Here’s the first working man in Anvil Nova. It’s a joy to see when the NavMesh and AI packages come together and really work as intended. Orvar works outside during the days and goes inside during the evenings. His wife runs the shop inside.
I wanted to start with the town smith because he creates nice, atmospheric sounds when he’s working during the days. His hammering can be heard all over town.
NavMesh is the fear of all Skyrim modders. NavMesh is the area which specifies where NPC’s can walk and move, and it needs to be done for both exteriors and interiors. In the editor it shows up as a red area made up of lots of little triangles pasted on the environment. In-game, it doesn’t show at all, so the player won’t notice a thing. Only when NPC’s start moving strangely or followers stop following.
Most of Anvil Nova is done with NavMesh at this point and looking fine. In some sick, perverted, way I find it fun too to create NavMesh, although it’s considered probably the most tedious process in the entire modding experience in Skyrim. I think Bethesda could have solved this better.
I need to start by NavMeshing the towns and cities and then the roads in-between them properly. All other NavMesh will be half-hearted until later. If I try to do all the NavMesh perfectly from the start, I’ll drown under the workload. So a bit at a time. At least, Anvil Nova is going to function perfectly with NPC’s and NavMesh by the next alpha update! Yay!
NavMesh in Anvil Nova.
Creating NPC’s is a lot of fun and actually one of my favourite parts. Here’s one of the city guards in Anvil Nova already. Fully uniformed and ready to serve and protect.
I might release an addition to the alpha later on when I’ve created all the NPC’s in the capital and in its surrounding areas so you’ll get to see how they really affect the atmosphere of the place.
Move along, Outlander!
A video-tour of Anvil Nova, with focus on the harbour area.
This is the view Frontier supplies when you approach Anvil Nova from the north. If the weather permits, it really looks quite impressive. The city of Anvil Nova is seen there to the left. Farms and mills dot the landscape around the city; to the right, you can see Cilicia Prison. At the top of the scene, you can see Godfrey island and the town of Vestra, which is situated on what looks like a peninsula from this distance.
The horizon looks better in vanilla lighting. I’m using a mod. Nonetheless, I do need to work on the horizon. Either resizing the worldspace to extend further south will help, or I’ll use some other trickery.
I was really not satisfied with how the harbour in the city of Anvil Nova looked. It was just a couple of docks sticking out into the water and it didn’t look like an important port, where a lot of trade goes, in any way.
So I redesigned it only by pulling the lighthouse further out into the sea, built docks leading up to it, and also built a harbour fort on the other side. Now it looks like these two constructions create a framework for the harbour and it looks much more impressive in-game. More ships and docks added as well. And clutter to reflect the ongoing trade with the rest of Tamriel.
This is probably the hundredth redesign of the City of Anvil Nova. Geez. When will I be completely satisfied with it!?
This is the redesigned harbour at Anvil Nova. The new fort is seen to the left, the lighthouse to the right.
The updated city map of Anvil Nova. The harbour looks much more appropriate for a bustling medieval city.
I am quite proud of this interior. I finished it some time ago, but haven’t showed it here yet. It’s the inside of one of the taverns in the City of Anvil Nova. This place will be very popular. Mark my words.
"The Dark Corner"
The Castle of Anvil Nova was the only larger structure on the Frontier when the Imperial colonists arrived on the continent. It used to be the home of the glorious king Rureek who ruled over the “Shining Kingdom” that spanned most of the continent. When the Imperials arrived, the “shining kingdom” was long-gone, and the continent had fallen into internal conflicts. The foundations of castle are probably thousands of years old.
The settlers had no problems conquering the south of The Frontier and the castle became their base. The Imperial conquerors added to the castle successively as the town of Anvil Nova started flourishing around it. Today, it is the home of “The Protektor” and his de-facto court. Protektor is an inherited title and has all the symbolism and implementations of an Imperial County, but in theory, the title is supposed to correspond to a regular governor. The title was created to please the Imperial Court in Cyrodiil, and as to not declare full-fledged independence from the Empire. The Empire hasn’t been too keen on recognizing The Frontier as an official part of the Empire anyways, but there are still hopes that The Frontier can one day join the Empire as a proper County.
I have redesigned the very centre of Anvil Nova. I moved the entire castle a bit north and created a ledge in front of it on the rock where it sits. It was a lot of work moving this structure, as all land had to correspond to the movement as well. Geez. I did operations like this in Dibella’s Watch several times, moving large structures about, and they’re always tedious, but the end result is also always satisfying. On this ledge, I will now create a “Forum Romanum“, a small town square surrounded by government buildings, like the First Minister’s residence and possibly a proper Roman bath and things like that.