NifSkope/Setting the Texture Search Path
The first thing you should do when you install NifSkope or start to use it with a new game is set the texture search path. This is the location on your computer that NifSkope looks to find the textures that are referenced inside the NIF file. Some games like Civilization IV store their textures in the same folder as the NIF file, so you don't have to set anything, but many games store their textures in a separate folder.
Setting the Texture Search Path
- From NifSkope's menu, select Render > Settings
- The Render Settings window will appear. The texture search paths are in the upper right. Press the Add Folder button.
- A new line will appear in the list of texture search paths which reads Choose A Folder. Make sure this line is highlighted while you complete the next step.
- You can either edit the path in the list manually by double-clicking it, or press the Folder button to browse for the location on your machine.
You can have as many search paths as you want, but for best results you should try to create as few as possible for each game. Taking Oblivion as an example, a typical NIF file will include texture paths such as "textures\weapons\IronDagger.dds" That means the folder that this path is relative to is the one above the "textures" folder. In the case of a normal Oblivion install, this would be the Data folder and that is what should be set for the search path.
The Correct Folder(s) to Select for Some Popular Games
Oblivion - Highlight only the Data folder (Make sure the Data/Textures folder is not highlighted)
Morrowind - Highlight both the Data and the Data/Textures folders
Civilization IV - You don't need to highlight any folders since the textures are stored in the same location as the NIF files that use them.
The order of the paths is significant, and you can shuffle them around by highlighting the path you want to move and pressing the Move Up button. The paths will be searched in the order they appear. Typically the shorter search path should be higher on the list. For example, "Morrowind/Data Files" should be above "Morrowind/Data Files/Textures".
You can also remove paths by pressing the Remove Folder button.
To enter relative paths, use ./ as a prefix for the folder.
The flower icon method of changing textures automatically tries to strip down the path of the texture you chose so it works with the game you're modding for. However, it does this by using the closest texture search path you have selected. Since it's possible to select several folders, a common mistake would be to select too many.
For instance, in Oblivion, if you select both the Data and Data/Textures folder, the closest path is Data/Textures. Therefore if you choose a texture using the flower icon, it will strip textures/ out of the path and cause the shape not to show up in the game. To fix this, either un-highlight Data/Textures, leaving Data highlighted, or manually add textures/ to the beginning of the path.
Some games may need to have the texture path adjusted manually every time, so always compare your new texture path with the old one to make sure the link is relative to the same folder.
NifSkope doesn't work with .bmp files. If your model appears white you may be using the wrong type of texture file. NifSkope doesn't read .bsa files, so be sure that the textures you are using are unpacked.