Skyrim Special Edition

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clackie1996

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clackie1996

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About this mod

This is my set of tweaks to the "Classic Classes and Birthsigns" mod created by Kearsage, and ported to SSE by watafuzz. I've streamlined the UX, and I've also changed all the effects to hopefully make each more desirable, so there aren't clear winners/losers. I also expanded custom class creation with abilities.

Permissions and credits
Introduction:



This mod is my personal changes to the "Classic Classes and Birthsigns" mod created by Kearsage and ported to SSE by watafuzz. New cleaned and improved ESM/ESL version created by user bobbyclue now available!

Compatible:
  • Alternate Start mods, such as Live Another Life. I’ve had issues with Random Alternate Start and Skyrim Unbound, they probably need a patch to work properly (this is lifted from the original mod, I have not tested these with my changes).
  • Custom Race and racial ability adjustment mods, such as The Chiss and Imperious
  • Perk overhaul mods such as Ordinator, SPERG. and TTRSO
  • Standing Stone overhauls such as Andromeda, Aurora and SSE Standing Stones Overhaul - Birthsigns will stack with any standing stones.
  • Mods that alter base skill levels for the player - should be compatible, just load them after to overwrite the 5 base skills this mod includes.
  • Really, this should now be compatible with anything because of my changes.

Description:
A "Select Class" book will be added to your inventory when you start a playthrough or install the mod for the first time, read it to (optionally) select or create a class and (optionally) select a birthsign.
There are a total of 21 classes to choose from, or you can create your own custom class. Each of the 21 classes are based on the classes available in Oblivion and Morrowind and are broken down into three specialities: Combat, Stealth and Magic. In my updates, I have moved things slightly further away from the Oblivion/Morrowind classes, but they are still pretty faithful to the spirit of the classes (I believe).

Specialization
All classes have a specialization; a +20 buff to the attribute associated with them. Combat classes give Health, Stealth classes give Stamina, and Magic classes give Magicka.

Major Skills
Characters start with all skills at 5, with racial bonuses on top of that. Each class has several Major Skills which are improved by 20 points. This represents your character’s profession or skills learned prior to the start of the game. Because of changes to how this effect is applied, your character will always be better with your majored skills - they are treated as if they are 20 points higher, but aren't actually 20 points higher. This means they'll technically level quicker and have a higher maximum potential. (A version that still uses SetAV to simply set the skill 20 points higher (as if leveled by the player) is now available, in the optional files).

The technical explanation - rather than using SetAV to actually change your characters skills (as it was previously), I changed the mod to use ModAV to increase their effectiveness by 20. This means that a skill you've majored in will still technically be at 5 (excl. race bonus) for perks and such, but in calculations it will be treated as if it is 20 points higher. This means you will ALWAYS be better using your majored skills than non-majored, because they have a 20 point boost and they are effectively 120 when you reach maximum. This unfortunately necessitates the use of something like Skyrim Skill Uncapper to get the full benefits once you are exceeding 100 in a skill, since the base-game caps calculations at 100. This also has the knock-on benefit of letting you quickly level these skills in the early game, despite them technically being a higher level, and will mean if you use something like Experience (recommended) you will not have to level up several times to start increasing your majored skills. It has the downside that you'll have to level your skill a bit before you can take perks in it. I think it's worth it, personally. (As stated above, a version that still uses SetAV to simply set the skill 20 points higher (as if leveled by the player) is now available, in the optional files).


Abilities
Each Class starts with an Ability that gives them a unique bonus over other classes. These are effectively perks, designed to make your gameplay a little more unique and allow you to build a character with some character. You can select any class ability (and also some extra unused ones, lucky you) during custom class creation.

Starting Spells
Characters that start with a Major Skill in one of the magical schools will start with one novice and one apprentice spell for that school. Some classes also gain a special bonus spell relevant to that class.

Birthsigns
Birthsigns are now totally divorced from standing stones; you can't choose to start with a standing stone effect, and birthsigns and standing stones stack together. Birthsigns are now just a small extra passive effect that further builds on your character's unique traits. I also changed the flavour text in the birthsign menus to talk about how people born under a sign behave, so you might pick a sign based on your character's personality, rather than the actual bonus (for roleplayers). These aren't from the lore or anything, I just came up with them based on the birthsign bonus.

Purely optional
You don't have to pick a class if you don't want to. You don't have to pick a birthsign if you don't want to. It's up to you. Skills will still start at 5, though, so be warned.


Ability List:
(Abilities marked unused are not used by any classes, but can be selected in custom class.)
Padding - 10% Bonus to light armour (Unused)
Sturdy - 10% Bonus to heavy armour (Knight)
Tough - +50 Bonus health (Warrior)
Boundless - +50 Bonus magicka (Mage)
Marathon - +50 Bonus stamina (Thief)
Ruthless - 5% Bonus to melee damage (Barbarian)
Smite - 15% Bonus to mace + warhammer damage (Crusader)
Swordsman - 15% Bonus to sword + greatsword damage (Unused)
Executioner - 15% Bonus to war axe + battleaxe damage (Unused)
Marksman - 10% Bonus to bow + crossbow damage (Archer)
Duelist - 20% Bonus to one handed with a free hand (Rogue)
Gladiator - 10% Bonus to one handed (Unused)
Champion - 10% Bonus to two handed (Unused)
Smooth - Persuasion is 20% easier (Agent)
Charm - 10% Bonus to illusion (Bard)
Stalker - 10% Bonus to sneaking (Nightblade)
Snake - 25% Bonus to poisons you make  (Assassin)
Remedy - 10% Bonus to restoration (Healer)
Ruin - 10% Bonus to destruction (Battlemage)
Balance - 10% Bonus to spells, One-handed when using both (Spellsword)
Commune - 50% Bonus summon duration (Unused)
Dragonslayer - 15% Bonus damage to dragons (also dragon priests, but this is a hidden effect, shh) (Unused)
Purifier - 15% Bonus damage to undead, including vampires (Witchhunter)
Mercantile - 15% Bonus to buying/selling (Pilgrim)
Martial Artist - 20 Bonus unarmed damage (Monk)
Nimble - 10% Bonus movement (Scout)
Spry - 75% Less fall damage (Acrobat)
Unconstrained - 50 Bonus to armor when unarmored (Unused)
Hearty - 50% Bonus health regen (Unused)
Potent - 50% Bonus magicka regen (Sorcerer)
Tireless - 50% Bonus stamina regen (Unused)



Class List:
Combat Classes

Archer
Archers are fighters specializing in long-range combat and rapid movement. Opponents are kept at distance by ranged weapons and swift manoeuvre, and engaged in melee with sword and shield after the enemy is wounded and weary.

Specialization | Combat
Major Skills | Archery, Block, One-handed, Smithing, Light Armor, Sneak
Class Ability | Marksman - 10% Bonus to bow + crossbow damage


Barbarian
Barbarians are the proud, savage warrior elite of the plains nomads, mountain tribes, and sea reavers. They tend to be brutal and direct, lacking civilized graces, but they glory in heroic feats, and excel in fierce, frenzied single combat.

Specialization | Combat
Major Skills | Archery, Block, One-handed, Smithing, Two-handed, Light Armor
Class Ability | Ruthless - 5% Bonus to melee damage


Crusader
Any heavily armored warrior with spellcasting powers and a good cause may call himself a crusader. Crusaders do well by doing good. They hunt monsters and villains, making themselves rich by plunder as they rid the world of evil.

Specialization | Combat
Major Skills | Block, Heavy Armor, One-handed, Two-handed, Destruction, Restoration
Class Ability | Smite - 15% Bonus to mace + warhammer damage


Knight
Of noble birth, or distinguished in battle or tourney, knights are civilized warriors, schooled in letters and courtesy, and governed by the codes of chivalry. Knights study the lore of illusion and enchantment to better command the battlefield.

Specialization | Combat
Major Skills | Block, Heavy Armor, One-handed, Two-handed,  Illusion, Speech
Class Ability | Sturdy - 10% Bonus to heavy armour
Bonus Spell | Courage


Rogue
Rogues are adventurers and opportunists with a gift for getting in and out of trouble. Relying variously on charm and dash, blades and business sense, they thrive on conflict and misfortune, trusting to their luck and cunning to survive.

Specialization | Combat
Major Skills | Block, One-handed, Illusion, Alchemy, Light Armor, Speech
Class Ability | Duelist - 20% Bonus to one handed with a free hand


Scout
Scouts rely on stealth to survey routes and opponents, using ranged weapons and skirmish tactics when forced to fight. By contrast with barbarians, in combat scouts tend to be cautious and methodical, rather than impulsive.

Specialization | Combat
Major Skills | Block, One-handed, Smithing, Alchemy, Light Armor, Sneak
Class Ability | Nimble - 10% Bonus movement


Warrior
Warriors are the professional men-at-arms, soldiers, mercenaries, and adventurers of Tamriel, trained with various weapons and armor styles, conditioned by long marches, and hardened by ambush, skirmish, and battle.

Specialization | Combat
Major Skills | Archery, Block, Heavy Armor, One-handed, Smithing, Two-handed
Class Ability | Tough - +50 Bonus health


Stealth Classes

Acrobat
Acrobat is a polite euphemism for agile burglars and second-story men. These thieves avoid detection by stealth, and rely on mobility and cunning to avoid capture.

Specialization | Stealth
Major Skills | Archery, One-handed, Lockpicking, Pickpocket, Sneak, Speech
Class Ability | Spry - 75% Less fall damage


Agent
Agents are operatives skilled in deception and avoidance, but trained in self-defence and the use of deadly force. Self-reliant and independent, agents devote themselves to personal goals, or to various patrons or causes.

Specialization | Stealth
Major Skills | Archery, Illusion, Lockpicking, Pickpocket, Sneak, Speech
Class Ability | Smooth - Persuasion is 20% easier


Assassin
Assassins are killers who rely on stealth and mobility to approach victims undetected. Execution is with ranged weapons or with short blades for close work. Assassins include ruthless murderers and principled agents of noble causes.

Specialization | Stealth
Major Skills | Archery, One-handed, Alchemy, Light Armor, Pickpocket, Sneak
Class Ability | Snake - 25% Bonus to poisons you make


Bard
Bards are loremasters and storytellers. They crave adventure for the wisdom and insight to be gained, and must depend on sword, shield, spell and enchantment to preserve them from the perils of their educational experiences.

Specialization | Stealth
Major Skills | One-handed, Enchanting, Illusion, Alchemy, Light Armor, Speech
Class Ability | Charm - 10% Bonus to illusion


Monk
Monks are students of the ancient martial arts of hand-to-hand combat and self defence. Monks avoid detection by stealth, mobility, and agility, and prefer to solve conflict by arrow or by fist.

Specialization | Stealth
Major Skills | Archery, Alteration, Alchemy, Lockpicking, Pickpocket, Sneak
Class Ability | Martial Arts - 20 Bonus unarmed damage


Thief
Thieves are pickpockets and pilferers. Unlike robbers, who kill and loot, thieves typically choose stealth and subterfuge over violence, and often entertain romantic notions of their charm and cleverness in their acquisitive activities.

Specialization | Stealth
Major Skills | Archery, Light Armor, Lockpicking, Pickpocket, Sneak, Speech
Class Ability | Marathon - +50 Bonus stamina


Pilgrim
Pilgrims are travellers, seekers of truth and enlightenment. They fortify themselves for road and wilderness with arms, armor, and magic, and through wide experience of the world, they become shrewd in commerce and persuasion.

Specialization | Stealth
Major Skills | Block, One-handed, Smithing, Restoration, Light Armor, Speech
Class Ability | Mercantile - 15% Bonus to buying/selling


Magic Classes

Battlemage
Battlemages are wizard-warriors, able to resolve most conflicts with either spell or sword. They are a deadly mix of scholar and soldier, supplementing melee attacks with elemental damage and summoned creatures.

Specialization | Magic
Major Skills | One-handed, Alteration, Conjuration, Destruction, Enchanting, Alchemy
Class Ability | Ruin - 10% Bonus to destruction

Healer
Healers are spellcasters who swear solemn oaths to heal the afflicted and cure the diseased. The ancient art of restoration is their ally, and the deadly art of destruction is their weapon.

Specialization | Magic
Major Skills | Alchemy, Alteration, Destruction, Illusion, Restoration, Speech
Class Ability | Remedy - 10% Bonus to restoration
Bonus Spell | Healing Hands


Mage
Most mages claim to study magic for its intellectual rewards, but they also often profit from its practical applications. Varying widely in temperament and motivation, mages share but one thing in common - an avid love of spellcasting.

Specialization | Magic
Major Skills | Enchanting, Alteration, Conjuration, Destruction, Illusion, Restoration
Class Ability | Boundless - +50 Bonus magicka


Nightblade
Nightblades are spellcasters who use their magic to enhance mobility, concealment, and stealthy Close combat. They have a sinister reputation, since many nightblades are thieves, enforcers, assassins, or covert agents.

Specialization | Magic
Major Skills | One-handed, Light Armor, Illusion, Destruction, Alteration, Sneak
Class Ability | Stalker - 10% Bonus to sneaking


Sorcerer
Though spellcasters by vocation, sorcerers rely most on summoning and enchantments. Unique to these mages is the bodily stamina to be armed with the thickest armor.

Specialization | Magic
Major Skills | Alchemy, Enchanting, Conjuration, Destruction, Restoration, Heavy Armor
Class Ability | Potent - 50% Bonus magicka regen
Bonus Spell | Bound Sword


Spellsword
Spellswords are spellcasting specialists trained to support Imperial troops in skirmish and in battle. Veteran spellswords are prized as mercenaries, and well-suited for careers as adventurers and soldiers-of-fortune.

Specialization | Magic
Major Skills | Heavy Armor, One-handed, Alteration, Destruction, Enchanting, Restoration
Class Ability | Balance - 10% Bonus to spells, One-handed when using both


Witchhunter
Witchhunters are dedicated to rooting out and destroying the perverted practices of dark cults and profane sorcery. They train for magical and martial combat against vampires, witches, warlocks, and necromancers.

Specialization | Magic
Major Skills | Archery, Destruction, Enchanting, Conjuration, Alchemy, Lockpicking
Class Ability | Purifier - 15% Bonus damage to undead, including vampires


Birthsign List:
The Warrior - Warrior's Prowess - 10% increased damage with melee weapons
The Lady - Lady's Care - Health and Magicka regenerate 25% faster
The Lord - Lord's Fortitude - Health regens 100% faster, but 10% more vulnerable to fire
The Steed - Steed's Fleetness - Move 10% faster
The Thief - Thief's Cunning - Pickpocketing, lockpicking is 10% easier
The Lover - Lover's Protection - 40 bonus to armor, no conditions
The Shadow - Shadow's Veil - Sneaking is 10% easier
The Tower - Tower's Stability - 10% reflect damage
The Mage - Mage's Wisdom - 30 bonus Magicka
The Apprentice - Apprentice's Zeal - 10% better spells, 10% weakness to magic
The Atronach - Atronach's Skin - 10% chance to absorb spells
The Ritual - Ritual's Oath - 10% bonus to restoration
The Serpent - Serpent's Bite - Poisons you make are 20% stronger



Differences between this mod and the original, straight up:
Fixes:
Bonus spells are now correct - in v1.53 of CCB the Healer and Knight spells given by the mod don't match the mod description or in-game menu description.
Included setting base skills to 5 right into the mod, rather than doing maths in the script like it was previously.
Since it now uses ModAV instead of SetAV, you don't need to use a new save file or be level 1 (although a new game is recommended). (This should still apply for the SetAV optional file, since it uses your current skill level +20 in its calculation now).
You can now select any ability for a custom class - in the OG mod you can't pick a class ability, you just get a +20 point bonus to an attribute and an extra major skill.
Made the text in the menus use less lines. I use Sovngarde, and text was running off the end. This is now fixed.

Rebalances:
Custom classes are fully in line with classic classes. Everyone gets a specialization (+20 attribute), 6 major skills, and an ability (and customs get to choose any of these).
All bonuses have been re-done. My philosophy with this was that the more specific the bonus is, the stronger. So Ruthless affects all melee weapons a little. Smite affects only one weapon type, so it's much stronger.
I've said it a few times already, but I'll explain it properly here; this now uses ModAV instead of SetAV. The mod previously did SetAV("Skill", 5(base level) + 20(if majored) + racial bonus(if applicable)). Say I majored in Heavy Armor and didn't get a racial, this would directly set my Heavy Armor to 25, as if I'd levelled it to that. This means if I decided to stop using heavy armor and start using light, it could theoretically overtake heavy and then what was the point of even majoring in heavy armor? Does my life-long warrior soldier's years of Heavy Armor usage mean nothing because I wore Light Armor for a few days? Phooey. Now, the mod does ModAV("Skill", 20). It adds a flat 20 bonus to the skill, which shows up green in your menu as if you had a potion or enchantment affecting it. The actual skill is still at 5, and will level as such, but in any calculation it's being treated as 25. This means if (to use the Heavy Armor example from before) I increased my Heavy Armor to 100, and then my Light Armor to 100 - my Heavy Armor would still have an advantage, because it's being treated as if it were 120. Your major skills will now always have an advantage over your non-majored ones, because they have a higher maximum potential, and are technically easier to level to get to the same benefit. I've not really done a good job of explaining this, but just trust me, I think it works a bit better. (As stated above, a version that still uses SetAV to simply set the skill 20 points higher (as if leveled by the player) is now available, in the optional files).


Streamlines:
Rolled secondary and class abilities from the OG mod together. You get less effects/benefits, but it is more streamlined and allows for picking any ability in custom class creation.
Took out the 4th era birthsigns (i.e. choose a standing stone at start) - to me these seemed pointless; when you have the choice between a permanent 3rd Era buff (that also stacks with stones) or just picking a standing stone, it just makes way more sense to pick the 3rd Era ones. This also means standing stone mods are compatible right out of the box.
No powers - This is just a personal thing to me, but anything that gives me a once a day power is pointless to me. There's no way to integrate a once a day power into a strategy unless you plan to wait 24 hours after every combat encounter. To me it's much nicer to have permanent passive buffs that will actually impact on my moment to moment gameplay and overall character build. None of the birthstones/abilities give any powers.



Recommended Mods:
Alternate Start - Read the book in the cell to get your bonuses before you start your new life.
Skyrim Skill Uncapper - Necessary to get any benefit from your skills being over 100.
Automatic Attribute Advancement - Makes your attributes scale to your stats - makes for a nice challenging early game, if you're into that kind of thing.
Experience - Ties your level to questing and exploring. Optionally also get xp for killing stuff (I generally have this on)
Andromeda - Overhauls the standing stones to be more interesting. Couples well with the birthsigns in this mod.
Morningstar - Overhauls races to be more minimal and not give any once-a-day powers. Again, couples well with the effects in this mod.
Vokrii - Overhauls skill trees with an eye for passives over powers, like the other things listed. You know what I'm gonna say. Also, specific mention; this makes Monk dope because it swaps unarmed into light armour, and includes some nifty perks.

Possible future improvements:
10 and 15 base skill versions, if people ask for them. It's not really hard to change it yourself in SSEEdit though.
Majoring in enchantment gives you a couple of basic enchantments; This is weirdly difficult. I'm probably going to ask the person who made the enchantment spell tomes mod how they managed it.
A version of this that uses SetAV to just set your skills to +20 as a nice starting bonus without giving the permanent +20 benefit - DONE, now available as an optional file install the main mod OR this file, not both.
More abilities; The menu's pretty chock-full already (looking at you, weapon abilities), but there's definitely more I could include. Feel free to suggest any ideas, if they fit with what I'm going for I might include them. I'd like this to be the definitive class/birthsign overhaul, so the more abilities people can choose from the better.


Let me know if you find any bugs - this is my first go at modding, and I think everything works, but I'm expecting some bugs. Mostly perks/effects not working like they should. Also hit me up if you notice any typos, I fucking hate typos.

This is built off of version 1.53 of Classic Classes and Birthsigns. All credits to the author of that mod and the kind soul who ported it to SSE. I just modified it the way I like it - this is not an improvement, just a change. Go check out the original before you download this.

The new improved version was cleaned up and converted to an ESM/ESL by this kind soul (without me even asking! What a guy!), so many thanks to bobbyclue for taking the time to do that.