Replies: 21 (Who?), Viewed: 4046 times.
Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#1 Old 5th Sep 2016 at 9:42 AM Last edited by Aspersim : 6th Sep 2016 at 8:13 PM.
Default An Easy Way To Make A Custom Neighborhood Photo Without No Mods
Here Is a Link to the older thread http://modthesims.info/t/398295

first, I have not attended in a vary long while but I came up with this solution but I think I am a bit late on the draw board. I browsed the internet for this and found one thread that contained download links but this process is without no hacks or mods involved. ALWAYS BACK UP HOODS


To Start what I discovered all on my own today was this.


FIRST THING
1: close all screens, then goto control panel if using windows XP, or windows 7 for example. By clicking windows logo,in the bottom left of the screen once inside control panel goto to top and click view then large icons if you need to.

2: goto folder options
once the folder options screens comes up click view and uncheck "Hide Extensions For Known File Types" once this is de-checked your good to go in these instructions

3: Take A Photo In The Sims 2 Game Or Neighborhood screen.

4: Exit Game

5: : Open Up My Documents

6:goto "EA Games\The Sims 2\Storytelling"

7: move Screenshot or Snapshop. bmp image file into your custom neighborhood folder ["N004 for example"]

8: right click on file, then select copy, right click again in, white area then click paste from the menu.


9: find the photo file Screenshot or Snapshot file.
[the file you just copied and pasted into the "N004 Folder"


10: delete the original photo called "N004_Neighborhood.png" and make the new photo the same name as the old neighborhood photo.
"N004_Neighborhood.png"

11: rename the new photo you've just took for your new neighborhood to this. Including the period, but not the quotes.

12: then after you change its name, then copy it again and

13: then paste it to the Neighborhoods main "EA Games\The Sims 2\Neighborhoods"
folder and then rename the photo file to this without quotes.
"N004_Neighborhood.reia"


and you should get a message saying are you sure and click yes

14: if your updating a maxis neighborhoods then delete the N001_Neighborhood.reia inside the "N001" folder (example)


This worked for me and I have detected no issues.

that's it for this tutorial and if your followed these instructions carefully you should be able to do your own file hack for the picture to show up on screen.
I wanted to do this for the videos but found out this instead. without no mod or additional Custom Content.

(edit)
Don't ever delete neighborhood manager or you could delete all your neighborhood's thumbnails and I just remembered this from a long time ago leave it set aside the reia files

It is safe to leave that file alone at all times, the reia file works with all the image files and the neighborhood manager file I think that is how it is programmed, not sure
to reset your all your neighborhoods just delete the EA Games folder inside "My Documents" only then start your sims 2 game. hope I helped

there is also this way to change the photo but I am not sure if it works: https://answers.yahoo.com/question/...01235722AAuaTFr
Advertisement
Trainee Moderator
staff: trainee moderator
#2 Old 5th Sep 2016 at 8:05 PM Last edited by Jawusa : 5th Sep 2016 at 8:37 PM.
How about converting .gif files to .reia files? Then it would be an animated preview picture of the neighborhood -- like the ones made by EA!
Thanks for the helpful research!

Catalogue of Custom Neighborhoods for TS2
All Hood Building Group neighborhoods are available here
Want to get rid of EA's sims in neighborhoods? Check out my Clean and Empty Steatlh Hoods and Clean and Empty Neighborhood Templates
My Simblr
Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#3 Old 5th Sep 2016 at 10:12 PM Last edited by Aspersim : 5th Sep 2016 at 10:40 PM.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jawusa
How about converting .gif files to .reia files? Then it would be an animated preview picture of the neighborhood -- like the ones made by EA!
Thanks for the helpful research!


I already tried to convert the video files recorded in the sims 2 game to the reia files just like in the Maxis neighborhoods but I got a blank white screen instead of a moving picture. so I decided to go try converting the second image file to a .reia file and placed the file right in the main neighborhood's folder and I managed to get my new photo for my custom neighborhood. That is how I discovered this. I also tried to have 2 reia files both in and out of the neighborhood N004 folder and I still got a blank white screen when trying to do a workaround of the moving picture.
Mean, mean stride
retired moderator
#4 Old 6th Sep 2016 at 9:15 AM
@Aspersim
It's unnecessary to replace the .reia file with a .png file- just delete the .reia file altogether.

The .reia file is actually a RIFF file which contains video. Not much seems to be known about how to replace these files, although I've spent a lot of time over the years trying! This about sums it up:
http://www.moreawesomethanyou.com/s...p?topic=1655.20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Talysman
I copied the .reia file to the appropriate neighborhoods. The animated buttons appeared for those neighborhoods; I'd hesitate to call them "movies", because they're more like really big animated GIFs. The animations were clearly for the original hoods, not the ones I created. Clicking on one of the buttons popped up the info for that neighborhood, with the PNG graphic I'd created. However, entering a hood did not trigger the flyover cam sequence.

Next, I peered inside a .reia file. The header identifies the file format as RIFF (Resource Interchange File Format), one of the many descendants of IFF. Specifically, it's the one Microsoft created for WAV and AVI files. I saw at least one chunk labeled "frameP", which makes sense if it's a video wrapper.

Conclusion: the flyover cam sequence is not part of the .reia file, but is hardcoded and linked to the names of the EAxis hoods. The .reia file is just an unexplored video format.

I will choose a path that's clear- I will choose free will
-RUSH
Simpeople and Me Archive- -11Dots Archive- My Sims World Archive
If you are looking for files from old websites the Internet Archive is your best friend.
The Great AntiJen
retired moderator
#5 Old 6th Sep 2016 at 11:06 AM
One of the odd things about the animated flyovers is that if you name your custom neighbourhood say Pleasantview, you get the flyover for Pleasantview when you enter the hood. There are several names that do this including Sedona though I can't remember the rest. There's a list somewhere.

I no longer come over to MTS very often but if you would like to ask me a question then you can find me on tumblr or my own site tflc. TFLC has an archive of all my CC downloads.
I'm here on tumblr and my site, tflc
Mean, mean stride
retired moderator
#6 Old 6th Sep 2016 at 11:43 AM
Some that work:

To be clear though, the neighbourhood flyover is linked to the neighbourhood name, and has nothing to do with the .reia file.

I will choose a path that's clear- I will choose free will
-RUSH
Simpeople and Me Archive- -11Dots Archive- My Sims World Archive
If you are looking for files from old websites the Internet Archive is your best friend.
Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#7 Old 6th Sep 2016 at 2:45 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by simsample
@Aspersim
It's unnecessary to replace the .reia file with a .png file- just delete the .reia file altogether.

The .reia file is actually a RIFF file which contains video. Not much seems to be known about how to replace these files, although I've spent a lot of time over the years trying! This about sums it up:
http://www.moreawesomethanyou.com/s...p?topic=1655.20

Conclusion: the flyover cam sequence is not part of the .reia file, but is hardcoded and linked to the names of the EAxis hoods. The .reia file is just an unexplored video format.


I believe that the "Neighborhood manager" file is linked to the videos, and all the photos so I just made an edit so that everyone leaves it alone
my guess is to somehow decode the "neighborhood manager" file but I don't know how to do that
Scholar
#8 Old 6th Sep 2016 at 4:11 PM
Wait the flyover happens when you name your 'hood one of those? Not the actual land itself?

"Oh look, my grandchild is now an elder. They grow up so fast. Gee, I wonder when I'll finally graduate college." Sims 2
The Great AntiJen
retired moderator
#9 Old 6th Sep 2016 at 6:38 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by DezzyBoo
Wait the flyover happens when you name your 'hood one of those? Not the actual land itself?

Yes, that's right. Doesn't usually fit your new neighbourhood though. Sedona works best for Little Carping but that's because of its layout. I changed it back because I couldn't bear to have the neighbourhood called Sedona in the menu.

I don't think we ever worked out how to do the reia files though.

I no longer come over to MTS very often but if you would like to ask me a question then you can find me on tumblr or my own site tflc. TFLC has an archive of all my CC downloads.
I'm here on tumblr and my site, tflc
Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#10 Old 6th Sep 2016 at 6:46 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jawusa
How about converting .gif files to .reia files? Then it would be an animated preview picture of the neighborhood -- like the ones made by EA!
Thanks for the helpful research!


if your considering a moving gif file then probably so, but I can't see how a straight image converting into a moving picture. but maybe a hacked .gif file/video but I am not an expert on files as I've only done surface programming and nothing that deep. I don't know hashes.

I just found out today that their are more then just straight image gif files sorry for the late response @Jawusa
Trainee Moderator
staff: trainee moderator
#11 Old 6th Sep 2016 at 6:52 PM
Yes, that's what I meant. Animated .gif pictures.
If we manage to convert such an image file into a .reia file, maybe it will work.

Catalogue of Custom Neighborhoods for TS2
All Hood Building Group neighborhoods are available here
Want to get rid of EA's sims in neighborhoods? Check out my Clean and Empty Steatlh Hoods and Clean and Empty Neighborhood Templates
My Simblr
Mad Poster
#12 Old 6th Sep 2016 at 7:19 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by simsample
@Aspersim
It's unnecessary to replace the .reia file with a .png file- just delete the .reia file altogether.

The .reia file is actually a RIFF file which contains video. Not much seems to be known about how to replace these files, although I've spent a lot of time over the years trying! This about sums it up:
http://www.moreawesomethanyou.com/s...p?topic=1655.20


based on that info, i would take a guess that it's actually video stream (no audio). the filesize itself seems to corrobate - the only gifs ive seen that filesize are either high rseslution or long in length, or both. meanwhile, a small, co mpressed viddoe file can easily be 5 mb

sorry abot the sudden typing crap my arthritis flared up on me

I'm secretly a Bulbasaur. | Formerly known as ihatemandatoryregister

Usually hanging out in Sim Crafters these days. | Looking for SimWardrobe's mods? | Or Dizzy's? | Faiuwle/rufio's too! | smorbie1's Chris Hatch archives | Welcome to Oakbrook.
Mean, mean stride
retired moderator
#13 Old 6th Sep 2016 at 8:13 PM
Yes, it is video but I don't know of anyone who's managed to decode it yet. I've spent a long time on this myself in the past, experimenting with adding file headers to various format video files, without any success.

I will choose a path that's clear- I will choose free will
-RUSH
Simpeople and Me Archive- -11Dots Archive- My Sims World Archive
If you are looking for files from old websites the Internet Archive is your best friend.
Mad Poster
#14 Old 6th Sep 2016 at 8:38 PM
i cracked it open in a hex editor, no readable text aside from 'reiahead' at the beginning, granted i didnt expect anything but sometimes yo can glean a bit of info from that

i ran it through https://www.toolsley.com/file.html and it came up as RIFF (little-endian) data

I'm secretly a Bulbasaur. | Formerly known as ihatemandatoryregister

Usually hanging out in Sim Crafters these days. | Looking for SimWardrobe's mods? | Or Dizzy's? | Faiuwle/rufio's too! | smorbie1's Chris Hatch archives | Welcome to Oakbrook.
Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#15 Old 6th Sep 2016 at 8:45 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by ihatemandatoryregister
i cracked it open in a hex editor, no readable text aside from 'reiahead' at the beginning, granted i didnt expect anything but sometimes yo can glean a bit of info from that

i ran it through https://www.toolsley.com/file.html and it came up as RIFF (little-endian) data


there has got to be a way by editing the neighborhood manager file, but you never know it could either take one person or a whole army to add the code into neighborhood manager. I have a good feeling we are all on to something special.

I am no expert programmer but I do know that when the Neighborhood manager file is missing, all the thumbnails are missing. So somehow we must figure out a way to input the data probally threw notepad or some type of hacking program or open the Neighborhood manager in SimPE. Hmmm

but with coding one mistake can cause things to mess up but I still think we are all getting warmmer
Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#16 Old 7th Sep 2016 at 12:02 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aspersim
there has got to be a way by editing the neighborhood manager file, but you never know it could either take one person or a whole army to add the code into neighborhood manager. I have a good feeling we are all on to something special.

I am no expert programmer but I do know that when the Neighborhood manager file is missing, all the thumbnails are missing. So somehow we must figure out a way to input the data probally threw notepad or some type of hacking program or open the Neighborhood manager in SimPE. Hmmm

but with coding one mistake can cause things to mess up but I still think we are all getting warmmer


Ok I'm back I tried to do this myself and be the hero and failed, I just don't know enough about inner coding of the sims 2, but I know it is possible, ok so we already got tutorial for a custom photo thanks what I discovered earlier now all we need is someone with more knowledge of the both the game and SimPE if you want to give this a shot yourself and try to get a video to display in the main menu here is the link to download SimPE
Top Secret Researcher
#17 Old 25th Dec 2019 at 10:24 PM
Sorry for necroing but I've started research on this. From what I've seen data is structured by frames and is awfully similar to Dxa video format, which is generally used for video game cutscenes and uses zlib compression. However it seems to have some form of EA compression on top of it which will really make it hard to extract any data. I'm working and experimenting right now and will update you if there's any progress but I doubt it.

Another thing, I've noticed a pattern in the header of the video file (not reia or RIFF header but the actual video header) and if I manage to find a video format that has a matching header I'll probably be lucky. But there's a high chance all of this is EA proprietary. For all we know it might also be that .mov format thing that they use for game intro... this actually also gives me the idea to compare it to that!
Mad Poster
#18 Old 25th Dec 2019 at 11:14 PM
@mixa97sr - If you've not seen it, here might be a place to start: https://wiki.multimedia.cx/index.php/DXA

I'm secretly a Bulbasaur. | Formerly known as ihatemandatoryregister

Usually hanging out in Sim Crafters these days. | Looking for SimWardrobe's mods? | Or Dizzy's? | Faiuwle/rufio's too! | smorbie1's Chris Hatch archives | Welcome to Oakbrook.
Top Secret Researcher
#19 Old 26th Dec 2019 at 2:18 AM Last edited by mixa97sr : 26th Dec 2019 at 2:53 AM.
I've seen it, but thanks :D. Header is different to what DXA file is, but maybe it's under some sort of compression, EA side or other? Anyways, I'll keep looking into it, for now I've seen differences from EP and Base game nhood flybys, while first 12 bytes of header are always the same for all flybys and last 4 are always different for every flyby. Middle 8 bytes are different for base game and EPs... it's quite interesting. Still haven't snooped around .mov file. Will update on this tomorrow.

EDIT: I somewhat CRACKED the header. It's structure goes like this:

- most likely version of the file format, always '1'
- Width of the video, 128px
- Height of the video, 128px
- Some form of flag? for EP's it's 1000000, for base game it's 10
- Another form of flag? for EP's it's 33333, for base game it's 1
- Number of frames of the video

Each of these is 4 bytes long. I hope this helps in search of what video format this is, unless it's a proprietary one which then makes this info, well... useless.

EDIT, EDIT:
It turns out that the two values I did not know what they were are framerate numerator and denominator (in that order). EP's have 1000000/33333 = 30 FPS while base game only has 10/1 = 10 FPS
Top Secret Researcher
#20 Old 26th Dec 2019 at 9:19 PM
At this point I'll accept that it's just an EA proprietary file ONLY used for sims 2 main menu video thumbnail... It's header is so special and there's 0 documentation about it, even among all the EA video formats.

I will try few more things but most likely this is... the end of the road with reia files.
Test Subject
#21 Old 13th Jan 2020 at 9:07 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by mixa97sr
ONLY used for sims 2 main menu video thumbnail.

The loading screen background videos (i.e. Neighborhood/Lot/CAS) also use this format. These are available at [base game]\TSData\Res\UI\ui.package, with type ID (0x00000000), under group ID (0x499DB772) and are incorrectly tagged as UI data.
Test Subject
#22 Old 28th Mar 2020 at 9:31 PM
Anything new guys?
Back to top