ByMarlon McDonald, writer at
Umm... are you going to drink that Skooma?
Marlon McDonald

How many mods do you have running when playing PC The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim? I think I have roughly a little over 100 essential ones grinding together, making the game so utterly unique it's ridiculous.

But despite the tinkering and expansion of little or monumental things here and there, I can't help but feel like some things are still lacking. Like cities for example. Sometimes wandering through settlements and cities can feel like empty experiences.

But praise Julianos, a mod has been created that totally overhauls three of Skyrim's more lackluster cityscapesm, making them larger by adding more buildings, inhabitants and even amending the lore of each locale. And also gives already packed cities a little bit of a boost of life.

This is Galandil's "Holds The City Overhaul."

Four years in the making, Creator Galandil dedicated two hours a day from 2012 to create this stunning mod. He rebuilt Falkreath, Winterhold and Dawnstar from the ground up, and even added new settlements to the game for good measure, like Amber Guard and Black Moor, as highlighted in the video below:

Why? Well ,on the mod's Nexus Mods page, Galandil explained why he decided to imbue Skyrim with his meticulous touch:

I started working on this project late November 2012 and have devoted averagely two hours a day to the creation kit. One of the reasons I felt this project was necessary was the announcement of various modding projects adding new content to the game.

The problem, for me was how expansive their cities looked compared to the cities in Skyrim. Coming into Skyrim from Oblivion I was expecting there to be a 'Better Cities' mod available early on, but there wasn't and I missed the features the Oblivion City Overhaul brought to the game.

The aim of all of this is to create a more memorable and diverse experience, making the cities actually feel like cities hopefully without ruining the natural and realistic design of the vanilla game.

That's pretty fair enough, right? But all of these incredible changes must come at a price. Thankfully not an actual price, but a size. The mod is 4 GB in size, which is huge, but you'd expect nothing less from a creation this damn expansive.

And also, with any mod of this kind, Galandril warns that you'll have to start a new game, just in case "Holds" goes crazy when trying to put its new elements into an already existing save. Which also makes sense.

Here's another video that details the changes in more detail:

If you like the sound of "Holds," get over here to inject some extra life into the cities of Skyrim. And well done, Galandil! This is some serious work.

Do you want to overhaul your 'Skyrim' cities?

(Source: Eurogamer, Nexus Mods)


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