If you have launched OpenMW CS already and played around with it for a bit, you will have noticed that the interface is made entirely of tables. This does not mean it works just like a spreadsheet application though, it would be more accurate to think of databases instead. Due to the vast amounts of information involved with Morrowind tables made the most sense. You have to be able to spot information quickly and be able to change them on the fly.

Used Terms

An entry in OpenMW CS representing an item, location, sound, NPC or anything else.
Instance, Object

When an item is placed in the world, it does not create a whole new record each time, but an instance of the object.

For example, the game world might contain a lot of exquisite belts on different NPCs and in many crates, but they all refer to one specific instance: the Exquisite Belt record. In this case, all those belts in crates and on NPCs are instances. The central Exquisite Belt instance is called an object. This allows modders to make changes to all items of the same type in one place.

If you wanted all exquisite belts to have 4000 enchantment points rather than 400, you would only need to change the object Exquisite Belt rather than all exquisite belt instances individually.

Some columns are recurring throughout OpenMW CS, they show up in (nearly) every table.

Each item, location, sound, etc. gets the same unique identifier in both OpenMW CS and Morrowind. This is usually a very self-explanatory name. For example, the ID for the (unique) black pants of Caius Cosades is Caius_pants. This allows players to manipulate the game in many ways. For example, they could add these pants to their inventory by opening the console and entering: player- >addItem Caius_pants. In both Morrowind and OpenMW CS the ID is the primary way to identify all these different parts of the game.

This column shows what has happened (if anything) to this record. There are four possible states in which it can exist:

The record is unmodified and from a content file other than the one currently being edited.
This record has been added in the currently content file.
Similar to base, but has been changed in some way.
Similar to base, but has been removed as an entry. This does not mean, however, that the occurrences in the game itself have been removed! For example, if you were to remove the CharGen_Bed entry from morrowind.esm, it does not mean the bedroll in the basement of the Census and Excise Office in Seyda Neen will be gone. You will have to delete that instance yourself or make sure that that object is replaced by something that still exists otherwise the player will get crashes in the worst case scenario.