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domoarigoto

Designing for Dummies

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So i've i've been playing SC4 for years and my download library of custom buildings is massive. It has gotten to the point where i can't find anything overly exciting on the exchanges and i want to start creating some of my own buildings and as an architecture major i can hopefully put some of my projects into the game and on line but i don't know what software to use and how to use it so i can create my own original buildings. i have programs like Rhino and autodesk programs if they can be used at all. if anyone knows where to look or tutorials please let me know. I appreciate it!!

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You are going to have to get Gmax(at least), this allows you to get the BAT, the building architect tool and really they are one in the same, literally, opening the BAT from your desktop opens gmax automatically.

You might recognize gmax, it is the program that is used for design, or at least recognize the format. BAT(building architect tool) is what is used to import and export your objects(if i understand what others have been saying properly) to and from gmax. Then you will need a third program, the SC4 plugin manager.

You may have a hard time getting the plugin manager(PIM) to run though if you are running Win7, I did, I had to download the msvcp71.dll from the link int he readme, but dropped it into the system32 file folder as the directions stated, which is obviously not correct, you must drop it into the sc4PIM file folder instead and voila problem solved. I do not like dealing with .dll files, my PC is my baby, so it was a leap of faith for me to even download the thing, but in the end it did actually pay off and the program now works perfectly.

The link to the gmax is here:

http://www.turbosquid.com/gmax

You must register with turbosquid to get the serial number to activate the gmax program, no problem.

The link to the BAT(building architect tool) is here courtesy of jeronij:

http://sc4devotion.com/forums/index.php?page=14

To ensure that this works well, make sure to get BOTH of the patches for simcity, and make sure your sim city is updated to version 1.1.640, checkt his by going to your simcity directory and looking n your apps folder for the simcity.exe and checking its properties and under the "details" tab.

You need the plugin manager, the link is here:

http://sc4devotion.com/csxlex/lex_filedesc.php?lotGET=2260

This is the program you need the .dll file for, when you get it make sure to drop it right into the SC4PIM file folder. I do not yet know how this program works I just know it is needed to make your objects functional in game, you need it.

Lastly the Lot editor, the link is here again courtesy of jeronij:

http://sc4devotion.com/forums/index.php?page=9

Since you have downloaded a bunch of things already, no doubt you have obtained a good amount of dependencies, this where you will be able to put them to use, just make sure to credit the people who made them if you even put your creations "out there".

Last note, you have to install gmax before you can install the BAT or the BAT will throw a fit and you will be denied.

Also worth mentioning the SC4terraformer, the process for this is similar to the plugin manager. Once it is downloaded you must drop the very same .dll file into it's folder that you had to get for the plugin manager.

The link to the terraformer is here:

http://sc4devotion.com/csxlex/lex_filedesc.php?lotGET=731

I think that covers it all. I hope it does anyway.

AS ALWAYS, READ THE README FILES, sometimes the information listed within is slightly off, but it will always guide you in the right direction, with a little willpower to contiue you will find the right way through.

I run win7 so the plugin manager nor the terraformer would work for me at all until I did. Like I said, leap of faith. I just now got all those programs and got them all working, not 5 minutes ago. Took me hours to comprehend all the running around I had to do, that is pure determination. Now all I need to do is learn or be taught how to use them.

Good luck in your endeavours. I hope to see your designs here too.

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You need the plugin manager, the link is here:

http://sc4devotion.c...php?lotGET=2260

This is the program you need the .dll file for, when you get it make sure to drop it right into the SC4PIM file folder. I do not yet know how this program works I just know it is needed to make your objects functional in game, you need it.

I should tell you that this download is optional though. The BAT installer gives you the Maxis Plugin Manager, which IMO is better when getting started, because it is more intuitive and simple, it has some limitations when compared to the SC4PIM, though.

There is a good tutorial for learning to use BAT in the Omnibus, called BAT Essentials, you should take a look at it to get an idea of how to use the program, after that it's all by yourself, and you will learn as you make new models. If you wish to start BATing, then you should also consider opening your BAT thread to get feedback, especially if you wish to release what you make.

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As an architecture major, you should be eligible for a free copy of the latest 3D Studio Max, which you should use instead of gmax. In fact, gmax is nothing but an outdated, watered-down version of 3dsmax with many shortcomings, bugs, and limitations anyway. It can still be used to great effect if you know your way around the bugs and limitations, but 3dsmax will give you access to better tools, superior (and faster) renderers, and is less buggy. Together with SiMFox' Bat4Max script, you can export SC4 models directly from 3dsmax.

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  • Original Poster
  • Thank you all for your help! I will get gmax etc and since i already have 3ds max i will def try to test out moving between the multiple programs.

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  • Original Poster
  • so i am working through these programs and i can get the sc4 plug-in manager to open but it is not the extended on that allows me to preview. . . not really sure what im doing at all :P

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  • Original Poster
  • ok now i have a question, i already have a 3ds model,. . . what do i do with it, i cant seem to find how to take it from the designing software into the sc4 software like the plugin manager and such :P

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    You may have to hop over the SC4devotion to find the 3ds Max rendering script. Otherwise, try importing your model into gmax, then use the BAT gamepack to render it. You do this by opening gmax as the BAT.

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    As an architecture major, you should be eligible for a free copy of the latest 3D Studio Max, which you should use instead of gmax. In fact, gmax is nothing but an outdated, watered-down version of 3dsmax with many shortcomings, bugs, and limitations anyway. It can still be used to great effect if you know your way around the bugs and limitations, but 3dsmax will give you access to better tools, superior (and faster) renderers, and is less buggy. Together with SiMFox' Bat4Max script, you can export SC4 models directly from 3dsmax.

    How can I make buildings with 3ds max? Can you teach me?

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    Start with the BAT essentials tutorial.  gmax is an old, cut-down version of 3DS Max, so just use your head and extend the tutorial using the regular 3DS Max.  When it comes to exporting the model for use in the game you might actually have to import your model into the BAT game pack to render it properly for SC4.  The tutorial is in the Omnibus along with much other material on modelling.

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