How do you build a virtual house?


Quick Answer

Build a virtual house by using a professional architectural design application such as AutoCAD, a generic 3-D modeling tool such as Blender, or the build mode of "The Sims 4." While Blender is free to use, the other two cost money. All three applications are available for both Windows and Mac OS X systems.

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Full Answer

AutoCAD is a professional drawing application that has 2-D and 3-D architectural capacities. The application can draft layouts, design virtual houses from ground up, and take 3-D renders to visualize the house. It offers tools to take exact measurements in real-life units, draw practically any shape for walls, and prepare the final design for 3-D printing. Autodesk offers a free fully-featured version of AutoCAD under its education program. As long as you do not use the product for commercial purposes, you can indefinitely renew your subscription to the free version.

Blender is an open-source free 3-D modeling application that can handle almost any kind of 3-D design, including virtual houses. As it relies on the traditional polygonal method to render meshes, the measurements are not always true to real-life values. Blender includes a realistic render engine called Cycles. When rendering the final design of the house, Cycles can simulate the lights, shadows, physics and volume to offer a realistic representation of the design.

Although it's intended for entertainment purposes, the video game "The Sims 4" includes a build mode that allows you to build a house and fill it with furniture as you see fit. The build mode includes tools to build a virtual house from scratch, demolish parts of a house, adjust the land around the house, and build multiple floors.

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