The Elder Scrolls

Mods to make Skyrim feel more vast (revisited 10 months later)

I posted the following about 10 months ago, but that post has since been archived and I'm wondering if there have been any mods published since then that help for this.

Here's the original post (quoted in full below): https://www.reddit.com/r/skyrimmods/comments/gi011c/mods_that_make_skyrim_feel_vast/

As I'm sure we're all aware, the game version of Skyrim is pretty tiny – according to this thread, it's roughly 4.32 miles across by 3.42 miles high, or a total of 14.8 square miles. There have been endless discussions about how big Skyrim is supposed to be lore-wise (Poland-sized? closer to about half of Europe? something else?), but it's definitely an awful lot bigger than the game has it.

I like to roleplay actually being in a vast land full of trackless wilderness, at least to the extent possible. Which mods / types of mods would help for that?

Here's what I do currently:

  1. Timescale mods: I speed up time when traveling in the wilderness, so I can at least be reminded in some way that it's supposed to be simulating a much larger land area. Currently I use {True Fast Travel Time} and {Dynamic Timescale} with the wilderness timescale set to 60 (meaning 1 minute real time = 1 hour game time). Unfortunately Dynamic Timesecale doesn't go higher than 60 – there was an Oldrim mod that let you set it to 120 IIRC, but I can't find it now. I also use {A Matter of Time} so I can actually see the clock moving faster. {Time Passes} doesn't really add to the vastness, but it complements the other mods well.
  2. More trees and bigger trees: I'm not 100% sure why this really helps for me, but it does. Maybe because it makes me feel like I'm dwarfed by a deep dense forest? Also maybe because it obscures some of the views, so I don't see Whiterun quite as quickly as I would coming from Riverwood. I guess in general if I can't see so far because something is blocking my view, then I can ignore the feeling that I really shouldn't be able to see nearly that far if Skyrim weren't condensed to such a small size. In any case, it works for me. I mainly use {Simply Bigger Trees} for this. I'd like to use other mods that add trees as well, but they tend to conflict with my other mods.
  3. Mods that improve mountains, because that makes them look grander. I use {Majestic Mountains} and {Obsidian Mountain Fogs}.
  4. LOD mods should in theory help for this, but I'm still unsure which is the best. {DynDOLOD} of course, but not sure about others.
  5. Bigger cities and towns: I don't mean more detailed cities, I mean bigger cities. The bigger the better – I want to feel like I'm in an actual city, not in a little town that happens to have some big fancy buildings. Right now I'm using {Holds: The City Overhaul}, which does an ok job but runs into some compatibility issues with other mods I'd like to use.
  6. More populous cities and towns: {Interesting NPCs} is probably the best for this that I know of for SE. There's also {Inconsequential NPCs}, but I've never tried to port that to SE.
  7. NOT more populous wilderness: In a vast world, you should not be meeting up with people every few minutes on wilderness roads. For me, mods like {Immersive Patrols} actually decrease immersion because they make it feel like Skyrim is a much more crowded world than it should be. For similar reasons I also don't like mods that add lots of enemy populations to forts and dungeons. Skyrim already feels like bandits outnumber normal citizens by about 2 to 1. I don't really want to add to that. I'd actually prefer to depopulate the wilderness a bit if possible, but the only mods I know of that do this are for animals – namely {True Hunter – less animals per square meter} and {No Predators on Roads}.
Read more:  Lorewise, was the mid-Second Era the end of a golden age for Tamriel?

Any other ideas for the above categories? What techniques do you use for increasing the feeling of being in a vast land?

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