CREATING A TUNING MOD
Some people find tuning mods and want to make changes that fit their needs, while others see behavior in their game they would like to change. Whatever the case for your interest, you shouldn't feel unable to make changes because you "don't know how". Though Tuning Mods are one of the simplest forms of modifying your game, sometimes that's all you need. You don't need a core or script mod to make sims stop doing annoying behavior or have them perform a task autonomously, etc.
- The CC framework - Mods/Packages folder and Resource.cfg - set up. If you already use .package file CC, you already have this. If you don't, you'll need to set it up: Game Help:Installing Sims 3 Package Files.
- Create a Workspace - start by creating a new folder somewhere on your computer. Give it a name: Tuning Mods or Workspace or My Test Area, whatever you want.
- Open the Gameplay folder. To do this click on "Start" > Computer > C: > Program Files(x86) > Electronic Arts > The Sims 3 > Game > Bin > Gameplay
- Copy the GameplayData.package to the new folder you just created
- You willneed .Net 4.0 to run S3PE
- Download S3P3 by Peter L Jones and install it on your computer. Simplest way is to use the "Windows Easy Installer version".
- Open S3PE and make sure it's setup to make things easier for you to use (this should be set by default)
- Make sure "Names" is checked
- Make sure "Preview" is set for "Value"
- Make sure "Display" Names and Tags are checked
Now you should be setup properly to start creating a Tuning Mod. It's recommended that your game be patched to the most recent patch level. If you update your game or make a mistake and edit the GameplayData.package you copied, by accident, simply delete it and copy it again to your folder. By copying the GameplayData.package to your folder, you don't run the risk of messing up the one for the game to load properly.
OPENING THE GAMEPLAYDATA.PACKAGE IN S3PE
- Open S3PE if it isn't already
- Click on File > Open
- Locate the new folder you just made
- Click on the GameplayData.package
- Click on the Open button, give S3PE a few seconds to load it up
- If the "Names" are not in alphabetical order, then click on Names to sort
ITUN OR XML
GameplayData contains 3 types of resources: DMTR, ITUN, AND XML. Typically, tuning mods consist of ITUN and/or XML resources so we will just focus on those.
ITUN resources typically deal with what type of sim can perform the action, what age sim can perform the action, can the sim perform the action autonomously or not, whether there are any restrictions (such as being pregnant), whether traits should be considered for the action, if the action can be performed on certain lots or all lots, advertising and fulfillment of sim needs, etc.
Below are 3 areas that are most commonly changed in ITUN resources:
AUTONOMOUS OR NOT
<Disallow DisallowAutonomous="False" DisallowUserDirected="False" DisallowPlayerSim="False" /> You would edit this line if you wish to change whether the action is autonomous or not
<AgeSpeciesAvail AgeSpeciesValue="B,P,C,T,Y,A,E,CH,AH,EH,CC,AC,EC,CD,AD,ED,CL,AL,EL" />
- B,P,C,T,Y,A,E refer to sims: baby, toddler, child, teen, young adult, adult, elder
- CH,AH,EH refers to child horse, adult horse, elder horse
- CC,AC,EC refers to child cat, adult cat, elder cat
- CD,AD,ED refers to child little dog, adult little dog, elder little dog
- CL,AL,EL refers to child large dog, adult large dog, elder large dog
MOTIVE ADVERTISING AND FULFILLMENT
<Change type="TraitFlirty" advertised="20" locked="True" actual="20" updateType="ContinuousFlow" timeDependsOn="False" updateEvenOnFailure="True" updateAboveAndBelowZero="Either" />
- Advertised Value refers to how much Fun, Social, Hygiene, etc a sim thinks they will gain by performing the action
- Actual Value refers to how much Fun, Social, Hygiene, etc the sim will actually get from performing the action
If you want a sim to do something more or less often, you would increase or decrease the "Advertised" value, really only applies to Autonomous actions.
XML resources can be small (a few lines) or rather large (several thousand lines) and generally supply tuning values. It might be how much something costs, how long it takes to complete an action, etc.
FINDING THE RIGHT RESOURCE
Now you have come to the part where you need to know the interaction or resource you wish to edit. Perhaps there is some annoying sim action you don't want or perhaps you wish they would do or not do autonomously, or some other aspect you would like to change. While in game, take note of the action or interaction you wish to edit. If the interaction shows up in the "queued actions" (top left of your game screen), hover your mouse over the interaction icon to see what the action is named. This will give you a good idea what to look for in the GameplayData.package.
If you don't have any particular item in mind, you can scroll down the list of names to find something interesting you would like to edit. Once you find something that interests you, click on it and view the preview of the contents in the right panel (preview). If there's something there that you would like to edit, then it's time to export your resource.