The SCURK FAQ (Unofficial)
REV 1.46 - 6/27/99
Please send any questions you think should be in this FAQ.
Note that this FAQ, for the most part, covers only questions not found in the manual.
New questions have a symbol to the right.
Updated questions display [updated] to the right.
- What is SCURK?
- What can I do with SCURK?
- What do I need to run SCURK?
- Where can I buy SCURK? [updated]
- Where can I download others' tilesets?
- Where can I find other web pages for SCURK?
- How do I use 4x4 tilebase buildings efficiently?
- How do I convert DOS tilesets to Windows & Mac tilesets?
- How does SCURK and SimCity 2000 handle graphics?
- How do I convert SCURK files between platforms or filetypes?
- How do I load graphics (gif, pcx) into my cities and tilesets?
- How do I stop color shifting in SCURK for Windows?
- How do I quickly erase the background in SCURK for Windows?
- Can others see my new graphics if I simply send them my city?
- Do new graphics have any effect on saved cities or the simulator?
- How do I send my graphics to other people?
- How do I create animations?
- Do I need SCURK in order to load others' graphics into my cities?
- What is a tileset?
- What is a tile?
- What is a tilebase?
- Why can't I edit roads, power lines, and other infrastructure?
Q. What is SCURK?
A. SCURK stands for SimCity Urban Renewal Kit. Like a scenario package, it's an add-on for SimCity 2000 that expands SimCity 2000's flexibility and depth. It's a retail product and thus can't be downloaded or shared with others. See the Introduction to SCURK page to learn more about the program, or see the next question to find out what you can do with it.
Q. What can I do with SCURK?
A. SCURK allows you to alter or replace the buildings in SimCity 2000, as well as create brand-new ones. You can create completely new collections of buildings to create specific themes or whatever you like. You can place any building anywhere in a new city or an existing city, without money constraints. You can also print your cities with several options at your disposal.
Q. What do I need to run SCURK?
A. You'll need an IBM (Windows 3.1, Windows 95, DOS 3.3 or above) or Macintosh machine, each with SVGA and at least 512K of video ram. 4MB ram, a hard disk, and a mouse are also required. In addition, you'll have to have SimCity 2000 installed on your hard drive.
Q. Where can I buy SCURK?
A. Maxis no longer sells SCURK as a standalone product. However, SCURK comes bundled with the "SimCity 2000 Special Edition" package and the "Ultimate Sim" package, both packages containing many extra bonus tilesets. SimCity 2000 Special Edition can be bought directly online through Computer Games Online or at Best Buy or similar stores for only about $20-$30.
Q. Where can I download others' tilesets?
A. You can download them from this site's SCURK Graphics page or from various on-line forums on Compuserve, AOL, or Prodigy. See the next question for additional SCURK sites.
Q. Where can I find other web pages for SCURK?
A. Please visit the SCURK links page for more links. You can check out SCURK on this site here.
Q. How do I use 4x4 tilebase buildings efficiently?
A. You need a 4x4 tilebase to start with. Placing an object designed for a 4x4 tilebase into a 3x3 tilebase will result in the object being clipped.In the DOS version of SCURK, it will clip both the base of the object, as well as the top (that is, if the object is tall). Doing so in the Windows version of SCURK will result in only the base being clipped. So, if you're using DOS, you will need to place the object into a 4x4 tilebase such as the arcology or power plant tiles. If you're using Windows, then you may need to edit the base of the object to look good in the smaller tilebase.
Q. How do I convert DOS tilesets to Windows & Mac tilesets?
Q. How does SCURK and SimCity 2000 handle graphics?
A. Well, all the graphics (buildings, infrastructure, etc.) you see in SimCity 2000 are stored in the SC2000.DAT file of your hard disk. The .DAT file is quite large, and so handling the entire file would be a pain. Instead, SCURK saves graphics sets as .til files. These .til files are relatively small and thus can be transported easily (the more buildings in a set, the bigger the .til file will be). When you load a new graphic from a tileset into SC2000, SCURK writes the new information into the SC2000.dat file.
Q. How do I convert SCURK files between platforms or filetypes?
A. The only tileset conversion that works is from DOS to Windows. Windows can't be converted to DOS, Mac can't be converted to Windows, etc. However, there are other ways to use SCURK graphics between platforms. Visit the SCURK conversions page at http://www.sc3000.com/sc2000/scurk/convert.htm for more on this.
Q. How do I load graphics (gif, pcx) into my cities and tilesets?
A. For Windows and Macintosh, you can use the edit menu to paste images to SCURK's Paint the Town utility. Just load the image you downloaded into your favorite graphics program (for Windows 95, I recommend Paint Shop Pro from Jasc), copy it to the clipboard, and then paste it to an empty tilebase in SCURK's Paint the Town utility.
Q. How do I prevent color shifting in SCURK for Windows?
A. Windows is very picky about color palettes, and it appears that it won't fix the index on an incoming image to suit its needs. You'll have to apply a compatible palette. To learn how to do this, visit http://www.sc3000.com/sc2000/scurk/wincolor.htm
Q. How do I quickly erase the background in SCURK for Windows?
A. You'll need to do it with another paint program, and use the RGB color values of 0,0,0 to fill in the background with the flood fill tool. The full procedure is detailed at http://www.sc3000.com/sc2000/scurk/winbg.htm
Q. Can others see my new graphics if I simply send them my city?
A. No. Only your SC2000.dat file will contain your graphics. You'll need to send them your tileset so they can update their SC2000.dat file.
Q. Do new graphics have any effect on saved cities or the simulator?
A. No. Each building has a purpose in the game, and it carries out that purpose no matter what it looks like.
Q. How do I send my graphics to other people?
A. You'll need to send them the .til file of your graphics.
Q. How do I create animations?
A. In reality, SimCity 2000 has no "real" animation. Everything is done by color cycling (except for moving boats, helicopters, planes, or things of that nature). To represent movement, you'll have to place cycling pixels in a certain order to give the illusion that something is actually scrolling or changing position. There's quite a few colors in the SimCity 2000 palette that are set aside for cycling.
Q. Do I need SCURK in order to load others' graphics into my cities?
A. Yes. SCURK is the only program that can safely write new graphics to your SC2000.dat file.
Q. What is a tileset?
A. It's a collection of buildings and tiles which are saved by SCURK. They can be small or large, carrying any number of buildings.
Q. What is a tile?
A. A tile in SimCity 2000 represents one acre. Examples are road sections, low density residential houses, trees, or an airport control tower.
Q. What is a tilebase?
A. It's one or several tiles that make up a building or structure. Tilebases can be 1x1, 2x2, 3x3, or 4x4 in size.
Q. Why can't I edit roads, power lines, and other infrastructure?
A. Not everything in SimCity 2000 is alterable. Infrastructure must remain "as-is". Pretty much everything else is alterable. I guess Maxis felt that roads look the same everywhere, as do power lines and highways. Tsk, tsk, Maxis! Not everyone lives in California! :-)