Sunday, September 18, 2005


Because everyone loves it, and it's the most popular computer game of all time, and because of the shocking fact that 60 percent of players are women, I bought a copy of The Sims. I love simulations, and strategy, and I'm open to a more social, less-linear game.

But I found it tedious and dull. After doing the tutorial rounds, I poked around and decided to play this pair of grandparents. They're probably in their 60s, and I figured they're retired and had a steady income. I bought them a bed and a refrigerator, and had them make friends with passersby. They soon grew unhappy and irritable. They wanted a well-decorated home, but I'd spent all their money already. I had to spent a ridiculous amount of time reminding them to eat, sleep, and use the bathroom.

The female character had dreams and aspirations of learning new things. The male character had an aspiration to have sex with at least three other Sims.

I couldn't even keep them fed, much less get them laid. I failed.

So then I played the same couple again. I think that their aspirations change each time you play them, because this time the old guy just wanted expensive things. I had them find jobs right away, I decorated their house nicely, and I tried to watch their bladders and other comfort carefully.

But I still failed. They get upset over the stupidest things, like when they can't reach the phone because a chair is in the way. I woke up from a gaming coma after a few hours of trying to keep these people happy, and I didn't feel entertained.

Am I the only one?
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