Guidelines for Interior Showcases

Showcases must be made by all modders who want to work in exteriors, interiors, and questing. (That is: anyone who wants to do work directly in the Construction Set.) Everyone else does not need to and should not post a showcase thread; check the Modder’s Guide instead.
 

You should post exactly one showcase thread, in which you can display however many of the four types of showcase you would like.
If your showcase has not been officially reviewed or it seems to be taking a while, please bump the thread as a reminder. Sometimes we forget! Showcases should all be posted in the Showcase Forum.

 

INTERIOR SHOWCASE GUIDELINES

PLEASE READ THIS FIRST, BEFORE STARTING YOUR SHOWCASE

Acronyms:

TR – Tamriel Rebuilt

MW – Morrowind

TES – The Elder Scrolls

CS – Construction Set software

 

Before you start working on your showcase, please read through this guideline. It explains how to set-up MW to mod for TR, what is required for the interior showcase, and typical problem areas for newbies. It's a lot easier to read this than it is to go back and fix errors, sometimes, over and over again.

 

SHOWCASE PREREQUISITE

Create your showcase with a Mod-Free* version of Morrowind.

 

TR only uses vanilla MW content (Morrowind, Bloodmoon, and Tribunal) and our own TR_Data assets. Never select the master file TR_Mainland.esm when making showcases or any other work for TR. (Note that TR_Mainland.esp should be used when working on quests.) If you have a heavily modded game, and would like to submit a showcase, it is advisable to work from a fresh install of MW.

 

Mod's you can use:

*MCP (Morrowind code patch) (link is external) should be installed. This will give you access to the enlarged map system used by TR.

*Developers Resources (link is external)– Several vanilla MW items have poorly fitted collision meshes. These collision meshes extend beyond the extent of the item itself. The modder is therefore required to press “F” twice in order for the item to sit proper on top of something else. TR has fixed most of these errors and has provided you with new meshes to use for creating interiors.  Simply unzip the file into the “Morrowind/Data Files/Meshes” folder.

 

The latest TR_Data asset files (TR_Data.bsa and TR_Data.esm) can be found here.

 

INTERIOR SHOWCASE REQUIREMENTS

  1. Minimum size is 3x2x2 structural pieces (preferably a 2-story building).

  2. Use Furn_de_p furniture

  3. Position/rotate at least 10 items properly on top of the de_p furniture

  4. Sufficiently clutter the interior

  5. Include Northmarker

  6. Adjust the Interior Cell Settings: Lighting/Water Level/Illegal-to-Sleep-Here appropriately

  7. Clean your file

  8. All work must be original, do not copy from other interiors

 

If your showcase isn't reviewed within a few days, “Bump” your showcase, or send a Message any one of the Lead Developers.

 

SHOWCASE Size:

Interior showcases should be either a 2-story building or tomb (a minimum of 3x2x2 pieces in size), or a cave (see notes below) with significant changes in elevation. You must use a minimum of 12 cave pieces for your showcase. The style of the building does not matter, but since we are done, for the time being, with the Telvanni area of TR_Mainland, Telvanni interiors are no longer being accepted. Please do not make really large showcases. These will not be reviewed and you will be asked to make a new showcase.

 

Notes on caves:

Treat all cave surfaces as through they are solid rock. Typical misc/static/container objects should not bleed into the floor or wall of a cave. Exceptions would be beams, ramps, platforms, and large structural elements. These should bleed into the rocks (in particular the support beams). Be sure to notice that the in_cavern_ramp(s), ex_de_docks_(s), and ex_common_plat_(s) do not have level boards and items placed on them may need to be rotated slightly to sit properly. The exceptions to these cave rules are mud and snow caves. Neither of which is allowed for a showcase.

 

SHOWCASE Furniture (Furn_De_p Furniture):

Proper rotation of objects is vital for creating great interiors. That is why it is a requirement for all interior showcases to use furn_de_p furniture. If you look closely, you'll notice that objects such as de_p bookshelves and tables are not flat. Therefore, simply placing an object over a de_p surface and “F”ing it down is not acceptable. The item needs to be rotated in order to sit flat on the de_p furniture. We have a good PDF tutorial on object rotation here (link is external).

 

We do have flat versions of the de_p furniture in TR_Data. These start with the ID prefix TR_furn_de_p. You may NOT use them in your showcase! They're fine in regular TR interiors, just not showcases.

 

SHOWCASE Northmarker:

The Northmarker is a static that is used by the game to correctly orient the map. Please make sure you include one in your showcase. A good place to put the Northmarker is just outside the main entrance door to your interior.

 

SHOWCASE Interior Cell Settings: Lighting/Water Level/Illegal-to-Sleep-Here:

Your light settings should match a similar MW or TR interior's light settings. This is one time when copying is allowed. Light Settings can be accessed through the main menu in the CS. Select “World”, and then “Interior Cell...”. Scroll through the Cell Descriptions to find your cell. Now adjust the Ambient/Sunlight and Fog settings. Also, be sure to check the "Illegal To Sleep Here" box. If your showcase has water – this is where you would adjust the height of the water.

 

SHOWCASE Cleaning

While working in the CS, you will inevitably modify something that you had no intention of modifying. This may be static or misc objects or other cells. It is important that these minor changes do not appear in your showcase file. A file with such modifications is called “dirty”, and needs to be “cleaned” before submission to TR.

 

There are 2 acceptable ways to clean your file. You can use TES:Advanced Mod Editor (TESAME; see tutorial). The file can be found here (link is external). Or, you can clean it with TES:CS itself. See the mini-tutorials below on how to clean your file.

 

 

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

 

NO Cookie Cutting:

Cookie Cutting means copying an existing interior (such as a Bethesda one or any interior from TR) or any part of it, and using it as your own. This is NOT acceptable. This does not mean that you can not look at other interiors to see how items have been used or what items are acceptable within your interior or even get ideas for your showcase. If you see something you like, go to the “Object Window” in the CS, find the object(s) there and drag it into your showcase. Finally, note that most of Bethesda's interiors would not pass a TR showcase review, so don't copy their stuff.

 

New Items:

You are free to create new items in your showcase. Adding a new weapon with a new or old enchantment is fine. However, when you create the new item, be sure the ID name starts with “tr_”.

 

Gridsnap:

Gridsnap is an essential part of constructing interiors from scratch. We want to see if you can use gridsnap well, and if you can make hard-to-gridsnap pieces work properly using it. To setup Gridsnap in the CS, use the menu options “File”, “Preferences”. In here you can set the Grid Snap size, enable grid snapping, set the Angle Snap size. You can also turn Gridsnap on/off by pressing the 6th tool bar button, the one with 4 horizontal and 4 vertical lines. Typical values for grid-snapping are 64, 128, or 256.

 

Checking To See If An Item Is Floating Or Bleeding:

TR is pretty strict about items bleeding into one another or floating. We like our interiors to be as realistic as possible (this is not Oblivion). Most items should rest perfectly flat against each other (some exceptions are sacks and clothing). In order to check to see if items are sitting flat on each other, left mouse click the item sitting on top of the other item. You will see the selection box, composed of red, green, and blue lines. Where the two items meet, you should see 4 lines that make up a rectangle, usually these are the red and green lines. These 4 lines should appear as dotted or dashed or sometimes they will flicker on and off as you rotate the view. This usually indicates that the item is sitting perfectly flat on the other item. If the lines are solid then the select item is most likely floating. If the lines are missing, then the select item is most likely bleeding. If some of the lines are missing an others solid, then the select item needs to be rotated more.

 

 

COMMON MISTAKES

 

Unique/Quest Items

Unique or quest items should not be in your showcase. Most unique items have an ID name with a suffix of “_unique”, “ _uni”, or “_u”. If you are unsure the item is unique, check the “Count” column in the “Object Window”. If only 1 has been used, then the item is probably unique.

 

Sacks/Pillows/Cushions:

Sacks are made of a burlap-like material (probably Wickwheat), which is easily deformed. So bleed sacks into the objects that they rest on, to make them look more natural. This is also true for pillows. Cushions on the other-hand should not bleed into anything, nor anything into them (except sacks and pillows).

 

Clothing:

Clothing is very similar to sacks and pillows, as mentioned above. So you are allowed to bleed clothing into the object it sits upon. However, most clothing is not fully textured; usually the bottom can be seen through. You must make sure that this empty space is not visible from any angle.

 

Rugs:

Rugs are allowed to bleed into the floor (especially the really thick ones). However, items placed on a rug are not allowed to bleed into the rug. And items that are partially on a rug, must still have all legs resting on both the rug and the floor. It is highly advisable, for showcases, to have pieces of furniture either totally on or totally off a rug.

 

Pointy Bottom Bowls:

These bowls are a real headache for most people. We ask that you, first, rotate the bowl so that the selection box lies perfectly flat on the underlying surface. Then you can lower (aka bleed) the bowl into the underlying surface. How much to bleed is up to you, but it must be consistent throughout the interior. Just be sure to check inside the bowl and make sure the underlying surface does not show in the bottom of the bowl.

 

Mixing Styles:

In TES III: Morrowind there are two main styles; Dunmer style and Imperial style. These should not be mixed, as Bethesda did not mix them. To tell them apart, look at their ID name in the editor. Dunmer objects have 'de' in their name, like furn_de_p_chair. Imperial objects have 'com' in their name, like furn_com_r_table.

 

Furniture is also divided between rich and poor. These shouldn't be mixed either. You can tell which is rich and which is poor by looking at the color of the wood. The richer the furniture, the darker the wood. You can also read it in the name: _p_ = poor, _r_ = rich, _rm_ = middle class. This is not important for showcase since you must use the furn_de_p furniture.

 

Dependencies:

TR files will have a dependency upon TR_Data.esm. TR_Data.esm requires both Tribunal and Bloodmoon. If you have both expansions, please feel free to download and use TR_Data.esm. It greatly expands the amount of materials and objects available to use in the Construction Set.

Please do not have dependencies upon anything other than Morrowind, Tribunal, Bloodmoon, or TR_Data. Thanks!

 

Fitting the Exterior:

While magicka does exist in Tamriel, it's important to make sure that if your interior has an exterior shell, it fits! (NOTE: Interior tiles are bigger than exterior tiles; this discrepancy in size is considered OK.) If your exterior has a little square building, don't create a star-shaped interior for that building!

This is not that critical when making a showcase, since we do not require you to specify the exterior. However, when making buildings, try to incorporate the stairs into your 3x2 shape, and keep 2nd floors or basements above or below the ground floor, respectively.

 

 

MINI-TUTORIALS

 

1) How to skip all the warning messages when you load Data Files in TES:CS.

Locate and open the file Morrowind.ini. Scroll down to the [General] section, then add the line AllowYesToAll=1. It doesn't exist in the file by default, so you must add it on its own line. Save the Morrowind.ini file. Now, when you load the CS, simply click "Cancel" when the first warning/error message pops up, and it will skip through them all.

2) How to have multiple TES:CS Editors open at the same time.

Locate and open the file Morrowind.ini. Scroll down to the [General] section, then add the line AllowMultipleEditors=1. Save the file.

 

3) How to use TESAME to CLEAN your showcase

Open TESAME, then select your mod. Delete everything from it except the following: TES3, any object you made yourself (such as a note), and any cell you created/modified. To delete an item in TESAME, right click on the item. It should get a black background. Then you can press the “del” key or press the menu option “Items” then “delete”. And again don't forget to save (it doesn't ask if you want to save changes when you close the program), and I'd suggest using a new name – just in case you deleted something accidentally. See also TESAME tutorial.

 

4) How to use TES:CS to CLEAN your showcase

Start CS, and go to the menu option “File” then select “Data Files”, just like you were going to edit your file. Select the Master files that you used, and set your file as the “Active File” - just like normal. BUT, before you press “OK”, press the “Details” button. You should now see a long list of everything in your file. Now you can highlight the various items you'd like to delete from your file (don't select any REFR items under your CELL – this is the stuff you put in) and press the “delete” key on your keyboard. This will pop-up a “Mark As Ignored” window. Press “Yes” to ignore everything you've selected. Close the “File Details” window, and now click on “OK” in the “Data Files” window. This will load your file and ignore what you just selected to ignore. Now save your file, using a new name – just to be on the safe side - and your file is clean.