Wednesday, September 19, 2012

EBM WIP: plans for EBM v2

Due to real world life I was not able to post any update about EBM for months, neither could I work on the mod, not even could I play Skyrim! (how bad is that!?) But I kept on thinking and planning what should be done for the v2... Overall I plan to redo everything in way to get the mod as clean as possible. And I think the library it should feature might be nicknamed "Little Apocrypha".

What EBMv2 should contain
  • More new books
  • Books from the previous games, from Arena to Oblivion (yes!)
  • A giant secret library to sort and store all those books in several samples
  • Bibliographies listing books related to a same topic (ex: Dwemers) and where to find them in the library, and possibly compendiums with excerpts related to a given topic
  • (optional) retextured assets to serve as signs to find your way in the library
  • (optional) more textures for book covers (including mere color variations)

  1. Listing and sorting all the books in categories and sub-categories
  2. Planning the spatial organization of the library
  3. Building and testing the library cells
  4. Adding, placing and compiling all the new books
  5. Test, fixing, test, fixing...
  6. Release

What's being done currently
[update] I finished listing and sorting the books, basing me on the Imperial Library. So far I have listed 331 titles (not books but titles of one-shots and series) and 197 of those titles are yet in Skyrim though some series (like the Wolf Queen) are incomplete. However I didn't include books we aren't supposed to find (such as the Mysterium Xarxes, diaries and other quest-related books). This makes yet around 200 books to format and implement and some include pictures.
I tag the books with keywords about their content that will help for bibliographies, and assign them to fitting categories which are divided into:

  • Physics:
  • History (various eras)
  • Geopolitics (Nirn, Imperial Provinces, Guilds & Factions)
  • Fauna & Flora (races, creatures, plants, minerals)
  • Arts & Crafts (literature, smithing, cooking, etc.)
  • Metaphysics:
  • Monomyth
  • Aedra
  • Daedra (Princes, Lorkhan, Oblivion)
  • Cults (Orders, consequences of their deeds on Nirn)
  • Myths & Legends
  • Arcane Arts (magic of all schools and kinds)
  • Pain & Care (diseases, curses, etc.)
The goal of this sorting is to plan properly the level building of the library.

How to help
As you guess many books will fall into many categories but this way I hope to make the place as handy as possible for players who like to play scholars. I don't know how many there are but surely more than I think.
And of course, any help in the sorting and tagging would be very helpful, or if you've already created information compendiums or so, it would surely be very fitting.

If someone wishes to do some retexturing I'd be very interested as well. For book covers of course, something based on the Book of the Dragonborn or Spell Tomes could be nice since those book feature a different textures for back and front covers, allowing to differentiate them more. But also for some assets such as banners and rugs that would be used as signs for the different parts of the library.

If you have ideas and suggestions, they're also very welcomed of course.