This is for experienced mod authors and users that know how to use xEdit, xLODGen or DynDOLOD already.
Installation and Setup
Download xLODGen beta 21
Unzip into a dedicated folder outside of any game folders or special Windows folders like Program Files.
(Pro users can merge with existing xEdit installation. Make sure to overwrite older LODGen.exe / LODGenx64.exe in Edit Scripts. All other files with the same filenames are the same as the latest version of xEdit.)
Rename xLODGen.exe to [game mode]LODGen.exe (TES5LODGen.exe for example) or start with command line parameter -fnv, -fo3, -fo4, -fo4vr, -tes5, tes5vr, -sse
Use -o:"c:\OutputPath\" commandline parameter to change where files are generated to, default is the game folder.
RTFM and Share Results
See the included Terrain-LOD-Readme.txt for a brief explanation of the settings. Read the hints that are shown when the mouse pointer rests on a setting.
Ask specific questions in this thread for a more in-depth explanation if required and share feedback (with screenshots) about results or problems.
These tools generate LOD meshes and textures "exactly" like CK, but not like the meshes and textures are shipping with the games (they are often manually edited).
However, these tools provide more options and higher resolutions (use the x64 version if there are memory errors because you believe you require 4k or higher) and can be updated to add more useful features and options.
I did some testing in the different games, but finding the best combinations of options and settings requires lots of testing and are a matter of personal opinion and which game is used, the load order, mods, even different worldspaces probably.
That means, I am only able to give generic guidelines and hints to sent you off to find and test for yourself and share your results. My main interested is that generations works correctly and without problems for now.
The object and tree LOD generation is the same as the current versions of xEdit / xLODGen. Refer to their respective descriptions and explanations. Obviously, users of Skryim/Skyrim SE/Skyrim VR continue to use DynDOLOD for drastically improved object and tree LOD generation.
Here are suggestion to start without going crazy and that should be quick enough to generate:
Set quality of meshes for LOD4 to 5 and then +5 for each next level. Or just set levels 8/16/32 to 10.
Check protect cell borders (yes it fixes the ugly terrain drops at outer cell borders that still exist in Fallout 4).
Use the max vertices setting only if you want to hard limit max file size.
Set Optimize Unseen to off for first generation, so you have something to compare to later.
Start experimenting with on or a value of 300 for LOD32 and compare coastlines and file size to other settings. Check Specific Chunk and drop down to 32 and set SW to test with a specific file with lots of water, river etc.
Set texture sizes to 512 for a start. Larger sizes and large world spaces will take a considerable time (like 15 to 30 minutes or more easily). Each higher resolution means quadruple the work.
Use DXT1 for diffuse and 565 for normal. Check mipmaps and raise steepness, uncheck Bake normal maps.
For now, leave the Brightness, Contrast and Gamma at 0 and 1.0 respectively. It seems that only Skyrim CK and Skyrim SE CK are manipulating the intensity of the textures to adjust for the noise.dds and the god awful "improved" snow shader of Skyrim SE (just turn that thing off, really). If textures seem too dark in the game, brighten the noise.dds instead or vice versa. That way you can get perfectly matching LOD textures that look just like the textures in the loaded cells. For Skyrim a good average color of the noise texture seems to be around #C0. See below for a couple noise texture downloads.
If you want to test larger texture sizes, use the chunk option to limit the number of textures that need to be generated. For example, check [x] Specific chunk, leave the drop down empty and set WS to the lower left cell coordinate of an 32x32 area, like 0, 0. It will then generate all textures up to 31,31. Not all worldspaces have their origin at 0,0 so you will have to check already generated meshes/texture filenames for their lower left coordinates.
Put in game data folder obviously. Adds back terrain for Skyrim (Tamriel worldspace) at the outer edges so there is no missing terrain meshes/textures when generating terrain LOD for Skyrim.
Only required to be loaded when generating terrain LOD. No harm done when loaded in-game but typically the player can not get close to these areas, so it is rather useless.
Single color flat noise, Adjusted vanilla noise
Examples for Skyrim. Install to game folder like any other texture mod. The noise texture is applied in-game on top of terrain LOD textures, so no effect for LOD generation.
Edited by sheson, Yesterday, 12:55 PM.