The modding community that inevitably blossomed around The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim was easily one of the most active and prolific hotbeds for user-generated content ever seen. And eight years later, this timeless gaming sandbox is still managing to maintain that position with a strong and enduring vigor. From subtle immersion enhancement to entire suites of DLC-quality content additions, the sheer volume and variety at one's disposal is nothing short of impressive.
Today, we're putting a spotlight on those mods. And not just any mods, but the two most extreme ends of the modding spectrum: humorous, joke mods that were never meant for anything more than a laugh, and massive, deeply-involved mods that alter the Skyrim experience into something almost entirely different. Keep scrolling to join us as we check out five of each!
10 CHANGES EVERYTHING: Cutting Room Floor
Cutting Room Floor doesn't necessarily change "everything," but it packs so much additional content into the game that starting a new playthrough with it will definitely result in a much different experience than players are accustomed to. The best part, though, is that this is all content that was originally intended to be in the game.
As most players likely know, Skyrim has a lot of cut or otherwise unused content hidden away in the game's files. Cutting Room Floor restores and finishes an impressive amount of this content, including quests, NPCs, locations, dialogue, and more.
9 HILARIOUSLY WEIRD: Bear Musician
If ever you felt like you needed a bard in tow to lend a musical and poetic flair to your unscrupulous bandit murder rampage, then this is definitely the mod for you. If you were picturing said bard as a bear, anyway. And you were, weren't you?
Simple and to the point, this mod certainly can't be accused of false advertising. Installing it will provide your Dovahkiin with a spell entitled "Bear with Lute," which, well, summons a bear with a lute to serenade you, or lay down an epic soundtrack for your next dragon wrangling episode.
8 CHANGES EVERYTHING: Super Skyrim Bros.
Deciding whether to categorize Super Skyrim Bros. under "Hilariously Weird," or "Changes Everything" was no small task, since it effectively manages both at once. However, given that it almost turns Skyrim into a different game altogether, here it sits and fits.
Though the combat still hinges on Skyrim's base mechanics, the rest is a full-on Mario adventure. You'll venture through the Mushroom Kingdom to defeat Bowser and save Princess Toadstool, all while battling classic Mario enemies, collecting coins, leaping through platforming sequences, and much, much more.
7 HILARIOUSLY WEIRD: Macho Dragons & Really Useful Dragons
Paired because they essentially accomplish the same thing, these are by far some of the most classic and well known when it comes to the more absurd side of Skyrim modding, and with good reason.
Macho Dragons and Really Useful Dragons will swap Skyrim's entire dragon population out with Macho Man Randy Savage and Thomas the Tank Engine, respectively, complete with the relevant sound effects. You really haven't played Skyrim until you've seen the Macho Man himself unleash a gout of searing flames with a resounding "OH YEAH!"
6 CHANGES EVERYTHING: Ordinator - Perks Of Skyrim
Skyrim's perk system catches a lot of flack for altogether "dumbing down" the famously in-depth progression systems in The Elder Scrolls series, and facing facts, there's not much else to see once you've worked your way through each skill tree a time or two.
Ordinator is aimed squarely at these complaints, taking Skyrim's comparatively simple perk selection and ballooning it with roughly four hundred all new perks, opening up an excitingly varied array of play styles and builds. Even cooler, NPCs will also make use of these new perks, lending combat a new depth to explore and master.
5 HILARIOUSLY WEIRD: Immersive Headsman
Did you find your immersion shattered when the headsman, abandoning any semblance of professionalism, failed to lop off your head in the face of a dragon assault during the game's introduction? Well, worry no further, because this mod will ensure he finishes the job.
That said, it looks like the headsman's job is just to take off your head, not necessarily to kill you. And that brings us to the real payoff here - you'll continue through the game as usual afterwards, just without your head. Now that's immersive.
4 CHANGES EVERYTHING: Requiem
In a nutshell, Requiem is an overhaul mod aimed at delivering a more immersive roleplaying experience with Skyrim. The list of changes and adjustments it makes to the core game is outstandingly lengthy, and they're better experienced than they are explained, but we'll try to hit all the big notes.
All of Skyrim's leveled content has been "deleveled," allowing for much more dangerous and realistic experience, so you'll want to think twice before taking on a pack of draugr. Skills and leveling up have been altered to be made more meaningful, the perk trees are entirely overhauled, and even armor is more realistic in application.
3 HILARIOUSLY WEIRD: Crimes Against Nature
Sure, Skyrim offers a selection of ten distinctly different races for the player to choose from. But after your billionth playthrough, the conventional options might get a little stale. So why not spice up your next venture by playing as a kitten controlling a robotic human torso? Perhaps the venerable Dovahbear, or... a guy with a chair for a head.
You can do all of the above and more with Crimes Against Nature, a mod that does exactly what it says it will do. Which is commit crimes against nature via the character selection screen. All of these new and ridiculous racial selections come complete with their own unique racial powers and abilities, to boot.
2 CHANGES EVERYTHING: Enderal: The Shards of Order
If any mod on this list actually changes "everything" about Skyrim, it's Enderal. It's essentially an entirely new game built within Skyrim's engine. We're talking an entirely new world, lore, NPCs (with full voice acting), spells, mechanics, skills, and a cherry on top.
Best described as awe-inspiring, there's legitimate debate to be had on whether Enderal constitutes a mod or a game in its own right. But given that it does need to operate over Skyrim, it is indeed a mod first, though that does understate the obvious passion and herculean effort that has gone into its development.
1 HILARIOUSLY WEIRD: Happy Fun Mode
It's the family friendly, even safer-for-work, and entirely wholesome Skyrim experience that everyone's always wanted! Happy Fun Mode removes (most) of the blood and gore from Skyrim. And it proceeds to actually replace those blood effects with confetti, feathers, and sparkly bits.
Sure, you'll still be able to decapitate your enemies with ruthless abandon, but Happy Fun Mode will see them produce an arterial spray of pure magical joy rather than that scary, icky crimson fluid produced by your typical, less happy and less fun beheading.