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Author Topic: NAM 32 Pre-Release -- General Information  (Read 14230 times)

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Offline The NAM Team

NAM 32 Pre-Release -- General Information
« on: December 18, 2013, 08:17:10 PM »
The NAM Team is pleased to announce the public pre-release of the 32nd edition of the Network Addon Mod, NAM 32.

These pre-release versions are not the final, full release version of NAM 32, which will come later, but are instead designed to give the general public an opportunity to try out the new features and improvements, and provide feedback and report any issues that may arise, allowing us to produce a better final product.  This subforum is designed specifically for such purposes.

Disclaimer

Pre-release builds are not finished products.  While the team has attempted to iron out any glaring instabilities, some may still be present.

Availability

The NAM 32 Pre-Release (PR) builds will be hosted only via the NAM Team's long-time hosting partner, ModDB.  The final, full release of NAM 32 will be hosted at ModDB and the SC4 Devotion LEX.  Depending on how things go with the pre-release phase, there may be multiple PR builds before the full release.  These versions will be marked as NAM 32-PR1, NAM 32-PR2, etc. 

The PR builds will all be packaged in the traditional NAM installer, and with the improvements to the installer system that have been undertaken during the past year, the process of updating should be much more manageable than NAM installations have been in the past.

Download Link
ModDB

Installation Instructions

To install the NAM 32 Pre-Release, first run the self-extractor (NetworkAddonMod Setup 32 Pre-Release SFX.exe) to extract the installer, and then locate and run the installer (NetworkAddonMod Setup 32 Pre-Release.exe), which should be located in the same directory by default.

The reason for the extra layer of self-extraction is designed to reduce the size of the download (down to 238MB, versus 278MB for NAM 31.2) while also allowing the installer to run faster.

Support

As the NAM is very much a forward-looking project, the team's primary function during the pre-release phase will be in supporting and improving the pre-release builds, toward the goal of the full release of NAM 32.  However, until the full, stable NAM 32 release is available, the NAM Team will continue to offer NAM 31.2, the most recent "stable" release, at SC4 Devotion and ModDB, though tech support for NAM 31.2 users during the transitional phase will be limited at best.  Like all other old NAM versions, NAM 31.2 will be promptly discontinued upon the full release of NAM 32, and will not be supported or distributed again.

Documentation is included in the PR builds.  Note that some features may still require additional documentation.

Technical Requirements

The NAM 32 Pre-Releases, as per standard NAM Team specifications, are packaged in using the Nullsoft Installer System (NSIS), and are designed for use with the Windows version of SimCity 4 Deluxe, though it is compatible with other operating systems, such as Linux or OS X, provided one is using WINE.  The Aspyr Mac port is not supported.

The minimum configuration required to run the Network Addon Mod (NAM) with SimCity 4 is the same minimum configuration required to run SimCity 4 itself.  Either the original version of SimCity 4 in combination with the Rush Hour expansion pack or the combination version included in SimCity 4 Deluxe is required.  Both are equivalent.  In any case, the EP1 patch that brings the version number up to 1.1.638.0 is required.  If you don’t already have that patch installed, the NAM installer will guide you through the installation of that patch.  You must also have a valid game configuration.  If you have simply installed the game from a valid CD or from an authorized download, there will be no problems.  However, it is important that the game’s file name not be changed from “SimCity 4.exe”.

Note that with the minimum configuration, or something close to it, it will not be possible to use most of the NAM.  The Traffic Simulator and its associated files can definitely be used, as these take up a very small amount of space and merely replace existing data in the game.  The game will work much better simply with the addition of the NAM Traffic Simulator.  However, although the extra efficiency of the NAM Traffic Simulator allows you to build bigger functional cities, the speed of your game will likely slow to a crawl as the size of your cities increases.  The reason is that the CPU time required by the traffic simulator grows exponentially with the size of your city.  This is true of the Maxis Traffic Simulator as well (both traffic simulators use the same software engine), but it is much more difficult to build successful large cities with the Maxis Traffic Simulator, so this problem is seen less frequently there.

For further information, please read the Information Page on the NAM 32 Pre-Release installer.

Note to Left-Hand Drive (LHD) Users

Due to the fact that very few NAM Team members run the game in Left-Hand Drive (LHD) mode, where vehicles drive on the left (as in the United Kingdom, Japan, etc.), support for LHD mode may be more limited than that of Right-Hand Drive (RHD) mode, especially in earlier pre-releases and with newer features.  Thus, feedback and issue reporting from LHD users is especially appreciated, and will help the team ensure the best possible LHD support with the full release.

NOTE: The NAM does not change drive side.  Unless one has a clear idea of what they are doing, do not attempt to change the drive side options in the installer, as all those will do is simply give one a broken NAM installation without actually changing one's drive side.

Brief Overview of New Features

Please note that the pre-release process is not the time to request additional new features.  The feature list for NAM 32 is effectively frozen.

  • The NAM Elevated Viaducts for Roads, One-Way Roads, and Avenues are now available in a draggable form, at both Level 1 (7.5 meter) and Level 2 (15 meter) heights, complete with FLEX Height and On-Slope transitions.  Overpass situations involving one or more diagonal networks are not yet supported, and will not be available until a future NAM release after Version 32.
  • Elevated Rail-over-Avenue and Elevated Rail-over-NWM Road-4 dual-networking support has been added, complete with a new station supporting both networks.
  • The initial phases of the RealRailway (RRW) system have been added.  This feature must be selected as part of a custom install.
  • The RealHighway (RHW) system has been expanded to include the QuickChange interchange system, which blends the RHW's modularity with the ease of Maxis Highway construction techniques for certain situations, which will be expanded in future NAM releases.  Additionally, several new types of FLEXRamps are available--please read the instructions in the description text.  FLEX Transitions have also been given stability improvements for certain situations.
  • Coupled with the RHW system, the NAM now offers Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) functionality, including stations.
  • Transit station functionality has been further improved, including the beginning of the implementation of the SLURP, which will gradually raise all transit stations to NAM standards.
  • The NAM Controller Compiler has been included with the installer, with which it now communicates, ensuring that only the installed features are incorporated into the NAM Controller, reducing file size and load times.

The NAM Team would like to thank the community for its continued support over the past decade, and we appreciate your participation in the NAM 32 Pre-Release.
« Last Edit: December 19, 2013, 05:06:17 PM by Tarkus »

Sim City 4 Devotion Forums

NAM 32 Pre-Release -- General Information
« on: December 18, 2013, 08:17:10 PM »

 


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