I can’t say that I’ve been an avid Sims gamer, nor fan, for that matter. Sure, the game is pretty much awesome if you get into it, but I’ve had my fill of it, and because of how similar the sequels are to the first one, I can’t say that I can get much more juice out of the series than I already have. I’ve played all the three vanilla versions, some addons, built a ton of houses, destroyed hundreds of simulated lives and built up several others (in some cases both, in different order). So for the occasion of the 10 year anniversary of this highly successful game series, a retrospection.
I can’t question the quality of the Sims games. Even the first one is a technical masterpiece. The second one only took everything in the realm of true 3D, while the third one put everything in perspective allowing you to actually get a feel for the neighboring buildings while not detracting from the overall experience. I’ve had a bit of gaming time with each of the vanilla versions, and a little bit of the expansions as well, but I can’t say I have played any as much as the first one. It had all the right things for the nine-year old me. It had funny gibberish, nice animations, and plenty for me to play… let’s say dollhouse, with.
I can’t say I was fond of dolls, but I liked making house plans with sticks on the floor and use stuff like modeling clay to form stuff for my GI to do. He would get money, and with the money he would get food, which would keep him healthy. I sort of considered it Sims 0.5. The “working GI” thing went on until my bigger brother got annoyed one evening and ripped the poor workaholic GI to pieces. It was gruesome, head ripped off, arms halved and quartered and legs tattered, me crying my soul through my eyes. This was slightly before the first Sims.
When it actually came out and I got my hands on it, I was enthralled. I loved building houses. I loved building up my sims to build those houses. I loved to make structures which would support that little lab rat of mine. It was a lab rat, one with which I would make hundreds of experiments in order to get more out of the experience. Eventually, the items and people I could interact with went thin and overused. I found out about the cheats present in the game and that gave it a slight second wind.
The expansion pack gave it some much-needed content, but even that only managed to lengthen my wanting to play the game for just a little longer. Eventually I fell out of the expansion field, their numbers becoming so many they wouldn’t even fit in my hard-drive.
Before this, however, I got the first sim you control, the tutorial Bob Newbie, and gave him an overhaul. I put his wife thing in a walled off room and Billy Bob in a thing I called “Traininator”. Basically I sold everything poor Bob and his woman thing had and used all the money for training benches, bookshelves, chess sets and so on, all used to improve this little redneck kinda guy with a bald head and rich beard to perfection.
His wife thing died of hunger and exhaustion eventually, not before yelling for about 3 days about pork chops and beds. I think she wet herself once or twice in the meantime, so I guess it was an ugly death, standing hungry and exhausted in a pool of her own urine… Apparently I was really sadistic at the time. On the other hand, she was actually quite happy about the little picture I placed in the death-room. And about the window. Light improves the Room rating, see?
Bob had a different fate – he had no bed anymore, actually his only natural needs satisfiers were an espresso machine, a toilet, a shower and a fridge, out of which he would get a snack if he was hungry. It took him a while to get trained to perfection, about three weeks of drinking coffee instead of sleeping, working out to get body points, playing chess by himself to get logic points and reading. He read a ton. If that bookshelf of his wasn’t infinite, I think that he would’ve finished it plenty of times by the time he reached the level of perfection I wanted in him. After this I created a bunch of dudes to live in the neighborhood with Bob and to be his friends. Bob was happy about this.
Then I got Bob a job. As the assistant of an assistant teacher or something like that. The idea is that he started low. It only took him about two weeks or so to get from the assistant to the assistant, to awesome laureate of the I don’t know what prize. I guess being awesome pays off eventually. After a few months during which he exercised his perfection by going to work in a limo, Billy Bob Newbie decided he needed a change of pace, a new job. So from awesome Laureate he became a bit less of an awesome cook. Then I decided to buy him a pool. As he was swimming in it, I removed the ladder… accidentally. I watched him die… swimming around like the fit beardy fiddle he was. Well, at least he had his fun. Then I stopped playing.
Damn… mighty huge article here. I guess I’ll call it the day with this one today. Check out tomorrow for the sequel’s success story and ultimate demise.