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Buildings: With Or Without Base?

Discussion in 'General Forum' started by Monty, Oct 13, 2014.

  1. I prefer building with bases.

    11 vote(s)
  2. I prefer buildings without bases.

    5 vote(s)
  3. Uhm, what?

    1 vote(s)
  1. Monty

    Monty Governor

    Aug 20, 2014
    Likes Received:
    Whenever I'm modding a building a came to the same question: Should I add a base or not? By "base" I mean the ground around the building not the collision box.

    Default buildings have square or rectangular bases and collisions boxes are also limited to those shapes. Even though models can include non rectangular bases or no collision tags you still have that piece of ground attached to the building and this has some pros and cons:

    Pros of bases:
    Easy placement
    , buildings with collision box and rectangular bases will flat the land when placed. No need of previous terraforming.
    Aesthetics. Bases make the building look better improving the overall look of it. Also the nightlighs will look more realistic when the light illuminates the ground around the building.

    Cons of bases:
    Aesthetics. Buildings with bases are harder to blend with your city's surroundings, plazas won't match the building's ground. If you plop the same building several times, the repetition at street level is more noticeable.
    Restricted placement. Though they are easier to place, the base limits the placement posibilities.

    Pros of no bases:
    Buildings without base allows you to place them more freely, you can place roads that follow the contour of the building's footprint and the possibility of creating customized bases using plazas, trees and other objects.
    Non restricted placement. Without a base the building has more potential when it comes to placement, you can place them close to eachother, close or away from the roads.
    Triangle count: Bases add triangles to the models and take space from texture bitmaps which can be used to add more detail to the building itself.

    Cons of no bases:
    Harder placement. Buildings without a base need flat terrain, which may need some extra terraforming work. If the ground is not flat, parts of the building may look like floating in the air.
    Aesthetics. Nightlights will not look as realistic at ground level because the lights will not illuminate the ground around the building.
    Peter912 likes this.
  2. Peter912

    Peter912 Elite

    Aug 22, 2014
    Likes Received:
    I honestly prefer bases for regular (T1, T2) buildings and no bases for T3 and exeptional ones ;)
  3. kipate

    kipate Governor

    Aug 23, 2014
    Likes Received:
    I have to say, and I already told you, that I had difficulties with placing
    e.g. your fountain such that the ground aligned perfectly with the
    furniture elements (stone seats) of the fountain.

    Maybe it was better to have no base for mods with not that
    much furniture elements on the ground level (see your Trump Hotel)
    and have a base for mods with much furniture...
  4. Dreian

    Dreian Moderator
    Staff Member

    Aug 24, 2014
    Likes Received:
    i voted for base buildings... but i think without base is good for landmarks or special buildings
  5. Mr.X²

    Mr.X² Moderator

    Aug 23, 2014
    Likes Received:
    hmm... to be honest: both :p
    w2w-buildings with base of course^^
    squared buildings... hmm... i guess with base
    buildings with other shapes without
  6. snick

    snick Moderator
    Staff Member

    Aug 22, 2014
    Likes Received:
    I think your Trump International Hotel mod is a good illustration of a situation where not having a base would be better.

    Buildings that have irregular shapes, such as Trump, are probably better off without bases since they will be a hassle to fit naturally into a road network if they have a large base/collision box that extends away from the building.

    There's one other consideration I think might be good to take into account - snapping to roads. Buildings with no collisions can only be rotated in 8 directions - that is usually fine, but sometimes you end up with problems.

    So in most cases I think a base is preferable.
  7. gbojanic

    gbojanic Governor

    Aug 22, 2014
    Likes Received:
    It depends on what you are creating.
    Things like residential buildings (or any other that will be plopped numerous times) should have a base. It is much easier to work with them that way. Without a base it would take forever just to make a city block, if you want it to look nice. You would have to place the buildings and do the surrounding area manually... Unless they are W2W, of course.

    If you are making something like a skyscraper or anything that will be used once or just a few times in a city, then it can go both ways. If you need more space in the texture map (and there's never enough) just do it without a base... It's not a problem to do the surroundings manually a few times.

    Besides, it's not a problem to add a limitless version (small CB) which will give you some more freedom with placing them. The problem with that is that the bases of the buildings will overlap and give some weird results when viewed from close up. That should be considered before making a building that will have a normal and small CB version.

    The illumination part on the base of the building is priceless. It really makes it look more realistic.

    So in most cases building with a base is preferable.
  8. luis diogo

    luis diogo Elite

    Aug 26, 2014
    Likes Received:
    I agree that it depends on the kind of building. For example, your church from Fiorenze (sorry don't recall the name) happens to work really great with some ped paths around and with nicko celtic plaza around.
    Landmarks and decorations might benefict from the nobase option.

    But more regular and linear buildings i guess they take advantage from having a base.

    Ideally, maybe some buildings could be upgradable for both versions, but i don't know if that's possible or too much work.

    All in all, i think it comes to a point were the modder itself will have to decide which way to go, having in mind he's feelings about the buildings usabillity.

    Anyway, i'm voting yes to base, but underlining that landmarks such as churches and decorations could go for the no base system.

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