The Old Church – First Pass

The past couple of nights I have been working on another of Gnomesby’s oldest structures, the Old Church.


The Old Church has been around for as long as the Gnomers (as they like to call themselves) can remember. There is evidence that a smaller, much older structure preceded the current one, and some of the markers in the cemetery go back several ages.

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The Great Hall – First Pass

Hey, folks! I thought I’d give you the scoop on what I’ve been up to with Gnomesby lately. Mostly I’ve been researching cool stuff and downloading even cooler stuff, but tonight I finally fired up the game and did some building. I’ve decided to do what I’m calling a “first pass” of all the buildings in Gnomesby. That means exteriors only – no interiors (which is usually what takes the most time, at least for me). I have a list of all of the buildings I want in Gnomesby, but I don’t know where they’re going to be or how they’re going to fit together. So this is just a way to get a feel for how things are going to look eventually.


Tonight I worked on the heart of Gnomesby, the Great Hall. The name may change, but that’s what I’m calling it for now. It’s basically the government center of town; the aldermen and alderwomen have offices here, and there are town meetings in the Assembly Room. I may also put the Chamber of Commerce, Post Office, Historical Society, and a gift shop somewhere in here, too. Not sure how much I want to cram in there. Anyway, here’s The Great Hall:


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Ooh…The Sims 3

Have you guys seen the very cool article and magazine cover posted on

OK, so it’s not a whole lot of information yet, but there some very tantalizing bits:

  • The Sims 3 neighborhood — home and community — will be a seamless world. I take this to mean there will be no individual lots, at least when you’re in gameplay mode. So you’d be able direct your Sim to walk out of his house, down the street, and into the shop down the block, following him the whole way.
  • The gameplay will be more focused on Sims getting out and about rather than on filling up their motives bars. This is very good news for those of us who are tired of monitoring our Sims’ bladders. Hopefully they’ll be able to spend more time mingling, working, developing hobbies, making drama, all the good stuff that goes into an entertaining game. More opportunities for stories, too!

It remains to be seen how this will affect things like hood-building — will the Sim’s neighborhood be set in stone, or will we be able to edit/create/modify to our heart’s content? I certainly hope it’s the latter. And I sincerely hope they’ll allow more than one neighborhood, too. An in-game ‘hood editor is also tops on my list.

If they can make things seamless but still allow the kind of flexibility offered by The Sims 2, then this could be the ultimate sandbox game.

Oh, and The Sims 3 web site is up, too! Not much there yet, but still…eeee!

(Thanks to Snooty Sims for the links!)


Hey, folks. I spent most of the day downloading stuff, deleting stuff, creating brand new Sims, and giving my old Sims some makeovers. I decided to get rid of the Rensim skintones and go back to the Maxis defaults since I’ll be moving in some even older Sims, and they’d look weird mingling with skintoned Sims. And when I say “older”, I don’t mean elderly — I mean Sims from the past. I’ll keep the question of “who?” a mystery for a little while, but you can probably guess at least one of them.

So here are the new and improved versions of the Cliffes and the Pells. What do you think?

Adrian Cliffe, Professor of Literature and Aspiring Novelist

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I Think I Can, I Think I Can

OK, so I’ve decided to go in a slightly different direction with Gnomesby. Again. ;-) Big surprise, right? ‘Hood evolution in action!

I’ve completely redone the terrain, which took me several hours but was well worth it. It’s less scenic, perhaps, but it’s more like the slightly rolling farmland I had originally envisioned. I’m using a couple of mods which will give it a completely different look, and I’ve integrated the new railroad deco from Free Time into the hood. Woot! As soon as I saw it, I knew I HAD to work it into Gnomesby. So here’s a little sneak preview pic of my choo choo train. ;-)


(The tunnel is totally fake, by the way — I painted it in. My barn/billboard/torii gate tunnel opening didn’t look very much like an opening, I’m afraid. I need to learn how to retexture…)

So there you go. Just a little sampling of the new and improved Gnomesby.

For those of you asking about when I’m going to update or give tours and such, all I can say is…I’m not sure. I don’t mean to be mysterious, but I really don’t want to make any promises about anything. That’s what got me burned out with Mt. Geneva! So I’m trying to go at my own pace and work on whatever I feel like working on. I know that’ll drive some people nuts, but it’s what I need to do in order to keep my sanity and continue to update this site. I hope you understand, and I thank you for your patience. :-)

Lady Picture Show

Hm, another Stone Temple Pilots song. I need to rotate some new music into my playlist. ;-)

I created a new family tonight — the Pells. I had some issues, though, as you’ll see — so I only have a couple of pictures.

Here’s the dad of the family, Cody Pell. With the custom skins I’m using, it’s harder to make my Sims look middle-aged. Everyone looks so young and dewy-skinned. In an attempt to make Cody look like someone in his 40s as opposed to his 20s, I used Onah’s eye wrinkles and a “late adult” full face make-up from Mermaid Cove (which basically adds some laugh lines and slight bags under the eyes). He still looks a bit too young, but oh well. Perhaps the waters in Gnomesby have magical youth-extending properties…


I’m still working out a backstory for this family, but I have a few basics. Cody used to be in a Beach Boys-esque surf band and is now a music teacher. Or possibly a florist. I haven’t decided yet. He’s married to Maureen, who photographed the band a few times back in their heyday. She’s a bit new agey now and has started her own business (she’s going to sell potions, perfumes, and aromatherapy stuff). Maureen and Cody gave all of their kids hippie-ish names: River, Cherish, and Sunshine.

This is their middle child, Cherish. I really like how she turned out, but I think I may have crossed the line into “too realistic” territory.


Cherish is rebelling against her parents’ hippie lifestyle by gothing it up. But she has to admit the whole mantra of “make love, not war” has a certain appeal (I rolled her as a Romance Sim, heehee).

I wanted to take pics of the rest of the family, but as you can see from the snapshot below, they were having issues; River’s and Sunny’s hairdos have detached completely from their heads.


Not even a trip to the mirror could fix them. I suspect my graphics card was acting up again. Oh, and can you find the green square??

I think I may try rolling back to another graphics driver, but since I have an Nvidia card, I’m wary of bluescreen o’ death problems. It never ends… :-)

Big (Not So) Empty

OK, since I can never think of good titles for my posts, I decided to go with whatever song happened to be playing in my iTunes. In this case, it was “Big Empty” by Stone Temple Pilots. Somewhat fitting, since my hood is big and, well, pretty much empty.

Some good news: my Snag-It is working again, and I didn’t have to re-purchase it. Woot! I just had them re-send me my key via e-mail. Easy peasy. So I got all worried about it for nothing. :-p

I spent most of this afternoon tweaking my Gnomesby terrain and having a heck of a time with it. I swear I spent three hours just trying to get my bridge to look right. (It’s flat now, thanks to the Bridge Height Mod for SimCity 4. Yay!) I also smoothed some of the peaks since I didn’t really want Gnomesby to be mountainous, just hilly. Another thing I wanted was the ability to put some beach lots in my “campground” area, so I worked on that and finally had some success. And I added/rearranged some roads. Here is the result:


I added some trees and rocks for flavor but I don’t know how much of it will stick around. We shall see.

You may notice a lone lot near the center of the pic — it’s the first house in Gnomesby! Yep, once I got the terrain set up to my satisfaction, I plunged into building a home for the Cliffes. It’s a little fancy for a young college professor, but as he’s also a writer, maybe he got lucky and penned a bestseller. I mean, he does have a cat named Lucky, so anything could happen, right?


I haven’t finished decorating the inside yet, since I ran into some CC that is crashing my game. Wheee. So now I’m moving things out bit by bit in order to find the culprit. I did do a little work in the dining room, however, so here’s a preview:


So Gnomesby is finally taking off!

One more thing — I’m working on a Credits page as well. Until that’s up and running, feel free to ask me where I got stuff. I haven’t posted many pics yet, so it shouldn’t be too hard for me to track things down.

Decisions, decisions

I apologize for the quietness lately. I’ve been working on Gnomesby, but very slowly and tentatively, because I’m not sure what I want to do with it. I still have a bazillion ideas — the problem is narrowing them down into something manageable. I want Gnomesby to be interesting and original, but I also want it to make sense. That means I can’t mix Victorian dresses with ’57 Chevies and gothic hairdos. The result might be mildly intriguing, sure, but it would be a little on the ridiculous side, too. This miniature world I’m creating has to have some kind of internal logic, or it’ll turn into one huge mess.

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