Goal: scan mesh files (nif) to ensure compatibility with Skyrim Special Edition and update unsupported meshes.

This tutorial is aimed at the beginner using “Blades Hakama” by atomec as an example, and assumes familiarity working with folders and files. I do not cover HDT outfits here.


There are alternative tools available including automated batching.

What’s a mesh? It’s shape data that may be a piece of armor, a wall, a backpack, or a weapon. The files have the extension .nif.

Note: you do not need to scan or update FaceGen nif-files. Let Creation Kit generate new FaceGen data. See “Convert Old Skyrim Mods to SE” for more about FaceGen files.

I recieved a request from Patton for this tutorial so here it is. Follow along with the steps desribed below.

Update meshes for Skyrim SE from David Shrock on Vimeo.

In the video I’m loading into NifSkope nif-files from my Skyrim game-data folder and saving to my matching Skyrim Special Edition game-data folder and overwriting with the updated files. You may work from a clean folder somewhere. Keep a backup of your files in case something goes wrong.

1. find the meshes

Focus on custom armors and weapons where you’re likely to encounter unsupported meshes.

The hakama outfit meshes are loose files found under \Data\meshes\armor\atomec\ folder. Your mod may also contain meshes found inside a BSA-file which needs unpacking then repacking after you finish scanning and converting. See the previous article “Convert Black Sacrament Armor to SE” for instructions on unpacking a BSA.

Warning: If using HDT/BPP outfits or HDT hair, ensure support in both games or consider working from non-HDT first.

2 & 3. SSE Nif Optimizer (easy way)

Instead of the doing the following optional steps, much easier to run SSE Nif Optimizer. An external log file (located in same folder as your exe) will show what it did to the meshes. If you prefer more control, you may try scanning and editing the meshes yourself by following the next two steps.

2. run Nifscan (optional)

Copy Nifscan.exe to the highest level desired for your mod. The program scans the current folder and all sub-folders. If there are hundreds of nif-files then you may prefer to work at lower levels a few at time. In this example all of the files we need to scan are armor pieces so we can scan them at once. Copy Nifscan.exe to \Data\meshes\armor\atomec\ folder.

Open Command Prompt and change directory (cd ) to the same folder where Nifscan is located.

A quick way to get to the folder in Command Prompt is to copy the full path from explorer window into Command Prompt. Change drives if necessary then type cd space-bar and paste (Ctrl+V), followed by enter-key.

Enter the following to run Nifscan:

"Command Prompt"
nifscan |more

(The pipe character with “more” pauses the text. Use space-bar to continue scrolling the text.)

Nifscan notes any files that are not compatible with SE, such as “contains strips unsupported by SSE” after the filename. The primary incompatibility is the existence of skin-strips which need to be converted into triangles.

According to Nifscan, the files with strips are just the male and female hakamas (and hakamavars) in low-weight (\_0) and high-weight (\_1); 12 files in all.

3. use NifSkope 2 to turn strips into triangles (optional)

Load a mesh file containing strips into NifSkope and perform the following:

  • Select from menu, Spells -> Batch -> Make All Skin Partitions.
  • In “Number of Bones per Partiion” enter 60, and click OK.
  • NifSkope reports number of changes.
  • Select Spells -> Batch -> Update All Tangent Spaces.
  • Save the mesh. I saved to the matching folder under Skyrim Special Edition.


Repeat for each mesh (12 total for “Blades Hakama”).

4. test

Check it out in game to make sure the mesh is visible.


Questions or suggestions?

You may contact me using the form, on Nexusmods, on Twitter @dracotorre, or dracotorre gmail.

Skyrim, Skyrim Special Edition, Creation Kit, and The Elder Scrolls are trademarks of Bethesda Softworks LLC. All other trademarks belong to their respective owners.