Fallout 4

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About this mod

Cause guns are loud!

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Hearing Damage

As the name implies this mod adds a hearing damage system to Fallout 4 for your masochistic enjoyment.

I would like to note quickly that 100% realism was never the goal and the mod does not provide that, instead
it provides a more "gamified" version of hearing damage.

I hope you enjoy it!

Table of Contents:
(1) Hearing Damage
(2) Hearing Protection
(3) Effects of Hearing Damage
(4) Hearing Restoration
(5) Requirements
(6) Compatibility
(7) Hearing Damage/ Hearing Protection Charts
(8) Future Plans
(9) Installation/ Uninstallation
(10) Credits/ Thanks
(11) Recommended Mods
(12) Tools Used

(1) Hearing Damage:
Your character starts out with 5,000 points of hearing. Taking hearing damage will subtract from this directly. So if it's the start and you have the full 5,000 points of hearing taking 8 points of hearing damage will leave you with 4,992  points of hearing, so on and so forth.

Hearing damage comes from two sources, gunshots and explosives. Both of which can be modified by certain factors.
(For performance reasons only the player's gunshots will cause hearing damage, so feel free to stand next to your companions while they fire a 50 cal sniper rifle. Explosives always cause hearing damage however no matter the source.)

How much hearing damage a gunshot will cause is based on three factors:
Ammo type used. (Default HD)
Whether or not the player is indoors.(Interior Offset)
Whether or not the gun is suppressed.(Suppressor Offset)

10mm rounds for example have a default HD of 4 points and Interior offset of 1 point and a suppressor offset of 1 point.
As such a 10mm round can cause 3-5points of hearing damage.
3 if it's outdoors and suppressed.
4 if it's outdoors and unsuppressed.
4 if it's indoors and suppressed.
5 if it's indoors and unsuppressed.

To briefly look at another example .308rounds have a default HD of 10 points with an interior offset of 4 points and a suppressor offset of 5 points.
Meaning .308 rounds can cause 5-14points of hearing damage.

The laser musket it should be noted works a bit differently from other guns.
The laser musket's hearing damage is multiplied by how many times it was cranked before firing, but otherwise it works the same as the standard laser rifle.

Each explosive has a maximum hearing damage it can cause and a maximum distance at which it will still cause hearing damage. Both of these numbers are increased when the explosive detonates indoors.

For example a standard frag grenade has the following values:

MaxDistance: 1750
MaxHD: 175
MaxDistance: 1250
MaxHD: 125

The distance units used are Bethesda's in game units (IGU)
22IGU is roughly equal to 1 foot (Exactly 1.0312 feet)
70IGU is roughly equal to 1 meter (Exactly 1.0001 meters)
See the Creation Kit Wiki page on the subject for more info.

The hearing damage you will actually take is calculated as a smooth percentage of your distance between the center of the explosion and the max distance.
In other words if you're outdoors and 50% of the way between the grenade and it's max distance you'll take 50% of the max hearing damage (rounded to the nearest whole number). In this case 63 points.
Being Indoors and 25% of the way from the edge to the center of the radius would cause you to take 25% of the max hearing damage (again rounded to the nearest whole number). In this case 44 points.

Naturally if you are beyond the maximum distance you will take no hearing damage.

A full list of ammo types and explosives and their respective hearing damage can be found in section 7.

(2) Hearing Protection:
In order to avoid total hearing loss you'll need to use proper hearing protection.
Hearing Protection works the same as the damage threshold system from Fallout 1, 2 and New Vegas. That is to say hearing protection subtracts directly from hearing damage.

Let's say you're wearing the “average earplugs” added by this mod and are firing a 10mm pistol.
The average earplugs provide 2 points of hearing protection meaning that the 10mm pistol will now only cause 1-3 points of hearing damage.

Earplugs have the a unique advantage in that they can be worn with any other item allowing you to “double up” your hearing protection.
Let's say in addition to the earplugs you're also wearing a combat helmet which provides 4 points of hearing protection. You now have 6 points of hearing protection meaning a 10mm pistol will never cause you any hearing damage. If we look at the .308 round again it's range would be 0-8 points of hearing damage in this situation.

This mod adds 6 new items which provide hearing damage in the form of earplugs, as well as noise canceling earmuffs.
They are as follows:
Makeshift Earplugs (1 Hearing Protection)
Average Earplugs (2 Hearing Protection)
Superior Earplugs (5 Hearing Protection)
Inferior Earmuffs (3 Hearing Protection, Upgradeable to 5)
Average Earmuffs (4 Hearing Protection, Upgradeable to 6)
Superior Earmuffs (5 Hearing Protection, Upgradeable to 12)

The mod also adds hearing protection to several of the helmets in the base game. This of course includes all the power armor helmets (Which can provide enough hearing protection to shrug off grenades).

A full list of these items and the hearing protection they provide can be found in section 7.

(3) Effects of Hearing Damage:
Hearing Stages:
As mentioned before you start with 5000 points of hearing. Every time you lose 1000 points you enter a new hearing stage.
Each stage has it's own status effects.

They are as follows:
No Significant Hearing Damage: (5000-4001)
No Effect

Minor Hearing Damage (4000-3001)
Perception -1

Moderate Hearing Damage (3000-2001)
Perception -2

Substantial Hearing Damage (2000-1001)
Perception -3
Charisma -1

Severe Hearing Damage (1000-1)
Perception -3
Charisma -2

Perception -4
Charisma -3

These effects can be viewed in the perks section of the pipboy where you will find you now have a “perk” called “Hearing.”

Communication Breakdown:
Going deaf doesn't just cause a negative status debuff however. If you go deaf you will actually lose the ability to speak with NPCs in the game, with a few exceptions.

You can always speak to previously or currently recruited companions. You can always talk to Dogmeat even if you haven't recruited him before. And you can always speak to a new NPC added by this mod, Doc Gibbons.

It is also possible speak to humanoid NPCs if you acquire the “Lip Reader” perk. You still will not be able to speak with robots however even with the perk since they don't have lips!

In game Volume Adjustment:
As your character gets closer to total hearing loss your in game volume will reflect this fact getting closer to 0% as your hearing worsens.
The in game music will never drop to zero however.
By default the pipboy radio will drop to zero when your character goes deaf but this can be changed with the settings holotape added by the mod.

The exact range your volume will go through can be modified with the settings holotape.
An unfortunate side effect of this feature that should be noted is that adjusting the game volume in the standard settings menu is now
useless as the mod will adjust it shortly after you do so.

As such all volume adjustments must be made in the settings holotape.

This mod also adds tinnitus sound effects that can play at certain times.
For those of those not aware of what tinnitus is (I envy you.) tinnitus is a ringing sound in the ears caused not by the environment, but
rather by damage to your cochlea.

In the mod tinnitus can occur in three situations:
Firing a gun and taking hearing damage has a random chance to cause tinnitus.
Taking hearing damage from an explosion will always cause tinnitus.
If you have reached either the "Substantial" or "Severe" hearing stages there is a chance for the
tinnitus sound effect to play at random intervals.

This sound effect doesn't actually cause any status effects however and is purely cosmetic.

The tinnitus sound effects can be disabled with the settings holotape.

(4) Hearing Restoration:
Unlike the real world where hearing damage is essentially irreversible, in the world of Fallout reversing it is relatively simple.

As mentioned before this mod adds a new NPC named Doc Gibbons (Voiced by Kasia)

Doc Gibbons can provide you with hearing restoration services, for a modest fee of course.
When you first meet her she will only be able to perform a basic surgery to restore a portion of your lost hearing, but with diminishing
Each time she'll only be able to restore you to one stage lower than before.

There could be a way to restore your hearing permanently however, if you find something she needs.

Doc Gibbons' Office can be found in the Third Rail in Goodneighbor by going down the tracks to the right hand side of the bar.

(5) Requirements:
Extended Dialogue Interface (XDI)
(Although not strictly required starting a new game is strongly recommended.)

(6) Compatibility:
The scripted installer currently provides compatibility patches for all the DLC as well as several mods, but not all mods will need a patch.
(All the patches I've made use Light ESPs meaning they won't count towards the 255 plugin limit.)

As mentioned before guns have their hearing damage determined by the ammo they fire. This means that if the weapon mod in question uses only vanilla ammo types it will be fully compatible without the need for any patches. (Guns that use Fusion Cores as ammo are an exception however and most likely will not be compatible at this time.)

If a mod adds new ammo types, a new helmet, or a new explosion it will need a patch.
(Some mods that add grenades are actually compatible without patches it should be noted as they simply reuse the vanilla explosions for the new grenades.)

Mods that edit the vanilla helmets and explosions may have compatibility issues.
However in most of these cases a simple merge patch should fix the issue.

I do plan to add patches for more mods in the future however.

If you want to make a patch for your favorite mod you are not only welcome to do so, but I encourage you to do so!
It should be noted however that because I'm currently not aware of a way to add compatibility for new ammo types without editing the main plugin you realistically will only be able to patch armor and explosives.
You are welcome to try though if you think you know a way (And please inform me if you can!)

This mod is compatible with “New Calibers” and “Caliber Complex” but not both at the same time.
This mod is currently incompatible with "Fusion Cells are Batteries".

Expand the spoiler tag to see all the mods which have patches available with the current installer:

(7) Hearing Damage/ Hearing Protection Charts:
Expanding the spoiler tags will give you a full list of all ammo, explosions, helmets and their associated hearing stats in the mod.
Please note these lists are very long, over 40 pages combined.

Hearing Damage Charts:

Hearing Protection Charts:

(8) Future Plans:
I want to quickly note that the first thing I plan to do is take a break from working on this mod for about a month before I start working on any updates as I've been working basically non stop for the past 6 months.

Anyway plans include:
More compatibility patches.
A way to restore you hearing if Doc Gibbons is dead.
Adding more things to do in Zama Labs.
Several small changes that don't really warrant mentioning on their own.

(9) Installation/Uninstallation:

To install simply use your favorite mod manager and just follow the steps on the scripted installer.

To uninstall open the settings holotape and select the “Uninstall” option. After this use your mod manager to uninstall like normal.

(10) Credits/Thanks:
Kasia For voicing Doc Gibbons. You can visit her Nexus profile here and her youtube channel here.

Anyone whose ever left modding advice on the Nexus forums or the creation kit wiki.
Seriously without your contributions there is no way this mod would have ever been finished.
There's no way I could mention everyone unfortunately even if I remembered everyone.
That said there a few who people who left particularly helpful advice, or even made tutorials I'd like to mention by name:


(11) Recommended Mods:

Mods that aren't required but I feel go well with this mod:
Commonwealth Warfare - Explosions (If you download this one I strongly recommend you download the optional file "No Ear Ringing Sounds" Otherwise the tinnitus sound effects from both mods will play over top of each other.)
Commonwealth Warfare - Realistic Gun Sounds And Bullet Cracks
Dynamic Music Overhaul
Lost World
Reverb and Ambiance Overhaul
Silent Protagonist

(12) Tools Used:
Bethesda Archive Extractor
Bethesda Mod School Resources (XWM.bat and LipFuzer.Bat)
Creation Kit
Creation Kit ESM Version Check Patch
FOMOD Creation Tool
F4 Creation Kit Fixes
Gimp 2
Lip Sync File Generator
Material Editor