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One horse disagreer of the Apocalypse
#1901 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 8:51 AM
To all the people hating on rabbitholes, tell me, how on earth could you have *not* had rabbitholes in TS3? We've all complained how empty parties and clubs are, how in dickens name do you expect to get 30 kids in a classroom, or 700 in the assembly hall, or 100 in an open plan office in that huge office block? Rabbit holes were the only hope they had of preserving any illusion of a thriving town.

"You can do refraction by raymarching through the depth buffer" (c. Reddeyfish 2017)
Lab Assistant
#1902 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 9:35 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inge Jones
Rabbit holes were the only hope they had of preserving any illusion of a thriving town.
You're absolutely right. Rabbit holes are certainly a practical and sensible solution, and I like them for that. What has annoyed me to no end since 2009 is:
  • The lack of a rabbit hole editor tool. I want to be able to choose their look. What disgusted me is that new shiny RH became an asset for the store worlds.
  • A proper OFB system ( and early in the game) to free my Sims from the grocery, bookshop, restaurant and spa RH.

Then, to some extent, I can't completely dissociate my dislike of the RH from the fact that I consider the career system in TS3 a big mess of poor, cheap and inconsistent design.
Mad Poster
#1903 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 10:00 AM
I admit, my knowledge of TS3 comes from half an hour of playing on my sister's PS3 and reading comments, but from what I've read, rabbit holes weren't just for places that would have hundreds of Sims, but also for things like restaurants and gyms and shops and so on. Which is ridiculous. If my Sims in TS2 can go out to dinner and I can see them and order their food and have them flirt at the table, then they shouldn't be vanishing into a hole for several hours in a more advanced game.
One horse disagreer of the Apocalypse
#1904 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 10:23 AM
But in TS2 the only sims that were actually instantiated were the ones on the current lot. They could have up to 30 sims all dancing in a club, and still have far less than are being processed than in a typical ts3 world (albeit some in sleep loops but all the same they are being monitored by the game engine for time to wake up and go to work etc). If you make all the shops open that immediately causes one more sim per register, and probably at least one more fellow customer to make it feel right. And they have to be on standby not in sleep loops.

"You can do refraction by raymarching through the depth buffer" (c. Reddeyfish 2017)
Lab Assistant
#1905 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 10:51 AM Last edited by bellatrixclovis : 18th Aug 2013 at 10:55 AM. Reason: typo and misc
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inge Jones
If you make all the shops open that immediately causes one more sim per register, and probably at least one more fellow customer to make it feel right. And they have to be on standby not in sleep loops.
I've always been wondering if the decision to open the world wasn't too ambitious for 2009 or if the studio just failed to design it correctly.

Anyhow, I could have accepted half-solutions like what we'll have in Into the Future: pedestals and shopping without clerk. Self-scan shopping and self-pay registers/check-out have been fairly common in my area for many years now. I never really understood why they never used that trick to give us the grocery, bookshop and spa. I haven't played Superstar for a long time, but weren't the spa items (mud bath, steam bath...) in studio town based upon some auto-pay system? That would have left only the restaurant experience to design with NPCs.

I think that one of the big (as in HUGE) flaw of TS3 is that what drives a lot of design decisions was to go for the "play-pretend something is happening" rather than create good simulation features:
  • Story progression is some kind of decorative background to the "incredibly thrilling" life of the active Sims, and not at all the simulation of a small society living in the neighborhood.
  • We got 9 preset rigid types of bars/clubs/lounges instead of 1 nightlife community lot type but where we can decide everything depending on what objects we place an it and how we configure them through a shift-click menu (opening/closing hours, who is the mixologist and what is its outfit, what drinks/food are sold and at what price...)
  • There are many many more example of similar choices to go for many instead of good.

Too often, they decided to create a lot of fluff (numerous roles Sims & NPC) instead of being more economical & performance-effective. How many different types of show-time venues, each generating a proprietor? How many types of registers when a shift-click menu -> decide what is sold there was possible?

The whole game lacks vision in term of performance vs. gameplay value. Sometimes I really wonder if they play the game, and if they do, how do they play it?
Inventor
#1906 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 11:08 AM
But those sims that aren't around are just idle. I turned the settings up a couple of times and watched the Clavell house from across the street. They just stood in their living room doing NOTHING. Not even idle actions or talking. They just stood there. For hours. Are they processing their sheer existence?

Shy, Clumsy, Insane, Artistic, Hopeless Romantic, Cat Person, Supernatural Fan

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Instructor
#1907 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 11:39 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inge Jones
To all the people hating on rabbitholes, tell me, how on earth could you have *not* had rabbitholes in TS3? We've all complained how empty parties and clubs are, how in dickens name do you expect to get 30 kids in a classroom, or 700 in the assembly hall, or 100 in an open plan office in that huge office block? Rabbit holes were the only hope they had of preserving any illusion of a thriving town.


Do you think it might be safe to say that it may not be an entirely open neighbourhood for the Sims 4? Looking at the screenshot with the UI it appears to be a backdrop of sorts. In some screenshots houses and nearby areas appear to be there. My guess is a smaller portion of the neighbourhood might be playable? Like a small map of residential areas?

I honestly think we'll be getting open establishments in Sims 4 (besides work/school). They may have had to put in limitations for a fully open neighbourhood if that is the case.

Love does not consist of two people looking at each other, but of looking together in the right direction. - Antoine de Exupery
Mad Poster
#1908 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 12:38 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tempscire
I dunno...the ceiling height looks tall to me relative to the size of the furniture (and therefore the corresponding size of the Sims who would use it). Imagine a Sim standing next to one of those windows. There'd be a huge amount of space between their head and the ceiling, assuming a Sim's height is not greater than the height of that window, especially if it's low-hung.

Also, not that this is a good indicator, but in a larger version of that image, you can see that the ceiling light's support doesn't seem to extend all the way to where the ceiling would be (but they've botched ceiling lights like that before, so...).



Ok. Did a size comparison, and it does appear to be higher than the wall of the room below.

Test Subject
#1909 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 1:18 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by crocobaura
Ok. Did a size comparison, and it does appear to be higher than the wall of the room below.


Clearer photo

(Sorry for the watermark)
Lab Assistant
#1910 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 1:46 PM
Well the Danish magazine "gameplay" is out for subscribers and it also has a Sims 4 feature.

There's not much new that hasn't been seen already, the screenshots all look pretty familiar, well, maybe except the one from the gym with the new treadmills, but there are a few clarifications and minor tidbits.

For example there's an example of emotion furniture in a poster of a Sim version of Mr. T placed in a gym that increases a Sim's inspiration when working out, or the obvious one with candles and similar in the bedroom to give a romantic boost.

The Build mode is also clarified a bit. It is still possible to build a home wall by wall like in the previous games. But once you make a room, you can grab the entire room, furniture and all, and move it around like one big object. That's what the highlight lines on the screenshots mean. "Grab entire room."

There's also something about the sound design, which I haven't seen mentioned yet. The game has over half a million sound files. Also the sound system has gotten a technical overhaul to allow sound to have a direction, so a Sim with his back facing the camera will sound a little muffled when he speaks, or a stereo being blocked by walls and sounding different depending on the shape of the room. Basically, we have acoustics.

And the answer to the usual silly bit that gameplay always asks is... To make the sounds for a Sim playing an instrument badly, in this case the violin, they ask the professional musicians to swap hands and try to play. Clever.

Well that's pretty much it. There's some concept art in black and white there, too, looks like The Sims 4 is going for a bit of idealized Southern USA feel here.
One horse disagreer of the Apocalypse
#1911 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 2:14 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by QueenJimmyIV
But those sims that aren't around are just idle.


Many of them are idle of animation and interaction, but they are still being processed, checked for places they should be at regular intervals, polled to see if they are candidates for visiting various community lots. There is some activity on most large community lots.

"You can do refraction by raymarching through the depth buffer" (c. Reddeyfish 2017)
Forum Resident
#1912 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 2:31 PM
My main concern with all this emphasis on "emotions" is that traits are going to be downplayed in this iteration of the Sims thereby reducing the uniqueness of an individual Sim. I don't want to see all sad Sims act the same when they're sad or angry or [enter emotion here].

Hopefully the trait system has been deepened beyond TS3 so that we can have truly individual Sim and my shy, neurotic, neat freak Sim will act much differently when sad than my sociable, vain, mean-spirited Sim.
Theorist
#1913 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 2:42 PM
I don't understand why there is 3 different versions of the magazine out there...Two of which have exclusives that the english version doesn't even highlight.

And back to the emotions and traits thing, I feel like if they took the time to do half a million sounds and set up detailed acoustics then I'm sure that they have really enhanced the system of emotions and traits. We must remember the main feauture they focused on was the sims themselves, so everything from cas to emotions. I think it'll be like a mean spirited sim that dislikes children when sad will go and football kick their child out the window...while a nice and family oriented sim when said will cry and go to their children for comfort. Or even a aggrivated artist when angry sim will go paint a sharp edged masterpiece. Or a flirty charasmatic sim when angry will go find someone to have angry meaningless woohoo!
Mad Poster
#1914 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 2:42 PM
When they talk about the ikea like catalog. I wish sims could actually assemble the furniture and then we can watch their emotions when they noticed the last screw is missing.
Mad Poster
Original Poster
#1915 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 2:45 PM
I'd like a feature like that, actually, on select furniture types. The errors could make for some pretty unique furniture.

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Scholar
#1916 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 2:46 PM
Having some DIY items for handy Sims to amuse themselves with could be entertaining. But I think it would take an awfully long time to decorate a house if all furnishings came flat-packed.
Lab Assistant
#1917 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 2:49 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by TMBrandon
I don't understand why there is 3 different versions of the magazine out there...Two of which have exclusives that the english version doesn't even highlight.

That one, I think I can answer, actually. The Danish magazine mentions that EA held a press day where the different designers, programmers, and PR people all presented bit and pieces of the game, highlighting the parts they know the most about.

So you have a whole day, and 4-6 pages to fill, half of those pages with screenshots from the press kit. That means prioritizing and different people will prioritize different bits. So, gameplay publicized their talk with the sound guy, for instance, while other magazines chose to focus on different parts of the game.

Gameplay traditionally ask the oddball questions and look at things other people might not. They also mention the gameplay demo starting off with a Sim dying from rage, and Grant Rodeik remaking that he probably should have reset the demo BEFORE showing it off to the press. I like that part, because it such a The Sims moment.
Theorist
#1918 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 3:00 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by McNum
That one, I think I can answer, actually. The Danish magazine mentions that EA held a press day where the different designers, programmers, and PR people all presented bit and pieces of the game, highlighting the parts they know the most about.

So you have a whole day, and 4-6 pages to fill, half of those pages with screenshots from the press kit. That means prioritizing and different people will prioritize different bits. So, gameplay publicized their talk with the sound guy, for instance, while other magazines chose to focus on different parts of the game.

Gameplay traditionally ask the oddball questions and look at things other people might not. They also mention the gameplay demo starting off with a Sim dying from rage, and Grant Rodeik remaking that he probably should have reset the demo BEFORE showing it off to the press. I like that part, because it such a The Sims moment.

Never knew that, I thought it was just one press day and everything was translated for other languages...Are there any other interesting screenshots or mentions of anything?
Instructor
#1919 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 3:01 PM
Please share more, McNum.
Field Researcher
#1920 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 3:06 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by ani_
This is annoying me about simsvip currently. If they are now in bed with EA, their slogan "latest news and updates" should be changed to "just another site releasing news approved by EA". I used to look at them as a site that brings us really new news before it's official, now I fear they will just bring us news after it's stamped OK by their new masters so they are not kicked out of EA's friends list.


I get that they have to kiss EA's ass, but it's really annoying that they post literally nothing about anything that's leaked. And the whole PK situation and how they got ahold of it but kept it for eight months was never explained and that still irks me, so I really have about no trust in them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by McNum
The Build mode is also clarified a bit. It is still possible to build a home wall by wall like in the previous games. But once you make a room, you can grab the entire room, furniture and all, and move it around like one big object. That's what the highlight lines on the screenshots mean. "Grab entire room."

There's also something about the sound design, which I haven't seen mentioned yet. The game has over half a million sound files. Also the sound system has gotten a technical overhaul to allow sound to have a direction, so a Sim with his back facing the camera will sound a little muffled when he speaks, or a stereo being blocked by walls and sounding different depending on the shape of the room. Basically, we have acoustics.


I don't get why people thought Build Mode was completely destroyed, because even in the article it said you can still build as complex as before (I'm paraphrasing, but it was similar). I love the idea that you can move the room in one click; I've often built a room on the wrong side of the house, or wished I could flip it around.

The sound sounds really cool. I'm not trying to bash TS3 for the five thousandth time, but there's something about the way they talk that honestly bugs me. It's just so odd and unnatural.

From what we've heard and seen so far from TS4, I feel like the developers actually had fun designing the game and actually put effort into it, whereas with TS3 I felt like they just kinda threw together something without putting any additional details into it and more or less thought they'll buy it anyway.


edit; Is there anyway to find the Gameplay article scans?
Mad Poster
Original Poster
#1921 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 3:19 PM
I read that part of the article - I saw nothing about a wall tool. What WAS said, however, is that it's possible to create homes of the same caliber, not that the game has both preset rooms for absolute beginners + lazies, and more complex tools for more intricate builds. That sounds more like advertising than truth - unless I can have obscure and stupid looking walls, no, builds are not and will not be as complex. That's just the nature of removing certain freedoms.

People are upset for a reason. Unless things are clearly written out (Like EA, still, not saying Into The Future was the last expansion), we have no reason to automatically assume anything. The article says nothing about previous tools existing, but focuses on the the new tools and what they're capable off. The man speaking (at that point, I'm not sure if it's Ryan) says players found it to be too hard, and we know EA isn't a fan of alternatives. Like we argued before. It's quite possible that the Wall tool has been removed in favor of blocks, which, as we've said and fear before, will completely remove a major chunk of fans.

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Lab Assistant
#1922 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 3:22 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by TMBrandon
Never knew that, I thought it was just one press day and everything was translated for other languages...Are there any other interesting screenshots or mentions of anything?

It's told as seven anectdotes from people on the The Sims 4 team.

Lyndsay Pearson mentions her first Sim died in a fire while making breakfast in The Sims 1, which is what got her hooked on the game. She also highlights the Sims Community that surrounds the game as a major part of the series' success and that she hopes to read many new stories about how people play Sims 4 when it's out.

Albert Truong talks about the difficulties of transitioning sketches to 3D models, like how it's tricky to make an animation where a Sim touches its own face due to how malleable a Sim's face is. Also shows off some concept art, in black and white, of the Southern US style areas.

Jill Johnson, after getting the OK from a PR guy, shows off Create-a-Sim, which is pretty much what we've seen. You can grab and pull parts of a Sim's body to change it, going from subtle to Dumbo ears.

Goopy Rossi talks animations. How he's recorded people in the office to get a feel for how people do things. The example given being that if two Sims are talking and a third joins in, they'll just slightly rotate their upper bodies to include the third Sim, but if a fourth joins, they'll shift positions to include that Sim. Also he has a plea for us: Don't use the fast forward button TOO much as the animations are really neat.

The Build Mode stuff I mentioned comes from Aaron Houts. In Sims 4 we are still only able to make straight or diagonal walls, though. The whole "move an entire room" thing isn't realistic, but in this case, user experience trumped realism. Also, just caught this one: "...the three possible floors of the house...". So, buildings are three floors tall in The Sims 4. Isn't that one lower than Sims 3?

Grant Roderik talks Sim emotions, like how different emotions can give new options or block out others. Like a depressed Sim wont be able to flirt, but may make an awesome painting. That kind of thing.

And finally, Robi Kauker talks sound design. He mentions that it takes about a month for the voice actors to be able to speak a convincing Simlish, and that while the Sims may use the same words for certain things, the tone and pronunciation will change depending on emotional state. Which is where a lot of the 500.000 sound files come from. Very subtle variations of the same lines in Simlish.

That's pretty much the gist of it. I'm not entirely sure how much of that is NEW new, but that's how they did it.
Instructor
#1923 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 3:30 PM
So... no curved walls...? BASHGDAGDGDAGJDMKOPJITJGUHUHHMNVURASOKSOKF

:P
Lab Assistant
#1924 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 3:30 PM
Personally, I hope they don't screw up the talk of making the sims themselves more "real." It's an interesting concept to make them more individual and not rely as much on the human imagination.

However, but the problem of the open world/rabbit holes, wouldn't the solution be to combine the elements of ts2 and 3? Like, instead of only having one lot or the entire town to control at a time, only a few block radius of the active house (with the rest of the town not loaded, but if you were to go there it would more slowly be loaded) would be opened up, along with whatever restaurants/shops/venues open. It'd be like having a particularly small town in TS3, but the rest of the town exists, it's just not a processing priority.

Does that make sense?

Whatever. Reading this thread is exciting, but I can't help but feel nervous that I'll ultimately be disappointed by this marketing.

That was not helpful, funny, or love!
Forum Resident
#1925 Old 18th Aug 2013 at 3:45 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vss2eip
So... no curved walls...? BASHGDAGDGDAGJDMKOPJITJGUHUHHMNVURASOKSOKF

:P


blasphemy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!11
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