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Skyrim SE Modding Adventures - Making a JK's Skyrim and Simple Property Investment Compatibility Patch

So getting the hang of using the render window of the Creation Kit is... somewhat tedious and mildly annoying at times. The end result's usually worth it though. In an earlier blog entry I was messing with adding staff enchanters for court wizards. Wasn't a big hit by any means, but I had a bit of experience and boost in confidence from it, especially with making patches with other mods that touch on existing areas. 

This time around I made a patch for JK's Skyrim and Simple Property Investment.

For the most part things went pretty smoothly. Most of the time it was a simple sign activator having it's sign moved by JKS. (For context, activator markers are these invisible boxes around stuff, that you can press the activate button on to perform an action. In this case it's the activator that SPI uses to let you invest money into a shop.) Some activators were placed on the base game's sign locations, and needed to be moved over to where ever the sign was move. 

Moving these activators to the right spot was pretty simple to do, just a little more time consuming that I'd have liked. I'm not used to all of the hotkeys. Tapping the D key in the CK in the render window to deselect a selected object was annoying, twice as annoying were all the other invisible markers I had to fight through to get to the sign activator markers. Luckily I can double tap the 1 key to temporarily cycle visibility of any selected object, once to make something transparent and twice to make it invisible.

After getting all the activators on their signs it was pretty smooth sailing. Couple little annoyances I make an exception to fix. First was the blacksmith guy in Falkreath having two signs. The author of SPI intended for the mod to be a framework, and planned to expand on the concept with integration info and tutorials. Given he's been busy and I wanted to just get it done so I can play, this didn't really seem ideal to wait on. Instead I opted to just yeet one of the signs into the Shadow Realm. There's one sign right in front of his door, and one in front of the forge. Personally I chose to keep the one by the forge since that's where you'll usually find him when his forge is open in the daytime.

Other annoying thing was a sign in Winterhold, over the general store. Now normally I'm not one to mind little design flaws. I'm hardly a good decorator myself, and certainly not a good game system designer overall. However the reason this sign was over a pillar, which had an idle marker right under it. If NPCs used the marker while chilling out outside (bad Winterhold weather joke I know), they'd lean up against the pillar right under the sign. This could make it a little obnoxious to talk to them, with the sign's activator potentially blocking them off. Instead of above the pillar I moved it under the shop's balcony/porch. This way the only thing under it is some firewood, which didn't even have a marker from what I could tell, that was only decoration.

Last thing I needed to do was clean up with a Quick Auto Clean in xEdit, and flag it as an ESL. Then it was good to upload. You can find the patch uploaded on Nexus Mods here if you're interested in using it.

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