Any PC fan will tell you that mods can extend, improve or revive a game's prospects, and the ModDB repository is the home for just about every decent mod under the sun.
As is the case every year, the site nominates its top 100 mods and then opens the doors for fans to vote. But more importantly, it's a chance to catch up with some of the best mods from the last 12 months.
If you haven't voted yet, you've still got 9 days left to jump on board. There are some nice prizes for doing so -- Steam keys for older games with cracking mods like S.T.A.L.K.E.R, essentially -- but mostly it's a way to quickly educate yourself about all of the great fan-creations out there.
There are two categories: mods that have been released and mods that are still in development. Here's the ones that caught my eye.
Time to toot that horn
ETS2MP was actually released last year, and considering the cult following the game has it's not much of a surprise that it won the reader vote then. I can't quite fathom why it's still in the list, but if the admins have deemed it worthy then I wouldn't have many qualms voting for it because it's a superb inclusion to the game.
The mod has gotten a vast amount of improvements and upgrades over the last 12 months, however, and it's strongly supported with thousands of concurrent players and hundreds of thousands of downloads. It's actually hard to imagine Euro Truck Simulator 2 without the MP mod as well, although be advised there is always the possibility of running into suicidal truckers online.
The vast amount of work that has gone into Project Brazil is staggering
It's a shame that this Fallout: New Vegas mod didn't meet its original timetable by beating Fallout 4 to launch, and the subsequent delay to March next year is even more frustrating. But it's understandable considering the vast amount of content within, and the delay may actually help it in the long run by giving players enough breathing space between Fallout 4 and Obsidian's modded wasteland.
Some of the creators took sabbaticals from work to devote time to the mod, and it grew to such a gargantuan project that 44 separate voice actors ended up contributing lines to the dialogue. It's a mammoth, mammoth effort that deserves not to be forgotten, and any Fallout fan should at least keep an eye on how it develops.
It's a fully fledged mod for Freelancer called Crossfire, which is more or less the unofficial sequel to the game that continues Edison Trent's story following the gargantuan battle at the conclusion of Freelancer.
Crossfire 2.0 was pushed out only a few months ago, and the developers have been working on online-focused content for the mod since October. Apart from more Freelancer, this is why ever Star Citizen, Elite: Dangerous and Freelancer fan should download this mod right now:
- Highly improved graphics
- Hundreds of stunning effects
- Atmospherical music tracks
- Highly improved AI
- Dynamic lights
- Destructible universe
- Dynamic economy and dynamic universe
- Thousands of side stories and rumours
- Quest based storyline
- 147 high detailed systems
- More than 290 new ships
- More than 50 custom stations
- More than 160 new stations/planets
- Countless new equipment and commodities
- 13 new factions including 8 new races
- Three new sectors
- New shaders
- Planetary worlds
- Higher render details
- DLC (Downloadable Content)
- Perfect gameplay
The prospect of downloadable content for a mod seems like a weird thing to advertise, but I couldn't actually see anywhere on the mod page where they were soliciting money. I'd consider donating them a few dollars at least though just for planetary worlds, more story and tougher battles. Perfect reason to go back to Freelancer, if you ask me.
The background is a bit of a giveaway, but obviously this is for Portal 2 and not the original
Another mod that was actually released this year is Portal Stories: Mel, which takes Portal 2 and adds another 22 themed maps with a brand new story. According to the creators, there's roughly 6 to 10 hours of content in the game, as well as an hour-long fan-made soundtrack and 350 separately voiced lines.
But perhaps the best part of it all -- and something a lot of people will genuinely be thrilled by -- is the fact that every puzzle in the game is based on logic, rather than execution, meaning that reactions are no longer a factor when it comes to completing puzzles.
You can download Portal Stories: Mel directly through Steam, provided you own Portal 2. If you do, however, at least do the developers a favour and vote for them on ModDB as well. They deserve it.
Grand strategy mixed with grand bastardry
I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the Game of Thrones mod for Crusader Kings 2, especially considering the scope was so immense that we couldn't help but report on it last month. The full version can be found here. If you're a fan of CK2, you need this mod. Pure and simple.
So that's five mods that caught my eye out of the top 100. What about yourselves? And what do you think of the nominated mods that are still in development?