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Author Topic: Postcards from a Mattb325 Test Region  (Read 6705 times)

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Offline fantozzi

Re: Postcards from a Mattb325 Test Region
« Reply #20 on: March 23, 2019, 03:20:56 AM »
This is really a nice MD to study. It's a perfect example that you can't build a natural (indeed!) looking city by only plopping those "divas" those iconic buldings but always have a lot of generic building around. Look there's place for everything - the old little towenhouses, the shopping centers, the skyscrapers all doing well together. It looks like a long grown city. Always some empty spaces here and there.

Never to forget - 10 years ago this game was looking like that:



At the end it were people like you, Matt, changing this game into something so believable - still the most realistic reproduction of real life architecture in all games.

I have a question.

On the first entry, the second picture - behind the hotel by ks_jpn (I can't remember the bat's name atm), there are some white/beige residentials of the same height with a bend. I don't know them. Can you help? Thank you.   
« Last Edit: March 23, 2019, 03:23:09 AM by fantozzi »

Offline art128

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Re: Postcards from a Mattb325 Test Region
« Reply #21 on: March 23, 2019, 03:57:57 AM »
Lots of industries indeed, but that pier is quite nice looking.
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Offline mattb325

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Re: Postcards from a Mattb325 Test Region
« Reply #22 on: March 23, 2019, 08:45:17 PM »
Replies:

Alan_Waters: thankyou! because it's a testing region, I don't take any time pre-planning, but I still hope that it is a believable result  :)
AsimPika3172: thankyou!  ()stsfd()
art128: thankyou! I like the little commercial strip...reminds me of the victorian-era fascination for trips to the seaside
fantozzi: thankyou! The game certainly has changed (for the better) I prefer to have the game grow things. It's generally easier and you do get the element of chance. The building you are referring to is the Maxis McCormack Apartments that I have relotted.



As a special bonus, for CJ readers, I'll attach the relot of the McCormack apartments here. In my opinion it is one of Maxis' better bats (they are all pretty good, even after all of these years) but this one was let down with poor lotting.

It goes from this:


To this:


I lotted this years ago for my personal use, but it is was all done with the PIM-x, so stats are reasonably balanced. As you can see from the images, it does grow.

The lot size is 6x6 (all tilesets) R$$ residents 3,699

Dependencies - any of you who have downloaded my lots should have all of these:

*CP textures Vol01
*CP MEGA Props Vol1
*CP MEGA Props Vol2
*SG MEGA Props Vol1
*Mattb325 Props Vol2
*Mattb325 Props Vol3
*Maxis Buildings as props vol2



Offline PaPa-J

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Re: Postcards from a Mattb325 Test Region
« Reply #23 on: March 23, 2019, 09:02:14 PM »
Beautiful re-lot.
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Offline Alan_Waters

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Re: Postcards from a Mattb325 Test Region
« Reply #24 on: March 24, 2019, 04:49:28 AM »
Matt, maybe because there was no special planning and it turned out so naturally as in real cities?  ;)

Offline PaPa-J

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Re: Postcards from a Mattb325 Test Region
« Reply #25 on: March 24, 2019, 08:43:29 AM »
Matt, maybe because there was no special planning and it turned out so naturally as in real cities?  ;)
:laugh:   So, are you saying that there is no natural planning in the real cities?  If so, I can believe it.  LOL
Lighten up, just enjoy life,
smile more, laugh more,
and don't get so worked up
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Offline fantozzi

Re: Postcards from a Mattb325 Test Region
« Reply #26 on: March 24, 2019, 01:35:04 PM »
Matt, maybe because there was no special planning and it turned out so naturally as in real cities?  ;)
:laugh:   So, are you saying that there is no natural planning in the real cities?  If so, I can believe it.  LOL

Oh! Philosophy?  :clap: I would say "planning" is a typical cultural achievement and "natur" and "planning" are more likely contradictions. Often you excuse inappropriate behavior with "nature" - the hormones, the animal inside, the uneducated -> far from culture. Nature seems more to be the trial and error queen, the capricious - giving birth to a hunderd of species, snoopy if one of them accidentally survives. On the other hand planning can work with pattern - culture can think of nature as an antetype for strategies, get models from nature.

There is this small but enlightened writing  by Heinrich von Kleist called "On the Marionette Theatrer" which deals exactly with this problem how can be a planned behavior be a natural behavior and this strange "blindess" or "unconsciousness" or "innocence" you need to act naturally. A fascinating problem.
« Last Edit: March 24, 2019, 01:38:28 PM by fantozzi »

Offline evarburg

Re: Postcards from a Mattb325 Test Region
« Reply #27 on: March 24, 2019, 08:28:25 PM »
(Had time to visit more at leisure --entries 2 & 3) Wonderful third entry (the port industries). It is really fascinating to see how you do things --either “innocently” or by design :-), it works ! I kind of feel reassured seeing you put residential zones between commercial and industrial ; I tend to mix them even more (does wonder for traffic). I do believe the usual style of zoning, big zones of nothing-but COM or IND or RES is the sort of bias that kills are cities in RL...

BTW What-Is that harbour industry lot in the second picture, after the map, with the blue bales or boxes in the middle and the rounded quays ?

PS : giving us that Maxis relot was mighty generous of you, thanks !

Offline c.p.

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Re: Postcards from a Mattb325 Test Region
« Reply #28 on: March 24, 2019, 11:04:34 PM »
I agree with evarburg.  The R, C and I meld and flow together "naturally", rather than being isolated from one another in huge blocks, as they might have been if (to sort of extend fantozzi's musings) the development of the region was dictated by some of the planning practices of the past.

Offline mattb325

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Re: Postcards from a Mattb325 Test Region
« Reply #29 on: March 28, 2019, 04:16:51 PM »
Replies:

PaPa-J: Thankyou! (x2, lol) Maxis buildings are often overlooked, but really many hold up very well. Indeed, most cities are haphazard
Alan_Waters: Thankyou! I'm not meticulous in my planning....it's whatever fits into the Z4 area of my screen :)
fantozzi: Thankyou! Very true. For this MD, planning, lax as it is, would manifest itself from my own experiences living in various cities
evarburg: Thankyou! I'm glad you like the mix. The building in question is the water pumping part of SOMYs Fukishima nuclear facility http://somy.gozaru.jp/. Scroll down towards the bottom of the page where you can download the files.
c.p.: Thankyou! I don't like things too isolated in RCI and prefer to have everything within reasonable commuting time. Just like in RL, the liveable cities all are easily walkable, cyclable, etc.



For today's entry, we are here, the edges of the map are for farm testing testing:


I always find it enjoyable playing the farming zones. SC4 is relaxing anyway, but the farming zones for me even more so.

The agricultural areas were done after the C and I of the previous entries, and here is another lesson...the game always wants to have sufficient low wealth in each category to support the $$$ elements of each category. If you don't have the low wealth stuff (I-Ag, I-D, R$ and CS$), demand will tank over the mid and higher wealth categories and never recover until you do include $ categories. So my tip is to get low wealth content you are happy mixing in with higher wealth content, or just segregate it on its own tile.

Anyway, onto the pictures.








Housing near the river








Non-agricultural jobs provided by the BSC reward farms and reward mills (where the category of demand created = demand satisfied rather than just a plop with jobs or grown jobs that satisfy demand), which doesn't waste any of the commercial demand in such a small population











Enjoy  :satisfied:

Offline art128

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Re: Postcards from a Mattb325 Test Region
« Reply #30 on: March 28, 2019, 05:36:36 PM »
Beautiful agricultural tile... I like the way the farms are separated by trees and stuff, very nice.
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Looking for a specific props or texture? Check out the Props & Textures Catalog: Props [link] - Textures [link]


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Offline evarburg

Re: Postcards from a Mattb325 Test Region
« Reply #31 on: March 28, 2019, 09:04:56 PM »
Oh I love this -- Farms and open country, (but not industrial agriculture with nothing but giigantic fields and no biodiversity left) that's right down my alley ! (I wish you had made more farms...  ;) )

What do you think of SPAM ? I remember welcoming it with cries of joy because I was so fed up having the agri demand just vanish in favor of farmland-gobbling IND-IND-IND & RES-RES-RES (and commerce, of course). Notwithstanding the need to stay in touch with nature in order to keep a degree of sanity, people need to EAT, and not from outside the SC4 map, food that grows only on urban supermarkets' shelves. That's one of the biases of the original programming (that and cars-cars-cars) that annoyed me no end as SO American (well, USian), especially as I was a country girl in France...

Offline 89James89

Re: Postcards from a Mattb325 Test Region
« Reply #32 on: March 29, 2019, 03:04:17 AM »
Missed a couple of entries and a big thanks for that relot, its looks amazing. I'm with evarburg in the praise of the rural stuff you've shown, they look gorgeous. The regional view also looks really nice. Goes to show that even as a test region, the whole city development bug will bite you anyway (or you just got really lucky with how it looked as you put it together lol). As someone who loves natural growth style CJ's and not that interested in plopping buildings, this is really inspiring and enjoyable stuff!


Offline mattb325

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Re: Postcards from a Mattb325 Test Region
« Reply #33 on: April 03, 2019, 06:46:55 PM »
Replies:

art128: Thankyou! Farms here in Australia tend to be set well back from the street, and despite our atrocious environmental record with land clearing, there are usually trees left along the borders, which is what I've tried to replicate.
evarburg: Thankyou! As this is a testing region, I have limited any mods to the NAM only, or little parks that I use to create a small spike for various sectors, because I don't want any undue influence in ensuring that things grow naturally or behave as I want them to prior to releasing. I do agree however, that it is crazy how quickly I-ag demand evaporates once the city and region gets going.
89James89: Thankyou! The bugs of the game will absolutely bite, so even in a test region, there needs to be balance



A very quick entry today.

We are here:


This tile was still done to ensure that regional demand issues could be corrected, and the keen-eyed amongst you will see how many reward-buildings plus the multifunction station that has been added to help balance everything out. At any rate, with summer coming in the Northern Hemisphere (not so where I live.....we had the first snow fall of the season on Saturday afternoon  ::) )a few beach scenes might be in order....









Offline fantozzi

Re: Postcards from a Mattb325 Test Region
« Reply #34 on: April 04, 2019, 03:37:32 AM »
Oh that wonderfully done bay makes me dream to walk there in the salty breeze and almost I can hear the bickering seagulls thrown up and down by the wind ...
« Last Edit: April 04, 2019, 06:22:28 AM by fantozzi »

Offline evarburg

Re: Postcards from a Mattb325 Test Region
« Reply #35 on: April 04, 2019, 09:13:51 AM »
If I understand your testing process well, (1) you have a big region, with a variety of tiles (big medium small) (2) when batting something knew you (fill) play (which is not quite the same thing) a good portion of a tile, or awhole small tile, to check the overall balance, not only for the tile but for the whole region ?

Asking for a friend whose test tiles too often get away from her  :D

But seriously, when I test stuff (be it yours or anything else), considering my game plugins are different from yours, I should do the same, then ? Or should I have a minimal plugins set dedicated only to testing ? In fact, what IS in your plugins ? (apart from NAM) ; do you have a basic RES-COM-IND set of plugins you use for testing ? Do you use only your bats and vanilla Maxis ? (I'm not sure I see everything well, what with the artistic blurring  :) )

My other question would be : Does SPAM changes the mechanics of the game that much ? It doesn't feel that way when I play (except for the persistence of Agri demand, which doesn't seem to impact IND demand at all.)

Offline c.p.

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Re: Postcards from a Mattb325 Test Region
« Reply #36 on: April 04, 2019, 01:24:35 PM »
Nice beach :thumbsup:
The blurring makes me feel like I'm speeding through your MD a bit drunk. ?=mad)=

Offline mattb325

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Re: Postcards from a Mattb325 Test Region
« Reply #37 on: April 10, 2019, 04:45:26 PM »
Replies:

fantozzi: thankyou! Beach season sadly is well and truly over here, but outside autumn has arrived, right on cue (it will be at its most spectacular by the end of the month)
evarburg: thankyou! There is actually another test region that I use at the moment as well.  $%Grinno$% All my stuff (with the exception of basic growables or basic parks) is tested in two different regions. The other region is just plain maxis only into which I drop a reward or specially modded type building first and foremost. In that region I use no plugins/mods apart from what I intend to test.
As I have made a number of buildings over the years that have quite unique properties, I test there first to ensure that nothing is buggy or has unintended consequences and then I test it in this region.
This region has a full plugins suite. 5+GB...NAM, all the BSC stuff, sfbt, ndex, peg, hkbt, japanese bats, polish bats + so many others collected over more than 16 years.
Each of my lots is tested a further two times in a full game set up (ie it should grow twice or be plopped twice) and then I release it.
Now I test much more extensively than most batters, but obviously I can't test every scenario and as I have said, I keep demand or game altering mods out of my main plugins to ensure that I am in a game scenario that fits most users playing style.
I do recommend people test things that they have downloaded, but these days, well over 90% of things made with the PIM-x tend to work without issue.
It's only the  stuff made with the Maxis PIM, using foreign characters, mistakes in post lot-making modding (such as tweaks being done with the reader/sc4 tool), or a batter/lotter rushing out a creation that cause headaches for the downloader.
c.p.: Thankyou! ...that's why Shaun (diggis) gave me this avatar  :D



So today we're looking at one of those boring tiles in the middle of the map. You know the ones. A mid-sized, flat, land-locked tile that is totally featureless. Nothing inspirational. But for me, playing out my earlier plopping efforts, this is a great tile to soak up another piece of the demanding tanking equation.....Low wealth and transit connections on all four sides.

We are here:



With a tile that is as boring as watching paint dry, I draw two diagonal avenues through the centre of the map to at least provide some visual interest. It crosses rail lines and other networks.



In my plugins I have a lot of low-wealth stuff that appeals to me (I like to keep low-wealth things looking somewhat 'nice', others may want obvious slums, commie blocks, dirty industry, etc...there is plenty of choice) and I recommend while playing that you make a lot of your low wealth historic to ensure it doesn't upgrade. The HK bat team made a lot of tower blocks and I have many of these set for low wealth. It absolutely does the trick by ensuring that you can house huge numbers and low wealth residents don't care about long commutes, use public transport, work in low, medium and high wealth C & I, and, mot importantly, feed into the demand of other sectors.

Obviously these pictures were taken at the end of the session, but the zoning is done first PRIOR to plopping any real services such as education, health etc (water and power are a necessity for density) to force low wealth to grow



You can see Maxis buildings in all of my images as I don't block Maxis (it's a recipe for problems...even after all of these years there is still insufficient stage 1,2 and 3 stuff in all wealth and RCI categories to get a healthy city)

To aid density and demand, I plop one of my multifunction stations:


Then, having marked the low wealth tower blocks I want to keep as 'historic', start placing other services, rewards, and so on. All of my rewards also cater for low wealth sims, and some, such as Madame Tussauds (an alternative to the Llama tourist trap) that was made for situations like these, employ mostly low wealth sims  ;)
Once the other services such as education, health, police and fire, parks and rewards are placed, development in other sectors takes off and the tile is far more balanced:








Offline evarburg

Re: Postcards from a Mattb325 Test Region
« Reply #38 on: April 10, 2019, 10:24:41 PM »
It's not a boring place in your city, it just looks... plausible ! :) And yes, balanced.

I usually only keep Maxis Comm & Ind when I begin a tile -- but my cities are small or medium town which begin with Agri and CP Nineteenth Century Res stuff (or relots of those). It usually works well enough (and then I add you ! ;) ) In fact there is a lot of Custom Low Wealth Res as far as houses go, but of course my problem begins when I need moar LW, i.e. big buildings. I'd forgotten HK, indeed (taking notes !)

A question about “Make Historical” : I do, diligently, but many buildings do update nevertheless ; is it because of imbalance ?

Offline fantozzi

Re: Postcards from a Mattb325 Test Region
« Reply #39 on: April 11, 2019, 02:08:52 AM »
Did I see one of my relots?  Wow, this feels like you see yourself on TV!  $%#Ninj2 ?$%kar&%h  $%#Ninj2 In some transmission in a corner for a few seconds ... and you phone everyone you know: "Turn on your TV! Quick. Channel 5! Look there I am!"

"Where? This is Mike Pompeo on an interview..."

"Yes, but behind him, in the crowd. The third person from left - that's me! I'm on TV! I'm on TV!" ...  :D
 

Another one - third picture, left side, behind Huston's viewdeck condos, the grey, a little generic, cigar thing - I don't recognize it. It appears on later pictrues too.

Thank you. I like watching your MD even if scrolling too fast together with the motion blur - I get the feeling I'm falling down from somewhere.

So better scroll slowly through this work of art! Nothing to hurry through.
« Last Edit: April 11, 2019, 02:17:53 AM by fantozzi »