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Welcome to #citiesskylines on Twitch with The Senate

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Affiliate = interactions

Earlier this week my Twitch Channel had hit Affiliate on Twitch. This means you can subscribe, get emotes, cheer for Bits and interact with the City through Channel Points and Subscriptions.

My Twitch Channel including schedule: https://www.twitch.tv/palpatine001

An introduction in Cities Skylines and my play style

I usually engage in Macro-Detailing – that is using the Zones and infrastructure to “detail” my city however, more recently I have been engaged in Micro-Detailing or going right down to site level to detail a City with props and decals to make the City look more realistic.

The game uses mods and assets to custom assets to spice up my cities and various themes are used depending on the City.

I also run a Discord which can be seen here: https://discord.gg/pX9emeN

Looking forward to seeing you there. We also play Stellaris from time to time as well.

Long (Raw) Playthrough of Neo South Auckland, Establish Bus Rapid Transit Infrastructure to Support Riccarton Centre. #CitiesSkylines

Going to try BRT’s again

After a break I am slowing getting back into streaming and creating Cities Skylines content using Neo South Auckland as my current example.

I usually upload both the RAW version for those wanting the entire run through of a city building session, as well as snippets highlighting specific elements like a piece of Urban Design or a Scene.

My latest raw run through from last week can be seen below. The focus was on building the supporting infrastructure for the Riccarton Centre I was also building alongside. This is my second ever attempt in 6 years to build Bus Rapid Transit (it is not my normal play style as I use the rail types more) given I have actual dedicated BRT assets available to do so.

So how did it map out and where will this lead next run through?

I will fetch highlights of the completion of Riccarton Centre, the set up of Riccarton South as a residential support node, further establishment of more residential for the City, and the full operation of one if not two of the Rapid Bus Transit Lines.

The photos below give a preview of this:

More soon.

Adding Scenes both Quick and Comprehensive in #CitiesSkylines

Divided Highways and Toll Plazas – all about adding the scenes

From time to time I like to add scenes to my Mixed Reality city creations in Cities Skylines. A scene is a focal point of a City you can go back to when either demonstrating something or just want somewhere to go when not busy doing the city building of infrastructure, zones, lay transit lines down, rinse and repeat.

Scenes can be as something as small as doing a divided highway when median barriers are not present or the highway splits off, or something more complex as a multi-lane motorway toll plaza.

In this post I showcase both a quickfire and more comprehensive set of scenes that adds realism to your city.

Divided Highway

From time to time a two way highway or even road ends up being grade separated. Cities Skylines when it comes to divided roads is often a bit crude, but 10-15 minutes later a quick scene can make that highway division just that little bit more realistic:

Dividing that highway

I must get node controller to straighten out those kinks in the highway merges.

Motorway Toll Plaza

Some days a Mayor, Premier, Chancellor or the boffins down in the Transport Department reconcile to themselves that motorists should pay that little bit extra for using a section of motorway or road. In Neo South Auckland there are toll plazas on the intra city motorways that feed into the City while the inter city motorways that form a ring around the City are free. However, the toll plazas in themselves are a bit plain if they were so I decided to make a scene on one half of the toll plaza (that can be easily replicated on the other half). This is what I came up with:

The signs are animated as I made Lane 8 closed to add a bit more spice to the scene. It takes around two hours to build a scene like this however, it is easy to replicate using Procedural Objects onto the other half of the motorway. Means what took two hours first time round should be all done second time around with some good old fashioned copy + paste.

Scenes can create focal points in your city and can be both something as simple as a divided highway scene, or as comprehensive as a detailed toll plaza.

I will get some ‘How to’s’ on one of my staples in all my cities: the transit hub! Because Transit Hubs make the City go round – or rather not as much stuck in traffic!

Take 2 in doing a Mixed Reality Creation of South Auckland. Days 1 and 2

Previous version needed for IRL reasons so working on new map

After my previous Mixed Reality of South Auckland had to be put to one side for IRL reasons (yes as a Spatial Planner I use Cities Skylines as a communication device for work) I started a new map with new objectives or gameplay.

Below are the two full format versions of Neo South Auckland. I will run highlights on specific scenes like details, toll plazas, traffic or urban hierarchies in highlight videos and blog posts.

New City New Map (previous City needed for IRL work reasons). Still Mixed Reality – Still South Auckland

New Map, New City, New City MK2

Day 2 New City New Map (previous City needed for IRL work reasons). Still Mixed Reality – Still South Auckland

Toll Plaza? Why not

I will be slowing down my game play quite a bit with this City with focus on scenes and details like the above toll plaza as we progress. Yes my old fashioned macro detailing will still be there as we do urban development and infrastructure but if I see a scene like a toll plaza we can do or even ramp signals I will drop down and do a walk through on them.

This is all part of my Mixed Reality style of play where I blend virtual and real world concepts into the game and cities.

Twitch channel

Any questions feel free to leave them in the comments.

Road and Transport Hierarchy: Planning, Building and Optimisation #CitiesSkylines #MixedReality

Getting the transport system right – both vanilla and modded

In this longer highlight I go through the basic notions of Road Hierarchy and its planning, building and optimisation. Note: the City is still in very early stages so transit and cycling infrastructure will be in its infancy (localised) until the City further establishes.

Hierarchies, Planning, Building and Optimisation.

I do cover both Vanilla and Modded game play styles.

A Pak in Save

Building and Optimising Interchanges in #CitiesSkylines​ (non Vanilla)

Short highlight on getting best bang for buck out of interchanges

I run through how to build and optimise an interchange over a motorway. The interchange used was the YumblTV interchange available on the Cities Skylines Steam Workshop.

Optimising the interchange

If you are wondering about transit and cycling infrastructure, this will get placed later on once the zones are operational.

That a Pak n Save?

Day 2 Recreating South Auckland (Mixed Reality) in #CitiesSkylines​ (all about the Infrastructure)

Settling the infrastructure down, going through what Road Hierarchies mean (full play through)

In Day 2 of recreating South Auckland as part of a Mixed Reality build in Cities skylines I go through the motions of laying down the core transport infrastructure. This is a full run through, I will have separate posts covering the highlights of Road Hierarchies, and Transport Optimisations.

So why Road Hierarchies?

Would you put residential on a six lane arterial road, or send trucks and buses down a tiny road?

Yeah.

Next up: Day 3 – preparing the zones and establishing the city

All falling into place

New Map, New City, Day 1: Building South Auckland in #CitiesSkylines #MixedReality

Using Mixed Reality to build South Auckland as it might have been

After giving my second ever only Winter map a go (Antarctica City) I went back over to my stock standard Temperate Maps reopening Vanilla Coast to have another crack it (the first had to stop as the Industries DLC had come out when the city was in its end phases).

With that I introduce South Auckland, a Mixed Reality build named after my IRL home sub-region here in Auckland, New Zealand. If you are wondering what Mixed Reality is the term means the blending of Virtual and Real World concepts for the purpose of education, entertainment or showcase. Given I stream Cities Skylines on Twitch the Mixed Reality version is more around education as I go through the real life motions of building a City in its various stages of its life on a virtual platform.

Day 1 of South Auckland, a Mixed Reality creation named after my home sub region:

Day 1: Outlining the Methodology of founding a City

Day 1 looks at the methodology I use in laying the foundations of the City. Basically I am doing the equivalent of the real life Auckland (Spatial) Plan in working out how things will be shaped followed by laying down key transport routes the spatial form be influenced by.

Note: This is the full play through of this particular segment of Cities Skylines. From time to time I will publish Highlights as separate blog posts.

Next up: Day 2 and looking at Hierarchies

Day 1 in creating a city named after my home Sub Region – South Auckland

From a Cims Point of View: We Go First Person Mode in Antarctica City #CitiesSkylines

From God View to the View of the Cim

One thing not often done, or at least recorded in Screenshots and video is what the City is like from Cim or ground level perspective in the game. For me I love dropping down to First Person Mode to see what is going on a Cim level and see all the interactions in place – or rather traffic fouling up as I forgot to do something in that area.

Speaking of which First Person mode whether it be the free camera or riding transit, it is great for investigating where problems in the City might show up and getting it fixed as it wont always show up in birds-eye or God view. First person mode also makes for great pictures or video of your City so here is one of Antarctica City after I recently expanded the Heavy Rail.

A first person view of Antarctica City
Antarctica City from Papakura and Pacifica. To the left is the City Centre, to the right is the Downtown.

For those wondering why all the mid-rise? It is because I use the Euro Theme by default meaning I get the Euro based buildings that cap out at eight storeys where as the International theme has unlimited height. Ironically though (or not) the Euro theme buildings and designs allow for higher density (in terms of population per set area) compared to all but the largest of super-talls in the International theme.

I have also done an Industry 101-301 series on Twitch. I will place these into YouTube at the conclusion of the series.

Twitch: Palpatine001

Tactical Urbanism, Traffic/Transit Checks/Fixes in #CitiesSkylines (Moderate-Advanced Modded Playthrough)

Fine tuning the city to avoid massive rebuilds and expensive motorways

Once you have settled into the basic mechanics of Cities Skylines with a functioning transport system, the zones nicely laid out and the civic infrastructure all working does the fun really begin.

Fun what fun?

As the city gets larger it gets more complex as an organism especially if playing modded as I do. This means regular check ups across the City to make sure the transport and transit systems are working as optimally as they should. The good news is that most fixes you come upon are not major and can be done very quickly and cheaply. That said from time to time a major overhaul might be needed but that is for another day. The point being that six lane roads and motorways are not and should not be the go to fix – PUBLIC AUTHORITIES TAKE NOTE.

In this post I go through some medium and advanced play throughs in using some extended tools to help fine tune your City as well as giving it more realism. Note: I use Real Time Mod which simulates the full day/night cycle and includes the rush hours, shopping, events, and shift work effects upon a City. More HERE.

Standardised Cargo Terminals that also work for Transit Hubs

How to do a standardised, universal but effective cargo terminal that also works for bus or transit terminals. No mods need to be used so can work for Vanilla or Modded. But the purpose is to get interchanging traffic doing their business while not interfering with thoroughfare traffic.

Using Traffic Flow Tool, TMPE, and basic fixes to get traffic going

Traffic sucks most days, and your transit gets stuck from time to time. Using TMPE, and Traffic Flow data we do basic fixes (so no grand 8 lane roads and 6 lane highways) to get things moving again.

Tactical Urbanism 102 in Antarctic City – the Downtown 

How to do some more advanced but still small tactical urbanism in this time the Downtown of your City. This would be used until a more permanent solution is built. The tactical urbanism is on a 4-way, one way and stops opposing traffic crashing.

Tactical Urbanism 103 using one way streets in a leisure district

Doing more basic Tactical Urbanism, this time in the Leisure District. Find It, Procedural Objects, Move It, Line Marking Tool, Traffic Manager Presidents Edition mods were used.

Using TMPE, Line Marking Tool, and Decals on Roads (Advanced Play Through) 

Using TMPE, Line Marking Tool and Decals to give more realism at intersections. Note: Real Time Mod is used so this is more Advanced game play with Cities Skylines.

Using Transport Lines Manager to check up on Transit

At about every 15,000 of new population one should check their transit. I do so using Transport Lines Manager mod.

Of course as the City continues to grow and evolve more checks and tweaks are done, especially as more transit lines are added and old ones might need replacing.

I can be found on Twitch doing Cities Skylines play throughs: https://www.twitch.tv/palpatine001

Undertaking Tactical Urbanism in #CitiesSkylines

Some quickfire ways to help the city move

As a Spatial Planning and Urban Geographer in real life the concepts I practice there can make its way into Cities Skylines and vice versa. For more on tactical urban see this post over at my main blog: Tactical Urbanism Reaches South Auckland!

So can Tactical Urban be done in Cities Skylines? Yes it can. Below is a high level overview of doing Tactical Urbanism in converting a painted cycle lane to a separated cycleway on a main thoroughfare route:

Part 1 is the high level overview and doing the most basic form of tactical urbanism. As this particular City grows and evolves I will do further videos on Tactical Urbanism with some being more complex than others. Other Spatial Planning and Urban Design concepts will be outlined as well.

Hopefully these videos can give some inspiration to provide some extra realism in your cities based on real world concepts today.

Outlining the infrastructure in the new City
Trust me I have done more than just four roads and a roundabout