Steam Workshop makes installing Skyrim mods very easy

I’m sure a lot of people are really excited to get their paws on the new Skyrim Creation Kit, which should make modding much more easily accessible to the Skyrim community.  But I’m much less of a modder and more of a…moddee.  A mod connoisseur, if you will.  So what I’m more concerned about is how am I going to get all these new mods?  It looks like Steam has us covered.

From what I found its pretty easy to install mods now.  In Steam Workshop you “subscribe” to a mod, which I assume means that you will not only install the mod, but also get any subsequent updates automatically.  To get to the workshop click on the “Browse the workshop” button from Skyrim in the Steam library.

You’ll be taken to a page that shows new and popular mods and what looks like a huge amount of sorting and search tools, although I didn’t quite explore these yet.  (Update: This was just a first-glance impression, at closer inspection all I see for sorting is “tags” on the right, but there’s no search feature, not sure why)  I really like the highlights that come up on the front page and I hope this means the better mods get more attention.

I decided to try out the page for one of the better mods I’ve encountered in the past: Arrowsmith.  Now rather than copying several directories into steam folders, all I need to do is click on the “subscribe” button.  I didn’t like that they called it “Subscribe”.  Really confusing language, I thought for awhile this meant I was subscribing to their news feed or something.

In any case, this tells the Skyrim launcher to now download and install the mod package. You’ll see some command-line stuff come up at the bottom of the Skyrim launcher after you subscribe to a mod.

Mod status area highlighted in red

And that’s it!  The mod is now installed and ready to play.  Amazing how much more simple that is than even the easiest-to-install mod from before.

As mods basically kept Oblivion alive for years, I think little fan-service things like this can keep Skyrim alive for very long.  Now I want to see less spider-man mods and more huge mod quests!


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About Ryan Saul

Hailing from Portland, OR I work by day and blog by night. I like to consider myself a video game connoisseur, playing as many new things as I can get my hands on. Its hard to hold me down to one game for very long before I move on to the next big thing. Luckily, that works pretty well in terms of video game blogging.

6 responses to “Steam Workshop makes installing Skyrim mods very easy”

  1. Wackywarrior07 says :

    Hi i have just read through your piece and followed it word for word i subscribed to the following: remove lydias trade diologe, faster vanilla horses and open cites skyrim,

    when i open up skyrim its says synchronizing mods and then finished aynchronzing mods. however when i load a saved game the mods either dont work or are not activated…i checked the data files and the mods i subscribed to are ticked i unticked any other mods i downloaded from the internet aswell. do you know how to solve this issue or anything about it?
    sorry about the essay i cant find any other help on the internet thanks

    • Ryan Saul says :

      Yea no problem, I don’t claim to be support for this or anything, but for some mods I remember you need to click on the checkbox under “Data”, do you see it under there? I can test it out tonight actually, I’m interested in seeing it. Didn’t write this as a guide originally, but it sort of turned into one I guess :D

  2. Sean says :

    Now that you explained it, it is an exceedingly simple system. I’m just so used to going to download sites and clicking the big DOWNLOAD button that I was completely and utterly confused.

    Yes I feel like an idiot, but this “guide” proved to be exactly what I needed to set me straight. Thank you very much.

    • Ryan Saul says :

      Well thank you! I actually think its about time to revisit this, it seems like they have updated whole system extensively, like I see there’s a search button now. Any huge differences between my guide from a few months ago and now?

  3. Joel Hansen says :

    It’s about time I pickup Skyrim. Saul, do you have any recommended PC mods for it? I hear there are some for the item system (which was allegedly ‘broken’ for PC players)… Some recommended texture, animation, and menu mods would be fun.

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