This thread will include everything I create and share for CS, either in progress or already finished. I’m slow so I won’t add much often, but every now and then I’m tempted to enhance the game and add a little to the community
Now I’m making an enhanced temperate theme that is supposed to look lush, designed for maps full of forests and eco cities with lots of nature beauty instead of dirty factories. It’s basically finished, but it’s never bad to ask for some feedback before releasing. I changed all textures and normals except for moon, gravel, and pavement, and tried to make them as little repetitive as possible, and balance a nice look between zoomed in and zoomed out views.
Ruined is supposed to look like dirt, not like sand or dry ground. I changed alpha of ruined in a way that stops it from appearing under cliff (I never liked it). Field is fine, so I left it very noticeable, just changed the colour. I hope my alphas make a natural and smooth transitions between textures. Oil and ore areas are basically unnoticeable when zoomed out. It’s on purpose, because the vanilla “stains” don’t look good in my opinion, and there is the resource view that lets us see the exact resource placement. When zoomed in, there’s a little difference in the grass look. The textures are mash-ups, edits, and blends of The Sims 2 (and 3 with respect to grass) textures (I create content for TS2 and I often use original textures from that game to make mine), and a few free ones found online. I’ll post necessary credits in the description in the workshop. They either were seamless originally or I made them seamless, so there isn’t any tiling noticeable. The scale of tiling (adjustable in the theme editor) was the hardest to balance for the cliff texture. Large tiles look pretty good from distance, but very blurred when zoomed in. Small tiles look good when zoomed in, but make the texture very repetitive when zoomed out. I went for something in between, so it looks alright in both views, but I’m not perfectly content with it. It’d be best with a huge texture, but that’s not reasonable (and I don’t have any), so it’ll probably have to stay like that. It’s just my opinion, but the default temperate sand is terrible – not only does it glow orange/yellow, but has strange and repetitive alpha.
I know the previews aren’t very good, but I’ll make nicer and more descriptive ones for the actual release
I get asked a lot what mods I use for this game, especially when it comes to highway props and add-ons.
Here's a short list of some content that I use to make your highways looking nice!
Firstly, get the NAM if you haven't already. This list is for the RHW so make sure you check off that during install.
The first thing you're going to need is some signs. Unlike the Maxis highway that has signs randomly generate on the highway, the RHW needs some work. Luckily, there's a lot of signs out there and lets you customize the crap out of this.
For a simple, generic set, I recommend this set. Large, easy to read and also easy to plop.
And for your roads connecting to the highways, here's a simpler set
Along with general signs, you'll want some hazard markers too to let your drivers know about curves, speed limits, ending lanes, and other things the road can throw at you. Best to give them plenty of notice!
I'm lazy when it comes to this. Plopping lights takes a lot of time if you want uniform street lighting. Instead, go above 'street level' with some towers that light up a much larger area!
No matter how 'nice' your highways look, they're a NIMBY and no one wants to live near them. To minimize the folks who do have their homes close by, dampen the sound and light a bit with these walls that I find look great in both urban and suburban environments
Keep some right of way free if you ever want to expand your highways. Also if you have a median make it look nice! These 'empty' areas can also help absorb air pollution from the busy roads
I like to use the standard open grass area a lot, but you can fill it in with some tree park plops such as...
Example of one of the endless possibilities of what your highway can look like:
Click here for full size
Anyways hope this helps out anyone looking to improve the aesthetic appeal of their highways! Add some other features to make it your own unique creation!
Anything to add? Please post suggestions below!
Thought we can use a list of the most accessible 3D software and resources for our modding and custom content needs. If anyone knows any more resources feel free to share here. I will start with this short list.
Blender 3D- for everyone.
Blender training course http://gryllus.net/Blender/3D.html
Sketchup Make- for everyone
Sculptris- for everyone
If you are a student, teacher or mentor, this is an opportunity to use Maya free of charge for 3 years. Who knows what will happen in that time the way CG software is being "freed" nowadays.
I believe there's more but can't think of them right now.
Texture Resources: I chose the texture sites that have more architecture content as we will be using these types of textures for buildings.
Nobiax on deviantart (textures including normal and specular maps, some 3d models)
AGF81 on deviantart (textures, some normal and specular maps) Thanks Avanya. Decided to add your list in the first post for better exposure.
ShaderMap 4 Now available free for non commercial use.
Autodesk FBX Converter. This can convert various 3D formats to ASCII and Binary FBX. Also convert from either type of FBX file to the other.
Cities Skylines Tools. This is a Sketchup plugin that exports your model straight to the import folder from Sketchup. No more needing to export to another 3D program. It also comes with customizable grid options for both ground and height.
OBJ Exporter for those using Sketchup Make
Cleanup, another good Sketchup tool
https://extensions.sketchup.com/en/content/cleanup%C2%B3 Thanks Darf!
GIMP is a free alternative to Photoshop
Krita is a cool digital paint program also
NVidia Texture Tools for Photo Shop for normal maps, texture compression, mip map generation and cube map formatting.
https://developer.nvidia.com/nvidia-texture-tools-adobe-photoshop Thanks Darf!
Thought I would also include Unity since it's the engine of this game. I don't know how it would be useful or if it would give any advantage as I never got into it yet. But I imagine it would shed some light into why some things in the game are the way they are.
Unity Tutorials http://unity3d.com/learn/tutorials Thanks OwiHH!
Hope some of you find these useful
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