Skyrim modder transforms the Rift into a proper kingdom

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An image of a new town in Skyrim's the Rift.
Credit: Axis1211 on Nexus Mods.

The towns and cities of vanilla Skyrim can feel a little bit disappointing by modern standards, with massive metropolises like The Witcher 3’s Novigrad making Tamriel’s hamlets feel tiny in comparison, no matter how many wholesome moments and bouts of mischief they play host to.

Luckily, modders have done plenty to make the game feel new again, including giving it a Shadow of Mordor-esque nemesis system, lore-friendly Deathclaws, and a completely overhauled combat system.

Now, one has stepped up to provide a version of one of Skyrim’s most beloved provinces that’s truly fit for a king and those playing in 2022.

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Ever thought the picturesque land around Riften was a bit too sparsely populated?

The mod in question is called ‘Kingdom Of The Rift’ and is the work of prolific modder Axis1211, whose previous work has brought a ton of fresh locations to the game and also added both immersive ferries and a fire-breathing smurf follower to it.

Now, though, they’ve decided to pool a bunch of their location mods that affect locations throughout the Rift into one massive competition mod that’ll transform the hold into one that's worth Ulfric Stormcloak and General Tullius fighting over.

It does this by adding a bunch of thanedoms to the area, some of which serve as overhauls to established towns and villages like Ivarstead and Shor’s Stone, while others introduce entirely new settlements like the mountain fortress of Tormmarch and the border town of Dungate, which has a high population of Dark Elves due to its proximity to Morrowind.

A couple of these outposts feature or feed into existing quests, such as the thanedom of Treva's Watch, which is built up following the conclusion of the base game’s quest involving the fort of the same name.

Even if your adventuring days are done, the locations also contain a lot of new merchants and traders, so grabbing your coin purse and heading on a Rift-wide shopping trip is also an option.

If this has you sold on the mod, make sure to grab Ronniemagnum and Axis1211’s ‘Thanedom Assets’, plus the Unofficial Patch Project Team’s ‘Unofficial Skyrim Special Edition Patch’ first, as they’re both necessary to get the mod working as it should.

So, saddle up your steed, get ready to go on a tour of the new Rift, and make sure to follow us for more updates on The Elder Scrolls 6 and the wacky world of Skyrim modding.