. EFF is the only follower manager that Familiar Faces explicitly supports. Though others do not cause any major issues and you are free to use them, UFO has not been tested, and AFT has be found to cause some problems with voicetype, perk and spell assignment. See the Compatibility section.
  • Auto Unequip Ammo - Recommended to help your imported followers (who frequently have several types of ammo on them) pick the best ammo for their current weapon.


This list is not exhaustive. Generally, if a mod doesn't affect a character's look or skill set, it will probably be fine.

Known to work
  • Dawnguard and Dragonborn are supported but not required.
  • Extended Follower Framework by Expired.
  • Mods that add NIOverride overlays (body tattoos, scars, glowing face tattoos, etc) to RaceMenu are fully supported, though the overlays may not always appear on the Shrine statue. They will appear on your character once they are sent into the world.
  • Some ENB setups may interfere with ImageSpaceOverrides, meaning some animations that normally fade to white to hide animation glitches will not do so. This does not cause anything other than cosmetic problems, and only during the save animation in the Shrine.
  • Sound effect overhauls, visual overhauls.
  • Mods that add weapons and armor, including craftable ones. The mod must remain installed for the imported items to appear; if it is removed, the items it provides will be removed as usual and ignored by Familiar Faces.
  • Body replacer mods such CBBE are fine, as long as they are compatible with RaceMenu.
  • Follower Commentary Overhaul, as long as you assign your follower a Follower voicetype via MCM. Thanks to SunCe2112 for testing this for me!

Works with caveats
  • NEW: Enhanced Character Edit now has experimental support, thanks to some wizardry by Expired. This requires RaceMenu 2.8.3 or higher be installed along with ECE. If ECE is found in the current load order, the character's head mesh will be written to a NIF located in Data/Meshes/CharGen/Exported/. If a NIF is found for a character at load time, LoadExternalCharacter will be used to apply it to the actor's appearance. This will copy the NIF to This file will be copied to Meshes/Actors/Character/FaceGenData/FaceGeom/vMYC_MeetYourCharacters.esp/. It may be necessary to quicksave/quickload before the head appearance will update.
  • NEW: Dual Sheath Redux seems to work okay but the sheathed sword object glitches out on saved characters. This looks fixable, though, so hopefully I can take care of it soon.
  • UPDATED: Custom races work fine, but the race mod and skeleton mod they require must be installed on the loading game. That is, Races built on XPMS require XPMS be installed, etc. Ningheim have been tested as working, as have Drakian and several others. If you use or are the author of a popular custom race mod, PM me or create an issue over on the Github page to let me know if your race is not working properly under these circumstances.
  • UPDATED: Perks provided by overhaul mods such as SkyRE should be imported with all attributes intact, but may not function as originally intended. I have mixed compatibility reports regarding SkyRE, with some people saying it causes majors problems when entering the Shrine and others saying it works fine. Use Familiar Faces and SkyRE together at your own risk!
  • Face replacer mods should work as long as they are compatible with RaceMenu, but characters will probably not load properly if the face-altering mod is removed. Horrific monstrosities may result.
  • AFT seems to be causing problems for some people when it comes to selecting VoiceTypes for characters, as well as clobbering Perk lists and Spells. This will be addressed at some point, AFT compatibility is a goal for 1.1.0.
  • HDT body mods should work but have not been tested.

Known to NOT work
  • HDT physics hair does not work. Or maybe it does. Reports are mixed but generally negative. At least one tester reports it works for them as long as the player does not have HDT hair at the same time.


You can use NMM or MO (see next section) to install the mod from the 7z file. Other managers such as Wrye have not been tested, but should work. You can install manually simply by extracting the 7z file to the Skyrim/Data directory.

Mod Organizer notes

Familiar Faces works with Mod Organizer, but files that get created during gameplay will be written to the overwrite directory instead of to FF's mod tree. This is normal, but causes MO show a warning. These files can be safely moved into the Familiar Faces tree after you exit Skyrim, or they can be left in Overwrite.


Make sure all followers provided by Familiar Faces are dismissed from your service before removing the mod.

If you plan to reinstall the mod, leave the Data/vMYC directory intact or at least back it up. It contains all the saved character data. Otherwise...

If you used NMM to install, uninstallation will work but may leave files behind in Data/vYMC. If you used MO, files may remain in your overwrite directory in the same location.

Search for and remove ALL files and folders in Skyrim/Data that begin with "vMYC". The only other files remaining after that will be ffutils.*, which can also be searched for and removed.

Getting started

WARNING! Do not use the portal stone while you are inside the shrine! You'll end up stuck there and unable to return to your previous location! If you've already done this, use cow tamriel 2 0 at the console to return to Tamriel. This will be fixed in a patch release in the very near future!

Shortly after starting or loading a game, you should receive a Portal Stone in your inventory. You can use that stone from your Inventory (under misc items, where you find your dragon bones and other miscellaneous stuff) to warp to the Shrine of Heroes. Activate the "Tome of the Dragonborn" in front of an empty alcove to save your character there. The save process will take some time; exactly how long depends on how many skills, perks, and inventory items your character has. It should never take longer than a minute of real time and should rarely take longer than 30 seconds unless you have a huge number of inventory items.

Once your character has been saved in an alcove, a statue of them will appear, possibly surrounded by various trophies and banners. These reflect your progress and which paths you chose in your adventures through Skyrim. An index of the available trophies can be found here.

Meeting your character

Now for the fun part! Load up a saved game on a different character. As before, use the Portal Stone (there may be a delay before it gets placed in your inventory, just wait). The first time you visit the Shrine, your other saved characters will be loaded in. This process may take some time, depending on the number of characters, how many custom items they have, etc. Opening the Tome of your saved character will send them into the world as NPCs. They will have a default spawn point based on their own adventures which can be changed from MCM.

Upon locating and talking to your imported character, you should be able to recruit them as followers (see VoiceTypes below). You can also make them a marriageable lover or your worst enemy via MCM.


All configuration is done via MCM. Not all options get applied instantly and some require a refresh of your character, which will cause them to flicker in and out of sight, sometimes several times. This is normal.

Character Options

In the MCM panel, you can change some aspects of your characters' behavior as well as how they level. Under Character Options, first choose the character you want to edit. This will bring up their saved info and the following options:
  • Track this Character - This creates a quest marker under Miscellaneous that you can toggle to help find your characters once they're imported into the world.
  • VoiceType - This changes the voice your character uses. This is more important than you might think: VoiceTypes affect whether you can recruit, marry, or adopt children with your imported character. If you want to recruit your character, you will need to give them a VoiceType labeled as "Follower". If you are using EFF or another Follower manager, you can switch their VoiceType back to their original one after recruiting, otherwise you will need to keep them on the Follower VT to access the various Follower commands via conversation. AFT users: I have some problem reports regarding AFT and the Voicetype settings. Some people say you have to change the VoiceType, then travel to a different cell before it will take effect. I'm not sure why this is and it is the subject of continued testing. For now, if your follower manager allows you to switch voicetypes, you might be better off using it instead of the Familiar Faces panel.
  • Class - Changing a character's Class determines how their skill points are distributed in the level scaling process. By default, your imported characters will attempt to match their original skill set as closely as possible within the constraints of their current level. This may result in bizarre or unworkable setups, though (i.e. many points in Smithing and Enchanting and few points in combat skills, etc). The other Class listings are the same used by the original game and influence combat style as well as weapon preferences. In general, unless your receiving character is very close to the same level as the imported one, you'll want to use one of these presets. Experiment to find the Class best suited for your character!
  • Hangout - This controls where your character will spawn in the world, as well as where they will go if dismissed from your service. At the bottom of the list are custom locations. See the section on using those below.
  • Magic - By default, Familiar Faces imports only the spells for which the saved character has applicable perks. This may not be what you want, though; many a magic-shunning warrior has resorted to a quick healing spell in a pinch! Here you can disable the default behavior and manually select which schools of magic the character will have access to. Note that this actually adds and removes spells from the character's list, and will probably overwrite any manually added spells taught to the follower by other mods. This will be fixed in the very near future. If you want to completely disable magic for your character, just uncheck all the options in this category.

Shrine of Heroes

Here you can rearrange the order in which characters appear in the Shrine of Heroes. You can also use this to clear out some Shrines if you have more than 12 characters to save. Remember that characters are not deleted when their Shrine is emptied, so it is possible to have more than 12 saved characters. Only 12 can be present in the world at one time, though.


The following are not bugs (or are unavoidable) and should not be reported:
  • The game will hiccup or hang for a moment when entering the Shrine. This is a side effect of loading the CharGen data and can't be avoided. It should only occur when the character models are loading or when changing a character's Class via MCM.
  • Characters will vanish for a second when their Class is changed via MCM. This is normal.
  • Saved characters will quickly vanish and reappear after you load your game. Prior to disappearing they may be headless or have distorted faces. This is not normal, but on Familiar Faces it is.
  • Some characters in the shrines may be in mannequin poses, others may not. This is due to how Skyrim handles loading models and can't be avoided easily.
  • The Portal Stone may take nearly a minute to appear in your inventory. This is normal and will vary based on how many characters you have saved in the Shrine.
  • If your character is a Vampire/Vampire Lord, they may suffer from the gray-face bug. This is an issue with Dawnguard vampires and probably can't be fixed without making the mod dependent on Dawnguard.esm. If I can find no other way to fix this I will release a Dawnguard-dependent version.

  • Q: I'm getting a warning about SKSE/JContainers/CharGen!
  • A: You're missing some dependencies. See the requirements list up above and make sure you have the newest versions of each one installed. You can also try using the "plus Deps" version on the download page, but this is intended ONLY for people who are not already using RaceMenu. To keep everything running smoothly, install all the required mods separately.

  • Q: SKSE 1.7 is labeled Alpha, is it safe? Is it compatible with my other mods? Why is it required?
  • A: Yes. This mod was developed entirely using 1.7, and uses a huge amount of SKSE calls. SKSE 1.7 is already very widely adopted and heavily used. It is entirely backward-compatible with 1.6: If you have mods that require 1.6, they will work with 1.7. As for why, the simplest answer is that it provides the features that make Familiar Faces possible. Without 1.7 this mod would not exist.

  • Q: Why isn't the stone appearing in my inventory?
  • A: Either the mod isn't installed properly or your scripting engine is incredibly bogged down by other mods. Install the USKP, put the ClearInvalidRegistrations line in SKSE.ini, try starting a from a clean save or even a new game and see what happens.

  • Q: Everything seems to be working but my characters aren't getting saved!
  • A: Make sure the Data/vMYC folder got created during the installation and that you have permission to write to it.

  • Q: The save animation never finishes/alcove stays lit forever!
  • A: Check the above question for some first steps. There are a few reasons this could be happening, but the most likely culprit is a bogged-down script engine from other badly-behaved mods. Try enabling the ClearInvalidRegistrations feature of SKSE, or start from your clean save and see if it works there. If these don't work, send me your Papyrus log (you can use Pastebin and PM me the link) and I'll see what I can figure out for you. This could also happen if you have thousands and thousands of inventory items and spend all your time in god mode, in which case if you wait long enough, it should finish, but it shouldn't take more than a couple of minutes.

  • Q: I'm stuck in the Shrine with collision disabled!
  • A: See the previous answer. Basically your scripting engine is too bogged down to function properly. If nothing else works, you can try adding the following lines to your Skyrim.ini in the Papyrus section:
  • fUpdateBudgetMS=800

    Note that this basically papering over the problem rather than actually fixing it, but it may allow you to continue using your current save until you can fix it for good.

  • Q: My game crashed and I'm pretty sure this mod is the culprit!
  • A: Sorry to hear that. Crashes were a problem early on but have not been reported by any testers in the versions leading up to public release. The only remaining one I am aware of is a very rare crash when first entering the Shrine which is caused by the Sovngarde portal mesh. Get me the Papyrus log and the details surrounding the crash and I'll check it out.

  • Q: Can I get my character files out and send them to people?
  • A: You can! The character file will be named after your character and be located in Skyrim/Data/vMYC. You will also need the RaceMenu slot file, located in Skyrim/Data/SKSE/Plugins/Chargen/Exported, and the texture, located in Skyrim/Data/Textures/CharGen/Exported. Copy these three files to another system in the same location, and your character will become available for selection in the Shrine of Heroes MCM page, as well importable by RaceMenu

  • Q: What is this trophy/banner/symbol in my character's alcove?
  • A: An index of the available trophies can be found here.

  • Q: I'm getting a warning about SKSE/JContainers/CharGen!
  • A: You're missing some dependencies. See the requirements list up above and make sure you have the newest versions of each one installed.

Special thanks to...
  • Syrcaid - My wifey, both for providing a decent name for this mod and putting up with being a mod widow. Also for the neat face graphic used in the logo.
  • Expired - Without whom this mod would not have been even remotely possible. You need to go and download/endorse ALL his mods.
  • SilverIce - For the incredible JContainers plugin, which provides a powerful and much-needed data storage mechanism to Papyrus.
  • Brodual - For getting a video out in an impossibly short time.
  • Gopher - For a very positive Twitch review that got me a lot of new downloaders.

For making sure the mod actually ran on computers other than my own.
  • Cad'ika Orade - Also the catalyst for the mod's creation
  • BLourenco
  • SunCe2112 - For extra work in testing AFT and Dual Sheath Redux.
  • BerenOneHanded
  • Cryptoss
  • Terrorfox1234
  • DaveC
  • Terrorfox1234

Older changelog
  • Character items, armor, and weapons will now be updated properly if their Shrine save is updated. This may cause them to flicker when loaded but should be fine otherwise. Items you have given your imported characters should remain with them unchanged.
  • Fix for getting stuck floating in the air while saving.
  • Destroying the Tome now actually frees up the Shrine. If you delete the last character in the Alcove, the Tome will still be named after them, but you can still use it.
  • Related to the previous, fixed every Tome saying "You've already written down your story."
  • Gracefully handle deletion of the the _shrineofheroes.json file. If your Shrine has become unusable, deleting the data file will cause it to be completely emptied without deleting your character data. You can then use MCM to refill it without having to re-save everybody manually.
  • Fixed a bug where the Portal Stone would strand you in the Shrine forever if used there.
  • Thanks to an update to RaceMenu (2.8.2), Vampire characters should now be saved without a gray face, though you'll need to update their Tome to fix their appearance.
  • Fixed trophies remaining in the shrine after character removal.

  • Required for compatibility with RaceMenu 2.8.1.
  • GREATLY improved character appearance loading. Characters now load faster, more reliably, and flicker-free thanks to a change in the CharGen.dll plugin. No more ElderRace followers! RaceMenu 2.8.1 is required for this new system to take effect. Familiar Faces 1.0.2 is backward compatible with RM 2.8.0 but it is recommended that you upgrade to take advantage of the new system. After upgrading RaceMenu, it may be necessary to re-save Khajiit and Argonian characters in the Shrine to avoid a distorted appearance. Or it may not, results seem to be mixed.
  • Support for weapons with up to 8 enchantment effects (where are you people GETTING these?)
  • EFF compatibility moved to a quest to prevent issues with having the module attached to actors when EFF is installed and removed.
  • Additional checks on some translations in the Shrine that could cause a CTD in rare circumstances.
  • Fix for MCM Character Tracking box still not responding properly.

  • Expired has updated RaceMenu to version 2.8.0. It is very strongly recommended that you upgrade to 2.8.0 ASAP to ensure compatibility with Familiar Faces.
  • Fixed issue that caused imported characters to get stuck as ElderRace if they took too long to load. If you are still getting this bug, either your system is very slow to load or you don't have the right version of RaceMenu/Chargen.dll installed.
  • Fixed "Character Tracking" option not working in MCM.
  • Fixed VoiceTypes being reset after a save/load.
  • Removed a ton of debug messages that were spamming the Papyrus file.
  • Fixed a potential (but unlikely) CTD that could occur while applying perks or shouts.