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Tiko's Blog

Andy has retired

After recovering from his illness Andy has chosen to retire from The Sims community to spend more time with his family. We wish him well and hope he'll enjoy his newfound life. Take care Andy!

Tiko - Burst Appendix - Peritonitis

Andy was admitted to hospital just after we got back from holiday. Appendicitis was suspected. It then ruptured, and gangrene and severe peritonitis were diagnosed.

The surgery went fine, but he is very weak and will be convalescing for another week or two.

He sends everyone his best wishes. - Ruth

Summer Holiday - away until the end of July

We'll be on holiday from tomorrow (Saturday 14 July) until the end of the month. We're away in Cumbria again for a week, taking Lord Tiko with us for his first trip to the seaside this time!

Then we're calling home to leave him (cat-sat by our son and his girlfriend) and to collect our 2 copies of Deathly Hallows via Amazon, then going away to a secret location!!! ;)

The Order of the Phoenix movie

We went to see The Order of the Phoenix movie at a preview showing yesterday, before the crowds starting arriving. We were thrilled and moved to tears by it.

I'm not someone who found the book a mess, or bloated. Because I've experienced the utter crulety of people and organisations who smile and simper while they try to destroy you, I shared Harry's frustration, doubt and anger immediately, and read through the book a second time immediately. So I was thrilled and moved to see how superb an actor Daniel Radcliffe is becoming, and how movingly he conveyed all of this, and how tender his scenes with his godfather and real-life pal Gary Oldman were. Immelda Staunton also increased the visibility of Umbridge's inner darkness step by step, better than the book does.

David Yates and his crew have done a marvellous job of rendering the world a dark, fearful place, full of denial and lies. It was almost Matrix-dark! And we all knew many sub-plots would have to be jettisoned with the bigger books - the only one I really missed here was Jo Rowling's brilliant - nay, profound - exposition of prophecy and how it operates in human lives. This meant the final great scene between Harry and Dumbledore was slightly empty of its full meaning.

But in the absence of many sub-plots, we had a really tightly scripted, fast-paced and subtle drama, where CGI was so well rendered as not to be noticed (Grawp excepted, I suppose). The battles in the Ministry were sensationally well plotted and rendered. Because Yates has only directed TV film dramas before I had expected the CGI and action to be a bit tame - but not at all.

And praise, surely, for Michael Goldenberg's screenplay - re-writing many details and adding visual jokes all over the place that always made sense and simplified the many storylines without diminishing the overall arc of story, like Umbridge torturing many students, not just Harry, or Cho betraying the Army, unwillingly. Wasn't the white cat on the plate running to tell 'mummy' that Harry, Hermione and Ron were about to use her fireplace so brilliant? And without Peeves being mentioned in any of the films, George and Fred couldn't leave while shouting "Give her hell from us, Peeves!" ..... but their exit was still an explosion of joy and liberation.

Loved it.

The "weather in my house" problem with boats!

I spent nearly 30 hours play-testing the two versions of the Marlin, and couldn't solve a slight "weather in my house" problem. It seemed that Sims thought the sloping curved bow area wasn't weather-tight! So I went ahead and published the boats yesterday anyway with a note.

But this morning I went back and blitzed every test site as permanent winter. Guess what - it was the VaporWare Submergence Spa hot tub (the more expensive of the game's default tubs). Placed on the stage it creates a large hole. With the cheaper Bubble-Up Soaking Zone Hot Tub the boats should now be weather-proof!

I've changed the pics as well as the descriptions - and the Sims2Packs ..... well I think I have! ;)

Fishing boat - The Marlin

In the Coastal Lots theme, I wanted to start adding some liveable boats and ships that are good homes for Sims, not just novelty items for the 'hood. :lol: The first is called The Marlin (how original!) and is a very comfy, if tight-spaced, home for 4 Sims - more if you want to build up the buildings on the shore. The most time was needed on getting the under decks living area weather-tight in Seasons. We have to provide stairs, but for this kind of fast fishing boat the bridge isn't sealed so the stairs aren't covered. I eventually realised that maritime designers know their stuff, so the stairwell is open to the elements, but the rooms are sealed!!! Here's a couple of piccies: &

Coastal Lots - a tutorial

The next FA theme will be a Maritime one, and so I thought it would be useful for everyone if I could post a short tutorial on creating your own Coastal or Seaside Lots. The point about them, as you can see from my recent entries, is that we can in effect remove the back boundary of the lot and allow the neighborhood sea to flood into the lot. Here's the preview pic for the tutorial:

A beach house too ...

Thinking that it would be good to add some starters to place into the sea like my Rimini set, I've just posted up a beach house called Goodman's Pier. I've fitted an invisible driveway as well - boards on sand, of course ;) - and the upper roof gives a lot of room to expand. Here are 2 screenies, and you can see bigger pics in my Upcoming column. The final house is slightly different from the one being hit by lightning. The sea views are really lovely (I think!) - the second pic may give you some idea. &

Genuine seaside lots - into the sea!

Well, I've decided to explore creating lots that flow into the real, neighborhood sea. It's easiest to do this in OFB's Bluewater Village (on the shore by the business area), or any similar low-lying 'hood where the road is about 10 clicks higher than the sea. The point about these lots is that, once you've worked out the slopes, the sea will invade the lot as you plan (or not!!!) so you can create all kinds of bays, harbours and ports that flow naturally into the Sims sea. So here's a couple of pics of a forthcoming harbour - part of a set - that I'm road-testing at the moment. I've called it Porto di Rimini (= Rimini Harbour) :- &

WooHoo! - New Computer Up & Running

Took nearly a week but my new computer is now loaded, and wonderful. I've just finished transferring all the main settings and folders, and it seems a blast!!

Sorry to have been out of TSR for nearly a week, but I can start offering stuff again and talking!!! Yay. :)

Latest Headlines

Andy has retired Tiko - Burst Appendix - Peritonitis Summer Holiday - away until the... The Order of the Phoenix movie The "weather in my house"... Fishing boat - The Marlin Coastal Lots - a tutorial A beach house too ... Genuine seaside lots - into the... WooHoo! - New Computer Up & Running
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