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Author Topic: Question about resetting neighborhoods/exporting Sims  (Read 2939 times)
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gazania
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« on: June 09, 2011, 02:24:10 pm »

My Strangetown is corrupted. While my daughter and I have been trying to avoid the situation, the time has come to reset the neighborhood. We have extracted a few favorite Sims for CAS later. I've followed the MTS2 Wiki to the letter (not that this is hard!), and exported my Sims via Sim PE per the instructions. So far, so good.

I have a rather stupid question, however. My Strangetown had more than 900 Sims. I later installed a few no-regen hacks to cut down on the number of extraneous college students, townies, etc., but did not do so for the first two years.

With the new neighborhood, of course, all our user-made Sims will be gone (except for their template copies, which I HOPE are safely ensconced in the Saved Sims folder). I notice that the files have names like "N002_User 700". But if I have, let's say 500 character files in the new game, including ALL characters such as Grimmie, etc., will that be a problem? Is the game going to get confused if suddenly, there are 200 missing Sims? Or is this simply a file name, and for all the game cares, I could call it "Abraham_Lincoln", and nothing will go awry?

Sorry for the question, but the last time I reset a neighborhood, I didn't particularly care about re-creating my old Sims, and simply nuked 'em all. Smiley
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Theraven
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« Reply #1 on: June 09, 2011, 02:48:25 pm »

I needed some sims for another neighborhood. What I did, was to extract them with SimPE, then "remake" them using the extracted version in Bodyshop as a base, and pack the new versions before re-installing them with Clean installer. I entirely removed the extracted versions (but keep those as a backup outside my game).
That's the #1 safest way to do it, and won't allow for confusion.

The sims has to be remade in CAS and all of that, so they won't keep memories and such (using extracted versions with memories and such often leads to bugginess), but for moving sims around, it is the safest method.
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« Reply #2 on: June 09, 2011, 03:43:50 pm »

What Raven said is very important.  Those memories will bite back hard and destroy your new hood.  

Besides doing as she said, there's another way using lots. Instructions for Safely Saving sims on Lots shows how you can move all the sims you want to save to one lot put it in a temporary hood, then clean up the memories with either SimPE or using Pescado's FFS Debugger.  Since using SimPE to clean up memories is a time consuming process, and mistakes happen, the Debugger option to Remove corrupt memories is the fastest and safest way to fix the sims.  No need to modify the sims with CAS then.

IMPORTANT:
Strangetown and Verona townies and playable sims are bugged right from the start.  Go to MATY or MTS and find a replacement version of those hoods that have the fixed sims. These buggy sims are probably what killed your Strangetown.
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gazania
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« Reply #3 on: June 09, 2011, 08:22:04 pm »

I thought so. The extraction method seemed waaay too simple. I found myself looking at the instructions and feeling my spidey-sense tingle.

So here is what I did, and what I hope I'm going to be doing right soon:


After finding that Google could be a sadistic friend (for some reason, I kept getting listings for EMPTY neighborhoods, not fixed ones), I saw this page:

http://www.moreawesomethanyou.com/smf/index.php/topic,4306.0.html

I downloaded the files for the cleaned and fixed Strangetown. Oddly, the only thing in that file is the characters folder, plus one other file. I take it that I'm supposed to replace the neighborhood as always, but substitute the fixed folder and file for the ones that came in the base version of the game. Seems easy enough.

Also, I cloned those extracted Sims, adding a small difference or two to each one to make SURE I'm using the right ones. (I hope that's what Raven meant by "remaking! Smiley )If one of the new Sims doesn't have a backpack, for instance, I'm using the wrong one. I removed the extracted ones out of the Saved Sims (the "user_name" Sims), and put them in their own special folder; one that has nothing to do with the game. The new ones are on my desktop, ready to go.

I'm waiting to see if my daughter wants any Sims or lots packaged ... we play the same game. Once she's made her decision, I will extract/package her stuff, leaving hacked items out of the lots for now, if she wants to save any lots. I delete the file in My Documents, go to My Computer, find that vanilla file and copy it, replace the Characters folder and that one file with the fixed files, put the copy of the base N002 file in my game.

Once the thing hopefully cranks up, I'll use the batbox and make sure that there are utterly no older memories involved with the lots or the new clones, and later check Sim PE and verify this. This SHOULDN'T be a problem with the characters because I'm using clones of my saved characters, not the originals, as Raven indicated. And I hope the batbox will take care of any possible memories involving lots ... I read that rarely, this can happen.

Am I on the right track? I hope?







.

« Last Edit: June 09, 2011, 11:21:47 pm by gazania » Logged
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« Reply #4 on: June 10, 2011, 07:30:25 am »

Ummm... You seem to be doing OK on the extracted sims front but you're struggling on the hood front. And you're calling both folders and files "file" so I'm not sure if you're on the right track or not.

1. Before you do anything, make sure you have all the noregen hacks safely installed. And you have made a backup. I know it's borked but better to have it and be able to salvage stuff from it than to cry over spilt milk.

2. Delete N002 from My Documents\EA Games\The Sims 2\Neighborhoods. Make sure you have backed up everything you wanted to back up first. Go to C:\Program Files\EA GAMES\The Sims 2\TSData\Res\UserData\Neighborhoods and copy N002. Paste it into My Documents (as above). Then delete the Characters folder and N002_Neighborhood.package, then unzip the downloaded folder and file into the same location. Congratulations, you now have a cleaned up Strangetown. You actually don't need to batbox or SimPE anything at this stage. Your sims are clones and will be manually remade in CAS and moved in clean as the driven snow. You can batbox their memories of the mystery sim or whatever else you want to remove but you don't actually need to debug anything at this point. you have a clean hood and you have clean sims. Don't try to fix what ain't broke.

3. Definitely keep the extracted sims out of SavedSims. Keeping them there eventually stops Bodyshop from working. Once you have clones you can move them into Downloads. Just make a Strangetown Sims folder and throw them in there. It is best to keep content OUT of SaveSims.

4. Pro-tip: If you rename the sim files, you can actually see their names in CAS so you don't have to struggle to remember who is who. It's probably too late now but in the future, if you write down the name of each sim as you clone them and pop out into Saved Sims, record the nonsense filename (ie. the newest file that was created, so you need to do this each time you make a clone just to keep things in order) next to their real name. Once you exit Bodyshop you can safely rename the nonsense filenames. Then, when you enter a hood, input the cheat for debug mode (boolprop testingcheatsenabled true) and then enter CAS. And then you press Shift+N on your keyboard. Hey presto you get a pop-up that tells you that CAS is now in debug mode. When selecting custom sims you can now hover over their thumbnail and it will tell you the filename - if you renamed the files or wrote down the nonsense filenames next to real names you can now easily identify who is who. Especially useful for families with several kids as they can look almost the same and be hard to tell apart. Particularly if some time has passed and you don't have a fresh memory of everyone like you do now.
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gazania
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« Reply #5 on: June 10, 2011, 02:52:55 pm »

Thank all of you for your help! My new Strangetown and Downtown seem Ok for now ... my daughter is in charge of making a university, and we'll add the shopping district if and when we feel like it. There is so much more space to add Sims now!

I stuck one of my packaged Sims in there, and he's doing just fine. His backpack turned blue, but that's not of much concern to me. Flashing accessories are normal in my game, as they are in many.

The only thing that puzzles me is than when I look at his name in the Sim PE Sims descriptions, he and a bunch of other Sims have their names grayed out. Some names, however, are normal. I can access his data easily enough, and he looks fine in-game, but am not quite sure why so there are so many gray names! I'll swing by Sim PE and try to see what's up with that later.

Again, thanks!

EDIT ... can't see anything about that in the forums, nor on Google. And I see that other neighborhoods have ALL-gray names. I suppose if it ain't broke, don't fix it! Also, I see that various backgrounds are in blue and gray, and there are some Unknowns with red backgrounds (the Mister Potato head ones.) Most people don't seem particularly concerned about Mr. Potato Head (it seems to be a very common occurrence), but if there are regular Sims with red backgrounds, that's bad, it seems. Blue are deceased, and gray are normal. Red are unlinked, and if you have a non-potato-head unlinked Sim, uh-boy. My packaged clone has a nice gray background.

My packaged Sim has NO memories of anyone right now, other than the Mystery Sim and the ones he just met, so I'm presuming I did my job well enough with the packaged Sims. Smiley Thanks again!
« Last Edit: June 10, 2011, 03:15:06 pm by gazania » Logged
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