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Fresnillo City

Started by Heblem, February 02, 2009, 11:38:53 PM

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Hi, this is a new project I started by mid of December, 2008 called Fresnillo... Fresnillo will be a realistic mid-size  fictional city in SC4, actually theres a Fresnillo in RL, but this one has nothing to do with the real one.



3. Map Plans

Ok, knowing how to sort out your plugins and your lots, you should now think in doing a map plan for your city, you can even use MS Paint for this... you should have your key lots for to figurate out how to build up your city with your proposal lots.

Here what I came when I was doing my map plan:
First I started doing a --->

3.1 Region Map Plan

Do your region map, where will be an interchange, or road, electricity, all you can think about adding, be please be gentle with you, don't add way too much because you'll never finish your own project, if you plan to do the streets, use parallel lines so you can make it easy, also you can make diagonals but if you plan to do diagonal style roads and homes, etc... here what I came with the transportation system:

As you can see I've used different lines for the transportation as like yellow, red and grey, that represent different style of roads as like streets, roads, highways, avenues, etc.

You can play more with the photoshop or anything, (try adding overlays for each section) here what I came with everything for the map plan:

Here the electricity plans, water, names, subway, municipally, names of the main avenues, point of interest, even National Parks, hehe

This plan will be very important for you to follow what you gonna plop or built next, if you don't have a plan, then you can make a city like this way. That's a very important note before to start making your city.
3.2 City Map Plan

Now you have your region map done... well lets see what I did for my main city (the first city youre going to work on)...

(consider the grid sections as explain in lots)
This small map shows avenues, and important highways, also different RCI zones, the red zone is the historic downtown.
At the right side of the map, is clearly im going to do a diagonal avenue, you have to consider every detail as like the power poles in that area, or the rails... anything before you start.

After getting your main idea start building up your city... but in paint, hehehe...
Look at this example:

You can look the red lighted area is done! and thats my main map plan for my lots to follow, many of the lots are repetitive, so I dont have to work in all, in some cases I just have to do some minor changes in some lots to make it match, but takes a minute to do that.

I've used 1 pixel brush for work exactly as like 1x1 square tile in SimCity 4, exactly as like a measure rule to figure out how it will look in game, before plopping. I've set as default 3 type of sizes for the lots, 8x8, 16x16 and 24x24 or depending as like 24x8, 16x8, 16x24, etc.

The hard work is when you do different lots as like the avenues or something characteristical, something that you dont have in your repetitive lots collection, thats something you should patiently work on LE.


4. Prepare your props.

Take in mind what you going to use most, as like traffic signals, people, homes, trees, etc.

Look for anything as like models files, sort your props files as like this:
-Street Props

ej's, FS-BLD-HotelPlaza

Is suggested that you use your own nomenclature, so it'll be easy for you to search for the prop youre looking for, with a name that you added by yourself. I'll explain here how to:

4.1 Download or make your own model file.

If youre a good batter do you own model (you can look a mine BAT tutorial here: http://sc4devotion.com/forums/index.php?topic=919.0, it helps you if youre interested in modeling your own props)

Or if not... look for some good props for download as like BSC, PK, Simgoober, LBT etc etc...

4.2 Plugin Manager (or Xtool for those who have it).

Do your prop with plugin manager, look for the model file you like and make the prop. Name it as you want with your own nomenclature. This helps you to sort your own props and easily finding. You can also add some maxis props and model files as like entire buildings!.

4.3 Make a DAT

After doing your props, you may get a long list of desc's, try to dat pack all the descs into one, using wouanagaines DatPacker. Put your own dat into Own Props folder.


5. Prepare your textures.

Is recommended to keep the textures as it is... dont use all the texture pack avalaible or it will take ages to load LE or make your own lot, use a single texture pack that you think is suitable for everything.

Personally I rather doing my own textures, as I explained at Texture Folder. I'll explain here how to do your own textures, here just an example using Adobe Fireworks on how to do a street texture.

5.1 Make a blank sheet of 128x128 pixels.

5.2 Cover the entire sheet with a grey color:

5.3 Cut off a section for the sidewalk, make to the both section are of the same height. (maybe like 30 pixels wide section)

5.4 Draw some lines over the texture (darker lines than the texture itself), you can use blur over it for better visual

5.5 Make the sidewalk, use a grey-white color over it, and apply some straight lines over and blur then...

5.6 Draw some yellow and white lines, or as you like (save a copy before you do this) so you can do different variations.

5.7 Draw some darken lines to give a smoothing realism.

And there you go, save an editable file for future references when you do new textures. As like T intersections, +, curves, wide avenues etc etc...

Here are some examples of different types of textures:

Here is a different example how I did a roundabout (it took me an hour for to do this)

First started with a simple grey circle, and a red circle in middle for remove the middle, also used a 128x128 grids for reference when I use at LE.

Then started doing the sidewalks (one by one section) and the side roads.

Continue detailing, didn't have to draw the grey line, because I already did with a small texture, I only just had to copy it over and over then attach.

Using same process I've made darken circles and lines for realism (also note that I did the lines)

And done!
After that I've used a 128x128 blank sheet for separate the entire draw into small pieces of 128x128 for LE...

I named every single piece as I said in Texture Folder section.

Once you have every texture separated, you have to make the alphas, here an example how I do fast alphas:

Select and remove the blank area...

Once removed, clarify the rest until you get it white...

Add a black background, and there you go, save the alpha...

-Ok, so now we got our texture and alpha, get into SC4 tool, select at texture creator. (Create your own textures.)

-Click on the star (New), then go to your plugins folder, exactly at your texture folder, name the new dat as like 0xF4604##0 depending of what you are doing, as I explain in Texture folder section.

-Click on Add Texture (the photo icon) and give your texture IDD as you sorted it

-Look for the texture you did and load it, After click on the camera icon to clone the same texture in different sizes (zooms)
-Do the same in down for the alpha you did. (If you texture is plain, no alpha needed)

Click ok and your texture should be made, repeat the same process over and over with others textures.

And look here and example how my turnabout looks in LE (using alphas and plain textures):

Here how it looks in game:


6. Make the lot's.

Once you have the props and textures ready, you can start making your lot as you want, remember the size of the lot, the map plan of where you plan to place your lot in game....

Do add way too many props in your lot, you can exceed a limit (I think of a 1,000 props, if not correct me please) so is suggested to work on small lots as like 8x8 in size... if youre planning something big (that the props overpass the size of the lot, you can make special sizes as like 16x16, or even 24, but no more...

Here are some lots I have done (In game pictures):
There are 11 los; A B C D E F G H I J K

You can see how I did the icon exemplars as by the letter and color, in this case is dark green of R-$$

Here's an example how I work with these lots, this is a stupid example but you can figure out how this project works:
This is the same lot, lot C, and look how it looks repeating it over and over, even I didn't rotate it...

A close pic: You clearly can see a glitch in the streets, i obvious I would have put a different lot for it, but I didn't...

A closer one, and this one you can't see this repetitive, its like when you do a rock mod, you need to do a really good texture for avoid this kind of repetitive. Thats why you have to do different variations of lots.


7.- How to share your city? for download perhaps?

Sharing this project its possible;

7.1 You need to give all the dependencies list in case if the BATs are not yours.
7.2 Upload all your BAT and props and a big Prop Packs.
7.2 Not whit the lots (if it pretended to be visual) if not, then include those.
7.3 Include your region and cities map.
7.4 As for the DATs (desc files) you did when making the props, include it by your own risk, im not sure if this mess with copy rights by the author. These desc files are for exclusive use for the project, nothing more.

The download list shouldn't be that long, I think this could be cool for downloading and sharing, so people can see in game the detail of your work.


Well hope this guide inspires you in doing a city like this, as like I did with mock town, or even this MD/Project, everything is possible if you are willing to do it.
Is theres any help or want me to clarify teach step by step how to do it right, please note to me. And sorry for my bad English and this long boring talk...

Here is a youtube video for the mock town project:

Later I'll show some pictures of my current progress, thanks!


Really impressive works, and very well detailed process !

The folder organization is really consistent for that kind of project

Organizes your plugins folder is really important. You don't need all the plugins you have downloaded, this is best when you run your game, which runs really fast without using "others people lots"
Should be in everyone mind

New Horizons Productions
Berethor ♦ beskhu3epnm ♦ blade2k5 ♦ dmscopio ♦ dedgren ♦ emilin ♦ Ennedi ♦ Heblem ♦ jplumbley
M4346 ♦ moganite ♦ Papab2000 ♦ Shadow Assassin ♦ Tarkus ♦ wouanagaine
Divide wouanagaine by zero and you will in fact get one...one bad-ass that is - Alek King of SC4


Welcome again, Heblem!

I like your map very much. It is very realistic and looks really good, your terrain mod is very apropriate to this terrain and climate type :thumbsup:

Now you amazed me, I knew your LE skills are very good and I could expect some new creative stuff, but the organization of your work is even better, and you explain it in a very clear way. Please continue!  :) &apls
Your solutions are simple yet effective. My work is similar in some aspects (dynamic Plugins folder, much less LE but more modding), so I'm thinking about improving it. When I will prepare my next cities, I will definitely look at your tutorials!   :thumbsup:

New Horizons Productions
Berethor - beskhu3epnm - blade2k5 - dmscopio - dedgren - Emilin - Ennedi
jplumbley - moganite - M4346 - nichter85 - papab2000 - Shadow Assassin - Tarkus - wouanagaine


wouanagaine: thanks! that actually works only when youre working on basically what you'll use, in this case its just the model file.

Ennedi: Its interesting, you'r MD is a pure genious, all the mods you do makes it really interesting, even for the landscapes I do really like, now imagine using this concept, you would be a god of SC4  ;D I hope you come with this idea in a near future, take care.

Well here are some pictures that I presented at ST past days, later over this week i'll be showcasing new pictures of different sections of the city.

Usually I post 5 picture by update, but this time its a speciall update (something I didn't before)

Thanks for watching, til next time  ;)

Edit: ups made a mistake, hehe


WOW!!!! heblem you are AWESOME :)

*keeps an eye on this project*

Copperminds and Cuddleswarms


This is very impressive.  Don't know what else to say.....

Robin  :thumbsup:
Call me Robin, please.


RIP Adrian (adroman), you were a great friend

My LOT thread                                    

SCAG BAe146/Avro RJ Project


Now I know how you do it!! :D

This is great and yes, you have inspired me to start my very own Fresnillo similar project, last sunday I started with a 11x11 lot and took me 3 hours to completed it :)

I'm using your ideas and now I think will use your organizing system :)

Thanks for sharing this!!! And like I told you on your CJ on Simtropolis, your work is awesome and your skills amazing.  &apls


Heblem simply amazing here wow!!! I will be watching like I did with Mock Town and Our Mini Earth... I love your works simply put it!!!!  :thumbsup:

Don't forget the SC4D Podcast is back and live on Saturdays @ 12 noon CST!! -- The Podcast soon to Return Here Linkie


JoeST: thank you!

rooker1: just that nothing more ;) thank you!

WC_EEND: thanks!

tcx: If you wish I can share you or send you some of my lots and props you you can earn the time in doing that...

Pat: thank you!

Well, not a surprisve update but something, this stills the Benito Juárez Boulevard going to east, after this update I promise going south over Lázaro Cárdenas Avenue and the CBD ;)

That looks like a famous $$$ restaurant, well valet parking is usefull here, due there not much space for parking

The overview boulevard, no more palms, see:

It seems here, some suspicious activity going there... what could be?

Til next update, thanks for watching!


Don't forget the SC4D Podcast is back and live on Saturdays @ 12 noon CST!! -- The Podcast soon to Return Here Linkie


Really impressive
I like the boulevard layout with the side road

New Horizons Productions
Berethor ♦ beskhu3epnm ♦ blade2k5 ♦ dmscopio ♦ dedgren ♦ emilin ♦ Ennedi ♦ Heblem ♦ jplumbley
M4346 ♦ moganite ♦ Papab2000 ♦ Shadow Assassin ♦ Tarkus ♦ wouanagaine
Divide wouanagaine by zero and you will in fact get one...one bad-ass that is - Alek King of SC4


Pat: thanks!

wouanagaine: thanks! hope you like this same boulevard!  ;)

Finally after hours of hard work, I got this section of the city done! this is the "Paseo Lázaro Cárdenas or Lázaro Cárdenas Pkw" located on the same Lázaro Cárdenas Avenue, this is the west side of the downtown i'll go to the old city by the next updates.
This avenue its the only CBD of this city, i know its small but enough for Fresnilloans to get a job there.
Also this is inspired by paseo de la reforma in Mexico City, its not the exactly recreation, just an inspiration...

The entire area I did....

Lets get abit close...

The US embassy in Fresnillo.... many people are making files as usual at any US embassy in mexico, lol

A Cuauhtemoc Monument in the same avenue...

This is the Fresnillo's Downtown Plaza Mall, located just 1 block from the CBD...

Edited wrong pic..


Excellent boulevard, even if I think more trees like in the real place could be added

I'm also wondering if the cars are actually moving, or if they are just props you put on the roads. ie does the city is static ?

New Horizons Productions
Berethor ♦ beskhu3epnm ♦ blade2k5 ♦ dmscopio ♦ dedgren ♦ emilin ♦ Ennedi ♦ Heblem ♦ jplumbley
M4346 ♦ moganite ♦ Papab2000 ♦ Shadow Assassin ♦ Tarkus ♦ wouanagaine
Divide wouanagaine by zero and you will in fact get one...one bad-ass that is - Alek King of SC4