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Sims 3 CAS Content Upload Guidelines

When uploading a Create-a-Sim content for The Sims 3 to Mod The Sims, we have some basic requirements to ensure that your upload is good, shown well, and has the correct info and files needed for people to use it in their games. This allows both moderators to check your uploads for quality, and for downloaders to see if your item is something they want to add to their games.


Quality

Textures
If you have made or modified textures for your creations:
  • Clear: Textures should be clear, crisp, and not pixellated.
  • Brightness: Neon or bright colours are fine, but don't go too bright - 80% saturation is usually plenty for even neon textures, but more just looks blinding!
  • Black and white: For your main texture and for stencils/logos, most of the time for black or white, you should use very light grey and very dark grey, not pure black and pure white.
  • Highlights and shadows: Even skin-tight items should have some highlights on areas like breasts, tummy, butt, knees, and thighs, and should have shadows on areas like underarms, crotch, middle of the back, etc.
  • Details: Details like buttons, seams, shadows, bellybuttons, etc., should be in the right place and look like they fit the shape they're texturing. If you use photos as your texture base, you may need to adjust these significantly, and choose your photos wisely.
  • Additional texture types: Additional texture types should be done well also, with bump maps fitting the item and looking correct, and speculars not set too shiny, etc.
  • Adult skintones: Skintones uploaded to MTS must be "barbie" below the waist - that is, you may include nipple details but not genitals or pubic hair. Such items are welcome at our adult site, Sexy Sims.
  • Channels and CASTability: Simple designs in one colour should always be done with channels. Non-recolourable designs should generally only be used for more complex logos, patterns, etc. that cannot be split easily into recolourable channels. Whenever possible, an item should be made versatile to recolour with the Create-a-Style tool, with multiple channels for customization.
  • Choice of mesh: If you're retexturing a mesh, the style of textures should match the mesh shape (for example, a tuxedo on a skin-tight mesh doesn't make much sense), and the mesh should be one that's decently well-made.

RightArrow.gif Tip: You can find great info on making quality textures in the TS3 CAS Tutorials.

Meshes
These apply only if you have made a new 3D model or "mesh" for your creation:
  • Polygon count: Your poly count should be reasonable for the item, usually in line with the poly counts of a similar item from the game.
  • Morphs: Morphs should work properly, generally resemble the EA morph size/shape (unless you have a good reason otherwise, like specifically creating a new body type) and look nice.
  • UV Map: The texture/UV map should not be seriously distorted.
  • Mesh shape: The mesh shape should generally be fairly realistic - looking as if it's subject to gravity, with body parts done in a believable sort of way (for example, no boobs the size of minivans that levitate around the collarbones, please).
CAST Presets
Uploads which are purely of Create-a-Style presets (no new textures or meshes made yourself) must be done as a useful, versatile set: carefully thought out and with some sort of theme (for example, a full set of natural hair colours, or a range of basic recolours of mens' shirts). The same for textures above applies to CAST presets - not too bright or too dark, not pure black or pure white, etc.


Files

File Types
You may upload your creation(s) as sims3pack files or package files within your rar/zip/7z file(s). You may also offer downloaders both types so they can choose which they prefer.
Zip, Rar, or 7z
To upload your file(s) to MTS, you will need to compress them into an archive file, which makes them smaller and allows you to include many files in one download. The archive file formats we currently accept are .zip, .rar, and .7z.

For instructions on compressing your files into an archive, please see: Creator Guidelines: Creating Archive Files.

  • Do not include multiple archives with the same contents - that is, please don't put your files in both a .zip as well as a .rar because some people only want .zip files. Choose one format.
  • Do not double-compress your files... a .rar file inside another .rar file (or any other archive inside another) doesn't compress it anymore, and it makes it so we can't see the contents without downloading, and also just makes an extra step for the people downloading.
  • The file size limit on MTS is 50 mb. If you exceed this limit you will need to split your archives. This should probably never come up except for large worlds for The Sims 3, or huge sets of smaller items.
Your mesh?
Please note that if you are uploading recolours of your own mesh, you need to upload the mesh to MTS as well. Please don't link elsewhere for people to get your mesh, unless it's already on MTS. You will need to provide additional pictures and information for a new mesh upload.


Information

Title & Description
Give your upload a descriptive title and write a text description for your upload, describing what you're uploading. Your title and description must be in English or provide an English translation. If you are not a native English speaker, using Google Translate is okay. You can also ask for help writing your description in the Creator Feedback Forum.
Information to include
Make sure your upload text contains at least the following information:
  • The age(s) and gender(s) your item(s) are for (example: "This works for teen and young adult females.")
  • The category your upload appears in in CAS (example: "This outfit shows up in the everyday and formal categories.")
  • The number and description of the recolourable channels of your creation (example: "This has 3 channels: shirt, belt, and trim")
  • If you have made a new mesh, you need to include polygon counts (for LOD1, or LOD0 if you're uploading a hair). If you don't know how to check your mesh's poly count, see Tiptorial:Poly Counts for Creators.
Expansions Required
Make sure to select only the expansions needed for the content you're uploading. New meshes usually require only the base game. Retextures/CAST Presets of Expansion pack (EP) or Stuff Pack (SP) content will require that EP or SP. If you are unsure about what EPs/SPs your content requires, ask before uploading in the CAS Parts Forum on MTS.


Screenshots

Screenshots
You will need to include certain screenshots with your creation. You must:
  • Have at least one picture of each item you are sharing, showing the whole thing from the front, and focusing on the item you're sharing (example: for shoes, you need to zoom in on the feet, not a take a full-body pic).
  • For new hair or clothing meshes, you should also show your creation from other angles - at least the back and sides - and show the morphs in your pics (where applicable).
  • For creations with recolourable channels, show how they work taking at least one picture using different colours on the parts in Create-a-Style. For items like hair, eyes, makeup, etc., it's best to show a few pics of how your creation can look with different CAST styles (dark and light hair, dark and light eyes, etc). These pics can be collaged together if you like.
  • For CAST presets where all the items are variations on the same textures (like hair or eye colours), it's okay to show decent-sized swatches of each preset, rather than full-size pics of everything.
  • For skintones: If you're uploading a skin, please blur or otherwise cover the butt crack and crotch of both genders, and the female nipples. Sims can wear extremely skimpy clothing, or you can blur or cover those areas in a photo editor. You should show your skin's colour range, and pics of each age and gender it's for.

Keep the following in mind for your screenshots, especially the required ones:

  • Size: 600 pixels or more on the smallest side is a good size to aim for. Your images can be up to 2560x1440 pixels, and 800 kb, so you have lots of space to work with!
  • Lighting: For most things, it's best to take pictures in an interior room with good lighting. For lots, pictures should be taken during a nice sunny day, for floorplans, take the pictures with the lights ON.
  • Clarity: Neither blurry, nor pixellated/crunchy. Do not size up small pictures to make a large one as this will blur them, and make sure not to use too much compression/too low quality when saving your images.
  • Distance: Take your pictures so that your creation fills the screen without anything cut off at top or bottom - neither zoomed in too close, nor zoomed out too far.
  • Distortion: If you resize your images, retain the aspect ratio so they don't get stretched or squashed. Take care when zooming in and out with the camera that you do not create a fisheye effect on your pictures.
  • Photoshopping: Do not apply filters like sharpen, contrast, etc. to the required pictures, as downloaders want to see what your creation will look like in their game, not your skills at using Photoshop.
  • Attached: All required images must be attached directly to the MTS upload, not just inserted using the img tag, so that even if the pics get deleted from your Photobucket (or other host), the upload on MTS is still complete.
  • Show all items: For most areas, if you are uploading a set, you must take all the required pics for each item in the set. If there is an exception, it will be noted.
  • Picture limit: You may upload up to 100 pictures for a single upload thread, so feel free to add some additional pictures just to show off your work to its best. Of course, keep it reasonable - nobody needs 50 pics to show off one sim or hair.
  • Inline pictures: Inline pictures are those that use the [img] tag to show up in with the description text. So that it doesn't take too long to load, please keep this to no more than 4 pictures done inline, unless you put them inside an [infobutton] tag. To do this, see our guide on post formatting.

Please remember, for your required pictures:

  • In-game: You must put a sim on a lot and take pictures of them there, not in Create-a-Sim, as the way it renders textures is different and doesn't show what you really get in-game. Morphs and channels can be shown in CAS though.
  • Uncovered: You should take pictures of sims modelling your content in basic poses without arms or legs in the way, use short or pulled-back hair on a clothing model, no bangs/fringe obscuring makeup or eyes, nothing in the way of the view of your content (except for skintone censoring, if you've made a skin).


Tip: You may, of course, include additional other pictures presenting your creations however you like, and you can get as creative with them as you want.  :)

Other

Uploads not allowed on MTS
These items are not allowed on MTS in any category.
Pay/Pirated Content

Everything required or recommended for an upload must be freely available, without having to pay.

  • No uploads requiring pay content: We do not host content (for example, recolours of a pay hair or object mesh) that absolutely require pay content to function in-game.
  • No optional pay, pirated, or stolen content: Even for optional or recommended content not absolutely required for the creation to work (for example, hair on a sim or a couch on a lot), this means:
    • No content you must pay for. This means you cannot use items that are pay, donation, subscriber only, "special gift", etc. type content, anything accessible only when you pay money or subscribe.
    • No content from sites that are repositories of unmodified content when it is still available from the original creator, whether these items are pay or free (no Booty or Simscave, torrents, sites full of stolen content or similar, but the Graveyard and sites that offer recolours or modifications with the mesh are okay).
    • No EA content simply converted to base game use with no other changes.
    • No pirated EA Store content. EA Store content, linked to the legitimate EA Store, is okay though.
Other content not allowed
  • Items that belong on the adult site: No content posted on MTS can have visible nudity, sexual content, or adult content, and instead must be posted on our adult site, Sexy Sims. This means on MTS, you may not post:
    • Content that contains nudity, which we define as exposing the female nipples, or the butt crack/genitals of either gender, including semi-transparent stuff like a sheer bra. Items that are merely "sexy" like skimpy miniskirts or string bikinis are fine on MTS. Transsexual/transgender items are also not considered adult content unless they contain nudity.
    • Skintones containing genital details - female nipples are okay on MTS but see below regarding screenshots.
    • Images of skintones with uncensored female nipples. Please blur or cover the nipples, butt crack, and genital area when taking screenshots of your skintones.
    • Fine art uploads containing visible nudity.
    • Items with specifically sexual content (sex toys, sexual poses).
    • Items containing swear/curse words
    • Items relating to illegal drugs. Prescription and over-the-counter drugs, alcohol, and tobacco are okay on MTS though.
  • Sexualized children: We do not allow any sexy/sexualized content for baby, toddler, or child sims in any way - no breasts whatsoever on child sims, no "sexy" outfits, etc. If you want to make preteens, make a less developed body for teen sims. Sexualized child content is not allowed at our adult site either.
  • Offensive content: Racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic, bigoted, hateful or otherwise offensive content will not be allowed. Again, also not allowed at our adult site.
  • EXE installers: Creators are not allowed to post exe (or other executable) files for any area of the site but Modding Tools. If your content needs to be installed to a certain directory, you can compress your files and leave the directory structure intact, so you can tell people to just install to Program Files, for instance, and the files will go where they need to. Executable installers can easily hold viruses, and are generally not needed for installing most content.
  • Preorder bonus content: Certain items were only available if you preordered certain expansions or stuff packs from certain retailers. It's unfortunate if someone missed out on getting them, but they can't be redistributed here as EA has made it clear that they do not allow it.
  • Unmodified EP/SP/Store content: While it is common practice to modify and use bits and pieces of game content to create custom content, extracting content from an expansion, stuff pack, or Store item and uploading it unmodified is not allowed on this site. You are welcome to upload significantly modified versions of expansion, stuff pack, or Store content, but you can't just be ripping it and changing one tiny thing (or nothing) just so people who didn't purchase it can still use it.
  • Converted game content: You can freely modify sims game meshes and textures for use in any sims game, and EA doesn't seem to mind conversions of sims game/store content. However, you may not use meshes and textures from any other game to make Sims content to upload without permission from the original creator - i.e. the company that made the game you're taking pieces from.
  • Stolen/reuploaded content: This should go without saying, but do not upload content made by others and claim it as your own, in whole or in part. Don't upload the work of someone else without their permission... if they wanted to share it at MTS, they can easily upload it here themselves.
  • Uncredited content/violating permissions: If any part of what you have uploaded (mesh, textures, alphas, bump maps, coding, etc.) comes from somebody else's work, you MUST provide a link and credit in the text of your post, for the original author. State what you've used of theirs, the author's name, and give a link back to them. You must check the author's policies to see if you can use their content in the way you want, and you may not violate any policies stated. If there are no policies or they don't disallow your type of usage, or the site is permanently offline, then you can assume it's okay. Please see here for more details: Updates and Remixes of Creations.
  • Redirects: If you want to move a creation to another site, please remove your upload from MTS, don't just edit the text to point to a different site.