From TS3wiki

This page discusses general screenshot information and the differences between good and bad screenshots.

Whether it's for a story, a memorable moment, or just for fun, screenshots are an important part of The Sims 3 for many players.

Important Keys

Tab Starts Camera Mode (Does away with the UI [user interface])
C Snaps Screenshot
W Camera Move Foward
S Camera Moves Backward
Z or + Camera Zooms In
X or - Camera Zooms Out
E Camera Moves Up (camera mode only)
Q Camera Moves Down (camera mode only)
0 (zero) or P Pauses and Restarts Time
Mouse Wheel/ Middle Button Holding down and moving the mouse in any direction moves the camera accordingly (does not work in camera mode)
Right Mouse Button Holding down and moving the mouse in any of the four cardinal directions moves the camera accordingly (does not work in camera mode)

Did you know?

In TS2, in some instances, it was better to use the 'print screen' button to get a good screenshot versus using the 'C' key. The quality was better and the image was larger. However, in TS3, 'C' snaps the picture and gives you a shot the size of your screen and in good quality (or as good a quality as you have set). On some machines it's been known that 'print screen' when used in TS3 causes a very dark, almost unrecognizable image.

Cheats You Should Know

HideHeadlineEffects on/off Removes plumbbobs, story bubbles, and skill/progress bars from atop sim's heads.

Helpful Tips and Tricks

  • Avoid things that don't belong in the screen. For instance, if you're taking a screenshot of a solitary hermit man, avoid getting other sims in the shot. If there are any modding objects that you've used to help with your screenshot, try to angle your camera so you can't see them, or completely move them out of the way.
  • Always check your camera settings, they should be set to the highest possible settings that your computer will allow.
  • A great screenshot should not need a 'description'. Remember that viewers are not playing your game and they do not know what your sims are like, so you must portray that in your screenshot. For example, If you're showing two people who absolutely despise each other having a conversation, wait until they both look disgusted or more dramatic poses with the other person before taking your screenshot.
  • Always remember to have the walls on the lot completely up before taking a screenshot.

  • If you don't want to use the 'hideheadlineeffects' cheat, angle the camera (or zoom in closer) so that you cannot see plumbbobs, thought bubbles, and skill/progress bars.

  • If you're taking a shot at night, or a dark room, play with different lights and move them into different positions around your sims to help brighten the sims faces (or subject). You'll still have a 'dark' feel, but you'll be able to better see the subject of the shot.

  • If your outdoor foliage is poking through the wall, you can adjust your angle or place something in front of the wall so that it cannot be seen. Or, even consider moving the shrubbery/object temporarily for the sake of the shot.

  • Avoid the grid lines that come with Buy/Build Mode. Always take your screenshots in live mode. If you don't want things to move, remember you can pause time.

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