Getting Started

Welcome to Ultimate Skyrim, and thank you for your interest in the project!

Please note that Ultimate Skyrim requires Skyrim Classic Edition with all DLC’s, otherwise known as Skyrim Legendary Edition. You can purchase this edition here. Skyrim Special Edition is not currently supported.

Make sure to read all instructions very carefully. If you’re unsure about any part of the guide, feel free to ask the Community for support. They’re a friendly bunch, and are usually happy to help.

Once you’ve completed the Getting Started page, you’ll be asked to choose between the Manual Install, the Express Install (Free), and the Express Install (Paid).

Approximate time required from this point (Express Install): 2-4 hours, depending on modding experience & internet speed
Approximate time required from this point (Manual Install): 7-12+ hours, depending on modding experience & internet speed


BEFORE WE BEGIN

There are a few things you’ll need before we begin the installation proper. Please ensure that you have:

Once that’s squared away, we can begin!


Step ONE: run the game ONCE

The first task is to run Skyrim through Steam, which will prepare your install for Ultimate Skyrim.

  1. Launch “The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim” from your Steam library.

  2. When the Skyrim Launcher appears, wait for it to auto-detect your settings, then click “Play” in the Launcher. (These settings do not matter, and will be replaced.)

  3. Once the main menu has loaded, select “Quit” to return to desktop.

Running the game once generates files that Ultimate Skyrim needs to function. Now it's time to install SKSE.


Step TWO: Install SKSE

The Skyrim Script Extender (SKSE) is a utility that allows many mods to function. We’re going to install this now.

  1. Download the SKSE installer from this link. (The version you want looks like this.)

  2. Run the SKSE installer. If it cannot detect your Skyrim installation, browse for your Skyrim folder and click “Next”. (It will look something like this, though your exact filepath may be a little different.)

  3. Click “Install”.

SKSE expands Skyrim's internal code engine, allowing modders to create complex features. Now it's time for the SKSE Plugin Preloader.


STEP THREE: INSTALL SKSE PLUGIN PRELOADER

The SKSE Plugin Preloader is another utility that some mods require to function. We’re going to install it too.

  1. Download the Plugin Preloader from this link. (The version you want looks like this.)

  2. Open the download and drag the two files into your Skyrim folder, where TESV.exe is located. (This is the same folder from the SKSE installer.)

Some mods must be initialized before the game starts, and the Plugin Preloader makes that possible. Up next: the incredible TES5Edit!


STEP FOUR: INSTALL TES5Edit

TES5Edit (xEdit) is a world-class modding utility that will help us improve stability. We’re installing it now, but we won’t use it until later.

  1. Download the latest version of TES5Edit from this link. (Click “Manual Download”, as shown here.)

  2. Save the files to a location of your choosing - preferably on the same drive as your Skyrim install.

TES5Edit (aka xEdit) is an incredible tool for modders and users, and UltSky wouldn't exist without it. Click here to donate to the xEdit Patreon!


STEP FIVE: INSTALL ENB Binaries

ENB is a utility that increases stability and allows improved graphics. We’re only improving stability for now - you can decide later if you want graphical improvements too.

  1. Download the latest ENB from this link. (Click the latest/highest version number (.389 in this example), scroll to the bottom of the next page, then click the “Download” button.)

  2. Open the download and drag the files d3d9.dll, enbhost.exe, and enblocal.ini into your Skyrim folder, where TESV.exe is located. (This is the same folder from the SKSE installer.)

  3. Open enblocal.ini with Notepad and adjust it according to this guide.

  4. Save and close enblocal.ini.


Congratulations! You’re ready to start downloading mods. Click the button below to continue.