Since the original release of The Sims Windows version in 2000 by EA (Electronic Arts) I have been hooked on this game like many others. The Sims for those of you who are not familiar with it (there might be a few of you still out there), is a strategic life-simulation game. You play through the daily life of a Sims – a virtual person. You can build their house, choose their career, influence their relationships, and much more. If you have not had the opportunity to play it and love life simulation games I or even just building houses, I suggest you take some time and try out this game.
I have played both the PC and console versions of this game, though I prefer PC.It is easy to get lost for hours in this game, there is something exciting about being able to completely control someone and every aspect of their lives. This game has also brought around paranoia for exactly that reason. Are there beings out there controlling our lives like we do this sims. It makes you stop and think about life for sure.
The Sims franchise has grown into a multi million dollar franchise crossing three versions, and countless expansion packs for each which I have outlined below.
The Sims was originally developed by Maxis before being published by Electronic arts in 2000. There were Seven expansion packs developed for the pc version of the game including; Livin’ Large, Hot Date, and Unleased. However, I did not have the privilege of having any of the expansion packs, only the base game. There were also two versions created exclusively for consoles; The Sims Bustin’ Out and The Urbz: Sims in the City. I owned both of these games for Gamecube when I was younger. Bustin’ out was very much like the pc version of the game where you could build a house, visit other system and live every day life. The Urbz had a new spin on the traditional game play, you now lived in an apartment and traveled by subway to different districts to work and meet new people and gain a reputation. The higher your reputation the more advanced your apartment became and the more districts you were able to travel to. I prefered Bustin’ Out over the other console game mainly because it combined many great features of the PC game with its expansion packs. I also prefered Bustin’ Out over the PC version at this stage because growing up we had one old Windows 95 Compaq computer in the house that I had limited time on.
The Sims 2 was by far my most memorable and favorite installment of The Sims. It was also a strategic life simulation game, this time they just improved what already had become a success. The Sims 2 is also open-ended much like the original and included lifetime goals, wants and needs making your Sims more like a real person. It also built upon an aging concept giving your Sims stages of life. The Sims 2 improved on the graphics of The Sims as well giving the player a new full 3D view on the world of their sim. There were a total of 8 expansion packs for the Sims 2 of which I owned all but two. Some of my favorites included Open for Business which allowed you to be your own store owner, Pets introducing playable cats and dogs, and Sims University allowing you to take your Young Adult sim to school. These expansion packs and improved life-like characteristics of each sim is what truly got me hooked on this game and caused my to start spreading the word to my friends, inviting them over to play as well. Although at the time I did not realize how much, nor did I think I would still be playing this game into my adult life and will probably introduce to my children when I get to that stage in my life. In my opinion this is so far the best Sims game, and it seems others share my opinion because The Sims 2 currently sits at the top of the best-selling computer game list (the list is based on sales – you can find that list here.)
The Sims 3 was not an interest of my when it first came out in 2010. I was still playing The Sims 2, perfectly happy with all my added expansion packs and did not want to jump to the drastic changes they made in Sims 3. Eventually though I took a leap of faith and purchased The Sims 3. The Sims 3 make great advancements in the game play of The Sims. It added even more customization to your sim with likes, dislikes, and many more personal options. New skills and methods by which to gain them, new careers, opportunities to buy out Business to gain addition income, and new worlds. The more intuitive and advanced build/buy modes made building houses in The Sims fun instead of a hassle, and allowed for more customization to create more elaborate homes. It also improved drastically on the 3D graphics making The Sims more realistic than ever. There are currently 10 expansion packs for this game, many of which are similar to those found for The Sims 2. This installment of The Sims is also constantly expanding with new updates and more expansion packs yet to come. After some time playing The Sims 3 I have grown to quite enjoy it almost as much as I do The Sims 2, especially with the new expansion packs and game functionality they are adding with each pack. The Sims 3 PC is currently my prefered Sims game choice however it is still not my favorite, though that may change.
The future Sims is still looking bright. While there are still expansion packs in the works for The Sims 3, EA announced earlier this year that they plan to release The Sims 4 in early 2014.