My Old Person Race Mod Child as Playable Race

I have some experience with the Skyrim Creation Kit, and have made some small mods. I am really interested in creating new races, and have already made a mod that allows the player to create an old person, a child or a dremora. To accomplish this, I simply found their IDs in the editor and checked the "playable" box (and unchecked "child"). When I attempt this with some of the non-human races, such as wolf, horse or dragon, the game crashes as soon as I select that race in the character creation screen.

My question is this: Why does the game crash instantly, and is there a way to make animal/monster races playable fairly easily (I don't have much knowledge with scripting or creating meshes). Thanks.

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    \$\begingroup\$ My guess would be that animals and dragons use a different animation rig that can't support the animation sequence the character select screen wants to play. Or can't support the customization controls, or similar. \$\endgroup\$
    – user1430
    Commented Jan 25, 2016 at 19:06
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    \$\begingroup\$ Well, If this still a problem hopefully you've solved it. I think loading the asset in 2 separate places first of all confuses the system thinking there's a error when a model designated for a npc, animal is used as a player character. \$\endgroup\$
    – Arkadius
    Commented Mar 15, 2016 at 23:49
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Artsicle Modding is game dev :) \$\endgroup\$
    – Vaillancourt
    Commented Feb 13, 2017 at 12:15
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    \$\begingroup\$ Here's hoping that someone posts an answer. Being able to play as a slaughterfish or mammoth would certainly get me back in that game for at least a few hours. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Feb 10, 2018 at 21:13
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    \$\begingroup\$ Please see wiki.tesnexus.com/index.php/Creating_a_custom_race_for_Skyrim for a tutorial on creating custom races. Mods for playable animals do exist, e.g. on skyrimnexus. \$\endgroup\$
    – Exilyth
    Commented Sep 8, 2018 at 21:44

2 Answers 2


Probably reason in different classes that handled them.

For example, humans, elves, dremora are humanoid races that have method equipArmor, but animals don't have such method. As the engine don't handle this situation, it will be a fatal error.

It is very hard to find exact reason so probably you will not be able to make it work. Or maybe you can change some of the "animal types" to a humanoid race? For example use same id, but change his type to human.


I think the animations are the reason. We have been modding Skyrim for 7+ years now, and the only real limitation we have is the old workflow for rigging with legacy tools (which we made new tools for) and the hardcoded batch of animations "vanilla" in the game. All new workarounds have to add new animations via SKSE by replacing vanilla ones.

The hkx files (Havoc animation files) of each actor depend on their skeleton, which is a connection of bones and joints in the mesh. If the animations and the body skeleton do not match, you run into severe issues.

I would expect that the game loads all the player / rigged on human animations, and that you try to force an animal mesh as "player body", where you run into these conflicts.

Race menu mods where new races become controllable usually just paste this new "body" over the old actor's player/humanoid animations as far as I know.

HOWEVER, it appears to me that this mod made it possible and found your fix: https://www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/87316

Best of success!


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