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#1 Old 24th Sep 2008 at 7:39 PM Last edited by Mootilda : 16th Jan 2009 at 7:00 PM. Reason: Try simpler fix first
Default Creating an Apartment on the Beach or Uneven Terrain
According to the readme that came with Apartment Life, there is a problem with beach apartments:
Quote:
Originally Posted by EA/Maxis
Note that zoning a beach lot into an apartment lot will severely corrupt the ocean and lot terrain and is strongly not recommended.
However, I have only been able to find one small problem with beach apartments. That problem is easy to fix using the Apartment Life version of SimPE.

Note that this same problem occurs if you try to create an apartment on uneven terrain, or if you create an apartment with a basement.

There is no problem adding a residential beach lot to your neighborhood, building an apartment complex on that lot, or using the "changelotzoning apartmentbase" cheat to change the lot from residential to an apartment building:




The problem occurs when you move a sim into the apartment building. The lot terrain drops down several stories, so that neighboring lots are up on hills and the water is hovering in the air:




Simple Fix:

If you have installed a patch for Apartment Life, or if you have the Mansion and Garden Stuff pack, then you may be able to fix this bug in-game.

Just pick up the occupied apartment building in the neighborhood view and then place it down again in the same place. That's it; you've fixed the problem.

If the game allows you to pick up the lot, but doesn't allow you to place it down again, press the esc (escape) key to abort the move.

Thanks to J. M. Pescado for suggesting that I look into what happens when an occupied apartment is moved in the neighborhood.

Not-So-Simple Fix:

If the simple fix doesn't work for you, then follow the rest of this tutorial:

When this problem occurs, save and backup your game.

Be sure that you have the latest version of SimPE (0.72 or later). You must have a version which is compatible with Apartment Life, or you can destroy your entire neighborhood.

1) Start SimPE and open your neighborhood using the menu: Tools / Neighborhood / Neighborhood Browser, then select your neighborhood from the ones displayed. Alternatively, you can use the menu: File / Open, then select the appropriate neighborhood package. You will have to use the second method if you are using the AnyGameStarter or BaseGameStarter.

2) In the Resource Tree (left pane) of SimPE, choose "Lot Description (LTXT)". In the Resource List (right pane), click on the "Name" column title to sort the list of lots. Scroll down until you find the name of your beach apartment.




You will notice that there is at least one other lot with the same name, but with a number tacked on the end of the name. That is because AL will spawn clones of your lot for each playable family which moves onto the lot; the lot name for each of these clones will be the apartment name, followed by the family number. You want to choose the unoccupied apartment base, the one with no additional family number at the end of the name.

3) At the bottom of the window, choose the "Plugin View". Information about your lot will be displayed in the bottom pane. Select the information labelled "Z:" at the top right side of the bottom pane. This is the correct elevation of your lot. Copy this number to the clipboard by holding down the <ctrl> key and typing "c". Or, write down the number so that you can type it in later.

4) Now, select the occupied apartment sublot in the Resource List, the one with an additional family number at the end of the name. You will notice that the Z value does not match the one from the apartment base in step 3. This is the bug.

If the apartment sublot Z value matches the apartment base Z value, then you may have selected the wrong sublot. See whether there is another lot with the same name, but a different number on the end.




5) Select the incorrect Z value. Copy the correct value from the clipboard by holding down the <ctrl> key and typing "v". Or, type in the number that you wrote down in step 3.




6) Click on the "Commit" button, then save the neighborhood package using the menu: File / Save.

If you've followed these instructions correctly, you have now fixed the bug for this family. Run the game and play the family to ensure that everything looks OK. If you move another family into this apartment building, you will have to make this change again for the new occupied apartment sublot.

Thanks to Inge Jones for asking me to look into this problem.
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Lab Assistant
#2 Old 24th Sep 2008 at 8:24 PM
Thank you so much for this, I've been saving beach real estate just for condos and now I can have them. I'll give it a good test tonight as soon as I can start the game.

How they managed to screw up something like this is beyond comprehension.
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Original Poster
#3 Old 24th Sep 2008 at 8:46 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by CTNutmegger
I'll give it a good test tonight as soon as I can start the game.
Excellent. Please let me know if you have any problems with the tutorial, or if you find other beach apartment bugs that I missed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CTNutmegger
How they managed to screw up something like this is beyond comprehension.
It's clear that they didn't actually test beach apartments until it was too late to fix the problem. So, they stuck a note in the readme instead.

I'm really hoping that the fact that it is such a tiny easy-to-fix bug will mean that it will be fixed in the patch. What I can't figure out is why they bothered to change the elevation after cloning the lot... there's no reason for them to touch that field at all!
world renowned whogivesafuckologist
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#4 Old 24th Sep 2008 at 9:29 PM
Ooh, lovely! I was hoping someone would fix this. You kick ass, Mootilda.

my simblr (sometimes nsfw)

“Dude, suckin’ at something is the first step to being sorta good at something.”
Panquecas, panquecas e mais panquecas.
Field Researcher
#5 Old 25th Sep 2008 at 9:17 AM
Marvelous! Thank's for this I'll be trying it soon as I start my game thismorning :D
Field Researcher
#6 Old 25th Sep 2008 at 10:13 AM
Thanks a lot for this info Mootilda
I'll probably wait for an official patch to fix this problem because I want my creations to be as easy as possible for others to use - But it's great to see that there are people here who can do what EAXIS so obviously couldn't

Life's a game, so let's play!
Test Subject
#7 Old 25th Sep 2008 at 6:39 PM
For the first time EVER, I will be able to use SimPE. I am a moron when it comes to that program, but your instructions were so clear (and you provided the REASONS for doing each step!) that I couldn't possibly fail!

I'm off to make some Hawaii styled condos! Thanks so much for this tutorial.
Test Subject
#8 Old 26th Sep 2008 at 11:21 PM
Thanks so much. You've helped a ton.
EA sucks it if they don't fix this in the patch.
Lab Assistant
#9 Old 29th Sep 2008 at 11:30 PM
Thankyou. I built my first apartment complex on my island and it sunk. It was not a beach complex, either. The water was a small pool shape above the mail box and the complex was 10 or so clicks below ground. I'm am so happy for this fix because it was a very elaborate and beautiful complex. Kudos to you
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Original Poster
#10 Old 2nd Oct 2008 at 1:55 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by frillen
I'll probably wait for an official patch to fix this problem because I want my creations to be as easy as possible for others to use
Unfortunately, there's no fix for beach apartments in the first AL patch.
Field Researcher
#11 Old 2nd Oct 2008 at 10:15 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mootilda
Unfortunately, there's no fix for beach apartments in the first AL patch.
And it's not only beach lots, apartments built on uneven terrain have the same issues...
I guess EAxis imagine that all apartments is placed on completely flat terrain
Hopefully there will be a fix for these terrain issues in patch 2 or 3
There seems to be a lot of unadressed issues still!

So until then I will enjoy your wonderful guide in my own neighborhoods, but sadly I won't be uploading my beach apartment project until users can move sims in without the lot sinking!

Thanks for the info on the patch Mootilda

Life's a game, so let's play!
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#12 Old 2nd Oct 2008 at 3:56 PM Last edited by Mootilda : 3rd Oct 2008 at 2:40 AM.
Thanks for the info about uneven terrain. I was wondering why cookniro was having problems. It all makes sense now. I've updated the tutorial.

I was really hoping that EA would fix this in the first patch, because:

1) They knew about it well in advance; early enough to get something into the readme.
2) The fix is very simple.
3) This fix is best done by the game, rather than by a mod.

But, at least they now allow people to move occupied apartment buildings.
transmogrified
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#13 Old 3rd Oct 2008 at 8:45 AM
I hope someone takes the brave first step of uploading a beach lot apartment and linking back to your solution, Mootilda. I don't build, but I do have several "regular" downloaded apartments floating in space because they were placed on uneven territory, so I can't wait to fire up the latest SimPE and fix them at last. Thank you!
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Original Poster
#14 Old 3rd Oct 2008 at 9:05 PM
If you had the links to those downloads, I'd be happy to post in those threads and point people to this tutorial.
Lab Assistant
#15 Old 4th Oct 2008 at 2:56 AM
Thankyou thankyou thankyou
Test Subject
#16 Old 19th Oct 2008 at 12:11 AM
Thanks for this Mootilda, it's proved invaluable in fixing my first apartment lot. The odd thing about it is that the lot was neither a beach nor uneven, but still it sank when I moved the first tennant in. I don't know if anyone else has had a flat lot have these issues? For reference it was a Plasticbox lot that I converted int apartments.

F.E.A.R - For Everything A Reason, Forgive Everybody and Remember, Fantastic Expectations & Amazing Revelations. You got the F.E.A.R.
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#17 Old 19th Oct 2008 at 3:17 AM
Very odd. Looks like the entire sublot-creation logic is bad, even though it sometimes works. Did the lot have a basement? Perhaps you could give the the link, so that I can take a look at the internals of the lot package.
Test Subject
#18 Old 19th Oct 2008 at 9:49 AM
Thanks for the reply. Heres the link to the original lot Backdoor Lane 10
The lot does have a basement under one of the houses. Are you thinking that was the reason it sank? It'll be interesting to find out why. Apartment coding has been done so badly it's unbelievable.

F.E.A.R - For Everything A Reason, Forgive Everybody and Remember, Fantastic Expectations & Amazing Revelations. You got the F.E.A.R.
Fat Obstreperous Jerk
#19 Old 19th Oct 2008 at 3:27 PM
Does the sublot creation logic continue to fail if you have P1 and simply pick up the lot and move it and then move it back? It seems the sublots correctly move when you pick up an apartment and move it: Does moving an apartment suffering from such a thing correct the problem, or will it recorrupt a lot that was previously fixed?

Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I cannot accept, and the wisdom to hide the bodies of those I had to kill because they pissed me off.
Test Subject
#20 Old 19th Oct 2008 at 5:36 PM
As I haven't patched I can't test or answer that one. I can't move apartments.
I can say that basements seem to be the corrupting factor. I've tested a few other buildings by turning them into apartments and all the ones with basements sank. Buildings just on a foundation with no basement were fine. So it seems that basements should be added to the list. The game obviously sees them as uneven terrain even though the rest of the lot is flat.

F.E.A.R - For Everything A Reason, Forgive Everybody and Remember, Fantastic Expectations & Amazing Revelations. You got the F.E.A.R.
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Original Poster
#21 Old 20th Oct 2008 at 4:01 AM Last edited by Mootilda : 20th Oct 2008 at 5:38 AM.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pythia
The lot does have a basement under one of the houses. Are you thinking that was the reason it sank?
Yes, having a basement means that the lot is not completely 100% flat. So, that's the reason that you experienced the problem.

Quote:
Originally Posted by J. M. Pescado
Does the sublot creation logic continue to fail if you have P1 and simply pick up the lot and move it and then move it back? It seems the sublots correctly move when you pick up an apartment and move it: Does moving an apartment suffering from such a thing correct the problem, or will it recorrupt a lot that was previously fixed?
Good question. I'll check it out.

[Update:]
Moving an occupied apartment seems to resolve the bug. Moving a fixed occupied lot does not recorrupt the lot. Updated the original post to reflect this new information. Thanks, Pescado!
Lab Assistant
#22 Old 20th Oct 2008 at 5:29 PM
Good new info, but the SimPE method will still be useful for those lots that can not be moved (like those carefully adjusted and moved with Lot Adjuster, to really complicated places :P).
Test Subject
#23 Old 28th Oct 2008 at 7:54 AM
Thank you for such a great and easy to follow tutorial! It worked brilliantly and looks lovely now. Just so everyone knows, it seems that the second AL patch borked things again. I wasn't able to just lift the occupied apartment lot and place it again to fix the problem
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#24 Old 28th Oct 2008 at 4:30 PM Last edited by Mootilda : 28th Oct 2008 at 6:01 PM.
Sigh. So, the patch 1 "fix" was a fluke, not a plan... Sigh.

If the second patch doesn't fix the problem, then it's unlikely that EA is even trying to find a solution. It would be so simple to actually create the sublots correctly in the first place, so that no additional fix was necessary.

Just to be clear: when you create an occupied unlevel apartment, you can actually move it within the neighborhood, but the terrain discrepancy remains? Or, are you having problems moving these apartments at all?

Updated the tutorial with this new information.
Test Subject
#25 Old 29th Oct 2008 at 9:13 AM
I have problems moving it at all, it seems stuck in place. But it seems to only affect my one apartment beach lot, it is the biggest and most involved so am not sure if that is the problem. The other one I created as a test seems to be moving around fine and no discrepancy.
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