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Skyrim Changing Seasons [WIP]

dynamic seasons seasons

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#1
ah42

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The purpose of this mod is to provide dynamic seasonal variation to Skyrim. This means changing visual scenery, weather, and what-have-you depending on the in-game calendar.

 

I'm definitely going to need testers at some point for this mod... Better start getting some people following development now so I can work out the kinks before posting it officially.

 

 

 

I've already gotten a Papyrus script to do the functionality, but it failed in several ways due to the limitations of Papyrus. However, SKSE is giving me that needed functionality. (I'm in the very early stages of the SKSE plugin, so nothing functional there yet.)

 

This is still in the very early stages, but I am attempting to include things like mod compatibility from the start, so that conflicting textures wouldn't become a user problem, but a developer problem, in a user-patchable way (like PerMa's XML configuration files).

 

Once I get the framework developed, the hard part will be documenting and choosing the different seasonal variations for the same model, and in which months to use them. I haven't even begun down that path. (I'm doing my devel with a subset of meshes from around the Riverwood/Whiterun area.)



#2
ah42

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Download Files

 

Proof of concept - Papyrus Script Attached File  SCS_Test.zip   8.49KB   16 downloads

 

Go somewhere in the Riverwood area (I picked meshes specifically from this area to test). Console "set gamemonth to 1"

 

Then start walking towards Whiterun... and while you're at it, try picking some flowers or crops in the farms when you get there. Because those things grow so well in the winter, you know?



#3
ah42

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TODO List

(and who suggested it)

  • SKSE Plugin
  • Compatibility with other mods
    • Choose best model variant based on a given load-order
    • Use as much models already present in a given load-order instead of re-distributing to reduce download size
    • Investigate other potential conflicts
    • No Snow Under The Roof (statmonster)
  • Seasonal weather
    • What about precipitation? Does Skyrim have wet and dry season?  Are summers hot and dry or hot and rainy?  Does most of the snow fall in winter or are spring and fall also snowy on occasion? (statmonster)
  • Seasonal sun positioning (Tuomir)
  • Seasonal affects on the player
    • Seasonal Affective Disorder if player stays inside too much in winter?
    • Race-specific affects: Argonians (are they cold blooded?) might be more active in summer (Stamina bonus?). Khajits and Redguards might be better adapted to dry heat given their desert home climates. Nords might be better at enduring cold in winter. (statmonster)  (Watch out for Frostfall conflicts)
  • Integration with Frostfall (http://www.nexusmods...im/mods/62679/?)
    • Should this be a separate mod, or a function of this?
  • Respawn rate of plants
  • Respawn rate of animals (hibernation?)
  • Seasonal changes to merchant items: Merchant inventories might repsawn slower in the winter too as everyone hunkers down and trade comes to a crawl. (statmonster)
  • See if we can find the current LoadOrder earlier than kMessage_PreLoadGame, just in case.


#4
statmonster

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Sounds very interesting.

 

For textures, as a player, I would like to have 3-4 separate texture folders: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter.  Then depending on the month, the engine would pull the texture from the appropriate folder.  Perhaps you could use a series of virtual folders like Mod Organizer does to select one folder and hide the others - also consider how MO uses profiles - you could have a profile for each season.

 

Should this be done for meshes too?

 

Then as a player I dump my favorite textures and meshes into each season's folder (duplicating if I want one look in more than one season).

 

Other considerations:

  • Frostfall - changing exposure by season.
  • Weather - obviously summer is warmest, winter coldest and springs and falls milder.  But what about precipitation? Does Skyrim have wet and dry season?  Are summers hot and dry or hot and rainy?  Does most of the snow fall in winter or are spring and fall also snowy on occasion?
  • No snow under the roof - having accumulated snows on roofs and paths might seem essential in winter but silly in summer.
  • ENB - Clearly the quality of light in summer and winter are different (though I'm far from being able to intelligently discuss this).  ENB Manager and Changer by Legend Aeternus (http://www.nexusmods...rim/mods/24402/) could provide a handy way to quickly switch from bright summers to gloomy winters (or whatever a player wanted). This could not only change lighting to match the quality of the exterior light but also allow for mood setting if you want some seasons reflect a bright and cheerful soul and others a dark and gloomy countenance.
  • Different racial effects from seasons - Argonians (are they cold blooded?) might be more active in summer (Stamina bonus?). Khajits and Redguards might be better adapted to dry heat given their desert home climates. Nords might be better at enduring cold in winter. (do they already get this in Frostfall?)
  • Spawning - maybe cells respawn rates could be different in different seasons to reflect how quickly crops, flowers, etc. grow. Quicker respawns in spring and summer with slower ones in winter - might make it more challenging for hunter/gatherer types to live off the land in the winter if it did not respawn very often. Merchant inventories might repsawn slower in the winter too as everyone hunkers down and trade comes to a crawl.

 

Anyway, some ideas.



#5
mtrredux

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I assume you will provide frostfall 3.0 support...or even put off full fledged mod development until 3.0 is released?

 

I also mentioned in your mod thread that options for yearly variation would be nice.

Like mild, normal, and harsh toggles in an MCM.

Something that would affect the hi low constraints on all temp distribution.

And maybe even a weather sensitive local variation of this as well.

So like a tier system...first tier goes by the yearly variation caps.

Second tier is local contextual within that range?

 

 

Here is something you might check out...not sure but you may find it a useful aid in your dev process.

http://www.nexusmods...im/mods/62346/?

 

I have not tried your papyrus version yet...but kudos for such a creative endeavor. 


Edited by mtrredux, 08 March 2015 - 08:59 PM.


#6
mtrredux

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  • "Seasonal Affective Disorder if player stays inside too much in winter?"                                                                    

Speaking from my own preference, cabin fever would not be a priority feature.

I think if you do implement it it should be optional, as well I think it should be sensitive to factors like companion/marriage status.

So if you still socialize indoors you get a resistance bonus.


Edited by mtrredux, 08 March 2015 - 09:25 PM.


#7
ah42

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For textures, as a player, I would like to have 3-4 separate texture folders: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter. 

 
This is at the core of what I'm working on right now. I initially thought about path switching directories depending on the season, but that would require providing a full set of meshes/textures, and that would also limit compatibility with other mods that also provide their own models.
 
I have a configuration file format worked out to specify which alternate model to use for each of the 8 seasons (4 primary seasons, and 4 transition seasons), with extensibility in mind. Only if the alternate model isn't provided in the vanilla game would I need to distribute it. If another mod specifies and provides different model, we can use that instead.
 

  • Frostfall - changing exposure by season. Already implemented on my other mod, but I'll need a better way to integrate them. I suspect there will be people who want the Frostfall enhancement without necessarily using the changes this mod provides. Also, I'm not sure what changes Frostfall v3 will bring.
  • Weather - Already on the TODO... but you've got more detailed ideas, this is great.
  • No snow under the roof - Added Mod Compatibility to TODO
  • ENB - ENB changes may be beyond me at this point, but added to TODO
  • Different racial effects from seasons -  Frostfall applies exposure based on frost resistance, so yes to a degree... but good ideas. Added to TODO
  • Spawning - .I already try to disable plants that are "out of season" Adding the merchant bit to the TODO

Good ideas. Keep 'em coming!



#8
ah42

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Speaking from my own preference, cabin fever would not be a priority feature.

I think if you do implement it it should be optional, as well I think it should be sensitive to factors like companion/marriage status.

So if you still socialize indoors you get a resistance bonus.

Haha, yes, well this thought was more or less brought on by my own (albiet mild) seasonal depression. I actually get it worst in March. It was more or less just something to think about. Granted, it's not like people spend *that* much time indoors in the game, anyway.



#9
Mattiewagg

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If you are going to have the proof of concept script up there, please include the .psc (source files) so we can read it easier. There are functional decompilers out there but they're not perfect. I'm more interested in the script than seeing the effects. Or rather, I'd prefer to read it first before seeing it in action.



#10
mtrredux

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Also hope there would be no conflict with these mods.

http://www.nexusmods...im/mods/44091/?

http://www.nexusmods...im/mods/27563/?

http://www.nexusmods...im/mods/31968/?

http://www.nexusmods...im/mods/51472/?


Edited by mtrredux, 08 March 2015 - 10:07 PM.






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