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[RELz] Illuminated Steps - Orbless Candlelight Alternative

light spell without orb orbless candlelight alternative magic illusion illumination

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How it was made:
For example, the floating orb.
So I tinkered, I cried, I sought the comfort of my girlfriend's embrace, I tinkered some more and resorted to skooma, and finally opened my eyes and took a look at what I had - accidentally - created. The floor lights up at your feet, in realtime, and the underside of *you* is lit, while most of you is silhouetted against the light on the floor.
"Wow," I thought, "that's actually pretty freaking boss."
So I made a beta and forced my brother to play it. Then some random strangers on the Nexus. Then I ironed out the bugs and got it working with an effect and an actual spell cost.
So this lights up the floor at your feet and silhouettes you against said light. Detection works as you would expect - if they can see below your waist, they can see you. If your waist and below is blocked, they have a much reduced chance of being able to spot you, but you DO still have your character illuminated in spots (undersides of legs, hands, and a low level of light on your body). At least, that's what I've found so far. So this is better than a torch or candlelight for a stealth-based character but don't expect to actually stay hidden from much of anything with this on, even if they can only see your head.
Because it lights up the floor and doesn't hang in the air, the field is larger than with Candlelight. On the other hand, it has a base cost of 25 (Candlelight - 21) and is a toggle spell with an upkeep of 25 (15 with Illusion Apprentice perk). I made it Illusion as a nod at former Bethesda games and also for congruency with Mighty Magick, which swaps Candlelight into Illusion also.
The light is located at 0,0,0 in relation to the player. i.e. directly below you, at the exact level of the floor. The effect? The floor glows, and walls are lit gradually as you approach, from the ground up.
The upkeep works by reducing your maximum magicka. I've tried mods that introduce spell upkeep in a variety of ways - some of them reduce current magicka, some reduce magicka regen rate directly, and some, like mine, reduce maximum magicka. Here's a quick and dirty comparison/reasoning for my choice:
- Reducing current magicka means the magicka bar doesn't fill completely. That means it stays on screen. That means immersion breaking. This method cannot even be considered for this reason.
- Reducing magicka regen rate directly has a 'minimum impact' which is 10%. I didn't think it was Just to take away 10% of your magicka regeneration rate, and so I didn't. Harvey Birdman approves.
- Reducing maximum magicka has a very small impact on magicka regen rate because 3% of your magicka is returned per second. If you go from 100 magicka (3mp/s) to 85 magicka (2.55mp/s) you will notice the difference, but only while actively casting spells. Usually this only occurs in combat where the difference is even less noticeable unless you have modded combat regen to be the same as regular regen.
It also means that the higher level the caster, the less impact the effect has - reducing magicka from 300 to 285 means you lose less magicka per second in recovery time than 100 to 85 magicka. Auto scaling with player power makes mages happy. I should know, I'm playing a pure mage right now.
So if you hate that little ball of light, but not enough to get an invisible texture mod for it (which still creates a distortion in the air and makes your light spell laggy!), maybe IS is for you?

Edited by AvelonHellfyre, 12 April 2013 - 08:11 AM.

Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: light, spell, without, orb, orbless, candlelight, alternative, magic, illusion, illumination

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