Skyrim Special Edition

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Dromundas

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Dromundas

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About this mod

Multiple Followers Framework is a new kind of follower framework, the default follower system is not edited and remains active. Adds a new follower limit of 512. More followers at your camp and around Skyrim than ever before. Supports mounts. Convert NPCs into a follower, including enemies. Many configurations: settings, dialogue, powers, and more.

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Multiple Followers Framework
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4 x 128 bit arrays
Many configurations
Compatible with all mods


If you discover a bug, post a bug report, please use the comment section for commenting on the mod.


Welcome, I am Dromundas, the creator of Multiple Followers Framework. This mod will be under development until Elder Scrolls: VI arrives or longer.

I started playing Skyrim when it first released on Xbox 360, those were the days, no mods, no command console. Many years later I studied math and computer-science, among other things, in order to learn how to build all parts of a game. My studies took me as low as a basic look at how the electrical components of a computer convert to binary and so on. I've been applying the knowledge ever since and continuously learning about the growing world of computing. The Elder Scrolls legend lives on through its community and it's been an honor to give back to that community.

Activity, genuine criticism, discussions, and suggestions are appreciated and you help to steer the fate of MFF towards a good direction when doing so.



- Description -
Multiple Followers Framework is a brand new follower framework designed for use with basic followers and also as an NPC -> follower conversion tool and as a soft MHiYH replacer. The framework was carefully designed to join a legacy of load orders and build toward something new. You can use it side by side with other follower frameworks (explained further in the Compatibility section).

The framework also comes with complimentary follower-management tools so players can get started with it right away. There are many new mechanics that can be configured, such as disabling the default hidden bow that is given to new recruits, setting bows up individually or choosing which of the 4 hidden bow-&-arrow sets are received (MFF adds 3 new hidden bow sets). For a brief list of configurable options, check out the default settings section. Many configurations exist depending on your needs. All of which can be accessed with the Manual of Configuration which contains group/auto configuration options or as dialogue options for individual/manual configuration of followers where possible.

You can also give ANY horse (mount) to ANY npc and tell them to wait on horseback so this also works for just playing around with things.

Although there are many configurations to explore, most of them are simple and the party system in MFF handles nearly identically to the default follower system by default (with a limit of 512) until you start configuring things to work differently.



Having read the description, you are probably ready now to get started with installing and using MFF. With that said, you can find more useful information below should you need it. If you dive below and don't find an answer to your question then just leave a comment.


- Compatibility -
MFF is designed to run side by side with any other follower framework: the default, AFT, EFF, UFO, FLP, NFF, UMF, and so on. I'm told it's also compatible with MHiYH I & II.

The original follower system was not edited at all, it was left untouched and is ready for mods. This framework is safe to use with just about any mod available. MFF is cleverly tucked away from everything that most people could dream up or throw at it. It's pretty much a follower framework DLC, no modifications made to the base game content, with a couple of exceptions...


There are three edits made to the game...
1. Bug Fixing: I edited conditions on "dialogue-blocking caused by trespassing" to fail on current followers and current MFF followers. (Overrides a similar fix in USSEP)
2. The distance between followers is lowered to 50 to allow groups of followers to clump up instead of marching in single file which the default value causes.
3. All non-speaking races, except the horse race, were edited to allow for dialogue with the player for use as a follower.

All of the changes listed above will override similar changes from other mods depending on the load order. Load this mod before anything you don't want to mess with if you are starting a new game. Doing so should cause no issues for MFF (dialogue can be replaced with the use of the follower-management powers included with MFF).

Lastly, followers that are managed by MFF will still join the same PlayerFollowerFaction as before, this should help with compatibility with other follower-related mods.



- Relevant/Useful Mods -
Brawl Bug Fix: https://www.nexusmods.com/skyrimspecialedition/mods/1473
Simple Outfit Manger: https://www.nexusmods.com/skyrimspecialedition/mods/15211

The Placidus Curatorius Unit: https://www.nexusmods.com/skyrimspecialedition/mods/34485


- Starting the mod -
You must manually start this mod for the first time, there is no .SEQ file included with the mod. Multiple Followers Framework automatically adds the Manual of Configuration to your inventory when you install the mod. Reading this book will open up the custom mod menu built for this mod. It's easy to add your own entries to this menu if you can read/write Papyrus. The Manual of Configuration was created to support both PC and Xbox players.

When choosing an option in the book, wait for the menu system to cycle back to being visible to allow any scripts to finish their execution. Once the framework has been started, it will remain active until shut down manually from within the Debug menu. Shutting down the framework is recommended before uninstalling the mod because it's designed to reverse as many changes as possible to prep for uninstalling.



- Default Settings -
Hidden Bows: On
Hidden Bow Type: Default
Party Limit: 512
Wait Limit: On
Wait Time: 3 days
Gold Cost: None
No Friendly-fire Perk: Off
Infighting vs. Player: On
Infighting vs. Party: On
Follower Dialogue: Partially Enabled (mount dialogue disabled)
Animal Follower Dialogue: Partially Enabled (bow/mount dialogue disabled)
Non-Follower Dialogue: Partially Enabled (mount dialogue disabled)
Detection Cloak: Follower (On), Animal Follower (On), NPC (Off)
All Party Powers: Disabled

All Mount Powers: Disabled


- Features -
+ Manual start-up

+ Configurable party limit up to 512
+ Configurable wait time/limit
+ Configurable Friendly-fire perk
+ Configurable infighting controls
+ Configurable recruitment cost
+ Configurable dialogue options
+ Configurable target/group powers

+ Party members can permanently wait
+ Party members can sandbox while waiting
+ Party members can ride mounts
+ Party members can own mounts
+ Party members can die in combat

+ Recruit any character in the game
+ Recruit enemies while in combat
+ Recruit mounts as followers

+ Custom follower AI template (sandboxing, riding, hold/relax)
+ 5 hidden-bow options for party members
+ Command party members to stop fighting
+ 512 ownership factions for followers

+ Debug summon all party members
+ Debug dismiss all party members
+ Debug party-safe restart
+ Debug mod shutdown


- Party System -
Multiple Followers Framework includes a complimentary, standalone follower management system.

This is a distinct system that is built-in to the core of MFF. There are no connections between the party system from MFF and the original follower system, which is why the compatibility is different than other follower frameworks. This mod is similar to how Inigo uses his own custom framework except it applies this concept to the world of basic followers. Multiple Followers Framework has always maintained the capability to serve as a follower slot host to other follower management mods if the work is done to connect them. The entire frontend of the party system can be disabled at runtime and the backend remains accessible in Papyrus for rapid prototyping with MFF. The party system also comes with many hooks which other mod developers can chain off of to add or maintain many new features based on the events within the framework.

The party system can be configured to allow for the recruitment of any NPC in the game, including enemies in the midst of combat, either through dialogue or with special powers that can be enabled. Upon recruitment of a non-follower NPC, the party system will store information about the non-follower NPCs original mental state and it will return them to this original mental state upon dismissal. Enemies recruited by the party system will successfully revert to enemies once dismissed. It's a good idea to avoid recruiting an unfinished quest character because their mental state could change during the quest and become out of sync with the follower's stored mental state, then when they revert their mental state upon dismissal their mental state could be left broken. All of the follower-management dialogue options and the follower-management powers can be enabled/disabled in-game.


Using the custom AI package in this framework, followers can be told to hold position or to relax here. Relaxing allows a follower to sandbox and interact with the area around them. You can leave them in this state "sandboxing" for all eternity by configuring the follower-wait-time limit, before telling them to wait.

The framework includes an AI package template that can be modified to change the AI package used by followers.


Recruit, dismiss, hold, relax, follow commands are all available as a targeted cone command or a 360 degree AoE command, so you can easily manage multiple followers.

* Party members on foot will stop closer to you than mounts and mounted party members.


- Mount System -
Multiple Followers Framework includes a complimentary, built-in mount system as well.

DISCLAIMER: All dialogues for the mount system start disabled. This is because giving mounts to followers is permanent! Undoing this change is no simple task.

Special steps were taken so that followers can own mounts, 512 new factions (1 for each follower) were added for mount ownership purposes.

Acquiring Mounts: ANY mount, even mounts already owned by a party member or any random NPC, can be given to a party member. To give your follower a mount, first you must enable mount-specific dialogue with the Manual of Configuration. After enabling the mount dialogue, you can talk to a follower about their mount and you will discover the option to give them their new mount. This option automatically equips a power that you can use to target any mount. The first mount hit with the power (unrelenting force projectile) will be given to whichever follower you were speaking with earlier. Followers can own an unlimited number of mounts but would probably choose the closest one to ride once given the command to mount-up.


Due to the limitations we are working with, when giving a mount to a targeted party member, the mount actually belongs to that party member's index within the array of managed followers. This means that dismissing the party member will free that index and any new party member who ends up filling the index will take over ownership of any mounts that belonged to the previous follower filling that index. It's best to keep a party member in the framework for the whole game once you start giving them mounts to avoid this issue. As stated previously, you can give anyone's mount to a different follower (well, follower index) as needed.

Riding Support: Multiple Followers Framework includes a new AI package that supports two different travel modes for followers. When your follower owns a horse (either by default or with the horse gifting power), they can be told to mount/dismount manually or automatically with the player. The game only allows characters to ride mounts that belong to them.

* Mounts and mounted party members will stop further from you than party members who are on foot.


- Party/Mount Management -
All of the party and mount management powers start disabled.

There are two categories of powers: powers to control party members, and powers to control mounts (including the player's mount). There are also three styles: target, group, and global. Powers are to be used in place of dialogue to recruit/dismiss groups of followers/mounts and order them to wait/follow.

Target powers are based on the Unrelenting Shout projectile, any eligible characters that are hit by the spell will be effected.

Group powers look pretty similar to target powers but use a single-fire cloak spell that hits all eligible characters around the player within a wide radius.

Global powers work by accessing the follower arrays within MFF and will apply to all of your currently recruited party members all around Skyrim.


- Manual of Configuration -
The Manual of Configuration is a custom mod menu that's compatible with both PC and Xbox.

The Manual of Configuration comes with one entry for all of MFF's settings, dialogue switches, power switches, and debug menus, this single entry can be reviewed as an example when adding your own custom entries if needed. Exploring all of the options within the MFF entry is recommended for new users but there are default settings and it's not required.

Some options are also available as dialogue options and can be set individually per party member. By default, the dialogue and the powers for the mount system are disabled. All group-management powers for party members and mounts start disabled to avoid cluttering the power menu (there's a lot of them). Powers can be enabled/disabled using the Manual of Configuration.


- F.A.Q. -

Follower, Animal, NPC?
The original follower system identifies two types of NPCs: the follower, and the animal follower.

Every basic follower in the game and most follower mods were created based on these two categories. Other NPCs in the game and within other mods aren't added to the appropriate factions and are not given a mental state appropriate for use as a follower so they are not detected by the original follower system. An enemy is able to be or already is aggressive toward the player and is not suitable as a follower.

MFF can detect three different categories: the follower, the animal follower, and any other NPC (including enemies).

The biggest difference is with how the NPC recruitment is handled. NPCs can not be recruited by default, you must enable it with the Manual of Configuration. The mental state of NPCs is stored upon recruitment and retrieved upon dismissal. You shouldn't recruit an important NPC during a quest or you might get stuck in the quest.

Why can I give Animal Followers a hidden bow and a mount? They won't use it.
This is not recommended, the option was only included for experimenting/mod developers.

What's this about infighting?
With the original follower system, followers getting in a fight with followers isn't usually possible but it's quite possible when using multi-follower mods. As the player, you can accidentally hit a follower a few times before they turn hostile and dismiss themselves while fighting you. Infighting controls allow you to determine how each follower reacts in these situations, you can make them very passive or have them remain your follower and still fight with you. If you do opt to have infighting occur, you can also use an MFF-specific calming power to tell followers to stand down.

What is a hidden bow?
The original follower system provides followers with a hidden bow because the game is usually full of dragon fights. The bow is hidden from the follower's inventory screen and is removed upon dismissal.

MFF adds 3 different types of hidden bows and hidden bows can also be removed. The hidden bow can be added automatically on recruitment or manually with dialogue and is removed automatically with dismissal or manually with dialogue.

What is a scripted cloak spell? Is the mod script heavy?
I would classify MFF as "not script heavy" based on my research but keep reading to learn more.

When people say a mod is script heavy, it's a quick way of saying that the mod greatly impacts the performance of the script engine for some reason specific to the mod's design. The mod can still be useful and work well enough for your needs, it's simply an important consideration when downloading multiple script heavy mods. There are limits to what the system can handle.

There are 2 major culprits in the script heavy scenario that are best avoided by mod developers where possible: Polling/update loops, and cloak spells.

For a deeper dive into this topic, check this out: https://www.reddit.com/r/skyrimmods/comments/4fgf3n/looking_for_deep_explanation_of_the_cloaking/

There is only one script in MFF that can be considered script heavy by these standards and you can disable the script, it's found on the recruitment cloak.

The invisible recruitment cloak for MFF is an auto re-casted spell. The range is pretty small, about 8 feet in front of you. The cloak is re-casted every 0.76 seconds and lasts for about 1 second on any targets in range. The cloak checks for pre-follower factions on nearby characters: PotentialFollowerFaction and PlayerAnimalFaction, and can be configured to detect any other character after the first two. Detected characters are removed from previous factions (to avoid dialogue conditions) and/or added to the MFF_PotentialFollowerFaction so they can pick-up the recruitment dialogue from MFF. Upon exiting the scripted recruit-dialogue cloak, these temporary changes are reverted to their original state.

The recruitment cloak is enabled by default because it's quite light for something that can be considered a script heavy feature.


- Known Issues -
+ When restarting the framework, followers will freeze until restarting has completed. This is intentional and disables AI related issues caused by restarting.
+ Followers have no audio/voiced responses. This is intentional and fixed with xEdit. I will ensure dialogue is working well, otherwise edits will destroy my work.
+ Follower dialogue on animals, who are technically NPCs IE. Chickens, suddenly stops working. I'm still looking into the fix for this, reload or use the control powers.
+ Followers stand around for a while or get stuck performing an in-game cinematic. Generally caused by the scene overriding AI. Exit the scene and Summon if needed.
+ Followers are really slow at mounting their horse/mount at times. The mounting action just works this way by default and seems to be related to navigation pathing.



- Extensive Mod Support -

A full backup of the mod, including all source code, is now publicly available through GitHub.

https://github.com/Digital-Sauce/Multiple-Followers-Framework

Multiple Followers framework is a resource file that supports lots of script extension.

There is a new quest "folder" dedicated to supporting future mods. Many hooks were added that don't exist in the original follower system, all of these hooks assist with synchronization and streamlines feature development. Future mods can easily hook onto actions taken by the framework and capture any associated data in the process. Mod authors can easily discover what follower is being recruited/dismissed and apply some sort of change/effect in response, or they can restart their mod automatically when MFF is restarted.

All complimentary in-game systems can be disabled, resulting in a multi-follower framework base to use in your own fully-featured follower system mod. The framework also includes ownership factions for all 512 followers and only one robust AI package template used by every follower. The source code is included within the .bsa file so you can easily learn how the whole system works using the Creation Kit. Ask for any assistance in the comments or by privately messaging me.


- Donation -
Do you like where this project is going? Offer your support to me through Patreon.

https://www.patreon.com/indiecision



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