Basic Object Recolor for "The Sims 2"

Maxis has not provided an official tool to create object recolors. The modding community has figured a way around this using a tool called SimPE. With the Wizards of SimPE, doing a basic recolor is an easy process; especially if you are comfortable with a graphics editing program.

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Download SimPE & Required Software

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After the download is complete, install SimPE. Read the warnings on using SimPE. It is possible to corrupt your game files if you change the wrong values. Remember to back up your files if you plan on exploring SimPE.

During the installation process, you will also be given a list of software that you may want to download and install.

  • Microsoft.Net 1.1 is required for SimPE to work.
  • For better compression results download and install Nvidia DDS Utilities.
  • Color Options Enabler Package is available at the SimPE┬áhomepage.

You will need Graphics software to recolor the exported graphics file. With many graphics programs, there is a free trial, or you could try free software if you do not already have another program to use.

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Start SimPE

Wizards of SimPE

After the required software is downloaded and installed, start Wizards of SimPE. The shortcut is located in the SimPE folder under your list of programs in Windows.

Click on Recolors, this allows you to recolor Maxis objects. It will take some time to move to the next screen.

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Choose Object to Recolor


For this tutorial, we will choose an object that very few colors. In the future, when you decide to recolor objects with multiple colors, you will need to you use the magic wand or select tool to change parts of the objects. This time we will keep it simple possible.

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Select Fabric to Recolor


Scroll down the possible fabrics to recolor and click the ivory one. Make sure Autoselect matching textures is checked. Click Next.

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Export Files to Recolor

Recolor in Graphics Software

Select the displayed file, it should be the ivory sofa file. Click the Export Button. You will be prompted to save the file. Create a folder just for your recolors, in 'My Documents' or another place you feel comfortable with. Name the file 'sofa_distress' since that is the object's name in the game.

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Open Favorite Graphics Program & Modify

Select the Fabric

Since is the time you will need a graphics editing program. For this tutorial, I am using Photoshop. The tools we will be using can be found in other graphics software.

Start your favorite editing program and open the sofa distress file.

Zoom in wood that is top, center of the file. Using the Rectangle Marquee Tool (or another selection tool), select the brown wood.

After the selection is made, choose Select from the file menu - then Inverse (or Invert). The fabric of the sofa will now be selected and ready to be edited.

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Changing the Object's Color

Adjust Color

Next, create an Adjustment layer by going to the Layer Menu - New Adjustment Layer - Hue/Saturation. A screen will appear with sliders for Hue, Saturation, and Lightness. Experiment with the sliders until you get the color you desire.

If you cannot create an adjustment layer, you can also check under Image for Adjustments and change the background layer directly. In some software, you may have to duplicate the original layer first. This can usually be done by right-clicking the layer in the layer palette.

Merge layers before saving: Layer - Merge Visible.

Save your work. Make sure it is in png format. In Photoshop I used Save for the Web, and choose png under settings.

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Import Recolored Object File

Import Recolored File

Go back to SimPE and click the Import button. Select the edited file and click Open.

Once it is imported click Next.

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Give Object a Name and Finish

Choose a Filename in Simpe

Enter a filename for your newly recolored sofa. Give it a name that is something you will remember as yours.

Click Finish. The object will be saved and be appear in "The Sims 2."