Jump to content

Cyclone Boom

  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last Visited

  • Most Liked  


Cyclone Boom last won the day on
May 17

Cyclone Boom had the most liked content!
View Past Leaders

About Cyclone Boom

  • Rank
    Simtrop Enthusiast

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Interests
    City-builders, simulation games, technology, websites, problem solving, graphics & photography.
  • City-building game(s)
    SimCity 4

Recent Profile Visitors

15,999 Profile Views
  1. Simtropolis 9.0.x - Bugs & Issues Report Thread

    Update: As planned, the STEX has now been reopened for registered members only. Consider this a trial run to see how it impacts site performance. The Gallery is still offline for everyone, but in due course this will likewise return and just currently won't be accessible. We'll continue to monitor server load and post updates should this situation change. Thanks all.
  2. Simtropolis 9.0.x - Bugs & Issues Report Thread

    I'm leaning towards from all indications it will be much safer to post without this risk now. However given shortly we shall be reopening the STEX to members, it could be how the added load on the server causes similar performance degradation as over the past few days. Hopefully this won't happen, but potentially this may require the site to be taken offline in order for it to recover. Therefore just in case before submitting, I suggest making a copy of your post (or any site content) is still highly recommended until further notice.
  3. Simtropolis 9.0.x - Bugs & Issues Report Thread

    So far early performance observations suggest the site is running notably quicker now since we've taken the STEX and Gallery temporarily offline. Both the responsiveness of pages and the general load times seem much improved. Based on this as @CorinaMarie explained, I can confirm later today we'll be bringing the STEX online to registered members only. This means only those like yourself with an account will be granted access to the STEX. However, any visitors will provisionally be required to register an account themselves, and then remain signed in to view and download files as normal. However should this prove a detriment to acceptable performance, I'm afraid we'll likely be reverting to this current state with both the STEX and Gallery completely unavailable, pending a resolution (and restoration). Our reasoning behind this is to ensure Simtropolis can function to the greatest extent possible at this moment in time. Then once the issues are identified and fully resolved, we'll bring the STEX and Gallery back fully online in due course. After looking into the database and performing an optimized rebuild, I can confirm everything appears to be structurally sound in that regard. The same applies to files stored on server which remain untouched, and so it'll be a case of tracking down and ironing out the deeper issues. As ever with such prolonged technical issues, thanks everyone for your patience and understanding.
  4. I suppose it depends on the underlying goal when building any given city. In terms of how the No Kickout toggle adjusts the growth simulation, I've been testing it with @CorinaMarie and feel it's an extremely useful mod for improved realism and finer control. Since contrast between wealth levels is something common in real world cities, it prevents lower wealth from being taken over. This means wealth levels can coexist, such as by R$ remaining inside an area suitable for and containing R$$ and even R$$$ homes. Tax rates can be adjusted accordingly, and should one later wish to upgrade an area, it's possible to selectively bulldoze. This then provides higher wealths an opportunity to reconsider and grow in place, providing the conditions are suitable. It therefore makes the balance of jobs and Sims easier to maintain, all with the convenience of not needing to mark hundreds of buildings as historical. As a bonus, we've noticed how some lower wealth buildings can survive which would surely have been automatically upgraded. For instance I recall there being a few terrace houses and also small sized prefab blocks which were still there in among an area of wealthier condos and apartments. An exception to the rule is should a building abandon, it's then able to automatically redevelop. In a way this seems realistic too, given it represents how a property developer has invested in a restoration or a full reconstruction. While it may need consideration to plan ahead when developing and take a little getting used to, I feel No Kickout is really a highly beneficial gameplay adjustment. It may well be that Maxis toggled it off prior to release, so then to allow more widespread RCI development with less control over what can grow where.
  5. SimCity 4 demand mods don't work

    I'm not someone with recent experience of using an RCI demand mod, but I'll try my best to explain how to work the Super Mod from what I've found from testing just now. It seems this is a little more complicated in the installation setup than most mods, since there are options to configure it to one's preference. First of all I was slightly confused with the instructions in the readme, but after studying them for a bit, I found it easier to follow once I'd reworded them to: For me personally to help with organization, I first created a "Super Demand Mod" folder in my Plugins. Then inside there a "Totals" subfolder to add those extra files as needed. That way it's easier to tell the totals apart from the main "Max Out" files, or the "Suppress" ones if intending to set the demand to zero for any of the RCI wealth levels. I suspect maxing them out is probably what most would use this mod for, and as it sounds like you're looking to do. If my interpretation is correct on how to install it properly, here's how to apply the max out for all wealth types... First of all copy all 12 DAT files from "Max Out" to Plugins. Then for the "Totals" select these ones: Three R Maxout.dat Five C Maxout.dat Three Cs Maxout.dat Two Co Maxout.dat Four I Maxout.dat Make sure to copy the correct file depending on the numerical text it begins with. (E.g. Three for all 3 residential wealth levels: R$, R$$, R$$$) In the game on an existing tile I noticed the RCI demand bars were initially maxed out. Then on the graph which goes into detail for the specific wealths, at first it still displayed the original demands. But upon running Cheetah speed for while (the quickest simulator time), it soon sprung up as it seemingly should. As follows: And once that happens you should be all set since it means the simulator has implemented the change. (Or for however you'd like to configure the demands.) The forums never get tired of new questions because that's what they're here for. Likewise people can then try to assist by answering in reply, which in turn will hopefully help the topic starter like yourself, or anyone else who comes across in future seeking the same solution. So rest assured you're fine. (In this case I've just moved your topic over to the Custom Content forum as I feel it's better placed here with other topics on SC4 BATs, lots, and mods.)
  6. @Indiana Joe This is a very insightful exploration into the strategic methodology behind a carefully curated set of custom content. With it so easy to quickly become overwhelmed with the myriad of BATs, lots, and mods out there, I couldn't agree more with having a focus. Setting out key principles and then to select items accordingly to one's personal preference. Whether into the gameplay or the more artistic non-functional side of things (or even a balance), by using a systematic approach it then becomes easier to not only realise what items to use, but knowing each is there for a designated purpose. Then as compiling a Plugins set, making a decisive effort to organise and keep track of what is what. Although it may seem a monumental effort at first, in the long run this collectively does reap the rewards. So thanks for taking the time to document your approach. In what arguably is more of a creative hobby than just a game, there are endless possibilities. Sometimes simply knowing where to start is the biggest step. I'm sure along with the valuable input shared already by everyone in this discussion, it'll help as an inspiration to many. As an aside... For greater visibility and since it can relate to various gameplay aspects (including RCI wealth management), I've moved us over to the General Discussion forum. I also featured the thread so it'll be listed on the homepage feed and sidebar tabs. I highly suspect both new and returning SC4 mayors will have an interest in the recommendations being discussed here. That way it can stand out from modding topics, which are otherwise specifically focussed on the creation aspect of custom content.
  7. Screen is Tiled and Overlapping

    Hi Owen, welcome to Simtropolis! While I've not personally experienced this issue, my first thought is since you're running SC4 in a virtual machine, whether this could be preventing the game from recognising your host system's dedicated and more powerful GPU. From my limited knowledge of using VirtualBox, I recall there's a way from the config settings to allocate hardware and resources to the "guest" system (in this case being your Win XP). So perhaps there's something there which may help if adjusted. Perhaps it's worth trying to run SC4 using software rendering. This can be done by adding the -d:software command to the Target field in a shortcut. For example: "C:\Program Files\Maxis\SimCity 4 Deluxe\Apps\SimCity 4.exe" -d:software You may find this resource useful for a list of other possible commends to add in combination. This includes setting a custom resolution, toggling windowed versus full screen modes. There's also other options such as hardware rendering (-d:directx), to use a single CPU core (-CPUcount:1), and skip the game's intro sequence (-intro:off). I'm not too sure whether these might help in your specific environment with running a VM, but it might be worth a try as an initial step. Also it might be worth ensuring your game is patched at least to 1.1.638.0. To check this, hover your mouse over the game's executable file in the installation directory (from the above path example). If less than 638, the suitable SKU version of the EP1 update is downloadable from our Maxis Files page here here at ST. Should it be viable, I suspect you may have quicker success installing SC4 on your main system (Windows 7?). If encountering issues installing the disc based version, there are certain considerations due to the SafeDisc copy protection no longer being supported should patch KB3086255 be installed. Even on your virtualized system, perhaps it may also be worth looking into configuring SC4 to recognise your new hardware (dedicated graphics card), as this post explains. So just a few ideas to hopefully get you started in whichever route you'd wish to pursue. (And no worries about your topic as posted in GD. I've now removed it from the forum listings so discussion can continue here in Bugs & Tech. )
  8. The Milestone Thread

    They are both the same, so that would be zero. In terms of what's totalled for site submissions, Content Count refers to everything posted anywhere. Whether on the forums, the STEX, City Journals, or the Gallery, etc, each submission is recorded as a single numerical increment. Several years ago you may recall on the forums was the only place for this to happen. This then made up the total and everything else wasn't counted. How it is now on profiles in forum topics, I suppose still saying "Posts" helps to keep familiarity and so it looks neater here on profile summaries. There is an admin tool which can recount user content counts. We could do this for the entire membership and this would increase most totals, since older posted content outside of the forums would then be included. But we figured for the sake of continuity it'd be best to stick with the status quo. Should yourself or anyone wish to have their count recounted however, just let us know and that can be arranged on an individual basis.
  9. The curse of transportation and chocolate sprinkles!

    The way I interpret the quoted info @catty-cb posted, I think it means how the game calculates aspects of the simulation in stages. Then instead of a generic error message, the reference to "chocolate sprinkles" is just a humorous way of saying this. There probably isn't a chocolate factory short of supply or something. I'm just speculating here, but perhaps the reason for calculations done this way is to conserve system resources. Since on the computers SC3K was designed for at the time, having data collection continually processed at once might've been a big ask for the entire tile. If any additional help, the Prima Guide is available from archive.org on this page. Scrolling down there are links to various downloadable formats including PDF.
  10. How to make a super demand mod for SC3000?!

    Although I've only ever played SC3000 many moons ago, I'd just like to try and post a few words of encouragement. Firstly, please don't think you've failed if not quite able to get something working how it could. Oftentimes it can take a while to learn the technicalities of something, and there isn't always a straightforward leap from A to Z. In fact, perhaps steps B to Y are first needed in-between to improve understanding of any given concept. Consider that so far you've discovered ways which won't work, and to build on your knowledge from here on. That's all part of the learning process. Seeing what went wrong, why that might well be, then look ahead and focus on trying again to get it right. So while it may seem beyond frustrating (or even infuriating) at this moment, do keep at it. Maybe the following articles from the "SC3K Resource Center" could be useful to study for inspiration: Several tips to start and keep a big, successful city Big, well-planned cities--fast Zone development rules The economy The Great Depression Overcoming growth obstacles How to develop high-density buildings Get and keep high tech industry Quick and easy urban renewal Traffic and transportation specifics Land value specifics Increasing land value: strategies Raise land value to Astronomical Applying my experiences from playing SC4, I wonder whether a useful strategy in SC3K is similarly to develop a city slowly in stages. It probably isn't what you had in mind given an RCI demand mod would aim for quick results, but perhaps it takes time to reach a stable and thriving city. By progressively zoning and developing RCI, that way small adjustments are potentially easier to make as needed to establish a visually and functionally successful city layout. I hope this helps in some way.
  11. First of all just to say that the Reader is the most advanced tool which can edit the entire range of accessible exemplar properties on lots. There is a somewhat steep learning curve, but the advantage is the benefit of direct editing. One thing to keep in mind is that most values are in hexadecimal form, which means they're not interpreted as entered. The game uses this from where the value will be read as a decimal. There are tools online to achieve this, or the Windows Calculator has a function in "Programmer" mode. I would overall highly recommend the Reader as being the tool to learn, and even the basics can go a long way. For editing the main properties like costs, the LEProp might come in handy. This is a simplified tool also developed by iLive, and has the ability to perform certain simple edits via a user interface structured in menus by game functions. Opening up SM2 Power Transformer 1.dat and it appears like so: Here we can see where the costs can be edited and the other main properties. The Name is the menu title shown in game, and below is the description (empty here). To implement a change: First enter a new value, then hit Apply at the bottom, followed by Save DAT at the top. The "Rollback" button will revert changes to how they were upon first opening the file, so that can be useful if needing to go back without re-opening the item. In terms of implementing a Waste to Energy function, I don't believe this is possible using the LEProp. I tried adding a "Landfill" function from the Power & Water page: But in the game I only noticed the lot appeared in the "Sanitation Systems" menu along with the Landfill and Recycling Centre. The query could be changed though, but this wasn't the same as what the Maxis W2E plant uses which displays on the query: Trash Incinerated (Tons) So I suspect like other complexities, this requires a special property adding via Reader.
  12. SimCity 4 sound effects?

    At least a portion of the game's sound files are included in the Sound.dat file inside the root of the game's installation folder. Here for me using the original CD based version of SC4 Deluxe, this is 116 MB in total. It's possible to open this using iLive's Reader and the sounds can be previewed using the "Play" button when selecting an entry. For example: This is from an XA file, and there's also TRK (track?), along with LEV, and HLS files inside. The latter two formats don't seem to be actual sounds themselves. I suspect they instead contain code which instructs the game when to play certain sounds, with them being linked to certain actions or game events within the simulation. You'll see there's an "Export as wav" function as previewed above. Maybe I'm missing something, but it doesn't seem to do anything upon clicking. It is possible to save the files in their raw form though, and for the XA ones they were larger which suggests these are the actual sounds. This can be done by selecting the entries in Reader, then right clicking the context menu option named "Save selected file(s)". Then they'll be saved to the folder as determined by the "Copy/Save default folder" path in Reader's options. Once exported, it's possible there are some 3rd party tools out there which could convert these for personal use.
  13. Hi there RandomDownloadLotsALT, welcome to Simtropolis. This I believe looks like what's known as the "Water Bug", and is caused by when custom lots have an overlay texture without a base texture. It's likely Maxis never intended for lots to not have a base texture (the original Lot Editor doesn't allow them to be saved without). So then there's a glitch that causes the terrain not to be shown and the city background pattern image is there instead. Along with entering the water pipes view, it seems to be triggered when saving a city. Although in the latter case it will no longer be shown when exiting and re-entering a tile. As a workaround while in an affected tile, it's possible to make it go away by toggling to the Zones Data View, then clicking "All Off". The actual solution would require a base texture adding to the affected lots, or removing the overlays.
  14. How to make a super demand mod for SC3000?!

    I've not heard of that error before. Does it make any difference testing in another browser when replying to your other topic? In case it helps, I've just reset the site's cache which occasionally clears things up.
  15. Prepping my First Region

    I'd better let Mr Armstrong explain... (I deliberately snapped the pic from when he looks in his most menacingly miffed mood.) At least from my testing just now, it turns out the radius of the fire stations gets reduced upon placement without a road (or street) connection. All it needs is one or more cells to touch the lot, and then the firefighters can seemingly escape and do their job within the defined radius as shown prior to plopping. With a connection present, here's proof the radius is the same by comparing side-by-side with another one: The same also seems to apply to the Large Fire Station and even the Fire Department Landing Strip. However what's odd is this doesn't happen for any unit in the police department, and those retain the exact radius as displayed before building. Likewise for the medical facilities where there's no change either. Unless someone has an explanation for this behaviour (as a bug or feature by design), it really is most odd. Personally I've always made the habit of building Civic services on roads or streets, so admittedly I don't recall ever noticing before you mentioned it. There's always something new to discover in SC4.