Fallout 3

About this mod

A first playthrough friendly modding guide, that focuses on covering the entire game with all kinds of improvements, be it graphical improvements, gameplay enhancements or stability tweaks, while still keeping the core experience mostly intact.

Requirements
Permissions and credits
Update 1.6.2

Known problems (bugs, glitches, etc) that have been adressed and their solutions were added to the guide.

Known problems that haven't been fully adressed (to be investigated/partial solution/no solution) are down below in the description!


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Changelog:

Update 1.6.2:
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Update 1.6.1:
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Update 1.6:
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Update 1.5.1:
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Update 1.5:
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Update 1.4:
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Update 1.3:
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Update 1.2:
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Update 1.1:
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This is an extensive, comprehensive and polished modding guide for Fallout 3. I've been working on it for years now (I started it on January 2018).

This guide:

-Is the result of gathering and organization of information from many sources, such as blogs, websites, videos, Reddit posts and other guides as well. I searched throughout the internet and tried to combine everything into a definitive modding guide.

-Is a WIP (Work In Progress) for as long as i keep interest in Fallout 3. Mods might be added, updated or removed at any point. And many might be replaced due to better alternatives (specially bugfixes).

-Should be first playthrough friendly, as it focuses on covering the entire game with all kinds of improvements, be it texture mods or gameplay tweaks, while still keeping the core experience mostly intact.

-Doesn't include mods that change gameplay features drastically or add completely new content, with a few exceptions and quality of life mods, such as RH_Ironsights and Weapon Mod Kits.

-Was extensively tested. I analyzed each mod, tried to increase and ensure compatibility as much as possible, avoiding bugs, conflicts, crashes and even creating or discovering a few fixes myself. The game should be pretty stable after all of the modding if you read with attention and follow everything carefully.

I'm always open to corrections and suggestions. Feel free to talk to me anytime on the comments section if you need help with something as well.

And please don't forget to endorse if you feel like this guide has benefited you!

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Known problems and their (possible) solutions (Yet to be investigated/tested/adressed. Any help is appreciated):

1 ---> Loud bursts of static every once in a while - Reported by Spector2ifi - Needs testing

Loud bursts of static every once in a while, with Falkes and some NPCs in The Pitt. With Falkes, it's probably supposed to be some dialog that instead turned into static. With NPCs in The Pitt it happened not during dialogue, but while pressing E on then and them telling you to "go away".

2 ---> Game freezes with big or multiple explosions - Reported by Spector2ifi - Needs testing

During the Point Lookout MQ when Calvert Mansion explodes, the game can freeze. This can happen in the capital wasteland too when multiple cars or trucks explode. Singular explosions seems to work fine though. It just seems to be big/multiple explosions.

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A little extra information/FAQ:

You're not supposed to be using LOOT, BOSS or any other load order sorting tool. I put a whole section at the end of the guide dedicated to the load order. If you find more mods you want to add, you'll have to analyze compatibility yourself. Open FO3Edit, click on plugins and see how many and which .esms an .esps are overwritten by the new mod plugin. You should look at conflicts/overwriting information in FO3Edit using some common sense. As a general rule you can put the new mod after all of those in the guide but that doesn't mean you won't have to check for compatibility and maybe put the plugin in a specific place in the load order.

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Overhaul Modding Guide - Tweaks and Fixes Patch

This is a patch i made to help with this guide. It includes:

-A mod i created called "Proper Projectile and Casings" (PPaC) that gives proper projectiles and casings to weapons. So for example, the 10mm pistol won't eject a rifle bullet casing when shooting. And the bullet projectile itself will be correct as well, according to the weapon. I have done that for all of the main firearms in the game and it was made specifically for the guide, so it requires RH_IS + WMK + Millenia's weapon mods + all of Millenia's weapon mods fixes by Jacqueslws + WMK - dlc weapons enabler by Jacqueslws + Realistic Bullet Speed to be installed altogether and properly.

-A tweak to the 10mm SMG stats, to make it two-handed and fix a small bug when using RH_IS + WMK.

-A tweak to the Colonel Autumn's 10mm Pistol stats, to overwrite some data in the "Millenia_WMK.esp" file (from "Millenia's Weapons - WMK patch") and fix its missing/broken textures.

-A tweak to the Colonel Autumn's Laser Pistol mesh files, to overwrite some files from "Millenia's Weapons - WMK patch" and fix its missing/broken textures.

-A tweak to the Smuggler's End mesh files, to fix some texture paths from "Millenia's Weapons - WMK patch".

-A tweak to the Protectron's Gaze mesh files, to fix some texture paths from "Millenia's Weapons - WMK patch".

-A fix for the wooden planks inside Calvert Mansion which would stay floating in the air even after hostile NPCs tried to pass through them, due to a poorly implemented fix introduced by UUF3P 2.3.2.

 
Just download and install it when the guide instructs you to. I don't recommend trying to use it outside of this guide as it requires many specific mods/patches present in the guide in a specific order.

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List of missing retextures that should be added to this guide, if someone ever makes them:

Creatures:

Bloatfly
Albino Radscorpions
Broken Steel and Point Lookout Ghouls
Swampfolk

Weapons:

Mesmetron
Gatling laser
Fat Man
Heavy incinerator
Dart gun
Nuka Grenade

Blunt or unarmed weapons:

Axe
Chinese Sword
Trench Knife
Ripper
Shovel
Switchblade
Lead pipe
Nail board
Police baton
Pool cue
Repellent stick
Rolling pin
Tire iron
Deathclaw gauntlet
Power fist

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List of relevant mods that had to be kept out of this guide and the reasons why:

More Map Markers:
https://www.nexusmods.com/fallout3/mods/2446
According to "CivisRomanus": "Before using, this mod needs a bit of cleaning and renumbering its entries with FO3Edit." According to "IAreBob" and "Deadmano", the whole plugin needs to be cleaned, as it contains many dirty edits. According to "Agm88", this mod changes the worldspace data of multiple areas to something complete different from the base game and causes many problems.

Power Armor Increases Height:
https://www.nexusmods.com/fallout3/mods/22901
According to "XerionTheBrave": "This mod doesnt work with like half of the game (if not more) power armor or any custom power armor." According to "pvtboxtop": "NPC's shorter than others because the power armor is custom or just doesn't work with the mod". Basically the mod is incomplete and doesn't affect everything it should.

Impervious Power Armour:

https://www.nexusmods.com/fallout3/mods/13325
Great mod, but seems to be buggy or not work in certain conditions. Incompatible with certain power armor mods as well.

OJO BUENO Texture Pack (New Vegas Nexus):

https://www.nexusmods.com/newvegas/mods/39755
Can be used in Fallout 3 and would be used as a base, to cover textures that aren't covered by NMC's packs. Caused a noticeable performance loss on my system, no matter which version I used.

Megaton Lighting Overhaul:

https://www.nexusmods.com/fallout3/mods/7875
Caused a noticeable performance loss, and the lighting added by this mod seems to pop in and out of view depending on the distance, which can be a bit annoying.

FPS Grenade Hotkey:

https://www.nexusmods.com/fallout3/mods/8112
Mod seems to be buggy. Sometimes it makes you throw the grenade too fast (when you should still be able to cancel it) or not throw it at all. It also makes some animations look weird, when holding guns.

Combat Enhanced-Tactics:

https://www.nexusmods.com/fallout3/mods/6492
This mod tries to bring some nice improvements to NPC combat behaviour, but it makes combat a lot harder as they move around way too much while shooting, etc. Some users have reported it messes up Liberty Prime as well.

Responsive Kill Reactions (and its alternative Kill Reactions - RKR Enhanced):

https://www.nexusmods.com/fallout3/mods/11750/
https://www.nexusmods.com/fallout3/mods/20614
Similar to the mod above, it tries to improve on NPC behaviour but messes up in a few areas, such as making NPCs indiscriminately crowd around a dead body even if you keep killing them one by one in the same spot. Another example is having every non-agressive NPC in an area flee as soon as you enter it just because there was a dead body lying around (that wasn't even put there by the player).

Ragdoll Overhaul FO3 Edition:

https://www.nexusmods.com/fallout3/mods/20143
Should be a great mod, but it seems to possibly cause many different problems with other mods and with some aspects in the vanilla game as well, such as breaking cutscenes or NPC behaviour. It also seems to glitch bodies in certain occasions and make bullet wounds not visible anymore.