Top 10 Best Skyrim Mods


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UPDATE (July 2): 5 more bonus mods added!

UPDATE (November 25): 5 bonus mods added!

In a matter of three days — and without the aid of mod tools — modders have already started pumping out mods for Skyrim. Some are practical, others aesthetic, but all of them can enhance your experience in some way — depending on your tastes.

Here’s a sampling of what the community has put out so far; check back with us for updates as new mods continue to be made.

If you’re a modder, come host your mods at Game Front!


Bonus mod 10: Better Females by Bella

If you like glamazons, this mod is for you. It replaces the default female face textures with high-resolution ones, with its most noticeable effects focused on the lips, eyebrows, and eye makeup. The mod applies to your female character and all NPCs.

Bonus mod 9: JaySuS Swords

This mod adds 51 craftable weapons to the game — mostly swords — and they are of exceptional graphical quality. Each weapon was hand-painted, with no texture usage, and every nick and scratch is part of the 3D model.

Bonus mod 8: Realistic Water Textures and Terrain

Do you think those giant slabs of water that are meant to be waterfalls seem unrealistic? Are you disappointed by the low-resolution textures used for water effects? If so, this mod is for you.

Bonus mod 7: A Quality World Map – With Roads

Finding yourself lost in the land of Skyrim? While GPS is out of the question, a map with some actual roads on it will surely help you find your way. This mod slaps some accurate roads on your map, while also providing better textures.

Bonus mod 6: SkyUI

Why a PC game was ever slapped with that horrifying console UI is something I’ll never understand. Fortunately, you can replace Skyrim’s awful default UI with this one, which is actually designed to be used with a mouse and keyboard. Shocking, I know.

Click to page 2 for more bonus Skyrim Mods!

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34 Comments on Top 10 Best Skyrim Mods

ADJ

On November 17, 2011 at 11:05 am

So Bethesda have been developing Skyrim for years, yet a week after it’s released, developers (unrelated to the development team) release mods that improve the game experience (especially graphics). Why didn’t Bethesda hire some of the mod developers, delay release for a week, and give everyone a better experience?

driver

On November 17, 2011 at 12:09 pm

They have to create a game that runs on outdated consoles as well as older PCs.

Khanquer

On November 17, 2011 at 2:01 pm

Bethesda isnt the one releasing the mods, the community of players are. Bethesda gives you the toolset with the game so you can make ‘modify’ it. There is a plethora of ‘mods’ already made by the community from dragon tatoos to wonderfully magical falling snowflakes.

Max

On November 17, 2011 at 3:02 pm

lol good point they did in a week what processionals that get payed loads did in a few years

CJ Miozzi

On November 17, 2011 at 3:47 pm

@ADJ:

While I like the mordant point you’re making, some of these are stylistic changes — they’ll enhance the experience for some people, but not everyone. It depends on personal taste. But you do make a great point — some of these things are no-brainers that should have been done by the devs.

Jazz

On November 17, 2011 at 10:50 pm

Nice mods, but I agree that if these mods could be done in a week and improve the graphics so much why weren’t they done and added as a high resolution option, or atleast Bethsada should offer to buy the mods and make them part of the official upcoming patch.

tekno

On November 20, 2011 at 9:38 am

You have to bear in mind (no pun intended) that a lot of these mods aren’t something Bethesda would put in a professional game. The FXAA mod, for example, a lot of people find repulsive. Adjusting the gamma sliders does not better graphics make.

You also have to remember that a lot of these mods hardly run with stability on high-end systems, let alone mass market — let alone consoles.

I’ll tell you what I want, though, is a gritty wilderness survival mod.

- Food and drink do not heal in battle. They’re eaten to survive. The longer you go without food and drink, the more your food/life are gimped. Food is more expensive, and goes bad in a day or two, thus discouraging the player from running out with a mountain of cheese wheels in his pocket.
- Cold/warmth gauge. The worse the weather, or the higher the elevation, the colder it gets. All armor has a ‘warmth’ stat, and adds an extra element of strategy, in that some of the heavy steel plate and such isn’t as warm as the leather and furs. Your life is ALWAYS decreasing — and the colder you are, the faster it goes. Bundled up outside Whiterun? You won’t even notice it. Naked atop the throat of the world in a Blizzard? You’ll be dead in two minutes. Fires restore warmth — such as those in dungeons, bandit forts, and giant camps. Fires can be stoked with chopped wood to make them hotter — chopped wood is already very heavy, so that balances itself. And Destruction-magic fire can’t help you. Explain it away with lore somehow.
- Sleep is required regularly. Pretty cut and dry. The longer you go without sleep, the more that ‘screen is blurring’ effect you see in events and during dragon attacks amps up. 50 hours without sleep? You might as well be tripping on mushrooms.

The mod necessarily disables fast-travel-by-map — leave the carriages in, but make them more expensive. The player is encouraged to plot a route carefully, plan and stock food and gear accordingly, and move swiftly point-to-point across an unforgiving landscape.

Memphis

On November 20, 2011 at 9:53 pm

@Tekno Fail.

1. Notice most of the recipes call for salts? Not only does the cold climate lead to less dampness, and therefore less mold and longer shelf life, and not only does cheese when stored in a leather bag keep for years as long as you keep moisture out and occasionally trim any paper thin layers of mold that might grow, but you forget how long humans can go without food before seeing any real hits to health or performance.

Sprinting should not tire you in 10 seconds while naked, Nor should armor, nor should swinging a sword slightly further then normal. Sleep deprevation.. what does it add? “Okay I cleared a tomb, time for bed or else I will get an annoying effect!”

Also, alchohal is a perfectly acceptable substitute for water in the Medieval area and prior, due to most alchohal being, MAYBE 2%, compared to modern 40-60-90. It was, infact, safer to drink then water.

And why should food be more expensive? In reality in such an area, people had (Maybe) a few denarii, IF THAT. Infact, many common folk would cut coins in divisions of 4 or 6 since that is how rare money would become.

Also, you fail to realize that yes, while cold can be bad, normal armor is more then adequate for pretty much 99.8% of the game locales. Not only did you have 65LBs of metal in a Suit of Steel Medieval armor (Or iron, or leather) but you normally had 20LBs of other padding, linen, etc designed just for the cold (And also to prevent chaffing and absorb impact via cushioning)

“Destruction fire cant help you, explain it away with lore somehow”
So basically what you want is a Cabella survival game then rather then an elder scrolls game? /eyeroll

WingNut

On November 20, 2011 at 10:57 pm

@Tekno

‘You also have to remember that a lot of these mods hardly run with stability on high-end systems, let alone mass market — let alone consoles.’

Just wanted to note how wrong this comment is. High end systems running Skyrim get to do all the performance modding like large address aware so they can use their 8-16 gigs of memory. In addition to that the performance hit to their processors for adding these things is talking about knowing framerates down from generally high values that overtake the capacity to see any ways.

Losing 15-20 fps when the game keeps running at 100+ really doesn’t mean anything other than they could be adding even more mods.

Any other issues of stability has to do with the mechanics of the engine itself and whether or not scripts are executing properly, not the performance of the hardware it is on.

tonio

On November 21, 2011 at 9:00 am

lol and why cant you just be thankful to bethesda for this great game and stop whining like idiots?!?
they give a construction set to allow ppl to share their work…

spoiled brats…

thx to the bethesda team, and to the modders!

Luther

On November 21, 2011 at 7:26 pm

I agree with tekno in fallout they added a survivle mode and this game would of had a lot more reply value added to it if it was added.

The game is amazing it does depend a lot on modders for its growth in the future, I hope someone with skillz feels the same as me and tekno and adds a hardcore survive mode to the game to make it seem more realistic or strategy oriented.

Currently playing on the hardest setting in the game and its still a cake walk.

Anthony S

On November 21, 2011 at 8:15 pm

I’d ask some of you to complain more, but I don’t know if that is even technically possible… Can’t you just be grateful for a wonderful game? Why didn’t the dev’s include X, Y, or Z? Ever think they were spending every minute of their working lives trying to make an immersive game that would provide hours upon hours of single player gameplay (dungeons, storylines, character dialogue, skins, textures, world locales etc)?

SassafrassHash

On November 21, 2011 at 8:19 pm

I dream to play this on the PC,but at least I have it on Xbox.

Paul

On November 22, 2011 at 4:09 am

No one is ever happy.

by: Max
On November 17, 2011 at 3:02 pm
lol good point they did in a week what processionals that get payed loads did in a few years.

Thats right max, the modders remade the whole of Skyrim AND made it better.

Ur a tit. And whats a processional ?

This game has been the highlight of my year anyway.

Unit3

On November 24, 2011 at 1:54 pm

a survival mod would be SWEEUTE!!!!

Oh sup with auto heal? It’s worse then the silly regeneration spell in Oblivion. I’m also playing on the hardest settings and I can still tank through everything, so much it’s almost yawning at times. Oh well, the game overall exceeds my expectation anyway, the dragon fights are epic :D

Mrknify

On November 27, 2011 at 7:41 am

Hello Modding Community.

I’ve come across some great modding tips and demos via you tube, but i have not found and real locations of the mods required, if we are doing wish lists here, I would love to see a .txt of what settings to change their locations, what files to download, and where to get them from.

these are some great things. along with them I would love to see updates for older mods due to steam(fail) patches. I have contacted Bethesda, they told me to bad it uses steam, and seemed to not care about consumers after they bought the came. That comes as a bit of dissapointment to me.

one last request. flying I’d love to see that.

Thank you Modders.

Meh

On December 10, 2011 at 2:31 pm

Big worlds equal big ups simple as that Bethesda never had the development costs of an MMO thus we see shortcuts, bugs, broken quests, messed up updates and an engine that runs on something from the 90′s. It was their failed attempt and throwing us a big fat crippled technology demo nothing more.

cheater

On December 16, 2011 at 6:24 am

@Tekno

I think mod like that could be fun but there is a lot of thing that need more tweaking. Like that coldness thing you mentioned, I haven’t seen even one lake fully frozen in Skyrim. It means that it is really that cold in there. Where I live, every lake is frozen and won’t break if you drive on top of it with a car. And still, if you are running all the time or playing ice hockey, you don’t reallt feel the cold anywhere else than in your face.

cheater

On December 16, 2011 at 6:27 am

meant to say “it is not that cold in skyrim”

Shock2k11

On December 21, 2011 at 8:49 am

@Tekno

That would be the most annoying crappy mod ever

ninja

On January 3, 2012 at 1:13 am

ok the reasons why a mod get doe so fast is cuz the professionals did most of the work. its easy to do a project when all the materials are there for u from the start, its hard to start from scratch. jeez get some brains ppl

Better Ninja

On January 3, 2012 at 4:40 am

^Yes, that’s entirely correct, even though your English isn’t.

However: Bethesda sucks at polish. There can be no doubt that the modders are just building on the foundation already in place, but they make it look so much better. Skyrim isn’t the atrocity that Oblivion was out of the box, but they would still be better off by hiring a few freelancers for a week just before launch.

mac

On January 4, 2012 at 8:48 am

I think that you guys should play fallout new vegas if you want survial mode, you could copy and paste a simple platform of that onto skyrim and I am working on a mod that adds 10 new armours(not retextures) but new armour and when the creation kit comes out I should be able to make some expansions into the other parts of tamerial

Meh

On January 14, 2012 at 1:30 pm

Elderscrolls 6 wish list:

1. Breast sliders

2. Zoneless massive world

3. Capes

4. More mounts

5. Socketable weapons ala Diablo and the removal of refilling charges and ammo loaded bows.

6. Non scaled enemies, comes Bethesda just make the impossible not scaled to player levels.

7. Either fix vampirism or remove it.

8. Bring back all the guilds including Fighters this element of removal was BS.

9. Fix see through textures and floating trees problem.

10. Whatever else I missed!

bob

On January 15, 2012 at 4:39 pm

Half of these mods are worthless, making HD textures or retexturing things already in game is a waste of time unless its originally horribly done.

your assss

On January 18, 2012 at 7:33 am

kiss my assssssssss skyrim is the best

Mr_Eff

On January 25, 2012 at 7:03 am

am i the only one that thinks a pokemon mod would be funny o-o
i thinks so..
Y_Y

merfan

On February 24, 2012 at 11:07 pm

I can’t wait to see next elder scroll
but one of the bethesda’s faults in skyrim is the main quest
because it was too short…!

Reality

On February 25, 2012 at 3:55 pm

i really like the idea of a survival mod, and if one is indeed ever finished, i hope it has each element optional, instead of all or nothing.
e.g. one could keep the crosshair, and yet not have to sleep; or perhaps for a nord, cold weather damage could be turned off, and for a dunmer, it could be turned back on to simulate bio-regional realism

thank you modders <3

cormac

On January 7, 2014 at 7:07 am

Is there a dislike button? This is bull

gamerguy25

On January 31, 2014 at 4:53 am

@Tekno, I agree with you, that mod would be great to have, there is a mod on nexus mods thats adds cold survival. The fast travel ability is great but it is not something that needs to be in the game because there isnt any of the missions that are time sensitive.@ADJ Yes Bethesda had this game in development for years and modders did a week what the dev team didnt. That is because the dev team also had other costs and things they were having to deal with that the user community didnt have. If they did everything that is lore friendly in skyrim that the modders have, then they game would have been alot more expensive so that could make their money back from it.

gamerguy25

On January 31, 2014 at 5:01 am

@Meh, the guilds are still there, the fighters guild(called companions) in Skyrim, the mages guild(College of winter hold) and then of course the thieves and dark brotherhood are the same. and Getting rid of ammo filled bows and rechargeable items would be a big mistake, your asking for an easy game thats not meant to be easy, if it was it would not be as fun or as immersive, i do believe however that they need to add a bit more of a realistic arrow recovery to the game. And yes, a mod that makes sleep required would be great. Yes I can go without sleep(in real life) for 2-3 days without any caffiene pills or the like but thats also sitting at home doing my normal routine, thats not traveling the countryside for countless miles battling bandits, climbing mountains, eluding predators and the such. That my friend is something that would make even someone with Sever ADHD and Insomnia fall asleep for a few hours every day.

wizzlewazzle

On February 19, 2014 at 11:42 am

I would’ve thought “Moonpath to Elsweyr” would be on here.

Diego

On April 20, 2014 at 4:27 am

So… Where’s Interesting NPCs?