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Ferris State North Bond Hall
by BulldozerIvan Posted 19th Nov 2019 at 4:22 PM - Updated 9th Jun 2020 at 6:28 AM by BulldozerIvan : Eco Lifestyle update notes
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A lot of the dorms for Discover University strike me as being...off somehow. Probably because I never lived inside anything that looked like that.
Instead...I got to live on the campus of Ferris State for 4 years - 3 of them, in the Glenn C. Bond Hall complex.
Being a pretty old building with old-style, cold, institutional values in its architecture; Bond is considered a "luxury" hall to live in on that campus. "Luxury," in the sense that the rooms have an actual carpet in them. A very low-grade, even by cheap apartment standards carpet; but carpeting all the same. Which does make the rooms one step in value over and above various rooms in other residence halls on campus, where you have a stone tile floor and the rooms look like converted jail cells with ethernet ports.
So while a lot of girls on YouTube remake their soft, cushy college dorms into playable files, I would like to take you all back in time a little bit, by sharing this lot (which is now part of a fanmade stuff pack built around that same theme, see below)...
I could drag on; but why not tell your own stories with this download?
If you'd like to know almost every project I ever worked on while living in Bond, you can find links or articles here, here, here, here, and here.
I set this file up to resemble a truncated North Bond (South Bond and lobby not included, due to lack of sufficient tile space.) The file is actually a few suites shorter than the real building, due to lot size restrictions. It resembles North Bond in the mid-to-late-2000s, as I remember it. Since then, the hallway carpets have been updated. That ugly orange with a bleach stain on the second floor due to a failed effort to clean up a blood spill after two students got in a fight a few years before that; is now long gone in real life.
I modeled one room after Room 165, as it looked from May of 2007 until May of 2008. Another room looks like Room 207, as it looked from August of 2008 until May of 2009. Another room is Room 213, as it looked from August of 2009 until May of 2010. Finally, I made Hadley Mint's room from Sorbet, which is similar to my Room 213.
Back then, emo was everywhere on campus. To create a mood for North Bond (or most of Ferris) for the mid-2000s, I'd recommend searching for "The Answer" by Broken Sunday on YouTube. That song epitomizes campus life's mood at the time. In fact, Broken Sunday even performed at the sports complex one year. It was almost the end of their time together as a band, however. The collapse of MySpace as a top competitor for Facebook's ever-growing social monopoly resulted in them losing a lot of exposure rapidly, and also to the downfall of their ability to sell albums.
A similar band, Unlisted, suffered a similar fate a lot sooner. However, Unlisted's drummer Scotty Blankenship later went on to marry WGRD radio legend Jackie Green-Blankenship. So...I guess that all these local bands' downfall wasn't the worst possible thing. Still...with its local band legends gone, western Michigan lost a lot of its unique musical identity on the rock scene. With Broken Sunday having been disbanded, former lead singer Joe Cisler now operates his own independent music operation. He has a Facebook page for it, at the very least. On Instagram, I've been trying to get Within Temptation interested in covering "The Answer." But I won't hold my breath. Sharon's busy these days. Not Lauren Maybury of Chvrches levels of busy, mind you (Death Stranding, anyone?); but planning a European tour alongside Evanescence? Yeah. I won't hold my breath that she'll be contacting Joe. (Maybe I should've gone into music industry management instead of TV production?)
You'll notice that some of my screenshots look...very similar. Redundancy is quite common for North Bond. It's very pragmatic and institutional, caring little for genuine creativity in its architecture. It's about maximizing compact spacing for students. South Bond is even worse, with double housing to rooms. The first floor of South, however, is female-only housing. For those girls who just plain can't live next to men. North Bond is co-ed single housing on all floors, with same-sex suite arrangement being the only gender segregation.
The real Bond Hall
Bond is located on the west side of Ferris' campus, just west of an obelisk and roundabout (Bond Circle Drive) standing between Bond and what used to be the Center Ice Cafe. It has since gone through numerous name changes, as no one seems to really know what they want that building to be. It's been a cafeteria, and administrative building, and plenty of in-between. But for most of my time there, it was Center Ice. An a-la carte-style diner experience, unlike The Rock, which was more of an on-campus Old Country Buffet, but with far worse food.
Bond seems to form a sort of seagull shape, in which the central "bird" is its lobby. The two halls are its "wings." A weird sort of deformed quasi-seagull on the other side of the roundabout also exists, consisting of Puterbaugh and Henderson Halls and their central lobby.
North Bond is for single unit housing. The mattresses are a sort of blue cheap vinyl (or were when I was there) with uncomfortable springs. Very cheap frames for beds. There was a sort of "University Order" to put every room in before you left, that you'd find it in when you moved in. The desks were...very tiny, but still worth two Sim tiles. On those uncomfortable chairs, I found myself frequently having to pose weirdly, as there was only enough room to comfortably fit one leg in the leg area. My left leg had to lean against the desk drawers. Even though all I had was a Dell Inspiron 6000 laptop hand-me-down from my uncle made in 2004, which he originally used to run software for tracking probationers back when he was a probation officer, that little thing and its accessories easily took up most of my desk space. Not practical at all.
The blue lava lamps? I actually had a blue glitter lamp and a green lava lamp. I threw out the blue glitter lamp when its blue fluid turned clear, because I couldn't protect it from the sun enough. My green lava lamp was later destroyed by a "friend" who got careless with it.
The walls? Tough enough to crack your skull; but poorly-insulated enough that you could hear all your floormates' drama through the walls and ventilation system. Good luck getting rest before tomorrow's quiz when your neighbor three doors away is up at 3 AM, waking you up by having very loud sex with one of the Hmong girls from Canada that lives in South Bond and spends all her spare time either studying for pharmacy, watching Grey's Anatomy syndicated reruns, or sleeping around. And you can hear every weird noise through the walls! But the RAs only care if they're playing music past quiet hours, so...sucks to be you, and try not to fall asleep in class the next day.
The bathrooms? Pretty close to how I render them here. Except, the windows should be more centralized.
South Bond: All double housing. All-female housing on the first floor. Second and third floors are just like normal dorms everywhere else on campus.
In spite sharing a lobby, the two halls' cultures had a lot of differences. North Bond residents were usually more easygoing, and tended to be more conservative. South Bond...were mostly liberal snowflakes. And if you weren't as NPC as they were on their political views...they could get nasty with you pretty quickly! Groupthink, or else! The worst of North Bond? You only really saw their bad side if they got drunk. Which...I did sometimes have to deal with a few drunks. South Bond? They'd destroy your dry erase board or smash the fire extinguisher case glass just for the hell of it; or because they don't like your views on something. (Or grossly misunderstand, and aren't interested in being corrected, because they'd rather virtue signal and cause a scene to humiliate you than be factually accurate.)
Bond Lobby: This had bathrooms, a front desk, a computer lab, a meeting room (that the Hmong girls hijacked more often than not), and a TV / game room area. The TVs were usually being hijacked by gamers for tournaments. Except, they almost exclusively only wanted to play Super Smash Bros. Brawl or Halo 2. And I was pretty much banned from those tournaments after playing as Kirby and Pikachu too many times. And for creating a Covenant soldier named Leeroy Gungan. After kicking the crap out of everyone in Ghost Recon classic for PS2...I was pretty much banned from tournaments entirely. Sore losers, and sore winners!
Stereotypes: Every other lobby dweller outside the gamers was either a Chad, wannabe Chad poser, a ping pong legend, a wannabe Stacy, or a Hmong hoe. Unless you were the token sassy black woman or the the Intolerant Tolerance Brigade Marcher, that over-proud "new fruit" who felt the need to get nasty with anyone you even slightly suspected of not agreeing with the premise of Bruno. And if the second-to-last of these so much as misheard something they thought you said, they were all over you, preaching and making a scene before you could even get a word in to tell them that they did not hear what they thought they did. And they'd have a mob come after you too. And they'd bring in the token gay guy to beat you up as well, even when what you said had nothing to do with LGBT whatsoever!
I found myself hanging out with the "Polish gangster girl" and the resident "Anime Becky," as they were the only gals that didn't treat me, a reclusive Sims machinomic creator, like a dog turd on their shoes. They found the usual cliques trite and stupid, as did I. And were similarly damned to social irrelevance for such "heresy."
Neither was available to officially date; but that didn't matter. I at least had someone to talk to - other than those wimpy, whiny classmates that I'm amazed could at least tie their shoes without my help. Granted, the "Anime Becky" later made the mistake of thinking I was one of her cucks, and that I'd stick around and beg to remain close to her after taking needless abuse from her older sister online. She was mistaken. I blocked both. If I'm not allowed to defend myself against that garbage, then to Hell with both of them! I'd like to think she's learned not to take several-year-long friendships for granted. But...I doubt it. I still get along well with the other gal. In fact, I even got to be a court witness for her shotgun wedding.
Yes, there were the drunks. In fact, I even tried to save one...from himself. He drove his car into a snowbank. But then, a tow truck driver showed up randomly, and demanded we either pay him for a job he hadn't even performed yet, that neither of us called on his service for in the first place, or else he'd call the cops on my drunk suite mate. I pretty much told the driver that was trying to extort us to go to Hell. So...he called the cops. My suite mate's in-the-ditch car got towed, and he got arrested for a DUI. At least the cop let me go after a few minutes of questioning. I got my lemonade powder from Wal-Mart. Still...felt terrible. My suite mate was going to jail, and he didn't even hurt anyone...yet. I tried every trick I learned from watching The Wages of Fear to get my suite mate's car out of the ditch, drive it back to the lot for him, then drive him to his destination in my car. But that tow truck driver was a real piece of work. It's northern Michigan...they will find any excuse to rob you up there!
Campus and town statistics
Speaking of robbery, I usually try to post some regional statistics on these sorts of re-creations. Let's start with crime stats.
No major murders have been reported since I think at least 2001. And that one was a stalking-murder case, drug-related. The killer drove all the way up in the dead of night from Detroit, just to assassinate his target for some drug debt not paid...or...something.
Yes, around 2008 or something, a car hit some guy and sent him flying like a deer. He was taken to the hospital; but he survived. Also in 2008, a red light runner almost hit me while I was on my bike crossing a road to get to the library. Driving like mad. Probably running drugs. Don't know if police ever caught the bastard or not. As for what I'd've done if I were the cop, and the guy's attitude about almost killing a student were: "So?" ? Maybe it's best I not describe what I'd wanna do, while on this forum. Guys like that...are one reason serial killers exist, let's put it that way.
The most serious crime to happen most often, was hit-and-run damaging of other cars. That, and vehicle break-ins, mostly to steal iPods or some other dumb thing from the backseat.
Of reported crimes, the most common reported to DPS is what the school calls "disciplinary actions."
This can range anywhere from "You can't have a beer in that specific fridge there, dumb dumb!" to "As your RA, I don't like you, so I'm going to report you for possession of weed, even though you have a perfectly legal Marinol prescription, and have the city kidnap you for two weeks, just so you fail your final exams while locked up and get expelled"; all the way up to "You can't treat your floormates' nasal cyst with sulfacetamide body wash, dammit! That's considered 'drug trafficking' now!" Because why go after the next El Chapo, who's literally decapitating women for fun, when you can now legally harass a student for charity?
Yes, there are brawls and assaults. But nothing gets the town talking quite like an old-fashioned rape.
Most of the time, it's the drunken / drugged stupidity kind. But there was an incident in 2008. Two boys from Detroit, fans of a guy on the football team, began stalking a woman back to her dorm. Door security was lax. She ran to her door, but they caught up to her. No guy intervened, for fear of being labeled a "white knight" by their idiot peers and shamed for it. No gal intervened, for fear they'd be next. Suffice to say, a gang rape occurred in that hall. (Can't remember if it was in Hallisy, Taggert, Pickell, or Ward. Near the football field.)
One girl did come forward to testify as a witness later. And the rapists both said they were gonna kill her just as soon as they got out.
However, the Diversity Union freaked out when they discovered it was a black-on-white crime, of two off-campus guys against a girl. That the white knights didn't act for fear of being shamed / prosecuted and labeled "racist," and that the general mindset of seeing a crime in progress at the time was to ignore it...that was inconvenient to the narrative. So they launched a tirade of campaigns about the evils of on-campus white men, who were "all secretly rapists."
Solution? You could no longer visit your friends in a dorm that wasn't your own, unless they were watching you every second. Security on campus beefed up to almost airport levels. Cameras started popping up everywhere, until parts of the campus were just a barbed wire fence and watchtower away from looking like a moderate-security prison.
In town, there were 6 rapes in 2007 and 5 in 2008. Big Rapids...has a big problem with rape.
AreaVibes rates Big Rapids a solid F for sound employment. Decent jobs are very scarce up there. Anyone from there will quickly tell you so. The average income up there rarely exceeds $30k at best. It's closer to $50k in Michigan in general. U6 numbers are hard to measure; but U3 numbers are easy. U3 unemployment is 7.9%, compared to 5.2% for Michigan in general.
However, you'll find no shortage of retail outlets.
Housing ranks a solid F. You'll be fleeced on homes that would cost a lot less money in any other market. And rentals? The landlord probably has given up on life, and hates your guts at first sight. Don't expect nice housing.
AreaVibes rates Big Rapids a C for quality of schools, even though Ferris itself makes up half the city! Ouch!
Rated a solid F in this category. Yep. Unless you're part-Inuit, or just really committed to your degree, a Big Rapids winter will sour anyone. It has that "I can't believe it's not Minnesota" vibe.
In my own tests, I found that you can turn off lights and lock rooms in a majority of the suites, and simplify your gameplay. The universities in your game, which I've set this to Brichester by default, will never send enough NPCs to fill all rooms. There appears to be a hard spawner limit in the game. If there are mods for that, look into them. As many NPC spawns as most modern games are notorious for, Sims is very conservative on spawning.
Landscaping is as close to real-life as I could muster, having only a handful of photos, sketchy memories, and Google Street View to use as guides.
I've set this in Brindleton Bay, as there are very few 64x64 lots available in the game.
Lot Traits: Fast Internet, Study Spot, Creepy Crawlies
Lot Size: 64x64
Lot Price (furnished): 698,773
Lot Price (unfurnished): 280,861
Update 11/23/19: I've included a few more screenshots, for sticklers on floorplan quality and front view quality. It's nearly impossible to show everything at once, due to the massive size of this building (and how many trees obstruct the view.) Therefore, I've provided a few "total front" views and some partial front views, unedited, for a better zoom quality.
As for floor plans, I've included many new shots. They're a tad redundant, however. I've found I can only get good zoom showing about 1/10th of the building total, or 1/5 of a half of the North Wing, at a time, and get decent zoom. That's why there are so many shots. If it gets hard to tell them apart, that's because the rooms are almost all the same. The mop sink rooms...are what they are.
That set of window sheets operating as a shower curtain? Your Sims will walk right through it, ignoring it. Any other routing issues will be due largely to the fact that there are a lot of rooms, and Sims get confused by that. (Because the game's dorm system was intended for much smaller apartment or penthouse-style dorms, or for much smaller residence halls. Big Rapids dorm housing...pushes the game almost to its limits.)
Special thanks for Google Maps, for letting me fill in the blanks on details I forgot after a decade of not living there.
UPDATE 1/26/2020: This lot now works in PS4. Make sure you have Discover University, and check the Sims 4 Gallery. Currently, direct Tray file downloads to the Tray folder via flash drive are still not possible in the PS4 version.
UPDATE 4/7/2020: Yes, there is content (I'm told not to mention by name) out there that will bring the real-life Glenn C. Bond Hall sign into the game, so you can add it to the lot. But it is not required here.
UPDATE 4/9/2020: A few extra floor plan images (converted from PNG to JPG, but otherwise unedited) have been added, just to make certain all angles needed are provided. See the closer-up shots for better views of rooms, as it's impossible to provide good zoom on the total floor shots without some cropping. As such, this may be the last time I upload a building this large here. If you'd like to see more creations like this that I'm not going to feature on this site, stay tuned to my journal for future information on where to find them.
UPDATE 6/9/2020: With the release of Eco Lifestyle, it's now possible to reposition the bathroom windows to be more accurately centered between wall tiles, closer to real life. However, I'm not planning on releasing a new, separate build for support on MTS at this time. Maybe the Gallery, but nowhere else. The stuff pack this lot is packaged with elsewhere is also not getting an upgraded build based solely on this minor detail. However, if you are a stickler for accuracy, you can reposition each bathroom window yourself with minimal difficulty, courtesy of the new patch.
North Bond Hall - Discover University.zip
Size: 329.8 KB · Downloads: 1,294 · 19th Nov 2019
Key: - File was updated after upload was posted
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