|Improved Argonian Facial Textures 1.1|
|Improved Facial Textures|
BETTER CHARACTER TEXTURES
This section focuses on mods that alter the player character, NPCs, horses, creatures, etc. Most of the mods listed here are not "pure replacers" because they involve some other required elements.
- Facial Textures or New Face Textures (both by Enayla)
These fantastic mods replace all of the human, elven and orc head textures with new textures painted by Enayla. The NFT version removes the "makeup" effects that caused some problems with Nords in the older version. They should be used along either Natural Faces or Improved Facial Textures (IFT) because they only add the base textures and not the age textures. Install either IFT or Natural faces first, then add one of these texture packs.
- Vibrant Bodytextures_Femmes
This mod replaces all the textures for the default female bodies with new textures designed to work with Enayla's Facial Textures. The new textures are higher resolution and have more vibrant coloring. A male equivalent replacer is also planned.
- IFT (Improved Facial Textures)
IAFT 1.1 (Improved Argonian Facial Textures) + IABT (Improved Argonian Body Textures)
- Gorier Blood
- Slof's Dremora Textures
- Morrowind-Style Dremora
This excellent mod replaces Dremora textures to make them look more like they did in Morrowind. Based on Slof's Dremora Textures, the mod includes textures for Robert's body, the vanilla body and the dremora face. Be sure to install this after Djangos Unique Features if you use both.
- Slof's Horses
- Djangos Unique Features (facial tattoos, scars, etc.)
- Tattoo Armor (body tattoos)
- Retextured Orcs Pack (brown Orcs)
- Better Male Body Textures
This excellent mod by RulZ improves the textures on the vanilla Oblivion humanoid male body. Does not work with male body mesh replacers (see below).
There's a huge number of character improvements that are not covered here, mainly because they stray too far from the original mission of TOTO. Still, some of these are just too good to not get some mention. The main areas of improvement not already covered are body mesh replacers, beauty packs, and animations.
Warning: some of these links may lead to pictures containing nudity.
For a detailed pictorial comparison of player/NPC female body mesh replacers, see the UESP Tes4Mod:Body_Mods page. Note that many of these body mods have their own specialized body textures, as well as a growing collection of clothing and armor replacers to better match the new body shapes.
The only major thing lacking from the UESP page so far is that it doesn't include any details on male body mesh replacers, mostly because the only ones produced so far are all by a single modder. See Robert's Male Full Body Mesh Replacer v4 (or v3) and the optional variants add-on (bulky, muscular, belly -- only for v3 so far).
There aren't many options for better head meshes -- in fact, there's only one that I know of: throttlekitty's Hot Heads. Fortunately, these are awesome. They make it much easier to create faces that are sharp, angular, or gaunt, as opposed to the standard roundish faces in the game. The only drawback is that it requires some work to set them up, but it's well worth it if you like the look.
This is a huge category probably worthy of an entire guide on its own. It includes numerous mods that improve or alter hair, eyes, and facesraces, etc.). There are lots of different mods in this area, but the most comprehensive solution for player characters so far is Beautiful People, which is a compilation of many other great beauty packs. Some notable expansions for this mod include Beautiful People + Soya Hair, as well as the Han Beautiful People and Budoka Beautiful People mods (which both add Asian-style races notably absent from TES4).
For NPCs, there's really only one choice -- because it's so amazingly good and so massively comprehensive: Tamriel NPCs Revamped (TNR). This mod tweaks and revamps the appearances of more than 1,000 NPCs to vastly increase the diversity and attractiveness of NPC faces in the game. TNR doesn't include any textures itself. It's an ESP-only mod with tweaked facegen settings for each NPC, so it doesn't matter when you install it, and it's compatible with all face texture replacers.
What is important when using TNR is that you must either load it very early in your load order -- probably before UOP even -- to avoid any problems with other mods that make more important changes to NPCs, or even better use Wrye Bash and its NPC Faces Patcher to easily merge the TNR face changes with any other mods that alter NPC stats -- this way you get all the important NPC changes from any other mods merged with the face changes from TNR. If you use Wrye Bash, then you don't even need to have the TNR plugins active -- the Bashed Patch will merge them in regardless.
For a complete overview of all the changes made by TNR, including numerous screenshots and a detailed walkthrough of the Wrye Bash process, see the TNR web site.
Another great mod along these same lines is Better Redguards, which gives Redguards much darker skin tones and resolves the "green tint" problem with Redguard faces. Be sure to load it after TNR (and use Wrye Bash if you have any other mods that alter Redguard NPCs). This mod includes Redguard textures based loosely on Natural Faces 0.95, but since the Redguard previously didn't have their own textures it will not overwrite any other face texture packs like IFT, NF, or Enayla's FT. It also includes extra body textures for compatibility with Robert's Male Body replacer, the BAB Female Body replacer, and Exnem's Female Eye Candy body replacer. Beautiful People offers a compatibility patch for Better Redguards in the BP Compatibility Patches download. If you use Django's Unique Features, then you'll need to copy and rename Django's files for Imperials to maintain those facial features on Redguards (looking for a patch that fixes this).
Finally, if you're a cat lover, you may want to check out Whiskers and Eyebrows for some serious meow! Or, if you want to spruce up the beast races in general, take a look at Slof's Oblivion Better Beasts.
I'm just barely starting this section, so not much here yet.
There are several distinct types of animation improvement mods, including passive animation mods (which improve the variety of animations that the player and NPCs may use during normal play) and "posed" animation mods (which typically let you force your character or NPCs to strike a specific pose for screenshots). Fortunately, there's already a great guide to Oblivion Pose Mods, most of which are inspired by Xiamara's groundbreaking Strike a Pose mod, as well as the popular Actors In Charge (which includes the animations from Strike a Pose).
MORE GOOD STUFF
These smaller texture replacement mods may not make a dramatic difference in your game, but they are worth considering.
Natural Faces 0.95 (not compatible with IFT)
The Complete Dremora 0.2 (Dremora skin retex)
Quality Female Textures (nudity warning!)