Survival and Realism¶
On the flip side, you have to appropriately react to Skyrim’s environment. The core of this, of course, is Campfire and Frostfall. Along with some more resource-adding mods (notably, Tentapalooza), these mods add a complete cold-weather survival system to Skyrim. Your character will be subject to Skyrim’s harsh climate, and you will need to bundle up, set up camp frequently, and avoid frigid water and inclement weather in order to survive. Mages will have various options to escape the cold (all compatible with Librum’s Spell Research mechanics!): summoning cloaks or various tents and shelters, transmuting or summoning materials, summoning a Fire Atronach for heat, or teleporting to safety, among others. Finally, your character’s survival skills will improve over time, unlocking various survival-themed perks available at a campfire.
You will also need to keep track of your hunger, thirst, and fatigue, thanks to SunHelm Survival and needs. You will need to maintain a supply of water (or alcohol!) and fresh or salted food in order to survive. Thankfully, these resources can be obtained from many sources. You can get water from snowbanks, wells, rivers, or the ocean – although it may have to be boiled for hygiene’s sake – and many NPCs are happy to share or sell water, if you ask nicely. Innkeepers will sell you bottles of water in their normal merchant menu, and refill your empty bottles and waterskin for a price. You can also add a hotkey in SunHelm’s MCM to drink and fill your empty bottles at water sources.
Getting food is a more involved process, thanks to Hunterborn. When you hunt an animal, you now need to properly dress and skin the carcass, using a hunting knife. On the other hand, you will have access to many more resources when you harvest from an animal carcass: more kinds of meats and animal products, pelts from each animal, and animal bones. Your hunting, foraging, bone-carving, and cooking skills will improve with each use, improving your harvests and giving access to new recipes over time.
Sleep is also more complicated than it may seem. Although it is necessary to survive, it is fairly dangerous to fall asleep in Skyrim’s wilderness or in its dungeons. Thanks to Sands of Time Sleeping Encounters, any time you fall asleep, you will have a location-dependent chance of being attacked during the night. This is particularly true in dungeons, making it imperative to either (a) quickly get to safety or (b) bring along a follower or lay traps. Finally, through Sunhelm, diseases have become much more dangerous. Instead of applying a minor debuff to your stats, each disease will now progress through various stages, with many becoming deadly if left untreated. To avoid this all-new danger, you will need to take care to apply Resist Disease effects, properly prepare your foods and water, and try not to get bitten or scratched in fights with wild animals. If you do contract a disease, and it doesn’t go away on its own, you will have to rest up, find an alchemical cure (unique to each disease), or pay through the nose for a priest to dispel your illness.