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Test Subject
Original Poster
#1 Old 28th Nov 2011 at 6:07 AM
Default Objects in General Layer and question about heightmap
Hi everyone!
I'm working on a big world (huge map, around 150 lots), and I'm very close to finaly finish it but there is a setback. After adding few large lots saving in EiG became unstable and often crash. Eventually this lead to messed up routing (I posted some picture in tread about it).
Now, I do have a back up with normal routing and I can solve this without losing too much time but I want to check something first. While I was checking older versions for routing (to track down where it started) I looked at the version I cleared from lots and trees (demolish lots in EiG, and delete layers in CAW), and realized there are 4500 game objects listed in General Layer. I can only drag them one by one into other layers and delete them from there but they return after saving. Position of all is -20000 on all 3 position and there is no shape visible, just a framework, if I change coordinates, the are still invisible in all views. Apparently they are tied to lots but having no lots in world makes me confused about what can I do.
I checked some other worlds I was working on and all have objects there (less than this one but still have them). I'm now wondering if these objects are possible to remove, and if they may cause lag in game, which I'm working hard to avoid.
This leads me to a second question - out of despare I'm looking for tutorials for height maps (hopefully I find something usable) and noticed someone mentioned roads and bridges etc. My question is doesn't the height map transfer only rough terrain shape while I still have to smooth it and add final touches, paint everything and add all the roads, objects, trees, effects (everything else really)? I'd really like to clear this world to make it playable and those objects are making me very be very cautius, specially with all the crashes and messed routing in almost finished world. Please help Thank you!
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The Camera Eye
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#2 Old 30th Nov 2011 at 5:10 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Anushka
Hi everyone!
I'm working on a big world (huge map, around 150 lots), and I'm very close to finaly finish it but there is a setback. After adding few large lots saving in EiG became unstable and often crash.

Perhaps this is a problem with your install- I've seen several people have an unstable game where they have unpatched EPs, or perhaps a version mismatch. Could you please post the SKU versions of each SP/EP, just to check?
http://simswiki.info/wiki.php?title...ind_Gameversion

For the objects on the global layer- I have a feeling some of these might be to do with spawn points, but it's hard to be sure. In my very large and complex world I have 4500 objects on the global layer- but most of those are lot objects, as I have >150 built lots. I would be tempted to leave them alone, we don't really know enough about them to know if they are a result of an error or even if they will cause lag.

For the heightmap question, yes- the heighmap contains only the 3d data for the world terrain shape. All objects that are placed on layers are contained within that layer file, not in the heightmap.

If you wanted to make a clean version of a world, but with the objects and terrain paints transferred, that would be easy enough. You can import the heightmap to a new world, and then select the terrain paints you want and import your terrain paint layers from the previous world (assuming that you painted on individual layers). Then you could import all object layers from the previous world using this trick:
http://www.modthesims.info/showthread.php?t=429946
The only thing you can't really copy over (or at least, I've not found a good way) is the roads.

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Test Subject
Original Poster
#3 Old 1st Dec 2011 at 4:57 PM
Thank you simsample for such a detailed answer.
SKU versions (from launcher) are:
Base Game: 1.26.89
WA: 2.0.86
HELS: 3.0.38
AMB: 4.0.87
FLS: 5.0.44
LN:6.0.81
OLS: 7.0.55
GEN: 8.0.152
TLS: 9.0.73
Pets: 10.0.96
I do believe that CAW crashing is related to only 2GB of RAM I have, specially since it started to happen when I put some huge lots in it, and continue to do so even after clear reinstall with registry cleaning. My processor is Intell 2.4GHz Core to Duo, and can handle it, but I'm lacking RAM. Still, I do like the idea of having a large world playable for those with not so awesome gaming machines.

About general layer objects, I couldn't delete them, it said they are tied to lots and I should edit them in EiG, but I already deleted all lots in that version of the world and that is what was strange.
And thank you very much for the info about paint layers and for objects. I did use them and it will be a huge help if I don't have to repaint everything, and not to mention replacing objects! Very helpful, thank you.
The Camera Eye
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#4 Old 2nd Dec 2011 at 7:58 AM
WA, HELS, FLS, LN, and OLS all have patches, which you don't have. For normal gameplay this doesn't seem to matter, but we've seen that CAW seems to balk at outdated versions so it would be worth patching to see if that makes any difference.
http://simswiki.info/wiki.php?title...elp:Patch_Table

Archived patched here:
http://simswiki.info/wiki.php?title...wnload/Archived

Of course, your low RAM could be a factor too- although until recently I had CAW working on 2GB RAM (albeit a little slowly). You could try running EIG from this batch file, so that CAW is not open simultaneously:
http://www.modthesims.info/showthread.php?t=453161
Also try it with all nonessential CC removed, as that will help maximise your resources.

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-RUSH
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Test Subject
Original Poster
#5 Old 30th Dec 2011 at 3:44 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by simsample
WA, HELS, FLS, LN, and OLS all have patches, which you don't have. For normal gameplay this doesn't seem to matter, but we've seen that CAW seems to balk at outdated versions so it would be worth patching to see if that makes any difference.
http://simswiki.info/wiki.php?title...elp:Patch_Table

Archived patched here:
http://simswiki.info/wiki.php?title...wnload/Archived

Of course, your low RAM could be a factor too- although until recently I had CAW working on 2GB RAM (albeit a little slowly). You could try running EIG from this batch file, so that CAW is not open simultaneously:
http://www.modthesims.info/showthread.php?t=453161
Also try it with all nonessential CC removed, as that will help maximise your resources.



Again, sorry for late answer. Lowering all settings on minimum and pointing camera into not so dense area helped as well as saving when I move from Editing lots in EiG and Live mod in EiG. I don't use CC at all, rarely even patterns, specially while building this world I uninstalled everything that was not directly related to it.

I did encounter another problem which now makes me crazy. I find out that the master controller can list me all the stuff in household inventories and on lots / and I can delete everything I don't want / it was important to keep it on EA level. But when I do that *too much books and some LTR and stuff I didn't want there I wasn't able to save it and after several attempts One family got corrupted and I had to go back to previous versions and gave up cleaning household inventories like that. Another issue was around hour long saving time and with a job and small kid I rarely had time to stare at PC blinking gray&black for that long While I was trying to save with cleaned household inventories my PC crashed instead of just game, and eventually it messed up bios and it was a struggle to return everything back to normal. I'm guessing it was too much for my poor PC to handle but it was very helpful to check and clean the lots from unneccessary and unwanted objects.

Also, I copied general layer from previous versions where I had just few hundreds objects and when I started to place lots numbers increased accordingly. It probably is some sort of cashe for objects used in a world as someone already mentioned it.
The Camera Eye
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#6 Old 31st Dec 2011 at 7:24 PM
Thanks for the info, Anushka- it's good to know you found some solutions.

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Lab Assistant
#7 Old 21st Feb 2012 at 12:35 PM
Hi everyone,
I'm not sure if this thread is the right place, especially since it hasn't been active for a while; still, I have been busying myself a bit with these mysterious objects on the general layer and thought I'd share my (very humble) findings with you guys.

The reason I got interested in them in the first place was that invisible though they are, they seem to account for some of the file size of a world. Also, I really object to the idea of having anything in my custom world which I have not the slighest idea of concerning what it is, how it came into being, and what it is doing behind my back ;-) So I've been experimenting a bit, and these nameless objects seem to be connected to lots sure enough, although mostly, they do not seem to denote any 'real' object existing on a lot. They're always placed at x, y, z -2000, as has been noted before. The really uncomfortable thing about them is that they stay in the world file even if all the lots have been deleted - you can sort of never get rid of them again it seems. I tried every way I could think of, for example, deleting the lot content in EIG, but the lot itself in CAW vs. deleting both in EIG, and so forth. No matter what I did, these strange objects remained in the general layer.
I tried to figure out whether they were connected to certain types of objects being present on a lot, windows, doors, fireplaces or whatever. I used a completely empty world (with a completely empty general layer as well), plopped down a lot, went into EIG, built a house with just walls, foundation, and roof. Went back into CAW: lot there, no strange object on the general layer. Hm. Next try, new empty world: House built in EIG, with three different windows added (base game, EP, and cc). Result in CAW: no objects in the general layer. But when I tried almost the same thing again, built a house with just walls, roof and windows, and added a door, bang! - one object appeared in the general layer back in CAW. But it was NOT the door, it was of another shape altogether.
Okay I thought, maybe it's still related to the doors for whatever reason, but of course, CAW being the malicious little thingy it is, next time I tried with the house with windows only, sure enough an object appeared on the general layer. WTF?!

And, generally speaking, why are there any lot-related objects present in general layer at all, if all the build/buy things are already in the lot layer?

Well, confused as I am by now, I think I have still managed to figure out some things at least., maybe they can serve as starting points for further research:

1) These objects are not present if there have never been any lots in the respective world.
2) They never disappear again, as far as I'm aware.
3) They always seem to be generated if you insert houses taken from the LIBRARY into your world, no matter if these just consist of some walls and a roof and nothing else. If you create a house in EIG instead, sometimes they are not being generated.
4) I believe some of them could also denote Sims if it is a world which had been prepopulated originally.
5) There seem to be two general sizes of them, one rectangular shape lying flat on its back, one rectangle standing upright, sort of like a thick doorpost or something.
6) Although these two general object things do not seem to be connected to anything specific on a lot, or a specific type of build/buy objects or something, sometimes there are other objects present on the general layer which are indeed specific lot objects - they seem to get left behind when deleting lots. For example, I found a number of general layer objects in one custom world I depopulated and 'de-lotted' before that were the little figures in a Gnubb game.

To sum it up, I reckon one should be really, really cautious with placing lots in a custom world, because in one way, you never get rid of them again. CAW remembers them forever, and they are also not deleted once you export your world to the game; file size stays exactly the same. There must be a way of deleting them cleanly though, because the general layers in Riverview-Lite and Sunset Valley-Lite are empty ...

Well I've run out of ideas for now what else to try to figure out what it is these creepy invisible rectangles actually do; but maybe someone else wants to get started on them as well?
The Camera Eye
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#8 Old 28th Feb 2012 at 12:16 AM
Tiinii, thank you for your research! This is most interesting, I will definitely take a look at this next time I'm working with CAW. In the mean time, I'm hoping others will see this and post their findings, too!

For the EA Worlds, I suspect that they work on their worlds by assigning each 'region' of a map to a team, who build that region on a single layer. Then, at the end, all layers are spliced into a clean copy of the world. This makes sense if you look at the EA worlds in CAW, as they are split into areas with lots, trees and deco on a single layer.

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Lab Assistant
#9 Old 28th Feb 2012 at 1:37 PM
Simsample, I was really sort of hoping you'd pick up on this, great! ;-)

Concerning EA worlds, I think your creation scenario sounds real plausible. Still, I'm not sure whether this would actually prevent these "non-objects" from appearing. Cause they seem to be generated once there are lots with objects on them present, so I guess they would be created once the new complete world is saved for the first time. But then again, if it DOES work this way, couldn't we also use this technique for creating 'clean' custom worlds? I've read the thread concerning splicing foreign layers into a world, and while it did sound rather complicated, it's still obviously possible. I'd just love to experiment with houses in CAW / EIG and not have to export the WIP to the game proper like 200 times, just to see where I'll be putting which lot in the end ...
The Camera Eye
retired moderator
#10 Old 28th Feb 2012 at 7:08 PM
Ah, but if you are splicing a world together from many different layers, there is no need to save it again in CAW!

You can even splice layers/ resources into a world file and then export it without having to open it or save it, so the possibility is there to create a 'clean' world, if this were to work.

Routing can be done by assembling a version of the world, calculating routing and then importing the routing resources to the clean world file. So you see that because we are getting more familiar with the resources in a world file, and understanding what some of them do, we have more power with CAW.

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Lab Assistant
#11 Old 6th Mar 2012 at 3:46 PM
Simsample, sorry for being so late with my reply, don't have much spare time right now - thanks for the correction concerning the "spliced-together" worlds! Stupid me, of course they would not need to be saved in CAW again; I've read the thread on how this is done, already looking forward to trying in a little while. I'd be a bit scared of the routing import part, though, cause for me, with routing, everything that can go wrong will most definitely do so ;-) Also, it sort of annoys me that we cannot get rid of these strange non-objects in any other, more straight-forward way. There must be something wrong within the mechanics of CAW, so to speak, if it retains these things even after lots have been deleted. If one could only find out which resources are tied to the lot information exactly, we could at least just delete them via S3pe. Maybe I'll give it a try one day with a real small world and just one lot ...
Anyways, happy CAWing!
The Camera Eye
retired moderator
#12 Old 6th Mar 2012 at 7:15 PM
Yes, I think you're right- it does seem to be some kind of error in CAW. I was thinking about this recently, and noticed that a new world with just two lots had several global layer objects. One of the lots had the pesky gnubb set and the other had a city hall.

I've noticed before that those gnubb sets never work correctly if you place them on a lot you include with a world- the jigs seems to get messed up and the sims play the game at the wrong angle for some reason. So perhaps this is partly why!

Anyway, I loaded the world in-game and stuck two bin sins in the lot, so that I could use Twallan's Master Controller to look at the object stats. These are some of the things I noticed:



Hmm, the core.forwarder looks familiar! I remember reading something about that before too, so I did some digging and found this:
http://bearmtncreations4sims3.com/i...in-globe-layer/

Also Twallan mentions that Error Trap can solve 'bogus Inventory' issues:
Quote:
"Bogus Inventory Item" logs are the result of ErrorTrap locating an object that is supposed to be in an inventory, but the inventory itself has been removed from the game. Normally this is the result of cleanup due to CAW errors in custom worlds, however it will also occur during regular play as well.

http://nraas.wikispaces.com/ErrorTrap+Reading+Logs
Of course, the gnubb set is 'portable', so can be carried in the sim's inventory!

So maybe we are learning to keep away from gnubb sets in CAW/EIG.

I have a whole bunch (4000+) of them in a large world I made, and they don't seem to cause any problems in gameplay. I've been playing the world for 5 sim generations now with no trouble.
Screenshots

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Lab Assistant
#13 Old 18th Apr 2012 at 11:14 AM
That's rather fascinating, Simsample, thanks for the link to the other discussion thread as well. Yes, I figured too that the Gnubb set was one of the culprits, because I've seen it behaving weirdly in a custom world I tried to remodel. And from what you write, obviously a number of the strange global layer objects must be those forwarders of the Gnubb set.

On the other hand, I've seen these white boxy objects appear in worlds which never had any Gnubb set, or any other portable/Inventory item. And this object stats list you included, doesn't it seem to hint that maybe stairs could be responsible as well? Because they are shown as a white box?

Generally, my problem right now is that I am building my own custom world, not to upload, just to play for myself, so I'll have a place with as little bugs and glitches as possible - well, and these global layer objects have so far prevented me from placing any fully built lots via EIG, because I don't know what they will leave behind if I decide to take them out again. I'm sort of longing for a clean, pure little world with no weird issues, know what I mean ? One in which I can finally just PLAY and nothing else. Thus, even if they don't really do anything, I don't want them there, because I don't know what they COULD do, and also if they are eating up resources / enlarging the file.

I think I'll play around with stairs on lots one of these days, see how they actually behave. Although I'm rather sure that on those small lots I tested in between, which left behind global layer objects (I'll just be giving them a fetching acronym now, GLO ;-)) as well, there weren't any stairs, just doors and windows. Hm ... I'll report back with my findings! ;-)
The Camera Eye
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#14 Old 18th Apr 2012 at 2:19 PM
It seems that any work you do to lots- whether it is placing a library lot, editing an existing lot or moving a lot- in EIG mode will slap unknown items onto the global layer. Very annoying!

Someone on another forum had a streetlight stuck under the ocean that appeared to be on the global layer, so I wrote a tutorial for how to clean the Global Layer, as it was on my list since this thread. It's the same as the tutorial for splicing layers from another world, except that you have to hex edit a slightly different resource, since the global layer is defined in a different place to the other layers.

If you keep a copy of the clean global layer you make then you can just copy-paste it back into your world if you ever need to edit it and 'dirty' the global layer again.

I'd be interested to know if this works for you; it works fine in the worlds I've tested it in, but of course I need to know if there are any potential problems! So if you feel like trying it, I'd appreciate it.

Here's the tutorial:
http://www.modthesims.info/showthread.php?t=473791

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-RUSH
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Lab Assistant
#15 Old 4th May 2012 at 2:06 PM
Simsample, I'm just printing the tutorial and will give it a go over the weekend - always wanted to try that splicing technique of yours anyway. But I'm wondering, what is the global layer really there for, if it can be replaced with an 'empty' version just like that? I always thought that maybe the roads were stored on that layer, because they do not appear in any of the other layers. But then again, roads are not objects like trees and such ...

Anyways, I'll be real happy if it works out, I'm itching to put my pretty lots in my world for good, but haven't dared yet, because of the strange white object problem. Cheerio! And have a great weekend, everyone ;-)
The Camera Eye
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#16 Old 7th May 2012 at 11:29 AM
The roads are stored in UNKN 0x9063660E which is part of the world file and not part of a layer (in the unpacked world). As for what the global layer purpose is, I really don't know- it is necessary as the game and CAW look for it, but it's contents aren't really understood. If you look at the 'lite' worlds that come with CAW- Riverview_Lite and SunsetValley_lite, you will see that the global layers contain a whole bunch of SNAP resources (sim thumbnails), a UNKN resource (0xA2377025) and a DETL resource (0x03DA6EA4). However, if you create a blank world in CAW, the global layer will be generated with the DETL, but the SNAP and the UNKN 0xA2377025 are not present. Instead, there are two UNKN 0x342779A7 resources, two REFS 0x05ED1226, and OBJN and an OBJS. The latter contains information about Script cores:

I have no idea what that means, and no idea why it's not in the LITE worlds (unless of course, they stripped it out and CAW will put them back when you save). For the EA worlds, it's hard to tell what would have been contained in the global layer, since we have to simulate that anyway in order to unpack those world files.

So, maybe the Global layer is just a placeholder of some sort, or perhaps merely used in order to differentiate a packed file from a non-packed file. Or maybe it actually does have an important function, but I'm just not seeing it!

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Lab Assistant
#17 Old 13th May 2012 at 10:49 AM
Thanks simsample, I've always wondered about the roads!

I've played some with replacing the global layer, and so far, it works like a charm and isn't half as complicated as I feared it would be! Apparently, it also doesn't cause any problems for the lots in the world. I'll keep on testing some more though, because I'm having trouble with one world where I did this, but the trouble can be due to a number of reasons.

I've also found out that if you put in a clean global layer, you can delete occupied lots (with houses, I mean) just like anything else in CAW, without having to call up EIG, which is just great. I shall make a little thread on this I guess, so others know, too.
The Camera Eye
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#18 Old 8th Jun 2012 at 12:17 PM
Good information, Tiinii! I've been testing the clean global layer with so far no problems, although I'm not sure there are any real benefits either (apart from being neater).

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Mad Poster
#19 Old 15th Sep 2012 at 10:47 PM
I might have to try this out. I recently noticed a large number of objects in the Global Layer of my custom world I am working on. A lot of them appear to be the Dr. Pepper deckchair for whatever reason.
Like Tiinii, I don't like the idea of my game doing things I'm not aware of that could potentially cause issues.

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Lab Assistant
#20 Old 19th Sep 2012 at 11:23 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Menaceman44
I might have to try this out. I recently noticed a large number of objects in the Global Layer of my custom world I am working on. A lot of them appear to be the Dr. Pepper deckchair for whatever reason.
Like Tiinii, I don't like the idea of my game doing things I'm not aware of that could potentially cause issues.


And it's not only the potential problems they might cause, they also do add to the file size. For me, cleaning the global layer has worked without any trouble so far, hope the process will help you there too, Menaceman. Otherwise, do post please, I'm still really interested in this weird business!
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#21 Old 19th Sep 2012 at 1:33 PM
Quick question: Has anyone tried this with a populated world? I noticed that instances of sims in populated worlds tend to appear as objects in the global layer, and I'm worried that if anyone with a populated world tried this they could (a) strip the sims out, which isn't a big deal (b) strip only parts of the sims out and do something corrupting and messy. Something to keep in mind, and perhaps something to test.

It could be that splicing in a clean global layer should only ever be done prior to populating a world using the existing methods.

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In the Arena
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#22 Old 19th Sep 2012 at 4:03 PM
I've just done it on Sunset Valley with the routing fixes. Since there was an issue with Lot tears, that I'm looking into anyway. Once I release this version "into the wild" we can get broader feedback on what impact cleaning this up has on a populated world.

And by the way, @simsample, your tutorial on cleaning the layer works like a charm!
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#23 Old 20th Sep 2012 at 12:27 AM Last edited by kiwi_tea : 20th Sep 2012 at 1:02 AM. Reason: dissecting *scalpel scapel*
I did a quick test on a back up of a current project, and this method does indeed strip all the sims out of a world - both homeless sims, and sims assigned to lots. Whether that applies to EA worlds or not is another matter, seeing as they no doubt have better methods for getting sims into the world in the first place. But certainly, any sims added by our current methods disappear when the global layer is replaced. I don't know whether that's an extremely thorough or an extremely messy way of removing them either. :P

Edit: That all said, if we can learn how sims are stored in the global layer we might develop a tidier method for getting them into worlds, alongside actually getting ghosts in. EIG and CAW's fundamental inability to instantiate ghost sims tells us that EA has another method. simsample's suggestion of splicing in the global layer - or something like it - would make a lot of sense.

Edit: Opened the global layer in S3PE and there are the snap files for all the sims portraits, plus a bunch of resources I'm not qualified to name. Having a look at the wiki file types list to identify some of them.

0x0580A2CD - Tons of SNAP portraits of sims
0xA2377025 - Saved Game
0x0580A2CC - Unknown x7
0x343779A7 - Unknown x3
0x04F7BDA7 - Unknown x1
0x03D86EA4 - World "lot" info
0x05ED1226 - Store of resources, eg, list of sims outfits, etc. x2
0x06B981ED - Script state dump
0x06CE4804 - Meta data, no page for this on the wiki.
0x4D1A5589 - Object instances

Well. I don't know whether that's helpful or not. It was to me, but more experienced types have already had a look.

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The Camera Eye
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#24 Old 20th Sep 2012 at 2:00 PM
Very helpful, Kiwi- I did test with the EA populated worlds, but of course the sims are stored in the world file for those (you'll see the SNAP and sim resources in the world files if you open them, and then there is the xml file to initialise them). I'll add a note in the tutorial to mention about user populated worlds.

Edit: Added a big red warning!
http://modthesims.info/showthread.php?p=3830627

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In the Arena
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#25 Old 21st Sep 2012 at 7:02 AM
Uh-oh! I just tested with an exported Sunset Valley version, and yes, no Sims!
Images to confirm population numbers with MC. Hehe, aren't my world names oh so creative?
Might this be the definitive way to create a de-populated world? As all other versions I downloaded always have some of the population stuck to the world and it is not 100% EA-pudding-free.

So now, I have to think on how to incorporate the changes with a clean layer and a cleaned up (well, minimized really) Lot tears to EA worlds without any other destruction.
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