This mod by Paul 'Simyaz' Thomson is a story-driven Companion-MOD featuring an Argonian Battlemage by the name of Ruined-Tail. This features a complex story with many paths that allow you to shape the story as it unfolds.
RUINED-TAIL'S TALE 3.01 - A Complete Rebuild
By Paul 'Simyaz' Thomson
1 - MOD DESCRIPTION
1.1 - Ruined-Tail's Tale - In Brief
1.2 - Ruined-Tail's Tale - Design Focus
2 - UPDATE DETAILS
3 - INSTALLATION
4 - TROUBLESHOOTING
5 - CREDITS
6 - ADDITIONAL
1 - MOD DESCRIPTION
1.1 - RUINED-TAIL'S TALE - IN BRIEF
Ruined-Tail's Tale is a story-driven Companion-MOD featuring an Argonian Battlemage by the name of Ruined-Tail (or Ruin, for short). Throughout the course of your time together you will learn more about what drives Ruin and what haunts him, and through numerous multi-path conversations, complex scripted sequences, and challenging strategy-orientated encounters, you will play an integral part in shaping Ruined-Tail's Tale to its ultimate conclusion.
Ruined-Tail's Tale 3.0 has the following features:
*Companion "Ruined-Tail" (Ruin) - An Argonian Battlemage who will follow the you, and under your direction can be ordered to: Follow, Wait (at current location, or return to previously designated "Home" point), Ride Horses, Mark and Recall locations, be Summoned, and Adjust tactics (Aggressiveness, Combat styles, Following distance, etc.)
*Complex, multi-path storyline focusing on Ruined-Tail (and his relationship with the player), played out through immersive, detailed scripted sequences and events, and several thousand lines of dialogue.
*Companion development in the style of Westly Weimer's SolaMOD (for BG2) in which every conversation and your responses shapes Ruin's development, as well as his relationship with the player.
1.2 - RUINED-TAIL'S TALE - DESIGN FOCUS
As one of the earliest Companion MODs released for Oblivion, and certainly the first with any sort of developed story (not to mention one of the first COMPLEX quest MODs released), it was inevitable that Ruined-Tail's Tale's age would begin to show after all this time. Originally built in about 6 days at the request of a friend, very little effort went into developing the non-dialogue-related elements that made up the early version of the MOD. As new story elements were added to the MOD, it became too complex to simply "go back and fix what was broken", short of completely rebuilding the MOD from scratch. And so, with my other modding endeavours finished (Specifically: Tears of the Fiend and Malevolent) it was time to go back and make Ruined-Tail's Tale -my most popular MOD to date- the sort of MOD it deserved to be.
Originally designed to follow the style of Westly Weimer's SolaMOD for Baldur's Gate 2 (indeed, many of the original dialogues were simply rewritten versions of Solaufein's dialogue's from Westly Weimer's MOD), the overall "story-structure" of the first 1/2 of the MOD (containing some 15 conversations) was lacking, due to no obvious developing plot. Upon deciding to completely remake the MOD, I also opted to rewrite most of the dialogue (though many of the themes remain the same) in order to provide a better developing plot and Companion, as well as make the story more "intense" and "involving" for the player. No longer would the player simply be answering moral and philosophical questions to shape Ruin's development as an individual persona, now all of those questions would be intrinsically linked to the overall plot arch.
The idea of rewriting the plot and dialogue elements also provided an opportunity to make the relative "side-characters" (such as the ShadowSeeker Party) more involved in the entirety of the story. And so, rather than simply include new elements to facilitate these "more involved" side-characters, I opted to amalgamate the various roles of the characters. In other words: I decreased the overall number of side-characters, but increased each of their roles to encompass aspects of the others.
Finally, -aside from completely redesigning the locations and encounters- I also decided to give the core story a slightly "darker" and more "believable" tone. An important element of this was to remove the "Missing-Tooth's Tale" conclusion (found in Ruined-Tail's Tale 2.0 and above), but to take the elements from that defunct section of the MOD and include them elsewhere. Ultimately completing the design aspects of the Ruined-Tail's Tale rebuild.
For those of you who have played previous incarnations of Ruined-Tail's Tale, you will note the following changes:
Added: Several new and important (not to mention complex) scripted sequences.
Changed: Character involvement has been changed in order to better develop side-characters. The overall character list has been decreased, but individual roles have been increased, with several roles being amalgamated into individual roles. Some aspects of the story have been changed to make it slightly "darker", as well as to adhere closer to TES Lore, and overall consistency.
Removed: All of "Missing-Tooth's Tale" (Part IV) has been removed.
Added: Several new locations (in particular, the Tavern of the Battered Dragon and the ShadowSeeker Party Headquarters), and 1 new worldspace have been included. Ruined-Tail's "Companion" functions have been expanded to include: Battle tactics, Following distance, Mark and tavel to "Home" location, and Riding horses.
Changed: The designs for existing locations have been completely recreated from scratch, with not a single recognisable element remaining. Several battles have been redesigned to be "fairer" (no more elitist Shadowscale Stronghold battle), more "complex", and more "unique".
ADDED: 1/3rd increase on overall number of lines of dialogue in Ruined-Tail's Tale (Part I - Part III). 1/3rd increase in the number of dialogue CHOICES in Ruined-Tail's Tale (Part 1 - Part III)
CHANGED: Large portions of the existing dialogue (in particular those pertaining to the "Ruin Companion Dialogue) has been changed/rewritten for the purpose of consistency throughout the dialogue.
REMOVED: The Dialogue pertaining to the "Missing-Tooth's Tale" (Part IV) section of Ruined-Tail's Tale. Also removed "Terminal Dialogue" (except for a few VERY OBVIOUS situations), which was dialogue in previous versions that automatically resulted in Ruin refusing to follow you due to a clash of personalities. In the new version you can recover Ruin with an apology if such dialogue eventuates.
2 - UPDATE DETAILS
NOTE: This update has been delayed for testing, and because of the pending release of additional voice acting. Due to the ongoing delay, and having received final confirmation that the issues that this MOD addresses have been thoroughly tested, I have opted to release it now to facilitate a more enjoyable RTT experience.
*Fixes a script-related bug that occurs occasionally during the sequence in Anvil.
*Fixes an Oblivion Engine bug that occurs for 1 in 5 players at the end of the MOD.
3 - INSTALLATION
NOTE: You MUST be using Oblivion version 1.1 or above for this MOD to work. If you are using 1.0 you WILL receive strange and crippling bugs that prevent quest progression!
NOTE: PREVIOUS VERSIONS OF RUINED-TAIL's TALE (using Ruin.esp) MUST BE DELETED BEFORE INSTALLING RUINED-TAIL'S TALE 3.0 (Which uses RTT.esp)!
Unzip RTT.7z into your Oblivion directory, being sure to maintain the "folder/directory integrity" during the unzip process. If for some reason you are unable to complete this, the relative files should be placed as follows:
RTT.esp file - OblivionData
Sound files (prefixed with RTT_Soundnumber) - OblivionDataSoundFX
Voice files - OblivionDataSoundVoiceRTT.esp
Mesh files - OblivionDataMeshes
Texture files - OblivionDataTextures
Once the files are correctly installed, start up Oblivion, be sure to select "RTT.esp" within the "data files" section of the Oblivion splash screen. If you are using a previous version of Ruined-Tail's Tale, BE SURE TO UNTICK "RUIN.ESP" before starting the game.
Load up a saved game, or start a new game, and make your way to the Imperial City Arena. Ruin can be found at a statue nearby the entrance to the Arena within the Arena district, and will attempt to start a conversation with you upon seeing you.
4 - TROUBLESHOOTING
Refer to "The Ruined-Tail's Tale Guide" included in the RTT.7z for troubleshooting for both technical difficulties and a complete Ruined-Tail's Tale quest walkthrough.
5 - CREDITS
Ruined-Tail's Tale 3.0 Development Team:
Paul 'Simyaz' Thomson - Project Leader/Creator, Writer (Dialogue, Quest, In-Game Books, References, Source Material), Lead Scripter/Programmer, Mapper/Level Designer, Sound Editing.
Arilita - Lead 2D Artist, Lead 3D Artist, Loremaster, Playtester.
Wizard Of Thay - Playtester.
Persian Paladin - Playtester.
Zlob - Playtester.
Poems from the following authors were used in Ruined-Tails Tale:
Melinda Sue Pacho
Westley Weimer (taken from SolaMOD for BG2:SoA)
Modified excerpts of audio files from the follow sources were used in Ruined-Tail�s Tale:
Call of Cthulhu: Dark Corners of the Earth
Thrown Me Away � Korn (See you on the Other Side)
The information for the in-game book "The Gods of Tamriel" was taken primarily from the Morrowind book "Varieties of Faith in the Empire" found at The Imperial Library website ( Imperial-library.info ), with most of the content simply paraphrased from the information contained on that site. However, if the information is incorrect, more than likely it's my fault for interpreting it wrong.
6 - ADDITIONAL
MAKE USE OF THE RUINED-TAIL'S TALE GUIDE!
The Guide is highly complex and will provide an answer for any quest or technical question that you might have.
EDITING, USING AND DISTRIBUTING:
I really don't care where or how you distribute Ruined-Tail's Tale, provided that you don't change the attached Malevolent ReadMe and the Malevolent Guide, and you don't take undue credit for the MOD's creation and development. Feel free to use my script and NPCs all you want, but PLEASE don't plagiarise my story/dialogue. Obviously I can't do anything to stop you, but seriously, there can be no justifiable reason to steal my writing. Basically, as long as you aren't going to publish any changes to this MOD (By posting it online or distributing it in any way) I don't care what changes you make.
If you want to translate any of my MODs into another language with the intent on using it for something other than personal use (distributing) be sure to contact me at Simyaz@Bigpond.com first for permission, and the relative conditions associated with the translation.
RUINED-TAIL'S TALE is Copyright © 2008 Paul 'Simyaz' Thomson
OTHER MODS BY SIMYAZ:
Tears of the Fiend (The Legacy, The Butcher of Armindale, Tears of the Fiend) - Tesnexus.com
Malevolent - Tesnexus.com