History of The Sims 2 Custom Content
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Help by Thomas|TSR added Jan 15, 2007, read 43516 times
Over the past few years a lot has happened when it comes to customizable content for The Sims 2. The tools have improved, the knowledge base has expanded and the artists have reached a whole new level. We have always appreciated the long hours of dedicated work, trial and error and research that has gone into all achievements made by the modding and artist community.
On this page we want to officially give credits where credits are due. Although some people aren't specifically mentioned, we as part of the community thank you all.
Our sincerest appreciation goes to:
- Quaxi - For developing SimPE, the single most important tool for customizable content in Sims 2. This is the Sims 2 version of the Transmogrifier. Without his work we'd have very little user made content today.
- The DatGen group - For finding, documenting and enabling the many different file formats used in Sims 2. A lot of their groundwork is the basis for many of the tools used for custom content today.
- Numenor - For his groundbreaking work with enabling recolors of Maxis meshes, his many incredible tutorials and being overall helpful in the modding community.
- RGiles - For enabling recolors together with Numenor, and for his work with the Color Enabler Package (CEP).
- Skankyboy - For his SMD importer\exporter plugin that allows for proper animations.
- Wes Howe - For developing the Unimesh plugin for Milkshape, the most important tool for creating unique meshes and making them work in the game.
- Delphy - For developing the Meshtool and providing an excellent forum to help develop custom content tools to where they are today.
- The modding community - A special thanks goes out to all testers, researchers and tutorial authors out there. Without your hard work, custom content would not be where it is today.
History and Authors
Shortly after the release of Sims 2, a lot of thought and experimenting went into making it possible to recolor the meshes provided by Maxis. The breakthrough came through the joint efforts of Pinhead, RGiles and Numenor (and many other testers). Thanks to their efforts we are now able to recolor maxis meshes, as well as custom made meshes provided by other artists in the community.
To make it easier to recolor content, a talented programmer called Quaxi developed the most known and used tool for custom content today: SimPE. This tool allows you to modify every aspect of the game, including items, and make it your own. The recoloring principles are based on the CEP methods and uses a plugin called ObjectWorkshop developed by RGiles and Numenor. This is the single most important tool for custom content today, comparable with the Transmogrifier for Sims 1.
RGiles and Numenor also developed what is known as CEP (Color Enabler Package) that made it possible to recolor meshes that initially did not support this. A lot of new meshes from Maxis are now recolored using this technique, check the official CEP site for the latest version.
Roughly a year after the breakthrough with recolors, the first custom made meshes became available. This was a huge step forward when it comes to custom content and opened so many doors for the many talented artists out there. The first tool for this was developed by Delphy and Miche and was simply called the Meshtool. This tool is no longer in development but should be mentioned due to it's importance.
Shortly after Meshtool came a set of plugins for the most common 3D program used for Sims 2: Milkshape. This tool was single handedly developed by Wes Howe and is today the most used tool for creating unique meshes. It is advanced enough to even animate hair meshes, originally thanks to a plugin developed by Skankyboy, but now with full support directly through the tool itself.
A lot of artists would not be where they are today without the excellent tutorials provided by the community. Among the most prominent tutorial authors are Dr Pixel, Numenor, Windkeeper, HystericalParoxysm, CycloneSue, WDSBrianna, Tiggerypum, Tiko, Simaddict99, J.Woods, MikeInside and IgnorantBliss. There are many more to mention here, but rest assured we as part of the community appreciate your efforts.