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Mad Poster
#51 Old 18th Nov 2019 at 6:14 AM Last edited by AGuyCalledPi : 18th Nov 2019 at 6:25 AM.
On top of that outdoor lighting model in the game is also very low contrast with bright blue outdoor lighting at night and dull grey-blue tones during daytime. What little there is in terms of exterior shading doesn't seem very aggressive and the problem even continues indoors, where rooms are never quite dark enough when unlit, and never quite bright enough when lit by either natural or artificial light.

I can see why this wasn't a big issue in 2009 when we were all still using low-power LCD monitors, often with significant bleeding from backlights and fairly mediocre colour reproduction, but in the age of HDR OLED panels TS3 has a habit of looking very very dull at all times. Unlike, say, Red Dead Redemption 2 which has great dynamic range meaning it looks and feels very natural in both low-light and bright situations.

Hypocrisy is only okay if I do it.
( Join my dumb Discord server if you're into the whole procrastination thing. But like, maybe tomorrow. )
Forum Resident
#52 Old 18th Nov 2019 at 7:43 AM
I think TS3 looks really beautiful, and has aged quite well. I still find it really visually gorgeous, more so than any of the other sims games. I use a lighting mod because the colours can look a little wishy washy, but I'll stick a couple of unedited ( apart from resizing ) pics from my game in a spoiler. I picked one of my sims, a lovely dark and stormy exterior, and one that is really bright and pretty.

I see a lot of complaints from people who play newer sims, that TS3 sims are all ugly pudding faces, and that you can't make nice looking sims. You can, though without CC due to EA's horrendous default skin, they wont look quite as nice as with a default replacement. I stuck in a sim pic, who isn't slathered in makeup or anything, but just uses a DR Skin, freckles and eyebrows. And eyelashes. TS3 sims can be quite beautiful, you just need to play around with the sliders and take some care.

I found TS4 CAS to be utterly horrible, and I absolutely hated it. I didn't find it at all "intuitive" or whatever the developers used to tout is as. I think it was another big step back, compared to TS3's. I can't agree that the push - pull system is great, I think it's dreadful, and I felt I had less control over my sims creation than I do with TS3's sliders.


♥ Receptacle Refugee ♥
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retired moderator
#53 Old 18th Nov 2019 at 8:18 AM Last edited by joandsarah77 : 18th Nov 2019 at 8:41 AM.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Naus Allien
As much as I appreciate the quality and attention to detail of The Sims 2, I can't go back to it for more than a couple of hours. CAS is criminally limited, time isn't consistent between lots (breaks immersion), the neighborhood is extremely static, build mode is very limited (and requires lots of cheats to even be usable) and I find all Sims kinda samey compared to Sims in 3. Not to mention the graphics, which haven't aged all that well. With some CC, I can make Sims in 3 look amazing (for example: THIS SIM and THIS ONE). I haven't find a way to make Sims in TS2 look presentable, no matter how much CC I use (and CAS CC in TS2 is pretty awful TBH).


There are default face templates and custom sliders for CAS, or do you mean something else? I do envy the shoe swap that sims 3 has. We have to download a 'top only dress' and pair it with a bottom consisting of undies and shoes to be able to 'switch shoes'.

Community Lot Time fixes the time issue.

It's only as static as you play it. Most of us who play sims 2 are rotational players. Sims 3 is suited far more for people who want to focus more on one family and let the hood do its own thing. I think most of us play sims 2 not only enjoy controlling everything, we want to control everything -in-game.

I wish we had an easier build mode, but there are a lot of cheats and some of those can be turned on permanently in our User Start Up Cheat File. For example, angled furniture. I have that on all the time, I just grab and turn with the < > keys.

I see nothing wrong with the graphics? Apart from hood view lot imposters, those suck. But cc has pretty much-fixed anything else.

Quote:
People do forget all the issues The Sims 2 had. I still remember when I couldn't call a repair technician because 100 of them would spawn on my lot and make my game crash. Not to mention the headaches that SecuROM caused when I first tried Bon Voyage. It literally killed my hard drive 1 month after installing it. And corruption was inevitable if you played long enough with a single save, especially back then when I didn't know exactly what caused and what didn't. And there were (and still are) so many tiny bugs. From the memory of "roaches" appearing 6 time in a row, to an endless loop of aspiration fail caused by the game rolling the "roaches" fear over and over (and the Sim having that fear come true over and over).


Not a common problem. I've played sims 2 for 15 years and only once had uncontrollable gardeners spawn. My game crashed after about 50 but it was hilarious while it lasted.

SecuROM isn't really an issue now.

We know better about corruption now, but yes, it's still an issue.

Never seen that last problem either.

These days, honestly it's getting the game to run well and the dreaded pink soup texture memory issue. This effects those of us with gaming computers as well.

Attached what I think are lovely graphics (but that is personal opinion) and pink soup.

Added another picture to show a decent range of CAS CC. CC for CAS comes in all forms, from beautiful to horrible, it depends where you download from. It's only the lot imposters making the background houses horrible that we can't change.
Screenshots

"I dream of a better tomorrow, where chickens can cross the road and not be questioned about their motives." - Unknown
~Call me Jo~
Mad Poster
#54 Old 18th Nov 2019 at 8:44 AM
People always rag on TS2's lot imposters, but I think they're kinda cute. I can see how they'd get in the way if you're going for a nice screenshot and want maximum detail, though. The way TS3 loads and unloads lots makes me want to claw my brains out sometimes, and that's in a game where having multiple lots loaded in is an option at all.

Hypocrisy is only okay if I do it.
( Join my dumb Discord server if you're into the whole procrastination thing. But like, maybe tomorrow. )
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retired moderator
#55 Old 18th Nov 2019 at 8:55 AM
I guess we notice them more now when we are using things like default textures everywhere and reflective water...and then there are the lot imposters.

"I dream of a better tomorrow, where chickens can cross the road and not be questioned about their motives." - Unknown
~Call me Jo~
Mad Poster
#56 Old 18th Nov 2019 at 10:03 AM Last edited by AGuyCalledPi : 18th Nov 2019 at 10:36 AM.
I do remember thinking how it was really neat that they added the lot imposters in with an update, because of course in basegame TS2 you just lived in the void. It makes sense that they realized they could take their fancy 3D map view and render it in the regular game space, too. And making the surrounding lots clickable was a good first step towards what became the open world in TS3, the same way stuff like push-pull walls and prefab rooms in TS3 later become fully functional features in TS4. Maybe there's features in TS4 already that hint towards what TS5 will be like. Maybe the endless bugs and mediocre graphics aren't flaws at all but hints!

Hypocrisy is only okay if I do it.
( Join my dumb Discord server if you're into the whole procrastination thing. But like, maybe tomorrow. )
Theorist
#57 Old 18th Nov 2019 at 11:07 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pary
I think TS3 looks really beautiful, and has aged quite well. -----
I found TS4 CAS to be utterly horrible, and I absolutely hated it. I didn't find it at all "intuitive" or whatever the developers used to tout is as. I think it was another big step back, compared to TS3's. I can't agree that the push - pull system is great, I think it's dreadful, and I felt I had less control over my sims creation than I do with TS3's sliders.


I love the dark and stormy days. And eyelashes!!!!! When I went back to 3 from 4 I was WOW have I missed them! I also find that I can manipulate some areas such as nose bridges and so on much easier and better in 3 than I can in 4.

I seem to recall that the toddlers in 2 were cute. If anyone wants to post a few photos of cuties I would love to see them.
Mad Poster
#58 Old 18th Nov 2019 at 11:18 AM
TS4's CAS has a few quirks that I really can't understand - hard to reach areas are one, but I've had it happen that I'd click a certain part of a face and it'd suddenly reset to some default shape. Then if I'd try to change it back it wouldn't actually let me manipulate it anywhere near as far. There's some pretty strict limits on how much you can actually sculpt the faces. And I do like the click and drag, but it's it's rather imprecise at times. Have they fixed the issue yet where you can't add, change or remove eyelashes? And have they still not added a skintone slider or anything? More hair colours at least?

Truth be told I like TS4's Sims a lot better when they're kept vanilla, compared to TS3's fairly awful puddings, but when modded right I really can't pick one over the other. TS4 can do the cartoon thing pretty well if given a bit of encouragement and you can get it both stylized and realistic with TS3.

Hypocrisy is only okay if I do it.
( Join my dumb Discord server if you're into the whole procrastination thing. But like, maybe tomorrow. )
Needs Coffee
retired moderator
#59 Old 18th Nov 2019 at 11:23 AM
It's rather interesting that they have dialled back the polys with sims 4. The average sims 4 couch has fewer polys than later pack sims 2 ones.
Sims 2 also had many tiny details that they seem to skimp on now. Things like opening the car door(that's a sims 3 lack since 4 has no cars at all which I don't understand) When you cuddle a baby after a bottle they will sometimes burp, but you have to be listening. Subtle things that add a lot, that don't always happen. I think sims 4 tries too hard and makes too many 'look at me!' statements in an effort to be funny. Instead of being charming most simply become annoying.
Like the monster under the bed is a great idea but is way overdone. The family that I play in sims 4, the kid has one every single night. I enjoyed it the first time, wished it didn't happen the second time and become annoyed by the third time. It should take certain things to trigger it, like maybe the child went to bed with low fun or social or had a fight a few hours before bedtime. It doesn't matter how happy she is, she gets a monster under the bed every single night without fail. I have life set on long...

Being able to move rooms and windows is very handy but I know sims 4 has other building issues. Building in sims 3 is good for those who like the grid, I found the multigrid lines confusing with my bad eyes.

These days I think Sims 4 is seen as the downfall of the franchise, everyone else has forgotten what they didn't like about sims 3 since only those who like sims 3 play sims 3 now. Same with Sims 2, those of us who play it are the dedicated. When you are dealing with pink soup as above you better believe we have to be dedicated otherwise we would toss it out the window. I think we are a much more splintered group of 'simmers' than how we were in 2009.

"I dream of a better tomorrow, where chickens can cross the road and not be questioned about their motives." - Unknown
~Call me Jo~
Theorist
#60 Old 18th Nov 2019 at 11:38 AM
I think 4 is the downfall also if there is any. I remember the list of 84 things missing compared to 3 or whatever the number was. I definitely think the animations in 2 are the best and I totally agree that that game has charm the others lack. Sims in 3 are clunky but I still like them. I always think when they stomp up stairs that they look like toddlers with a full load in their diapers! LOL EA had to sacrifice many of the good things in 2 to add the new features in 3. Sadly, if some folks cannot play 3 well now, I cannot imagine what it would be if they had included all and added all they did. Some things had to go in the trade off.

I like the Sims in 4 but one of my biggest turn offs in 4 is those dang non-teen teens!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I do not want to play families as will be irritated when the kids become teens. It is stuff like that that takes my rating of 4 down too many notches. Graphics I like, some build features, some things, but those teens..... just ugh to me!
Needs Coffee
retired moderator
#61 Old 18th Nov 2019 at 11:47 AM
lol, that's funny.
My daughter plays sims 3 -or she would but she says the lag means she doesn't play. I know very little about the game so I can't help her much. :/ I gave her all my Sims 3 disks and would love if she could install them all and if it would play well, but it won't. I pointed out the thread about game load and lag on here but I don't know if she understood it or if it didn't help.

I would like to take the best features of all 4 games, because let's not forget how awesome sims 1 was for its time, and wrap them up into one new game.

"I dream of a better tomorrow, where chickens can cross the road and not be questioned about their motives." - Unknown
~Call me Jo~
Instructor
Original Poster
#62 Old 18th Nov 2019 at 6:35 PM
I have to say, I've been pleasantly surprised how we've all managed to say civil and on topic with this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AGuyCalledPi
TS4's CAS has a few quirks that I really can't understand - hard to reach areas are one, but I've had it happen that I'd click a certain part of a face and it'd suddenly reset to some default shape. Then if I'd try to change it back it wouldn't actually let me manipulate it anywhere near as far. There's some pretty strict limits on how much you can actually sculpt the faces. And I do like the click and drag, but it's it's rather imprecise at times. Have they fixed the issue yet where you can't add, change or remove eyelashes? And have they still not added a skintone slider or anything? More hair colours at least?


My issue with TS4's CAS is how imprecise everything feels. The lack of sliders is one thing, but I agree with Pary that I don't really think the push-pull method is "better". This may be a little unfair comparing vanilla games with mods, but one thing I like about TS3's CAS coupled with MC is the numerical values of the sliders being shown. But even without that, I still feel like I can fine-tune with sliders better than TS4's method of sculpting. If there was one thing I wish I could take from TS4's CAS, it would be the ability to individually manipulate parts of a Sim's body, instead of a general body slider.

I wish there was some way even to better categorize custom sliders in TS3 if nothing else. Everything gets placed in the general head or nose sliders and they really start to get cluttered after a while.

You have been chosen. They will come soon.
Test Subject
#63 Old 18th Nov 2019 at 7:34 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by AGuyCalledPi
I will tell you any day that TS2 is a better game than TS3 but then I'll play TS3 for several hours every week, while I haven't even touched TS2 at all since 2017.


Agree!
Since I was still a kid when playing 1 and 2, I think there is some excitement I felt then that I just can't feel as an adult player. I sometimes go months without playing, partly because I don't have the time, but also because I get my "dose" after a while and need to take a break. In the beginning, although intrigued by the open world and customization, I had a slow computer, and didn't like the look of it. I still find the some of the graphics ugly and inconsistent (often too dark or too light, surfaces shiny and plastic-looking, sims kind of similar-looking if you don't put in a lot of effort when creating them). But it grew on me, however that was thanks to expansions, tons of mods and CC, and a better computer. And when I tried playing 2 again I had gotten so used to the open world and customization that I missed it too much. I think I play the family less and build more than I did in 1 or 2.

I played 1 recently for some nostalgia, but it's been a long time since I played 2, I don't think I even have it installed. I have never been able to get into 4, I boot it up from time to time but I just get bored. I have no problem with the cartoonish look, but find that they could have put some more effort in it as I find most of the objects too blocky and "clean". The amount of objects offered (and the customization) is almost as limited as 1 where there were very few versions of every object, and there is no ability to change the look of the neighborhood, as in 2 or 3. Of course, in 3 I have a lot of CC, and I have almost none in 4 because I haven't had the interest of looking for it, but with the customization in 3 it was easier to make houses look more distinguishable from each other, even with the same objects.
Instructor
Original Poster
#64 Old 18th Nov 2019 at 9:36 PM
One position that I've always maintained as well, with TS2 and TS3 but 3 more so, is that at least the features are there to be tweaked. TS3's features tend to not be as fleshed out as TS2's more refined concepts, but again at least they're there. Should we really have to expect mods to fix what EA breaks or doesn't add? No, of course not. However, we have the option to tweak those features as we please. And TS3's customizable nature makes it even better.

But even then, mods can't add whole new systems to the game. TS4 doesn't have vehicles, and no mod can add fully functional cars and a road system to the game. No mod can add a completely open world to the game. You can't fundamentally change the emotions system that's plastered all over the game. And I genuinely feel bad for TS4 players, because I feel about 3/4 of them don't realize how much less they're getting. I wish they could have the same in-depth features that we've grown accustomed to. That's why I tend to be very critical of EA.

You have been chosen. They will come soon.
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retired moderator
#65 Old 18th Nov 2019 at 11:11 PM
I don't see why we can't say what we like or dislike in the various sims games without someone getting mad. It's the same as hating or liking olives, either you do or you don't. It's just personal taste. Certainly though if something that is being criticized has since been fixed by custom content, mod or even by EA in a patch (they did implement toddlers very well in sims 4 eventually!) I think that is worth being said because for sure those of us who play one game extensively might not be aware when we criticize a certain feature of the other games that something has been fixed or improved upon. If it's been fixed I don't think it matters who fixed it. I think being an older player helps, honestly if someone doesn't like Sims 2 it doesn't bother me unless they are disliking a feature that I know has been fixed. Dislike it for standing ongoing reasons, not perceived ones.

With that said @Naus Allien I still want to know if you dislike my graphics and why? I'm interested to know. If you dislike my pictures that is fine too, it honestly doesn't bother me. I love my game but nobody else has to.

I think those of us who have played all the games have a much better understanding of what we are getting and not getting. The serious vs the casual players.

Mods can certainly help a lot, but no they won't change some of those basics.

"I dream of a better tomorrow, where chickens can cross the road and not be questioned about their motives." - Unknown
~Call me Jo~
Alchemist
#66 Old 18th Nov 2019 at 11:39 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by AGuyCalledPi
I will tell you any day that TS2 is a better game than TS3 but then I'll play TS3 for several hours every week, while I haven't even touched TS2 at all since 2017.


I feel so pleased seeing my situation described perfectly.

I think it's the case that I've played The Sims 2 since 2005 and I have done literally everything there is to do, so everytime I play it the scenarios are just more f*cked up each time, like it used to be fun to just play something that resembled Jim Carrey's movie Yes Man or the tv-show New Girl. Just have an apartment or a cute house, date someone handsome, have kids, do all that.

Now when I play they usually live in a radioactive field, in a bunker, a submarine or a sky-house. Zombie apocalypse happening, maybe a Hunger Games scenario that at least one kid from each generation gets sacrificed. Kill all hired service people just for fun. Start a restaurant that only sells gelato. Build the most dirty looking swimming pool lots or the most obscure night clubs etc. Have the sims dressed in really weird fashion because it's the ''future''. It's all fun, but I think it says something about how much I've overplayed The Sims 2.

what does his name even mean?
Mad Poster
#67 Old 18th Nov 2019 at 11:55 PM
I don't understand why you TS2 people put so much effort in trying to improve TS2 graphics but won't give HBAO+ a try.


Sanity is overrated.

Nitromon is a type of Pokemon encountered in the Pokemon Nitrome Version series.

There. Mystery solved.
Needs Coffee
retired moderator
#68 Old 19th Nov 2019 at 12:20 AM
@nitromon I am looking at that video and don't see what I am supposed to be seeing? It actually looks very similar to my game except I use a lot more CAS custom content.

I just asked my tech friend who is helping me with the pink soup, she says I actually do have ambient occlusion set in the Nvidia control panel but done a different way so no wonder it looks like my game lol. So yeah, that is how my game looks + a bucket load more CC. I have about 10-11 gigs right now but honestly I really want 12-14 gigs but I need to get this pink soup under control first. The other lighting effect I didn't care for nor the new blur out mod that makes things blur in the distance, just personal prfrence. Otherwise I have moving sky clouds, horizons, the pond water mod.

"I dream of a better tomorrow, where chickens can cross the road and not be questioned about their motives." - Unknown
~Call me Jo~
Inventor
#69 Old 19th Nov 2019 at 2:01 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by joandsarah77
With that said @Naus Allien I still want to know if you dislike my graphics and why? I'm interested to know. If you dislike my pictures that is fine too, it honestly doesn't bother me. I love my game but nobody else has to.


Your game looks good, but I still think The Sims 2 looks outdated compared to other Sims games. Water, for example, looks really bad unless you have that mod that replaces the water shader for the one from Castaways (though it's kinda tricky to use). The only graphic aspect that has aged well are objects (which were really high poly for their time).

I have tried multiple mods and tools to improve the graphics, but a lot of them are poorly optimized and have an impact on performance (like ambient occlusion). This is the exact same reason why I don't use reShade or any post-processing tool. I want to play at consistent 60 FPS and all those tools and tricks make performance drop by at least 10% or more.

The Sims 2 was released in a weird transitional era (from 6th to 7th generation) so certain aspects that we now take for granted are absent in the game.
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retired moderator
#70 Old 19th Nov 2019 at 2:56 AM Last edited by joandsarah77 : 19th Nov 2019 at 3:10 AM.
Fair enough.

Here is my water. I did have a lovely ocean overlay but it caused me more pink flashing so I had to remove it, it changed the ocean colour to more of a turquoise. I use the pond mod but not Voeille's ocean water mod due to personal preference. I like how my ocean looks but do miss that overlay.

First two are hood view ocean and the second two are lot view ponds. The ocean here is greyer because it's reflecting the sky and rocks. My picture higher up had the turquose ocean from lot view.
Screenshots

"I dream of a better tomorrow, where chickens can cross the road and not be questioned about their motives." - Unknown
~Call me Jo~
Mad Poster
#71 Old 19th Nov 2019 at 4:27 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by nitromon
I don't understand why you TS2 people put so much effort in trying to improve TS2 graphics but won't give HBAO+ a try.

Yeah that HBAO is pretty much gorgeous. Makes it look like TS3 in a way.

Hypocrisy is only okay if I do it.
( Join my dumb Discord server if you're into the whole procrastination thing. But like, maybe tomorrow. )
Theorist
#72 Old 19th Nov 2019 at 7:30 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by joandsarah77
Fair enough.

Here is my water. I did have a lovely ocean overlay but it caused me more pink flashing so I had to remove it, it changed the ocean colour to more of a turquoise. I use the pond mod but not Voeille's ocean water mod due to personal preference. I like how my ocean looks but do miss that overlay.

First two are hood view ocean and the second two are lot view ponds. The ocean here is greyer because it's reflecting the sky and rocks. My picture higher up had the turquose ocean from lot view.


The game looks very good in those photos! Sweet!
Top Secret Researcher
#73 Old 19th Nov 2019 at 10:52 AM
I don't think graphics are that bad for a 2009 game. The thing that is bad is the art style.
As opposed to sims 4 which is opposite of sims 3, where graphics are really bad for 2014 game, but the art style is consistent and will age well.

The thing I like about sims 3 is the flexibility of outdoor lighting and world atmosphere. With it's live editing of weather, clouds, sun, moon, stars, sky, shadows, ambience, fog and lighting as well as actual world tool that we have, anything you can think of can essentially be made and it will look unlike anything else in the game before. It's pretty obvious that EA/Maxis has put focus on the world itself rather than on the sims, and it shows.

The sims 3 is honestly one of the most atmospheric games from that era. Seasons help a lot as well.
As for the sims themselves... all I can say is that they did it well next time they could and that's in Medieval spinoff. But it was too late for sims 3 to change it's models and shaders at that point.
Theorist
#74 Old 19th Nov 2019 at 11:35 AM
The Sims in Medieval were a wonderful step up and many of us hoped 4 was heading in that direction. Maybe 5 if there is one will turn back to that? Or who knows they might do a total cartoon or anime or who knows what look just to be different? (!!!!! no thanks). At least Rachel will not be trying to sell emotions all the time!

I actually would love a true Medieval Sims as much as it could be done. No electronics. Carts and horses transportation. Full build mode. And none of that start over each time BS. And more adult themes like done there. And a world builder. Optimize 3 and do a Medieval redo with open world and CASt. Yes I am dreaming. But that I would buy and play for sure!

If 4 is killing the series, that might bring some life back into it?
Top Secret Researcher
#75 Old 19th Nov 2019 at 12:13 PM
Same sweetie, same. A true medieval version of sims 3 with actual medieval sims... one can only dream.
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