Creatures, NPCs and Players

updated July 8th, 2020

Ahhhh NPCs, those innocent beings that we all love to slaughter. Unfortunately, there's not much variety to them due to the dreaded excuse of "engine limitations". Note that this section can be somewhat lackluster at times. Skyrim  ̶h̶a̶s̶n̶'̶t̶ ̶b̶e̶e̶n̶ ̶a̶r̶o̶u̶n̶d̶ ̶l̶o̶n̶g̶ ̶e̶n̶o̶u̶g̶h̶ ̶t̶o̶ ̶h̶a̶v̶e̶ ̶r̶e̶a̶l̶l̶y̶ ̶g̶o̶o̶d̶ ̶c̶r̶e̶a̶t̶u̶r̶e̶ ̶m̶o̶d̶s̶ (when was this line written? 2012?), so we advise you to pick and choose whichever of these mods sound good to you!
 
In this section, we will discuss:
-Enemies and Monsters
-Followers
-Random NPCs
-NPC Appearance Makeover
 

Enemies and Monsters

Okay, so it's been almost 7 years, and there is STILL no big enemy overhaul mods that are actually good. So to remedy this, here are a list of some smaller ones.
Durzog

Durzog

This mod adds Durzogs to Skyrim, found mainly in the Reach and Falkrenth. Don't forget to get the SIC Patch: https://www.nexusmods.com/skyrimspecialedition/mods/38003

Clannfear

Clannfear

Adds to Skyrim Clannfears and their summoning spell.

Guars

Guars

Based on the awesome work by 4thUnknown this mod adds the passive Guars to Tamriel and Solstheim.

Mihail Monster Mods

Mihail Monster Mods

While he STILL hasn't made a monster compilation mod, Mihail has up to 8 PAGES of mods on the Nexus. The level of quality also varies severely from mod to mod.

Skyrim Immersive Creatures

Skyrim Immersive Creatures

Adds more variety of enemies to the game, with an MCM menu that allows you to disable enemies you dislike.

The Blood Horker (Bloodmoon Creature Restoration Project)

The Blood Horker (Bloodmoon Creature Restoration Project)

This mod adds the Blood Horker from Bloodmoon to Solstheim. It replaces all horkers on Solstheim and Horker Island with a unique skin and look.

Grahl - The Ice Troll

Grahl - The Ice Troll

This mod restores the deadly Grahl to the island of Solstheim. Grahls were an important enemy in the Morrowind: Bloodmoon DLC, but for some reason they weren't included in Dragonborn. Until now.

Diverse Dragons Collection 2.0

Diverse Dragons Collection 2.0

This mod strives to create a dragon mod like no other seen before, drawing resources from 11 different mod authors and utilizing MCM scripts to create unmatched flexibility.

High Level Enemies

High Level Enemies

Adds 874 new enemies starting at level 10 to Skyrim. This is a decent mod to get if your planning to play at a really high level and you don't feel like turning on Legendary difficulty on. These enemies are mostly just re-names, but some have varying stats and perks to make each a little bit different. There are several different optional ESPs for DLC, level scaling, and hardcore difficulty if you always want the game to be difficult even with the best weapons and armor in the game.

Immersive Patrols

Immersive Patrols

This mod adds some new NPC encounters to the game. They come in a wider variety such as roaming Imperial or Stormcloak soldiers, Thalmor agents, random travelers, and if you have the Dawnguard DLC you can get Dawnguard and Vampire patrols. Each group roams all across Skyrim and will attack enemies and anything that tries to harm them. It makes the roads a lot less empty now.

OBIS - Organized Bandits In Skyrim

OBIS - Organized Bandits In Skyrim

Now, instead of every bandit just being "bandit", they have names, groups, and more unique specifications. It doesn't do much with their stats, but does give them some seriously needed variety. Bandit groups sorta work how faction gangs worked in Fallout New Vegas. They each have specific skills and a certain uniform to uphold for the group they are in. Comes with MCM for extra customization!

Dwemer Spectres

Dwemer Spectres

Adds in the ghostly dwemer you remember from Morrowind, in several varieties, as well as several boss versions. Conflicts with Immersive Creatures since IC integrated this mod, however IC's spectre bosses are pussies and if you want an actual challenge you should use this version.

Cliff Racers - Solstheim

Cliff Racers - Solstheim

Adds Cliff Racers to Solstheim.

Followers

Followers are awesome, simple as that. They can range from adventurous sellswords you meet along your journey, or friends you make and travel together on amazing quests! /tesg/ followers are great because instead of having some random guy following you around, you have a little piece of /tesg/ sprinkled into your game. A person that you meet in the threads and want to adventure with and take great screenshots with. DON'T USE UFO. IT'S NOT OLD AS SHIT ANYMORE, BUT IT'S LOADED WITH BUGS.
Also, here are some unique followers.
Bears Mounts and Followers SE

Bears Mounts and Followers SE

Expands the Dovahbear meme to make him a follower AND a mount, ride the meme into the horizon!

Dwarven Luggage

Dwarven Luggage

A true pack mule mod. Dwarven Luggage adds dwarven spider chest that follows you around and helps hold a near limitless amount of weight within its interdimensional space. The Dwarven Luggage has a summon spell which allows you to call it to you along with all the gear you stashed on it, never loose your important gear again!

Inigo

Inigo

Inigo is a custom follower with his own voice, his own quest, and his own AI and stats. He's a very interesting follower who is well worth a try. Unlike other followers with voices, his DOESN'T sound awful.

Slave Pack Riekling Porter

Slave Pack Riekling Porter

This mod adds a little funny Riekling Porter with an oversized Backpack ready to carry your weights after you do him a little favor...

The Erotic Adventures of Misty Skye

The Erotic Adventures of Misty Skye

Download this. Seriously, I don't care if you're the purest motherfucker out there, this mod is funny as fuck. Adds a ton of content, quests a new dungeon and two companions that are hilarious.

Vilja in Skyrim

Vilja in Skyrim

Meme follower noº1. Lots of people seem to like her tho.

Sofia

Sofia

Meme follower noº2. Annoying as fuck.

Caesia

Caesia

Unique, with her own quest and relationship system, the modder promises a bigger quest involving her, to which part 1 is released.

Arissa - The Wandering Rogue

Arissa - The Wandering Rogue

Arissa is an Imperial with an independent, rebellious spirit and a gift for making expensive things disappear. She is a Skyrim companion character with over 600 lines of dialogue, professionally recorded and beautifully voiced by the talented Nikkita.

Extensible Follower Framework

Extensible Follower Framework

This IS the best follower overhaul to date. UFO is broken as hell since it hasen't been updated for quite some time, and AFT has less options than EFF. This mod allows you to further customize your followers traits. You can change where they live, how they fight, what they wear, and how they follow you! The follow cap is also set to infinite so you can actually make a real army of followers!

Amazing Follower Tweaks

Amazing Follower Tweaks

AFT is for those who don't like EFF or are having trouble with non-vanilla followers. It's easier to use than EFF but it comes with less options and compared to EFF's UI, isn't very neat. The real downside about this mod is that your follower capacity is stuck at five.

Relationship Dialogue Overhaul

Relationship Dialogue Overhaul

An updated version of DFD. It's like FCO except a lot less buggy. Adds over 5,000 lines of completely voiced dialogue for NPCs to use, with the main focus on friends, followers, and spouses. These lines are completely voiced and consist of existing lines that have been re-added in a new instance as well as new and completely unique dialogue I've created from splicing/editing parts of multiple dialogue lines together to form new ones that you will only hear from using this mod.

Convenient Horses

Convenient Horses

Adds a little quest where you learn how to ride and command your horse, adds leveling for your horse, talking and on horseback, follower horses.

Random NPCs

It truly is hard to create NPCs that actually sound good, look good, and are actually interesting and useful in the game. These are the most popular and biggest NPC mods out there. They're pretty good but be warned, you're not gonna get quality professional voice acting from these mods.  Even if this is a Bethesda game...

Interesting NPCs 

Adds tons of very detailed, well written, and well-rounded NPCs into the game, along with several quests to go with them. However, every single kid it adds is an absolute shithead. We added the warning emblem and lore-breaking emblem because this mod will test your mental stability and give you an extreme strong desire to murder children. That aside, a good fourth of the NPCs are really good. They have interesting personalities, unique scripts, and voices that fit and don't have mic static. The other three fourths of the mod is awful. Just listen to them, here we have 2 examples of some decent to good voices.
 
And here are some really bad ones.  Note that THIS quality will be present in most of the other NPCs.

Cutting Room Floor

This mod restores a few NPCs with some removed dialogue, small quests, and some buildings that were unused in Skyrim. The reason why they weren't added was probably because Bethesda ran out of time... or were lazy as usual.
 

DIVERSITY

It adds over one hundred new NPC:s with unique appearences to the Vanilla levelled lists for added racial diversity while staying lore friendly. Stats, levels, items, abilities, spawning, etc is entirely handled by Vanilla mechanisms, which ensures great compatibility with mods that for example tweak combat stats, or add and change clothing and weapons.

NPC Appearance Makeovers

It truly is hard to look at the ugly npcs in the game, well these mods hopefully correct those ugly npcs by making them look good, interesting and unique looking. These are the most popular and biggest NPC appearance makeovers out there. They're pretty good.
True Meeko SE

True Meeko SE

A lot of options to change the best doggo in gaming.

RS Children

RS Children

Makes the children in Skyrim not look like potatoes!

The Kids Are Alright SE

The Kids Are Alright SE

TKAA is different from RS Children in that it adds children of other races to the game, and even bandit kids, adding a lot more diversity to the game.

WICO - Windsong Immersive Chracter Overhaul

WICO - Windsong Immersive Chracter Overhaul

Way better than WSCO. Covers more, better textures, etc. Makes many male characters look amazing like my main man Tullius.

Total Character Makeover

Total Character Makeover

If you dislike the huge incompatibility of WICO, this mod changes the characters faces slightly, but still keeps that vanilla feel.

Bijin NPCs

Bijin NPCs

This mod will change the appearances of Vex, Sapphire, Irileth, Rikke, Hulda, Lisette, Carlotta, Karliah, Tonilia, Adrianne, Maven, Ingun, Gerdur and Idgrod the younger.

Bijin Wives

Bijin Wives

This mod will change the appearances of marriable characters(Camilla, Ysolda, Sylgja, Temba, Taarie, Muiri, Senna, Grelka and Morwen).

Bijin Warmaidens

Bijin Warmaidens

This Mod changes the appearances of Lydia, Jordis, Iona, Aela, Mjoll, Uthgerd, Ria, Frea, Rayya, Njada, Annekke, Adelaisa, Jenassa, Illia, Delphine, Ingjard, Aranea, Eola, Borgakh, Brelyna, Beleval and Ugor.

Seranaholic

Seranaholic

This Mod changes the appearance of Serana and her mother Valerica. P̶S̶S̶T̶,̶ ̶1̶.̶7̶ ̶i̶s̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶ ̶b̶e̶s̶t̶ ̶v̶e̶r̶s̶i̶o̶n̶.̶ Fuck no, 1.5 is the best.

Toccata as Elisif

Toccata as Elisif

Really, it's a follower but he provides an optional esp that uses his follower's appearance for Elisif. Which makes Elisif my Queenfu.

Pandorable's NPCs

Pandorable's NPCs

Another good replacer for many named females in the game, also has a Dawnguard optional download.

The Ordinary Women

The Ordinary Women

This mod changes the appearances of 60 NPCs, mostly forgotten ones and ones already done by Bijin. Put this in and then Load Bijin after if you want the best results in my opinion.

All Housecarl Replacer

All Housecarl Replacer

This replaces the Housecarls appearances but it changes the men housecarls with female counterparts. So honestly, you'd only use it to replace the male housecarls with women.

Player Characters

As I don't feel SE requires its own Wai-fu and Husbando-fu guides, I'll add the main character creation files, bodies, textures here. You can follow the Wai-fu and Husbando-fu guides for the most part, note that most, if not all, hair and textures work just fine on Special Edition, I recommend you update the .esp, check in-game if any of the meshes look weird, if you find a hairpack with weird meshes, update them as well.

Sliders

Enhanced Character Edit is a mod that adds 40 new sliders to edit your character with such iris size, dimple depth, nostril size, and many more!  It also adds new color sliders, zoom in/out feature for the camera, and a save and load feature.
This save and load feature is used to save facemorph information
so you can make new characters with an old face or even make your own presets for future characters.
This also changes face meshes for both males and females.
IN MY PERSONAL OPINION the better of the two, RaceMenu is a redesign of the original character generator.  It changes the menus to a neater and nicer looking SkyUI style.  Like SkyUI, it also adds a search bar. 
A new warpaint feature is also added which gives you more color options and allows you to have more than one piece of warpaint on your face. This mod also adds extra sliders but only for the body.  The sliders effect how big a part of the body is like head, arms, legs, and yes even butt size.  This does not  add new face sliders. HOWEVER with the newest update to Racemenu, you can now manually edit the faces vertices however you want with the new sculpt mode. You can also Bodyslide your character's body directly from in-game with the BodyMorph function.
Bonus points for RaceMenu is the fact that you can add all the extra sliders added by ECE to it (see *remember to insert link here*), while keeping a better face sculpt tool, overlays and all the other extra features.
OPTIONAL: Ethereal Elven Overhaul revamps all three of the playable elf races. It alters facial features, changes face morphs, and adds new facepaint to make elves look more appealing but still give them that "elven" look.  It also overhauls all vanilla elf NPCs to the new Ethereal style.
This mod is compatible with both CBBE and UNP body mods.  This is not compatible with ECE and CharGen Extension to a certain extent. When using any of these mods with EEO, elves will not be affected my the new morphs added by ECE but with the morphs from EEO.  Any extra menu options not added by EEO will appear, but they will do nothing or be incompatible.  This works with RaceMenu fine, since RaceMenu doesn't fiddle with facemorphs.
Note that the SE version linked is just a "patch" for the LE version of EEO, you still need to download the original LE version and apply the patch linked, read the mod page for proper instructions.

Hairs

saLa Hair

saLa Hair

This mod adds 30 hairs for women, 4 hairs for men.

Combined Hairstyles Collection

Combined Hairstyles Collection

Collection of all the Hairstyles i combined that adds a total of 39 Hairstyles.

Hallgarth's Additional Hair

Hallgarth's Additional Hair

Adds a lot of vanilla-style hair to the game that should fit in with what already exists. All hair uses vanilla textures, so any mod that changes vanilla hair textures will also affect these.

KS Hairdo

KS Hairdo

This hair pack offers A LOT of hairstyles for both male and female characters! Not much else to say.

Apachii Skyhair

Apachii Skyhair

A collection of hairs converted from The Sims, Oblivon and The Witcher 2. They come in all sorts of different styles for males and females. There are some good hairs but many of them look out of place or bad. If you do decide to use this mod, we also suggest getting this mod too.

Bodies

CBBE SE

CBBE SE

Pretty much the only Special Edition exclusive mod of importance right now, the new and improved CBBE has a bigger poly-count than UUNP, a new built-in "Special" body, with physics enabled tits, ass and vagene. Also new muscle sliders. No belly physics tho. ​BTW, for those that only use UUNP for Sevenbase, it also has built-in Sevenbase sliders, so you can recreate 7B Bombshell with it too. As an optional file, it also has HDT-SMP config, which adds collision for hands, feet and the new vagene

UUNP

UUNP

"But Rav, CBBE is shit and I'm a shitter who doesn't even want to take a look at the new CBBE!" ​ Well, lucky you UUNP works on SE, just download Bodyslide from the Legendary Edition Nexus page and install it as normal, build your body of choice and be happy. ​ ...Until you realize you'll need to update every .esp, texture and meshes for every outfit mod you download from Legendary Edition. Good thing its easy to do, just follow the tutorial linked on the Essential SE page.

Better Males

Better Males

Adds a permanently flaccid, or a permanent boner, reminder that if your erection lasts for longer than 4 hours, consult a doctor. Wait, there are no doctors in Skyrim? Uh... then go to the temple of Dibella or something.

SoS - Schlongs of Skyrim

SoS - Schlongs of Skyrim

Adds customizable dingdongs to the game, with an MCM menu to shape your 100% all-beef thermometer to your tastes. Want a big beefy muscular baby arm? Go for it. Want a slim, but very long giggle stick? Sure man, whatever floats your boat. Be sure to check the thread if you want to add physics and collision to your third leg.

Shape of Atlas (SAM) Light

Shape of Atlas (SAM) Light

The more customizable body available for men, with the optional downloads included on the mod page it adds BodyMorphs similar to those used on CBBE and UUNP to Racemenu. A lot of sliders to shape your dude however you want. Read the mod page and follow the instructions and you'll be fine.

XPMSSE

Pretty much the same thing as the Legendary Edition mod.
Necessary for pretty much anything, so installation is obligatory.
If you plan on using the physics files below, XPMSSE is obligatory.
Don't forget to install FNIS as well.

Physics

CBPC physics is a simple implementation of breast, butt and belly physics, it is however very light, and does not present any of the known bugs that HDT do, like the occasional stretching. Now with collisions!

HDT-SMP

HDT-SMP

*DISCONTINUED* Hydrogensayshdt back at it again, with a working version of HDT-SMP for Special Edition. Hope you know chinese tho, as for now its only available on 9damao, where you'll need to create an account and post a comment on the page before you can download the files. It has been discontinued by Hydro, but the source files have apparently been released, here's hoping someone picks up the work.

HDT High heels

HDT High heels

*DISCONTINUED* Also from hydrogensayshdt, which means its also in chinese. After you download it, the MCM menu may be a bunch of boxes, just donwload the translation files from the LE version on the mod and overwrite it.

FAQ

Q: Where the hell did the community followers go?
A: All Legendary Edition followers need to be converted to Special Edition manually, look for a tutorial on how to convert followers if you really want to do it.
Q: Why isn't this or that mod in the guide?
 
A: Some mods haven't been officially ported to Special Edition yet, if a mod you like isn't listed, try converting it yourself.
Q: Where the hell are all the texture mods?
A: Most textures from Legendary Edition work with SE, so go to the Wai-fu or Husbando-fu guides and check the textures there.
Note however that there aren't a lot of textures for the Special variant of CBBE. Some that I know out of the top of my head are the default CBBE, Bijin and Fair Skin. Textures without the vegene work just fine however. Note, I am talking about textures and not other mods listed on the guide, if you want any of the mods listed on the waifu guide, ie hairs, then you'll have to convert them yourself.
For any conflicting information from this page and the waifu guide, take this page as the proper info when it comes to SE information, as the Wai-fu guide was written for LE.
Q: Why aren't there any good monster overhauls already? It's been almost... 8 years!
 
A:W̶e̶'̶v̶e̶ ̶e̶x̶p̶l̶a̶i̶n̶e̶d̶ ̶t̶h̶i̶s̶ ̶b̶e̶f̶o̶r̶e̶.̶ ̶S̶k̶y̶r̶i̶m̶ ̶i̶s̶ ̶s̶t̶i̶l̶l̶ ̶y̶o̶u̶n̶g̶ ̶c̶o̶m̶p̶a̶r̶e̶d̶ ̶t̶o̶ ̶O̶b̶l̶i̶v̶i̶o̶n̶ ̶a̶n̶d̶ ̶M̶o̶r̶r̶o̶w̶i̶n̶d̶.̶ ̶ ̶B̶o̶t̶h̶ ̶o̶f̶ ̶t̶h̶o̶s̶e̶ ̶g̶a̶m̶e̶s̶ ̶h̶a̶d̶ ̶a̶ ̶l̶o̶t̶ ̶o̶f̶ ̶t̶i̶m̶e̶ ̶t̶o̶ ̶g̶r̶o̶w̶ ̶i̶n̶ ̶t̶e̶r̶m̶s̶ ̶o̶f̶ ̶m̶o̶d̶d̶i̶n̶g̶.̶ ̶M̶o̶s̶t̶ ̶o̶f̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶ ̶o̶v̶e̶r̶h̶a̶u̶l̶s̶ ̶y̶o̶u̶ ̶s̶e̶e̶ ̶f̶o̶r̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶m̶ ̶t̶o̶o̶k̶ ̶a̶l̶m̶o̶s̶t̶ ̶3̶-̶4̶ ̶y̶e̶a̶r̶s̶ ̶t̶o̶ ̶m̶a̶k̶e̶!̶ ̶Q̶u̶a̶l̶i̶t̶y̶ ̶t̶a̶k̶e̶s̶ ̶t̶i̶m̶e̶,̶ ̶s̶o̶ ̶p̶l̶e̶a̶s̶e̶ ̶b̶e̶ ̶p̶a̶t̶i̶e̶n̶t̶.̶ ̶W̶e̶'̶r̶e̶ ̶s̶u̶r̶e̶ ̶t̶h̶a̶t̶ ̶a̶ ̶o̶v̶e̶r̶h̶a̶u̶l̶ ̶m̶o̶d̶ ̶l̶i̶k̶e̶ ̶"̶F̶r̶a̶n̶c̶e̶s̶c̶o̶’̶s̶ ̶L̶e̶v̶e̶l̶e̶d̶ ̶C̶r̶e̶a̶t̶u̶r̶e̶s̶ ̶a̶n̶d̶ ̶I̶t̶e̶m̶s̶ ̶m̶o̶d̶"̶ ̶o̶r̶ ̶"̶M̶a̶r̶t̶'̶s̶ ̶M̶o̶n̶s̶t̶e̶r̶ ̶M̶o̶d̶"̶ ̶w̶i̶l̶l̶ ̶c̶o̶m̶e̶ ̶o̶u̶t̶ ̶s̶o̶o̶n̶!̶̶
Uhhh well....shit. Guess people don't care anymore? Everyone pretty much moved on to modding Fallout 4. Mihail still releases monsters almost daily now, but still hasn't made a compilation of his monsters.
 
Q: Will you be adding more to these guides?
 
A: Of course!  We'll try to keep all the guides up to date and will notify everyone if something has changed or has been added on. We also accept submissions if the mod is good enough!