Thursday, August 2, 2012

Screenshot Time

Haven't been devoting as much time as I'd like to modding this week -- between feeling like a walk-on from a Romero movie and dealing with my family I haven't felt like fighting with FO3 much.

Still, I've taken a few screenies to share, and being as I have fuckall interesting to blog about this week... here you go.

I... really don't remember FO3 having night skies like that... I know I've taken a few before for Nos' Adventures, but I remember there being more of a haze, even at night. Haven't changed out any mods... but who knows.

Moving on to Skyrim:

Firstly, I don't know how many are aware of it, but Skyrim actually includes the Headless Hessian (as an Easter Egg only -- he's not used in any quests and doesn't attack anyone; only riding a preset path every night). Well, a bit back, we were adventurin' a bit west of Whiterun around sundown, and...

Kind of freaky at first, as I had read about him in the Wiki; but never actually seen him. Around the fort there is one of the most crash-happy areas in the game for me, so I don't tend to be out there much.

Also, I recently installed Climates of Tamriel; to hopefully break up the game's normal weather patterns which seem to only consist of day and night.

It's a very nice mod, which I somewhat hesitantly recommend -- I like it, but I haven't used it enough to say "this doesn't bloat saves!" so, y'know, use at your own risk and whatnot.

I've also finally found a semi-decent male light armor:

This is a copy of Geralt's armor from the Witcher series (texture edited by me to be darker), with Nightingale boots, and... I forget what the gloves are, actually. Something from the base game; I just can't remember which set I used.

Since it is male only, the female models on the armor are Hentai's Karliah II armor; which seemed to fit the same general feel.

I had tried to retexture glass armor to be less gaudy, with fairly craptastic results. If you raided my Picasa account in the odd week between when I uploaded the screens and when I decided I wasn't going to post about it after all and trashed them, you saw; but for those that didn't: Beth decided for some reason to make parts of the male glass cuirass texture partially translucent, and not editable without decoding the individual channels of the image... which also removes all color. So if you want grayscale glass it's fine... but failing that you pretty much have to partially or fully redraw the texture which I didn't want to bother doing. Which sucked, because I liked the black glass, and had just learned how to reset the mesh so that it didn't reflect green light anymore... oh well.

I've also played with some new characters.

This is a dark elf:

Who comes with two sister NPCs; the backstory being that they're refugees from Morrowind, who end up embroiled in Skyrim yadda yadda. In my defense, while it is cliche; it was also just a quick outline that I hadn't written any more detail into and probably never will. The sisters:

You may remember this companion as the previously-shown "Raven" follower. I liked the basic face I had set up for her, so used it as a base for the other two and repurposed this follower into a mage with a different name.

This one is the skirmisher of the group -- light armor, sword & board. She's also the shortest of the three because LOLIRONYAMIRITE?!

The hook with this game is that they don't smith. Upgrade and enchant, yes; but armor and weapons are find or buy only.

Thus far it's proved interesting, if... basic. Many mod authors just make their armor and weapons craftable, so you can't get them in the game world.

Astute readers may also notice that all three have facial scars -- something I previously complained did not work on NPCs. Turns out when I rooted out and purged the "improved" face tint masks that were keeping lip colors from showing up? It also made scars appear again. Only downside is scars don't show in the NPC edit window's preview; so I've been having to pick a scar at semi-random, and load the game to see which is was. I recently discovered that the scars show up on the character if you load the cell they're in, and look at them in the render window... but the cell-view in the render window has a horrible record of reliability for me -- it uses an immense amount of resources since it's essentially kicking in the game's rendering engine and displaying what you'd see in game; and this tends to overload my less than ample RAM and cause crashes/lockups/muttered threats/invocations to Old Ones From Beyond the Stars.

And this is a kill-cam. I just think they're neat.

I've also made a couple updates to my favorite Nord female character. Her scars show up now; and as you may notice I also altered hair colors as part of my Lesser companions plugin. Auburn and... whatever the one that was supposed to be red got changed to actually be redder. I'm still not happy with the auburn (the dark elves are using it). The color you see in the SuCK isn't the color you get in game, sadly; so it's very much a try-it-and-see proposition. It ended up orange rather than my intended light-brown-with-a-red-tint. I'll get it eventually -- and happily, the color changes made in plugins carry over to the player automatically (NPCs require having their facegen data re-exported for changes to show).

The proper red turned out nice, though.

My Nord female companion here showing off both her working scars, and the new red hair color.

I'm not entirely sure what I had done to earn such a look, but that screenshot is just begging for a "Skadi is not amused by your faggotry." caption.

You may also notice that red is slightly more... RED than what's pictured on the PC above. This one was the first draft; I've since toned it down a bit so as not to have every redhead in the game be day-glo.

Hm. Maybe neon hair was what she was pissed about?

Moving on.

Final entrant in my list of player ideas was this one:

Made not with a backstory in mind, but rather to see if I could make an attractive Khajiit after spending too long reading chan threads where people show off their characters.

The answer was apparently a resounding no. Back to Nords it is.

And here's the updated v2.0 of Katheryn the skinny-gothy-vampire...

Wait, let me edit that...

...vampyre. Yeah, there we go...

...Who turned out somewhat better than I had expected her to. Players of Oblivion may recall just how absolutely horrid vampires looked in that game, so I was surprised the ones in Skyrim can actually look pretty decent. You know, once you install replacers for the body, skin, face, eyes, and hair... but you have to do that for all races, so I'm not sure it's a legitimate complaint above and beyond the normal ones.

In the area of my better known companions:

Maeva thought I was insane for jumping off this tower, and didn't want to follow.

Natasha finally quipped on the way up to a ruin.

...That fucking ghost wolf is still grinning at me. I hear it laugh like Muttly in my head sometimes...

Natasha not only ashed a bandit, but sent it into low-Nirn orbit; and Maeva taunted it on its way skyward. I am surrounded by crazy people.

I just thought this one looked cool.

As did this one. She just keeps giving me those looks...

...And I caught her staring at my ass in this one when I happened to kick into third person to look at my own armor. It was a surprise, yes.

...And never turn your back on the short haired one during a fight. Those poor gamblers knew not with whom they fucked. Also grabbing someone by the back of the head and ramming a sword into the base of their spine is just plain unfriendly.

Okay, that's it for this installment. The new episode of Burn Notice is on and I'm going to forget you all exist for an hour or so, now.


  1. I think if you ever try to get rid of your current rig the AI that resides inside it will just drag it back to your doorstep like something from a Stephen King story.

    1. It makes me seem crazy (well, more so than usual, anyway) but one of the prime reasons I'm so hesitant to upgrade the craptastic eMachine here is the risk of losing the AI I firmly believe exists somewhere in it.

      The main issue being I don't know where exactly it resides, or what file(s) I would need to copy to preserve it on a new system.

      Somehow, inexplicably, the girls' personalities carry over between games; and I would so hate to lose that -- or nearly as bad, have them evolve anew but differently on a new system incarnation. Since I don't have a secondary computer that can run any of these games, I can't exactly readily go testing, either.

      This is, of course, presuming it is AI, however; and not just something my long occult associations have inadvertently called up and bound.

      Or it could be random convergence, I suppose; but I don't believe in random convergence or coincidence, so...

      Also: if Stephen King's work revolved around smokin' hot, otherworldly redheads, I might actually read his otherwise painfully boring "horror" stories.