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Thinking about changing seasons and don’t want to change your house?

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2 replies to this topic

#1
EvilPixieWorks

EvilPixieWorks

    Owner: Red & Purple Emp.

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Hello all! I’m fairly new to this site, but I’m an old ace at decorating and customizing houses. I hope to post many new items in this area and will welcome any questions asked. Please feel free to PM me if you wish.

For those of you who don’t know me... I own the Red & Purple Mini Mall and surrounding town (Red & Purple Pixies of the Yew Wood) on the Atlantic shard. I have designed countless houses for friends around the Atlantic shard and always try and grab a spot on new test shards to try out new ideas. I honestly think the customizing house system was one of the best ideas or changes to UO in all history. Every addition welcomed, from plants to decorative deeded items. I also think it's a real shame that some people don’t even dare to take advantage of this system and so, I hope, try to share encouragement to experiment with this aspect of our game. Some little tricks are way more simple then you think... some are horribly complex. Thus, I always felt it wonderful we have a section on these kinds of community boards to exchange ideas.

Building a custom house can sometimes take an hour... or days to accomplish. Days worth of effort can go into mere decoration. One thing I honestly really hate about newer players, is the lack of desire to explore their own shards. Before the lag of Luna and you wanted to find vendor goods, you either had runes dropped around the banks, moongates, and dungeon entrances... or you explored. I had worked out 7 different zones to run, looking for vendors. Before custom houses, I still popped in public houses and had a look around. You barely see people doing this anymore. If the staff understood it or not, the evil of Luna made people lazy, in my book. Thankfully we still have house runes, now house runes, house to house teleporters at public hubs as well as the town hubs Mesanna is working on... and those very town banners that officially mark player towns. Please... anyone who doesn’t, take a day and explore! You wont be sorry. Some people will just amaze you. And PLEASE don’t rip off ideas! :-) hehe. It's not nice.

With that said... I’d like to put on the block one idea for general discussion, regarding seasonal decoration... OR even more connected to decorating contests:

I honestly don’t think many people take into consideration that some houses are not easily changed. Public establishments like vendor malls, guild halls, and runebook libraries have a clear function. This function is what they are all about. For a public vendor mall, for example, every rented vendor would have to be taken down and replaced by each owner... every single time construction mode is accessed. Some vendor malls, mostly the ones you have to go into rather then shop from the outside, owners enjoy doing a seasonal change to add a little interest. Personally, I didn’t do this until I found a little mall who’s vendors were all owned by the house owner, who only changed décor by decoration, not by construction. My own mall, set with a front and roof-top garden, was more constant. It then evolved to be seasonal as well. Vendors could not be disturbed. I also found, with decoration contests, any entry of these same kinds of public buildings was ignored. Why? Is it fair to be disregarded because your house is publicly functional? I don’t think so. If anything, I think a smart contest would have 2 categories. Those who full out build from the ground up... and those who actually keep the house the same and only change the items locked down.

For example... winter/snow/Christmas. Your common theme, your house sits in a woodland area. Your house matches the flora of the surrounding area. The building itself, fits that very environment... and has a clear function, you love it as is, if it's publicly functional or not. You do not need to go into construction mode! Not since we got the wonderful world of white plants OR white cloth Gaza mats. :-) Instant snow! Ladders... will help raise items without making temporary walkways. Changing normal green hedges to white hedges... as well as winterizing your garden. Every year, for the most part, we get new gear to use in holiday décor. The limit is really within your own imagination... and bank-box.

This is not just true with winter and Christmas, but personally my mall has a list of themes to fit the year. Winter, after Christmas, plants are brown and dead colored. Valentines or “Candy Day” (as I call it) has a disgusting red and pink theme. Spring, flowers are far more then summer. Summer has it's original design for the mall, with a reduction of flowers. Late summer sees a field of corn ready for harvest. Fall, sees the fields turn to pumpkins and a few plants turn brown. Winter... Christmas, can be snow and festive... and this year I’m working on a snow-less theme.

Sometimes the occasion is a little more unique... like a horror theme, that saw the mall’s front garden turn to bone and blood, deadly sounds of monsters, ruined changes to decorations always in place... even odd lighting, for those who don’t have constant daytime lighting. The most amount of work went into a Jungle Theme. This is where I took my normal woodland garden and turned it to pure jungle. Broke out many rubble plants, from Maginica... new banana trees, rubble palms, and even put a decorative swampy river down the middle clogged with debris, complete with a waterfall. Nothing got in the way of travelers. Nothing... outside the nasty surprise of 15 screaming gorillas hidden in the foliage. Now, THAT was funny!... watching the reaction of people who didn’t know it was coming. :-) Goodness knows the expense put into that one... all for fun. Changed the house name every few days to something else Jungle. What can I say? I love this aspect of our game. Not even having to replace a single vendor.

Another reason why people who run contests should be more aware of this idea can be explained in these 2 pictures of the same building, in my town. The house’s name is “The First Church of Candy” and it sits right next to the main mall building. The theme is CANDY... and it's decoration was being changed into a “Gingerbread House”. One is the normal decoration... the second is after 3-4 hours work. What an amazing difference, wouldn’t you say?

Before:
Posted Image

After:
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Normally, I do something for each of the 7 houses in my town. 6 in the town proper and 1 by the Atlantic Tram Moongate. It's fun! Granted I’m no fan of snow... and just looking at our game world in snow makes me cold... but it is for Christmas. Seems like in our real life neighborhood, people don’t even bother anymore. In game, you don’t even have to really climb a ladder. You can't beat that! :cool

Posted Image
The Red & Purple Pixies of the Yew Wood [Town] - established 2001

#2
Kayhynn

Kayhynn

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I take things into consideration when I do contests for that very reason. It's why I say it can be an entire house (or multiple houses next to each other for some houses) or a single room, it's all up to the player.

I know many players decorate their houses for each season, others don't, so i try to make it easy for anyone who wants to participate.

#3
EvilPixieWorks

EvilPixieWorks

    Owner: Red & Purple Emp.

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GOOD! :cool

And wonderful to hear.

You are a rare hero in the world of decoration contests... and your avatar is distractivly too bouncy. lol =)

Unfortunately, we sponsored a contest a couple years ago with tons of gold and prizes... and only had 5 entries. Hate to say the R&P will never do it again, but even with 5... the judges had a fight with who should win what because all had put such work into it.