Skyrim Mods: Escape From Vanilla

Skyrim Mods: Escape From Vanilla

Quite a long time ago, I contemplated doing a cinematic series of playthrough videos of Skyrim. However, there were so many of them, and I ended up so immersed in the game, that I only a made a few before giving them up. However, I still enjoy them as a bit of fun and some of the first videos I ever made in Skyrim.

Unmodded (aka vanilla) Skyrim is to this day one of the best fantasy RPG games in existence. After years and years of playing it, however, a lot of people turn to modding the game to keep it fresh and interesting. There are so many amazing mods out there, you can pretty much keep upgrading and changing your Skyrim experience endlessly into a virtually new game every playthrough.

My early modded Skyrim was a lot of fun.

My early modded Skyrim was a lot of fun.

Back when I originally made these videos, I was a far less experienced Skyrim modder, still using old classics like RealVision ENB, Better Females by Bella, and Apachii Hair before moving on to more sophisticated and updated mods. I remember how excited I was just to make Ralof not look like an old zombie face with Better Males – YoungerFacesMergedWithMenByGeonox. I didn’t even care that my character had a discolored neck seam, I was just happy she didn’t look like a toad anymore. Not to mention those high resolution textures, oh my! (Now I have textures that put those to shame, but still, they were awesome at the time.)

To this day, the first recommendation I give to anyone trying to get a handle on the basics of Skyrim modding is to first watch Gopher’s Skyrim modding videos, and then go to the RealVision ENB page. RealVision is a good ENB that works for most people without straining their computers too much, and an ENB is the number one best way to make your Skyrim graphics look better.

I tell folks interested in learning about modding to watch Gopher’s videos, and then follow the instructions on the RealVision ENB page from start to finish, carefully, step by step — and use the recommended mods. It’s basically the baby steps guide to doing a gentle and relatively safe overhaul of your Skyrim graphics to upgrade them for the modern era.

Is this going to result in the most spectacular looking Skyrim game ever? No, it is not. Will it look pretty darned cool and a hell of a lot better than vanilla? Absolutely. Plus, it’s a lot bloody less confusing than the very extensive S.T.E.P. project or just diving in willy nilly and trying to figure out everything from scratch.

Wade into the waters gently, read everything carefully, watch lots of videos, and don’t be scared to try again if your first attempts at modding Skyrim or any other game are a fail. A little work, trial and effort, and soon you’ll be so happy with your game you’ll be making stupid videos all over the place. Just because you can’t stop admiring your modding handiwork.

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