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How do I take screenshots on SimCity 4 instead of the ingame camera?

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Personally I'd say the easiest built-in means is by pressing Print Screen, commonly labelled as the PrtSc key. On Windows, this captures your entire monitor's resolution in the active program and temporarily stores it to the clipboard. Then paste it into an image editor such as GIMP or Paint.NET (or even good ol' MS Paint will work). Here it's possible to crop the size, or even do any post-production editing should you wish (brightness, contrast, sharpness, etc).

Then the final and most important step is to output the image to file. Depending on your program of choice, this is usually in the File menu, where there's options such as Save or Export. Usually for high resolution and detailed images, JPG is the best format which is optimised for quality vs file size.

Then upload it here as you've done, or to a reputable online image host.

By the way...

A possibly little known trick is to use Alt+PrtSc to capture the currently active window. This saves on cropping it to fit and the image is all neat and tidy right away.

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There is also an open source program called greenshot which is a snipping tool that has a variety of functions like controlling which part of the screen is grabbed and many other features.

the functions can be initiated by the print screen button on your keyboard when in game.

Other than that print screen can be used as aforementioned by @Cyclone Boom


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I personally use: Clip2Pic (v1.0) by wouanagaine.

I start it once my comp is booted up and then it just runs in the background checking for images in the clipboard which got there by pressing the Print Screen button. Each time I press said button Clip2Pic saves the contents of the clipboard to a consecutively named JPG file. There's options to select what folder it stores the images in. (I set mine to go in My Pictures/Screenshots.) And you can also select the quality (compression) percentage. I almost always use 75%, but I've turned that up to 100% if I'm creating a collage of all the in game mini maps.


For this I wanted 100% quality for each little image and then I saved the final result using 80% quality:



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On 10/17/2017 at 6:15 AM, Cyclone Boom said:

use Alt+PrtSc to capture the currently active window.

Nice trick!


22 hours ago, CorinaMarie said:

I personally use: Clip2Pic (v1.0) by wouanagaine.

Looks promising. Will try it really soon. Thanks.

EDIT:  Well, tried it and didn't please me. Maybe I don't know how to use it. I don't see the purpose of having the Clip2Pic  window included in the pic.
I'm sticking to the "print screen" key. @Cyclone Boom's tip is neat too.

  Edited by huzman  

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9 hours ago, Jiwoahn said:

So I decided to try it out, and this is the result:

Looks great! Checking that mini map, I see you've built quite the metropolis. *:)


On 18/10/2017 at 5:16 AM, huzman said:

EDIT:  Well, tried it and didn't please me. Maybe I don't know how to use it. I don't see the purpose of having the Clip2Pic  window included in the pic.

Just adding to what Cori said earlier, it works by running Clip2Pic in the background before starting SC4. Basically it then responds anytime to pressing the trusty old PrtSc key. This is the instruction that sends the capture to the program, outputting it to a saved image file (at the path specified in: Settings > Destination directory).

Remember to hit the Start button when ready to go, like so:


No matter what program you're in, it'll still work without needing Clip2Pic in focus.

If you've already pressed Print Screen before, as a safeguard the image is immediately saved, clearing the clipboard ready for the next one. The "Picture" tab shows a sample preview of the last captured screenshot. As for the prefix, this is what's added at the beginning of each saved file. It could be used to describe or categorise a certain batch of images. Maybe depending on each city or theme? An incremental number is then added at the end (it counts up).

(Another nice bonus of this tool is it also works with the Alt+PrtSc trick too.)


I suspect the Greenshot tool @Eggman121 mentioned works on a similar basis. (Though I'm yet to try it.)

Throwing an alternative option in the mix, Lightscreen is one I've used on occasions when needing to save multiple images in quick succession. Overall though, it just comes down to personal preference. For the task of capturing an image to file, they each should do the job admirably.

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5 hours ago, markussaage said:

I think, this one is available now:

No More Neighbor Connection Arrows
That one is renamed "No More Neighbor Connection Arrows Thingy".
I was looking for the

10 hours ago, redfox85 said:

yellow pause bar thingy.

and got it from redfox85, in the above post. But Merci anyway.

On 10/17/2017 at 1:46 PM, CorinaMarie said:

Clip2Pic saves the contents of the clipboard to a consecutively named JPG file.

I missed that and that is a very welcome feature. When  I go down to the SOUP office I'll give it another go. Merci you too.

And Redfox85 too. Merci.

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Well, now my two cents here. I use a tool called PicPick. In the settings of the tool, you have a lot of hotkeys preset already to capture pictures ingame. You can set the folder, where the captured pictures  are stored as well as the type of screenshot, that is taken, like jpg, bmp, gif and png. All you do is press the "Print" button on the keyboard (or the key, that you wish to press, because you can change all that in the setting), and when a picture is taken, you'll here a little sound. Very handy, very easy.

Kind regards!

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1 hour ago, markussaage said:

I use a tool called PicPick.

I presume that would be this PicPick. And according to their site it has extra features too:


A full-featured screen capture tool, Intuitive image editor, color picker, color palette, pixel-ruler, protractor, crosshair, whiteboard and more.

User friendly and full of features for creating your image, Suitable for software developers, graphic designers and home users.


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Obviously we all seem to have found our own ways of solving this common problem. For me I use InfranView, I have it set to CTRL + F11 to make screenshots, but it's totally customisable. It drops high-quality BMPs into a set folder and also goes "bing" to tell me it's worked. I like it because I can define if the cursor will or won't be shown, the quality of the image and even which screens/monitors to capture.

There will surely be many more such programs, so whatever works for you, is surely the key.

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