About this mod

A massive project to greatly improve the appearance of countless static 3D models in Skyrim. Basically, this is my attempt to make the Skyrim architecture, clutter, furniture, and landscaping much nicer.

Permissions and credits
  • Ukrainian
  • Turkish
  • Spanish
  • Russian
  • Portuguese
  • Polish
  • Mandarin
  • Italian
  • German
  • French
  • Czech

Current Version: 2.08 - July 3, 2018

Thank you to those who have donated to me.
You make Nexus the best modding site around!

Important: SMIM on the Nexus uses a nice Mod Manager installer. If you want a complete .BSA archive version, download SMIM from Bethesda.net.

Skyrim is the greatest open-world RPG ever created and includes fantastic 3D character and creature models. However, playing the game for even one hour made me notice Skyrim also contains many ugly 3D models. More precisely, there are quite a few low-polygon static meshes that comprise the architectural elements, clutter, furniture, and landscape objects.

It would appear that while the artists devoted a large amount of time to create the races, creatures, armors, weapons, and major buildings, the more "boring" 3D models that make up the game world were severely neglected.

Hence, this mod edits many 3D models to improve their appearance and to fix many of the ugly seams and other oddities. I started in February 2012 with the ultimate goal of improving about 500 of the worst offenders. In June 2014 750+ meshes have been completed; my goal has been exceeded with over 15,000 placements of said meshes! In October 2016 900+ meshes are improved, with over 30,000+ placements! Cool.

Still, SMIM still has more to do! Improving meshes takes a long time, and I'll release incremental updates to include new 3D models as I finish them.

Want to know more? I wrote book about SMIM! Click the image below to read a larger version of "Initiates Guide to SMIM". It'll even boost your stats!

The Nexus Mod Manager (NMM) is recommended for proper installation. If you use NMM, just click the "Download with Manager" button and install!

The Unofficial Skyrim Special Edition Patch (USSEP) is HIGHLY recommended. Install order doesn't matter since USSEP is a BSA package meaning SMIM's loose files will always take precedence.

SMIM uses many SMIM-specific new textures that are included in the "textures-smim" folder to separate them from vanilla textures. These SMIM-textures always override any other texture replacers you are using. What this means is most of the meshes I edit will use MY textures, not those of other texture replacers you have installed. This isn't a big deal since my SMIM textures are designed to match well with the base game and other high-res texture packs. Just be aware that when using SMIM, you will have to use my textures for most SMIM'd meshes.

Also, SMIM includes several edited vanilla textures (I fixed errors with them), which do conflict with texture replacers. You just have to decide if you want my fixed vanilla textures or your favorite texture replacer's versions. For example, if you install Skyrim HD first then SMIM, you'll get SMIM's fixed vanilla wood post texture. If you install SMIM first then Skyrim HD, you'll get Skyrim HD's wood post texture. None of this hurts your game. Just remember to generally install SMIM first and then texture replacers.

    Try out my fancy, super-great Main Menu Spinning Skyrim Emblem mod!

    Special Edition mods: Other really great Special Edition visual mods to complement SMIM:
  • Skyrim Flora Overhaul SE - Greatly improved plant, tree, and flora textures. But the framerate hit is considerable.
  • Ruins Clutter Improved - A wonderful, high quality mesh and texture mod that adds 3D chains to chandeliers, improves the candles, and other ruins related improvements.
  • Detailed Rugs - Greatly improved rugs. Very lore-friendly.
  • Rugnarok - A alternate mod to Detailed Rugs. Also very high quality and lore-friendly.

Skyrim 2011 mods that work fine with SE: Other really great visual mods to complement SMIM:
  • Real Roads - A fantastic mod that makes all the cobblestone roads actually 3D. A truly fantastic visual improvement!
  • Jewels of the Nord - This compliments my high-polygon rings with high-resolution textures.
  • High Quality Food and Ingredients - A nice collection of food and ingredient textures. Many of these SMIM already improves (won't conflict and SMIM will take priority), but this mod has great powder and moon sugar textures. Some textures are different than vanilla and a matter of preference.
  • SkyFalls and SkyMills - Adds distant animated waterfalls and windmills. Fantastic! Install before SMIM and let SMIM overwrite the windmill files.

See Changes tab for a full list of versions or see a per-file changelog by clicking the Files tab and viewing the changelog.

What is the performance hit?
For me, it is zero. In 2013 I was running a 3.3GHz i2500k Intel CPU with a nVidia GeForce 680 with no performance hit. Users with slower machines may take a hit. I have no interest in making low-polygon models. Every model I've included is more detailed than vanilla. A few of my meshes are a LOT more detailed, some even overkill perhaps. Maybe I'll go back and reduce polygons at some point. For now, try my mod, note where your FPS drops (if anywhere) and manually delete certain of my meshes if you desire.

What textures do your models use?
I use the default vanilla textures whenever possible so that texture replacers will work fine with my mod. However, some models require me to make custom textures to fit my new awesome 3D models. In this case I use my judgment to decide which texture source is best: vanilla, Skyrim HD, or a new custom-made texture by me. What this means is you can't simply use a texture replacer to replace textures for my objects. But all my non-vanilla textures are quite high-resolution. See the texture replacer section above for more information.

I don't like one of your 3D models or textures. How do I solve my issues?
Well, if you don't like a certain 3D model I've included, you can delete it manually either before or after installation. You'll have to find it yourself and remove it. If you don't like my textures I'm afraid you're stuck with them since other texture replacers won't work for most of my 3D models. If you ask nicely I could perhaps make an alternate texture more to your liking.

Will you improve/fix a certain 3D model?
Maybe, post in the comments and tell me what you want fixed and why. But don't post spoilers!

Why don't you just enjoy the game as it was made?
Because I'm OCD. I notice seams, low-polygon models, and other offenses to good artistic design. It's my burden really. I wish I was ignorant of all this, but alas, I know too much...

  • See Credits page for full list of credits.
  • Thanks to the whole NifSkope team over the years. Without their years of effort no-one would be able to edit .nif files! Thank you!
  • Thanks to NifUtilsSuite by skyfox et al. Without this tool, I would have no way of editing Skyrim collision. Thank you!
  • Bethesda for creating awesome games with irksome flaws that we modders obsess over.

Tools used: