Originally Posted by didyouevenmakeasound
This thread has made me reinstall the game lol. I love playing urban sprawls but can never get the motivation to keep it up.
This is my problem too, kind of... Suburbia bores me, and in the distant past I already played a medieval/victorian/magical neighborhood almost to exhaustion. I want to play a hyper-urban city and see how that goes, but even the process of getting it built in the first place is pretty daunting!
We lied about having cookies.
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You can also make detached houses feel more urban by shrinking the lot size to be 1 tile wide and/or deep. This is also very useful for smaller commercial buildings especially if you're going for say the late 1800s early 1900s North American town/city centre style. Using portals you can actually created 'roadless' lots with custom lane-ways. Not entirely sure if how a carpool fares with a service vehicle parked there though, but eh my play style rarely needs them, especially in compact housing where cleaning and gardening are minimal. You can get some really cute 3 bedroom houses on a 10x15 lot since the road takes up 5x10 tiles for a lane with pedestrian space on each side. I usually make the houses on the other side be 10x20 tiles of buildable space, 5x10 be the shared road allowance, and the remaining mandated 5x10 be blocked by an invisible fence as the neighbour's property. Slight issue with denser road grids is these become harder to fit, but they're really cozy feeling. It's funny the spacing of the houses are pretty standard for new Canadian development, except the roads would be 3 times as wide with way too much space for parking lol. The one way alleys where again inspired by Japan though.
The last photo of mine is a home business type lot ready to be shrunk and moved into place along with the other alleyway homes.
WowoW it's a badly hidden owo UwU Yeet skeet Idk what I'm doing
Originally Posted by didyouevenmakeasound
Actually, does anyone have any recommendations for good urban/city SC4s? I feel like often they're either too big or too small and I can never make my mind up about them, or I just overuse them.
Off the top of my head I can only really think of one SC4 template to suggest to you, but as RoxEllen suggested in post #24 using a semi-built up/decorated hood as a base to get things started is a honestly a really good idea. Starting from scratch for a big city is pretty daunting on your own. Which is why I agree with cord11; "the hardest part is the setup".
As well as the hood RoxEllen pointed, created by Glabeglarn, there is also the empty (except for very nicely arranged hood deco) Downtown makeover that JodelieJodelie shared on tumblr, here. It's nice because you can plop in your own lots however you see fit, but you will still definitely get a great city backdrop when taking screenshots.
Also, I quite like the hood here on MTS, Emerald Heights, as a starting point for a city. That hood does have sims in it but I think they did share an empty version as well. I have played a fair amount with that hood and over the course of time through fiddling with moving lots around and the help of hood deco, I have got a decent enough "urban jungle" feel going. Not perfect, but by far the best attempt at a city feel I think I've ever achieved in my simming life The hood is already good as is, but I think once you add hood deco skyscrapers it brings it more alive. One thing I don't love about Emerald Heights though is that inland it just sort of...ends. The area around the shore is great, but towards the hills the city just sort of abruptly stops. That's one thing that I find difficult about decorating cities; the outskirts.
Anyway, for a totally empty (except for trees and minor hood deco) SC4 template that I think would be good because of its many roads and grid layout, try Dullfielde by Ousmeo. The riverbanks with the embankment hood deco CC are quite nice and you could potentially build some attractive waterfront townhouses. There is perhaps maybe a bit too much water in this map for my liking, but I definitely think you could build a nice city here. Just remove most of the trees and fill each grid section up with a mix of community lots, apartments and the odd residential lot and, of course, lots of hood deco (my fav way to cheat making a hood feel fuller). Actually, I envisage a Uni subhood on this map rather than a huge bustling city, but I don't see myself embarking on a project like that anytime soon :P
Getting a bit more off topic and onto general suggestions now...
I have never been any good at city simulation type games, but I think games like Cities Skylines can be a good inspiration for The Sims. Sadly I can't play that game these days because my laptop is too piss weak to handle it, but I do enjoy watching youtube videos about it from time to time. Most of the youtubers I've watched for CS play it more for the decorating aspect rather than the gameplay. One "tip" I did learn from one youtuber was to get inspiration from real life --- by looking at google maps/google earth. Looking at aerial views of cities helps you get a sense for the scale and flow of a city. Going on a journey through street view is not only fun but helps you get a closer look at details. Maybe I'm weird for enjoying going on trips via google street view, but oh well lol. Also, if you google it you can find a sites/links that will plop you down in totally random places across the globe via street view. There's one that's specially geared to plop you down in particularly scenic locations, too. Just search something like "google maps/street view random generator/locations" or something like that. Also, if you want to do this on "hard mode", try out https://www.geoguessr.com/
My final suggestion is Greatcheesecakepersona's Hood Planner . I haven't actually got around to trying this program yet, but it seems really handy if you wanna quickly edit roads in your hoods. I've occasionally found that when decorating a city (or any hood, really) sometimes I'll be frustrated because the road layout is not cooperating with my vision. I imagine for a fairly flat hood, using Hood Planner would make changing up the road layouts easy as pie, you'd barely have to spend anytime in SimCity 4. If you wanted to add in hills and edit the terrain a lot though, yes, you probably would have to fiddle around in God Mode raising up mountains and such -- which I ain't got time for, even with the added assistance in planning roads via Hood Planner, lol. Also, there is the slight problem that SimCity 4 no longer wants to run on my laptop without immediately crashing, welp. So no SC4 template creating for me until I can actually be bothered troubleshooting that minor inconvience However, if Hood Planner can help anyone reading this thread to build a better hood, then my work here is done
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If you're brave enough to venture onto T$R, Stoneyville Metropolis by Wolfsim68 is a really large flat urban terrain with a grid pattern of roads round a central square. I've been using it for my Sim-free building 'hood for over 5 years now without any problems. Personally I've never had any problem with T$R (The Sims Resource) apart from the site usually being painfully slow. I only go there once or twice a year, so slowness isn't really a problem to me. I haven't posted a link because I know some people hate the site, but it should be easy enough to find with Google if you want it.
@HarVee I like your mosque in post #21 above. Did you build it yourself or download it somewhere?
I think that a vanilla Downtown (or a slightly modified one in my case) can give quite a bit of an urban jungle feel, as I think you can see in these pictures that Andrew got me to take when he did Jones's Outfit of the Day challenge:
(Jones's Outfit of the Day is a really fun and light-hearted challenge for Sims and Simmers alike, that I'd highly recommend, especially in this time of Real Life gloom and misery.)
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Originally Posted by AndrewGloria
@HarVee I like your mosque in post #21 above. Did you build it yourself or download it somewhere?)
Originally it was a download from here on MTS, but I had done a lot of rework to it. I needed a mosque to add a sense of authenticity to the Egyptian hood. What I did to it was I added custom tan brick walls that I made myself, redid the flooring with some floors I made myself, and did some changes to layout. It's the only lot in Nhw-Wr [Read: Nowhere] that is downloaded. Everything else is custom made by me for this hood.
Thanks to Flabaliki for the SC4 terrain, Criquette, CuriousB, PsychoSim, Slig , Delonariel and many others for their awesome creations !
Shotgunning bland cucumbers since 1974
Originally Posted by Aysarth
A good terrain for a city, especially a run down one, is Psychosim's Harbour. https://psychosim.livejournal.com/20443.html available plain or decorated.
You beat me to it !
I'm using that for the "Ruins Canal" (downtown) portion of my post-apocalypse neighborhood.
Pics are incomplete as I'm still building it.
Last pic is one of my independent teens living in the "Fallout" ('dirt' shopping hood).
" Inama Nushif "
Originally Posted by TadOlson
I've been installing some build sets from here that can allow me to build decaying,run-down and abandoned buildings to create that urban look in my own downtown when my BACC gets that far and I can create a decaying building in my town even before it becomes a city as abandoned buildings can show up in smaller towns as well as big cities.There's all kinds of content here for creating that urban decay effect in a decaying downtown district that's going downhill into becoming a slum fast.
Pics or links ?
I have some from links from Psychosim, so any more I've missed ?
Thanks, I picked some up from Diovanlestat.
" Inama Nushif "
Originally Posted by HarVee
I do most of this already, except the fake floors. In my opinion fake buildings are better than fake floors.
I would also suggest making use of the alleyways, specifically the concrete ones with trash. Put down some hood deco cars in them and they look like people being forced to park in them.
I'm not sure what that rocks/ruins are in the upper right of the photo... but it looks intriguing.
" Inama Nushif "
I know nothing about Manhatten, but London is an ancient city and a modern city all at once. So it has buildings from the 16th century and buildings from the 21st. It is also mixed in population with rich and poor living side by side. So I believe, you first need to work out what your city is for, what has it been and does and who works there, then it's easier to fill it up with buildings. London is a trade city that originally built up around its rivers. No city is just tall skyscrapers, the cleaner has to live somewhere and has to have somewhere to go for food and entertainment that's affordable.
To Maxis downtown, I add more victorian buildings (red brick), mostly converted Factories (https://www.modthesims.info/browse....1&&tag=factory). This gives me the old historical feel I need but also allows for space for modernity (21st Century London loves converted factories). I like the textile factory (https://www.modthesims.info/d/28154...le-factory.html) because if I stick in a couple of Maxis sewing machines, the sweatshop business is back in action and Sims can go and labour and toil in real-time,
I build on smaller lots (Mary Lou) and make great use of Plasticbox backyard series (http://www.modthesims.info/browse.p...lane&gs=0&f=380) for playing as well as for decoration. The great thing about little lots is they give the crammed in feeling. Backdoor lane includes totally irrelevant things like parking lots, monuments, and newspaper kiosks that are a big part of my real life city, and are all playable by sims.
Then I go and dirty it up. I use Psychosim cars and objects (https://psychosim.livejournal.com/t...cars%20project), so some of my people can drive old cars, and Psychosims has a broken car that a sim mechanic can run a business with. When I add in MogHughson's "Decorative Parking spaces" (http://modthesims.info/d/330492/dec...ars-parked.html) and optional Park in Car Park, all around town, unknown sims park their old cars (like in sims 3) and presumably go off shopping and visiting. Now the city is becoming alive and dynamic. Not all city people can afford new cars. Psychosims specializes in grunge and city things and also has neighbourhood deco.
Then I add in some specially chosen lots from MTS and others. Big-ticket items by Zarathustra, on the crime side of town, Fisk's Bar (https://modthesims.info/d/569131/fisk-s-bar-no-cc.html) is a favourite. It's a corner lot, that's what makes it special, my real city has a ton of these. Items from Sunni from pre-pbk days, a ice-cream shop, a bank, an office, a mattress shop. Again, things that I expect to be able to see and use in my city. (http://www.sunni.us/community.htm) Some of Sunni's buildings work beautifully with other creators. The ice-cream shop can be used with Moghughson's "Appartments and Shopping" (https://www.modthesims.info/d/35260...e-same-lot.html) The bank is perfect for Kathy PCSims Banking Items.
I grab graffiti wherever I see it. Moocha-muses (https://moocha-muses.tumblr.com/tag...wnloads/page/3), Phaenoh (http://www.modthesims.info/d/362815...alk-chalk.html). Then I continue to add grunge and industrial decay from Cycionsue (https://www.thesimsresource.com/artists/Cyclonesue/) and Pixelhate (http://www.modthesims.info/m/26277) Both Pixelhate and Cycloinse specialise in urban decay. A few bits of neighbourhood deco, especially the bus system from Criquette (https://criquette-was-here.tumblr.com/downloads) add my own poorly built lots and I got a city.
What's nice, is you can continue to build your city with viaducts, canals, cranes, telephone wires, lighted signage and homeless squats. Most cities are covered in crane and building works are always in action. Right now I have no time for all of that and just downloaded Bigg City from Peni, which though small scale, give me that "I need to wash" feeling. I'm more interested in playables, so would then go on to add broken bathrooms and kitchens and grungefied furniture.
Originally Posted by simmer22
Well, there's plenty of more recent hospital stuff to find (been making and uploading quite a bit of it myself, because I noticed a lack of it when I started making stories with parts of it set in hospital environments), and there are a lot of hospital buildings people have made that can be used for either gameplay or neighborhood decoration. Chris Hatch made a hospital mod that could work for gameplay.
There's also been several sets uploaded with police/firehouse/hospital stuff converted from TS3 and TS4.
I guess if someone is after these kinds of things, posting in the WCIF section would be a good idea.
I've seen (and used) a few skateboard and bike poseboxes, which works well for storytelling purposes. Unfortunately there aren't a lot of ingame ways to make a sim move around (at least not in a somewhat controlled way) on a skateboard or bike. There's the NPC way using functions of the toy car and helicopter (which have some issues tied to them due to the NPC and moving around randomly), and driveable items like cars which have have limited functions and a limited range of movement.
I've found it's a heckuvalot easier to do storytelling with pictures than for instance making movies. In a picture you can use a deco bus or train, static poses, OMSPs, the Freezer clock, and all the other help you can find - while in movies you somehow have to make it seem like everything is moving. Not impossible, but I'd rather not have to deal with that. For actual working gameplay you're pretty much stuck with the options the game gives you, plus the odd cleverly made CC items that seem like they're doing something new but in reality are just reusing something deep within the game files.
I'll see what I can find, thanks for the tips.
Yeah I agree that it is easier to tell a story using pictures than movies. I wanted to film some stuff using The Sims 2 but animations were limited. Poseboxes are very handy. Sometimes you can use them in movies but you have to know what you're doing. JD (Jaydee) was the best machinima maker. She made that Helena video and a few others.
The downtown is in no way logical, with different and double street lights everywhere and houses cutting into each other. Still, I like the outcome...
It also looks kinda good in daylight....
A few more snapshots, some from the original, some from a Template ~ The original crashes 9 out of 10 times in neighborhood mode... :
Originally Posted by HarVee
What's that red sprial thingy? Some sort of amusement park ride?
It's Tatlins Tower by Lowedeus - but an amusement park sounds like a nice idea - It's a work in progress, where I'll see how much I can add before the downtown blows up into my face.
I think filling the space to the brim is really key for an urban feel, like the only green space should be planned parks or vertical gardens, even yards are scarce in the really developed downtowns.
I think brick, grafitti, hood deco aquaducts and skyscrapers really bring that vibe to the forefront. Lots and lots of apartment type buildings and warehouses too.