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Forum Resident
#51 Old 19th Apr 2012 at 10:48 AM
I'd love it if we were able to set season lengths and also seasons beyond spring-summer-autumn-winter. What I mean by that is: seasons work in a 20-day cycle on normal lifespan, with the un-adjusted length of five days a season (like TS2). However, if you wanted one season to be dominant over the other, you could use sliders to adjust the season lengths, so one world could end up with spring (8 days), summer (4 days), autumn (6 days), winter (2 days), the shorter seasons being enough to affect temperature but not weather (so you'd get colder but not necessarily snowy winters). Setting any season lengths to zero would ensure that world doesn't get that season, and is set on a world-by-world basis with different weather set for the EA-made worlds.

Seasons beyond the regular four: seasons are split in to varying temperatures and their dominant weather effects. Summers can be hot and humid/stormy, or cooler but sunnier. Autumn and spring can factor in some snow, which along with a winter set with blizzards would give a long snowy season. You could set Twinbrook, for example, with all seasons with rain giving quite gloomy, constantly overcast weather for that world.

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Field Researcher
#52 Old 19th Apr 2012 at 11:15 AM Last edited by sierrakusterbeck : 19th Apr 2012 at 2:04 PM.
I'd love hurricanes that could flood the streets and sims could have a few days off from work and school since the weather is so intense. I remember Hurricane Katrina a few years ago when I got a week and a half off from school ^.^
And umbrellas for when it rains would be adorable. Your kids could run out to the school bus with their umbrellas and a "Soaked" moodlet, and other sims that forgot to put umbrellas in their inventory would have to come home with a newspaper over there head (didn't they have that in the Sims 2 for Game Cube? Or did that even have weather? Haven't played it in yeeeaaars heh).
Rogue Redeemer
retired moderator
#53 Old 19th Apr 2012 at 11:50 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by katya_stevens
Seasons beyond the regular four: seasons are split in to varying temperatures and their dominant weather effects. Summers can be hot and humid/stormy, or cooler but sunnier.


This could actually be very possible, since already WA had heat-wave effects and sand swirling in the wind (though the latter is a small effect)!

About tornadoes, floods and other very... disaster-y extreme conditions, I don't see that happening since The Sims is a generally considered as a light-hearted game (in this aspect very different from SimCity which has all disasters imaginable ).
But having said that, in the game files you'll already find hidden effects that have INSANELY HUGE and loud lightning strikes (10x more intense than in TS2) and incoming storm ambient sound effect which sounds very much like an incoming hurricane. Oh, and then there are those massive earthquakes in AMB which occur in high-level firefighter career.

So even though it's quite unlikely that this EP would have Sim City scale catastrophes and sims left fighting for survival, there are indications that TS3 weather would be more intense and varied than in TS2 Seasons. Let's just hope that we'll get a nice balance of intensity as well as fun interactive stuff (bring back the ice rink and soccer)!
Retired
retired moderator
#54 Old 19th Apr 2012 at 2:25 PM
Quote:
On a random idea note, how about seasonal holidays? Not holidays from the real life, but made up seasonal celebrations and gatherings around the town!

This would be a great way to bring back a lot of quirky old school content. "Mascot Day" - "Social Bunny's Eve" - Grilled Cheese Day.

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Mad Poster
Original Poster
#55 Old 19th Apr 2012 at 2:38 PM
Don't forget the falling meteorite, and meteor showers.

There are a few more natural disasters that are possible, like a flash flood for example. They just have to make puddles appear everywhere, with some heavy rain) and take them away eventually. Imagine it's raining, and your Sim family is in the basement, and you see puddles slowly start to appear in basements, until it completely full of water.

A sand storm is possible, in Egypt. Just make the town really tan and foggy, with a few sprite here and there.

And, of course Alien invasions, where they take a random Teen+ Sim (possibly yours) from their home in the night (it can't be stopped) and take them away, and wipes their memory, relationships, etc., and replaces it all with the childish moodlet.

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Scholar
#56 Old 19th Apr 2012 at 2:39 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by rian90
... Plus, weather in Florida is boring (unless a hurricane comes) so would like to 'escape' from real life with a few weather related disasters.


Can totally agree with this. I live in FL and there are 2 seasons, Hot and Hot & Humid. Fall & Winter are practically nonexistent.

I enjoyed the Seasons EP in S2 just because it broke from my RL everyday weather. The only chance I have of seeing snow is when I visit relatives in Virginia.
Mad Poster
#57 Old 19th Apr 2012 at 3:31 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by matrix54
There was a bunch of terrain found in the game files in regard to seasons changes. When extracted, and used in CAW, they sort of layer on other paint, and give the terrain a new feel. I used spring grass, and it adds little small patches of flowers/tufts of grass. There's terrain for winter grass, something in regards to rocks. It's from Martine (I think), and on the internet somewhere. Google will do just fine.


This isn't very good news because some areas have dry season and rainy season. During rainy season everything is green and fresh because of the rain water, even during "winter" months. Dry season is the oppsite and everything dries up. Also, how would this go with desert neighbourhoods like Egypt.
Top Secret Researcher
#58 Old 19th Apr 2012 at 4:11 PM
The engine I work with has the ability to place decals in the game. I am not sure if this would work with the Sims worlds though. We build a level, assign terrains to that level. Then we can go in and place decals that are triggered by certain events. So we can build a world with a nice lush grass, then have something in the game trigger the decals to appear which add brown spots or an overlay to the lush grass making it look brown, covered with scattered leaves, or in some cases with blown up debris. Other triggers would remove these or change them. Many games use these to add temporary items to a game. For example, if you are playing a game where you are investigating, you might enter the same level, find blood or fingerprints on the floor, come back later and those are gone. We can also attach models (trees, grass clumps, flowers, other vegetation) to each texture. So if I attach a pretty flower to a grass texture, the flowers will spawn whenever I lay down that particular texture. I can adjust the density of the flowers so I can make a field covered with wildflowers or scatter a few within a village. These items are billboards, which is what we see in Sims 3...they turn as you walk around them, so really low poly flat models that use little power. We can also add on accumulation...have not done this yet. This would allow for snow and sediment to accumulate on rocks, terrain, models, etc. I have no idea how it works, but it looks very pretty in the videos.

The big problem I see with this is with custom worlds. While the terrains from EA might have data in them to identify whether they are rock, sand, whatever (obviously they do because sims can dig in sand), custom terrains may not have this designation. It might mean a trip back to CAW to either replace custom textures or hopefully, the ability to assign type to them.

I imagine though if the engine we use, which is not created by a big multi-billion dollar company, can do all this, then most likely EA can handle it without over processing our computers. As for the large world, EA makes good use of fade and levels of detail so my guess is that things like snowfall or rainfall would fade out as you move away from your Sim, just like houses and vegetation already do. Besides, rain and snow do not have to be actually 3d models of a raindrop or snowflake, just an illusion of rain or snow.

I suspect though that EA will make the entire process a little simpler and less detailed, which I guess is okay. I hope they will concentrate on how weather affects the sims with some of the ideas people have suggested above. I love the idea of power outages, shoveling snow, and other things that disrupt our Sims lives. Life is far too easy now unless you are a magician or a sculptor!


Quote:
Originally Posted by crocobaura
This isn't very good news because some areas have dry season and rainy season. During rainy season everything is green and fresh because of the rain water, even during "winter" months. Dry season is the oppsite and everything dries up. Also, how would this go with desert neighbourhoods like Egypt.


Desert rock/sand would not change, regardless of the weather. Notice the green valley in Egypt. That could possibly become brown when dry by adding 'spots' of brown to the valley and green when wet. Egypt's climates really are just dry vs wet rather than our temperate seasons. Now, if they had flowering cactus in the desert, that could bloom in the spring but at this time, they haven't added it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cameranutz2
I enjoyed the Seasons EP in S2 just because it broke from my RL everyday weather. The only chance I have of seeing snow is when I visit relatives in Virginia.


Yes! I used to make it winter in Sims 2 in the middle of hot Florida summers just to cool off! LOL I also change my computer wallpaper to a snowy scene. It helps..until I go outside.
Instructor
#59 Old 19th Apr 2012 at 4:14 PM
Not to get you all excited but i think the weather EP will be made for the sims 3. EA is like Mr.Krabs from Spongebob. they won't miss the chance of getting all the money they can from simmers )
Forum Resident
#60 Old 19th Apr 2012 at 4:24 PM
Being a Brit, and living on an island (makes for unpredictable weather), makes me hugely obsessed with the weather. It's the conversation starter du jour in this country; 'Oooh, isn't the weather horrible/nice/unusual today?'

Didn't they have hailstorms in TS2? I'm sure they did, and unless I'm imagining it, they always made me laugh.

Seasons was my favourite EP because it just changed so much without you having to make your sim do specific things in order to experience new game content; for example, most EPs can be ignored, but Seasons couldn't. And I loved that.

I'd be surprised if they didn't let us set our own length for seasons in each town.
Mad Poster
Original Poster
#61 Old 19th Apr 2012 at 5:49 PM
^For above (in regards to seasonal terrain) EA could have a few files in a folder or something that allows for easy editing to the terrain. Maybe in the world folders, or whatever the process would be, and under certain weather conditions, it would load those as a temporary replacement to the files for the seasons. It would change the look of the town, slightly, and it wouldn't tear the town apart for legacy hoods. It'd also be easy editing for EA for other worlds, and for us, because it's just image replacements.

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Top Secret Researcher
#62 Old 19th Apr 2012 at 5:56 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiwi_tea
This would be a great way to bring back a lot of quirky old school content. "Mascot Day" - "Social Bunny's Eve" - Grilled Cheese Day.


I would love to see stuff like that introduced!


Quote:
Originally Posted by matrix54
And, of course Alien invasions, where they take a random Teen+ Sim (possibly yours) from their home in the night (it can't be stopped) and take them away, and wipes their memory, relationships, etc., and replaces it all with the childish moodlet.


Don't tease

TS3 aliens? Finally! Now give us OFB and proper apartments, damnit! - EA, you are breaking my heart. - I give up.
Rogue Redeemer
retired moderator
#63 Old 19th Apr 2012 at 5:57 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by rian90
The big problem I see with this is with custom worlds. While the terrains from EA might have data in them to identify whether they are rock, sand, whatever (obviously they do because sims can dig in sand), custom terrains may not have this designation. It might mean a trip back to CAW to either replace custom textures or hopefully, the ability to assign type to them.


Actually, in CAW you'll have to choose the sound effect for all custom terrains too. There are only 5 basic terrains available in CAW, so the rest are added from whatever resource files you have for new textures (like the ones extracted from other EA worlds). And actually in that selection of sounds you do have snow and ice available already!

But they can't really make snow just a terrain texture, as terrain textures are permanent... but they made snow coats in TS2 already, and it was not terrain textures but a separate thing (no idea about more specific info). It was not just a flat white piece of terrain paint, but it was a thick, solid coat on which sims would leave footprints and trails. It also had sound effects while sims were moving on it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rian90
I imagine though if the engine we use, which is not created by a big multi-billion dollar company, can do all this, then most likely EA can handle it without over processing our computers. As for the large world, EA makes good use of fade and levels of detail so my guess is that things like snowfall or rainfall would fade out as you move away from your Sim, just like houses and vegetation already do. Besides, rain and snow do not have to be actually 3d models of a raindrop or snowflake, just an illusion of rain or snow.


In the open world of TS3 the snow would simply mean that the snow coat's thickness would render depending on the position of the camera, which is the basic principle in TS3 anyway, and players can optimize these settings to fit their systems. So I don't believe that this EP theme would really be a performance issue with today's computers as they already made very similar stuff years ago for TS2, for less powerful computers. Also the weather and seasons is mostly just visual effects, apart from the snow coat, fallen leaves and puddles (which we already have). Actually, all those butterflies flying around our worlds probably take more effort to render than a rain visual effect would. This is because the butterflies have textures, meshes and animation. Visual effects don't. And the visuals of the rain, lightnings and snow flakes are just like an invisible curtain in front of the camera, like a lens which shows the drops etc. Again, routing issues and other EA screw-ups related to game play are more likely to cause lag than visuals.
Top Secret Researcher
#64 Old 19th Apr 2012 at 6:59 PM
I didn't realize that we had all that already. I use CAW extensively but guess I never connected the ice/snow choices for footprints to a weather EP. Very cool though! I agree that EA should be able to do this without much trouble and without causing issues on our computers, as long as our computers are up to the minimum standards...well, for all EPs, not just one. I think a lot of issues are due to routing issues in EA worlds as well as people putting all EPs on their computers and EA not giving us minimum specs for all the EPs. Well, that and custom content/mods.

I rather wonder if EA's excuse that they couldn't get weather to work for the base game was really just a way of saying they want to sell a separate pack for marketing reasons...which is fine and dandy, just wish they would be honest....yeah, right.
Scholar
#65 Old 19th Apr 2012 at 11:43 PM Last edited by bassoon_crazy : 20th Apr 2012 at 11:44 PM. Reason: Fixed up my ideal seasons image.
Quote:
Originally Posted by rian90
As for the large world, EA makes good use of fade and levels of detail so my guess is that things like snowfall or rainfall would fade out as you move away from your Sim, just like houses and vegetation already do. Besides, rain and snow do not have to be actually 3d models of a raindrop or snowflake, just an illusion of rain or snow.


I've heard that precipitation in The Sims 2 Seasons was actually just an illusion, the snow and rain only fell within a short radius of the camera. So there's already no issue there.

Quote:
I suspect though that EA will make the entire process a little simpler and less detailed, which I guess is okay.


I really hope not. I think that with The Sims 3 and all of its atmospheric effects the seasons and weather have a chance of looking much more realistic.

I mean... Imagine autumn looking like this:



Anyway, with that image I posted, I have messed around with CAW further and created my idea of what I think that the four seasons should look like in The Sims 3.



Description:

Winter: Needs to be brown, very brown. Much fewer trees that remain green, and the majority of shrubs/bushes should either turn brown or lose leafs (obviously not pictured here).

Spring: Needs lots of flowers, and for the trees and plants that they decide not to bloom the leafs on them should be light green. In the picture I only had one kind of tree to use to show budded trees, obviously Seasons should have many more than that.

Summer: Obviously just needs to be very green. There would still be flowers but not anywhere near as much as Spring.

Autumn: Like in the picture, trees need to be very vibrant. Less of the kind in The Sims 2 where they were partially green, partially yellow, partially brown. We want it to look beautiful. Also the cloudy atmosphere just fits autumn too perfectly. I'd hate to say that it should be cloudy the whole season but it should be the majority of the time.

For comparison, I created an (exaggerated, but not purposefully) version that is similar to The Sims 2's Seasons, and it shows what needs to be improved compared to the ones above:



Obviously The Sims 2 Seasons was not that bad, but in many ways it was. Like how Spring and Summer looked exactly the same (outside of lighting). I still very much loved The Sims 2 Seasons, I think they did an awesome job with it. However, with The Sims 3 and after a few years to develop the seasons EP, I have higher expectations. I do want the lighting to change between seasons, but I think there's much more to Spring and Summer than lighting changes.

♫ Keeping this here until EA gives us a proper playable woodwind/brass instrument ♫
Field Researcher
#66 Old 20th Apr 2012 at 12:33 AM
I would want:

-Sickness (getting the common cold, the flu. Flu/cold season)

-Sick days and SNOW days

-Heat wave (Everybody is dying of heat and wants to go swimming/take cold baths/play in sprinkler) And if we get heat wave, I would want a kiddie pool for my toddlers.

-Swimmable oceans

-When it snows, I want to be able to ice skate on my pools

-The option to tan on the beach, and get a nice tan or sunburned

-Rake and jump in leaves

-Kiss under the mistletoe

-Snuggle by the fire (during the winter months)

-Sledding (I want my dogs to be able to pull toddlers and children in sleds, and maybe the horses too!)

-Snowboarding/skiing

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Mad Poster
#67 Old 20th Apr 2012 at 12:52 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpookyOkyBatGirl
-Sledding (I want my dogs to be able to pull toddlers and children in sleds, and maybe the horses too!)


Apparently EA only makes EPs compatible with basegame, so that might not be doable since it requires Pets. But I think it would be nice if other sims could pull those sleds too.
Field Researcher
#68 Old 20th Apr 2012 at 1:07 AM
I want different types of rain as in sprinkle, rain, heavy rain. Also similar thing with snow; light snow (flurries), snow, heavy snow, and blizzard.
I want my sims to be able to hold an umbrella when it rains if they have one in their inventory. I also want snow days, especially for school.
I would like sims to be able to get the common cold or the flu. I want to be able to change the rather for a particular world/town/city whatever you want to call it. I want to choose how high the temperature can get and how low it can get. I want to be able to change how much snow or rain it gets if any. That way I can make all kinds of different climates.
I want snow to be able to pile up on roofs and cars. I want lakes to freeze over and your sims can ice skate or go ice fishing on them. I want to be able to choose outer wear per season or even better what temperature it is outside. After all you don't wear a coat in the summer or go out in shorts during the winter.
I want sledding, snow ball fights, snow angels, snow men, raking leaves, jumping in leaves, ice fishing, ice skating, roller skating, and skiing. If there is sports with seasons I would like ice hockey, basketball, soccer, tennis, and some others. Oh and to be able to swim in oceans and lakes as well.
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Mad Poster
#69 Old 20th Apr 2012 at 6:04 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by kristie91
I want different types of rain as in sprinkle, rain, heavy rain.


Heavy raaaaaiiiinnnn . . . HEAVY RAAAAAAIIIINNNNN . . .

*ahem* Sorry. Got lost for a moment there. ;D

I believe that in TS2 we had two weather types for both rain and snow - light rain and HEAVY RAAAIAIAIANNANANNNNN . . . as well as light snow and heavy snow.

Personally I can picture something akin to the WA "dunes" . . . snowdrifts and suchlike. Use a shovel to clear your walk or you may fall over!


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Rogue Redeemer
retired moderator
#70 Old 20th Apr 2012 at 8:19 AM
Talkin' bout rain, if anyone is curious to see the hidden rain and snow effects in your own game, take a look at this video which tells you how to do it.
Forum Resident
#71 Old 20th Apr 2012 at 12:37 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpookyOkyBatGirl
-When it snows, I want to be able to ice skate on my pools


THIS. Yes please.
Field Researcher
#72 Old 20th Apr 2012 at 2:33 PM
Love the ideas here so far!!

I want my sims to get wet/or get a cold if they go outside while it's raining without an umbrella.
Mad Poster
Original Poster
#73 Old 20th Apr 2012 at 2:38 PM
*about skating on pools*

At least we wouldn't have to add another lot in town. Just go to the pool.

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Lab Assistant
#74 Old 20th Apr 2012 at 7:14 PM
Love all the ideas so far. Maybe waterslides could happen? I'm not even exaggerating when I say I would most likely become aroused if I saw customisable waterslides in the game, or at least ones that aren't like 8ft and just turn to the right.

Also, summer sports would be fantastic, when seasons are implemented; I would love to see Sims jogging wearing sweatbands and drinking water as they dehydrated their little virtual selves, and Sims going to the beach to play volleyball or play tennis in courts. It will be nice to see nature dying and then growing through the year as well, I think this will definitely add another layer of realism to the game. It certainly did with Seasons in the Sims 2.
Theorist
#75 Old 20th Apr 2012 at 9:15 PM
I'd love to ice skate on my pool as well, but to be more realistic I'd rather snow covers..Look at what happened in Home Alone 2 I believe when the baddy's skated over the pool xD
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