Robbie mostly writes about Skyrim but also occasionally sheds light on the oddities of Microsoft applications such as Excel and Outlook.
Welcome to my guide on how to use Wyre Bash for Skyrim to improve game stability, mod compatibility, and optimize load order. Wyre Bash is a very powerful and versatile tool that is essential for everyone who uses mods and wants their game to be as stable as possible. You can use Wyre Bash for a number of things:
- First, it allows you to optimise your load order by telling you if your mods are not in the best order and sorting them into the best order to ensure that all your mods work together without conflicts
- Secondly, it will tell you if mods are missing dependencies
- Next, you can scan your mods for “dirty” edits and clean them using TES5Edit
- A Bashed Patch can be created that updates your levelled list to allow mods to better co-exist. A levelled list tailors loot, NPCs and spells to your character's level
- Wyre Bash will check if mods can be merged with your Bashed Patch to reduce the number of mods loaded
- Mods can be installed from Wyre Bash
- You can manage and clean your saved games
- Configuration files (Skyrim.ini and SkyrimPrefs.ini) can be tweaked from within the tool
Optimising Your Skyrim Mod Load Order Using Wyre Bash
If you are like me, you have a collection of some of the wonderful mods that have been written for Skyrim, and you install them to enhance, improve and extend the original game. If you are new to modding, I recommend you check out my mod on the Skyrim Nexus Mod website, which is the number one website for everything related to Skyrim mods.
What Is Load Order?
Skyrim uses a load order when loading these mods, starting with the first on the list and working through it loading each one in turn. You will need tools like Wyre Bash to ensure that the load order Skyrim uses is optimal for the mods that you have installed.
Issues or errors commonly occur when you have several mods that make changes to the same thing in Skyrim. The mod that “wins” is the one that is lowest in the mod order.
Suppose you have two mods:
- One that changes the look imperial shield and a helmet
- One that makes changes to the imperial shield
You like the changes made by the first mod to the helmet and the changes that the second makes to the shield.
In order to ensure that both changes take effect in the game, you need to have the second mod lower in the mod order so that Skyrim first changes both the shield and helmet using mod one before overwriting just the shield with the second mod
Wyre Bash will advise you about your load order using colours to indicate mods whose masters are in the correct order (coloured green) and whose masters are ordered incorrectly (orange)
You can see from the screenshot below that Hunterborn_RND-Patch.esp has incorrectly ordered Master files. On the right hand side you can see its Masters listed (the two orange Masters are the mods that need to be re-ordered).
Move the mods up or down the load order by dragging them
Note: By moving mods, you may cause mods that were green to become orange. Continue to fix mods with load order issues until you get all your mods coloured green.
Wyre Bash calculates the optimum load order every time you select, deselect or move a mod. When you add a large number of new mods, Wyre Bash may seem to be freezing; it is in fact continuously calculating the best load order for your selected mods.
Using Wyre Bash to Check if Your Mods Are Missing Dependencies
The next check that Wyre Bash performs on your mods is to ensure that all mods your mods are dependent on are also installed. As with the mod load order, Wyre Bash is continuously checking your mods for dependencies.
To illustrate this, I am going to rename one of my mods .esp files to convince Wyre Bash that one of my mods is missing a dependency.
You can see below that RealisticWater Two – Dragonborn is dependent on RealisticWater Two
I will now go into my Data folder and rename RealWaterTwo.esp to RealWaterTwo1.esp
WyreBash will freeze for a few seconds while it rechecks dependencies.
- Now you can see that Wyre Bash has done a number of things automatically
- First it removes Realistic Water Two from my load list
- Next, it added RealisticWaterTwo1.esp (this is what I renamed RealisticWaterTwo.esp to)
- Finally, it now reports that two mods are missing a dependency (they are now coloured red). Wyre Bash will tell you exactly which files are missing (they are coloured red and have no tick in the box under Masters on the right)
If I change the name back for the mod Realistic Water Two, everything returns to green automatically.
Using Wyre Bash to Install Mods in Skyrim
You can also use Wyre Bash to install mods.
To begin installing mods, click on the Installer tab
Wyre Bash will then refresh the installers for your mods (this will take around a minute or two to complete)
To install or uninstall mods from here, simply right click and select the appropriate option
Note: If you install a mod that comes with a menu driven installer (such as Realistic Water 2 shown below), Wyre Bash will not display the menu. If you want to install mods that come with installers, you will need to use Mod Organiser or Nexus Mod Manager.
Nexus Mod Manager is an easy-to-use mod organiser with an excellent interface. It is designed for beginners and allows you to very easily download, install, uninstall and update your mods. It will also manage your load order automatically.
Mod Organizer is also a tool that will assist you in organising your mods. It does everything that Nexus Mod Manager does, but it also offers unique tools such as
- Profiles which allow you to have multiple mod lists and configuration files
- It also installs each mod into its own folder, keeping your Skyrim install clean and the mod separate to reduce mod issues
- It will also check your mods for conflicts
- A save game cleaning utility
Using Mod Checker in Wyre Bash to Check for Dirty Edits in Your Skyrim Mods
Wyre Bash also allows you to scan your mods for dirty edits. A dirty edit is when a mod author changes something (usually by accident) that the mod doesn’t need to change.
So, for example the author may make a mod that changes the Imperial helmet and accidentally leave in a change to the Imperial boots that they were experimenting with. This could mean that a mod that really does want to change the Imperial boots ends up conflicting with this unintended change. To use Wyre Bash to check for dirty edits:
- Click on the Mod Checker icon at the very bottom of the main screen
- Next, select Scan for UDR’s
Wyre Bash will go away and scan your mods. Once complete, you will receive a report similar to mine below:
Launch TES5Edit (from the bottom of the main Wyre Bash screen) to clean your mods.
Creating a Bashed Patch Using Wyre Bash to Safely Merge Spawn Points and Levelled Lists in Skyrim
The last thing we will look at with Wyre Bash is creating a Bashed Patch. This patch does three things, all of which help your mods to work together better.
- It looks for mods it can merge with the Bashed Patch to reduce the number of mods you use
- It ensures that all mods that create or use monster spawn points work together
- It merges the levelled list so that all mods that add items to it have their changes implemented
The reason that these steps are important is due to the way that Skyrim activates mods. It starts at the top of your order and implements the mods one by one. This could mean that if two mods make the changes to your levelled lists (the level at which certain objects appear in game) the one loaded last will win. The Bashed Patch will ensure that as far as is possible, all mods that change your levelled list or monster spawn points will have the changes implemented into your game.
Let’s look at that in more detail with an example. Suppose you have two mods that add monsters to a spawn point. They both add a monster that will appear when you reach level 10. Without a bashed patch, only the mod lowest in the mod order will get to actually place a monster in game when you reach level 10. With a bashed patch, both mods will be able to add a monster to the spawn point when you attain level 10.
To create your bashed patch:
- First, Wyre Bash will colour any mods that can be included in the Bashed Patch green (as with moveitLWT.esp in my picture below).
- Deselect any such mods before creating the patch
- Right click on Bashed Patch, 0.esp (Wyre Bash creates this automatically for your) and select Rebuild Patch
- Select all the boxes on the left except Alias Mod Names which you will likely never need
You can see that Wyre Bash has listed all the Mergeable Mods in the middle pane. Select Build Patch to recreate the patch
- Click OK on the Summary screen to return to Wyre Bash
Note: If you make any changes to your mods, installing, uninstalling or upgrading them to a new version, always recreate your Bashed Patch.
Wyre Bash is a very powerful tool and versatile that everyone who installs mods for Skyrim should use. Correct use of this tool will improve your games stability and make all those lovely mods work together to ensure that your game is stable and also that all your mods run as intended. Today, I looked at a number of different uses for Wyre Bash including:
- Optimising your mod load order
- Checking your mods for missing dependencies
- Installing mods
- Checking your mods for dirty edits
- Creating merged levelled lists and spawn points
I do hope that you found this guide useful and informative and that you are now happily using Wyre Bash to ensure that Skyrim is stable and that you are getting the best out of the mods you have installed. Thanks for reading, please feel free to leave a comment below.
© 2015 Robbie C Wilson