How to Make Tattoos in "Sims 3" With the TSR Workshop

Written by lissa delisle
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How to Make Tattoos in "Sims 3" With the TSR Workshop
The Sims Resource Workshop lets you to turn virtually an image into a custom tattoo. (Jupiterimages/BananaStock/Getty Images)

"Sims 3" gives gamers an unique feature of tattoos for your characters. With The Sims Resource (TSR) custom content tool, you can create your own original tattoos and import them directly into your game. Adobe Photoshop helps you develop your tattoos that you can colour customise for each character within the game. "Sims 3" does come with preloaded tattoos for your characters, but using TSR Workshop allows you to further customise your gaming experience.

Skill level:
Moderately Challenging

Things you need

  • The Sims Resource Workshop
  • Adobe Photoshop

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  1. 1

    Install the latest version of TSR Workshop and Adobe Photoshop. Both programs are needed to create and install your custom-made tattoos. You should have both programs open, but close down the game while creating custom content.

  2. 2

    Click "Create new project" in TSR Workshop and choose "Clothing," and then click "Next." In the clothing category, choose a tattoo from the existing list and click "Next." Give the tattoo a unique name and title, and then click "Next." Click "Ok" when finished.

  3. 3

    Go to the Texture tab on the upper right hand side of the screen, and click the small "+" next to Core. You will see an image of the tattoo you have chosen. Click the tattoo, and an Edit button will appear. Click "Edit," choose "Export" and save your image. This will save the tattoo you have chosen to your computer.

  4. 4

    Open the picture you want to use for your tattoo in Adobe Photoshop. The picture should be a simple image with no more than four colours. Press "Control + A" on your keyboard and choose "Edit" and then "Copy." Now you can minimise or close your picture.

  5. 5

    Open the picture of the tattoo you chose from TSR Workshop and saved to your computer. Click "Edit" and then "Paste." This will paste the image of your new tattoo over the tattoo you picked from TSR Workshop. Click "Control + T" on your keyboard to adjust the size and placement of your new tattoo. When you have the size and placement the way you want, click the box in the upper right hand side of the screen. It will now have a check mark in it.

  6. 6

    Click on the small rubbish bin on the right side of the screen to remove any leftover background image. If the background is transparent, use the fill tool on the left side of your screen in the tool pane to fill it in with a solid colour.

  7. 7

    Click on the Channels tab on the right side of the screen. Each separate channel must now be edited except the first one labelled RGB. In each channel, just remember that anything white is visible in your tattoo, while anything black is not. You will be able to recolor each channel (or part) of your tattoo when you play your game, so in each channel you should leave a different part of the picture white. That way, in the game, you can customise each part of the tattoo a different colour. If your tattoo is a rose for example, in one channel leave only the stem white; in another channel, leave the bud white; and in another channel, leave only one petal white. Each individual part of the picture that you leave white will be able to be coloured again in the game.

  8. 8

    Click "Layer" and then "Flatten Image." Your picture may look red and green, which is normal. You will fix the colours later when you open it in TSR Workshop, but for now leave the colours as they are. Click "File," "Save" and choose DXT5 ARGB 8bpp | interpolated alpha. Click "Save" again.

  9. 9

    Go back into TSR Workshop and click "Import." Find the image you just manipulated in Adobe Photoshop, and click "Open" and then "Done." Click the "+" next to Color, and then choose which colours you want your new tattoo to have when you play your game. "R" stands for red, "G" is for green, "B" for blue and "A" means alpha, or black. Change each colour until you get the picture you want for your tattoo.

  10. 10

    Save your tattoo image to your computer by choosing "File" and then "Save." To put the tattoo in your game, click "File," then "Export to .Sims3pack." Give the tattoo a name and save the file. Now you can install the file by going to the location you saved the file and double clicking it. Once installed, you will see your new tattoo when you customise your character.

Tips and warnings

  • If your image in Adobe Photoshop has less than 4 colours, colour the extra channels black. Go to Texture, then MaskInfo and change the status to False.

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