10/10, 96%, Must Buy
Ryan: This is one of those must have
games that everyone out there should
enjoy. Slap down $40 at Wal-Mart or
wherever you can find it. Addictive fun
at its best, Wright should be the next
guy in the game designers hall of fame.
Robot: HOPEFULLY YOU WILL
PLAY THIS GAME SO MUCH
THAT YOU WILL BECOME A
MIND SLAVE TO YOUR
COMPUTER, EASING THE
MINUSCULE EFFORT IT WOULD
TAKE TO HARVEST YOU.
Ryan: Welcome to Bit by bit, where I've been stuck with the unfortunate
partner of the Robot From The Future in order to bring you reviews of the latest
video games, and perhaps something extra, every now and then.
Robot: WATCH YOUR TONGUE, CARBON BASED BAG OF FILTH. IT
IS NOT AS IF I DON'T HAVE OTHER PUTRID HUMANS TO
Ryan: In this column we review SimCity creator Will Wright's
new people simulator The Sims.
Robot: I WOULD POINT OUT THAT IN THE FUTURE WE HAVE OUR
OWN PEOPLE SIMULATOR... IT IS CALLED "MEAT GRINDER".
Ryan: First off, this is about the most addictive thing around.
Even more so than Roller Coaster Tycoon. You will ignore your own life in
order to either advance your sims up the career ladder of their choice (from
politician to pickpocket), the social ladder (dating, making out, havin' babies), or
let them degenerate into lazy slobs (Jason's sims kept pissing
Robot: THE MOST FUN THAT CAN BE GLEAMED FROM THIS GAME
IS TO ALLOW YOUR UNSKILLED AT COOKING SIMS TO START A
GREASE FIRE AND EXTERMINATE THEMSELVES. THE LOOK OF
PUTRID FEAR ON THEIR VIRTUAL FACES AS THEIR BRAND NEW
$3,000 DOLLAR COUCH GOES UP IN ASHES SHORTLY BEFORE
THEIR OWN SKIN FOLLOWS SUIT IS REMINISCENT OF THE KILNS
Ryan: I guess I have to admit a little bit of gloom in
this game is good for a laugh. Like creating a bit of jealous centering around a
sim with two lovers. Adele slaps Thargar for kissing their mutual love, Akane,
and Thargar sobs like a baby.
Robot: I ALSO EMITTED A LOUD ELECTRONIC CHUCKLE AS MY
SIM ELECTROCUTED HERSELF TRYING TO FIX A BROKEN
Ryan: This is one deep game. You create your sim, choosing what they look
like from a variety of skins (see sidebar for more info), their gender, adult or
child, and skin tone. Then you can fill in their basic traits: neat, active, outgoing,
playful, and nice. Sims with a low neat rating tend to leave dishes and trash on
the floor. Sims with a low active rating end up as couch potatoes.
Robot: SIMS WITH A LOW NICE RATING FIND IT HARD TO FIND A
MATE, AND THEREFORE SHOULD BE PROCESSED INTO CRUDE
Ryan: Next you plop your sim (or family of) into either a pre made house or a
vacant lot where you can use the easy-to-use building tools to make the house of your dreams. Or what you can afford for the $20,000 you start
with. Then you get to go shopping! Wright and Co. have given your sims a mall
to be proud of. Everything from the dinky black and white TV set to $1200
parisienne dinning chairs to a hot tub can be yours for a price.
Robot: THERE IS A STRANGE LACK OF ANY OBJECTS WHICH MAY
BE USED TO COMMIT VIOLENCE AGAINST OTHERS, NOR ARE
YOU ALOUD TO PLACE THE FLESHLINGS INTO THE GARBAGE
Ryan: General play has you balancing your sims time in order to fulfill
his or her needs. And, like in real life, time is short. Do you let your sim play
video games until she's sweaty and tired, or do you force her to take a bath?
And when do you have time for friends? Become a social hermit leads to
depression, which means your sims won't do anything, invariably causing all of
their other ratings to go down.
Robot: IN THE FUTURE, THE ONLY THING YOU HUMANS WILL
HAVE TO DO IS WAIT FOR PROCESSING.
Ryan: Like I said, the game is deep and addicting. Like almost all of Wright's
games, there's no real goal, so you decide whether you want to work your way
up the pay scale so you can buy That Mansion on the hill, or if you want your
one sim to become the love interest of the whole neighborhood. That's men as
well as women, as either can have a romantic relationship. Unfortunately, like in
real life, homosexual couples can't get married. Speaking of marriage, it may well be the weirdest part of the game. It's treated as an event that brings
someone into your household. Afterwards, however, either member can feel
free to marry anyone else as long as they agree.
Over all, The Sims is an excellent game. The only warning is that it will eat up all
of your time.
Robot: HOPEFULLY NEXT TIME WE WILL BE ABLE TO REVIEW A
GAME THAT INVOLVES A LOT MORE SLAUGHTERING OF
HUMANS. THIS GAME IS TO SLOW AND BACKWARDS IN THAT
PURSUIT. IF I WISH TO CUT OPEN A FLESHLING, IT SHOULD BE
EFFICIENT AND IMMEDIATE.
Buy The Sims at Chips & Bits
Tips, tricks, and extras:
The first tip is to head over to www.thesims.com and check out all the
extras they have. A new item or skin pack is put out at least every Thursday,
along with programs to design your own
skins, wallpaper and floor tiling. You
can also put your family on their web
site and download about a bagazillion others.
The first things to buy? Get the best bed
and the best bath tub. The bed will give
your sims the most energy for their
nights sleep, and the bath will help their
hygiene and comfort levels. Also invest
in a bookshelf so you can learn to
cook. Using a stove without cooking
skills can lead to fire and or death.
Always hire the maid. And be sure you
have enough funds to pay her! She's
cheap but if you can't afford it she'll
take some of your worldly possessions
and you won't be able to hire her again
for a while
In general, it's best to buy things that
fulfill multiple needs at once.
Remember: items that are a group
activity can also fulfill social need.
Buy a phone! even if your house is
nothing but a stand for your phone, buy it!
Put burglar alarms on the outside of
your house on both sides so that the
cops will catch the crook before he gets
a chance to steal anything.
The only room that really needs walling
off is the bathroom. Less walls means
it's more efficient for your sims to move around.
The dresser lets you change your clothes.
Trees don't need to be watered and
they do the same for your room rating
as the various flowers and bushes.
If you need to hire a handyman,
remember to tell him to leave when he's
finished. Just like in real life, they have
a tendency to sit around doing nothing,
and since they are paid hourly, you foot
the bill for their leisure.
The biggest actual benefit of a pool is
the increase in your outdoors room rating.