Author Topic: Skill Limiting  (Read 14352 times)

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Offline Dark_Author

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Skill Limiting
« on: March 16, 2011, 11:05:37 AM »
First off, I know that there are already some skill limited mods available, but they aren't quite what I'm after.  What I want is to be able to set, for each sim, exactly how high a given skill can get. 

For example, if in the Boomtown challenge (or just regular playing) I decide that Sim A is an underacheiver, but very talented mechanically, I would go to an object, click on the sims name that I am after for that lot, and then click the skills I want to block.  For Sim A, I would select level 10 allowed for mechanically, but block him at level 3 or 4 in all other skills.  No matter how much he cooks or studies cooking, he won't ever gain another skill point in cooking.

This is same idea could be used to to limit the skill level allowed for certain ages by specific sim.  Instead of limiting all toddlers to three skill points, for example, I could set how high they could skill based on their personality and what I think is right for the age.  It would also be easier to keep sims stuck at a certain career level, or doom them too a life of mediocrity..you get the idea.  Sims that you never set a limit for with the object would have no skill limits, obviously.  This is one when you want it, for who you want it, and what skills you want it for.


So, I figured I'd post this and see if other people might like the idea, and maybe see if BO or TJ or AH or another one of our excellent modders might be willing to take it on. :cheese:

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Offline Liquid Vamp

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2011, 12:51:33 PM »
That sounds interesting! I also think it would be helpful to the Boomtown challenge. :thumb:
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Offline BoilingOil

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #2 on: March 16, 2011, 01:55:33 PM »
Oooh, that sounds interesting! I'm not sure if it can be done, though, but that might just be my limited experience speaking.

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Offline Dark_Author

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #3 on: March 16, 2011, 02:46:44 PM »
BO, since AH has those skill limiting mods for toddlers, the same general idea should be able to be used with an object to create this effect, right?  Nice to hear that you're interested in it, though!  I hope you'll give it a try. :cheese:

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Offline BoilingOil

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #4 on: March 16, 2011, 03:49:51 PM »
Sure Klarisa, it's POSSIBLE, but I've checked out AH's site, and what did I find?

AH achieved limited skills by editing each skilling object that toddlers or children could use. So that would now mean we would have to edit objects that are used by teens, adults and elders as well. And that includes: all fitness devices, all kitchen appliances, all TVs, computers, stereos, chess tables, painting easels, and name just a few dozen more... Everything that can be cleaned, broken, repaired, tinkered with, or used in any other fashion for skilling purposes, now needs to be edited.

We would want a custom object with which we can control the settings for each sim. TJ's ACR controller is proof that such a thing can be done, but how long did TJ take to make it the way it is now?
And how many others have done something like that, controlling so many tokens?
And then ALL the skilling objects would need to be edited to read the data from those tokens, and use that data to limit each sim according to the settings made for that sim. And that still ONLY takes care of Maxis objects... but what about all those hundreds of custom objects out there?

Suddenly sounds a lot less viable, doesn't it? Certainly not something I would dream of ever completing...
« Last Edit: March 16, 2011, 03:52:13 PM by BoilingOil »

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Offline arathea

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #5 on: March 16, 2011, 03:53:57 PM »
How about a token that checks the settings each time a sim gets a new skill point and, if the limit is exceeded, sets it back to the highest allowed level? Would that be possible?
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Offline Dark_Author

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #6 on: March 16, 2011, 03:55:16 PM »
Or maybe something that sets the sim to get the "maximized skill" memory at a lower level, which might make the game think that sim had already maxed it?

BO, please don't call me "Klarisa"...lol  The only time ANYONE calls me that is when I've ticked them off.  Klaire or DA is fine. :cheese:  When I was a kid there was a show called "Clarissa Explains It All" on Nickoldeon...I got made fun of a lot because of it and now I hate my name. lol
« Last Edit: March 16, 2011, 03:56:57 PM by dark_author »

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Offline BoilingOil

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #7 on: March 16, 2011, 04:15:19 PM »
Oops, sorry Klaire. My bad. :blush: I won't make that mistake again!

Maybe forcing the Maximized Skill memory at the right time would be the easiest solution, IF there's a central routine somewhere that handles ALL skill-gains/losses. That routine could then be altered to include pushing the memory.
I can foresee one issue, though... Once a sim hits all their limits, one would have "Maxed All Skills". The "Max all skills" want and the "Max 7 Skills" LTW should either be disabled or edited as well.

@arathea: that could be an alternative. Sims would continue to show the skilling progress meter over their heads, even when they've hit their personal skill limit, but maybe that's something one could live with.

Either way, the controller object a la ACR-controller would still need to be fashioned... If you guys know a way of coercing TJ into doing this, you might stand a chance. I'm afraid it's still way out of my ball park.

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Offline Dark_Author

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #8 on: March 16, 2011, 04:29:05 PM »
Hmm....do you think TJ would do it?

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Offline AncientHighway

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #9 on: March 16, 2011, 04:55:09 PM »
I created the mod to limit toddlers and children skill gaining because I got tired of a child aging to teen with all the high skill levels.  I still haven't located all the possible skill gain items for the youngsters, but I did take care of most of the autonomous ones.  With one week as a teen, chasing skill based scholarships becomes much more difficult and two almost impossible.

For adults though, I've taken the hands off approach to skill gaining.  I make sure there are autonomous objects available, and then let the game decide about usage or not.  I don't direct skill gains unless a want pops up for a skill gain or for a promotion that requires a skill gain..  Easels in some houses are frequently used, and in other houses sit around gathering dust.  Elders have passed with their highest skill being 7.  Self control in controlling the sims is more effective than adding more mods and the potential conflicts.

That being said tokens would be the way to go and it would be a wait as it is developed, tested, revised, tested, scrapped and start over, tested.....  btw, I don't foresee myself attempting this.

Offline BoilingOil

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #10 on: March 16, 2011, 05:32:52 PM »
What HE said! :D *points up to AH's post*

@DA: who would know what TJ will do, except for TJ himself? We'll just have to wait for him to see this and give us his thoughts.

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Offline Dark_Author

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #11 on: March 16, 2011, 05:35:07 PM »
I gave him a write with a link to the thread (hopefully we're allowed to do that...Im not sure now I think about it).  Hopefully he'll check it out.

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Offline Cyjon

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #12 on: March 16, 2011, 06:37:14 PM »
All skill increases are ultimately controlled by the Skill Tracker (group 7FB9261E) regardless of the source of the skill. I used the BHAV "Calculate Ticks in Temp 0" to double the ticks needed for servos, cutting their skill gain rate in half.  Looking at it now, I'd say the key is probably "Function - Main - Gain Loop" or maybe even "Function - Main". Have it look for a token on the sim which limits skill gain, and if the skill is past that level than just do nothing. The skill bar will still appear but it will never fill.

Other than that you just need to create the token, and an object to assign and modify the token for the selected sim.

Offline Dark_Author

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #13 on: March 16, 2011, 06:58:43 PM »
Thanks, Cyjon!  I'm sure that information will be helpful! :cheese:

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Offline Katya

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #14 on: March 17, 2011, 03:43:10 AM »
 :nothing:

Count me in as another who'd be interested if this were to be developed.
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Offline BoilingOil

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #15 on: March 17, 2011, 05:42:52 AM »
All skill increases are ultimately controlled by the Skill Tracker (group 7FB9261E) regardless of the source of the skill. I used the BHAV "Calculate Ticks in Temp 0" to double the ticks needed for servos, cutting their skill gain rate in half.  Looking at it now, I'd say the key is probably "Function - Main - Gain Loop" or maybe even "Function - Main". Have it look for a token on the sim which limits skill gain, and if the skill is past that level than just do nothing. The skill bar will still appear but it will never fill.

Other than that you just need to create the token, and an object to assign and modify the token for the selected sim.

DANG! You're absolutely right, Cyjon! I now remember I've been there a while ago (Skill Tracker, I mean).
Fixing the Skill Tracker would probably work for ALL skilling options and for ALL ages, rendering AH's toddler/child skill-limiters obsolete. It would also mean no bogus "Maxed Skill" memories or reclaiming excess levels will be required.

Now the controller to make/edit the tokens would be the biggest job! I'd still think that's most likely something TJ would do better than me, but at least it doesn't sound all that impossible any more.

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Offline arathea

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #16 on: March 17, 2011, 06:03:30 AM »
It just occurred to me, do the skill points from chance cards (job and vacation trips) and eggplant juice need separate adjustment or are they covered with the skill tracker, too?
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Offline BoilingOil

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #17 on: March 17, 2011, 06:25:08 AM »
They would most likely be independent of the Skill Tracker, dear.

If I'm not mistaken, Skill Tracker works like this: when you start something that includes skilling, a Skill Tracker token (bound to that sim and their current activity) is created and placed on the lot. A special group of BHAVs runs while that token exists to update a sim's progress. Once the sim stops the activity, a final update from the token is made, and then the token is destroyed.

Chance Cards come up while the sim is away from home, and most certainly NOT skilling. So the effects from Chance Cards can NOT be handled through any Skill Tracker.

ETA: I think if I find the time (I still have a lot of projects under construction, after all), I may look into this thing after all. Maybe a specialized controller won't even be required, if the Skill Limiting menu were grafted into the Bookcase globals. That way, in any household where a bookcase (ANY bookcase) is available, one could click the bookcase to set up the limits for any sim present, or at least for all residents of the lot.
« Last Edit: March 17, 2011, 07:04:29 AM by BoilingOil »

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Offline zephyrzodiac

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #18 on: March 17, 2011, 11:02:35 AM »
You know, I can't see a problem with Chance Cards giving out a skill point a sim with limitations might get - just a bit of good luck, which could, if you want, easily be cancelled out but removing it again.  (Or if it leads to a promotion you didn't want them to have, then some people do get promoted beyond their ability, don't they?)
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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #19 on: March 17, 2011, 01:48:11 PM »
ETA: I think if I find the time (I still have a lot of projects under construction, after all), I may look into this thing after all.

YAY!!!

ZZ, I agree about the chance cards.  I think it would actually be kind of neat if it gave a sim a skill beyond their limits or promoted them beyond their ability...it would be a bit more realistic that way.

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Offline zephyrzodiac

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #20 on: March 17, 2011, 02:21:00 PM »
And the next chance card might see them demoted again! :evilgrin:
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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #21 on: March 17, 2011, 03:01:23 PM »
I like it.  :cheese:

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Offline twojeffs

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #22 on: March 17, 2011, 09:58:09 PM »
I thought of doing this before but never got around to it. Cyjon's right on, you'd just need to mod the skill tracker to read a custom token on the sim that stores the maximums. Not a hugely complicated mod, but I might be up for a small challenge.
« Last Edit: July 27, 2012, 02:14:15 AM by zephyrzodiac »
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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #23 on: March 17, 2011, 11:28:15 PM »
That would be lovely, TJ. I've already succeeded in convincing myself that I would be able to do this, but I'm sure you'd do much faster and better. So if you'd get me off the hook... please don't let me stop you.

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #24 on: March 18, 2011, 12:30:22 PM »
Go, TJ! Go, TJ! -ahem-  TJ, it would be really, really, monumentally awesome if you decide to take this on. :cheese:

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Offline reggikko

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #25 on: March 19, 2011, 12:34:10 PM »
I would totally LOVE something like this.

Offline FisherX

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #26 on: March 19, 2011, 01:13:21 PM »
...coming out of hiding.... Please TJ - Pretty please with a cherry on top  :cheese:

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #27 on: March 19, 2011, 02:14:42 PM »
 :bow: We'd be so honoured, TJ!
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Offline aelflaed

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #28 on: March 20, 2011, 11:58:58 PM »
Coming out of lurk for a moment...I keep running into trouble randomising skills using TJ's Blender. I find it often assigns too many skillpoints, and I have to re-roll many times until the sim gets a vaguely believable amount of skills.

I really like the random feature, because it isn't down to me to control each point exactly. I know there is an option to add each skill point individually, but there is no way to remove skill points once given. I'd often like to take just one or two points away from the random ones assigned, rather than rolling a completely new set.

If TJ (or anyone else) is going to make a new skill-adjusting mod, I'd like to suggest making it possible to both add and subtract individual skill points.

(If I've somehow missed the 'subtract skills' option on the Blender, sorry for bothering you!)  :yikes:

Offline AncientHighway

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #29 on: March 21, 2011, 08:33:10 AM »
Enable testing cheats, click on the skill and drag it to where you want it.

Offline zephyrzodiac

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #30 on: March 21, 2011, 08:50:38 AM »
I like the idea of harder skills, skill limiting, etc., but I've never felt the need to give sims skill points they haven't earned.  The only time I remove skill points is from moved-in townies, and then I tend to do the whole bunch of them in SimPE and put them all at the bottom of the career ladder.  I've never found, once you do that, the game changes anything, so if I'm starting up a new hood, it's one of the first things I do.  I don't think the game will change the skill points of a townie, even if you use them as employees in a business, although they will still gain the business-related skills.
« Last Edit: March 21, 2011, 08:53:04 AM by zephyrzodiac »
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Offline kacidama

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #31 on: March 21, 2011, 05:13:50 PM »
I give newly created adults random skills as I think they would have accumulated certain skills up till adulthood and I also give created kids and teens the basic skills my toddlers earn before they grow up.  I deduct skills from created teens so they still have something to work towards so skill limiting would help in certain scenarios

Offline Firelira78

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #32 on: March 22, 2011, 08:17:57 PM »
Can a similar thing be done regarding hobby enthusiasm? I mean an ability to block a sim's gaining enthusiasm for certain hobbies beyond a certain level.

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #33 on: March 22, 2011, 09:07:09 PM »
I'm guessing there might be a construction that handles enthousiasm gain, similar to what the Skill Tracker does for skills. IF my suspicion is correct, then it could certainly be manipulated in a similar manner as well. ;)

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #34 on: March 22, 2011, 10:36:35 PM »
Tuna's Enthusiasm mods prevent all but the OTH being maximised, so it's really, I suppose, a matter of changing something to lower the level from 9 to wherever you want it to be.
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Offline Firelira78

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #35 on: March 23, 2011, 06:29:47 AM »
I'm guessing there might be a construction that handles enthousiasm gain, similar to what the Skill Tracker does for skills. IF my suspicion is correct, then it could certainly be manipulated in a similar manner as well. ;)

Such a mod will really be a dream come true.  :smile:


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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #36 on: March 25, 2011, 09:48:20 PM »
So, errr...TJ, do you think you might take this on, then? :cheese:

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Offline Cyjon

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #37 on: March 26, 2011, 09:56:08 PM »
Can a similar thing be done regarding hobby enthusiasm? I mean an ability to block a sim's gaining enthusiasm for certain hobbies beyond a certain level.

This isn't exactly what you were looking for, but I just put up Hobby Age Limits...which I can't post a link to. It limits enthusiasm by age band, and was created mainly to fix the annoyance of having to use the batbox to fix teens who didn't get hobby invites because they got enthusiasm 5+ as a child or toddler.

If someone wanted to create a customized enthusiasm limiter like the skill limiter talked about in this thread, the Enthusiasm Tracker is 7F77904A and it looks like all changes funnel through "Sub - Increment Enthusiasm Level".

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #38 on: March 27, 2011, 01:31:21 AM »
So that would confirm my suspicion: there's an enthousiasm tracker, just like for skills. ;)

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Offline twojeffs

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #39 on: April 03, 2011, 09:26:14 AM »
SKILL LIMITER TEST VERSION ATTACHED:

This zip file contains a plugin mod and a new version of the Blender (where I added the option menus). Both are required for the mod to work.

All seems to work well but want to have a few of you beat on it a bit before formally posting it.

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Offline arathea

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #40 on: April 03, 2011, 11:09:22 AM »
First test (vanilla exept for this mod), my sim with cooking limited to level 2 got her third skill point from studying a cook book.
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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #41 on: April 03, 2011, 11:31:40 AM »
I'll check it out in a hacked game - I just can't face another round of about 60 resets due to removing my hacks folder.....

Update:  checked with HCDU and found no conflicts with the plug-in.  Mod is installed in the TwoJeffs folder.

Some problems, none of my new family managed to gain a single skill point on their first day, although the one with Cuisine enthusiasm made at least three meals and studied cooking virtually all the rest of the time.  I had another family member who went and warmed up at the dance bar, and despite being there for an hour or more, his progress bar was still at the bottom, and I then had him skillinate dancing, and the bar still didn't move at all.  One of the teens was told to hobbinate arts and crafts, and gained nothing despite nearly completing the draft of the painting... and went to bed with the progress bar, still at zero, remaining over her head.

When I checked with the blender, the 10 was greyed out for all the sims I looked at, for whatever skill I looked at, apart from one who is on mechanical 3 because that was the one I chose to check that the option itself was working.  I haven't had time yet to see what happens if I have that sim study mechanical....
« Last Edit: April 03, 2011, 01:49:27 PM by zephyrzodiac »
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Offline AncientHighway

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #42 on: April 03, 2011, 01:49:29 PM »
That's why many people use test neighborhoods.  The hacks can be moved out, bang away on testing, then put the hacks back in before playing your main hood.

One thing I've noticed with my toddler skill limiting mods is that it is possible to exceed the limit I've placed on skill levels if the toddler or child is low enough to gain that max limit, but then continues to use the item.  So a toddler could be at 1.97 logic, start playing with the blocks, gaining the skill, then continue playing with them and reach 3.something.  Maybe even 4 if the parents are really neglectful  lol.  The skill routine needs to be interrupted to prevent skilling from exceeding the mandated limits.  I decided that some toddlers are exceptional and can do better than others.

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #43 on: April 03, 2011, 01:56:56 PM »
However, a vanilla test that works is no help if any mod which one has in one's game on a regular basis causes the mod not to work.  I'm well aware that using a test game is one way of testing a mod, and indeed I've frequently done so, but I also have things I want to do in my hood and there are only so many hours in the day.... So, if the plug-in works in a test game with AL installed, maybe there is something in my game that is preventing it from working, or maybe it is not having AL that is the problem.  I'll maybe try it in a test hood tomorrow just to be sure that it isn't not having AL that is the problem.

BTW, AH, I found that Chaavik's version of the activity table allowed toddlers to gain more creativity.... don't use the default, so I don't know if that has the same effect... also, singing the nursery rhyme seems to make them exceed the charisma limit fairly quickly.
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Offline arathea

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #44 on: April 03, 2011, 02:28:05 PM »
What AH said, when I cancel the action and start it again, there 's no more skill gain but completed skill points will stay. I had no problems with skilling objects so far (tried the ballet bar too) and will now slowly add some hacks.
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Offline zephyrzodiac

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #45 on: April 03, 2011, 03:33:17 PM »
Well, I decided to load my vanilla Build game and played a new sim in a previously unplayed Desiderata.  I set various levels of different skills and left the body skill points level at the default 10.  My sim made numerous bowls of cereal and lunchmeat sandwiches, including 6 group meals of cereal, and no skill gain whatsoever.  She worked out on the punch bag (thanks to the blender) did loads of cleaning, and did at least 6 crosswords, and again no skill gain.  The progress bar was over her head the whole time, no matter what she was doing, and the level showed at minimum (and this is Autumn).... so I tried putting the blender in her inventory, but it made no difference.  I then deleted the blender altogether, and had her punch the punch bag until she was exhausted, and stinky, and still nothing.... I felt really sorry for this sim, so I think I might remove that Desiderata and put it in my game so I can play her and satisfy her want to get just one measly little skill point!

Obviously, it's not a hack conflict, it's purely and simply that it won't work with FT and no AL.
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Offline arathea

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #46 on: April 03, 2011, 03:46:58 PM »
I had no conflicts so far. It works with my slower skills mod, XPTL297's mod to make the ballet bar drop comfort instead of energy and Squinge's mod to add fitness gain for jumping rope. It even works with Monique's computer (study skills/novel/article).

ETA: I've tried it in an AnyGame with all EPs up to FT and got the same result as ZZ. Error log attached.
« Last Edit: April 03, 2011, 04:10:54 PM by arathea »
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Offline zephyrzodiac

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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #47 on: April 03, 2011, 05:10:00 PM »
Glad to know it wasn't just my game.  The good news is, I moved the Desiderata game into my main game and played her lot again with the old blender back in place, and nothing was permanently borked.  By Sunday of the first week she had reached level 7 in fitness and was no longer displaying a progress bar while sitting on the loo! :biglaugh:
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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #48 on: April 03, 2011, 09:31:18 PM »
Crap. I lied. The plugin requires AL or MG.
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Re: Skill Limiting
« Reply #49 on: April 04, 2011, 01:32:52 AM »
 :giggle:
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