QuakeCon 2014 – Bring on the case mods!


On top of being a gaming paradise, the BYOC can feel like you’re visiting the gaming equivalent of a an auto show — PCs with ridiculous horsepower and monster truck-esque casings. Truly a site to behold.

During last year’s QuakeCon, the Bethesda Underground team talked with contestants competing in Modders-Inc Computer Case Mod Contest. See some of last year’s highlights in the video above.

 

Interested in competing this year? Modders-Inc is back at it again — with three categories for attendees to compete in:

Case Mod Classic: class consists of any mod that is built from an existing retail or factory PC Case.

Scratch-Build Mod: consists of any mod built from anything other than a PC Case.

id/Bethesda Themed Mod: consists of any mod themed on id Software/Bethesda or any their games.

For more details on the contest, head to www.modders-inc.com.

Fallout: New Vegas Mod Interview – Otellino & CNC

We have the pleasure of meeting up with Otellino (Thomas David Mitchell) and CNC (Christopher Newton-Clare) to discuss their Fallout: New Vegas mod, “For the Enclave!” Not only does the mod add The Enclave as a joinable faction, but it also consists of several main and side quests as well as random encounters. The attention to detail makes “For the Enclave” a worthy addition to the New Vegas Wasteland.

When not working on mods, Otellino is a student at Abertay University in Dundee (Scotland) to study Game Design and Production Management. CNC hails from Southwest England where he is in IT Support and Care Work. They took the time to give us a breakdown of the hardwork and rewarding experience that went in to making such an expansive mod.

What encouraged you to become involved in creating a mod for Fallout: New Vegas?

Otellino: I’ve enjoyed modding games for quite a while, but I found Fallout’s setting to be fantastic. I love its retro-yet-sci fi setting. It accommodates all sorts of different mod ideas and is just all-around fun and interesting.

CNC: I loved the game with its rich lore and detail to it. Fallout has become my favorite series thanks to New Vegas.

What about the lore involving the Enclave inspired you to include them in New Vegas?

Otellino: I honestly find the Enclave very interesting. The idea of a shadow government and remnant of America’s military is something that I loved and had to build on. Even though the Enclave Oil Rig was destroyed in Fallout 2, the existence of Raven Rock in Fallout 3 served as a basis that other Enclave outposts may exist, and so the mod hopefully blend in well with the game’s setting.

CNC: Many people find it interesting and cool to effectively play as the “bad guys”. They have been in Fallout 2 and 3 ,while in 3 you can help them out you still couldn’t be with them. Plus, after seeing the original Enclave power armor brought back a mod had to be made (after I stopped kissing and hugging the monitor of course).

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Morrowind Modding Interview — Stuporstar

Our newest TES Modding interview features Sarah, a.k.a. Stuporstar from the Official Bethesda Forums.

Hailing from Canada, Sarah is a trained jeweler, illustrator, graphic designer, editor, and writer who currently works as a freelance fiction editor and book cover designer. Some of her most popular Morrowind mods include Uvirith’s Legacy, Books of Vvardenfell, and recently The Tea Mod and Uvirith’s Legacy (released after the time of this interview) for Morrowind.

How did you get involved with modding?

My brother gave me a copy of Morrowind in 2006, and I later bought both expansions for it. At the time, I’d been making minor mods and maps for Civilization IV, but never got heavily into it. I played Morrowind for a week or two before delving into modding. I was disappointed with the first stronghold I got in the game, Rethan Manor, so it didn’t take long for me to jump into the Construction Set to try to improve it. My first mod was a mess, and so was the next–unpublishable–but while learning I discovered the modding community. I remember distinctly how Fliggerty made me the most welcome and helped answer my most complicated scripting questions. I’ve tried to pay it forward ever since.

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Around the Web – Hallow’s Eve edition

With two days until Halloween, we put together some haunting links to check out as you finalize your costume and ready your candy bag.

Starting at Gamespot, there’s a special edition of Skyrim Mods featuring these spooktacular mods:

The scares don’t end with Skyrim. Recently, The Evil Within was featured in Yahoo’s 10 terrifying new horror games list, as well as Technology Tell’s own top 5 horror list.

Related, here’s a final reminder for Wikia’s ‘Thinking Outside of the Boxman’ Halloween Sweepstakes. By sharing your Evil Within-themed fan art or costume, you’ll have a chance to win an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 760 graphics card and a Shinji Mikami-signed poster. To participate, share your submission in the comments section here through 10/31 (read full sweepstakes rules).

Already entered, check out Chinduism’s spot-on Boxman costume below.

 Much better than my effort.

Morrowind Mod Interview – Adras

Reddit can be a dangerous or inspiring place. Sometimes you turn up real treasures if you have the right timing. This was the case of us seeing Reddit user, Adras’s Morrowind mod. The project took has taken him seven years and he’s still working on it. Turns out Adras is James Hartley of Traverse City, Michigan and in his day-to-day he works as a Network Technician. We spoke with Adras about the work he did on his mod, Ravenhold Castle, and the work he’s still doing to complete it.

What’s it been like working on Ravenhold Castle?

More than anything, it has been a great learning experience. When I first started out making mods, I didn’t know the first thing about how video games were made or the amount of work that goes into them. It has really given me a great perspective and respect of the people who do it for a living. Modding is a fun and rewarding experience, but it is also a lot of work.

The years of working on Ravenhold Castle has really helped expand my creative thinking skills. While working on the mod, I combined items and room pieces from the existing game to make new interior designs and other structures never before seen in Morrowind. Rather than making new objects that needed to be imported, I opted to be creative with the design and keep the mod entirely dependency-free; meaning that when installing the mod, there will only be one file, rather than many. That helps keep the mod simplistic, yet detailed.

Over the years you’ve put a lot of effort into preserving mod projects for Morrowind, can you talk about that?

Morrowind was the first open-world RPG game I played extensively. Most of my gaming experience before Morrowind was First Person Shooters and console games. The world of Vvardenfell is just so incredibly immersive that, even after 10 years, I can still walk around and see beauty in things that I didn’t notice before. That’s not to say that Oblivion or Skyrim aren’t beautiful – they certainly are – but Morrowind has something special about it. I can walk around Vvardenfell looking at all these strange creatures walking past me and huge mushroom trees off in the distance, and I feel like I am right at home.

Ravenhold Castle wasn’t the first mod I’ve created, but it is the first one that I really put a lot of time and effort into. I have been working on it for over 7 years, and it has become more part of my life than just a simple side project. I’ve put countless hours into it, I’ve had input from friends and family on it, and it has developed and changed over the years as I have. I’ve spent a lot time playing Morrowind over the past 10+ years, so much that it will always have a special place inside me. Through this mod, I’ve had a chance to give something of my own back to the world of Tamriel.
Ravenhold Castle isn’t ready for release yet due to time constraints with work, though I am hoping to be able to get enough work done to release it soon. Originally I was planning on having a entire quest line, but at this point it would only be a housing/town mod.

The interview continues after the break

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Morrowind Mod Interview – Fliggerty

When Fliggerty is not ruling over his Great House, he is working as a Software Engineer for the UK2 Group in Hyrum, Utah. He took time out of his schedule to give us the inside details on what its like reigning over the Great House Fliggerty.

It’s been a long time since we last talked, what’s new for you?

It has been a long time, and a lot has changed.  The biggest and most important part for me is that I’ve spent a lot of time and effort modding my family, and as a result it has doubled in size.     We now have two gorgeous little girls (which, unfortunately, has seriously cut into my gaming/modding time.)  Aside from that there is my career; during our last talk I was making garbage bags for a semi-living, but now I get to write code professionally.  The great thing is that I got a job with the company that hosts Great House Fliggerty, and basically used my site and mods as my portfolio and resume.  So if anyone ever tells you that modding is a waste of time, just point them towards me and I’ll set them straight.  (Even my wife has finally conceded that point!)

More after the break…

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Skyrim Modding Interview — Mike Hancho

We would like to welcome to the Bethesda Blog Mike Hancho — commonly known by the forum community as Balok, creator of Helgen Reborn for Skyrim. When he’s not too busy rebuilding Helgen, Mike is an Operations Manager for a construction company in Clemmons, NC.

Recently we caught up with him to discuss Skyrim modding…

How did you get involved with modding?

It all started with a radio! I loved the “Built for the Future” mod for Fallout 3 and wanted a radio near all the lockers I used to store my gear. Getting started, I was completely overwhelmed and not a little bit lost, so I went through the basic tutorials and figured it out from there. Since Fallout 3 was my first Bethesda game it eventually led me to the official Bethesda forums where I learned about Oblivion. I bought it and spent the next year playing it.

I made a couple of unreleased mods that I used for my personal enjoyment and then Fallout: New Vegas came out. After playing it for a while, I decided to write and build my New Bison Steve Hotel and Afterschool Special mods. Then I joined the Boulder Dome team and built all the interiors for Inner Boulder including the Haunted Toy Store as well as Harcort Positronics and the Android Manufacturing levels. That led to Skyrim and here we are!

When I think of Helgen Reborn, the first thing that comes to mind is Oblivion’s popular mod, Kvatch Rebuilt. Do you view this mod as a spiritual successor?

In all honesty, no, not really. Although I’d be remiss if I didn’t acknowledge that the name alone drew some attention to my project because of the popularity of Kvatch Rebuilt. In the beginning Helgen Rebuilt was a sort of working title, but I discovered someone had already uploaded a mod by that name. However, by this time I was well into development and into my closed beta test, and several of my testers liked my suggestion of using Helgen Reborn as they felt it was truly Reborn when it was finished, so I stuck with that. If anything, I see Helgen Reborn as the successor of my New Bison Steve Hotel and Afterschool Special mods for Fallout: New Vegas. I learned enough techniques building those mods that I felt confident enough to try something a little more ambitious. And since I like taking things you guys leave destroyed and turning them into places that are once again useable, Helgen was the obvious choice for my next project.

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Skyrim Modding Interview – Soolie

It’s been a loooong time since we did our last modding interview on Bethesda Blog, but I thought it was something that would be fun to bring back.

This week we’ve Scott Chaunce (aka Soolie). A college student hailing from Tasmania, Scott’s gotten some attention for his popular Tropical Skyrim mod…

What compelled you to create this project? Do you live in a cold weather area and needed a vacation?

I guess I never really ‘decided’ to create this project, it sort of just happened.  Before I started work on it, I had always wanted to play through a tropical/desert climate in an Elder Scrolls game.  Because I enjoy creating new environments and landscapes, I decided I might have a go at creating a few small tropical islands and deserts just for fun. However, I started to get a little excited about it, and I wanted to see results before I had even started.  So, to satisfy the little part of me that just wanted to know what it would look like. I quickly made up a few desert textures and applied them to the tundra area. I then launched the game, turned the grass off and what I saw surprised me.

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Source Code and Title Update for BFG Edition

Good news for our DOOM modding community. Beginning today on GitHub, the GPL source code for DOOM 3 BFG Edition is available on the site’s id Software page.

Additionally, the next time you boot up the game on Steam, you’ll receive the new PC title update for the game. For more, read the release notes below.

NEW FEATURES

  • All projectiles cast shadows
  • Texture LOD bias added to menu options
  • Added option to force v-sync (instead of “smart v-sync”)
  • Adjusted default brightness value
  • Shadow casting projectiles added to menu options
  • Allow setting anti-aliasing up to 16x on Nvidia hardware. AMD/Intel cap is at 8x
  • Adjusted range of vertical sensitivity (allows you to lower sensitivity further than original implementation)
  • Added option to disable checkpoints
  • Allow left/right to enter resolution menu
  • Variable FOV settings options were added into the main menu
  • Added controller bind options
  • Added additional anti-cheat measures

BUG FIXES

  • Fixed blood splatter effects break after reloading save game
  • Fixed broken view nodal code that allowed players to see through the world by backing into a wall and looking up
  • Fixed weapon impact effects break after using the artifact (heart)
  • Fixed leaderboards to work across languages