Bethesda might not have the most stellar reputation right now — given their track record in modern times — but there’s no denying the fact that they still have a bunch of brilliant and imaginative titles under their belt to this day. One need only look at the sheer enduring popularity of Skyrim to understand why this is the case.
The fifth entry in the popular Elder Scrolls series is still going strong to this day as one of the most-played games around, mainly due to its incredible modding support. The game might’ve released in 2011, but the sheer amount of mods that tweak — if not completely improve — the overall experience are so immense that most people will never notice the age of this game.
For players who want to try out Skyrim on PC, here are ten of the best mods that are a must-have for this title.
10 Alternate Start — Live Another Life
With this mod, players can choose the background of their choice without having to be a prisoner over and over again. The manner in which these alternate lifestyles are integrated into the main game is pretty deft, making for a rather unique and enjoyable experience for fans who wish to start yet another life in Skyrim.
9 Climates Of Tamriel
While there’s no denying the fact that the land of Skyrim is a beautiful one, there are times when the vast expanse can become somewhat boring to explore at times due to the lack of any unique weather.
With the Climates of Tamriel mod, players can enjoy new weather effects that can spice up one’s exploration while simultaneously making for a ton of picturesque moments as well.
8 Apocalypse — Magic of Skyrim
Thankfully, with the Apocalypse mod, around 155 new spells and incantations are introduced into the main game, allowing players to role-play exactly like the kind of character they wish to be.
7 A Quality World Map And Solstheim Map — With Roads
The map of Skyrim in the base game is fairly serviceable, but one can’t help but imagine what it would be like if the map of this game was more detailed, accessible, and just conveyed more useful information at a single glance.
This mod realizes the various minor issues that people might face with Skyrim’s overworld map, and ends up redesigning it so that the routes are clearer and the landmarks are more defined.
Bethesda games have consistently been problematic when it comes to the UI in their games, which ends up being a burden to cycle through due to their rather unintuitive design.
Thankfully, with the SkyUI mod, the interface is way more optimized for PC gamers, allowing them to navigate the menus using their mouse and keyboard with the greatest of ease.
5 Skyrim HD — 2K Textures
Skyrim might be one of the most beautiful open-world games to have ever been designed, but there’s no denying the fact that the game hasn’t really aged all that well. People who end up playing the 2011 release will notice that most of the textures are notably muddy and don’t really hold up all that well in modern times.
Thankfully, this problem can easily be mitigated with the Skyrim HD mod, which ends up adding 2K textures that significantly improve the visual quality of the title and allow players to experience the beauty of Skyrim with the freshest coat of paint that’s available.
4 Sofia — The Funny Fully Voiced Follower
There are various fan-made mods of Skyrim that add new and unique followers to spice up one’s experience with the game. However, out of all these followers, one has to admit that Sofia is easily the most popular and well-developed one of the lot.
Featuring excellent voice acting and some truly well-written dialogue — almost overshadowing Bethesda’s character writing in many aspects — Sofia is a great companion mod to add in the game if the base game’s companions end up being rather boring and one-note.
Skyrim‘s modding community has definitely gone above and beyond the call of duty when it comes to integrating a ton of total conversion mods that allow for a fresh and unique experience, with Falskaar being one such mod that easily stands in a class of its own as an excellent fully-voice conversion mod for fans of Skyrim.
Any player who’s tired of making the same old trek through the land of Skyrim over and over again would definitely enjoy playing through a new world with more than 20 hours of gameplay, supplemented by voiced dialogue and great level design.
However, it would be impossible to talk about total conversion mods and not mention what is easily one of the most notable mods for the game by a country mile.
Enderal is the product of a ton of hard work and love for Skyrim, culminating in what is easily one of the most expansive conversion mods made for a video game. The fact that players can enjoy another 100 hours of gameplay with this mod alone — to say nothing of the DLC that was released for this mod as well in the form of Enderal: Forgotten Stories — is a testament to how many people absolutely adore Skyrim in all its forms.
1 Unofficial Skyrim Legendary Edition Patch
If there’s one thing that’s synonymous with most Bethesda games, it’s that the majority of these games are full to the brim with a ton of bugs that have become less and less endearing over time, with people being less forgiving of the broken states in which most of these games are released.
So, for people who want the smoothest possible experience with Skyrim without having to deal with a slew of bugs that can range from annoying glitches to game-breaking events, the Unofficial Skyrim Legendary Edition patch is the first mod that should be installed for this otherwise brilliant game.