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statmonster

Lighting, Weather & ENB

Question

What lighting and weather mods do you like with SR?

 

I had been using Cot 2.1 (https://skyrim.nexusmods.com/mods/17802) with RLO 4.0.7c (https://skyrim.nexusmods.com/mods/30450) but it was kind of dark at night and in interiors.

 

I upgraded to CoT 3.0 and RLO but now it looks like CoT has been recalled for bug-stomping so I'm just running RLO.  The nights seem very nice with this - perhaps too bright to be realistic but very pretty.

 

(CoT 3.0 Winter seemed very nice - I assume it would make for a much tough start using Frostfall and RND as Whiterun, Riften ,etc. would be so much more inhospitable.)

 

I've also been using Skyrim Project Optimization 1.4.

 

No ENBs yet, and I'm not sure I want to take the performance hit to include one - plus there seem to be so many options that it's not clear which to choose and which play nicely with which weather and lighting mods.

 

What are other people using?  How do you like it?

 

Do you generally use a weather mod (which one?) or the vanilla weather system?

 

What about for lighting?  ENB?

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Must say those screenshots look very impressive. Right now I'm just using the "vanilla" ENB preset while I'm finding one I like as I'm not in the mood to convert my old one (was for like... 0.114 or something, think that was about the time I had to stop playing around with modding) but that looks interesting for sure.

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Looks good. For the more VRAM starved of us, you should consider a 1k version as well - DDSopt helps a lot.

 

Sent from my Nexus 4 using Tapatalk 2

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I only used 2k because well.. habbit.

In this case there really is no point in 2k.

The only difference I can see is a slight variation between the relative distance between glowing spots and also how wide they are.

The actual quality is not really visible due to some weird...blackish texture that is on top of the glowmap to make it blend in better with the rock.

 

I already use the optimal compression based the the STEP settings of DDSopt. (BC3/DTX5)

so a 2k file is about 5.5 Mb.. which is comparable with other 2k files I have already DDSopted.

A 1k version is about 1.33Mb like other 1k textures.

 

There are 2 files so I will let people test the 1k version unless they REALLY want a 2k version just to feel good about themselves!

Just throw me a pm if you are interested!

Also people who do not use RLO are welcome!

 

If I get enough good feedback and requests I might just release it as a standalone... even though I think it is really silly to have just a pair of textures as a "mod" >_>

 

Also glad that you like the screenshots Vond! :D

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I haven't found an ENB that i'm satisfied with yet for the new RLO + COT + Skyre combo.  I tried Rezerect's .153 version, its mostly good but there are graphical artifacts.  The old Skyrealism cinematic .119 doesn't really go well with COT + RLO i've found.  It's too bright in some places and not bright enough in others.  No ENB is better, which is a bummer.

 

Will try the other one listed in this thread.

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Okay in relation to the previous talk about Shimmermist cave and the... rather horrible texture that is used to simulate some sort of gem glow in falmer caves.

 

..............snip for shorter quote.......................

 

I am interested in a few "beta testers" if anyone is bothered/interested in trying out the new falmer cave glowy textures.

Aiyen...let me be the first to apologize for putting you on this path since I was the one who brought up the issue! :)

I'm glad your persistence has led to a solution though. Hehe, nice work!

 

Your texture is 10000x better than what Beth had come up with for the vision/atmosphere of that cave. Vanilla is just disruptive and it appears "wrong". I'm currently not using an ENB at all, so I'd be happy to test out this texture plus the ENB if you like. PM me if you want. I'm running a full SR install (2k textures), w/ RLO and CoT.

 

I still have to go back into Shimmermist Cave/Grotto in another level or two to take out the final guy and the automaton in there. Got wiped with my current char at his level.

 

Again, great work!

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Do not be sad! I would have thought it was a major problem myself if I had found it! :D

If you or anyone else finds something similar that just looks horrible with RLO + CoT let me know!

 

I already fixed the SFO "bright LOD tree" problem when using ENB´s... optimized the texture for my own preset.. but I guess it should work for a wide array of other presets as well.

 

Also working on some sunglare goodness... since my preset is fairly picky with sun types apparently... If they are not of sufficient quality then they will just look like concentric colored circles.

 

But back to tweaking!

Still have some lacking understanding about how the glowmaps work for this texture... gonna try out a few things to see if I can make any good changes!

 

Also if someone can find another cave then shimmermist where the texture is used please let me know!

 

 

Update: Okay updated and tested the poo out of this... Remade the specular map from the ground up, and added even more compression so the textures are now only about 700kb each... that should allow every computer to use it! I got higher resolutions, but I see no change going up to 4k compressed or 2k uncompressed.

Other then a slightly better color transition when standing with your face really close up into some glowing rocks.

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Do not be sad! I would have thought it was a major problem myself if I had found it! :D

If you or anyone else finds something similar that just looks horrible with RLO + CoT let me know!

 

I already fixed the SFO "bright LOD tree" problem when using ENB´s... optimized the texture for my own preset.. but I guess it should work for a wide array of other presets as well.

 

Also working on some sunglare goodness... since my preset is fairly picky with sun types apparently... If they are not of sufficient quality then they will just look like concentric colored circles.

 

But back to tweaking!

Still have some lacking understanding about how the glowmaps work for this texture... gonna try out a few things to see if I can make any good changes!

 

Also if someone can find another cave then shimmermist where the texture is used please let me know!

 

 

Update: Okay updated and tested the poo out of this... Remade the specular map from the ground up, and added even more compression so the textures are now only about 700kb each... that should allow every computer to use it! I got higher resolutions, but I see no change going up to 4k compressed or 2k uncompressed.

Other then a slightly better color transition when standing with your face really close up into some glowing rocks.

Great work on the textures Aiyen! After I read the earlier posts about this, I started trying to figure out how to improve those as well, but then realized you were doing the same thing! :)

 

Here's some things I figured out, which may (or may not) help. You may have already discovered some of these things too.

 

 

 

  • The mesh used for the shader is found in \meshes\test\ and is called falmerdirectionalglow.nif

    • You probably figured this out since that NIF uses the falmerglow01.dds and falmerglow01_g.dds from \textures\clutter  -- which you are already editing ;)
  • The shaders in the CK which use that NIF are called FalmerDirectionalShader01 and FalmerLightDirectionalShader01

    • The "Light" version just uses less of the shader compared to the other
  • To find every place in the game where those shaders/textures are used isn't an easy task, but here's what you could do:

    • Load up Skyrim.esm (and DLC masters if desired) in the CK
    • After it loads select "All" in the Object Window
    • Type "falm*dir*" in the Object Window Filter (without quotes)
    • Right-click one of the shader Material Objects and select "Use Info"

      • That will show you every Static object using the shader
      • A lot of them, not all, start with Cave and have Falmer in the name
    • In the Object Window Filter you could type "Cave*Falm*" to find most of the objects in question
    • Then pick an object, such as "CaveGShaftTop01Falmer" which I know is in Shimmerist, right-click and select "Use Info" again

      • That example will show you ShimmeristCave01, but also places such as:

      • Gloomreach02
      • DCL1zFalmerValley03
      • Irkngthand03
      • ChillwindDepths01
      • TolvaldsCave03
  • You'd essentially have to do that with the various Static objects using the shader material to find where it's used

 

 

Of course you could also try tweaking the shader Material Objects in the CK as well. In my own playing around, I found that setting Z to 0.0000 instead of the default 1.000 value turned off the shader entirely. But for anyone who likes the effect in game and would rather see the textures improved, that wouldn't be a good solution. You can also decrease the effect in the shaders by tweaking the Falloff Scale. Higher values (up to 1.0000) make the effect appear less, while lower values increase the effect.

 

I also played around with the two texture files by painting them a solid color, such as all white, all black, all dark blue, and combinations thereof. You can get some interesting glow effects by doing this (i.e. white). I primarily tried that because of the varied blues in the original texture that just looked ugly in game.

 

Those are just some things I found, but I look forward to seeing your final result as a mod! :) 

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I haven't found an ENB that i'm satisfied with yet for the new RLO + COT + Skyre combo.  I tried Rezerect's .153 version, its mostly good but there are graphical artifacts.  The old Skyrealism cinematic .119 doesn't really go well with COT + RLO i've found.  It's too bright in some places and not bright enough in others.  No ENB is better, which is a bummer.

 

Will try the other one listed in this thread.

The RealVision ENB that Kal mentioned earlier is the best one I've used personally and I've tried many. It was just updated to 1.4d, to include SMAA and SweetFX and was designed to work with RLO 4.0.7 and CoT 3.1, so I'm looking forward to trying out the new version.

 

To use the ENB detailed shadows, AO, EdgeAA, DoF, and other effects turned on in RealVision, I had to turn off AO and any AA settings in NVidia CP and Skyrim Preferences, including Transparency AA. I did leave AF set to 16x in NVidia CP though and turned off the ENB AF, because with the ENB things looked too blurry in game for me (NVidia looks better). I also have Texture Filter Quality set to High in NVidia CP and I'm not using FXAA.

 

I get around 30 FPS in heavily forested areas, sometimes dipping to 26 or 27, but I can live with it, to have Neo's SR setup + this  great looking ENB. I know it's all personal preference when it comes to ENB, but try this one out if you haven't yet. You can of course turn off things you don't like in game, such as the AO, which seems to affect FPS negatively most of all. I didn't gain much FPS by turning off DoF, shadow details, EdgeAA, etc.

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I get around 30 FPS in heavily forested areas, sometimes dipping to 26 or 27, but I can live with it, to have Neo's SR setup + this  great looking ENB. I know it's all personal preference when it comes to ENB, but try this one out if you haven't yet. You can of course turn off things you don't like in game, such as the AO, which seems to affect FPS negatively most of all. I didn't gain much FPS by turning off DoF, shadow details, EdgeAA, etc.

SkyLighting is the biggest fps-killer next to SSAO, both cost about 15% extra FPS. Also SkyLighting to me personally does the least difference but might be that I just haven't played with it on enough, due to the performance cost, to tell the difference

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The RealVision ENB that Kal mentioned earlier is the best one I've used personally and I've tried many. It was just updated to 1.4d, to include SMAA and SweetFX and was designed to work with RLO 4.0.7 and CoT 3.1, so I'm looking forward to trying out the new version.

 

To use the ENB detailed shadows, AO, EdgeAA, DoF, and other effects turned on in RealVision, I had to turn off AO and any AA settings in NVidia CP and Skyrim Preferences, including Transparency AA. I did leave AF set to 16x in NVidia CP though and turned off the ENB AF, because with the ENB things looked too blurry in game for me (NVidia looks better). I also have Texture Filter Quality set to High in NVidia CP and I'm not using FXAA.

 

That's a good find, PCG4m3r. Just out of curiosity, what do you use in your system? I ask because I only use a Radeon HD 6870 with 1 GB VRAM for graphics, and I was wondering if that would saddle me down too much.

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Skylighting is a really good immersive feature... gives shadows that actually follow the sun. Which is also why it takes up so much performance.

Also affects the AO.

SSAO have variable performance impact depending on the size of the AO texture relative to your resolution. The quality settings have only a minor impact in comparison.

Also Reflection takes about as much as the AO does since it is in effect another texture that needs to be loaded.

The new rain feature takes up about 2-5 FPS depending on settings, card(s) bla bla bla. I still prefer just using a 2d transparent texture for rain.

Also you can get a DoF that takes up a lot of performance, or set up SMAA so it eats more into your FPS but you get better quality.

 

Low SSAO quality is however really noticeable under some circumstances (Foggy weather), which is why it is preferred to make sure it looks really good, and also why it tends to eat up the most.

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The RealVision ENB that Kal mentioned earlier is the best one I've used personally and I've tried many. It was just updated to 1.4d, to include SMAA and SweetFX and was designed to work with RLO 4.0.7 and CoT 3.1, so I'm looking forward to trying out the new version.

 

To use the ENB detailed shadows, AO, EdgeAA, DoF, and other effects turned on in RealVision, I had to turn off AO and any AA settings in NVidia CP and Skyrim Preferences, including Transparency AA. I did leave AF set to 16x in NVidia CP though and turned off the ENB AF, because with the ENB things looked too blurry in game for me (NVidia looks better). I also have Texture Filter Quality set to High in NVidia CP and I'm not using FXAA.

That's a good find, PCG4m3r. Just out of curiosity, what do you use in your system? I ask because I only use a Radeon HD 6870 with 1 GB VRAM for graphics, and I was wondering if that would saddle me down too much.
Credit goes to Kal for finding that one. I was just agreeing with his/her choice after trying it out myself. :)

 

I guess I should have posted GPU, since it does make a difference, especially with ENB (which I believe relies more on the GPU). I'm running a single GTX 680 with 4GB. I do use mostly 2048K textures for almost everything and half-sized the normals only on Skyrim HD, SRO, Serious HD, SFO, TreesHD, and the Vanilla/HRDLC packs.

 

I'm also running 2560x1600 resolution (30 in. monitor) so it's always challenging to find a good balance of performance with all that and an ENB thrown on top, but turning off NVidia and Skyrim Prefs AA helped. Also, I did seem to gain some performance by reducing shadows in the ini files from 4096 to 2048 and it still looks pretty good to me, probably because of the ENB shadows.

 

I think I'm finally satisfied that I found an ENB that I like and feel like I'm closer now to actually playing the game...if I can just keep myself from looking at all the new mods and the latest updates! :D

 

With my previous card, GTX 580 1.5GB VRAM, I was limited on some of the features I could use with ENBs, but that was with older versions prior to ENB v0139 I believe. I read somewhere that the later versions, I think starting with v0139 or something close to that, had some improvements that allowed it to run better on systems that previously couldn't use an ENB..I could be wrong about that though.

 

1GB VRAM may not be enough to use all the features, depending on your screen resolution and resolution of texture packs. You could always give a try though and start by turning off AO in game. When I do that with RealVision I immediately see my FPS jump from 30 to 45-48.

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True Vision ENB looks really nice, need to play around with it more but seen some breathtaking outdoor scenes... starting tommorow night I will also likely be playing on a 30" screen. :)

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I am running RLO + RLO Dungeons + CoT weathers + CoT dark nights set up at the moment. After upgrading to 1.9 and all the latest versions of mentioned mods (4.0.7c RLO and 3.1 CoT) SkyRealism Cinematic somehow lost its appearance to me. I tested about 8 different ENBs last night and could not find satisfying results

 

The one that appeared to me most was True Vision ENB. I used Cinematic Preset (without the letterbox). I used CoT nights level 6 for this. The enbseries.ini will need some tweaking though, i.e. less saturated fires and less glow (currently fires reflection on stone make it look like metal), possibly some more tweaks. The daytime looks fantastic though.

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