Skyrim Special Edition
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About this mod

Ever wished you could switch between different sets of combat animations mid-battle? With this DAR-based mod, you can.

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Obviously inspired by the gameplay of Nioh/Nioh2,  this mod lets you assume different "Combat Stances", which will change the moveset (animations) of whatever weapon you have equipped.
Switch between 4 different animation sets at any time with the simple press of a hotkey, even in the midst of combat.

Basically, think of this as a "lite" alternative to PCEA that does not rely on Nemesis or FNIS and doesn't require you to stop the game and go through an MCM menu to change animations. Requires Dynamic Animation Replacer.

This mod is NOT an animation replacer! Just like PCEA, it's a framework for you to mix and match your own "Stances", that means you'll have to find the animations you want to use from other modders. Here's an example of what you could do with it:

Do you want Stances to have an actual impact on your character's combat performance instead of just being cosmetic?
Look no further than AshenShugarII's amazing Add-On to this mod, which adds fully customizable buffs and debuffs to each Stance, giving them different advantages and drawbacks in specific combat situations!
Using the two mods together truly makes Stance use situational and adds a layer of strategy to Stance switching, so I would really NOT want to use this mod without the add-on!

  • You can now select (via MCM) between the old method of 1 Switch Hotkey + Directional movement or having a separate hotkey for each stance (for example: press "1" for High, "2" for Mid, "3" for Low Stance, "4" to return to neutral). This will hopefully help those who had problems using this mod with a controller
  • for SE version: fixed bug that prevented MCM menu from showing up
  • removed debug notifications, added colored buffs & symbols for each stance
  • blocking animation to refresh idle pose will now only play when you're NOT attacking, so you can "Stance Dance" between attacks uninterrupted


  • Added support for controller/gamepad input. In the Mod's MCM menu, open the input menu under "Settings" and set your device. I can't test if this works myself so if it still doesn't, please let me know in the comments
  • Added the option to NOT use a custom hotkey (in case your control scheme is already loaded with hotkeys from other mods). If you unselect the Stance switch hotkey, the mod will detect and use your "Draw Weapon" button to change stances. Example: Draw weapon while moving forward -> High Stance, sheathe and re-draw weapon while moving to the side -> Mid Stance
  • Added Notifications (top left of the screen) telling you which Stance you've just switched to
  • When going back into the "neutral" Stance, your character will now briefly assume the blocking pose so the correct idle will show up 
  • plugin is now form44
  • renamed folders to avoid conflict with other DAR mod

  1. Make sure you have DAR installed. It's required for this mod to work!
  2. Install this mod, put it below DAR in your mod manager.
  3. Like any other DAR mod, inside the mod folder you'll find a subfolder structure of meshes/actors/character/animations/DynamicAnimationReplacer/_CustomConditions/. In there are 3 folders that will contain the animations for your extra stances. You'll need to drag any animation files you want to use into one of these folders.
  4. For NEMESIS users only: if you have the "Gender specific animations" option in Nemesis activated, you'll need to put all your animation files into the male and female folders within the DAR subfolders! Example: If you're playing a male character, any animations you want to use in High Stance go into ".../_CustomConditions/6001/male/" instead of  ".../_CustomConditions/6001/". Each time you add animations to these folders, don't forget to run Nemesis (with gender specific option checked) or you might get a  dose of T-pose.
  5. Make sure there are NO CONFLICTS between this mod and your main DAR folder or any other DAR-reliant mods you've loaded: If you have another DAR subfolder with the same number in some other mod, the one that comes first in your mod manager's load order will not work! If there is a conflict (it tells you that a "_conditions.txt" is being overwritten) you'll have to rename the subfolder of this mod to a different number that doesn't already exist.
  6. Start game, open the mod's MCM page and customize it to your liking.
  7. If you're uninstalling the mod, please deactivate it through the MCM menu first to stop the script. You'll also have to turn it off and on again from there once if you rebind your game's movement controls.

How Switching between Stances works depends on which option you select under "Hotkey Options" mod's MCM menu main page.

1) Switch Hotkey
Pressing the Stance Switch Hotkey (set to T by default, customizable on the right pane of the MCM page) will take you to another stance depending on your movement:

  • T while moving forward -> "High Stance"
  • T while moving to the side -> "Mid Stance"
  • T while moving back -> "Low Stance"
  • T while standing still -> return to default animations

2) Separate Hotkeys
Each Stance will be activated by its own hotkey (customizable on the right pane of the MCM page), NO MATTER if and how your character is moving while you press it. With default keybinds:

  • 1 -> "High Stance"
  •  -> "Mid Stance"
  • 3  -> "Low Stance"
  • 4  -> return to default animations

3) No Hotkeys (use Draw/Sheathe)
If you select to not use a hotkey, the mod will work like with option 1) except whichever key you've bound the "Sheathe/Unsheathe Weapon" action to will function as the Stance Switch Key:

  • Draw/Sheathe while moving forward -> "High Stance"
  • Draw/Sheathe  while moving to the side -> "Mid Stance"
  • Draw/Sheathe  while moving back -> "Low Stance"
  • Draw/Sheathe  while standing still -> return to default animations

Basically everything, from your weapon idle pose to movement and of course attack and block animations.
As of V1.1, I've included a set of (vanilla) animation files in the 'High Stance' subfolder that will simply swap your 1H and 2H animations, essentially doing what Unlocked Grip or CGO do but without the need for any behavior modification. This is just to give you a head start and by all means you're meant to remove/overwrite those with your own desired set of anims.

Since the conditions this mod uses only refer to its own .esp file, it is compatible with pretty much any other DAR mod.
For example, as long as you can find enough animation files to use, you could give any of the custom weapon types that Animated Armoury adds its own set of 4 stances: You would just need to create extra folders that combine the conditions from the AA weapon type and the stance you want to give it.
Example: If you want to use a second set of rapier attack animations, make a subfolder (beware of naming conflicts!) and create a "_conditions.txt" in it that contains the following:

IsEquippedRightHasKeyword("NewArmoury.esp" | 0x000801) AND
HasPerk("Stances - Dynamic Weapon Movesets.esp" | 0x0001EE18)

This way, any animations you drop into this folder will only trigger when you BOTH have a weapon of the type rapier equipped AND switch into High Stance.
Using the same method, you can also combine this mod with my other animation mod, Combo Animation Framework, to give each of the for Stances their own combo moveset. 
I've added a premade folder structure, condition files and a merged plugin in the 'optional' files section. This will also show you ow to "fuse" other DAR mods

How does this mod work?
There's a very small script running that just adds different perks to your character depending on which stance you switch to. DAR then does all the work by checking if you have any of the perks relating to the 3 extra stances and changes the game's animation path accordingly.