SMag Issue 15

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editor’s note Welcome back to another issue of SMag! Happy new year, and I hope you and yours had a very happy holiday season. Since we last spoke, The Sims 4 Get Together came out, bringing with it new ways to enjoy yourself in a new town, Windenburg. This issue, we’re stepping away from family life, and towards life in the big city, with clubs, bars and places to hang out and have fun in. Our team have worked hard to make some awesome community lots for your Sims to live and play in, and they all fit into the big city of Windenburg.

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This year, we’re also inviting new people to join our team! If you’re interested in building or writing for us, DM me on Twitter, or email george@smagazineofficial.co.uk. I’m sure you’ll love what we have for you this issue, and, as always, I hope you’ll enjoy reading this issue as much as we’ve enjoyed putting it all together.

George B Editor-in-chief

SMag is not funded or endorsed by Electronic Arts, or it’s licensors. Under our Creative Commons license, you may not reproduce original or edited copies of this publication. You may also not use this work for commercial gain. Copyrights are property of their respective owners. For more information, email george@smagazineofficial.co.uk.


04 Tight Squeeze? 10 Cinderellimouse Interview 20 Ask Dan 28 Calahan's Pub and Cafe Mocha

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34 The SimsVIP Mod Pod 40 Quick Faves 48 AroundTheSims Interview 56 Ask Dan 64 Opinion 66 Dromana Internet Cafe 72 Eco Complex

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Apartments are getting smaller and smaller, so we decided to see how property in The Sims could handle the downward trend. Luckily, TheSimSupply has created some pretty great tiny homes we can use to test out our theories. Will homes in The Sims be able to adapt to the way that homes are getting ever smaller?

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We decided to start off easily with a 7x7 space to build a complete home in. This is the only home here not by James from TheSimSupply, so there's some custom content in here. As the floor plan shows, this home is spacious in comparison! We went for a completely open plan design to allow natural light to reach everything, using only some fake dividing walls to split up the home into bedroom, bathroom and living areas. You'll find everything here, including a study area, galley kitchen, sitting area and a double bed. Perfect for a couple!

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Here, James has managed to make a fully-fledged home with 36 liveable grid squares. It sounds like a lot, but really isn't! This small apartment has the luxury of private rooms. The bedroom and bathroom are separated from the rest of the house by doors, which provides that extra touch of privacy. Every room gets plenty of natural light in thanks to an abundance of windows. With a full-sized double bed, a desk area, a kitchen and a full bathroom, this apartment is perfect for a couple starting out.

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Getting smaller now, so that means some compromises. This home only has 25 squares of liveable space, yet still, James manages to fit in a desk, a table for two, a sitting area and a full bathroom. The only drawback is that this house doesn't have a double bed.

You can download these houses (and more) and see building videos at simnation.tv/ smagazine

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Finally, we are in a tiny 4x4 home - that's 16 squares. This home will struggle with any more than one Sim in there - everything is very close together. The bed is completely integrated into the living space, and a desk and dresser are over the bed. Next to it is a small island that acts as a dining table and a kitchen counter. The benefit of such tiny homes - in The Sims, at least - is that you get a lot more green space! Give the tiny houses a go, and share what you make with us.

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We spoke to Cinderellimouse, self-appointed community big-mouth and clown, about everything from mods to farms. Well, I've been a simmer for a long time, since the Sims 1 base game was released! And I've been active in the community since TS2. I make a bit of custom content here and there, and have made a few mods, but mostly I'm just a community big-mouth/ clown.

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When did you start playing The Sims?

What comes with being such a big part of the community?

About a week after the very first The Sims base game was released! My best-friend and I stared at that box art in the shop for about a week before we bought it! I remember looking at all the different sims and planning what they would be like. When we first got the game, we made ourselves and our flatmates and it was total chaos! Our simselves were stinky, and starving, and setting themselves on fire within minutes! It was pretty true to life.

It's really odd when people say things like this, because I just think of myself as part of the community. When you're messing around with your friends and being silly it feels normal. I hate the thought of anyone feeling like they are exclude from the community, or sat on the outside looking in. The gurus are so accessible now, especially on Twitter, that anyone can get involved and get their ideas heard!

What makes The Sims so special to you? I think, just the amount of my life that the brand has been part of my life. I've spent half my life playing this game, the entirety of my adult life! It part of my life now, and acts like a kind of catharsis. When I'm stressed, or upset, or annoyed, or just tired I can fall back onto my Sims safety blanket where I can just lose myself in my Sims' lives for a while and forget about whatever is bothering me. And there are so many different ways of playing! So if I'm in a creative mood I can build or create custom content, or if I want to focus on something I can mod or mess around with the files, or I can just play the game and laugh at all the funny things the Sims do!

What I would say is that I'm really thankful for the friends I've made in the community, I have a wide network of people to chat with and that's really nice! I can't count the amount of times people have made me laugh when I've been feeling grumpy or sad. It's a really nice and friendly environment to be in, on the whole.

When I'm stressed, or upset, or annoyed, or just tired I can fall back onto my Sims safety blanket where I can just lose myself in my Sims' lives for a while and forget about whatever is bothering me. 13 SMag Issue 15


If you could make an expansion pack for The Sims 4 what would it be? Seriously though, one expansion I'd really love to see would be a real farming expansion. I'd love a pack with farm animals, like the cows and chickens in the TS3 store, and a country fair with crafts like flower arranging and jam-making! And a marketplace with stands to hire to sell our produce. I'd love them to capture that traditional English country village feel. Think Miss Marple or the Women's Institute! Vintage 1930's/1940's fashions would be adorable as well. Have you ever dabbled with building? I really enjoy building. I'm really proud of some of the things I've built like the Lucky Palms Resort which had a ton of downloads (but is weirdly showing none today... maybe I broke something?) and I built a world called Crumpleton for TS3 that has over five thousand downloads across the versions available. Which is pretty cool. I found it easier to build in TS3, I'm rarely happy with how my TS4 builds turn out and I miss being able to do things like delete a single floor tile. What do you think of The Sims 4? I love The Sims 4 and I think, once it gets more content under its belt, it will easily be the best Sims series! I feel like it's more of a successor 14 SMag Issue 15

to The Sims 2 than The Sims 3 though. I feel like the development team are kind of looking back at their roots with The Sims 4 and trying to bring back the things we really loved about the older games but improving them as well. An example would be the clubs in Get Together. We had a customisable club system in TS2 where you could make your own group, and invite sims to join it, but Get Together took this basic idea and made it so much more customisable! I think that this is a brilliant game mechanic, really customisable, and it does what The Sims is supposed to do: give us adaptable tools to tell our own stories. I feel like the current Gurus really know their stuff now. A lot of them have been working on the Sims games for a very long time, and I feel like they have a really good idea about the way we play. I know TS4 got off to a shaky start, but I do think they are doing as much as they can to address many of our complaints. In terms of actual gameplay, I find the Sims 4 sims utterly charming and adorable to watch! I love the emotions, the facial reactions, and how fluid and natural the animations are. Some people find them too comic, but I love a slight exaggeration and it makes me laugh. And the Sims has always been comic, maybe the humour could be dark, but I don't think it was ever a game that took itself too seriously. And that's part of its charm.


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Thank you to Cindrellimouse for taking part in the interview with us! Make sure you check out her downloads and much more on her social links below. FOLLOW CINDERELLIMOUSE Twitter / The Gallery / Website

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Introducing SimsWorkshop, a new, fresh and free way to find great content for The Sims 4. We launched SimsWorkshop in collaboration with SimsVIP.com, so your content has great opportunities to be showcased on the biggest site in the community, as well as in SMag.

sign up now at 18 SMag Issue 15

That's not all - we offer free, unlimited hosting and bandwidth, as well as promising never to purge your content. You don't even need to log in to download people's creations! Check it out today and find a new, fresh way to find content for The Sims.


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Jenba's lot combines both a cafe and a pub to create a lot that would fit in perfectly in a city. The architecture is beautiful, and the lot looks like something you'd find on a typical high street - two townhouses converted into shops or cafes. Cafe Mocha is a charming cafe serving warm drinks and snacks throughout the day. The cafe has a very well-executed industrial feel, which makes the cafe feel very unique, as well as cosy. Jenba has used custom content very effectively in this build, using it sparingly. This means that the custom content items, like the fairy lights, draw your eye in to them, creating an interesting effect involving focal points in the room. You can see even more pictures and download the lot on Jenba's tumblr!

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Try and take a pre-built residential lot in The Sims 4 and convert into a store for your Sims to run! Some of the homes, such as those in Willow Creek, have shapes and sizes that present some interesting challenges.

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Cooking is one of the most common actions in The Sims 4, and being up to par with your Cooking Skill is the best way to ensure you create the most epic of meals. With hundreds of available recipes in the game, does each dish satisfy your Sim’s needs? Probably not. That’s where custom ingredients come to play. Why settle for what the game has, when you can add even more to the menu? Today we introduce you to Custom Food Dishes by Plasticbox! Not only has plasticbox mastered the custom foods division, but they have also introduced custom harvestables, and the Functional Juice Blender. Mix this with new food dishes, and you have some new variety in game. Let’s take a look at what Plasticbox has to offer. He has made loads of dishes for us to choose from - my personal favourites include chocolate pudding, tomato salad, fruit salad, tomato soup, spinach cream soup and even cherry pie!

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Most custom food dishes require special ingredients, and even have the necessary cooking skill levels attached to them. This is the real deal folks! Still not enough? Not only can we assume Plasicbox will release some more custom dishes for us in the future, but they’ve also introduced two new microwave pizzas, fruit shakes, and juices from the blender. Does it get any better than this? Plasticbox, along with the help of Icemunmun and Graycurse, have even introduced custom food interactions that add a little more flavour to the dish. We see this type of mod becoming very expansive in the future for all the right reasons. Mmmm, good!

Click here to download all of the mods we've spoken about today from the Downloads directory on SimNation. 38 SMag Issue 15


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We spoke to Sandy from Around The Sims about making custom content, building restaurants and The Sims 4. Hello! My name is Sandy, I'm a French woman, and I've been creating stuff for Sims for more than 15 years now... which means I'm a bit older than 18 years old. But not too much...hehe!

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When did you start playing The Sims? As soon as the French version for Mac was released, in January 2001 (it was a long wait, believe me!) I remember it was supposed to be released for Christmas and that it had been delayed, and I had written to the editor to say how disappointing it was! When did you first start making custom content? Well, it will sound a bit silly, and it says a lot about my dedication to making CC, but I actually started making custom content before I got the game! There was already CC for PC. I was downloading CC like crazy, even though it was before I had the game. I remember having unzipped clothing from SimFreaks, and I pasted my own textures onto them. But I had no idea what meshes were, how textures worked, and of course, when I finally got the game, everything I'd made was trash. What other creators in the community inspire you? I'm a player at heart, even if I spend way more time creating than playing, so it's mostly players (who 50 SMag Issue 15

can be creators too!) who inspire me. Budgie2budgie, napoleonfrost, inabadromance, ayojasims, martines-simblr, jenba, adelajde21 (for The Sims 4), titosims, ice-creamforbreakfast, procrasimnation, and danjaley (for The Sims 3) to name only a few, but there's many others I'm not naming here. I enjoy pictures of their games, they make me want to play, and as a result, make me want to make new stuff for the game, and I'm happy if my creations are part of their game.

I was already downloading CC like crazy, even though it was before I had the game. I remember having unzipped clothing from SimFreaks and pasting my own textures onto them. When I finally got the game, everything I'd made was trash.


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Introduce us to some of your Sims.

Do you build? What's your favourite type of lot to build?

For Sims 3, Yseut is one of my favourites. She was born in game from two pre-mades: Thornton and Morgana Wolff. I haven't kept many pre-mades in my town, actually, only Agnès Ladentelle (known as Mrs Crumplebottom in English) and the Wolff family. As people who played them might remember, their couple wasn't at the top; they divorced, Yseut has been raised by her mother till a terrible accident that killed Morgana It's actually the only death I had in my game. Poor little Yseut had to live with her father, who dislikes children, so they had quite an awful relationship. Yseut is the kind of little character you want to see happy but who always has troubles, poor little thing!

I've built a whole town and I'm in the process of building two more in Sims 3; I build a bit less in the Sims 4 as I'm more in a "renovating buildings" process in the Sims 4. I found Sunset Valley looked horrible at first, but I quite like the Sims 4 towns! Without doubt, what I like better are community lots, like bars, restaurants, shops... a place where my Sims enjoy for hanging out. But I actually rarely know what the place will be when I build, except for movie theatres, maybe. I like building a street shell, with a couple of buildings, and then, when I need a bar or a restaurant, adapting it to the buildings I made. Community lots are my "cup of tea" since Sims 1. I had lots of various community lots and tried to give to each of my Sims a favourite shop (a bakery, a music shop...), a favourite hang-out place (a sport bar, a chic restaurant...) and a favourite hobbies place (like movie theatre, gym, disco...). It was easy because I had 10 or 12 Sims to satisfy. Now, since I have 120 Sims, it gets harder to have something different for e v e r y o n e !

In the Sims 4, I mostly play with premades and Sims I have recreated from Sims 2 (at some point, I wanted to remake my Sims 2 game in Sims 4 - but I gave up), one of my favourite Sims is a pre-made: Liberty Lee, from the BFF household (you know, those "best friends" who hardly know each other when we start playing the game...) She's a hoot to play with, always happy as long as she has a computer to play with.

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If you could make one pack for The Sims 4 what would it be? For The Sims 4? A family pack, with toddlers and lots of family activities, like children cooking with their parents. The lack of family play is what keeps me away from Sims 4. What do you think of The Sims 4? I'm a bit torn about Sims 4. I enjoy playing it for a quick session; it loads fast, it's fresh, it's cartoony... but I get bored very quickly. I don't manage to get a real connection with my Sims as I had in The Sims 3, I think they lack personality. The mood system doesn't make much sense to me, as it seems to override traits. Slobs clean dishes, a lazy Sim will get energetic after a shower... With Sims 3, I often end up playing long into the night, losing track of time. That hasn't happened with The Sims 4...yet! And, finally, what are the best and worst parts of being so active in the community? The best part are the wonderful people I have met; I consider some of them like real friends now. The worst? I don't know. I guess it's the drama? I try to ignore it, I don't read about drama. I actually don't have much patience to deal with crap about the Sims. The Sims is my lovely and funny universe, far

from all the real life troubles. There's no disease, no money trouble, no shooting and almost no death in my games, and I don't want my fun to be spoiled by a bunch of bored people arguing.

Sandy makes custom content for both The Sims 3 and The Sims 4. Find her at aroundthesims3.com. You can also follow her on Tumblr at aroundthesims, and you can support her website by making a donation, and in return get faster downloads and combo files forever! Finally, you can take a tour around her town, Sandy Valley, in The Sims 3 by going to aroundthesims.online. fr/my_sims. Thanks Sandy! 55 SMag Issue 15


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I was only 7 years old when I was first introduced to the Sims franchise. Now in 2016 and with the release of a new game, two new expansion packs, two game packs and six stuff packs, I can say that the game is finally starting to take shape and be moulded (to a degree) into a fan creation. The Sims 4 offers builders such as myself a new way to build. Some things being simpler, other issues in building being a little more difficult. Primarily as a builder I love being able to drag and drop rooms with a few clicks on my mouse. The user interface that the Sims team have created is simple, sleek and stylish. Something that very much appeals to me and is aesthetically pleasing to the eye. However, build mode also seems to lack content. Primarily the game is shifted towards actually creating Sims and playing the game how you want to but there doesn’t 64 SMag Issue 15

seems to be a balance between gameplay and building which, when I bought the game, I wanted. The loss of create a style in build mode was something to adjust to as most of the available colour swatches do not match other objects. In addition, the lack of objects frustrates me too. I often try my hardest to create smaller builds as I know creating something larger will result in me placing objects that I have already placed two times before. Nonetheless, the community that surrounds the game is amazing. The community is so cohesive which is something that is so valued. The Sims community is so welcoming to new people. For example, I joined the community in May of 2014 and I can honestly say from the bottom of my heart that it was one of the best decisions I have ever made.


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Sometimes, you find a creator within the community that blows you away with their attention to detail and their sheer talent. Ansett4Sims is one of those creators. Yet again, with his new build called Dromana Internet Cafe, he blew me away with the attention to detail; the love and attention that goes into his builds. This internet cafe is meticulously detailed, right down to the lamps on the ceiling and the paintings on the walls. His mid-century modern style of architecture works well once again, and creates a building that looks retro and modern at the same time. This wouldn't look out of place by the sea in Windenburg! Flip through for more pictures, or visit this issue's Downloads section to download the lot for your game. 68 SMag Issue 15


Download this lot and everything else in this issue by going to the Downloads section at simnation.tv/smagazine.

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Take a building like this and leave all but one or two apartments empty. Move your Sims in and voilĂ - you've made an apartment building!

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You can download Simproved's lot by visiting the Downloads section at simnation.tv/smagazine. But, you can also click here to watch the speed build! 79 SMag Issue 15


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Thanks for joining us Issue 16 is coming in June 2016

THE TEAM Inside this issue... George Bishop Editor in Chief Martymor - Ask Dan Alexis - SimsVIP Mod Pod

LEGAL

SMag is not endorsed or funded by Electronic Arts, or it’s licensors, in any way. All trademarks are the property of their respective owners. All creations shared inside this magazine were shared in the belief the creator would not object to us doing so. You can find out more by emailing the editor, george@ smagazineofficial.co.uk We will not hesitate to take action against those that plagiarize the content of this magazine. SMag, this issue and the content inside it is protected by a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

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simnation.tv/smagazine twitter.com/smagofcl

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