Toolkit Chapter 05.5 Helping the Player

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This tutorial assumes you know basic navigation and keyboard shortcuts to navigate the Creation Kit. If not, please go back and check out the Creation Kit 101 primer.

All of my guides will highlight things that are specific to your experience level: Green for beginners, and Red for seasoned modders. So if you’re new, you aren’t meant to understand the red messages, and if you’re a vet - you can probably skip the green.


This guide is for things that I’ve started doing since the mod’s release that didn’t fit easily into any of the other tutorials, but are important enough to justify their own guide.

These are steps that will bring your buildings even closer to perfection in the eyes of the player.

Just like the Advanced Possibilities guide, this tutorial will grow over time.

Menu Selectable Building Plan

As of patch 2.0.0, players can now directly select the building model for a plot. To facilitate this, the ExtraPlaqueInfo property of the building plan is used (found by expanding the Advanced section of your building plan). To set this up so that the player can select your building and get the appropriate prompt, follow these steps.

  1. In the Object Window, expand Miscellaneous and click on Messages, then filter for kgSIM_BuildingInfo_Template
  2. Duplicate the kgSIM_BuildingInfo_Template form (right click it and choose Duplicate).
  3. Open the duplicated form and change the data to match your building plan (check out some of the other kgSIM_BuildingInfo messages for ideas about what kind of information you might include). After these steps is an image of the template and below that is a list of the fields along with a basic explanation of each.
  4. Once your message is configured, open your building plan, expand the Advanced section and point the ExtraPlaqueInfo property to your new message.

Toolkit Chapter 05 5 Helping the Player image01.jpg

ID: Change the ID to something to help you pair it with your building plan.
Title: The title will show up on the plot Plaque below your building plan name. This should be any basic information the player might need and show be relatively short.
Message Text: This is the information that will be displayed to the player when they select your plan from the build menu. It is broken down into 4 sections.
Heading: The first line tells the player the building name, author name, and which add-on pack it’s coming from. Replace Building Name with what you named your building, replace Author Name with your name, and replace Addon Pack Name with whatever you are going to call your Addon. If you are uncertain still, just make something as a placeholder and you can come back and change it again later.
Detailed Information: This is a more detailed version of what you included in the Title field. You can make this section as long as you like.
Benefits: This is where you would describe any modifiers your building plan would apply that are beneficial to the settlement. If you aren’t adding any special modifiers, this section can be removed.
Costs: This is where you describe any negative modifiers that would impact the settlement. If you aren’t adding any negative modifiers, this section can be removed.

Scrappable Buildings

Many of you will have noticed I released a new mod file called Sim Settlements Helper. This file was to make it possible for players to scrap everything in the mod.

On Xbox and some slower computers, conditions can arise where objects from Sim Settlements get left behind. I’m not even talking about uninstallation, I’m talking about the scripts getting backed up and things being created at unexpected times so that Sim Settlements misses them in cleanup stages. So rather than forcing the player to use console commands, allowing them to scrap the objects in workshop mode is clean easy solution already available in the game.

You can easily add this to your own stuff, here’s what you do.

  1. Start by creating a new FormList, go to the Object Window, expand Miscellanous, click on FormList and right-click in the right half of the window and click new.
  2. Give your formlist a unique ID, I tend to include the word Scrap in it. Leave your FormList open and drag the window to the side so we can add things to it.
  3. Now expand World Objects and click on one of the highest level categories (activator, container, door, etc), in the filter type in your prefix.
  4. Click on the first thing on the right (if nothing shows up, skip to the next category), then hold shift and scroll down to click on the last thing in the list, this should highlight them all. Now drag all of these into your FormList.
    • Repeat this process for all 11 of the WorldObject major categories.
  5. Now click OK to save your FormList.
  6. Next, go to the Object Window, expand Items and click on Constructible Object.
  7. Right-click on the right hand side and choose New. This will bring up the constructible object form.
    1. Enter a unique ID.
    2. Right-click in the box under Recipe Filters and select Add, find: “WorkshopRecipeFilterScrap” and add it.
    3. In the Created Object dropdown, find your FormList (you can use the filter just above it to narrow down this list.
    4. Then press OK to save the Constructible Object.
  8. You’re done!

So long as you followed the advice to create custom named duplicates of items you are spawning in your StageItemSpawns array (as tutorial 4 taught you), everything your building plans create will be scrappable.

They will also return any items to discourage anyone from using this as a cheat to generate unlimited resources.

Performance Settings Support - new in 1.1.9

In the City Manager Holotape is a section called Performance Settings. This allows players to turn off certain objects in our building plans to help with performance issues.

There are two ways you can take advantage of these.

The Removal Method: For objects that need the same classification throughout all of your building plans or that are only used in one building plan, you can simply add the ActorValue kgSIM_PlotSpawn_PerformanceClass set to one of the following numbers:

1 = Detailed model - a very complex model that could cause fps issues due to large textures or high polygon counts
2 = Detailed light - small lights that could be removed without making the building completely dark 3 = Animated Object - objects that loop through an animation like flags or machines
4 = Special Effect - smoke, fire, water, etc
5 = Radio
6 = Sound Emitter
7 = Actor type - NPCs, pets, etc.
8 = Container - Container type object holding lootable items (not currently in use) 9 = Clutter
10 = Water Plane - Water planes cause everything beneath them to be water as well, so players building plots up in the air may want to be able to turn them off.

Couple of important rules with this method:

  1. Never apply or alter this AV on the kgSIM forms that are part of Sim Settlements, or you’ll flag them for every building plan instead of just your own.
  2. Don’t apply the AV if you want your object to appear no matter what. So if you have an activator running a script, you definitely don’t want it being skipped or removed.

If you want to apply the classification to an object, but only on certain building plans, you have two options:

  1. Create a copy of your object with the appropriate AV value from the list above, then change out the version in your building plan StageItemSpawn records with your new copy.
  2. Use the iType field in your StageItemSpawn record as described in the downgrade method below.

The Downgrade Method: Use this method if you’d like to replace your object with a less intense version, for example: replace a high-poly model with a low-poly version, or a shadow light with a non-shadow light. To do this, instead of applying the ActorValue to your object, you instead use that same number in the new StageItemSpawn field called iType.

Then add your downgraded model as a new entry immediately following that one. Your downgraded model should have nothing entered in the iType field, and should have the EXACT same sSpawnName value.

If the player has that type disabled, your downgraded one will be displayed instead.