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Phaedrus aka gizmologist

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About this mod

This mod creates a small, but nice, house on an island along Azura's Coast. It is called Mudcrab Island because a certain temulent mudcrab lives under the back porch.

Permissions and credits
My first actual mod - three years in the making! (started in June 2006, released in June 2009)

This mod creates a small but nice house on an island along Azura's Coast.  It is called Mudcrab Island because a certain temulent mudcrab lives under the back porch.

It's more than just a house mod, though - there is MUCH more than meets the eye, and if you live there for any period of time, you're in for a few surprises.  But I won't spoil it for you...


Place the zip in your Morrowind folder and unzip it.  The ESP is called "Mudcrab Island.esp".

-----------------------------------The House-----------------------------------

The house is not large, but has two floors, a basement, and something I've not seen elsewhere: an attic.  I'm especially proud of the attic.

There is a ship docked outside which you can sail to many of the coastal towns around Vvardenfell and Solstheim.  It can carry a considerable cargo, and you can view this cargo remotely by checking the Ship's Manifest.  (If you think the Manifest is a cheat, don't use it.)

There is a small rowboat to row around the islands.  The character cannot sit (sitting in Vvardenfel is apparently very rude) so the character rows while standing.  To operate the rowboat, activate it and face the direction you want to go.  To stop, activate it again.

Portable armor mannequins are included, using my own concepts that are (or were back in 2006 ... for all I know it's common now) an improvement over existing mannequins: no longer can you accidentally lose your stuff, yet they're still portable.  It works thusly: a mannequin base (which looks oddly like a crate lid) is placed where you want the mannequin, and activated.  Choose "Assemble Mannequin" and a mannequin appears atop the base, facing in the opposite direction as the player character.  To "disassemble" the mannequin, simply activate the mannequin and choose "Dispose of Corpse".  Doing so leaves the base ready to be moved or reassembled.  Note that the mannequin base is non-responsive if a mannequin (or anyone else, including the player character) is standing on it.

As the day passes, the lighting on the second floor changes.  The effect is very subtle - perhaps too subtle.  Be sure to pet the kitten, he doesn't bite.

There are casks for each type of drink in the basement, so you can store an unlimited supply of hooch.  If used with an inebriation effects mod, you can have quite a bit of fun!

In the basement there's a functional practice dummy.  It's a creature, so you can attack it to practice, and your skills will actually increase.  It should be immortal - at least I've never managed to kill it.  If you do manage to kill it, dispose of the corpse and it should respawn.

The woodstove in the basement keeps the house warm.  It is also a convenient way to burn your trash or get rid of evidence, as it destroys whatever is placed in it...

Also in the basement is a potion sorter.  Be patient when using it, the script takes 100 frames, plus one frame per alchemy item in your inventory, to run, which can add up to several seconds.  This was done so that it runs very politely in the background and allows you to continue playing as it runs.

There is a ingredient "fixer", on the shelf above the work table.  The fixer replaces unique and trapped alchemy items with normal items.  This makes them stack nicely in inventory, but it can screw up some quests.  I don't see this as a cheat, because any traps on the items will have already been set off when the character picked the item up.

However, the ingredient fixer does do something "cheatish" with Corprus Meat - I figured that a "large chunk" was equal to two "medium chunks", which were in turn each equal to two "small chunks".  Also, wrapped chunks are "unwrapped" when fixed.  Thus, all corprus meats are converted into small chunks.  I guess this might be a cheat, as it can increase the total number of chunks, but I believe it only makes sense that a larger chunk can be cut into smaller chunks.

-----------------------------------The Tower-----------------------------------

Near the house there is an old Imperial stone tower.  In the past, this tower used to confine "special prisoners", meaning people the Empire wished would disappear, but for one reason or another, didn't wish to simply execute.  It was known as "Aufsatz von Bitterkein", the Tower of Bitterness.  Think of the Bastille, or the Tower of London.

Lower class prisoners were kept in oubliettes - cells with a trap door in the ceiling as the only means of entry or exit - in the basement.  Such cells are very difficult to escape - something to keep in mind if you have the urge to enter one.  Upper class prisoners were kept on the third floor, in more typical cells.  Not all prisoners survived their confinement, as their bitter spirits attest.

The tower was eventually abandoned when reformers were on the cusp of discovering its existance, which would have sorely damaged the reputation of several very popular and powerful politicians.  So politically embarassing was it, in fact, that all records of it's existance were hastily destroyed, and its provenance is today entirely forgotten.

(No, this backstory isn't inspired by Guantanamo, and fie unto you should you so think.  It was actually inspired by the Man in the Iron Mask.)

The tower contains five floors.  I am quite proud of the special effects on the uppermost floor of the tower.  The sunbeams shining in the windows change position throughout the day, and disappear at night.  The overall effect is quite nice.

Having been cleared out before being abandoned, there is little to be found in the tower.  However, the tower might make a nice home if the house doesn't meet your tastes.

------------------------------Meshes and Textures------------------------------

This mod includes many of my own meshes.  Most use textures already pre-existing in the game BSA files, but a few, such as the paintings in the house, have unique textures.  This was done to make personalization easy - just replace the painting textures with your own and you can have a picture of your girlfriend/boyfriend, hamster, or cat in your Morrowind house.  (Use the TGA format, 16 bit color depth, uncompressed, 256x256 or 512x512 pixels.)

There is a sword hidden somewhere in this mod.  I've included extra textures for it in case you don't like the color.  These textures are included in three zip files in the textures/MI folder.  Just extract the one you want to the same folder and it will overwrite the existing textures.

In the construction set, every new object in this mod has the prefix MI, including the scripts, the creatures, and the mannequin race and NPCs, even the sounds.  The file name of every mesh, sound file, and my own textures starts with the prefix "MI_".  Those textures that are the work of others, do not: Barbus' textures (fireplaces and clocks) start with "bar_", Blk's textures start with "Blk_", and Cait's textures have no prefix at all.  However, the meshes and sounds of others have been renamed to avoid conflicts.

This mod modifies several exterior cells: Azura's Coast (9,-10), and the waterfronts of several towns along the Vvardenfel coast to make room for another ship.

------------------------Credits, in no particular order------------------------

AcidBasik - the Practice Dummy that actually lets you practice
Barabus - the amazing Clocks and Fireplaces
Cait - for the little Kitten, the cutest thing to ever crash Morrowind
Mighty Joe Young - the helmet mesh from which Phaedrus' Helm is derived
My darling, patient wife - for putting up with me as I mod instead of doing the laundry
Salaa - for playtesting, inspiration, and transcription
Hitman667 - for playtesting, inspiration, advice, ideas, and laughter


If you wish to any of my work (check the credits to see what isn't mine) in a mod of your own, please feel free to do so.


This mod was originally written back in 2006.  I never intended to release it; it was to be exclusively for my own personal use, so I had no qualms about including meshes, scripts and textures created by others.  I used it for a while, and then left Morrowind for other pursuits.  Recently, I finally got a video card that would play Oblivion, and that game got me interested in modding again.

That time around, however, I wished to release this mod.  I have taken pains to get permission from the various copyright holders, unless their work was clearly a resource intended for reuse, but I may have missed something.  If you, or someone you know, created any content that I've released here without your permission or acknowledgement, please forgive me.

Then Skyrim came out and I got all interested in modding again.  I was disappointed to see that PlanetElderScrolls, where I had hosted this, was gone.  I am uploading it here on the Nexus to keep it alive.

If you have any questions regarding this mod, please feel free to contact me here, or PM me on the Bethesda Forums.