Fallout New Vegas
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About this mod

Prevents the player from magically knowing whether or not a container or a corpse is EMPTY before having checked it.

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Empty or Not Empty?

This mod prevents the player from magically knowing whether or not a container or a corpse is EMPTY before having checked it.

When making a RPG for a wide audience, it understandably behooves Bethesda to strike a balance between immersion and momentum.  The more immersive the experience is, the slower going the game may be, and vice-versa.  The epitome of this philosophy in a Bethesda RPG is the predictable inclusion of fast travel.  Yet while it's probably true that the majority of gamers would never want to tackle a game of New Vegas' scope without fast travel, a very large proportion prefer it that way -- the more immersive, the better.  There aren't many things in a given Bethesda game more immersion-killing than bypassing 95% of one's adventuring.

But I would rank container clairvoyance pretty high on that list.  There is no in-game perk for automatically detecting the EMPTY status of a container.  No, that special ability was given to the player character by default because without it, one would have to manually rifle through containers to learn anything about their contents, and that takes time, doesn't it?  But if you take that magical ability away, what you gain in the trade-off is, of course, improved immersion.  Or, more specifically, the removal of a gaming shortcut that just happens to kill immersion quite a bit.

This mod works as advertised:

  • If you encounter a container you've never opened before, you will not be able to determine at a glance whether it's empty.
  • Once you've investigated it, however, the EMPTY notice can pop up, provided of course the container actually is empty.
  • This goes both for containers in the traditional sense (dumpsters, safes, etc.) and any corpses you may come across.
  • Confiscation containers, such as in the casinos, are unaffected.

New in version 1.5:
Support added for NV Animation For Not Animated Containers and New Vegas Mesh Improvement Mod - NVMIM (the latter of which makes suitcases animate).  The mod must be informed of the presence of these new mods by changing variables in the new config file.  These variables are off by default.


New in version 1.1:

It's obvious that there will be a lot of calls for a "Container Clairvoyance" perk down the road.  I've decided to head those requests off by putting it in as a very optional variation of the mod.  The required level is low, so the perk can be of use early in the game, but the Perception requirement is as high as the highest requirement of any New Vegas perk, because, after all, it's clairvoyance we're talking about.  An old feature that I see little purpose in supporting.

New in version 1.2:

Fixed a couple of oversights that could occasionally generate console errors.  Tidied up various timings to account for a shortcoming in how NVSE handles death events.  An important update for anyone who prefers close combat.

Notice, 2017/09/18:

There is a bug in how NVSE tallies containers.  It overlooks at least three container types:

0x0003A5B2 : LootMineFrag.  11 uses.
0x000B5BDE : LootGrenadePulseEnclave.  3 uses.
0x0014C105 : NVCGFragGrenadeCrate.  6 uses.

In-game, this results in these containers being ignored by this mod, and potentially revealing that they are "EMPTY" before the player has had a chance to investigate personally.  Although I did find a way to deal with this bug, the method unfortunately would also cause the occasional console error, as NVSE's generated array would include references that both existed and didn't exist.  I ultimately decided that the lesser evil was to continue to allow these ~20 total containers to be ignored.  If NVSE ever gets updated to correct its container bug (by adding the above three containers to its list), then this issue will disappear.

  • No vanilla assets were modified in the creation of this mod.
  • NVSE and the latest JIP LN NVSE Plugin are both required.
  • You must have Dead Money, Honest Hearts, Old World Blues, Lonesome Road, Gun Runners' Arsenal AND Yukichigai's Unofficial Patch.

Other New Vegas mods I made: