The mods in this section can help make Skyrim feel more realistic, which can greatly enhance your role-playing experience.
Many of these mods will also make your game MUCH more challenging, so install these mods with caution.
I have divided the Realism mods into separate sections devoted to Combat, Overhauls, Economics, and Survival mods.
The last section contains Misc. realism mods, along with links to other mods in my list that also make the game more realistic.
The mods in this section completely overhaul combat in the game, making it much more realistic - and much more difficult to master.
"This mod and all it's features is a port of my Oblivion mod. It
is intended to be a combat simulator (as much as I can mod Skyrim to be
anyway) based on my 30 years of medieval western heavy weapons (SCA
tournament) fighting. I was King twice and hold the rank of Duke and
Knight in the SCA.
And the PACE of the combat will possibly be slower than you are use to in games. But it will also be brutal and you will actually feel the weight in your attacks and blocks!"
Version 10.0 Changes:
Arwen Notes: This mod results in the most realistic melee combat of any mod I have tried, but it is perhaps a bit more realistic than what all but the most hardcore users may want. You also have to change the way you fight, or combat will be very frustrating.
Important: Make sure that you follow the instructions in "Duke Patricks Combat - Installation Read Me 3of3.doc." You have to do a bit more than just install this mod with the NMM. (There are also notes on editing the "aadpCombat" text file.)
This mod is now working much better for me. I did however have to make some adjustments to be able to use this with my current character, since the Character Creation Overhaul mod reduced some of my character's stats to the point that Duke's mod was initially unplayable for me:
1.) My Stamina was only 60, so I kept running out my Stamina after just
1 or 2 Melee hits (or even a block or two), and then I got creamed.
I fixed #1 by using ACE - Combat Skills' BYOG feature to add 25 more Stamina, pushing her Stamina up to 85; and I also increased her Stamina Regen Rate my 25% (since Stamina was reduced too much by the Character Creation Overhaul).
I then edited Duke's "aadpCombat" file, making the following changes:
Fatigue Effects v.1.4 (08/25/12) - by rohverK:
"This mod creates a more realistic fatigue system, every action you do spends stamina or magicka, resulting in physical or mental fatigue. And depending on how exhaustion you had been missing factors such as speed, strength, magic resistance, skills power, and at lower levels result in disorientation or stagger."
"This mod modifies Dovahkiin and all NPCs, creating a more realistic, complex, lore friendly, responsible and strategic system in battle and outside battle."
The Racial differences are all shown at the download link page.
Version 1.4 Changes:
Compatibility: Do NOT use this mod with Duke Patrick's Combat mod, since his mod also adds fatigue effects.
Arwen Note: This mod affects not just the Player, but also the NPCs and Creatures as well. Now running makes you tired; as does drawing a bow (they both decrease your Stamina). This mod makes combat a LOT more strategic, as you cannot just jump into combat without thinking.
Overhauls are large mods that alter the game in many ways. They are often modular (made up of several esps), so you can use just the parts that you want (although each module often covers way more than a single aspect of the game).
"ACE is a collection of mods which can be run independently of each other. ACE aspires to brings more depth and balance Skyrim while maintaining its original feel. It does so by adding depth to the skill trees and adding new functionality. Below is a list of each module with an explanation of how it alters Skyrim."
1. ACE - Archery: What!? Only ONE type of ranged weapon in Skyrim?! Not
anymore! Now two different types of bows!
Compatibility: There is a large selection of compatibility patches available (under files) for other Weapon Mods.
Arwen Note: Contrary to its name, this Overhaul does way more than just affect combat. For me, one of my favorite features is the BYOG (Balance Your Own Game).
I'm currently using ACE - Enchanting, ACE - Magic, ACE - Smithing, ACE -
Speech, and the BYOG esps.
Economics of Skyrimv.1.3 (08/30/12) - by Thomas Kaira:
"You have arrived at your local Blacksmith, and are shopping for new
toys, armor, whatever it is you want. Ever notice something odd? Like
how every single blacksmith seems to have exactly the same items in
stock? Well, that’s because they do.
See the download link for the full details, as the above is only a portion of all that this mod has to offer.
Arwen Note: This is a fantastic mod! And is one of the best economic overhauls I have ever seen. If want a more realistic game, this mod should be near the very top of your download list.
"The three main components of Frostfall are Hypothermia, Cold
Water Survival, and Camping Equipment.
Arwen Note: This is a VERY cool mod! Note that you have to read a copy of "The Survivor's Guide to Skyrim" (which can be found in any inn in Skyrim) before this mod will be initialized. That in itself makes this mod more immersive, but the book is not only the mod's starting trigger . . . it is an actual survivor's guide. and it is also how you configure the the optional parts of the mod.
Arwen Note: This next mod. by Chesko (the creator of Frostfall) has not been released yet, but it will likely become my choice in a Hunger/Thirst/Drink mod once it is available. [The download link currently will just take you to the mod's discussion topic.]
Last Seed - Primary Needs and Primitive Cookingv.x (future) - by Chesko:
"Last Seed will be a hunger / thirst / sleep mod that has a strong emphasis on simplicity while still retaining immersion and increasing the importance of food and water. Expanding the existing cooking mechanics is also a desired focus."
"Adds working fishing poles, nets, Dwarven boomfishing, working fishing gear, and many other fishing-themed goodies to Skyrim. Stop trying to grab fish with your bare hands! Look for a free pole and net in a rowboat on the Riften canal, or talk to local general-goods vendors and apothecaries in Riverwood, Whiterun, Riften and Windhelm."
Changes in v.0.92:
Compatible with Improved "Fish - New Fish - More Spawning" and other mods which add "CritterFish"
Arwen Note: This mod isn't technically a survival mod, but it it survival related, so I included it in this section. It also adds more variety of fish, as well as some relics (some are treasures, and some are junk, that you might also pull in)
This section contains general realism mods, most of which make the game a bit more immersive.
At the end are links to other mods in other sections of my list that will also make your game play a bit more realistic.
"Misery and despair have haunted you all your life. Just when
you thought it couldn't get any worse, you've been arrested and thrown
in the dungeons. Your trial was supposed to be weeks ago, only nobody
has come for you. It's been so long since seeing daylight you no longer
know what month it is anymore. The dungeon is cold, damp, and worse
still, you're running out of food. At least you have that leak in the
wall for water. It seems as though you've been forgotten, soon to rot
away and die. The eight have forsaken you! Or... have they?
Arwen Note: This mod is perfect for users like me, who begin the game many times, and want to role play the beginning in a different way.
"The crafting system is one of Skyrim's better features, but for thieves and archers, there's not much use for the system. Light armor is dead easy to come by in already finished forms, but arrows can sometimes be scarce in the types you may want. Lockpicks have been known to be somewhat scarce too, yet are relatively basic to construct. Ars Metallica aims to fill in some of the basic issues I had with the crafting system by doing the following:"
Arwen Note: This mod expands and enhances the crafting system . . . especially if your character is a thief or an archer (which improves the game balance for these players).
"Have you ever wanted to turn those quest markers off but
couldn't because the quest description doesn't give you any indication
of where to search for your objective, so you're forced to blindly make
a beeline to that marker, taking the wonder of exploration out of it?
That's why I've created Better Quest Objectives! What I've done is
edited nearly 250 quest objectives/descriptions, spanning over 160
quests, that have super vague or even non existing descriptions of where
you're supposed to head next."
In the above situation, the quest objective is changed from: "Talk to
That Guy" to "Head to This Town at the eastern base of This Mountain and
talk to That Guy." This will allow you to progress the quest by
actually navigating your map and not blindly following the quest marker.
Warning! This mod has not been updated for months, so it is currently not compatible with the Unofficial Skyrim Patch or any of the official DLC.
Arwen Note: I am not currently using this mod, as I have the Unofficial Skyrim Patch installed, but I'm hoping that it will at some point be updated to be compatible. This mod finally allows me to leave the quest markers turned off! Before installing this mod, I would often have to turn the markers back on, because it was often nearly impossible to complete a quest without them.
"Dynamic TimeScale adjusts the game's TimeScale based on the
Arwen Note: I have configured my DTC with the following settings:
"Installs a craftable map that can be equipped like a shield, block
to bring the map up to look at it better. Lowers when running.
v4.0 adds equip-able treasure maps - craftable if have the original in your inventory
Arwen Note: This mod adds a 2D leather map that is available from various vendors (it is a realistic old 2D type map . . . not a GPS map that pinpoints your locations.
"Radiance seeks to make your Skyrim experience a little more immersive by adding new world encounters and events that reflect the world and your impact on it. This mod adds over 30 encounters, and with Radiance, you may:"\
- Bump into fellow adventurers you've helped in the wild, having
adventures of their own!
Arwen Note: This mod adds a lot of immersion, by making Skyrim's game world feel a LOT more alive.
"This mod allows you to drop lit torches to the ground when you can't spare a hand to hold it."
Version 2.0 Changes: