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Enai Siaion

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About this mod

Growl is a lightweight werewolf and werebear overhaul. Better werebeast combat, scaling, experience gain, reworked perks, synergies between beast and mortal form, lunar transformations, werebears and many quality of life improvements. Growl makes werebeasts a viable choice without "taking over" or imbalancing the game.

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Growl - Werebeasts of Skyrim

❱❱❱ Features

  • A werebeast overhaul in vanilla-plus style.
  • Makes werebeasts viable at all stages of the game.
  • Many quality of life improvements.
  • Werebears.
  • Lightweight scripts, no save bloat.
  • Can be installed during your playthrough.

❱❱❱ The beastblood

Hircine's gift inflicted upon mankind is known as the beastblood. It is not only a strength, but also a curse. You gain the following abilities in both mortal and beast form:

  • Beastblood: The beastblood grants immunity to disease.
  • Beastblood: The beastblood causes 25% weakness to fire and silver weapons inflict 20 extra damage to you.
  • Call of the Blood: At night, 0-40% (based on the phases of the moon) chance that your curse manifests, forcing you to take the form of the beast.
  • (Argonian) Rabies: Your Argonian blood adds poison damage based on level to your attacks in beast form.
  • (Breton) Skinwalker: Your Breton blood reduces the cooldown of Beast Form by 50%
  • (Dark Elf) Raging Hatred: Your Dark Elven blood extends the duration of Beast Form by 60 seconds.
  • (High Elf) Golden Mane: Your High Elven blood grants 15% bonus magic resistance in beast form.
  • (Imperial) Pack Leader: Your Imperial blood reduces the cooldown of howls in beast form by 50%.
  • (Khajiit) Hunting Instinct: Your Khajiit blood reduces the Stamina cost of power attacks in beast form by 20%.
  • (Nord) Vargr: Your Nord blood grants 20% bonus attack damage for 30 seconds after feeding in beast form.
  • (Orc) Primal Rage: Your Orc blood halves attack damage taken for 15 seconds upon activating Beast Form.
  • (Redguard) Strong Stomach: Your Redguard blood restores 100 points of Stamina when you feed in beast form.
  • (Wood Elf) Moonchaser: Your Wood Elven blood grants 10% extra movement speed in beast form.

Call of the Blood warns you shortly before you change, giving you time to get clear of populated areas. While forced transformations at night are a feature in older TES games, having them occur at random with no warning only serves to discourage the player from entering cities at night. Equipping Hircine's Ring has the effect of allowing you to "control your transformations", and therefore disables Call of the Blood. You are more likely to transform at night if the moons are full, and less likely if they are dark.

You also gain the following power in mortal form:

  • Beast Form: Take on the form of the beast for 150 seconds. 90 second cooldown.

The change from a 1/day power in vanilla Skyrim to a cooldown based power in Growl makes it much more useful. Note that selecting the power during the cooldown still results in a message that it can only be used once a day. This is a Skyrim feature. In version 2.0.0 and later, you gain a debuff in your magic effects list that indicates the remaining cooldown.

❱❱❱ Werebeasts

Vanilla Skyrim werewolves are underpowered in the late game. They lack survivability, a heal on demand, any useful synergy with mage characters, and even basic features like being able to loot corpses or revert to mortal form at will, forcing players to leave loot behind. Growl includes many buffs and quality of life improvements to make werebeasts viable throughout the game.

Basic stats

You gain the following effects in beast form:

  • Carry weight increased by 500 points
  • Take no damage from falls
  • Immune to disease
  • Werebeast attacks deal 10 (+1 per character level) base damage (up to level 50)
  • Werebeast skin grants 60 (+6 per character level) base armor (up to level 50)
  • Werebeast skin grants 25% (+1% per character level) magic resistance (up to level 50)
  • Health increased by 50 points
  • 100% of base Magicka transferred to Stamina instead
  • Move 15% faster
  • Regenerate 20% of maximum Stamina per second
  • Able to feed on humanoid and animal corpses to restore 50 points of Health and extend the remaining duration by 30 seconds
  • Bloodthirst: Werebeast claws do 10 points of bleed damage, healing you for the same amount.

Raising base Magicka or Stamina both result in more Stamina in beast form. This enables both warriors and mages to effectively make use of beast form. For warriors who do not invest into Magicka at all, transferring their 100 starting Magicka to Stamina results in the same Stamina bonus as in vanilla Skyrim.

Quality of life features

Change back: You can now hold down the power button to change back out of beast form after the 10 second shout cooldown has passed. (Or 30 seconds after a forced transformation at night from the Call of the Blood ability.)

Looting: Werebeasts can now interact with containers, collect ingredients and loot corpses (corpses you can't feed on, such as undead without the Savage Feeding perk, can't be looted). However, lacking opposable thumbs, they cannot pick locks. Take the Totem of the Hunt perk to destroy locks instead.

Shout cooldown: Activating beast form now suspends your active shout cooldown, allowing you to use howls without the shout cooldown getting in your way. When you revert form, the shout cooldown resumes.

Werebeast attacks: Werebeast special attacks no longer have cooldowns associated with them. This is a little known feature in vanilla Skyrim and caused them to not work for seemingly no reason. They have also been updated to feel more impactful; for instance, the knockdown back hand attack now launches targets in an arc instead of straight along the ground.

The loophole with many other implementations of werebeast looting where you can equip armor or weapons by opening the loot screen and navigating to your inventory tab is not available in Growl. This is an exploit and does not belong in a vanilla-plus experience.

Scaling and experience gain

A major drawback of werebeasts in vanilla Skyrim is their lack of skill scaling and inability to gain experience. In Growl, werebeasts scale with your highest weapon skill and armor skill:

  • In beast form, gain +0.5 damage per level in your highest weapon skill, and +3.0 armor per level in your highest armor skill (up to level 100).
  • In beast form, feed on a corpse to gain experience in your highest weapon skill and armor skill. Experience is based on the corpse's level.

In the event of a tie between skills, it prioritises One-Handed over Two-Handed over Archery, and Light Armor over Heavy Armor.

❱❱❱ Howls

Werebeasts can howl to create a variety of effects. As in vanilla Skyrim, you start with Howl of Terror. To change to another howl, recover its Totem during the Totems of Hircine quest and activate the Totem. Howls now have a 15 second cooldown.

To use a howl, tap the power button in beast form.

  • Howl of Brotherhood: Howl to summon two wolves to your side. If you are a werebear, summons bears instead.
  • Howl of Terror: Howl to cause nearby living targets within 100 feet to flee in terror for 15 seconds.
  • Howl of the Hunt: Howl to detect living targets in a 300 foot radius. This distinguishes between targets that are in combat, searching for you and unaware of you.

Vanilla Skyrim howls are weak except for the summoning howl. Growl improves the other two by adding their vanilla Skyrim perk effects (increased level cap, ability to distinguish between targets that are in combat or not) to them as a baseline and adding new perks in their place which further improve them. Howl of Terror's duration has additionally been reduced because long duration fear effects tend to be detrimental, forcing you to chase down enemies.

❱❱❱ The Werewolf perk tree

Growl expands the Werewolf perk tree from 8 to 19 perks, and the number of Werewolf perk points you can spend from 11 to 27.

To get Werewolf perk points, feed on corpses in beast form. To compensate for the increased number of Werewolf perks, each subsequent level requires only 1 more feeding than the last, down from 2 in vanilla Skyrim.

  • Bestial Strength (4): Deal 25/50/75/100% more attack damage in beast form.
  • Animal Vigor: Additional 100 point bonus to Health and Stamina in beast form.
  • Rampage: Beast form lasts 50% longer and feeding extends the duration 50% more.

  • Infinite Duress: Frenzy attacks (one-handed standing power attacks) in beast form stun targets for the duration.
  • Supernatural Strength: Back hand attacks (two-handed standing power attacks) in beast form disarm targets.
  • Roadkill: Leap attacks (two-handed sprinting power attacks) in beast form do a critical strike equal to twice your Stamina and throw targets.

  • Feral Instincts: Power attacks in beast form cost 25% less Stamina and do 25% more damage.
  • Improved Bloodthirst (2): Beast form attacks do an additional 10/20 points of bleed damage, healing you for the same amount.
  • Swipe: Power attacks in beast form can hit multiple targets in front of you.

  • Lycanthropic Speed: Movement speed is increased by 10%, both in and out of beast form.
  • Lycanthropic Regeneration (2): Regenerate an additional 1/2% of your maximum Health and Stamina per second, both in and out of beast form.
  • Spread the Beastblood: Give your follower the beastblood by trading Werebeast Blood with them. No effect on vampires.

  • Totem of Ice Brothers (2): Werebeast Howl of Brotherhood calls Ice Wolves or Snow Bears/Werewolves or Werebears instead.
  • Totem of the Hunt (2): Werebeast Howl of the Hunt shatters locks up to Adept/Expert level at close range.
  • Totem of Terror (2): Werebeast Howl of Terror affects even dragons, forcing them to land for 30/60 seconds.

  • Gorging: Feeding heals 100 points more.
  • Savage Feeding: Able to feed off the undead in beast form, and loot their corpses.

  • Bury the Beast: No longer forced to transform at night.
  • Wolf Among Men: The frequency of Silver Hand Elite werebeast hunters is reduced by 80%.

The reduced number of feedings per perk point is not retroactive if the mod is installed during a playthrough, but will be applied correctly each time you get a perk point after that. If you have Werewolf perks in vanilla Skyrim, you get the corresponding Growl perks.

❱❱❱ Receiving the beastblood

Several ways to get started on your journey:

  • Progress through the Companions questline: This is the only way to obtain the beastblood in vanilla Skyrim.
  • Consume the Werebeast Blood: Werebeast Blood is a rare alchemy ingredient that can most often be bought at alchemy vendors (such as Zaria of Grave Concoctions in Falkreath or Elgrim of Elgrim's Elixirs in Riften) and occasionally found in the pockets of warlocks and forsworn or taken from the corpses of wild werewolves.
  • Experience a dream vision: Sleep outdoors under a clear sky at night, and you will have a dream where you can choose to beseech Hircine to grant you the beastblood. This can only occur once.

These options should appeal to both roleplayers and players who want to jump in as soon as possible, while minimising the impact on your playthrough if you choose not to become a werewolf. This also makes Growl usable in mod packs whose users may not be as interested in details.

❱❱❱ Other features

Werebears

You may choose to become a werebear instead of a werewolf.

If you become a werebeast by receiving Hircine's dream vision or consuming Werebeast Blood, a popup allows you to choose between werewolf or werebear form. If you receive the beastblood through the Companions questline, you automatically become a werewolf in accordance with the lore. If you want to change forms at a later time, recover any Totem during the Totems of Hircine quest and activate the Totem.

Version 2.0.0 includes major improvements to werebears. They can now access the Werewolf perk tree without having to change back to werewolf form, the option is available to become a werebear from the beginning, and shifting out of werebear form no longer unequips your armor. Werewolves and werebears are functionally identical, but of course we all know that bears are just better than wolves.

Werebeast hunters

Changing into beast form with witnesses around or leaving a trail of devoured corpses behind may attract the attention of the Silver Hand. Eventually, Silver Hand Elite werebeast hunters will track you down and attack you. Each time another Silver Hand Elite patrol is sent, it includes more and stronger hunters.

World events

Fights between werebeasts and their enemies can now occur in the wilderness at night, making werebeasts a bit more common in the world of Skyrim.

Spreading the beastblood

The perk Spread the Beastblood allows you to give your follower the beastblood by trading them Werebeast Blood and accepting the dialog box. Certain Skyrim characters already have the beastblood.

When a character with the beastblood is your follower, you can ask them to change into beast form in combat. They will turn into a werewolf or werebear depending on which form you have chosen, except for Skyrim characters who are canonically werewolves and will always turn into werewolf form.

The Growl MCM (Mod Configuration Menu)

If you have SkyUI installed, Growl adds a menu to your MCM where you can tweak certain parameters of the mod. Disable (or increase) lunar transformations, werewolf hunters, change experience gain in werebeast form, switch between werewolf and werebear form, etc.

❱❱❱ Compatibility

See here for a list of (in)compatible mods.

❱❱❱ FAQ

Installation procedure: Add the mod to your load order and activate it. Make sure you are not currently transformed into a werewolf.

Uninstallation procedure: Remove the mod. Any perk points in werewolf perks that have no vanilla equivalent will be lost.

  • I have RaceCompatibility and...: RaceCompatibility takes precedence over Growl regardless of load order. See the compatibility notes for a workaround.
  • Feeding does not work: This generally means another mod is overwriting the werewolf race, such as Mortal Enemies, causing a conflict. See the compatibility notes for information on how to proceed.
  • Major FPS loss when facing certain objects: This issue is caused by bad assets in other mods, such as Distinct Interiors, with excessively large and detailed collision meshes. This causes the game to slow down when facing those objects as it tries to calculate whether you are in range to activate them. Growl 2.1.0 introduces a workaround where all of the new "activate" features in Growl (such as the ability to loot corpses in beast form) are moved into a separate hidden perk that only exists in beast form. Note that this will alleviate the extra FPS loss from having more activate features than vanilla, but will not fix the FPS loss resulting from said poorly made assets in the first place. Consider removing the mods that exhibit this issue and replacing them with better quality assets.
  • Can't open the perk tree in werebear form: Fixed in Growl 2.0.0.
  • I don't get the Beast Form power after feeding: You have a conflicting or broken mod installed.
  • Beast Form power has a 24 hour cooldown: Fixed in Growl 2.3.0. When updating from earlier versions, you may have to unequip and reequip the power.
  • Looting corpses in beast form unequips their gear: Unavoidable consequence of not letting you equip items or use potions in the loot menu.
  • Can't loot gold in beast form: When you loot a corpse or container in beast form, the gold is automatically added to your inventory.
  • Can't loot quest items in beast form: Unavoidable issue.
  • Can't loot equipped items in beast form: Fixed in Growl 1.0.4.
  • Get Werewolf perk points when looting corpses in mortal form: This appears to be a vanilla Skyrim bug.
  • Are the other howls available without going through the questline and recovering the Totems: No, because they are a faction bonus for joining the werewolf faction, much like Vampire Lord form is a faction bonus for joining Harkon.