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Arthmoor

Skyrim SE/Fallout 4 mods on PS4 are back - Sort of.

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In case you're living under a rock:

 

https://bethesda.net/#en/events/game/mods-and-4k-coming-to-ps4-for-skyrim-and-fallout4/2016/10/04/221

 

PS4 mods are back. Before you get your hopes up though, one important statement in there needs to be highlighted:

You will not be able to upload external assets with your PlayStation 4 mods, but you will be able to use any assets that come with the game, as most mods do.

 

What does this mean? It means PS4 mods that are not fully functional with just a single ESP file are out. "External assets" for Skyrim and Fallout 4 are stored in a separate archive file. This means no custom meshes, textures, music, audio, voiced dialogue, or scripts. It's the scripts that are going to place the biggest restriction on what can be done.

 

What it means in practice is basically that something like USLEEP/UFO4P cannot be offered for PS4 users because they both rely on external assets to be functional. Not much point in a patch if it can't even be allowed to edit and compile updated/new scripts.

 

That said, ESP-only mods are better than nothing at all and perhaps down the road Bethesda will be able to convince Sony to loose their sphincters a bit more.

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It is a bit unclear the way they've worded things, but you definitely can't run the CK on a PS4. That's only available through the Bethesda.net launcher, which is a PC-only system.

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The question is - do the consider scripts to be assets? Problem with Sony was all about sounds bwcause they always used proprietary formats since Walkwan players. Maybe textures too similar to initial troubles with xbox textures packaging and that basically makes meshes obsolete as well. But pure scripts? It is strange. I actually wouldn't be suprised that when packaging a mod for PS4 scripts will be embedded into a plugin like in Oblivion. Technically there is no difference where to load a compiled script from - a binary blob from a file or a binary blob from a binary plugin.

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I wouldn't count on that. Writing scripts into the esp just for the PS4 would be crazy since PC and XBox don't require it and it would require major changes to the engine structure that we'd be unable to test. Something like that they'd almost have to embed scripts into the esp for everyone. I have mixed feelings on that at this point.

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I'm surprised Beth is still trying, the Playstation has a history of having botched Elder scroll games after all. I'll be a good girl and keep my bias for PC gaming from driving this topic over a cliff. I certainly want to be bad and say something though.  :P

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I wouldn't count on that. Writing scripts into the esp just for the PS4 would be crazy since PC and XBox don't require it and it would require major changes to the engine structure that we'd be unable to test. Something like that they'd almost have to embed scripts into the esp for everyone. I have mixed feelings on that at this point.

Then I don't understand Bethesda. Emulating a scripts file folder via records would be dead easy - one subrecord holds the file name, other is data. Game will load all such records from all active mods using the common rule of one, and search for scripts there instead of a real folder if the game is on PS4. From a programming point of view this is an easiest task that could be implemented in less than a day. If they couldn't make it, then the problem with scripts is not only them being external "assets", but rather Sony prohibiting any form of programmed execution done by users which bypasses consoles QA.

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Thanks for the link to twitter Arthmoor, was about to post on "the dreaded forums" asking for some clarifications from the devs. Pete Hines twitter seems to confirm only esp's are possible to upload via the CK. It's a start at least, considering how massive the PS4-userbase is ignoring them entirely would be a major defeat. Lukewarm news at this stage at least. Also the 900MB storage limit shouldn't a problem anymore on PS4. In one move Bethesda solves two issues, ingenious! :P

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Then I don't understand Bethesda. Emulating a scripts file folder via records would be dead easy - one subrecord holds the file name, other is data. Game will load all such records from all active mods using the common rule of one, and search for scripts there instead of a real folder if the game is on PS4. From a programming point of view this is an easiest task that could be implemented in less than a day. If they couldn't make it, then the problem with scripts is not only them being external "assets", but rather Sony prohibiting any form of programmed execution done by users which bypasses consoles QA.

I wouldn't be surprised if that was the case, given how strict Sony has been in the past about "foreign" code execution on their platform. I'm willing to bet that that's what got Bethesda's attempt to bring mods onto the PS4 into trouble, they couldn't guarantee that the user-created content couldn't leave the game's "lock box" (and then execute something wicked on the PS4).

 

 

... Also the 900MB storage limit shouldn't a problem anymore on PS4. In one move Bethesda solves two issues, ingenious! :P

I feel like I should be congratulating them on that insight :P

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You will not be able to upload external assets with your PlayStation 4 mods, but you will be able to use any assets that come with the game, as most mods do.

 

"As most mods do"... What metric are they using, exactly?

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I wouldn't be surprised if that was the case, given how strict Sony has been in the past about "foreign" code execution on their platform. I'm willing to bet that that's what got Bethesda's attempt to bring mods onto the PS4 into trouble, they couldn't guarantee that the user-created content couldn't leave the game's "lock box" (and then execute something wicked on the PS4).

 

 

I feel like I should be congratulating them on that insight :P

I get the feeling Sony are superstrict with their platform. Consoles economic strategy is to lock consumers into a monopolized ecosystem. Sony does this extremely successful. That is kind of what Steam is trying to do with the PC market and while without a doubt successful they are no way near PS.

If Sony feels a iota threatened or unsure of the mods on their platform I find it hard to believe they would allow it. That's why I find myself a bit confused about how during the PS4 beta no restrictions existed (besides audio not working. Wouldn't Sony have the same restrictions then as now?

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"As most mods do"... What metric are they using, exactly?

Hey, most mods do use assets that came with the game... they just don't usually exclusively use assets that came with the game. :P

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