Wednesday, December 1, 2010
Changes in Round 6
The first change in Apple Grove is the neighborhood itself.
This is the original terrain for Apple Grove. It's a great map except for one important detail: how do you ever leave town? Not to mention, how does anyone out of town ever visit? There is a railroad, but rail travel is rare in rural Simerica, and no one in Apple Grove owns their own helicopter yet. So yeah, I thought it was important to remedy that by using SimCity 4 to make another Apple Grove with actual roads coming in and out and then used Mootilda's HoodReplace to change the terrain. If you do decide to use the program, it is very important to make a backup copy of your neighborhood. In one of my attempts I had to reload from a backup copy.
Apple Grove even has a lake now. Unfortunately, most of the shore is not livable yet, so more fine-tuning in SimCity 4 will be required, and then the terrain will have to be replaced again in order to get more lots along the shoreline.
The houses and businesses have now been renumbered. I placed a 1x1 lot every uninhabited 10 spaces, and so now I have been able to come up with better addresses for every lot in town. These lots will eventually be community and residential lots made to look like bus stops, parking lots, and small parks, but their main function is just to be numbered markers. If you look closely at the top picture in this post, you can kind of see that there are tiny lots with a (neighborhood deco) tree on them.
My simself is the new de facto mayor of Apple Grove. No one currently has the LTW to be mayor, and someone has to be in charge. Is it nepotism to put yourself in charge? Anyway, the reason to have a mayor is to have somewhere to send the taxes. Each house will start out paying 10% property tax per round, based mostly on Lakeside Heights tax system. My simself's family will have to keep our money in accounts on Monique's computer to keep it separate from the town's funds. Taxes will be used to build new community buildings and pay city employees. I will probably got back into each house that I've already played in Round 6 and have them pay taxes, and then make sure that for the rest of the round each house pays on Monday morning right before leaving for the next lot. Starting in Round 7 tax day will be on Tuesday.
Another change is with apartments. They are no more as of halfway through Round 6, at least not played the way Apartment Life makes them. They are glitchy, have annoying/creepy NPC landlords, and can only be played one apartment at a time. All the apartments in Apple Grove have been acquired by the town of Apple Grove by eminent domain. Except for Candy Apple Court, the apartment buildings all still exist. That lot was too spread out as individual houses to be played all at once, and was not easily converted into separate lots either. Some apartment buildings have been converted into separate rowhouses, and others will be played using Inge's 4 key doors from Simlogical. I've decided to have landlords for these new "apartments".
So far, a new duplex has been acquired by the Fancey family who are landlords. I had them send money (the amount the apartment building cost) to one of the 2 families that would be moving into a new duplex. The first family moved into the duplex, and then I merged in the second family. The rent is based on the building's total cost. In 120-130 Candy Apple Road the whole furnished building costs §37,400. There are two apartments. I decided that in order to receive some profit as landlords, the building would need to be paid off after 2 rounds (14 years in Apple Grove). So rent will be determined by the cost of the building, divided by the number of apartments, divided by 2 rounds. That makes the duplex apartments at 120-130 Candy Apple Road §9400 a week. Rent will be paid every Tuesday with Simwardrobe's checkbook. I keep the various tenants' money separate by using bank accounts on Monique's computer, and having each apartment own a computer. This is somewhat of a pain, especially since you can only add or subtract from your account in increments of §100, but I still have made it work fairly easily in a test neighborhood. I just have to remember to make a deposit whenever someone earns some money. The bills that come twice a week are divided evenly among the apartments and are considered "utilities." The lease agreement is binding until a new renter is found and the current resident has enough money to buy a house or rent a different available apartment, which has to be on a Monday to keep everyone on the same schedule. I was thinking as far as repairs and yardwork were concerned, the landlord could be teleported to the lot, selected, and given chores, then unselected and cleared off the lot.
Future careers in Apple grove will be either LTW related, OFB businesses as either owners or employees, or sims can earn money at home by crafts, novel-writing, financial advice, etc. This will be somewhat based on a sim's interests and the needs of the community. There will be no more game careers for those who don't have that LTW. Also, eventually I would like to have buildings for all the existing careers in the game, so if a sim is in law enforcement, there would actually be a police station. Of course, it wouldn't actually function that way, but there would be opportunities to send the sim to the lot for pictures or skilling, which would be cool and make it seem a little more realistic.
In True Colors I also mentioned I wanted my sims to have favorite colors to help choose their clothing and decorating, but that has evolved a bit into not only colors, but themes such as plaid or camo. You can see the current details of each sim in my post Sims of Apple Grove.
So anyway, I hope some of these ideas will make sense, and I'm sure I'll have to add more details as I play. I have a few more changes in mind for Round 7, but this is what I plan to start changing now.