Morrowind Character Guide Series: The Pilgrim
For those who watch my let's plays and livestreams, you'll know that we're all about role-playing and not at all about min-maxing. This series is not about the ultimate [insert class] build, let's face it, sooner or later your character will be a god-killer whether you min-max or not. In addition we tend to always want to play the same way, with the same style, the same weapons, the same game play. So instead, I want to suggest ways to play a class and mods that can make the experience fresh and more unique. For more general role-playing mod recommendations, you can check this guide.
Skills, Race, and Birthsign
The Pilgrim's main attributes are Personality and Endurance. Looking at the skills, Agility increases quickly, especially if you intend to use a shield and a short blade.
Mostly for role-playing purposes, I like the Dunmer who recently arrived in Vvardenfell, trying to understand his heritage, visiting cities and places of religious significance. +5 Marksman and +10 Short Blade helps.
Looking at stats, an Altmer or Breton to do well with restoration and Illusion to keep you healthy, and to calm enemies too strong for you. I imagine the Breton or Altmer pilgrim is journeying in search of knowledge. A Bosmer to kill enemies with your bow before they get to you is a smart choice, though I am not sure what the motives of a Bosmer Pilgrim in Vvardenfell could be.
I'd go with the Steed, you want the speed bonus since you will be travelling a lot. Somehow using transport or spells to complete a pilgrimage feels like a massive cheat...
Gameplay and Mods
As a Pilgrim, you will want to kill or at least seriously injure your enemies with a bow. Since you are on the road so much, being able to craft your own ammo will save your money (maybe even your life!) For marksman related mods, check the Archer Guide.
Also because you are on the road, knowing your plants and herbs is a bonus. For mods related to alchemy, see the Healer Guide.
While the Pilgrim's purpose is to seek truth and enlightenment by travelling, you could also join a religious faction. If your Pilgrim wants to join the Temple or the Imperial Cult, see the Crusader Guide.
If you intend to use Hand-To-Hand and/or worship the Daedra, read the Monk Guide.
All right, now that you are set with combat related skills, we need places worth going to and things to see...
Cities like new
We want the Pilgrim to (re)discover Vvardenfell: cities and points of interest overhauls. They probably won't be suitable for every game: some are too fancy, too large or not entirely lore-friendly... but they'll be great for the Pilgrim experience. The idea is to use the mods you've never tried before. Unless specified otherwise, pick only one for each town.
- Seyda Neen - Imperial Port by Aitrius. I adore this Seyda Neen, this is the one I'd pick for a pilgrim: you've never seen Seyda Neen like this.
- Immersive Seyda Neen by DremoraLord98 is one of my favourites, I did a YouTube review shortly after the mod was released. The best Seyda Neen mod if you want to stay close to vanilla.
- TM - New Seyda Neen by johanrosen a.k.a Trancemaster, or the very early Morrowind Rebirth town expansion mod for Seyda Neen. A little over the top for me, but remember, we are looking for a fresh experience here.
- Hla Oad Expanded by Fashayshay.
- Gnaar Mok Expanded by Hobbit#3/Potter9156: expands the village into the water but keeps it as a humble fishing village.
- New Gnaar Mok by Melchior Dahrk. A more expansive overhaul with shacks as well as houses, docks, and even a few quests.
- Gnisis Expanded (G:Ex) by Craigor is the largest expansion for Gnisis.
- TM - New Gnisis by Trancemaster: another early town expansion from the author of Morrowind Rebirth.
The next few mods should be compatible with either of the previous ones:
- Gnisis Waterfront by Crankgorilla.
- RR Mod Series - Better Gnisis Arch by Morrowind Community and Resdayn Revival Team. A mod inspired by concept art as is often the case with RR mod series.
- Stav's Boxes - Gnisis Minaret by Stavroguin. Adds a minaret to the temple and priests with dialogues.
- Gnisis Docks by Gavrilo93 and PoodleSandwich. Adds docks to Gnisis after you complete the Widow Vabdas' land deed quest.
- Khuul Expanded by Casey Tucker. Adds shacks, services, NPCs, and a small quest. Keeps a vanilla vibe.
- Khuul Expansion by Crankgorilla: plenty to discover there! Crankgorilla's mods are usually colourful and not always lore-friendly. This is the perfect example of a mod I'd use for a special playthrough, such as the Pilgrim but not for a general purpose install.
- Ald Velothi Complete by saltmummy626. This mod is... very complete! Your Pilgrim will not regret the journey to Ald Velothi.
- Tales of Ald Velothi by Team Balmora Bandits (Enclavekiller, Greatness7, Lady Phoenix Fire Rose, and PikachunoTM). Give the town new clutter and new quests. Highly recommended.
- Maar Gan Extended by ManualIntelligence.
- Epic Dagon Fel by MikeAndIke, the only mod of the epic series I use.
- Dagon Fel Mill by Thondur. (Should be fine with Epic Dagon Fel.)
OAAB Tel Mora by Melchior Dahrk. You want this.
Vos / Tel Vos
- Vos Expansion by Princess Stomper adds a few services and an optional plantation.
- Vos X by Pinsvinnn is somewhat larger, might hit your FPS more as well.
Then add all of these:
- RR Mod Series - Telvanni Lighthouse Tel Vos by Resdayn Revival Team.
- Tel Vos Tower by Melchior Dahrk to make Tel Vos as impressive as it should be.
- Tel Vos - Dungeon Overhaul by Tel Shadow so the inside is as impressive.
- Alternatively, you can install the following mod INSTEAD of the previous two: Tel Vos Overhaul XTREME by Team 404 (Tel Shadow and Pulseflame) that overhauls both the exterior and the dungeon.
- Sadrith Mora Expanded by Karpik777. A large overhaul that includes a dungeon, alpha release.
- Sadrith Mora Expanded by Hlaalu66. My favourite.
- Epic Sadrith Mora by MikeandIke. Adds many pods to the city to make it look epic. They don't have interiors but the overall effect is impressive.
- Molag Mar X by Pinsvinnn. Like all the mods in the X series, FPS can be an issue but the visual improvements are great.
- Molag Mar Revisited 3.0 by Two Moons Productions (The_Nordavarine & Kaophyre): a rather colourful overhaul of the ugly city. Another I'd use for the Pilgrim but no other playthrough.
- New Molag Mar Fixed by Max. The most extreme overhaul, far far far from vanilla, just for the Pilgrim, a more eccentric one at that.
- Fortified Molag Maar by Team Voluptuous Velks (OperatorJack, Petethegoat, RedFurryDemon, Wolli). What it says on the tin. Besides giving the city a new (lore-friendly) look, also adds quests and services.
- Tel Branora LightHOUSE by Pinsvinn and Resdayn Revival Team.
- New Suran by the Wanderer: adds houses, manors, and shops to Suran.
- Suran Extended Gold by Princess Stomper. The most colourful of the three: Suran is now a lovely place ideal for tourists with hotels, restaurants, palm trees and pretty lights. My pick for the pilgrim.
- Docks of Suran by Vallylilly. Makes Suran a more commercial town with docks and improved plaza.
- Dramatic Vivec by LondonRook. The Vivec mod I wish my PC could handle. Vivec is gorgeous, each canton is recognizable thanks to banners, road signs, planters and various clutter. Love it even though my FPS drops to 10.
- The other very large mod: Redesigned Vivec by Hoghead the Horrible, tweaked by MaeseAtorrante. This mod adds a lot of docks and shacks around Vivec so it looks like a place where people live and trade.
- Now for the Palace itself, the real goal for the Pilgrim. All 4 mods are compatible.
- Palace of Vekh by EnclaveKiller, improved the interior of the Palace.
- Illuminated Palace of Vivec by Vojteek, makes the stairs up to the Palace more impressive.
- Passage of Prayers by Leyawynn Sataniel and Remiros, makes the passage of prayers a worthy pilgrimage.
- Meteorite Ministry by Zorbator.
(Both mods compatible.)
- Dragon Statue Replacer by Melchior Dahrk.
- MNC: Ebonheart by Mercarryn and this patch to discover a whole village right next to the fort, with NPCs, dialogues, services but no quests.
(All mods compatible.)
- Pelagiad Greenhouse v1.0 by Crankgorilla.
- Get Sharp by Rubberman, adds a gorgeous (and functional) forge to Pelagiad and Fort Buckmoth.
- A Windmill for Pelagiad by Mr. C. Racer.
- Pelagiad Revisited by Ennet Winterhoof.
- City of Balmora - Hlaalu Expansion by Praedator - EnvyDeveloper. Install the City of Balmora - Quest Locations Only version! This mod is not only a town expansion but also a very large quest mod. Still being developed.
- Balmora Expansion v1.4 by Gorg & CanadianIce & Jeremy. Super classic! Once again, too much for a regular game, perfect for the Pilgrim.
- Epic Balmora by MikeandIke. Adds many purely decorative buildings to make the city look epic.
- Balmora Guilds Expanded by Lucevar: Mages Guild, Fighters Guild and Temple get new exteriors and a few quests. Compatible with the previous mods. A gem.
Pick one of the first 2 mods, add the last 3 if you want.
- Better Caldera by Loki the Grouch. The classic. Unless I am mistaken this is now part of Morrowind Rebirth.
- Improved Caldera by SorcererSorcerer.
- Caldera Mine Expanded by Greatness7, Melchior Dahrk, and TheDrunkenMudcrab. Quite a sight, also comes with quests.
- Windmill in Caldera v1.0 by Ayse.
- The latest addition: 21 new quests around Caldera and a new shop: Carelessly Crazy Caldera Community by Team Suran Suran (Gavrilo93, RubberMan, Caeris). You will love the shop with new models and the dialogues.
- Ald-ruhn X by Pinsvinnn. My personal favourite though once again, very bad on my FPS.
- Ald-ruhn by Crankgorilla. Lots to see, lots to do but not entirely lore-friendly. Another one I'd pick for the pilgrim but no other character.
- Epic Ald-ruhn by MikeandIke: lots and lots of houses! (Still no interiors.)
- Ald-ruhn Temple Expansion by Xeth-Ban. Ideal for the Pilgrim: you do want to see places of religious significance more than anything else. Install this patch if you have Mountaneous Red Mountain installed (recommended). Not compatible with Ald-ruhn X.
- Ghostgate 1.3 by Princess Stomper. Use only if you don't intend to do the main quest (or possibly install after you've completed it). This mod re-imagines the Ghostgate a year after the defeat of Dagoth Ur: a theme park of sorts that commemorates the heroic actions of the Nerevarine. Looks like a worthy pilgrimage.
- RR Mod Series - Ghostgate by Resdayn Revival Team. Beautiful, impressive and lore-friendly.
- Mountaneous Red Mountain by PirateLord, makes the Red Mountain a true sight to behold.
- Mournhold Expanded Complete v1.51 by Princess Stomper et al. Turns Mournhold into the perfect vacation spot.
- Mournhold Overhaul by TRJTA (includes Vurt's Mounrhold Tress I). This is the Mournhold you know, only prettier.
Unique landscapes, and POIs
- Vvardenfell and Solstheim Worldspace Remaster by Wolli and VSW contributors. A beautiful overhaul that comes in a modular version (landscape, grahical replacers, grass mod... Follow the install instructions in the read me. You can follow this mod in the Morrowind modding discord and get the latest updates.
- Shrine of Mount Assarnibibi by Istreddify. Lovely overhaul of a place of great religious significance. Get it.
- The Grove of Ben Abi by Remiros. An actual pilgrimage: get there, read the stone steles. Also looks gorgeous.
- Valley of the Wind Overhaul by Leyawynn. Great visual improvement, make the walk to the Cave of the Incarnate epic.
- Cavern of the Incarnate by Aoimevelho. Makes the cavern really beautiful.
- Seven Graces Shrines Enhanced by QueenLunara. Love those, the shrines now look unique and lovely. Minor incompatibility with Starfire's NPC additions.
- RR Mod Series - Holamayan Monastery Replacer by Morrowind Community and Resdayn Revival Team. Anything that says RR Mod Series is gold.
- Ashlander Camps Expanded by Twilotspankle.
- Winds of Sheogorad - A Landscape Overhaul by CarrotFerret. Make the whole region colder and similar to Solstheim (because it is as far north as the island).
- Ash Mire by R-Zero, Adds a large mud pit in the foyada south of Bthuand and Zergonipal, an area otherwise without interest.
- Better Landscapes - Stonewood Pass by Mag1cWind0w and Melchior Dahrk. Completely redesigns the region between Caldera and Balmora. Gorgeous.
- Redaynia Village by DarkElfGuy.
- Kogoruhn Expanded by Greatness7, Remiros, PhDinSorcery, and Meriyal. Doubles as a dungeon mod.
- Andasreth Stronghold - dungeon and exterior overhaul by Rytelier5.
- Plunder the (Tel Fyr) Dungeon by Gavrilo93, because that's one of the more unique places in Vvardenfell.
- Kummu Monastery by Thondur, use the esp from Kummu Monastery Revisited by l1lartur0.
Trees, fastest way to change the landscape
- Vality Bitter Coast Trees. The most radical: trees are so huge the Bitter Coast is a whole different place. Even though the models are not as nice as other replacers, the overall effect is great.
- Vurt's Bitter Coast Trees II - Remastered and Optimized by Vurt and Rytelier, the most popular tree replacer for the Bitter Coast.
- Remiros' Ascadian Isles Trees 2, the mod most recommended for the Ascadian Isles.
- Melchior's Mallorn Trees in the Ascadian Isles by Quevler. Absolutely gorgeous, might make your FPS cry.
- Vurt Ascadian Isles Mod by Vurt. The most magical of all, I've used this one often but I understand it might be too pretty for some.
- Vanilla-friendly West Gash Tree Replacer by Melchior Dahrk. The mod all the guides recommend (for good reasons!)
- Vurt's Leafy West Gash II. The title says it all, trees are not all dead, and most of them are in fact, green.
- Vurt's Ashlands Overhaul. I am personally a fan of the big creepy trees but if you are not, there is a version that stays closer to vanilla.
- For a vanilla look: Vurt's Grazeland Trees II - Vanilla Friendly Edition
Vurt's Grazeland Trees II - Vanilla Friendly Edition by Leyawynn and Vurt.
- With large baobabs and optional palm trees: Vurt's Grazeland Trees II.
- Vurt's Solstheim Trees Replacer II and this small fix.
- Mournhold Flora Redux by CptJoker. The vanilla look but better.
- Vurt's Mournhold Trees II. With pink cherry blossom trees.
- Defensive Staffs SoNico717 & Pest1lence, because we need our walking stick.
- Stuporstar's Travel Trunk.
- Camping mods:
- With needs: Necessities of Morrowind (WanderRA Edit), includes bedrolls and cooking.
- Also with needs and temperature effects: Ashfall by Merlord, join the Morrowind Modding Discord for files and news.
- EasyCamping by LaurenceWithey. Simple mod to make a camp fire and spread a bedroll while on the road.
- Rollies by Stripes adds bedrolls with limited use.
- You can use No Rest without Beds by Kadeius, for the extra bit of challenge. Works with the 2 mods above.
- Sea Rover Tent by Tizzo. Perfect tent that you can enter, and roll up and carry when you are done.
- Not alone on the road mods:
- Morrowind Comes Alive by Neoptolemus, adds bandits but also traders and pilgrims. Also adds a bunch of NPCs to towns as well as companions.
- Starfire's NPC additions adds NPCs to town exteriors but also traders and pilgrims on the roads. Also try the Patrol add-on.
- Travelling Merchants by Cyran0 and GhanBuriGhan, adds merchants, a slaver, a bard... all going back and forth between cities.
I have reviewed these 3 mods (as well as a bunch of NPC addition mods) on YouTube, here's the playlist.
Handicaps and Goals
- Travel to every place of interest and survive! (Make that a permadeath run?)
- Do not use transports/spells to reach new places, i.e. you have to walk to a city before being allowed to teleport there.
- Here's a challenge for you: Don't do quests! Travel, explore, keep a couple of books to read when you are camping and again, survive! (Veni, Vidi, We didn't die)
- For more role-playing ideas, check out Gavrilo's blog, especially his Tourist role-play.
If you want more ideas for random handicaps and goals, check this blog entry with wheels to click, you can find my permadeath modlist (and all the others, actually) here and if you'd like to see many new characters created, join us on Twitch every Sunday for our permadeath runs ;)