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Pettifogging Legalist!
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#1 Old 25th Jul 2009 at 4:15 PM Last edited by Delphy : 16th Jul 2010 at 7:22 PM.
Default [Tutorial] Split-level stairs Quick walkthrough
How to do this type of stairs in TS3 (will work for TS2, too):







The way this works is basically identical to TS2, with the exception that you can't do "clicks" of the terrain tool with any degree of precision in TS3 anymore, so you need to use stairs as a measurement instead. Some people already did this in TS2 too, they won't notice a difference at all.

Screenshots above are from this upload ("Wee Barnoid #05", by myself).


Please note that this is only a walkthrough for people who already know how split levels work, but for some reason aren't sure about split level stairs and/or about the differences between TS2 and TS3. It is not a generic split level or stairs tutorial and will never be, since there are already 2 billion others of those I'm only posting it to help people make the connection between split levels in general and this particular type of stairs.

If you don't know how the cfe cheat works or what a split level is, this tutorial isn't for you please do not post here, take a look at the wiki > Build Mode instead. Regarding stairs in TS3, also check out this thread.

Note for TS3 players who never used TS2: most of Build Mode is nearly identical in both games don't ignore TS2 tutorials thinking they aren't for you, it's very likely they will work for TS3 too. Some of the newer tutorials on this site already point this out, but the older ones often don't (since they were written before TS3 existed).



Step 0



Before you do anything else, turn off the auto roofs. They are useless and will only get in the way. (If anyone knows how to disable this option by default, I'd be grateful if you'd post about it.)


Step 1



Make a box for your lower level, and two small boxes where your stairs will be. Those are not technically necessary, but you'll probably want walls somewhere near the stairs later on and those will need to be sloped it's easier if you build them now (you can always delete them again) instead of building them later and having to re-do the stairs.


Step 2




Make a box for your upper level, add flooring, add walls around the stairs and the landing.


Step 3



Make an 8 steps deep hole somewhere on the side where the landing is, and build a wall in that hole. (TS2 users: don't bother trying to make an "8-click deep hole", it won't work. Clicks aren't a precise measurement in TS3 anymore.)


Step 4



Turn on cfe, and bring down the landing to the same height as the wall in the hole. This will result in a landing that's 8 steps high you can also do a 12 steps high landing simply by making your hole only 4 steps deep, or a 4 steps high one by flattening from a piece of foundation instead (you can skip the stairs/hole business in that case, foundations are exactly 4 steps high already).


Step 5



Build stairs from your upper floor down to the landing (I usually build stairs on both sides and then delete one of them again, in order to have the walls sloped equally on both sides).


Step 6



Build a stair from the landing down to the ground floor. You'll need to delete the innermost wall of the "stair box" underneath it before you do so, since a stair can't be placed through a wall.


Step 7



Add some sort of roofing on top of the landing (now is a good time since the ceiling above it will likely become sloped later on, depending on what you want to do with the upper level, and the roof tool does not like slopes). Most likely you'll want to build some sort of wall on top of this, so if you use a shed roof like in the screenshot, you'll need to delete its inner wall.


Step 8 ff

The stairs are done now, it's up to you what to do with the upper level from here on out. Add a dummy level on top of it if you want a flat roof or add more levels, build a Bigger Attic-type roof, build only a small box and use the rest for a roof terrace, etc pp. In most cases you will have to flatten the top level somehow (at least temporarily) in order to build anything on it -- this works the same as the landing: make a hole using stairs, build 2 walls in it, and flatten.



The floor immediately left and right of the stairs will be sloped on the top floor, so you need to somehow incorporate that in your building. Use it for a chimney, make the room below it 2-story, leave it open, or just wall it in and pretend it doesn't exist. (This is the reason I often make my landings poke out of the building -- one useless sloped tile less to take care of).


I hope that explains everything.

Please do not PM me with questions, post here instead.

All my stuff for TS2 TS3 TS4

In the kingdom of the blind, do as the Romans do.
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Lab Assistant
#2 Old 25th Jul 2009 at 7:08 PM
Two Q
First, thank you PlasticBox for that tuto w/ clear pics !
And to be clear, ever if I knew CFE from TS2, I'm not at ease w/ that tech.

1. I don't anderstand last step : why we have to dig a hole and use two walls, how deep is that hole ? I flattermed from the side of the house and it worked ...

2. The tiles aside the stairs on top floor ain't usable, are they ? They got flop, even after flattering top floor ...

Simmy greetings
Pettifogging Legalist!
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Original Poster
#3 Old 25th Jul 2009 at 9:21 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by tchoa91
1. I don't anderstand last step : why we have to dig a hole and use two walls, how deep is that hole ? I flattermed from the side of the house and it worked

Exactly *how* you flatten the top floor (and to what height) is completely up to you -- what you do with the rest of the house is beyond the scope of this walkthrough. You should just do it in a way that doesn't change the landing (e.g. flatten it from the opposite side, like in the pic).

Quote:
Originally Posted by tchoa91
2. The tiles aside the stairs on top floor ain't usable, are they ? They got flop, even after flattering top floor

Yes, that's what I meant in the last bit: "The floor immediately left and right of the stairs will be sloped on the top floor, so you need to somehow incorporate that in your building".

All my stuff for TS2 TS3 TS4

In the kingdom of the blind, do as the Romans do.
Lab Assistant
#4 Old 26th Jul 2009 at 10:42 AM
Default Thaks & pics
Hello plasticbox,

Thaks so much for andswering me. Everything was in your original post, sorry, I'm stupid sometimes ...

Though, despite the difficulty of the technique, your walkthrough is really clear and easy to follow.

Here are captures of my tests making large slip stairs all inside the house in a corner (I let all possible windows) =>
Screenshots
Pettifogging Legalist!
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Original Poster
#5 Old 26th Jul 2009 at 3:14 PM
Thank you for posting those screenshots -- they're a very good example for doing the same thing, only different =).

All my stuff for TS2 TS3 TS4

In the kingdom of the blind, do as the Romans do.
In the Arena
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#6 Old 26th Jul 2009 at 8:23 PM Last edited by ellacharm3d : 29th Aug 2009 at 9:44 AM. Reason: edited link
@plasticbox, tutorial up. I posted it here

I'm still trying to get the smallest stairwell possible in Sims 3, that 6x6 stairwell area is too big for my starter houses' floorplans. Smallest footprint so far for a 3-level house is 4x4, to counteract the overlapping limitation. I've been reading all you guys' tips and going over TS2 stuff again to get inspiration.

@tchoa91, great job, you catch on fast!
I had to re-do and bulldoze and rebuild countless times when I started doing this circular and split-level stuff even back in Sims 2 when using CFE and modular stairs were relatively easier
Test Subject
#7 Old 21st Aug 2009 at 6:38 PM Last edited by l3lake : 23rd Aug 2009 at 11:39 PM.
First I want to thank you so much for making this. Worked wonderfully!

I have run into a problem I'm not sure is fixable though. I wanted to do this type of stair going up three stories, but one of the stair pieces will not place. At first I thought maybe something on the house was messing it up, so I did the technique from scratch on a blank lot and the same stair would not place. Is there no way around this?

[edit] Nevermind, I figured it out, thanks!
Test Subject
DELETED POST
8th Sep 2009 at 8:21 AM
This message has been deleted by Srikandi. Reason: Double post
Test Subject
#8 Old 8th Sep 2009 at 8:26 AM
Thanks so much for sharing this!
I can't wait to go and try this.

We're sorta like 7-11; we're not always doing business, but we're always open.
Test Subject
#9 Old 11th Sep 2009 at 5:30 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by l3lake
I wanted to do this type of stair going up three stories, but one of the stair pieces will not place. At first I thought maybe something on the house was messing it up, so I did the technique from scratch on a blank lot and the same stair would not place. Is there no way around this?

I have exactly the same problem, but i can't understand how to place stairs between 2 and 3rd floor, can you help me, please?

~ ________________ ~ ________________ ~
...bowie has changes my world upside down...
In the Arena
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#10 Old 11th Sep 2009 at 10:14 PM
Try placing them top-down (ie start at your highest floor level) and they can't overlap on subsequent floors/levels
Forum Resident
#11 Old 5th Oct 2009 at 2:30 AM
Thanks a lot for taking the time to make this, plasticbox. It helped me out a lot

Nightly
"...because as you know, Betty is the God of Arm Hair."
Pettifogging Legalist!
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Original Poster
#12 Old 6th Oct 2009 at 12:22 AM
Just a heads-up -- if you want to discuss split-level stairs in general (not only this particular make and model), can you use a general split level thread for that please? Like for example this one: http://www.modthesims.info/showthread.php?t=351130

I just moved a few posts from here to there, because here the discussion would only get lost -- this thread is only about one particular solution, not about general discussion. Thank you.

All my stuff for TS2 TS3 TS4

In the kingdom of the blind, do as the Romans do.
Test Subject
#13 Old 8th Oct 2009 at 5:38 AM
Thanks, Plasticbox! You're my hero! <3
Test Subject
#14 Old 4th Nov 2009 at 7:35 PM
hey first of all, great tutorial, i could understand it really easily but at one point i have a problem, look at this picture:





the wall from the first stairs is to high, i want it from the ground to the platform and not from the roof to the platform.

thanks a lot

Frags

ps: my englisch is not as good as my german, so please don't tease me
Pettifogging Legalist!
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Original Poster
#15 Old 9th Nov 2009 at 7:22 AM
You need to delete that wall, then close the room, then build the stairs again (inside the closed room with walls all around). The side walls of the stairs will be added automatically (they're a special type of walls that gets added to indoor stairs automatically).

All my stuff for TS2 TS3 TS4

In the kingdom of the blind, do as the Romans do.
Test Subject
#16 Old 9th Nov 2009 at 4:50 PM
ah, okay

i thought i need to built the wall by myself, now it is down and i thank your for your help
Test Subject
#17 Old 15th Nov 2009 at 3:22 PM
Just wanted to say Thank you for a great tutorial. After learning about dummy levels in Ellacharm3d's tutorial I can now build stairs inside my houses with nice little landings thanks to your tutorial. I do however fear that any house I build in the future will now contain at least one staircase with split level landings lol.

Again, thanks bunch
Test Subject
#18 Old 10th Jan 2010 at 11:26 PM
BWUAH!
Thank you for the great tutorial I have been looking for one of these tutorials for a very long time and now I found yours.
Amazing :3
Thanks again~
Lab Assistant
#19 Old 24th Feb 2010 at 9:41 AM
Thanks for this awesome tutorial :-)

You can find my work at Just Another Sims Site
Test Subject
#20 Old 17th Mar 2010 at 8:51 PM
Thank you for the refresher.
Test Subject
#21 Old 21st Jun 2010 at 8:55 PM
Oh my God, I wanted to thank you sooo much! I'm such a fan of your Barnoids (can you see who thanks them?) and always wondered how you did the stairs. I combined this tutorial with your "bigger attic" tutorial and just... thank you. It frustrated me, trying to come up with ideas how you got two six by six stairs (without cheating). Admittedly, my first house looked a bit like one of your Barnoids, but I'm just heading back to try things 'my' way. Thanks again!
Test Subject
#22 Old 3rd Jul 2010 at 9:26 PM Last edited by yucaipa_scrapbooker : 3rd Jul 2010 at 10:16 PM.
My Walls look weird on the outside
I hope you can help me, I love the tutorial that you posted! You are a God LOL. Anyway, when I do the stairs and I am done, the wall (or paint) design goes downward. Whatever I put on the outside wether it be paint, rock, etc, that wall that the stairs are attached to the pain goes into a "V" shape. Can you help? Thank you so so much!



Pettifogging Legalist!
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Original Poster
#23 Old 4th Jul 2010 at 2:31 AM
That's how it works .. those walls are slanted, just like the indoor ones, because that's how you get them to be less high. There's nothing you can do about it.

All my stuff for TS2 TS3 TS4

In the kingdom of the blind, do as the Romans do.
Test Subject
#24 Old 4th Jul 2010 at 4:44 AM
Oh ok, I wasnt sure if it was suppose to be like that. I appreciate you letting me know about that
Field Researcher
#25 Old 22nd Aug 2010 at 12:49 PM Last edited by amora_selvagen : 22nd Aug 2010 at 4:41 PM.
My english is poor...and i do not know what CFE mean...Cold you tell me please!!!!?
no need anymore..i found out..lol...thanks I will try today!!!

I am Brazilian but I live in Switzerland!!!!
Call me Paula if you want :)
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