This mod is dedicated to the comment authors at the Nexus VUI+ page.
You’ve been a great source of positivity. Thank you.
Vanilla UI Plus (VUI+) is a Fallout 3 & New Vegas mod that greatly improves the user interface without compromising the original style. It’s actively supported and it’s been and it's been recommended by GOG.
Why vanilla ? Because it matches the game’s fashion & technology style by looking like old PLATO programs, improving my sense of “being there”. The standard fonts are also very easy to read by everyone including controller users. For that reason I have focused on fixing glitches and adding some low-profile features, trying to hide those extra edits as much as possible.
Before/after screenshots should provide a summary of some major changes, especially if you open them in their original size. You can also check out the comments in the source but the best way to understand VUI+ is to give it a try. You may find that many changes are hardly noticeable but together they contribute to an improvement of looks and usability which will make your game more enjoyable.
This is a guide to help players easily install UI mods of their choice. While these are the most benign types of mods and they often don’t even affect game save data, they can cause serious installation headaches. Having developed such a mod for a whole year, and actively supporting users during this time, I feel that I know all the reasons for those problems and I can outline a rock-solid set of instructions that will work well for everyone with minimal effort.
This guide doesn’t apply specifically to my VUI+ mod. It applies to all UI mods, be it Darnified, WMM, PipWare, Revelation, oHUD etc. All you need to do is to read the following steps and follow them to the letter. If you wish to understand how things really work, you can read the spoilers but that’s entirely optional.
So let’s begin:
You need a mod manager because UI mods must use loose xml files instead of a BSA package. Manually installing such files is difficult because you can’t tell which mod an overwritten file belongs to. Manually uninstalling such files is even more difficult because you need to keep copies of the overwritten files. At best it’s a waste of time, at worst it’s a disaster.
I prefer FOMM because it’s small and powerful and its own Fomod specification is the defacto standard making it very easy to support. NMM and MO are OK too but if you are using a mod manager with a virtual file system, make sure you know how to investigate overwrites.
A New Vegas (or Fallout 3) game should never be played without NVAC, however the recommendation in the case of UI mods isn’t for the stability advantages NVAC offers but rather for convenience: sometimes uninstalling such a mod would cause the game to crash and NVAC will prevent that. This is explained in the last step of this article.
UIO is required to make UI mods work together as you’ll find in the next steps. It also doesn’t need a specific installation order, despite what outdated guides suggest.
Yes. Outdated modding guides tell you to overwrite DUI by the MCM, but you should do the reverse and overwrite the MCM by DUI. To understand the reasoning behind this you’ll need to separate xml-based UI mods in 2 categories:
“UI extensions” being UI mods that comprise of esp or esm plugins and one or more original UI xml files (extracted from the official game archives) with a single added line at their bottom. This line injects new code into the menu when the game is running. Such UI mods are generally not interested in changing the UI but rather add some new functionality to it. The term “UI extensions” is used by UIO.
“Base UI mods” being UI mods that contain modified UI xml files which have been developed to apply style or layout changes. Examples include DUI, VUI+ and Revelation but also smaller mods such as Cowgirl. Such mods are not mentioned in UIO’s “currently supported” list, even though UIO will indirectly support them. The term “base mod” was originally coined by Ladez at the VUI+ comment thread.
UIO is aware of the additional xml code of UI extensions either through its own support.txt file or through files provided by the extensions themselves; when you start the game, it detects their presence and merges their code into existing files of base UI mods. When the game is properly closed, it restores the original base UI files.
Let’s say for example that you are using VUI+ and WMM. Both files contain a file called inventory_menu. VUI+, as a base UI mod, is making several changes into its code, while WMM only contains a single additional line to the bottom of the code.
According to the steps, you have overwritten the extension with the base mod, so WMM’s inventory_menu is lost. However, WMM’s other files still exist and therefore UIO can detect it. When your run the game, it injects WMM’s single line into inventory_menu and as a result you now have WMM’s functionality in your VUI+ inventory_menu.
But what would happen if you ignored the steps and installed WMM after VUI+ using a manual installation ? UIO would not restore the vast number of lost edits from VUI+ and thus you would have an inventory menu that would look unmodified vanilla.
So, why does the Internet tell you that UI extensions must be installed after UI overhauls such as DUI ? That’s because many UI extensions were written using advanced FOMM installation scripts that would prevent them from overwriting existing files, but rather inject their code into them. For example, if you use FOMM to install WMM after VUI+, you’ll find that both mods work fine.
However, I can’t force users to use FOMM and some mod managers are not really 100% FOMM compatible even though they claim to be. That means the WMM installation script could fail and that would result to the problematic scenario of a manual installation.
Even so, even with a imperfect mod manager, it’s so much easier to uninstall a UI mod instead of uninstalling the entire game and starting from scratch like some users do... There’s really no excuse in not using a mod manager with Oblivion, Fallout 3 or New Vegas, and that’s from a guy who considers himself a manual installation champion for Skyrim!
For example, if you want to use both Revelation and Vanilla UI Plus, you’ll need a manual patch that will merge or selectively choose features of either mod.
DUI requires some edits to Fallout.ini files that UIO is supposed to do automatically. This process sometimes fails especially if their folder is restricted for security reasons. Again you should ignore outdated guides, including Darnified’s installation instructions, that suggest you edit those ini files yourself. Simply install DarNified Font Dummies and you’re ready to play.
UIO retains copies of the original files (named .uio) that it restores when you close the game normally. It cannot restore those files however when you force close through Alt-F4 or a crash because UIO itself would be force closed as well. That means your current UI xml files will not work properly if one of the injected mods is removed from your load order.
The solution is simple: Just run the game once more and close it normally. This will allow UIO to properly restore the original files and all your mod manager to deal with them.
This is an argument for mod authors to prefer installer declarations or scripts instead of UIO.
If other mods had used special installation instructions to support the mod you’ve just deleted, some files now point to a non-existing mod. This will cause an crash, usually right after you start the game. Such crashes are often prevented by NVAC, so you may never experience them, but if you do the solution is to reinstall your UI mods which will now copy the correct files for your game.
This is a strong argument for mod authors to prefer UIO over installer declarations or scripts.
No articles were found matching the criteria specified. We suggest you try the article list with no filter applied, to browse all available. Join now to share your own content, we welcome creators and consumers alike and look forward to your comments.
This is the Fallout 3 version. Please follow the installation instructions to the letter.
This is the New Vegas version. Please follow the installation instructions to the letter.
No files were found matching the criteria specified. We suggest you try the file list with no filter applied, to browse all available. Join now to share your own content, we welcome creators and consumers alike and look forward to your comments.