Skyrim mod adds Red Dead Redemption 2's sketchbook journal

Skyrim sketchbook mod
(Image credit: Bethesda)

One of the rather charming things about Red Dead Redemption 2's Arthur Morgan is his habit of sketching some of the places he's been in his journal. Rather than just keeping a dry questlog, Arthur writes down his own story and adds drawings of some of the places he's been and the things he's seen.

Now your character in Skyrim can do the same—at least when it comes to the sketches. The Adventurers Sketchbook mod for Skyrim Special Edition adds a nice new journal to the RPG. If you carry it with you, when you visit certain notable or picturesque locations in Skyrim, a sketch of that place will be added to your journal. Ah, memories.

There are 66 possible sketches in all, and when you open the journal for the first time you'll notice it isn't exactly blank. You can see just a shadow of the future sketches, giving you some hints about where you should visit to fill them in. Or you can just wander around and check your journal from time to time to see what new pictures have been drawn.

There are three versions of the mod to choose from. Your motivation may be purely about exploration and enjoyment of the scenery, but if you want a tangible bonus for filling up your book you can also acquire a skill called Lay of the Land, which will improve your movement speed or add a critical hit bonus. 

"Finding 30 locations will give you the first stage of The Lay of the Land, which gives you +5% critical hit chance and -5% chance to be critically hit by enemies, or alternatively bonus 5% movement speed, depending which main file you download," says creator wtfModMan. "Successive stages can be unlocked at 50, 60, and 66 completed sketches; each stage adds a bonus 5% boost."

I took the book for a spin and found a spot just outside Solitude to sketch, so that's a good place to start. The mod is easy to install: Just dump the files into your Skyrim Special Edition data folder and enable the .esp file when you launch the game. After a restart, you'll find the journal at the Guardian Stones near Riverwood, leaning against the Warrior Stone. And wouldn't you know it, that's also the site of the first sketch you can add to your new journal. Happy travels.

Christopher Livingston
Staff Writer

Chris started playing PC games in the 1980s, started writing about them in the early 2000s, and (finally) started getting paid to write about them in the late 2000s. Following a few years as a regular freelancer, PC Gamer hired him in 2014, probably so he'd stop emailing them asking for more work. Chris has a love-hate relationship with survival games and an unhealthy fascination with the inner lives of NPCs. He's also a fan of offbeat simulation games, mods, and ignoring storylines in RPGs so he can make up his own.