10 Must-Download Kenshi Mods

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Despite the love it has received since launch last year, Kenshi still has some rough spots to iron out. As diligent as always, the modding community has stepped in to alleviate most of those problems or at least cut down on the more annoying aspects of the game — with some handy mods.

From recruitable prisoners to an in-game biome map and more, we've rounded up the 10 best Kenshi mods that are currently available.

Note: If you've browsed around for Steam and Nexus Mods before, you've probably noticed the Workshop has significantly more options available than Nexus, which isn't usually the case.

That's because in many cases, modders have stopped updating the Nexus Mods versions during the course of the game's lengthy open beta. If a mod there doesn't work in the full release version, there's a good bet you can find an equivalent mod over on the Steam Workshop instead.

Mod: The Lightsaber

Do I even need to say this out loud? OF COURSE you need lightsabers in Kenshi, and anyone who tells you otherwise is not your friend.

When you start a new game with this mod installed, you get four characters with randomly colored lightsaber options. Sadly, they don't glow as a light source (yet) but maybe down the line the modder will update it with that effect?

Mod: Martial Village

A lot of work went into this mod, which adds in an entire new settlement full of monks with unique clothing, custom dialog, and a ton of new items and furniture types.

After downloading Martial Village, head to the high bonefields biome at the southern end of the map (southeast of the swamp area) to find the new location.

Thanks to PurpleSailBoat for the tip!

Mod: Recruitable Prisoners

This is easily one of the most popular mods for Kenshi, and for very good reason. Unarmed, captured prisoners now have a small chance to be recruited -- and they come with their own unique dialog.

This mod also opens up the possibility of recruiting creatures like the Frog Prince and the Error Code robots.

You should note a potential issue, however -- some users have reported problems where turret guards won't actually do anything when you have prisoners in cages while this mod is installed.

In some instances, turret gunners will also shoot at new recruits when you recruit prisoners. In either case, just save and reload to fix the issue.

Mod: Moar Unique Dialog

In terms of extending the life of the game and keeping things interesting, mods like this one are simply a must-have. Moar Unique Dialog does exactly what it sounds like: it adds extra lines for dozens of unique recruits.

Make sure to use this one in conjunction with the recruitable prisoners mod listed on the previous slide for the biggest effect. However, keep in mind any other dialog mod will conflict with this one as of this writing.

Mod: 256 Recruitment Limit

Other than Recruitable Prisoners, this is the other must-have mod. I don't recommend playing Kenshi without it.

Once you've mastered survival on your own, it's time to start recruiting a squad, which will help you thrive in the post-apocalypse. Thing is, to have your own army, you need more space than the vanilla game allows.

That's where this mod comes into play; it increases the recruitment limit to 256, maximum members available for a squad to 50, and the maximum squad limit to 20.

If you use multiple mods, make sure to place this one at the bottom of the load order. Many different mods out there change the values on the game's data tables, and they will often overwrite the 256 recruitment value.

Mod: Interesting Recruits

Want more story-heavy recruits to spice up the game's empty spaces? This mod does exactly that, offering up interesting new recruits who spawn in different taverns.

From cannibals to disfigured scientists to samurai, there's something for everyone with these seven new characters:

  • Grimm
  • Optic
  • Katharciss
  • Okuro
  • Yunomi
  • Mikael
  • L'Cie

Mod: Interior And Exterior Design

Want to build all of those cool non-researchable furniture items you've found across the game?

With this mod, you can research and build pillows, shelves, benches, and more. Note that some objects will still only be decoration after being built, even though they look like you should be able to sit/sleep on them.

Mod: Shops Have More Items

Wish shops had more money and items available? This mod drastically increases both in many shops found across the game. It also changes the base values so that a shop's inventory refreshes more quickly.

Important note, though: don't use this mod with other shop modifications active at the same time as they will cause major conflicts with one another.

Mod: Dark UI

Don't care for Kenshi's standard user interface? Neither did the awesome modder behind this enhancement to the game.

With Dark UI installed, all of the game's interfaces get a cleaner, darker appearance that is much easier to navigate.

Note that if different menus appear stretched or you can't read the text after installing this mod (like shop money no longer appearing where it should), you just need to change the game's screen resolution to 1920x1080 to resolve the issue.

Mod: Storage Sheds

This handy mod drastically simplifies the game's storage micromanagement. Rather than filling a shack with storage bins, shacks themselves now hold storage and get their own building tabs for easy browsing.

The mod also throws in a handful of decorations you can place next to sheds to remind yourself what you were storing in which shed. 

Mod: Weight Bench - Strength Training

This is another mod aimed at simplifying Kenshi's micromanagement, and it succeeds in spades.

Rather than training your recruits with rock-filled backpacks, you can now quickly boost their strength by building a weight bench.

Note that you have to unlock the training dummies first, and the weight bench is actually found in the interior tab of the building menu, rather than the training tab.

Mod: Populated Cities

Tired of all the empty, lifeless cities found across the game world? With this mod, every major population center gets significantly more interactable characters; it also upgrades NPC behavior.

Now citizens will buy things from stores you own, and they all operate on more realistic schedules, like leaving their shops to buy supplies or going to their homes to perform chores at night.

Mod: In-Game Biome Map

Want to know exactly where the boundaries of each biome can be found without having to exit the game and check the online wikis?

This small but very nifty mod adds a biome border display over the normal in-game map. If you don't like the bright biome hues that don't quite fit with the overall color scheme of the game, there's also a non-colored version of this mod here.

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What do you think of these Kenshi mods? Are there others we left off that you think we should add? Sound off in the comments and let us know. 

Published Dec. 13th 2018

Featured Contributor

Ty splits his time between writing horror fiction and writing about video games. After 25 years of gaming, Ty can firmly say that gaming peaked with Planescape Torment, but that doesn't mean he doesn't have a soft spot for games like Baldur's Gate, Fallout: New Vegas, Bioshock Infinite, and Horizon: Zero Dawn. He has previously written for GamerU and MetalUnderground. He also writes for PortalMonkey covering gaming laptops and peripherals.

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