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Theorist
Original Poster
#1 Old 20th Jul 2017 at 4:20 AM Last edited by ScaryRob : 24th Jul 2017 at 5:31 AM.
Default From a Lot Builder's Perspective: Compare Sims 2 and 3 (or 4)
I'm still playing (mostly building...OK, pretty much just building) for Sims 2, but the time may be near when I might consider moving on to Sims 3.

Frankly, I've noticed that most of the better lot builders moved on to TS3 years ago. Does this men TS3 is a better choice from the point of view of lot builders?

What are some of the specific differences, for those of you who might remember some details about TS2?

For example, TS2 has functional beach lots, wherein lots actually include an ocean front and Sims can swim in the ocean (as I remember, although I haven't played a beach lot in years). Granted, there were/are a host of problems and pitfalls concerning TS2 beach lots, especially for the unwary player.
I haven't noticed any beach lots for TS3 - are they possible?

Likewise, TS2 apartment lots come with their own host of problems. Are apartments possible for TS3 and how well do they work?

What about world/neighborhood building? In TS2, you have to use an entirely separate game (SimCity 4) to build a custom hood, using a fairly intricate and complicated process. My understanding is that this has been made easier in TS3, correct?

What about hood corruption? Does it exist in TS3?

What are some of the glaring shortcomings of TS3, again, from mostly a lot builder's perspective?

In short, what are your opinions in comparing TS2 and TS3 from a lot builder's perspective?

Edit: I'm not shy about using building cheats, so having to use them to achieve certain effects is not a drawback for me.
Edit: If anyone else wants to ask any questions, feel free to do so. Just try to remember that this thread is in the Architecture Social Group, and thus is for discussion of issues affecting primarily lot building, not so much general gaming issues.
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Mad Poster
#2 Old 20th Jul 2017 at 5:46 AM
Don't mind me, I'm going to skulk about in the shadows and eavesdrop on every word that's said on this thread too...

*finds a dark corner for lurking*

Welcome to the Dark Side...
We lied about having cookies.
dodgy builder
#3 Old 20th Jul 2017 at 7:26 AM
Beachlots works fine in ts3 if you make them yourself or make a world with them. Importing them and placing might make them drop related to the road, and the most used cheat for lifting or lowering lots doesn't work.
Alchemist
#4 Old 20th Jul 2017 at 1:11 PM
There's so much to tell and complain about differencies, advantages and problems in TS2 and TS3. Sooooo much.
But I'd say I prefer TS3 for the CAST and more realistic looking graphics

If you remember me, I'm awesome!
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Instructor
#5 Old 20th Jul 2017 at 3:33 PM Last edited by cutsocks : 20th Jul 2017 at 6:06 PM.
Ah, a 2 vs 3 discussion... let's get the popcorn out.

Actually, probably not. I've always felt in the end (discounting the, let's call it, cosmetic updates in 3) that the Sims 2 and Sims 3 are equals. It all comes down to which gameplay style you prefer--the more micromanaging dollhouse of 2 or guiding a household in the more simulated world of 3. Truth be told, I hated the gameplay in Sims 2, but then I didn't realize that until Sims 3 came out. So most of my Sims 2 time was building as well. (Albeit, my building ability back then was fairly unskilled and terrible.) That being said, building in the two are very similar, but Sims 3 does have some notable additions.

Beach lots are definitely a thing in 3, but like Volvenom pointed out, they have been somewhat problematic to share. Swimming in the water of a beach lot came late in the expansion cycle of 3, but at the same time added functional piers for small boats and houseboats. You can make completely underwater dive lots and islands (see Crowkeeper for a few amazing island lots. simsgal2227 has a couple as well).

Apartments are a slightly different breed in 3. Instead of providing full units for multiple households, you build one unit for one household and other units (off limits to the player) are behind NPC doors. Those units are "filled" by townie/service sims. Pretty sure the change is due to the resource sacrifice of the open world in Sims 3. luvalphvle makes wonderful apartments. I don't actually play with apartments much, but they can have some wonky quirks. (I wish is knew how they were "buggy" in Sims 2 to compare better.)

Now I never delved into world building in Sims 2, but there are two sides to world building in both. Create-a-world (CAW) in 3 is an amazing and powerful EA-provided utility that is fairly easy to use, though extraordinarily time-consuming to master. Its possibilities are near limitless. See Nilxis. His current WIP is just jawdroppingly outstanding. Heck just check out the Sims 3 Store worlds for the variety available. However, internal (ingame) world building is almost a bit more limited in 3. While in 2, you can pretty much just toss down new lots of whatever size on any stretch of road, in 3, you are best to stick with the lot space already provided. There is, though, an internal tool in 3 that lets you freely place new lots, you are often restricted by the routing data and it's a bit finicky overall. (More on this stuff later.) Also lots in Sims 3 are always at least one tile apart, so no "connected" row houses.

Hood/game corruption... I'm not an expert on this. Corruption can happen in any game, but I would say, in general, things are better in Sims 3. I think this mostly comes down to how sims data is attached to sims and lots and whatnot is handled differently in the Sims 3. You are not gonna corrupt your game by deleting a sim, or families from the bin, or lots from the bin, or moving an occupied lot to the bin. There is always a new game state for neighborhoods in Sims 3, unlike Sims 2 (if I recall correctly). I can't tell you how many times I f'd things up and had to completely reinstall Sims 2 from disks... I have only ever completely reinstalled Sims 3 when I changed computers... (Granted I was somewhat internet limited during periods of Sims 2 and was unaware of anti-corruption "rules".)

Ah the shortcomings... without delving into gameplay, object, or mechanics differences too much, build-mode-wise there are not many I can think of. The most notable is the level limits in Sims 3. You have 5 (and a half (you can put halfwalls, fences, and furniture/objects on the roof of the 5th level)) levels above ground and five below ground. Those 5 levels above do include the foundation level (which can be you Sims 2 style basement (always a favorite of mine). So essentially, your level usage is a challenge of efficiency. So making that CFE-short dummy level between floor is a sacrifice. Building on a foundation is a sacrifice. Not to toot my own horn, but I like to think that I am really good at squeezing all the potential out of the level limit. It's forced me to do some serious pre-planning solutions on certain builds with creative leveling shifting. It's a puzzle/challenge that I've learned to love. But skyscrapers that use every floor, not gonna happen. You can make skyscrapers with some extra tall CFE dummy floors (elevators will still work with nothing extra needed) and creative wall covering, but still limited to the five levels. Precision terrain editing with clicks is not present in the Sims 3 in the way it is in 2. But there are CFE workarounds for most of that. No connecting columns. Not really two-story doors and windows. (I say not really because there is a two-story barn door in the Pets expansion, and I think there is a essentially a multi-story window and a two-story door from the Store.) No completely adjacent lots for "connected" buildings. Transparent cc floor tiles never came to be in 3, as well. So your weather-proof CFE greenhouses, skylights, and biodomes, just won'd happen. (That is if I understand that they can be CFE'd correctly.) The platforms in Sims 2 are foundation height, but only one step high in Sims 3. They are not as versatile in the Sims 3, but still have some uses. Your L or U shaped stairs are gonna have to rely completely on CFE. (I still, to this day, miss Sims 2 style platforms.)

Otherwise the systems in 2 are pretty much the same in 3. Roofing, walls, CFE, terrain--all mostly the same. Object placing has a bit more versatility, as diagonal positions are there without cheats. And on top of that, I have had almost zero problems with sims using furniture off grid and off diagonal (with moveobjects on cheat (MOO)). So I guess that's just improved routing stuff. Connected items (counters, sectionals) can be a bit wonky on the diagonal though.

Delving into a gameplay/mechanic change, there is something I want to mention before I start lauding the awesomeness of Sims 3 additions... The environment need from Sims 2 is gone. Embrace the cheap, minimal, spartan, and ascetic! Hooray! I mean, you can make a frugal sim in 2 that you want to like and live that way, but their environment score will tank and they are gonna hate it as much as the most greedy and superficial sim. There is no penalty from having the cheapest stuff around. Granted from use, inexpensive items can result in mood lowering moodlets (slept poorly, stale refrigerator food, uneven cooking, standard def television (gasp!)). And cheap items are still more prone to break. But your environment score won't tank because your dining room is a gigantic white modernist void with only one (artfully arranged) single tile table and a solo chair. It just makes large open rooms/areas way easier to manage. (Of course, there are still all the benefits of having expensive stuff. Beautifully decorated!)

There are two game changers (or I like to think so) that Sims 3 added to building. Create-a-style (CAST) and open world.

As you probably know, CAST lets you change the color and texture of almost everything. No need for CC recolors, the versatility of everything goes up by like a thousand. Creative CASTing along with MOO cheat and bits have new usages. It's funny, but this thing that I love so, so, so, so, so very much about Sims 3, I honestly have a hard time figuring out where to start to describe just how great it is. It is just such a powerful tool that can let you do so much. So much potential everywhere. In my opinion, there is a special layer of damnation for Sims 3 players who don't use CAST. It is that much of an awesome, blessed thing, that non-use is an affront to the divine. :P

(A bit of an example that I have thought of recently. So Zarathustra is working on his campus sub-hood, which looks amazing. But I keep thinking how much being able to CAST his grey stone/brick buildings ever so subtly to varying grays would make it all the more awesome. A later addition or a newer building becomes instantly recognizable with a different texture or a lighter shade. It could break up the sameness, but keep the uniformity.)

Open world is primarily a gameplay aspect, and its influence on building is less pronounced, but still there. Take for example beach lots. The bounds of a lot a house is on may not extend into the water, but wander ten feet off the lot to the shore (without a loading screen or weird time thing) and any house is a beach lot. The way the world and lots can integrate together changes how you approach builds. You don't necessarily need to provide a food option on a community lot when the the lot next door does. Almost every house I built in 2 had a home gym, almost never now in Sims 3. The views, orientation, and overall location to other lots matter. That cliffside house with panoramic views over the town has a lot more impact. Lots don't have to be placed next to a road. A quiet fishing spot can really be tucked away in the middle of nowhere, off the beaten path. But there is a bit of a give and take. You lose the Sims 2 animations of getting into a car and backing out, but you can put your garages anywhere you damn well please now. Of course pairing this all with CAW is all the more freeing, so you have have your garages face the "alley" behind the house.

Tomb building with the World Adventures expansion is still a wholly unique thing. Often goes by completely forgotten about, and I think there are probably aspects of it that have never been fully explored despite being the first expansion. Build mode is a "level editor"--place traps and puzzle for adventurers to overcome. Rather neat, but situtational.

I think my brain is dying a bit, so I'll wrap things up.

In my opinion, as the Sims series currently stands as a whole, the place for lot builders is the Sims 3. BUT I think the main decision between the iterations should be based on what your preferred gameplay style is. And as much as I love the Sims 3, you really do need a significant amount of the expansions to get the most out of things, and I'm not gonna tell someone to make that kind of financial commitment when building, really, is just as fun in the Sims 2 (and even Sims 4).
Theorist
Original Poster
#6 Old 20th Jul 2017 at 7:07 PM
Thanks, cutsocks, this is exactly the kind of detailed information I was looking for.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cutsocks
but at the same time added functional piers for small boats and houseboats.

Are boats driveable then? So a Sim can drive a boat from one lot to another?
Also, I understand the open world aspect allows sims to walk or drive anywhere in a hood, true?

Quote:
Instead of providing full units for multiple households, you build one unit for one household and other units (off limits to the player) are behind NPC doors.

So there's no need to furnish all the other apartments?

Quote:
However, internal (ingame) world building is almost a bit more limited in 3. While in 2, you can pretty much just toss down new lots of whatever size on any stretch of road, in 3, you are best to stick with the lot space already provided.

Presumably, you're referring to hoods/worlds that come with the game in 3, wherein you have to use the lots that are provided?
So, let's say you build a custom world from scratch. Doesn't it let you place the lots wherever you want?
Also, is there a limit to the number of lots in a hood/world?

Quote:
Also lots in Sims 3 are always at least one tile apart, so no "connected" row houses.

OK, that's a considerable negative aspect. No cheat to workaround this limitation?

Quote:
Ah the shortcomings... The most notable is the level limits in Sims 3. You have 5 (and a half (you can put halfwalls, fences, and furniture/objects on the roof of the 5th level)) levels above ground and five below ground. Those 5 levels above do include the foundation level (which can be you Sims 2 style basement (always a favorite of mine). So essentially, your level usage is a challenge of efficiency. So making that CFE-short dummy level between floor is a sacrifice. Building on a foundation is a sacrifice. Not to toot my own horn, but I like to think that I am really good at squeezing all the potential out of the level limit. It's forced me to do some serious pre-planning solutions on certain builds with creative leveling shifting. It's a puzzle/challenge that I've learned to love. But skyscrapers that use every floor, not gonna happen. You can make skyscrapers with some extra tall CFE dummy floors (elevators will still work with nothing extra needed) and creative wall covering, but still limited to the five levels.

One of the bigger drawbacks, which I was aware of.

Quote:
Precision terrain editing with clicks is not present in the Sims 3 in the way it is in 2.

You're referring to the Sims 2 hood editing cheat, right? But looking at some of the worlds that have been made for 3, it seems that almost anything is possible, terrain-wise, so I don't understand what you mean by "editing with clicks". I mean, looking at some of the 3 worlds, they are absolutely stunning compared to 2.

Quote:
No connecting columns. Not really two-story doors and windows. (I say not really because there is a two-story barn door in the Pets expansion, and I think there is a essentially a multi-story window and a two-story door from the Store.) No completely adjacent lots for "connected" buildings. Transparent cc floor tiles never came to be in 3, as well. So your weather-proof CFE greenhouses, skylights, and biodomes, just won'd happen. (That is if I understand that they can be CFE'd correctly.)

Interesting.

Quote:
The platforms in Sims 2 are foundation height, but only one step high in Sims 3. They are not as versatile in the Sims 3, but still have some uses. Your L or U shaped stairs are gonna have to rely completely on CFE. (I still, to this day, miss Sims 2 style platforms.)

Not sure what you mean by "platforms". Interior foundations in TS2?

Quote:
Otherwise the systems in 2 are pretty much the same in 3. Roofing, walls, CFE, terrain--all mostly the same. Object placing has a bit more versatility, as diagonal positions are there without cheats. And on top of that, I have had almost zero problems with sims using furniture off grid and off diagonal (with moveobjects on cheat (MOO)). So I guess that's just improved routing stuff. Connected items (counters, sectionals) can be a bit wonky on the diagonal though.

Are the objects that are placed at exactly a 45 angle, or can they be rotated and placed at just about any angle? It seems that much of the furniture I see in uploaded houses is being placed at something other than on the grid or at exactly 45 degrees.

Quote:
As you probably know, CAST lets you change the color and texture of almost everything. No need for CC recolors, the versatility of everything goes up by like a thousand. Creative CASTing along with MOO cheat and bits have new usages. It's funny, but this thing that I love so, so, so, so, so very much about Sims 3, I honestly have a hard time figuring out where to start to describe just how great it is. It is just such a powerful tool that can let you do so much. So much potential everywhere. In my opinion, there is a special layer of damnation for Sims 3 players who don't use CAST. It is that much of an awesome, blessed thing, that non-use is an affront to the divine. :P

Yes, I was somewhat aware of this and it does sound fantastic.

Quote:
Take for example beach lots. The bounds of a lot a house is on may not extend into the water, but wander ten feet off the lot to the shore (without a loading screen or weird time thing) and any house is a beach lot.

Awesome.

Quote:
The way the world and lots can integrate together changes how you approach builds. You don't necessarily need to provide a food option on a community lot when the the lot next door does. Almost every house I built in 2 had a home gym, almost never now in Sims 3. The views, orientation, and overall location to other lots matter. That cliffside house with panoramic views over the town has a lot more impact. Lots don't have to be placed next to a road. A quiet fishing spot can really be tucked away in the middle of nowhere, off the beaten path. But there is a bit of a give and take. You lose the Sims 2 animations of getting into a car and backing out, but you can put your garages anywhere you damn well please now. Of course pairing this all with CAW is all the more freeing, so you have have your garages face the "alley" behind the house.

Yes, from what I know about it, the entire open world concept is probably the most appealing aspect of TS3 and the way it obviously affects lot building.

Quote:
Tomb building with the World Adventures expansion is still a wholly unique thing. Often goes by completely forgotten about, and I think there are probably aspects of it that have never been fully explored despite being the first expansion. Build mode is a "level editor"--place traps and puzzle for adventurers to overcome. Rather neat, but situtational.

I'm totally unfamiliar with this aspect of TS3. What do you mean by "situational"?
I'm not into all the magical and paranormal stuff of any of the games, but could things like what you describe be used to build a haunted house, with various traps and puzzles? Would a lot that has these kinds of things be replayable, like a normal lot, or is it a one-off thing that once a player solves the puzzles he would no longer go back to the lot?

Quote:
In my opinion, as the Sims series currently stands as a whole, the place for lot builders is the Sims 3. BUT I think the main decision between the iterations should be based on what your preferred gameplay style is. And as much as I love the Sims 3, you really do need a significant amount of the expansions to get the most out of things, and I'm not gonna tell someone to make that kind of financial commitment when building, really, is just as fun in the Sims 2 (and even Sims 4).


Thanks for all the details, cutsocks. I'll probably have more questions from time to time. I'm also going to add a couple of clarifications to my original post, uptopic.
I think at the very least I'll end up buying the TS3 basegame, to give me better idea of how things work in that game, although I don't know when that will happen. I do have a good source for used Sims games here in Tucson, where I was able to get most of my TS2 discs back in 2012 for less than $100. I haven't checked lately how much they want for the Sims 3 stuff.
Instructor
#7 Old 20th Jul 2017 at 7:30 PM
2 and 3 vs 4.

I have the base game for Sims 4, so I feel a little able to share my thoughts.

Building-wise. NO. Just no. The lack of terrain tools (and with that CFE) is a deal breaker. And because I'm a Sims 3 guy, the lack of CAST is a deal breaker. But Sims 4 is probably the easiest and most friendly to build with, though. And it really does have some neat parts that 2 and 3 don't have: the roof texture by individual sections, the trim and and cornice tools, easily adjustable wall and foundation height (though that is probably what killed the terrain tools), shifting windows up and down on a wall, the ability to pick up and move and rotate rooms and even the whole build, column integrating with fences, and that top bit of fencing/railing stuff that I can't remember the name for... And with routing changes, absolutely crammed, tiny spaces don't result in foot stamping (granted sims walk through each other...) And despite not having CAST, decorating is fun with the ability to scale items and just more clutter and clutter-able surfaces. And the cabinets. Oh lord are Sims 4 cabinetry options amazing. So yeah, maybe if you just want the shiniest, newest, most-user friendly building; Sims 4 is great.

(A bit off-topic from here on out.)

But as I mentioned previously, a decision should come down to gameplay. I approached 2 and 3 earlier by the largest swath of gameplay: the micromanaged dollhouses vs the open world. Almost opposite ends of the spectrum. Cut and dry. But of course the individual bits can make the decision for you. Like horses, go 3. Like to run a business, go 2. Like vampires, fairies, werewolves, merfolk, and mummies (Oh my!); go 3. Want a lovable, shuffling, playable zombie, go 2. (I miss Sims 2 zombies so much.) Etc, etc, etc.

Sims 4, therefore, is a weird duck to me. It is neither the gameplay of 2 or 3, nor does it really meet in the middle of them. And I guess, cause I'm used to the lack of them in 3, the loading screens of 4 made it feel more like 2, but that's not really an accurate assessment. Obviously I can't make a full opinion of 4 (and all its individual bits) until it is done and Sims 5 is out or on the way. But if I was pressed to say, and I'm hesitant to put it this way, the overall gameplay (for me) of the Sims 4 is its gaming-ness? I constantly found myself working to manipulate the mood system to get the most out of whatever I had my sims doing. I never did that quite to the extent in 2 or 3, but those options are present in them to some degree. (I mean, if I really wanted to learn something most efficiently from a book in 3, I could send my bookworm-traited sim (with the fast learner lifetime reward) to the library in the autumn as a vampire. Or something like that.)

OH. Spandrel. That top railing bit is a spandrel. I knew it would come to me. :P
Instructor
#8 Old 20th Jul 2017 at 8:50 PM Last edited by cutsocks : 20th Jul 2017 at 9:07 PM.
Are boats driveable then? So a Sim can drive a boat from one lot to another?
Also, I understand the open world aspect allows sims to walk or drive anywhere in a hood, true?

Little boats work like cars, so a point A to point B mode of transportation. Houseboats are like more fully navigable.
As long as routing allows, you can walk your sims around everywhere. And for the collection stuff (finding bugs and rocks and other things) you'lll need to. So directing a sim to go to a far off corner of the map, they will hop in their car (or boat) or taxi (or taxi boat), take it as close as the road or water will take them, then make the rest of the trip on foot. Jogging (available after having one point in the athletic skill) is really fun in the Sims 3. And along with the sidewalks along the road, there are designated paths that sims will prioritize using before having to, well, go off the beaten path.
In CAW there is non-routable paint that will prevent sims from going places. Like walking up or sheer a sheer cliff or getting close to the edge of the map or just blocking them out of areas they don't ever need to be.

So there's no need to furnish all the other apartments?
Exactly.

Presumably, you're referring to hoods/worlds that come with the game in 3, wherein you have to use the lots that are provided?
So, let's say you build a custom world from scratch. Doesn't it let you place the lots wherever you want?
Also, is there a limit to the number of lots in a hood/world?

Yeah. Building a custom world from scratch, you can put the lots where you want in CAW. But after working out the routing and packaging it up and then once installed, in game the ability to add new lots is limited.
Technically, if my mathing is correct, on the largest map the lot limit is 1,048,576 1x1 tile sized lots, spaced 1 tile apart.
Joking aside, I don't think there is an EA world with more than 100 lots, and I think most are around 80 or less. I think the target maximum for most world builders is about 120. But a top of the line, beefy rig could handle over 150. It really all comes down to your computer specs.

OK, that's a considerable negative aspect. No cheat to workaround this limitation?
Maybe with decor objects in CAW or other CC. But in general, modular things like this, for example, aren't gonna happen.

You're referring to the Sims 2 hood editing cheat, right? But looking at some of the worlds that have been made for 3, it seems that almost anything is possible, terrain-wise, so I don't understand what you mean by "editing with clicks". I mean, looking at some of the 3 worlds, they are absolutely stunning compared to 2.
I was referring to on lot terrain editing. Clicking to raise or lower the ground. The amount raised or lowered through one click is like standard and easy to control in Sims 2. It is not so in Sims 3. It's one of those give and take things. You lose the control precision, but you have the ability for much softer, natural contours in the terrain.

Not sure what you mean by "platforms". Interior foundations in TS2?
The stage tool in Sims 2. I didn't have my terms right. So Sims 3 doesn't have a stage tool, it has the platform tool instead. They are unfortunately not equivalent.


Are the objects that are placed at exactly a 45 angle, or can they be rotated and placed at just about any angle? It seems that much of the furniture I see in uploaded houses is being placed at something other than on the grid or at exactly 45 degrees.
Pressing < or > to rotate an object will give you 8 directions up, down, left and right as well as the 45 degree diagonals. Holding alt+left mouse will give you full 360 rotation--what I meant by off diagonal. Alt+left mouse also lets you slide things around off grid. Sorry I wasn't very clear there.

I'm totally unfamiliar with this aspect of TS3. What do you mean by "situational"?
I'm not into all the magical and paranormal stuff of any of the games, but could things like what you describe be used to build a haunted house, with various traps and puzzles? Would a lot that has these kinds of things be replayable, like a normal lot, or is it a one-off thing that once a player solves the puzzles he would no longer go back to the lot?

A haunted house is a perfect example of being situational. And unfortunately not replayable. Loot and treasure, I believe will respawn after a certain time. But, I believe, once solved will stay solved. You could, however, replace the solved lot with the unsolved original from the bin if you want to go again. Assuming the tomb is not connected to a different tomb like some of the lots are in the World Adventures sub-hoods of Egypt, France, and China. Removing/replacing the lot will break the connections. Um, that was probably a really confusing answer--sorry about that.

Thanks for all the details, cutsocks.
My pleasure!
dodgy builder
#9 Old 21st Jul 2017 at 12:15 AM
There is glass roofs in 3. It came with ITF expansion together with fitting windows. I have used them together on several lots. There is also a few glass windows and floors of different types. Luna had a ceiling as section, and I think Simlogical made regular floor tiles.

In caw you can make flat worlds without roads, plants, stones etc. Then you can just place the lot where you want. Obsticles makes routing harder though.
Theorist
Original Poster
#10 Old 21st Jul 2017 at 5:25 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by cutsocks
Are boats driveable then? So a Sim can drive a boat from one lot to another?
Also, I understand the open world aspect allows sims to walk or drive anywhere in a hood, true?

Little boats work like cars, so a point A to point B mode of transportation. Houseboats are like more fully navigable.

So you can build a houseboat and it can navigate just about anywhere on the water, with Sims living in it?

Quote:
In CAW there is non-routable paint that will prevent sims from going places. Like walking up or sheer a sheer cliff or getting close to the edge of the map or just blocking them out of areas they don't ever need to be.

Makes sense.

Quote:
So there's no need to furnish all the other apartments?
Exactly.

Follow-up question: I don't think I've noticed any common areas in any of the TS3 apartments I've looked at - do they exist? For example, in TS2 many/most apartment buildings would include a common area with amenities that all apartment residents could use. Is this the case with TS3 also? Would the townies that live in the other apartments use common areas?

Quote:
Not sure what you mean by "platforms". Interior foundations in TS2?
The stage tool in Sims 2. I didn't have my terms right. So Sims 3 doesn't have a stage tool, it has the platform tool instead. They are unfortunately not equivalent.

Funny that you mentioned earlier that you miss the TS2 stage tool, because looking at many of the uploaded TS3 houses makes me wish TS2 had a platform tool. Odd how they didn't include both in 3.
Theorist
Original Poster
#11 Old 21st Jul 2017 at 5:29 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Volvenom
There is glass roofs in 3. It came with ITF expansion together with fitting windows. I have used them together on several lots. There is also a few glass windows and floors of different types. Luna had a ceiling as section, and I think Simlogical made regular floor tiles.

Yes, I was pretty sure I saw things like skylights on some of the uploaded TS3 houses.

Quote:
In caw you can make flat worlds without roads, plants, stones etc. Then you can just place the lot where you want. Obsticles makes routing harder though.

Both you and cutsocks have mentioned this routing business. I can understand that a world designer might designate some areas of a world as being off limits, but now you mention "obstacles". Are those the areas that the designer has deemed off-limits? In any case, I have a feeling that this aspect of TS3 probably doesn't affect lot building too much, does it?
Theorist
Original Poster
#12 Old 21st Jul 2017 at 5:43 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by cutsocks
2 and 3 vs 4.

I have the base game for Sims 4, so I feel a little able to share my thoughts.

Thanks for the insight into TS4, as I was going to ask you what your impressions of it are so far.
TS5 is already on the horizon? I've thought for a number of years that perhaps it's time another company made a Sims-like game, because I think the competition would be good.
dodgy builder
#13 Old 21st Jul 2017 at 10:29 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScaryRob
Both you and cutsocks have mentioned this routing business. I can understand that a world designer might designate some areas of a world as being off limits, but now you mention "obstacles". Are those the areas that the designer has deemed off-limits? In any case, I have a feeling that this aspect of TS3 probably doesn't affect lot building too much, does it?


Routing us the net the sims follow. It has to be tucked in almost. The builder has to make sure there is no cut lines or isolated connection dots around any decoration objects, or too difficult topography. Without that work the world lag horribly after a bit of play, when sims or animals get stuck in misshaps in the routing. Depending on the amount of missing links, the world can soon be impossible to play.

It's on the layer below the lots and will be different in different worlds.
dodgy builder
#14 Old 21st Jul 2017 at 10:35 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScaryRob
1. So you can build a houseboat and it can navigate just about anywhere on the water, with Sims living in it?

2.Follow-up question: I don't think I've noticed any common areas in any of the TS3 apartments I've looked at - do they exist? For example, in TS2 many/most apartment buildings would include a common area with amenities that all apartment residents could use. Is this the case with TS3 also? Would the townies that live in the other apartments use common areas?


1: they can, but the width of the water and where to dock will be important.

2: Apartments with hidden and public markers can have public areas, and tge will be used by other tenants. There us other apartment types in 3 as well though. Like the roommate type. It can be very buggy though.
Theorist
Original Poster
#15 Old 22nd Jul 2017 at 1:12 AM
In one of his answers yesterday, cutsocks mentioned lot sizes, specifically 1x1 lots, if I understood it correctly. So, what is the range of lot sizes in TS3? If the minimum size is indeed 1x1, what is the largest? And do all lots have to be rectangular?

Another thing: I see many/most TS3 lot uploads have laundry rooms. So, are these functional? That is, is doing the laundry something that Sims do in TS3?
dodgy builder
#16 Old 22nd Jul 2017 at 1:36 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScaryRob
In one of his answers yesterday, cutsocks mentioned lot sizes, specifically 1x1 lots, if I understood it correctly. So, what is the range of lot sizes in TS3? If the minimum size is indeed 1x1, what is the largest? And do all lots have to be rectangular?

Another thing: I see many/most TS3 lot uploads have laundry rooms. So, are these functional? That is, is doing the laundry something that Sims do in TS3?


There is a ton of options in ts3 including mods, so I'm just going to give you the short answers. Lotsizes can be unequal length and width, if the world is costum made, it can be any size. The biggest though is 64×64.

Laundry works with washers and dryers etc. You need the right exp packs.
Top Secret Researcher
#17 Old 22nd Jul 2017 at 6:00 AM
Hi ScaryRob, you're back. Your avatar is funny.
Cutsocks- nice summary.

Routing on lots is similar to TS2. If items are too close together, sims throw a stomp fit. Some items are not usable if placed in certain ways.

Lot sizes are a bit different from TS2. The smallest is 10 X 10 (I think similar to 1 X 1). The largest is 64 X 64. The in game editor has some predetermined sizes and there is a mod for custom sizes. Prebuilt lots can be placed on larger empty lots, and moved a bit with ingame tools (i.e. centered or moved to a corner). Lots cannot be made smaller however.

I cannot state enough the wonder and delight of the CreateAStyletool (CASt). Any color- ANY COLOR, most textures, patterns on almost any surface. You can even import your own patterns. It is worth the price of admission on its own. You can play with it for days.

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Theorist
Original Poster
#18 Old 27th Jul 2017 at 4:19 AM
OK, a few more questions, although I'm going to break my own thread topic somewhat because only the first question deals with lot building.

So, the game allows lots to be placed anywhere, including away from streets. If a house, say a farm or ranch, is placed in the middle of nowhere, will it still be able to utilize vehicles, since the lot is not connected to a street and if so, how does a vehicle get to the nearest street? Does the world designer designate a route?

Now for a couple of non-building questions:

If I bought a DVD and installed the game, would I have to be connected to EA/Origin/wherever every time I wanted to play? In other words, do I need an online connection to play?
Do I even need to register the game at all?
Are there any disadvantages to buying collection packs, like for example the so-called Starter Pack that has the Base Game, Late Night and High End Loft Stuff, or would I be better buying each part separately for some reason? The reason I ask this is because, with Sims 2, having certain collection packs will prevent a player from utilizing some game mods.
Anything at all I should be wary of in regard to buying the game?
Finally for today, since you folks are tuned into the Sims 3 world, is there any word on perhaps additional collection packs that might be released in the not-too-distant future?

I know these question have been answered countless times elsewhere, but frankly, there are a lot of conflicting answers, especially at places like Amazon, and I trust you lot builders here a little more.
Top Secret Researcher
#19 Old 27th Jul 2017 at 5:24 AM
The game allows lots to be placed off road, but not anywhere. If you have an empty lot and hover over the map, the lot is red where it can't be placed and turns green when the game is happy. However, the game still sometimes lets you place a lot in a not great place- where the elevation distorts the lot, for example. Some people advise not adding lots in edit town ever, because doing so can disrupt the world's routing. MTS accepts builds only on flat lots, unless there is a good reason why the lot is not flat.

In TS3 cars teleport from wherever they are (garage, driveway, roof, pocket) to the street. No animations for the car getting to the street or for the sims getting into the car. The upside is that cars can be placed anywhere and driveways do not need to connect to roads (or even exist).

Way back in 2009, when TS3 released, Origin was not needed at all. Then somewhere around September 2012, all new versions of the game required Origin to install. You can download the game from the DVD, but need Origin installed on your computer to authenticate the game. With this version, you must log in to Origin to start your game, but you can be offline. You will also be on "the dreaded" patch level 1.69 when Origin is involved. Most of us that can stick with patch 1.67- then no Origin is needed. Also, 1.69 has a very crappy version of any game starter, that "forgets" which EP you chose at launch. Here are some links explaining the Origin version and patch 1.69:
http://sims3.crinrict.com/en/2015/1...ck-manager.html
http://nraas.wikispaces.com/Patch+1.69

Nearly all mods will work on either of the final patch levels. Which EPs you have or don't have do not matter, as they did in TS2. For TS3 it is all about the patch. There are a few utilities that haven't been updated for patch 1.69- but if you don't have them you won't miss them.

If you buy TS3 from Steam,you stay on patch 1.67. At Steam's recent summer sale, TS3 and all EPs were $5 each. If you buy a used disk, and have the registration code, and it is a version before September 2012, you do not need to register it, and probably can't even if it you wanted to. Origin installs register your game automatically. Which means a used disk post September 2012 will be useless. As far as collections go, no new ones have been released in quite some time, and it seems unlikely new ones will be made.

Need help building? Mentoring4Builders: Click Here
Get in the swim- Mermaidia
New at Simszoo
dodgy builder
#20 Old 27th Jul 2017 at 3:17 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScaryRob
So, the game allows lots to be placed anywhere, including away from streets. If a house, say a farm or ranch, is placed in the middle of nowhere, will it still be able to utilize vehicles, since the lot is not connected to a street and if so, how does a vehicle get to the nearest street? Does the world designer designate a route?

Now for a couple of non-building questions:

If I bought a DVD and installed the game, would I have to be connected to EA/Origin/wherever every time I wanted to play? In other words, do I need an online connection to play?
Do I even need to register the game at all?
Are there any disadvantages to buying collection packs, like for example the so-called Starter Pack that has the Base Game, Late Night and High End Loft Stuff, or would I be better buying each part separately for some reason? The reason I ask this is because, with Sims 2, having certain collection packs will prevent a player from utilizing some game mods.
Anything at all I should be wary of in regard to buying the game?
Finally for today, since you folks are tuned into the Sims 3 world, is there any word on perhaps additional collection packs that might be released in the not-too-distant future?

I know these question have been answered countless times elsewhere, but frankly, there are a lot of conflicting answers, especially at places like Amazon, and I trust you lot builders here a little more.


There is 3 different levels of building. In game you have the regular on your lot type, and the edit world type ... or whatever it's called. The last type is what attuned says is quite buggy. Then you have the caw tool which builds worlds from scratch.
If a world lets you place houses away from a road they are usually without roads all together. That means no cars, if they have no bicycle paths as well, they won't be functional either.

I have a pre 2012 disc game and installed it before I installed Origin on this new computer. I now run 1.67 caw and ts3 without having to update it. Origin keeps having the update for 1.69 available on the game icon, but I can just avoid clicking on it.
I needed Origin for ts4 to run.

New worlds from cc creators is still being made.
Theorist
Original Poster
#21 Old 27th Jul 2017 at 7:48 PM Last edited by ScaryRob : 27th Jul 2017 at 10:47 PM.
OK, I took the plunge.

My previously mentioned local source for computer games has apparently stopped selling used PC games, for the most part, especially those requiring install codes, like the Sims games, so I went to Amazon.

I got the Sims 3 Starter Pack, which includes the Base Game, the Late Night expansion and the High-End Loft Stuff stuff pack. (Approx. $15)
In order to get free shipping, I added the Sims 3 Expansion Bundle, which includes the World Adventures expansion and the Generations expansion. (Approx. $15)
So for about $32, I got the base game, 3 expansions and a stuff pack - all new, not used. Those are prices I can live with.
According to the Sims 3 Wikipedia page, those three expansions all have some good building tools, so I like that.
I should have these items in about 2 weeks, since the expansion bundle won't be in stock until August 1st.

I'll be curious though how well my 9-year-old PC will run this game, although when I had it built in 2008, it was top of the line and I upgraded the video card and added memory two years ago. According to the Help pages, my computer specs should be able to run the game and all expansions. It runs Sims 2 flawlessly, although I know that doesn't necessarily mean anything in relation to Sims 3.

Thanks for answering most of my questions. I might have a few more from time to time.
 
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