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The Invisible World of Hacks

The production of the California Simmin' stories is actually a similar process to the production of a movie: I create 'sets' in which I need to shoot scenes, and I treat my Sims very much like actors. I need them to be available at my whim & I need to be able to adjust their moods & control them in ways that are not possible if you 'play' this 'game' the way Maxis set it up. (And just like a real movie, my actors whine at me & make changes to my scripts to suit their 'characters'). So I use a LOT of hacked objects & patches, some of which are entirely invisible, and some that are visible objects you place on the lot & may appear in screenshots, but you wouldn't know by looking at them that they are hacks, or what they do. I frequently mention these objects/patches on lot screenshot galleries, or in the stories where I feel it would be interesting to describe how I set up a particular scene, but I wanted to add this special section to list the various items I use that can be found on nearly all lots, or in some cases which I buy just for the scene I'm doing at the time & then delete. These patches & hacks are absolutely vital to my story production & are also very helpful if you're just wanting your Sim to get through her day without collapsing in a puddle of pee & dying.

Patches & Build/Buy enablers: Completely invisible, these patches are in effect in all lots once you install them. From Sim Slice, I am using several patches, some that fix bugs like the problem in SS where the rave bartender from Hot Date shows up in Studio Town lots & blocks traffic & the hideous 'gorilla walk'. Other patches adjust the hunger/energy boosts your Sim gets from food/espresso vendors, allow you the place the Maxis trees, flowers & shrubs on any tile, and allows Sims to gain skill points while using things like chess tables on commercial lots. I am also using the Build/buy mode enablers from Sim Slice that give you the option to enter the build/buy mode while on commercial lots. I have them for all lots for all expansions. From Laphelot's Sim's Solutions (yahoo group I am using a patch that allows Sims to use the Maxis guitar (from LL) on DT & Studio Town lots, and patches that make Maxis paintings backless (very helpful for screenshots!). From C&C Enterprises, I am using the 'no jealousy' patch, which allows Sims to engage in non-relationship threatening interactions like complimenting & giving gifts without causing jealous reactions in spouses/lovers. You will still get jealous reactions from flirting & kissing, etc.
Mood Enhancers: I use various items in various situations to fill my Sims needs without having to watch them eat & take showers & sleep. From Sim Logical, there are the Party & Leisure plants, which continuously work to keep your Sims green: the party plant keeps up all needs except Social, which it keeps pulling down, so Sims on the lot will brag & gossip like crazy. Also, it stirs up the romancing, LOL. The Leisure plant keeps all moods except hunger, fun & social up, so they'll keep going back for another plate at the buffet & heading out to the dance floor, but they won't form long lines in the bathroom. There is a similar hack by Gnohmon at Livin it up, an end table that also works continuously to keep your Sims needs green. It keeps all levels up except fun & social, which it leaves alone. The effect on the lot is more subtle than the party plant: the party plant drives Sims to social interaction, the happy table sends them looking for fun stuff to do. Another Sim Logical plant is the 'Please yourself' plant: you assign it to a particular Sim & choose the mood bar you want adjusted. Every Sim hour, it will automatically maximise or minimize that mood for the assigned Sim. This is great for Vacation lots: place one for each member of your family & assign it to maximize their hygiene levels. Then you don't have to worry about them getting the Vacation 'poopy pants' disease, even if you let them run loose. I've also used it to minimize comfort levels for Sims: if they are too high in fun & comfort, they won't stay in a hottub, so I've used it to make them stay in a hottub for scenes. (evil grin). From Around the Sims, I'm using the 'mood boosters': these come in several forms & are very decorative. These are one time green ups: you must direct your Sim to use them & it only effect that Sim. You choose between maxi & mini boost: the maxi greens up all bars, the mini brings all bars up to the middle if theyy were below middle & leaves alone any bar above the middle. Sims will never use a mood booster autonymously.
Visitor Summoners & Controllers: The most important hacks for storytelling are the visitor controllers from Sim Logical. There are a range of objects on that site that can be used to make the Sims that don't like on the lot do what you want. Foremost being the actual visitor controller (requires MM) which allows you to directly control visitors. This also works on DT & OT & Vacation lots. There is also a visitor empowerer, which makes all objects on the lot available to visitors. So, if you have a visitor & you take control of them with the controller, if you don't have the empowerer on, you will only be able to make the visitor do things that are available to them, so you couldn't make them sleep in the bed unless you had the visitor empowerer on. The visitor empowerer works on all visitors to the lot, including walk-bys, so they will walk in & cook in your kitchen. If you use the Juniper bush teleporter from Sim Logical (the green one) to summon a visitor, that visitor is automatically 'empowered' and can use all objects on the lot. Other summoners will need the empowerer on. The Bye For Now controller allows you to get rid of unwanted guests, strays & obsessed fans with a click. You can also temporarily 'send away' family members with it (just click their thumbnail to bring them back). You can use this on Vacation if you want just part of the family to be there. This is great for apartment situations, or just take a vacation without the kids, lol, or without the parents. I also use the 'quick&dirty' red juniper bush summoner from Sim Logical, and the 'Rent-a-crowd' to bring Sims to a lot. Now Gnohmon at Livin it up also has a visitor summoner: this one is a miniature version of the antique globe, and when you place it on a lot, it randomly summons Sims to come visit the house you are playing. It brings not only neighborhood Sims, but Townies, Vacation Island Tourists, Anybodies, Somebodies & Strangers, depending on which expansions you have. This is helpful for meeting new Sims & also, if you are running any kind of home business & want drop by customers, this definitely makes them drop by!
Social Interactions: New at M&M Needful Things are Social Interation hacks by Gatur & Atavera. They consist of animation files & an object iff, but there is no object to buy. Once you install them, you will have new options in your interaction menu when you click on a Sim. Some of these interactions are adult in nature, and others are new flirt, dance & kiss options, such as Caress, Boogie & Amorous Kiss. The menu just keeps growing!
Behaviour Change: A great hack I'm using is by Gnohmon at Livin it up, called 'yakyak', whenever you place one in a room, the Sims in that room will 'converse', meaning they get talk bubbles above their heads & plus signs, no matter what activity they are engaged in (except when they are sleeping). Their social & relationship levels rise. They don't make 'talk' sounds however. Inge at Sim Logical has created several institutional control systems that change Sim behavior in dramatic ways: I use the Apartment Control system in all apartments & condos on this site. Objects that are hacked to work with this system can only be used by Sims who are 'assigned' to the room the objects are in. This keeps apartment dwelling Sims from continually trying to use their neighbor's objects. I have a Sim Apartments yahoo group devoted to discussing Sim apartment issues & some members have contibuted objects that are apartment hacked for download.
Clean up & Pest Control: From Sim Logical, there are a series of signs that can be placed on the lot to get rid of unwanted pests & even Sims. I'm using the 'No Pest' on many lots, it vaporizes pests from flies, roaches & mice all the way up to Bears & Obsessed Fans. Also, the 'no busker' sign gets rid of the sax player & hurdy gurdy man on OT lots. Also, Gnohmon at Livin it up has a hacked end table, a recolor of the tacky elephant table that works on vermin only (flies, roaches, mice), a blue recolor of the 'sumpto' endtable that automatically recycles your old newspapers & tabloids. Clean up water floods & pee puddles instantly & automatically with Sim Logical's hacked bath mats. Lots of recolors available at Shiny Sim Things yahoo group. And the no-burn fireplaces from Sim Logical don't set things on fire that you place near the fireplace.
Wardrobe: C&C Enterprises has a 'pile of clothes' dresser that you can use to change a Sim's PJs, swimsuit, formalwear, etc without having to go on a DT shopping trip. It also functions as a regular dresser. I often use it on the fly: if I don't like what a Townie is wearing, I buy the pile of clothes & use the 'visitor controller' from Sim Logical to take control of that fashion victim & make them 'change clothes'. (I have build/buy mode enabler for DT so I can buy things while I'm playing DT.) There are other versions of this dresser at Sim Magick yahoo group, made from Maxis dressers. Sim Logical has Clothes changing plants you can use to make everyone on the lot change into formals, swimwear etc. There are a few varieties of this plant.
Pet Stuff: Gnohmon at Livin it up has the coolest pet hacks ever, and they can be found on any lot that I have pets on. The never-ending food bowl is not just a pet food bowl that is always full, it also fills every other food bowl on the lot, including feeding the fish, birds, turtles and all object based pets. It also replaces dead object based pets like birds. The inviso-scratching post is a cat scratch post that can be placed on tiles that are occupied by furniture, and the cat will scratch it. So, you can put them on a couch & the cat will scratch the couch. Your Sim can still sit there too. The post is visible when you buy it & it is visible when you first enter the lot (so if you need to move them, you can find them) and then they turn invisible after a few minutes. The pet nap is an invisible object you can place on couches & it will make your pets sleep on the couch. It is the cutest thing, but beware: the way it functions is to 'trick' your pet into thinking it is human & forcing it to 'nap' on the couch like a human. If the pet is woken up by a TV, stereo or computer, it will still temporarily think it's human & maybe try to microwave a meal for itself. Gnohmon also has a self-cleaning litterbox, which also cleans up the 'social objects' made by dogs, which apparently the game isn't cleaning up properly. Don't ask me, ask Gnohmon And do check out gnohmon's crazy pet bed, it can temporarily make pets think they are human & humans think they are pets I have not used this in the stories, not yet anyway (evil grin) but felt it worth mentioning. I tested this object & it was beyond fun....From Lost Sims, I have a plot of catnip that even dogs enjoy playing in. It increases fun & hunger for pets. Sim Slice has an at home pet gym, very cool.
Superstar Stuff: Gnohmon at Livin it up again has some really awesome SS cheat hacks. First is a clone of the hedge (bush, in plants) that came with SS, when you place it on a Studio Town lot, it makes your Sim's choices in the photo shoot, recording studio, fashion runway & movie & TV sets be exactly what the director was looking for: no more mistakes, your Sim performs perfectly every time, no matter what sequence you choose. It also keeps your Sim's moods completely green throughout. When I tested this object (I am a beta tester at LIU as well as housebuilder) I took one Sim from lot to lot (each with bush in place) and he advanced 3 star levels without getting tired, hungry or having to go potty. From Gnohmon there is also the superstar charm: it looks like the charm you make for the fame spell in MM, but you buy it in buy mode & just place it in your Superstar Sims home: Your Superstar Sim will not lose the gold star over their head if they don't go to Studio Town as long as they have this sculpture on their lot. Also, lower level fame path Sims can use this sculpture to restore their highest level of achieved fame if they stay home & their level drops. But wait, there's more, the charm will also transport a Sim to Studio Town (it goes to lot 85, but you can call a car to go to other lots). It's instant, not like a cab ride, and with it you can go more than once a day, if you want. From the Simfully 3 yahoo group, I'm using a patch for the SS photo shoot that allows you to have your Sim pose in their whole wardrobe of outfits, including nude.
Makin Magic: Personally, I have hardly dabbled in the MM expansion, I've never even hatched a dragon & have no idea what those dueling thingers are about. So I'm not really the best source for info about MM hacks. But here's what I've got. "Free the Magic" by Cravze at Livin it up is a sculpture that your Sim can use to get spells & charms & unlimited magic coins. I was able to buy a residential Magic Town lot to build my 'Sandman' movie sets for the filmmaking scenes with this cheat. It also offers other things like interest & skill points, so it is more than a MM cheat. Gnohmon has also tackled MM & has created buyable charms, buyable crystals, a flower that gives your Sim all spells, a climbable root/beanstalk...well, I get all the spells/charms & whatnots confused as I've only used a few of them, they only fit in the Serena/Byron story, but I do know that you can cheat your way into wizardry with Gnohmon's MM hacks, visit the 'Hacked' section at Livin it up.
Adult: I use several hacked 'Love' objects from M&M Needful Things. Beds, rugs, showers, counters, picnic table & desk. These objects have adult animations & are therefore for adults only. I blur out anything I need to blur for story scenes, and the counter/desk/picnic table objects have initial animations where the Sims remain clothed, so sometimes I do counter scenes where I only show the clothed part. Because you can make a Sim 'sit' on one of these counters, I use it to create a naturalistic kitchen atmosphere. If you place a 'yakyak' by gnohmon at Livin it up in the same room, you can have one Sim preparing a meal & another Sim sitting on the counter & they will chat. How nice! When the meal is prepared, just cancel 'sit' out of thee Sim's queue & they will go eat. Or, have another Sim go 'make out' with the seated Sim & eat later. Your choice...LOL. If the yakyak is still in the room, the Sims will continue to chat while making out. Also, I am using the default nudes by Kamma available at M&M Needful things yahoo group.
Channel Sim
Bold & Sexy Sims
Meet the Characters & Read the Stories. Stories are for Mature readers, and may contain content not suitable to children under 16 or more sensitive readers. Tour Sim L.A.: visit the lot screenshot galleries, get links to objects sites. (Lots available for download at calisims yahoo group) All the Misc. stuff: Out-takes section, Links, Calisims award, Contact info