Hey guys, I'm gonna avoid a lot of stuff being discussed here and say that when I came back to this game a few years ago and binge downloaded, it was a massive, massive amount of stuff. Then afterwards learn that I want to use LE and PIMX and ended up having just an insane plugins folder that made it basically too time consuming and required too much attention for me to want to bother with. I had a big problem in overdownloading here as well which didn't help.
I think more standardization in atleast some stuff would help. I see how this could be sort of difficult due to some people not wanting certain things but there are a lot of overlapping dependencies. So I dont know, for example maybe get them all together in categories and have an installer sort of like NAM where you can go through and choose packs/files. So then I knew for me after assembling this horribly huge and messy plugin folder I wanted to unify all my sidewalk and grass. When rsc's mods came out this made that a lot easier for me. What I'm basically saying is, going through 100+ pages of mods without prior knowledge of what can be done in PIMX/LE and the other software used for this game and really not much technical knowledge about the game really screwed me over when it came time to where I wanted to do some custom content of my own. Ways to reduce the grind of downloading would really be great - and I know that when I see pictures from some of our communities amazing members I sit there and I'm like wow, I wish I had his plugins folder. Lol.
I see that stuff being developed by RSC and others looks really promising in getting into one download a massive amount of work on textures and so forth, and I'm super grateful for his work and all the work like this done by others.
And another thing - I took a pretty good bit of time finding and downloading Japanese files as well. I tried downloading the Japanese Street mod and failed - couldn't figure it out and it was pretty frustrating. And I also know that some Japanese content has also been lost from websites your able to download from. And then the whole thing with Gobias. I had to wipe my HD sort of recently. Not thinking I had a backup I then realized Gobias's mods were gone. If I didn't realize I had a backup I would of probably stopped playing if they weren't reuploaded lol. So the legality arguments are interesting to me - I haven't read through all of the legal stuff but in my opinion from an ethical standpoint, I think if a profit isn't being made off someones content (or your own) then theres no problem.
I think the huge amount of time it can take going through all the downloads and extracting and keeping everything neat and tidy and making sure everything is working is a big barrier.
But alas, I am spoiled and do not do the work of creating content or running a website with legal issues to keep in mind. And doing the work of making a lot of these issues easier to deal with is a lot of work in itself! This is just of what I've encountered with all this.