We've had a general Site Suggestions thread recently, in which a bunch of suggestions were put forward and changes made for general site features, profile stuff, and download browser features; however right now we'd like more suggestions on another important function of the site: Creation.
Modding resources are central to MTS, so if you have suggestions for or issues with the Create forums and tutorials, Creator Feedback Forum, Creator Issues, upload wizard, or moderation process - please do fire away. Anything to make the whole system more intuitive and easier to use, as well as more efficient and more helpful to creators; even simple things like adding an explanation if something is vague, are considered potentially Good Ideas.
There are a few things this thread is not for:
Do not post requests for content here. The staff don't make the uploads.
In regard to Sims2 only (I don't have 3 yet) -- don't know the solution, but the whole object modding/creation organization is very confusing. Do I go to the Wiki Tutorials or the normal Tutorials? Are they the same?
How do I get to the Wiki list of TXMT parameters? How do I find Pixelhate's TXMT stuff? Of course I have them bookmarked now, but I never seem to be able to get there by logic. (There are rumors that my 'logic' resembles chaos theory.) What other treasures are buried there that I haven't stumbled on?
When I hit a particular detail problem I always try to use the search function for answers. I suspect many answers are already in the repair section or discussed somewhere, because I'm not doing anything very advanced or esoteric. However, I rarely manage a sucessful search.
For me, once I completed the "START here" phase of creation, finding answers/info became difficult. The "Start Here" basic tutorials are WONDERFUL and clearly identified. Easy to get started, not so easy to continue on.
I agree, I think many of the tutorials should be in the actual tutorial section as well instead of spread out all over the creation discussion forums. There are so many helpful things in there that you wouldn't come across just by clicking the tutorials link.
I know that the last 2 posters already said it, but I agree about the tutorials. Once you get past the basic, starter tutorials finding more advanced ones is confusing. This has a lot to do with the fact that posts were moved/merged and clicking on links in one post often brings you right back to something you just read.
In fact, right now I've got 4 tabs open with tutorials. I started with one and that lead to another, which led to..you get the idea. If someone were just starting out creating, they might run away screaming in terror.
bluetexas The link for Tutorials in the Create -> Sims 2 menu is the wiki link, and this should be used for your starting point for whatever you want to do. Probably the reason the TXMT stuff isn't in the list is becuase, well, nobody has added it. The wiki can be edited by users, to add new tutorials or to link in existing ones if need be, or adding them to the category etc.
Half the problem is that the tutorials lists have been built up over years, but when somebody posts new info or a new thread here, they dont get updated that often becuase people are afraid of the wiki. If people actually updated it more, or added new links and so on, then I think this would cover many of the issues with the advanced stuff.
Also, I've said before many times that we desperatley need more creator challenges. What do the staff have against them recently? There was a time, long ago, when they were very common around here, and a lot of fun to participate in.
I would like to be able to only see *all* the Sims 2 threads in the CFF. Especially if we add more subsections, then you'd have to work through even more of them to see all the Sims 2 related things.
Even better would be the possibility to have a sticky "Sims 2" selection across the whole site - but I'm sure that's very difficult. I'm beginning to recognise Sims 3 things before I click on them, but not everytime. "Hey, what a cool looking insert download type in the featured box" <click> "Damn it's Sims 3".
I second the creator challenges.
Upload process is good already I think - although I have had a few people PM me and ask me how to upload - to which I've answered click on the upload wizard it tells you all about how to upload. Dunno how to make that more obvious? I suspect first timers don't want to click on the upload wizard until they have read about it, but I find it the easiest way to get at all the relevant info.
We do want to do more creator challenges - they're just very labor intensive on staff to keep up on, and we want to do them right when we do them. Having enough bodies to cover what we want to do is something we're working to remedy, and hopefully challenges will fare better as part of that.
Those of you who've mentioned tutorials that are scattered throughout the create forums: tell us about them! In theory, when someone posts a tutorial, they're supposed to let staff know so we can check that it's comprehensible and generally right, then we move it to the tutorials sections and add it to the wiki. People don't always do so, though. But if you think that a tutorial should be listed, then go ahead and post in Site Issues or PM a mod, or just add it to the wiki yourself - we're happy for any help with keeping track of tutorials.
"On the page, punctuation performs its grammatical function, but in the mind of the reader it does more than that. It tells the reader how to hum the tune." - Lynn Truss, Eats, Shoots and Leaves
One little nitpick I have about uploading is the number of pics allowed in an upload. We really need more than just 8, I'm planning on uploading something that will require a whole boatload of pics, and I don't know if I should divide it into several uploads, or post the pics in comments, or what I should do. 8 is not enough.
Would it be possible in the Sims 3 Creation forum to have tutorials subforums for Modding/Meshing/Patterns like the build section has? There are some useful ones in there that get buried with all the discussion. Cmomoney just posted one yesterday in modding that seems very useful, plus there are a few regarding dds for different paint programs. I know some are in the Wiki and that they lead back to the thread in the forum.
Oh, yes please! I second HugeLunatic's suggestion. It'd be easier to find tutorials while the Wiki gets tidied and updated. But either way, someone needs to do it.
I guess, instead of whining, I could start contributing in the Wiki pages too. But I've always been afraid to touch the Wiki for fear of doing things wrong or putting in the wrong information. There are checks and balances to that, right? I mean, there'll be someone verifying data the contributors entered and that things don't get screwed up?
I forgot to add that I liked that repair centre for the TS2 modding section very much! Might we have something like that for the TS3 section soon? Provided there's someone to be the repairer...or more than a couple someones.
I agree with dividing CFF into more sections than just "sims 2" and "sims 3" (and the ability to click on a category to see only that category in CFF.) I'm sure there are people who will only want to see all sims 3 things, as well as people who only want all sims 2 things, and people who don't care which game they are helping with but only want to help with lots or with sims.
And I agree that it would be a lot more comforting for a first time uploader to be able to find a sample walkthrough of an upload. (Not that I have made anything that I consider good enough to try uploading here.)
Edit: A wiki has checks and balances built in by having the other members of the community edit inaccurate information. If everyone tries to be as accurate as possible the best insurance the wiki has is to get as many people as possible to actually use it. If you know how to add information that needs to be added, register and add it!
1. Yes more sections (Especially neighborhoods with the new tool coming in the next month)
2. Please separate TS2 & TS3 Building boards, I know they are similar but not the same! I can't tell you how many times i've clicked a topic only for it to be the wrong section!
I have to say that it would be great to have some more in depth tutorials concerning more complex shapes in milkshape.
I haven't had any luck coming across any tutorials of that nature yet, and I'm trying not to drown myself in all the different 3D modeling programs, so it would be nice to have some guidance.
I've tried to make curvy things in milkshape but I'm not having much luck..
and if it's somewhere here and i've missed it, I apologize. i have terrible searching skills.
Regarding tutorials, I've been reading up on a lot of them lately and come across some really great ones. What's been bothering me though is that several of them, while excellent text wise, is obviously referencing non-existant images. Like: "...and you should get something like this:" Followed by a few blank rows and then the next step of the tutorial begins. No image.
I do realize that it's possible my own browser/computer/whatever settings prevent the site from showing images, but since I CAN see pictures in other threads and such, I kind of doubt that. There's also the fact that many of the tutorials are very old by now and the once images lost to cyber space forever, but if there was a way to remedy this, I think I wouldn't be the only one grateful for it.
I'm gonna pixelate the world! The WORLD I tell you!
jonin: For particular uploads than can be considered exceptional in that they really do need more than 8 pictures, we'll bend the rule. It's there mostly to stop people from giving us 15 pictures of a tshirt, and to keep loading times reasonable in general - but if you think you have a valid reason to use more, explain your reason and there should be no problem. Also remember that if you want more pics to show off your upload in addition to the required pics, you can upload to MYP and link them in the upload text.
Robodl95: They've been split up for about two months now. If any new threads are posted in the wrong one, then the OP needs directing to the correct forum.
Kiseloxid: Unfortunately there's no way to correct all of those at once. There are various things that could cause this. However, if you PM the tutorial's author, they can fix it if they're still about.
Re. splitting CFF up further, sounds like a plan. I'll talk to Big D.
"On the page, punctuation performs its grammatical function, but in the mind of the reader it does more than that. It tells the reader how to hum the tune." - Lynn Truss, Eats, Shoots and Leaves
Wouldn't it be nice to have another tab in your creator pages for you to link to say, the top 6 things you have uploaded off-site? Many creators participate on websites like Livejournals, or their own personal sites, or just are scattered about everywhere. This could be extremely useful if you were more active on another forum, but occasionally post things here, or if you wanted to share something you didn't feel were up to the standards of the site. Maybe It could also be used to showcase things like Movies, or Stories.
The idea I had was say Four spaces to upload a picture (500x600? [Rough]) to be thumbnailed and a small field to say about what it is. Then a Link.
Well, Thats just my idea! I'm sure that Delphy can come up with something more practical :D
Petchy: That idea was brought up recently and, to be honest, I wasn't enthusiastic about it. Your MTS profile should be about you on MTS - not about what you do elsewhere. There is already the signature, your home page and the About box provided that can have custom links in it - I really don't think having a whole seperate system to track off site links is in keeping with promoting this site.
I have been receiving questionable requests for changes to my Same-sex Realism submission, usually beginning with the argument that it's extremely easy to make tuning mods.
The vast majority of Sims players are not hackers. They aren't going to download S3PE and S3OC. They aren't going to read the tutorials. They are simply going to browse the mods available for download and be disappointed if they don't find what they're looking for. They may even go to another web site and do a Google search. Only a small percentage is going to go to the trouble to make and test tuning mods, or any other custom content.
There are levels of player:
1. A player who buys the game and plays it without custom content.
2. A player who downloads a bit of custom content.
3. A player who makes "easy" content like custom wallpaper with an EA tool.
4. A player who makes moderately easy to make yet time-consuming custom content like paintings and tuning mods.
5. A player who can code, do 3D modeling, and the like.
Most players fall into categories 1-3.
It is not so easy to know what's hiding in the gameplay package. Some things aren't labeled very intuitively and some "simple" changes require testing. Any testing is effort that exceeds the "extremely easy" argument.
The "time/effort" basis for determining the eligibility of content is a flawed one because time and effort are often not the measure of quality or value. As I noted in another post, I could spend years painting on a canvas and it wouldn't be superior to a painting by Van Gogh who often spent less than one day on a painting. At least, it wouldn't be in as much public demand as the Van Gogh.
I have seen no mod that touches the variable concerning the number of times a player must force a character to initiate same-sex romantic socials before they will happen autonomously between the two characters. Tracking down the value that is responsible for this was hardly "extremely easy". I only discovered it because I did a complicated Google search and asked a question to the right person. In fact, there were only two references to it, one of which had almost no information about it. Simply tracking down the appropriate line of code in the vast gameplay package, knowing what it's used for, and knowing how to change it is effort that exceeds "extremely easy", as is going through the effort of submitting the mod for download. Yet, every time I make changes, the reviewer reposts the bit about it being so extremely easy to make tuning mods, which suggests to me that when I make the other changes.... in the end the mods will be rejected with this flawed argument.
I, like other players, want to be able to find mods that do useful things and not have to invent the wheel myself. Mod the Sims is a service. Forcing users to do things themselves isn't service and it's not efficient. As I mentioned in the other post, I made the Van Gogh paintings because I didn't find them on Mod the Sims and was very surprised to not find them. Why should so many Sims players who are looking for them have to go to so much trouble to make them?
It is not easy, either, especially when there are bugs in S3OC and missing or flawed points in the tutorial. One of the points in the comments for the tutorial said all but certain files can be safely deleted.... Yet, when one does that with certain paintings, one ends up with a black sphere instead of a painting! I am still in the process of discovering which files I can delete from the Modern painting template so I can manually go through each recolor I made from it and delete the appropriate files.
Tuning mods are extremely small downloads and yet I was not only told I had to separate my two mods that ideally should be used together, which were clearly differentiated in the Read Me, in the naming of the files, and in the description of the mods... When I went to the trouble of creating two Read Me documents, multiple versions of the mods (which was unnecessary in the case of the first "conversion" mod in my view, but required by the reviewer), and uploaded a download that contains all the mods as well as zip files that contain only one mod or the other... I got another demand to split each flavor of each mod into a separate download. I didn't even want there to be so many flavors.
Why should players have to manually initiate a same-sex romantic social in order to get autonomy 3 times rather than the minimum of 1 (after modification the game appears to require at least one of these artificial player actions)? It defies the point of my mods which is greater realism.
I'm beginning to feel like I'm being toyed with or that there is no intention to publish these mods in the first place. It was bad enough to have to create versions of my mod that require users to initiate more than the mandatory 1 unrealistic forced same-sex romantic interaction (as opposed to the game's ridiculous default of 6) without having to make minor and even silly change after change.
People can read instructions about not installing more than one flavor of a mod, and if they can't, then they certainly shouldn't be assumed to be able to create the mods in the first place!
I am willing to create individual downloads for all these flavors (including the unnecessary ones I was required to make), but only if someone can tell me that the mod will be published. Otherwise, I'm going to move on and use my energy more wisely.
I've spent an inordinate amount of time on the Van Gogh paintings which were rejected and since I was asked to resubmit them, I have spent a lot more time adding more paintings and improving the ones I made. But, I haven't uploaded the changed version because I have still more work to do to shrink the size of the new paintings done with a different template. But, in the back of my mind I'm wondering if I'm going to get yet another rejection after all this work. It makes me wonder whether I should bother to resubmit at all.
superstition: Simply put, all the other mods on here that have multiple flavours or types are packaged as seperate zip files - why should your particular mod be different?
I think you are getting all hung up on the automated part of the changes required message - the standard one that gets attached to all game mods that don't have multiple flavours. In actual fact, you should concentrate on the Other reason.
Mod The Sims is actually here to both provide downloads *and* to help people learn for themselves. Why else do you think we have links to both the XML tuning tutorial and the Mod Generator (which, incidentally, does make it very easy to look and see what scripts are already there and to modify them) in the actual download area for Game Mods? We are not just "yet another download site for the Sims 3". We encourage people to figure things out for themselves and them post them up, and actually, we, as staff, determine what MTS is, whether it is a service or not, and where we want to take the site.
To be honest, you are just going to have to accept that MTS does have moderation, and it does control which mods get approved here - and it doesn't take much time and effort to split one zip file into two. The reason we ask for multiple flavours is becuase generally speaking the Sims 3 is extremely easy to mod. It may have taken some time to track down a value, but once the location of said value is known, is it not easy enough to change it? Every game mod that is uploaded, with the exception of a few, has to have multiple flavours because they are easy to do - I really don't see your particular mod as being any different to that. Once you split up the download into the individual flavours, then it will most likely be accepted - if we didn't want it on the site, then we wouldn't have put it on changes required for such small technical reasons, and it would have been rejected in the first round.
I think that once that change is made, the mod will prove to be quite popular, and will share the same high quality and high level of work as the rest of the downloads here. Just don't be too disheartened becuase this site is "pickier" than others which don't have any approval process at all - think of us like the App Store people for the iPhone, and think how many iFart apps there would be without them.