Modder's Interview: Markond

Modder's Interview: Markond

How long have you been modding and what was your first complete mod?

Modding as in using mods would be whenever a little while after The Sims 2 came out. I looked it up and now I feel old. Actually modding things myself would be for Oblivion around 2010 if we count patching broken landseams and fixing item placements for myself. I learned how to use Xedit really well after Skyrim was released, but again nothing got published. Actually modding for real with the intent to share it would be early 2021 with my Erabenimsun mod.

How do you approach modding?

Either something becomes enough of an issue that I decided to solve it, or there is something I want to have and nobody has made it.  A lot of my mods are landmarks because I enjoy making them and am generally terrible at navigating which they somewhat solve. The Erabenimsun mod happened because I would regularly levitate right over the camp and not see it. Eye of the Needle was because I could never reliably find the Shrine of Azura. My scarf mod was just me wanting more choice of scarves on my character. Scarfs and capes are my weakness.

What’s your favourite thing about modding?

Decorating. I like making interior spaces and filling them with stuff, and burying little threads of storytelling in them.

What’s your favourite mod that you’ve made so far?

St Rilms Beacon.

St Rilms Beacon is a neat mod that adds a small inn for pilgrim son their way to the Ghostgate from Ald-ruhn.

Is there a mod you are especially proud of?

One I haven't released and it's such a small thing. OAAB Tombs and Towers added a unique mesh to Magebane and I fell absolutely in love with it, but I also have the glowing glass mod to satisfy my magpie cravings for shiny glowy things and Magebane didn't glow, unfortunately. A frustrating evening later of comparing records between a glowing sword and Magebane trying to figure just which one was the right one and I have now a pretty glowmapped sword and hate nifskope. I never released it because I’m very particular about asking for permissions and sadly never got an answer back.

Are you working on a mod these days?

Eye of the Needle

I have a Balmora Undermarket mod sitting waiting for me to actually work on it properly. It started as me wanting easier access to some of TR and OAABs resources for decorating my house in-game, and at the same time, I was building a guildhouse for my MultiMW group. I ended up merging them with the intent to add a quest to acquire the rights to a suspiciously guildhouse shaped disused travellers hostel in Balmora. Then I remembered I hate doing quest scripting so it's sitting waiting for my guilt of not finishing it to outweigh my hate for quest work. That hasn't happened yet.


How much do you play Morrowind, not counting play testing?

I have these cyclic moods where I play nothing but Morrowind for several weeks, usually with a set goal in mind. Then I put it down and come back about a year later after going through my other games. Right now I only do testing, my yearly relapse isn’t due for a little while longer.

How did you discover Morrowind?

I’d played a lot of Oblivion and spotted it on one of those spinning display racks at a tech shop I used to frequent. It sat there for a few weeks with me considering it every time I passed by before it finally tempted me.

The Telvanni Ward Keeper

What makes Morrowind special for you?

There are these moments where I stand somewhere, just looking out at the landscape with the soft music and it just feels right. The Vivec cantons, sunset, facing east is one of the places that tend to evoke that feeling.

What are the mods you simply cannot play without?

Mountainous Red Mountain.  I was once entrusted to guide a whole gaggle of adventurers up Red Mountain on a MultiMW server with the goal to acquire Spellbreaker. Anybody who has ever had to deal with my sense of direction will tell you this was a bad idea from the start. Of the seven others that started the expedition two survived.

The Slavers Spire

Are there any underrated mods that you really enjoy?

MRM again. Recently I’ve noticed some people saying its badly made, or too old to be worth considering and that there are more modern alternatives, but none of them ever feel or look quite right to me.

Do you play other games?

Skyrim and more recently a lot of Skyrim VR. Fallout 4 VR but not Fallout 4 flat because it refuses to run even remotely well despite VR being fine. I am not bitter about that in the slightest. Enderal VR because I want it to make me sad in immersive first person. Monster Prom and Monster Camp are my multiplayer party games. Warframe and ESO sometimes.

Telvanni Sea Beacons

Do you mod other games?

Just Morrowind. I’ve considered it for other Beth games but inspiration has never really taken me.

Anything else you’d like to share that we haven’t talked about?

I’m impressed by the sheer longevity of the morrowind modding scene. Other games of a similar age and even ones a lot younger have completely fallen out of fashion among modders, but right now we’re in the middle of what might be called a renaissance with the possibilities opened by script extender lua mods, OpenMW, and various big projects like TR and OAAB still going strong.