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Community Picks - 15 Mar 2017

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This week we turn entirely to the community to let us know some of their top picks for the games they are playing. We will be interspersing the Staff Picks every now and again to show some of these submissions, so please continue to get them into us using this new and handy form.

Please fill out the form completely and ensure that you add some details about the mod and why you have chosen it (similar to how our community members have below).  

Just remember that other mods on the site may do roughly the same thing, so keep your eyes peeled and understand that these are just personal picks. That said, hopefully, you'll find something you may not have seen before. 



Submitted By: jazzar23
Game: Skyrim
Mod Author: AceeQ
Mod: Fantasy Soundtrack Project

Fantasy Soundtrack Project adds 235 new tracks to Skyrim and an additional 20 tracks with the combat plug-in, bringing an unbelievable amount of diversity of sound into the world many of us have been wondering around for ages.

This mod brought Skyrim back to life for me, because while the default soundtrack is an amazing series of incredible pieces, after 400 hours of the same thing over and over it got old and another 100 hours later and I was ready to mute the in-game music outright. Then I found this gem and the adventures were wondrous once more and the battles were intense and fulfilling unlike they had been in ages.

One of the best parts is it has an optional replacer or add-on feature so you don’t have to abandon the sounds of Skyrim we’ve come to love after so long, they just don’t have to be the only thing you ever hear.

Sound is half the experience in any game, and this soundtrack makes the Dragonborn's story one worth living all over again.



Submitted By: Rcoll
Game: Fallout 4
Mod Author: TinyManticore
Mod: Start Me up - Alternate Start and Dialogue Overhaul

Well, on the...off chance that you play Bethesda games, you'll probably know that nearly every one of them lets you create your own protagonist. They plop you down in a huge world and leave the character's morals, personality and past up to you and say "Go, go and explore our wondrous creation!".

Except Fallout 4 isn't really like that. Sure, you choose your character's face, but beyond that...they are and always will be the 200 year old soldier/lawyer looking for the people who killed their spouse and kidnapped their son. It really is hard to feel like you're playing as your own character, because you're not, you're playing as Bethesda's.

Yes, technically as soon as you leave the vault you can just go anywhere and completely ignore the main quest, but does that really make sense? Does it even remotely resemble something close to reason that a parent searching for their child would stop to do favours for every random stranger they meet? You are kind of forced into playing through the main quest or to throw all logic out the window and just pretend the first part of the game didn't happen or was a dream or something. Even then you can't seem to go two side quests without the SS wanting to say something about being 200 years old or how they miss their damn son.

Enter, Start Me Up. It lets you start the game as just some guy in the wasteland at a location of your choosing. You are also given some choices to further define your character(Are you a Trader, a Doctor, a Raider etc?) and a list of New Vegas style Traits to choose from.

By now you might be thinking "Okay, but how is this different from every other alternate start mod that has ever been made for the game?". Well, what really makes this mod truly S.P.E.C.I.A.L is that the author has gone through all the dialogue in the game, and replaced all references to the vault, life before the war, your spouse, and that freaking kid you would otherwise feel obligated to track down. Never before have I felt such freedom in the game to just...explore, as my own character with their own story. And that's really what these games are supposed to be about.



Submitted By: pksky
Game: Skyrim
Mod Author: andrelo1
Mod: Alchemist's Journal

This mod is both useful and a natural fit for anyone who enjoys playing with alchemy. In the vanilla game, if you don't have an ingredient for a potion that you have made before, you just won't be able to see that potion, nor find out what you are missing.

With this mod, it adds some realism in that you use it the way you would in real life. It keeps notes about what potions you've mixed from what ingredients! Now if you need to make another batch of some particular potion, you can check your journal to see which ingredients you've discovered for it, and go on the hunt to those places where you know you can find the ingredients, just like a "real" alchemist!



Submitted By: Enkidu98
Game: Fallout 4
Mod Author: Hozsa
Mod: Easy Homebuilder and Working Double Beds (Rebuild your Sanctuary) by Hozsa

I really like to have Sanctuary 'restored'. Codsworth's presence there and his attention to his duties can easily explain why at least the players house (and perhaps because he is neighbourly and anxious.. the neighbours houses) has been kept in good shape.

As such, having this mod and its fully navmeshed homes, plus all the other little pieces in addition to his beds fixes, made this a 'no-brainer' mod.

On top of it all, Hozsa's very responsive to his users and has made efforts to help others with their mods, make reference to them on his page, and is a genuine gem in the community.



Submitted By: kestrelhawk
Game: Skyrim
Mod Author: Mike Hancho aka Balok
Mod: Helgen Reborn

In simple terms, this mod gives the player a quest to rebuild Helgen after Alduin destroys it.

This isn't a simple mod, but a story that the player can fully immerse in, not only with well-fleshed characters but a gripping storyline that will draw the player in from start to finish. I love the ways Mike Hancho and his team blend every facet of the mod into Skyrim, even making sure it works with the vanilla beginning of the game, as well as many other mods.

Also, despite being 'retired' from modding, he still maintains a presence on his mod page, helping everywhere and everyone he can if they have any problems with his mod. That he devotes that time is very telling as to his character, and how he truly feels about what he has made.

He has now made Helgen Reborn available in SSE, and even more people, new to Skyrim due to the remaster, can play and enjoy this fantastic mod. Besides the great story, I've seen effects in this mod I've never seen in any other, and the play is neither over or underpowered (He does have a level recommendation to start). I will always have this mod in my load order, whether or not a particular character plays it or not. I am a role player of TES, Skyrim in particular, and also write some fan fiction set in the world of Skyrim.

The first time I played through Helgen Reborn, it was so good that it figured heavily into the story of the character I played in it. I love this mod, and the many endorsements it has only shows how much others do as well. I cannot recommend it enough to other players, and I hope you and the Nexus Team can see this as well.



Submitted By: zcul
Game: Skyrim Special Edition
Mod Author: sialivi
Mod: Blowing in the Wind

Skyrim is windy, you can hear that when playing, but you do not see it. Hanging signs and lanterns stand still in the windy Skyrim environment, villages and cities like in an image or a screenshot. "Blowing in the Wind" changes that. Signs and lanterns now swing in the wind – and that brings more immersion to the game.

The author calls it a "subtle immersion mod“, but actually s/he provides the user with 3 selectable levels of intensity the signs and lanterns react to the wind (light, medium and heavy) and a boatload of patches for a huge number of notable mods and plugins. The fomod installer (if using a mod manager like NMM) is easy to handle and automatically detects whether the user has installed any of the mods or plugins (over 50) the author made a patch for. A cracking immersion mod that I can highly recommend.

18 comments

  1. GenralYankee
    GenralYankee
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    What is the name of the mod manager you have to use?
    1. literallybyronic
      literallybyronic
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      You can use Nexus Mod Manager but if you plan to do heavy modding I recommend Mod Organizer. The newer version of NMM will be much more like that when it comes out as Nexus hired MO's designer to help create their new software.
    2. bubinga64
      bubinga64
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      Just don't hold your breath waiting for the new NMM. I'm not trying to be rude, but the current one has been in Beta for the 7 years that I can attest to and the site being revamped has been discussed for at least as long. Again, nothing snide insinuated. You have to keep your expectations in line with reality. Lots of people promise lots of things...
  2. pksky
    pksky
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    Alchemist's journal submitted by me. I'd like to think I'm not a nobody! Kidding, not a big deal! The important thing is for people to discover some useful new mods. I've got blowing in the wind, but I'll have to check the fantasy soundtrack project. I've got another music compilation but it replaced the vanilla music, which I miss sometimes, so maybe this one will allow me to add it back and more. Thanks jazzar23 for submitting that one!
  3. hooppenn
    hooppenn
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    There are a lot of games and mods that I love, But, I no there called games but I cannot get over the unforgiving sentences used at times. Ex, fallout 3, fallout 4, Witcher, and many others. Example: Dr. Le, to James daughter or son, you were suppose to be in the vault, instead of explaining that he, or she was being hunted for, her father leaving the vault to start with, or even Jones's was killed. He or she never get's the chance to even tell the truth. Even the Father, James, why did you leave the vault ?, You'd be safe in the vault, but as always the real reason of he or she leaving , Never get's answered. Does anyone no of a game where the sentences of all the Charters make sense ?
  4. literallybyronic
    literallybyronic
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    Can't wait to check out Blowing in the Wind. Still waiting for that SKSE SE version.... soon...
    1. seba1337
      seba1337
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      We're already at mid March so it should be veeeery soon...... hopefully.
    2. literallybyronic
      literallybyronic
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      i'll be busy with ME:A for a few weeks so hoping it'll be ready by the time I'm finished with that... fingers crossed!
    3. Loveblanket
      Loveblanket
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      If you haven't pre-ordered ME:A, you might want to check out the early reviews of the early game areas. They're pretty brutal. I watched a Let's Play of the first 5 hours on a Youtube channel and it was awful.
    4. literallybyronic
      literallybyronic
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      I already pre-ordered, and I'm well aware of the potential for awfulness (I lived and played through the demise of Origin and Westwood so I've held a grudge against EA for about 20 years now) but I'm trying not to let reviews sway me. The dude who wrote the RPS review sounds to me like he just doesn't like Bioware games, as pretty much everything he complains about is their standard fare. So yeah, it may suck, but if I played through UVIII and UIX, I'm damn well gonna play this too. Gotta at least give it a shot.
    5. vixsyn
      vixsyn
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      Eh, people think what they think and feel what they feel but just because a game is panned by some reviewers doesn't mean it'll be bad. Plenty of people criticised DA:I and ME:3, even SWTOR, but frankly the storytelling and interactions in all of those games were things I never had any issue with. I loved them all. And hell, I know I'll love ME:A because of the formula Bioware games are made with.

      Oh, and Blowing in the Wind is great. I use it alongside Skyrim is Windy. Such breezy ambience.
  5. Sentinel199
    Sentinel199
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    Does it even remotely resemble something close to reason that a parent searching for their child would stop to do favours for every random stranger they meet?

    In one sentence you have summarized my main chagrin with the Witcher 3. Another exemplary example of how they sacrificed storytelling for the commercialization of "Open World".
    1. Ethreon
      Ethreon
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      As far as I'm aware you can just get on with the main quest and nobody forces you to do favours for strangers.
    2. Sentinel199
      Sentinel199
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      Exactly the same can be said about Fallout 4. But you are missing the point entirely.
    3. vixsyn
      vixsyn
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      This always irritated me in Fallout 4 - I'm not a mother in real life so I can't comprehend the emotions involved, but I'm a dog-owner-parent-thing, and if one of my furbabies was missing I'd be going crazy. If I have any clue as to where my loved one might be, I'm not going to slam on the breaks because some people need rescuing from a museum or have lost their lucky hat. Screw them, my baby is missing.

      Sure, no one is forcing you to stop and help anyone else, but content is thrown at you from every direction in an attempt to distract you. Your interactions with everyone around you are weirdly normal when all you'd likely be consumed with would be "Have you seen my baby? No, really, I don't care about your corn, have you seen my baby?"

      The Witcher 3 was a little more forgivable considering Geralt needed to earn a living on the hoof, but Sentinel is right, it's a bit jarring to think you're putting the potential safety of your child to one side whilst you take care of the local idiots who constantly wander in to danger, summon demons with their selfish and evil desires and lose half their s*** daily.

      I've often tried to RP in FO4 that I'm not someone's mother and everyone around me is confused or I'm playing them for some reason of my own - like I'm a big sister but no one would take sister as seriously, so I'm pretending to be Mom. Actually having dialogue that supports my imagination is a great thing!
  6. Meihyr
    Meihyr
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    Congrats to all those who made it.
    1. Enkidu98
      Enkidu98
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      Seconded.
  7. seba1337
    seba1337
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    Downloading all of them except the alchemist book, as I don't play alchemist I use the Alchemist Compendium mod (too lazy, I know) and just make the potions I need, like blacksmithing and enchanting ones. Great mods!
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