Skyrim Special Edition

About this mod


Permissions and credits
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*Now with MCM*
Adds a dynamic system with 14 Factions you can join.
Gain reputation to summon more units.
Lose reputation to cause Hunting Parties against you.
Factions gain gold daily, and spend it on Random Events including Ambushes, & Reinforcements.
Speak to Merchants to sell items through the Faction Armories.
Over time, characters will buy and equip gear you put in their Faction's Armory.




What does this mod do?

There are three main features of this mod:

Faction Mercenaries
Progress through levels of reputation with the 14 Factions to earn new types of mercenaries, such as Folk Adventurers, Stormcloak Soldiers or College Apprentices. These mercenaries will follow you, helping you defeat your enemies whoever they may be.

Earn reputation to summon more, but be careful! Whenever your summons die, you lose reputation. Too many losses at once can leave you distrusted in the eyes of your Faction. A catastrophic defeat can even cause you to become hated.

Reputation is gained whenever you, a Faction mercenary, or a follower kills an enemy of a faction. Which of the 14 Factions will you lead? You can even lead multiple Factions to combine their forces.

Faction Armories (PC Only)
Speak to Skyrim's merchants, who have a new dialogue option for adding items to Faction Armories. There is one Armory for each Faction whose members can equip items. Over time, as you travel Skyrim, the items will passively sell to nearby characters of that faction. Speak to Belethor to sell items to Bandits, or speak to Imperial Quartermasters at Imperial camps to sell items through the Imperial Armory.

With the Armory system, you can equip your favoured factions with powerful weapons. Or, you can fool your enemies into equipping poor weapons and armor.

Faction Warfare Events
While travelling Skyrim, warfare events such as Ambushes, Hunting Parties, and Reinforcements will happen. Each Faction has a simulated amount of gold it can spend on warfare, and over time certain factions will become more or less powerful. You can force Factions to lose gold by killing their members, as well as donate to Factions you like to gain reputation with them.

Ambushes happen as you travel Skyrim (by default, only outside cities, towns, and dungeons, but you can enable those locations through the MCM). While travelling, you may see a squad of Imperials escorting a prisoner, only for Stormcloak to suddenly emerge and begin to ambush the Imperials. Or, you may see a Giant attacking a hunter out in the wilds. At nighttime, you may see Vampires or even Falmer attack. If successful, an Ambush causes its enemy to lose gold.

Hunting Parties are directed at the player. If you enrage a Faction, you will become hated, and when approaching a member of that Faction there is a chance for a Hunting Party to spawn. They will walk towards you, searching, until they find you.

Reinforcements happen most noticeably when you are in town, but also when you are in dungeons. Folk Adventurers, Stormcloaks, or Imperials will appear nearby the friendly people of Skyrim, and sandbox around, protecting the local populations. You can speak to them to dismiss them, if you no longer want them around. In dungeons, you will find Bandits reinforced by fellow Bandits, adding more numbers of enemies to regular encounters.

More Details...

Faction Hall / Leadership
  • Visit the Faction Hall for 'Join Faction' quests, to become a leader of the 14 Factions!
  • You teleport directly to the Faction Hall using a power you start with.
  • You begin with the Folk faction unlocked, and each other Faction has a short quest where you must prove yourself.
  • You can lead multiple Factions at the same time.
  • You can track the joining quest for any Faction you want to join, so that you get an entry in your journal for it. This entry doesn't update ingame, but shows you what is needed before you return to its gate.
  • Unlock improved Faction Summons by reaching higher reputations with a led Faction. Amass a more powerful army, and summon faster with more powers!

Faction Armory
  • Speak to merchants to open the 'Faction Armory'. You can deposit or withdraw items as you wish, and over time they will sell to characters in-game.
  • When an item is purchased and equipped, you are paid 33% of the item's base value, and another 33% goes to the Faction gold.
  • People choose items depending on their Class. Warriors will take heavy armor, shields and one-handed weapons, while Two-Handed Weapon Trainers will take two-handed weapons. Fletchers will take light armor and bows. Dawnguard will take crossbows. Mages will take staffs and unarmored clothing. Everyone, however, likes jewellery and accessories.
  • The default chance is 15% to try to purchase an item. This chance is doubled for your own Faction Summons. When you leave and your game 'unloads' the location (this happens when you are five or so locations away) the chance can happen again. This means that the more you travel, the more you will sell.
  • Stock your Armories with a variety of items available for all Classes to get the highest chance of Faction characters to make purchases.

  • Killing any character that belongs to a Faction will earn you reputation with their enemies, as well as reduce that Faction's gold. The Faction themselves will be greatly upset by this!
  • Combat will make you hated, and the Dragonborn swiftly becomes hated by Bandits and other enemy Factions, which may then begin sending Hunting Parties if they have enough gold.
  • If you kill a member of your own Faction while you are highly regarded, you will lose 2x, 4x, or even 8x the regular amount. This translates to a lot of gold to keep in good with a Faction you are killing. A hero will have a hard time keeping their reputation while in the Dark Brotherhood.
  • You gain or lose half the normal reputation when a Follower or Faction Summon makes the kill. If you chose to make your followers fight for you, you'll still gain reputation, but half as quickly. It's feasible to amass an army and still build reputation and gold.
  • You can also donate gold to any Faction you belong to for reputation and to boost their gold. Sell the loot from dead Faction enemies, and donate it to your Faction.
  • Sold items through the Armory will gain you some reputation too, about 5% of its value.
  • The Reputation states are "Revered", "Respected", "Neutral", "Hated", and "Reviled". You usually become Hostile at Hated.
  • When a Summon dies, you lose 10 Reputation. It's possible to lose all favour with a Faction if you invest too much Reputation in your Summons, without having any spare in case they all die. If you have 0 reputation left and lead 10 members to their deaths, you'll go directly from Neutral to Hated! You would then need to donate to redeem yourself.

  • Learn new Greater Powers to summon Faction mercenaries daily, who will follow you until dismissed or killed.
  • Summons cost you between 150 to 800 gold, depending on the type of unit and Faction.
  • As a Greater Power, you can summon one unit per day per unit type, and over multiple days can summon an infinite amount. If you summon every day, and keep your troops alive, you can field as large of an army as you like.
  • Use these Summons to help fight off reinforcements or ambushes. Beware, as summons increase the chance that your party will suffer an Ambush event itself.
  • Build a combined force by leading multiple Factions, such as the Imperials and Thalmor, Volkihar and Stormcloaks, Orcs and Bandits, or even combinations of three Factions or more. Your Faction Summons will play nice with each other, allowing strange combinations such as Falmer and Forsworn.
  • Summons will not be forgiven by their usual enemies, so be sure to dismiss any Falmer or Vampires before coming into town.
  • Dismissing a Summon will give you back 100 gold.
  • Each unit has a different reputation cost to summon, between 15 and 40. If you don't have at least this amount of reputation, you cannot summon the unit.

Faction Gold
  • Each Faction has a gold amount that it uses to fund warfare events.
  • You can prevent Factions from being able to fund warfare events by reducing their gold into negative amounts, by killing them faster than they can recover. This is easier for Bandits, but harder for Thalmor.
  • Factions each gain a random amount of gold each day.
  • You can help Factions gain gold by keeping their Armory well-stocked so they are hard to kill. In addition to surviving longer, whenever a character purchases an item from the Armory, the Faction also gains 1/3rd of its base value.
  • (In the future, I may add extra blessings and curses depending on Faction gold totals. For instance, if a Faction has over 5000 gold, they might buy a blessing to further strengthen their forces. Oppositely, they may be paid some extra gold to suffer a curse, which will help take a faction out of negative gold.)

The 14 Factions

The people of Skyrim! Anybody who belongs to any of the Holds' crime factions will be considered a Folk, if they are not already an Imperial or Stormcloak.
You get this Faction by default, meaning you can immediately summon Adventurers to fight alongside you as soon as you first visit the Faction Hall.
When you donate items to this Faction's Armory, they can be bought by almost any townsperson in Skyrim.

The Folk will dynamically ambush their enemies, who are the Bandits, Warlocks, and Giants.

Folk Units
  • Adventurers
  • Heros

The hardy and native people of Skyrim, proud of their traditions and Atmoran heritage. Firm in their beliefs of Man's inherent strength, and hostile to claims of foreign supremacy. You can lead them after pledging an Oath to the Stormcloaks in the Civil War quest. Depending on Civil War progression, town guards may be of this faction.

The Stormcloaks will dynamically ambush their enemies, who are the Imperials and Thalmor.

Stormcloak Units
  • Soldiers
  • Battlemages

The military force from Cyrodiil, present in Skyrim to bring the Stormcloaks to heel and thereby consolidate the power of Man in the Imperial City. You can lead them after pledging an Oath to the Imperials in the Civil War quest. Depending on Civil War progression, town guards may be of this faction.

The Imperials will dynamically ambush their enemies, who are the Stormcloaks.

Imperial Units
  • Soldiers
  • Battlemages

The foreboding and domineering Elven invaders. You can join them if Heimskr has been slain, the preacher of Talos in Whiterun. You will also need to kill a lot of Orc Tribals before they will trust you enough to lead their forces.

The Thalmor will dynamically ambush their enemies, who are the Stormcloaks and Orcs.

Thalmor Units
  • Wizard - A Thalmor Wizard
  • Conscript - Two Bosmer or Khajiit wearing light armor, usually a ranged fighter.

The wild and cruel people of the Reach, intent on reclaiming their ancient territory by violent means. You can lead them if you have completed the quest 'No One Escapes Cidhna Mine' for Madanach. You will also need to gain reputation with them by slaying many of the common people of Skyrim.

The Forsworn will dynamically ambush their enemies, so long as their enemies are in the Reach, who are the Folk.

Forsworn Units
  • Warriors
  • Briarhearts

The anarchic and brutal people of the hills and ruins. The game begins with them not being your enemy, although certain Bandit guards will attack you if you come too close. This means that until you've killed many Bandits, you can now safely travel through ruins and forts. But once you begin to slay them, they will gain their usual aggression. You can always provoke them.

Become a Bandit leader by proving your infamy the Bandit Way: accumulating a very large bounty! Only after getting a largest bounty above 10,000 will the Bandits be willing to let you lead.

The Bandits will dynamically ambush their enemies, the Folk.

Bandit Units
  • Bandit
  • Bandit Boss

The necromancers, conjurers, and rogues mages of Skyrim. The game begins with you not being their enemy, but rather neutral. You can lead the warlocks after proving your mastery of magick: By trapping over 20 souls and learning over 20 spells.

The Warlocks will dynamically ambush their enemies, the Folk and the College.

Warlock Units
  • Acolyte
  • Magus

The disciplined and hardy Tribal Orcs of Skyrim. You can lead them once you've won 5 brawls and are considered an Orc Bloodkin. You can also gain their reputation by slaying Thalmor.

The Orcs will dynamically ambush their enemies, the Thalmor.

Orcish Units
  • Hunter
  • Warrior

The warriors of the divine, intent on eradicating the Vampire menace from Skyrim. You can lead them after gaining 150 Dawnguard reputation. You can gain their favour by slaying Vampires around Skyrim.

The Dawnguard will dynamically ambush their enemies, the Vampires.

Dawnguard Units
  • Soldier
  • Armored Troll

Volkihar Vampires
The blood-hunters of the night, intent on reigning supreme over Skyrim and all of Tamriel itself. You can lead them after completing the quest 'Bloodline' for the Volkihar court. You must also gain their favor by slaying Dawnguard.

The Vampires will dynamically ambush their enemies, the Folk and the Dawnguard. They will only ambush Folk during the day, but Dawnguard they will ambush at any time.

Volkihar Units
  • Thrall
  • Vampire

The ancient race of subterranean mages. As you slay the Falmer, you will gain their favor. You can lead them after learning how to smith Dwarven weapons and armor. You will also need to avoid destroying Dwarven automatons until you have joined their faction. Afterwards, Dwarven automatons will treat you as an ally.

The Dwemer will dynamically ambush their enemies, the Falmer.

Dwemer Units
  • Sphere
  • Spirit (Yes, it's an actual Dwemer warrior spirit, complete with fancy beard!)

The cruel and mindless mutants who once were Snow Elves. Gain their favor by taking vengeance upon the Dwemer. You can lead them after discovering one of three Great Lifts between Blackreach and the surface. You will need to gain their favor by slaying Dwarven automatons, and avoid killing Falmer. Afterwards, Falmer will treat you as an ally.

The Falmer will dynamically ambush their enemies, the Folk and the Dwemer. The Dwemer they will ambush at any time, but the Folk they will only ambush at night.

Falmer Units
  • Warrior
  • Shaman

Giants (v3.1+)
The mostly reclusive, but sometimes murderous Giants of Skyrim. Shall you earn their favor, so that you can wreak havoc on the battlefield? Giants will now ambush travellers in Skyrim, forcing you to intervene. Your can earn their favor by donating gold and treasures.

The Giants will dynamically ambush their enemies, the Folk. They will only ambush outdoors.

Giants Units
  • Mammoth
  • Giant

College (v3.1+)
Even the powerful minds of the College cannot escape the Faction Warfare that has gripped Skyrim. For them, their war against the Warlocks rages ever on. When you travel into the Warlock dens and covens in the cracks and caves of Skyrim, you may find the College Mages at your side, ready to help you end necromancers or other mages who have gone astray.

The College will dynamically ambush their enemies, the Warlocks.

College Units
  • Apprentice
  • Mage

Where do the character appearances come from?
Nearly everything comes from Vanilla LChar_ or Lvl_ actor lists. If you have other mods that add new varieties to these lists, this mod will respect those changes! For instance, if you have Extended Stormcloak Armor Variety active, then the Stormcloak soldiers you summon or see in ambushes will include armors from that mod.

I'd love to see more mods that add LChar variations, or otherwise randomize the hair and face of leveled NPCs.

Mod Configuration Menu (MCM) Settings

In v3.0 I added an MCM! You can scale things like Ambush chance, whether or not Ambushes can happen in towns, how many NPCs should spawn, and Armory purchase chances. I will be expanding the MCM as I develop the mod, but there's already a lot of control that you have to customize Faction Warfare for your play style.

In v3.2, I also added a Quick Settings spell to let you choose from Preset settings. This was designed for my Xbox players, but is also useful for PC as well. You can choose from Light / Standard / Hardcore settings.

Author's Notes
Welcome to the Spring 2022 version of the mod description! I've been expanding the mod, now it's at 14 Factions. That may sound insane, and it is. I found an efficient way to produce these Factions, and dedicated serious hours to making this.

Along with my mod "Realm of Lorkhan", I consider these my flagship works.

I am very open to plugins, patches, and translations. Anyone who wants to make add-ons has full permissions from me! You can let me know once you've done it, and I will try to boost visibility of what you've done.

Consider supporting my creative obsession through Patreon. I like to add each new patron's name into Realm of Lorkhan's "Book of Patrons". Support over the years has definitely made an impact on my life, just as I hope I make an impact on yours!

You can also leave a quick tip on Ko-fi!

This mod has been designed to be highly compatible with other mods that may also affect the same factions. Consider it as an extra 'layer' can can sit on top, or underneath, other mods too!

The main potential point of conflict is in Faction hostility. I add the player to Factions when they become a leader, as well as add the Player Faction as an 'ally' of Factions if they are at a certain friendliness level.

The mod works through scripts that are applied in-game as a cloaking magic effect on nearby characters, avoiding unnecessary edits to the character files directly. This has the added benefit of respecting characters added by other mods, which may belong to Factions already included here. Other modded characters may be ambushed, get reinforcements, or send hunting parties against you!

It should be highly compatible with Wilderness Event mods such as Immersive World Encounters, and play really quite well with them! I'm running this mod on my own game.

I've been playing Skyrim at War and v3.1 of Faction Warfare has new features that are intended to add to the large-scale battles! Now you can scale Faction Warfare's Ambushes, Reinforcements, or Hunting Parties up to 20 NPCs. SAW's Imperials and Stormcloaks can now battle huge numbers of Faction Warfare NPCs.

None that are relevant as of version 3.2!

Recommended Mods
More Notification Messages - Show up to 30 messages, so when you gain, lose, reputation and gold during battles, you can see all the notifications. Also enables you to set how long each notification is displayed for.

Weapons Armor Clothing and Clutter Fixes
- Sometimes robed NPCs will get naked when this mod equips jewelry on them! You need this mod to avoid that.

My 2016 mod Slow and Freeze Time! - This mod lets you slow down time with a spell, and appreciate the random battles in all their glory. I created that mod with the idea of a 'commander' play through, but I never found any other mod that lets you do hired summons. Well, eventually I made that mod myself, and here we are!

I tested Real Names, and it seems to work great! The Adventurers will get real names, and I believe many of the others will too.

Rogues 'n Raiders uses vanilla factions and as result is effortlessly compatible!

Same with Vampire Clans and Bloodlines (although my mod treats vampires and Volkihar as identical -- you'll lose Volkihar reputation for killing other vampire clans, but can still enjoy the diversity of vampires).

Skyrim At War is in my own load order, and comes highly recommended. You can increase the number of NPCs that Faction Warfare spawns in ambushes, reinforcements, and hunting parties to produce massive battles of regimented Stormcloaks or Imperials against vast armies of my Falmer, Orcs, Thalmor, and others.

Armory of Tamriel v2.0 adds re-textured armor variants. You might like to use it to add more Faction armors, that still resemble what those factions use!

Thanks to Anuiel for the Dwemer Beards!

Thanks to our wonderful Skyrim modding community for the inspiration, and to those who have encouraged me to always push forwards!