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Info Needed Fallout Crash Guide

Catallaxis

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Actually all evidence indicates the author of that mod is either outright lying or just doesn't know what they're doing. Tests to see if the mod is breaking precombines on xbox shows that it does (you can see it by changes in material swaps). The mod author has refused to explain how they're doing it and has been unable to explain the evidence indicating broken precombines to people that are experts in the precombine system.
Well, thanks for the info. I'm not using Scrap That Commonwealth because I don't really trust it, especially since it's tagged beta. But are you saying that both mods break precombines, or just the Commonwealth one? The seemingly competent and prolific mod author ANDREWCX claims that Scrap That Settlement does not break precombines, so I'd be very interested to learn if that's false.

EDIT: Here's a post where he makes that claim.

(you can see it by changes in material swaps)
Can you explain this?
 
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parrotheada1a

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Something that I've noticed in my current game might be usefull. My system specs are similar to KG's rig, so it's not exactly a potato. A lot of slowdowns and crashes seem to happen in busy areas versus places that are not so built up. My PC Mac is coming up on lvl 98, and I have 220+ mods running. I have also explored much of the map and played through most of the game too. I only started installing SS + addons when Mac was around lvl 30 or so. Understandably, the savegames are decent sized. As an experiment, I set aside 25 Gb of space on one of my SSD's as a system memory cache and I think it has helped in smoothing out the gameplay. I do know one thing though, and it's that I can't fast travel directly into Sanctuary without the game coming to a screeching halt when it tries to load. What I've been having to do is travel to the Rocket and then hoof it over the bridge. Likewise, I've been trying not to make a save in Sanctuary simply because there will be less to load up.
 

drizzan

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Actually all evidence indicates the author of that mod is either outright lying or just doesn't know what they're doing. Tests to see if the mod is breaking precombines on xbox shows that it does (you can see it by changes in material swaps). The mod author has refused to explain how they're doing it and has been unable to explain the evidence indicating broken precombines to people that are experts in the precombine system.

I agree with this, if you are on xbox don't gamble with scrap mods if you want a stable game. Anyone using a scrap mod should consider the risks that comes along with it, especially on consoles where you don't have access to F4SE and vanilla records need to be edited.
 

Catallaxis

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I agree with this, if you are on xbox don't gamble with scrap mods if you want a stable game. Anyone using a scrap mod should consider the risks that comes along with it, especially on consoles where you don't have access to F4SE and vanilla records need to be edited.
I am considering the risks right here and now. It's just that it's hard to get any good information. On the one hand, the authors of STS and STC, @lric and tim-tinman, and at least one other competent and prolific modder, ANDREWCX, are all telling me that they don't break pre-combines. Lots of users in the Bethesda forums are claiming that STS and STC don't cause noticeable performance issues (though there are some oversights and bugs). On the other hand, a user here is claiming that they do break pre-combines, and says that "all the evidence" indicates such, though my attempts to search the internet for such evidence have so far been unsuccessful. Since neither mod is currently available for the PC, it means there is very little discussion about these issues and apparently nobody who can test the mods directly. I do know that STC does not disable occlusion culling, because I've tested that myself.

If it's safe to use STS, then I'd very much like to. There's always risks with mods.
 

damanding

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Well, thanks for the info. I'm not using Scrap That Commonwealth because I don't really trust it, especially since it's tagged beta. But are you saying that both mods break precombines, or just the Commonwealth one? The seemingly competent and prolific mod author ANDREWCX claims that Scrap That Settlement does not break precombines, so I'd be very interested to learn if that's false.

EDIT: Here's a post where he makes that claim.

Can you explain this?
Chucksteel has a thread explaining how to test for broken precombines on xBox. https://bethesda.net/community/post/762468 For what it's worth, that thread was shut down after an argument over whether the scrap mod broke precombines or not (evidence shows it does). I know Chucksteel pretty well, he drinks a lot and argues while drunk and he's dyslexic so his writing isn't always the best. So he may not come across as the most sane arguer of all time, but despite his approach, he IS backed up by the experts such as VlitS. He's also been making mods since at least Fallout 3 and has very extensive experience.
 

damanding

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More information on the precombine systems: https://forums.nexusmods.com/index....timization-and-performance-systems-explained/

VlitS and SMB92 both know the precombined systems really well as does Chucksteel. For PC mods you can also use xEdit (Zilav is a poster in that thread and the person that programs xEdit) to see if precombines are broken. The creators of the console mod refused to provide a copy for PC users to use xEdit to further test if precombines are broken beyond Chucksteel's method. If it were me, I'd listen to the experts who understand the system about as well as Beth developers AND have ways to confirm one way or another vs a mod author who has refused to allow it to be tested and instead insists that the rest of the world just simply believe them.

Edited to add I'm about to head offline for the evening. Given the nature of this discussion I suggest it not become a big blown up argument in this thread. If people want to discuss it further please create a new thread. Thanks! :)
 

drizzan

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I am considering the risks right here and now. It's just that it's hard to get any good information. On the one hand, the authors of STS and STC, @lric and tim-tinman, and at least one other competent and prolific modder, ANDREWCX, are all telling me that they don't break pre-combines. Lots of users in the Bethesda forums are claiming that STS and STC don't cause noticeable performance issues (though there are some oversights and bugs). On the other hand, a user here is claiming that they do break pre-combines, and says that "all the evidence" indicates such, though my attempts to search the internet for such evidence have so far been unsuccessful. Since neither mod is currently available for the PC, it means there is very little discussion about these issues and apparently nobody who can test the mods directly. I do know that STC does not disable occlusion culling, because I've tested that myself.

If it's safe to use STS, then I'd very much like to. There's always risks with mods.

Just as Damanding is saying in the posts above me, just the fact that the mod doesn't exist for PC should make the warning lights signal right away. On PC you have all the tools available to actually check and test what the mod does.
 

Catallaxis

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Chucksteel has a thread explaining how to test for broken precombines on xBox. https://bethesda.net/community/post/762468 For what it's worth, that thread was shut down after an argument over whether the scrap mod broke precombines or not (evidence shows it does). I know Chucksteel pretty well, he drinks a lot and argues while drunk and he's dyslexic so his writing isn't always the best. So he may not come across as the most sane arguer of all time, but despite his approach, he IS backed up by the experts such as VlitS. He's also been making mods since at least Fallout 3 and has very extensive experience.
Chucksteel is great, but this doesn't change much from my perspective. Material swaps are a symptom of broken pre-combines, but so is crappy performance. Apparently, STS and STC cause material swaps, but lots of users are reporting little or no effect to performance. Either those user reports are wrong, or the mods don't actually break pre-combines. I guess I'll end up testing this myself on my next playthrough. I have previously, and unwittingly, played with mods that break precombines in downtown Boston, and the results were predictably game breaking, so I have some prior experience with the problem. I'll let you know how it goes.
 

Catallaxis

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Just as Damanding is saying in the posts above me, just the fact that the mod doesn't exist for PC should make the warning lights signal right away. On PC you have all the tools available to actually check and test what the mod does.
For what it's worth, the author's explanation for this is that his method of enabling scrapping without breaking pre-combines is extremely labour intensive, and he doesn't want his files stolen by others, so for now his mods are PS4 and Xbox exclusive. However, he has stated his intention to eventually release STS for the PC once he is satisfied that is is complete.

From my perspective, all these mod authors appear to offer quality mods, and each can point to long experience making them. Each confidently asserts that the other is incorrect, and each can point to evidence for their case (material swaps vs. user performance reports). That said, I very much doubt that @alric or Tim-tinman are lying, though they very well may be mistaken.
 

damanding

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Placebo effect is an impressive Jedi mind trick. ;)
 

Catallaxis

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Placebo effect is an impressive Jedi mind trick. ;)
The userbase on Bethesda.net is kind of crap. Like you, I suspect that a bunch of users are getting worse performance but just can't tell the difference. However, having played with broken precombines in downtown Boston, the difference wasn't just a 5fps drop, but more like 15 fps dropped and crashing every 5 minutes. This is not something that can be placeboed away easily, so I'm inclined to give the reports more credence.

Of course, another possibility is that my bad experience with broken precombines was exacerbated by other mods and is therefore not representative. So many possibilities.
 

drizzan

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For what it's worth, the author's explanation for this is that his method of enabling scrapping without breaking pre-combines is extremely labour intensive, and he doesn't want his files stolen by others, so for now his mods are PS4 and Xbox exclusive. However, he has stated his intention to eventually release STS for the PC once he is satisfied that is is complete.

From my perspective, all these mod authors appear to offer quality mods, and each can point to long experience making them. Each confidently asserts that the other is incorrect, and each can point to evidence for their case (material swaps vs. user performance reports). That said, I very much doubt that @alric or Tim-tinman are lying, though they very well may be mistaken.

I just find it a bit strange to use the systems without the proper tools as testing grounds and then release it to PC, atleast when it comes to a fairly advanced type of mod. Most mod authors would do it the other way around.
Does the xbox have a FPS counter so you can tell the difference with the mod loaded and disabled?

The precomb system goes way over my head when I try to understand it as I'm just a normal user, all I gather is that getting the precomb/previs system disabled is disaster for performance (especially in big settlements) and is likely leading into crashes in the end, more so if you are using a ton of mods.
 
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Catallaxis

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I just find it a bit strange to use the systems without the proper tools as testing grounds and then release it to PC, atleast when it comes to a fairly advanced type of mod. Most mod authors would do it the other way around.
Does the xbox have a FPS counter so you can tell the difference with the mod loaded and disabled?
No, but I've a good eye for fps, and the difference in downtown Boston was pretty drastic the last time I played with broken precombines. I would tolerate a small fps drop that I could perceive, so an fps drop I don't notice might as well not exist.

The precomb system goes way over my head when I try to understand it as I'm just a normal user, all I gather is that getting the precomb/previs system disabled is disaster for performance (especially big settlements) and is likely to lead to crashes in the end, more so if you are using a ton of mods.
As I previously noted, STC definitely does not disable the previs system (occlusion culling), because I've tested that myself. When you remove a large building, the game engine still renders the scene as though the building were there, i.e. it stops rendering objects that should be behind the building. Of course, the fact that previs is not disabled kind of negates the point of scrapping these objects in the first place, because doing so creates such a big and ugly graphical anomaly.
 

Drask

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No, but I've a good eye for fps, and the difference in downtown Boston was pretty drastic the last time I played with broken precombines. I would tolerate a small fps drop that I could perceive, so an fps drop I don't notice might as well not exist.

As I previously noted, STC definitely does not disable the previs system (occlusion culling), because I've tested that myself. When you remove a large building, the game engine still renders the scene as though the building were there, i.e. it stops rendering objects that should be behind the building. Of course, the fact that previs is not disabled kind of negates the point of scrapping these objects in the first place, because doing so creates such a big and ugly graphical anomaly.

This got me wondering. Do the buildings in SS take advantage of occlusion culling? SSAO or HBAO? It would be interesting to know if the game is trying to draw everything that is not actually in view. Though this doesn't explain why some people have no problems.

What drives me nuts is the complete lack of a resource spike before the crash. I've tried tweaking my hardware too, to see if i could find something the game doesn't like. Disabling SLI, hyperthreading, tons of graphics options... Nothing seems to affect it.
 

damanding

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This got me wondering. Do the buildings in SS take advantage of occlusion culling? SSAO or HBAO? It would be interesting to know if the game is trying to draw everything that is not actually in view. Though this doesn't explain why some people have no problems.

What drives me nuts is the complete lack of a resource spike before the crash. I've tried tweaking my hardware too, to see if i could find something the game doesn't like. Disabling SLI, hyperthreading, tons of graphics options... Nothing seems to affect it.
Because of the way Sim Settlements is designed its not possible to take advantage of occlusion culling. Previs has to be generated from within the Creation Kit and relies on the objects in precombines being the same objects in the same position all the time. In order for Sim Settlements to be able to use custom generated previs there could not be an option for users to use more than one city blueprint per settlement. Not only that, but the city blueprints would have to be made entirely in the Creation Kit vs mostly in game as it is currently designed. Furthermore if Sim Settlements generated a custom previs, it would then become hard incompatible with virtually every single mod that modifies external worldspace throughout the game because previs affects not just the cell you're generating but a 9x9 block of cells. Given the number and placement of settlements, this would mean that previs for nearly the entire game's worldspace would be affected. If that wasn't bad enough, the file sizes involved in custom previs for all settlements would be so enormously huge that Xbox users wouldn't be able to use the mod.

Mod authors aren't avoiding regenerating precombines and previs out of thoughtlessness, ignorance, or just to be jerks. There are very significant consequences to the decision of whether to regnerate precombines/previs or not. The vast majority of mod authors have chosen broader compatibility between mods and avoidance of other problems versus performance, particularly since the performance issues are mostly only game breakers for people with hardware (console or PC) that is already on the very lowest end of being capable of playing the game.
 

Drask

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I didn't realize that it affected the cells as such. I was hoping it was more of a flag for an object/panel/whatever. Thanks for clearing that up.

While the performance issues aren't necessarily a "game breaker" for me. They are extremely annoying. And, I by no means have a potato for a PC.
 

Space387

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So, not sure if this is unique to me but, with all mods removed launching with the stock game I still can not load in at or near sanctuary. I went from a heavily modded game, pulled everything bur F4se and the SS mods then cleaned up the save with fallrim tools. At this point CTD as soon as I get into rendering distance to the first house on the right side of the bridge. Next pulled everything even F4se and I cant even fast travel to the redrocket now. Very odd. Also another save with just the SS mod and its expansions crashes if I try to start up a city in sanctuary.
 

kinggath

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@Space387 For the save with just SS and expansions, how much have you done in the save? Started many of the city builds?
 

Space387

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I was starting my first city in sanctuary. It had to clear a settlement built with stock parts and about 19 or 20 settlers. I actually picked up the save file, best ending, from the nexus to test if it's in my save or game file. The play through was done with no mods and drops you at the end of the main story where you nuke the institute, but all 3 of the other factions are alive.

In this I can fast travel to sanctuary with no issues but as soon as I say build a city it crashes.
 

kinggath

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@Space387 Cool, this gives a good opportunity to test a few things - if you don't mind.

Could you link me that save so I can try that as well?

Then could you go into the City Manager holotape, under Options -> Performance and disable Multi-Threaded City Building and see if it still crashes for you? If it does, disable that and Cinematic Mode, which is under Options -> Gameplay -> City Building. Then let me know the result of both tests.
 
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