Skyrim's default gameplay balance was rather lopsided, so since near the beginning of Skyrim modding I've been using (and rather obsessed with) balancing mods and mods that I think expand gameplay (mainly combat) without getting too lore-unfriendly. And instead of talking about a "Pack", I'd like to talk about this wonderful mod-obsessed community's thoughts on the various top balancing mods.
My main thought is this: compatibility patches are hard to make and balance is hard to achieve, so the more mods you add, the more likely you will unbalance your game. Mods, by default, are usually balanced for vanilla, hence why compatibility patches are necessary.
ACE Combat Skills (what I currently use)
Pros: Highly modular. Somewhat configurable. Closest to Vanilla.
Cons: No MCM. Lack of compatibility patches for modern mods.
S.P.E.R.G. - Skyrim Perk Enhancements and Rebalanced Gameplay
Pros: Somewhat modular. Highly configurable. Has some compatibility patches for modern mods.
Cons: May change a bit too much. Not compatible with some mods like Harvest Overhaul.
Skyrim Redone aka "SkyRe"
Pros: Lots of compatibility patches available, in addition to ReProccer.
Cons: Furthest away from Vanilla. Adds tons of scripts and changes. Basically changes the gameplay to the "SkyRe Experience".
Note: I consider Requiem's overhaul to go far further than any balancing & enhancement mod, so out of consideration for this discussion.
The reason why I like "ACE Combat Skills" currently is because I think the most compatible perk overhaul mod --- SkyRe --- just changes way too much, even if I'm just trying to use one module; and furthermore, it's obviously balanced to use multiple modules. There are other really great mods which offer other changes that SkyRe would conflict with. I've thought of making my own compatibility patches for both ACE and/or S.P.E.R.G., as well as an MCM menu for ACE. I was thinking a SkyProc for SPERG would probably be best.
Finally, below are a list of all/some the current overhaul mods in my current load order; since I'm lazy, I didn't actually finish all the blurbs for the list, and probably forgot a couple:
Enemy AI / Overhaul
Notes: MCM Menu.
My Thoughts: This has been my favourite AI overhaul mod, and nothing so far has replaced it for me.
* Smithing Perks Redone
* ACE Combat Skills
* Simple Spell Scaling Solution by tejon
Notes: This simply swaps the potion and armor enchant effects, so armor enchants increase spell power and potions decrease Magicka costs, and allows skill to further decrease Magicka costs.
My Thoughts: The simplest fix to Vanilla since the beginning.
* Apocalypse - Magic of Skyrim by Enai Station
Notes: Adds new, unique spells. Includes Requiem, SkyRe, and SPERG compatibility patches, and is fully compatible with ASIS. MCM Menu.
My Thoughts: Adds pretty well-balanced new spells, and can be distributed to NPCs through ASIS without breaking things (except if you have really large-scale battles).
* Forgotten Magic Redone by 3JIou and sward66
Notes: Adds new, unique spells. SkyRe Patch. MCM Menu. NOT for NPCs (ASIS, etc.)
My Thoughts: I really liked the original Forgotten Magic by the same original author; haven't yet tried this "Redone" version, but it will be in my newest playthrough.
Notes: Adds new, unique spells and stances with a unique gameplay element. MCM Menu. NOT for NPCs. (ASIS, etc.)
My Thoughts: Another neat mod that's been in my collection for a long time (since I love spellcasting.)
* Bound Armory by Gruftlord
Notes: Adds new weapons, including crossbows, to the list of Bound Weapons that can be summoned, adds scaling to all Bound weapons, and tweaks the Bound Weapon-related Conjuration perks. SkyRE and SPERG compatibility. MCM Menu.
My Thoughts: I absolutely love playing a Conjuration Battlemage, yet again that playstyle doesn't really work well in Vanilla (at higher levels), so a mod like this is required. I also use Elemental Binding - Bound Weapons Edition along with this mod.
Looting / Dungeon Delving
* Dynamic Loot by 3JIou
Notes: Adds more randomness to loot, mostly as multiple weak enchants. Highly configurable, with an MCM Menu. Addons for many different popular item mods.
My Thoughts: I really disliked the static nature of rewards in TES games, especially as they are suppose to be used with what I see as broken Enchanting and Smithing systems, but I like min/maxing. Dynamic Loot pairs very well with Enchanting & Smithing overhauls that makes them progress much slower, also making them less required to advance your character.
Sneaking / Thievery / Stealth
* Stealth Skills Rebalanced - Sneak - Lockpicking - Pickpocket
* Sneak Tools
* Spell Sneak Attacks 2
Potions, Poisons, and Food
* Phitts Alchemy and Food Overhaul
Races and Character Creation
* Resplendent - Races of Skyrim
* Aurora - Standing Stones of Skyrim
Edited by generalmx, 01 August 2014 - 11:05 PM.