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About this blog

Greetings everyone! This page contains my various Bethesda blogs. At the time of this update, it contains my troubleshooting playthrough series, my Skyrim modding diary, my mod cleanup case study series, and my Shout Like a Virgin beta test blog. You can access all the entries from the sidebar on the right side of your screen.



I've recently exceeded the 1000 mod threshold, and it's time to start periodically doing brief playthroughs to ferret out hidden conflicts and other bugs. In this series, we'll do shorter, more focused adventures where we try to tell an interesting story and also talk about what problems we ran into them and how we addressed them.


  • Charley's Story: Charlotte Ellison survived a nuclear war by spending more than two hundred years in stasis. Now she has to survive in a very new world, facing very new threats. A Fallout 4 playthrough.
  • The Spider's Web: Kirstia's search for answers has taken her to the island of Solstheim. Now she must uncover the secret of The Teacher - also known as Mephala - and continue the journey to master her powerful magical heritage. But can she survive as her enemies, new and old, close in? 
  • The Curious Case of Forrien Hlaalu: A year after she returned to Northpoint, Kirstia is back in Skyrim and looking for answers. The strange events that occured during her search for Sybil Fjotra continue to trouble her, as does the ongoing influence of the strange gods of the Forsworn. After a chance encounter over drinks, a wizard from the College of Winterhold sets her on the trail of a scholar who may have the answers she needs...
  • The Search for the Sybil: Exiled from Skyrim to the remote land of Northpoint, Kirstia Bjissen has fallen on hard times. Just as she hits rock bottom, a voice speaks to her and charges her with a sacred quest that will take her back to her native land - and likely into danger. Can Kirstia find the new Sybil of Dibella before her past catches up with her?
  • Shout Like a Virgin: Miraculously saved from death, Monilee of High Rock finds herself in Skyrim, a land riven by civil war and harboring dark secrets. While she tries to build a new life in this foreign land, she's haunted by half-remembered dreams, and in chasing them she discovers her role in the turning of the ages. However, Monilee has not gone unnoticed by powers outside the mortal realm. Used as a pawn in the struggle between Nocturnal and Dibella, it will take all her wits, endurance, bravery, and stubbornness to reclaim sovereignty over her body and her soul.


Modding Diary

This series tracks my modding projects in-between playthroughs and case studies. The main focus will be on the technical processes of cleaning, editing, and integrating mods into a large load order configuration, including managing emergent multi-mod interactions. 


Modding Case Studies

This blog reviews the tools and techniques that authors and end users can apply to make their mods as stable and compatible as possible, as well as how end users can integrate complicated mods into a large load order setup. In addition to coverage of well known techniques such as automatic mod cleaning, this blog delves into more complicated issues such as navmesh repair. 


Entries in this blog

Homecoming (Kirstia's Adventure, Chapter 22)

The trip south was harrowing - I just don't have a better word for it. By then the Forsworn were clearly aware of our intrusion, and search parties were combing not just the roads but also through the nearby fields and along the clifftops. If the cliff face behind the redoubt had been more forgiving, we could have returned by way of Rorikstead, just like we'd came, but there was no way we would make it up those heights ascending. After several near misses with patrols, we cut further west, climb

The Rescue (Kirstia's Adventure, Chapter 21)

"You never did explain how you found me," I said, looking across the bed of the carriage to where Mother was sitting.   She smiled at that, responding, "I suppose I didn't, did I? It was your mercenary friend, Atar, who tipped us off. Both groups were in the employ of the Silver-Bloods, and when the pirates took you they passed right by Atar's company without a word."   "Why didn't they stop the corsairs then?"   "I asked them the same thing, and unfortunately it's

An Unexpected Diversion (Kirstia's Adventure, Chapter 20)

Broken Tower Redoubt. Once upon a time, the an Imperial cohort posted in the fortress stood watch over the road from Karthwasten to Rorikstead. Indeed, even as the system of castra stativa crumbled during the late Third Era, Broken Tower - notwithstanding its eponymous third tower - remained relatively well maintained and staffed. Only the Great War finally emptied the garrison, and only briefly; after Madanach's revolt, his own armies occupied the fort and declared it one of his kingdom's borde

The Troubles of the Reach (Kirstia's Adventure, Chapter 19)

I spent the next few hours relating to Senna the events that had occurred after the execution - the visit with Thonar Silver-Blood, our false arrest, and our subsequent escape. While we occasionally heard distant sounds of conflict outside, the temple remained untouched. Over time, a few citizens passed within, seeking shelter from the violence, and they brought tales of fighting in the streets between the Forsworn and the city guards - and later, Imperial reinforcements arriving from the nearby

Chosen By Three Gods (Kirstia's Adventure, Chapter 18)

It struck me as I left Madanach's chamber that this would be the point where I stopped being an innocent prisoner. Grisvar might deserve what he was getting, but it was still murder. But it was also what my king asked me - ordered me - to do, and I was going to do it. Shortly after that, I caught sight of Runs-With-Sticks and waved him over.   "I'm looking for Grisvar the Unlucky," I said, my words hushed.   "Ohh, you don't want to see Grisvar. He's a creep, and what's worse,

I Will Escape Cidhna Mine (Kirstia's Adventure, Chapter 17)

After a brief discussion of our options, we decided not to confront the Beast immediately. Instead, we proceeded deeper into the mines, speaking to the prisoners in hopes of finding clues to the big Orc's weaknesses - or his desires. Few wanted to talk to us, with our conversations ranging from irritation to concern that we'd bring down punishment on them for talking to us. At length, we entered a partially flooded chamber. From the sound of a pick on metal, I could tell there was someone else d

No One Escapes Cidhna Mine (Kirstia's Adventure, Chapter 16)

I didn't see the way to Cidhna Mine - before we left the Shrine the guards pulled a hood over my head and cinched it tight. Moreover, dashing my hopes that my distinctive body paint would draw notice, they wrapped me in a heavy cloak. From the noises and protests I heard, I believe they did the same for mother and Jenassa. We walked a way, and from the hanged woman's ongoing wailing I knew we had crossed the bridge back into Riverside. Then, I felt the ground underfoot change from marble slabs t

Punishment and Injustice (Kirstia's Adventure, Chapter 15)

I collapsed almost as soon as we got inside the temple. There were deep cuts across my torso, some from the torture I'd endured I'm sure, but also some from the final, desperate struggle to get free. Evidently, despite my last minute dodge, the butler's dagger had cut deep into my midsection. Senna and a neophyte helped mother lay me down and wash my wounds, first with water and then with more caustic solutions that stung intensely. As this occurred, the neophyte gasped and staggered back. I saw

In The House of The Nose (Kirstia's Adventure, Chapter 14)

We napped through the rest of the morning, trying to make up for at least some of our lost sleep the night before. Over a light lunch of bread and cheese, we talked through our options one more time, and settled on Nepos. If there was even a chance that this man was actually an ally to us, I wanted to secure his support before we investigated the Silver-Blood family directly.   Jenassa waved a hand towards the lockers at the back of the temple hall. “Are you going to get your armor?”

An Exchange of Favors (Kirstia's Adventure, Chapter 13)

The sun was just cresting the city walls as we entered the Silver Blood Inn. I’d expected the inn to be quieter at this early hour, but many travelers were already rousing and filtering in to the common room to sate their hunger. It was clear right away that the barkeeper and his wife both were too busy for me to question them right now, but I saw their daughter, Sharli, who’d served us when we visited before. She was sweeping up near one of the halls, and I approached her with a smile.  

Rough Company (Kirstia's Adventure, Chapter 12)

I woke up in the middle of the night feeling restless and unsettled. The temple lights had been mostly extinguished, leaving only a few small candles to cast shadows about the hall. My motion also awakened Mother, who had been sleeping next to me, cuddled against my body.   "Daughter?" she asked blearily, "do you need something?"   I'd been having a strange dream. I was back in the Warrens, in that passage where the Argonian and his friends had ambushed me. But now I was tied

Power Overload (Kirstia's Adventure, Chapter 11)

As the door to Bothela's cellar shut behind us, I had a sudden realization: I'd again completely forgotten to read the note I'd received the night before.    "What's that?" Edippa asked as I pulled the papers out of my satchel.   "A man handed me this note last night. I meant to read it over breakfast, but I got distracted."   Edippa barked out a quick laugh, "distracted, eh, daughter? Is that what you call it now?"   I shrugged, "I mean, I'm not wrong, am

Getting Comfortable (Kirstia's Adventure, Chapter 10)

I had a sense of floating, of not quite inhabiting my body. I felt hands on my body, gently rubbing me down with warm washcloths, then padding me dry again. I heard indistinct voices: concerned, angry, resolute. I couldn't follow the conversation, but I'm sure I heard more than once the word blasphemy.    At length, my senses started to come back to me. I opened my eyes, then immediately squeezed them shut against the light. More cautiously, I opened them slowly and found myself lying

Humility and Outrage (Kirstia's Adventure, Chapter 9)

The afternoon's exercise completely took whatever energy I'd regained out of me. I managed to roll out of bed enough to drop into the balcony chair for a light breakfast, but that was my limit. The warmth rising off the fire pit and the bard's music and songs made for a soothing dinner, but every time I tried to put my mind to the coming day's tasks I soon found myself wandering off into daydreams. I felt... I don't know. I felt like a foreigner in my skin. It wasn't that I was upset about the e

Healing, Shopping, and Training (Kirstia's Story, Chapter 8)

I finally rose from the bed after dozing off once or twice more. Finding a jug of fruity red wine next to my bed, I slaked my immediate thirst as Edippa returned to our room.   "Ah," she said, "you're finally up."    "For now," I laughed, "I feel pretty worn down."   Nodding, Edippa agreed, "that doesn't surprise me. We made a long journey by foot, and you didn't get proper rest for a lot of it. We'll take things easy today, then tomorrow we'll travel to Markarth by

The Long Road to Sleep (Kirstia's Story, Chapter 7)

The dawn gently coaxed me back to wakefulness. Edippa had risen a time earlier and prepared a light breakfast from our provisions. After enjoying the warmth of the sun for a few moments more, I joined her and slaked my thirst.   "Divines," I complained, "I'm still dead tired. I think we'll need to stop at Whiterun just like you suggested."   Edippa smiled at that, offering me a mug with what turned out to be wine in it.    "I figured you might feel that way. You str

Milk, Brass, and Stone (Kirstia's Story, Chapter 6)

I woke up back in the elf's hiding spot. Edippa was sorting through a pile of odds and ends laid out on the table, and paused in her work when I sat up.   "Daughter, I see you're awake," she said.    I shook my head a few times to try and clear the fog from my mind before answering, weakly, "more or less."   Edippa smiled indulgently. "Considering yesterday's ordeal, I'm not surprised. But we did it. You did it, considering I couldn't help you during the final battl

The Word (Kirstia's Story, Chapter 5)

"Daughter, wake up."   I roused reluctantly. You wouldn't think it, but the ill-fated Bosmer's hidey-hole was actually a rather comfortable place to rest. The large hearth kept the entire chamber well-warmed, even the stone floor, and a spacious chimney prevented smoke from building up even after many hours. Still, I pulled myself back to the present and found Edippa looking down at me.     Unbidden, a thought passed into my mind, and then from my lips.  

Traps, Locks, and Sapphires (Kirstia's Story, Chapter 4)

My father was a traitor. And yet, strange as it sounds, he was deeply concerned with honor. Indeed, it with his sense of honor that led his to forswear his oath. When I was little, he told the story in simple words - once upon a time, he served a strong Jarl. At first, they were as brothers, fighting side by side for justice and glory. But in time, his Jarl grew cruel and corrupt, and no longer brought justice to the people. And so, with a deep sadness in his heart, he turned against his Jarl an

The Haunting of Ivarstead (Kirstia's Story, Chapter 3)

A strange dream haunted my sleep. I was there, sitting alone on my bed, as the women who'd been sitting at the bar the night before barged into the room.    "Well, look at the birthday girl," said the Dunmer woman.   "I think we should give her something special," said a woman dressed like a tavern wench, her face covered by a dark cowl. Glowing red eyes peeked over the top, watching me hungrily.   "Yes," the older Nord woman said, "I think she needs a birthday span


gregaaz in Kirstia's Adventure

Meeting Mother in the Fatherland (Kirstia's Story, Chapter 2)

As the sounds of the rowboat faded behind me, I walked up the beach and into the treeline. Under the bright moon, I didn't have much trouble finding my way around, and soon the rasp of sand changed to the crunch of snow. It reminded me in a sense of Northpoint, another land blanketed by snow, but there was something different here from my old home. Northpoint had been... almost a wasteland. Even at the peak of summer, life struggled to persist, and as the lines of communication between the other


gregaaz in Kirstia's Adventure

Whispers in the Coals (Kirstia's Story, Chapter 1)

"Hear me, Kirstia."   The words shook me, snapping me out of the warm haze of the glowing embers. I'd spent my last copper Septim the night before buying a meager loaf of bread, and now I was well and truly destitute. The lord's bannermen had evicted me from my father's home weeks ago now, and without the coin to rent a room at the inn, I was reduced to passing the night behind the blacksmith's forge, borrowing what meager heat it had to offer.     "Hear me, Kirsti


gregaaz in Kirstia's Adventure

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