Please help us for June & July 06/20/2017This month we're hoping for a little bit of a boost this month or next, in addition to covering the regular bills, we could benefit from some hardware upgrades. STEX Collector's Set gifts can now be sent to you via digital download as well as regular mail if you wish! Every donation dollar goes toward keeping Simtropolis online and humming along. Your contribution counts! Hardware Upgrades As our website community software improves with more and more features, and as we bolt on additional features such as chat, the increased load to handle all these new toys is taking the server a bit to task. You may have noticed that we'd been forced to temporarily disable the chat as we worked out allocating resources for more optimal performance. Following this, we've applied a number of 'soft' changes such as caching options and experimented with server configurations (nginx as proxy, for example), so the hardware aspect is also an area we'd like to focus on. The last time we upgraded hardware was back in 2012, prior to the release of SC13. Your contribution means a lot! Your donation will go toward helping us to 1.) migrate to a newer server or 2.) at least get some ram/cpu/storage updates and any other infrastructure hardware or services. Donate and Get a Gift or Donate Any Amount Thanks so much! - Dirktator & The Admins
4 posts in this topic
By Cyclone Boom
Got some ideas?
Here's a place where you can recommend any improvements to Simtropolis.
It's about time we had one of these. Even though the site continues to develop, we'd love to hear your thoughts on how it can be further refined and made better for everyone. Whether it be a simple layout/design tweak, or a completely brand new feature, post away in this thread!
While we can't promise everything will be possible or implemented, each idea will be read and considered. I'm sure you'll appreciate there are limitations, both technically and financially.
To report any issues with an existing site feature, or something not working as intended, please instead use the Bugs Thread.
For clarity, please keep one idea per post. Double posts are acceptable if you've more than one idea at once.
Note: To prevent successive replies from auto-merging, you may need to wait 5 minutes.
Give a subheading, describing briefly what the idea is.
Explain the idea -- it helps to give as much detail as possible. Pictures or diagrams are acceptable, but not required.
Why would this be of benefit to the community?
If you value anyone's idea, please Like it to show your support. This helps to give a rough indication of how well an idea is received.
If commenting on an idea, please quote/copy the subheading so it's clear what is being discussed.
Once processed, ideas will be tagged with one of the following:
NOT PLANNED - The idea is appreciated, but at this stage, is not feasible to implement.
INTERNAL REVIEW - We like the idea, and will pursue whether it's currently feasible to implement.
PLANNED - We have decided to implement the idea, and are finding the best ways to go about it.
IMPLEMENTED - The idea has been added as a new site feature!
This will change depending on ongoing progress with implementation.
By Cyclone Boom
With the conclusion of the NAM Showcase, it saw the end of the second ST Challenges season. Now on a break, we’d like to welcome your suggestions and ideas. How can they be improved for the next season? What went well, and what would make the events even more fun and engaging?
We’ve got a few ideas of our own, but specifically we’d like hear your thoughts on:
- New theme ideas: Please post in the "Ideas Bank" topic, where ideas can be collected.
- More challenge types -- E.g. Gameplay tasks, such as population or using / creating certain plugins.
- User-hosted events: Should these be brought back in some form?
- Would it help to raise the image size limit (e.g. to 3 MB per image)?
- Always allow more than one image? Like the NAM Showcase allowing 3 per author.
- Length of the submission / voting periods for the challenge types.
- Thoughts on the current method of voting.
- Should authors be made anonymous until after voting? They could be changed to a "placeholder" account before being revealed.
- Has it worked well so far?
- Any small tweaks?
- Change amounts awarded?
- Expand the places which gain rep (e.g. top 5 or 10)?
- Also for the Best Picture Comp -- Rep for round wins + entering the Hall of Fame?
- How frequently should they run: Is the balance right?
- Run more simultaneous challenges?
- Use the calendar to plan the events a few weeks in advance? Would this make it easier to prepare for entries?
Please also let us know any other suggestions you have.
These events aren’t possible without your participation, so we’d like to give you chance to shape their next direction.
~The Challenges Team
I was wondering if anyone could please point me to some good ploppable flora that I can use. I looked on sc4 devotion and became overwhelmed with all the different choices. Ideally, some trees that are native to more Western Europe than North America will be the best.
By Cyclone Boom
As mentioned in the feedback topic, we'd like to gather suggestions for future challenge themes. We have a few ideas in the pipeline, but would like to develop upcoming events particularly around your city-building interests.
Most challenges thus far have been based on general themes. There's been quite a few, including skyscrapers, transport, rural and recreation scenes. In addition, we're considering introducing gameplay tasks, such as urban planning to solve a problem, or creating custom plugins to meet a set brief. So basically, if you've any new ideas, please also post these below. Even if they sound a bit elaborate or complex, we'd still love to hear them!
The intention is to continue using the Gallery to submit image entries, along with the voting.
When posting an idea, it'd be helpful if you can provide:
A brief summary:
What the challenge would involve / how it might work.
If applicable, how the challenge could be kept fair. For some this might be self-explanatory.
Should the challenge be limited to a particular city-building game (e.g. SC4, C:S), or is it open to any?
Suggest a reasonable submission period given the challenge requirements. The shorter events (i.e. 1-2 weeks) will be more frequently run, but the longer ones should be for more complex challenges.
Please post any ideas and they'll be added to the "Ideas Bank" below for consideration.
Should an idea be selected, we may contact you for further information or assistance.
You may submit as many as you can think of per post (feel free to post again with any new ideas).
Challenge Ideas Bank
Show of Traffic | Transportation | General rules | All games | ~2 weeks
City Showcase | General theme | General rules | All games | ~1 month+
Best Sense of Americana | Country themed | General rules | All games | ~1 week+
City Replica Challenge | Recreation | General rules | All games | ~1 month
Alpine Winter | Rural planning | Require snow, infrastructure built on hilly terrain | All games | ~2 weeks
Sunny Destination | Aesthetics | Cannot use desert mod or palm trees | All games | ~2 weeks
Vanilla Only Challenge | General theme | No custom content allowed | SimCity 4 | ~3 weeks
Space: The final frontier | Sci-fi | General rules | All games | ~2 weeks
Ancient Civilizations | Country themed | General rules | All games | ~2 weeks
Historic Development | Urban planning | Use an established city, with a historic background | SimCity 4 | ~2 weeks
Best Realistic "....." | Recreation | Aim to make as realistic as possible | All games | | ~1 month
Bridges | Transportation | Show one or more bridges crossing over something | All games | ~2 weeks
Railroads | Transportation | Show a train on railroad tracks | All games | ~2 weeks
Complex Design | Urban | Design an urban complex area (e.g. university campus) | All games | ~1 month
Nature Scene | Rural | Only allowed limited use of man-made structures | All games | ~2 weeks
Night Shots | General theme | Image must be taken at night | All games (with night mode) | ~2 weeks
City Tile View | General theme | City tile must be shown in full | All games | ~2 weeks
Waterside | General theme | Image must be dominated by water features | All games | ~2 weeks
Photoshop Challenge | General theme | Image must be edited using a form of software manipulation | All games | ~2 weeks
Non-Photoshop Challenge | General theme | Image cannot be edited using software manipulation tools | All games | ~2 weeks
Animation Challenge | General theme | Image must be animated in some way (e.g. GIF) | All games | ~2 weeks
CoriStar Challenge   | General theme | Represent ST in a city's layout | All games | ~1 month
Essay Challenge | Instructional | Create a written guide to answer the top 5 newbie questions about SC4 | SimCity 4 | ~2 weeks+
How to do it? | Instructional | Explain the steps taken to create an image, so someone else could recreate it | All games | ~1 month
Best Toll Road / Turnpike | Transportation | General Rules | All Games | ~1week+
Simtropolis as an Acronym | Other | Create an acronym using the letters of Simtropolis | Game n/a | ~1 week
Pinned Thread Overhaul | Instructional | Create overview guides to consolidate info in pinned threads | SimCity 4 | ~2 weeks+
GIFted Goodness Drive-In | Recreation | Create a city scene featuring a drive-in theatre, using an animated portion | All games | ~2 weeks
Custom Content Related
Content Creation Challenge | BAT / Lot / Map / Asset | Require multiple images | All games | ~1 week to 1 month
Facelift | Lotting | Enhance any default game lot, without changing the dimensions | SimCity 4 | ~2 weeks
Single Dependency | Lotting | Can only use one selected common prop / texture pack | SimCity 4 | ~1 week to 2 weeks
Modular Complexes | Lotting | Create an integrated set of lots | SimCity 4 | ~2 weeks
Themed Lotting Challenge | Lotting | Create a lot to a specified theme (e.g. parks, transport, RCI) | SimCity 4 | ~2 weeks
NAM Challenge | Content usage | Use the NAM for a specific purpose, such as to showcase or solve a set brief | SimCity 4 | ~1 month
Park & Path Set | Lotting | Create a set of parks and paths which can be used | SimCity 4 | ~1 month
Roundabout Filler | Lotting | Create one for both roundabout sizes, each with the same "style" per entry | SimCity 4 | ~1 month
Classic Model, New Lot | Lotting | An older model that has withstood the test of time should see a new Lot | SimCity 4 | ~2 weeks
Retaining Walls | Lotting | Create a new type of retaining walls | SimCity 4 | ~2 weeks
Transit Buildings | BAT / Modelling | Create a transit building model (e.g. stations: train, subway, bus) | All games | ~1 month
Monuments & Statues | BAT / Modelling | Create a monument or statue model | All games | ~1 month
Diagonals & FAR | BAT / Modelling | Create a form of diagonal building | All games | ~1 month
By Nico Kemal
I were thinking if the following concepts could be added to SC4, somewhat simulating some aspects of real life and also games as Tropico and Hidden Agenda...
Social Divide: Sims may divide into factions: sports teams, soap operas, alignments.... These divides could bring from minor efficiency losses to major civil wars inside the own cities, and also terrorist events and situations. Each type of building would promote a type of alignment in the region adjacent to it, and in places where ''contrary'' alignments'' interceded, there would be conflicts, causing promblems in the regions. Some specific alignments would appear in preset eras, for example, simbots and simtants appearing after 2040 and causing anti-simtant and anti-simbot sentiments, which would force the mayor to isolate them for avoiding a war situation inside his city. Discrimination would cause factions to ''zone in'' in specifical parts of the city, affecting traffic. Further rifts among the alignments would cause ''feud wars'' from alignment to alignment, including from destructive riots in their intersections for simulating the rift amongst them, to bioterror/bombign strikes.
Illegal Ocuppation: Citizens and business would trying ''autozone'' regions of the city, without authorization. Police cars could be necessary for containing them, until proper zoning being done. An anti-occupation ordinance should be implemented, making the jails full of people and causing unrest among poorer sims.
Tax Evading: A certain percentage of tax evasion should happen in the city, thanks to government and police underfunding. Revenue offices should help reduce this according to their coverage. A special ''whisteblower ordinance'' should bring extra money to the city, at the cost of slightly less commercial, industrial and elite housing demmand cap.
Trade Union Building: Reward Building(having X citizens employed, maybe?) Generates some jobs in return for some government spending. Slightly augments mayor rating amonst low and middle income. Allows ''Trade Union Ordinance''. (Plus mayor rating, lesser fire risks in industrial and agricultural areas.)
Civic Center: Civic building. Has a slight park effect, and also a educational and anti-criminal one.
Militia Firing Range: Reward building. (for?) Gives a slight security bonus, but causes traffic and garbage problems. Allows for ''Freemen Security Act''(Reduces criminality drastically at the cost of augmenting unrest and pollution.)
Robot Containers: ''Civic building.'' Container zones for excluding the simbots/simborgs from amongst the ''normal'' population. May diminish unrest but can creates a huge crime spot and traffic problem.
Mutant Camp: ''Civic building.'' Excludes simtants/simaliens from regular population.
Monster Castle: Excludes simspooks from regular population.
Control Post: Similar to a tool booth. But in place of charging money, reduces traffic for augmenting security. An excess of control posts may cause unrest/disapproval amongst population.
Animal Shelter: Reward building. Some effect on garbage and water pollution. May allow for ''Pet Adoption Ordinance'', with slight effects on pollution, and garbage.
Student Union QG: Reward Building(College/University coverage?): Similar to Trade Union, but with more effects in the educated class. Allows ''Student Wing Act''. (Plus mayor rating, less unrest in educated areas?)
Miniluv: Works as a great jail and police department at the same time. Consumes a lot of energy, and lots of ''black cars'' in the traffic.
Minipeace: radioactive building. Generates a lot of tanks in the traffic.
Minitruth: Generates a lot of jobs, and mayor rating, but also garbage.
Miniplenty: Consumes a lot of garbage, energy and water, but also generates a great park and health effect.
ASAT Testing Range: Business Oportunity. An EMP Weapon that fires periodically to the air. May cause the explosion of a major energy facility or some hi-tech industries from time to time.
Nukair. Inc: Business Deal/Reward. Military company which is testing a Nuclear Powered Plane. Comes with a Nukair plane with especial ''Nukair Missions''.
Mega-Church: Business Oportunitty. Causes massive atracction, but may divide city amongst followers and non-followers.
Sect Village: Idem. Besides that, may enter in feud with the Mega-Church.
PENSA Chapter: Reward for high education levels. Has a little park and EQ boosting one. Conflicts with religious and military places.
Presidential Camp House: Reward/Business. Brings a lot of money, but also atracts crime. Gives acess to presidential vehicles with ''presidential missions.''
Villain Tower: Mega-villain tower. Gives a permanent base to a mega-villain. Allow for ''Villain Base Ordinance'', in which, for a little money and mayor rating, the city gains an EQ and Hi-Tech Cap Bonus.
Heroic Hall: Heroic Squad homebase. Allows for ''Oficial Hero Place Ordinance'', in which, for a little security and fire risk, the city gains an agricultural and commerce cap bonus.
PMC HQ: Mercenary group HQ. Provides a free ''special security'' unit, and ''special'' missions.
PI HQ: A small private investigator office. Would serve mostly for displaying factional rifts when clicked, and enabling ''private investigator'' missions.
Indian/Mutant/Robot/Dinossaur Reserve: Reward/Landmark/Business deal with some money bonus, but service demanding. Demolishing them would bring great costs/unrest in the city.
Revenue Office: Civic Building. Some cost and high garbage production. Less garbage would be produced with a special ordinance: ''Online tax forms.''
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