Sometimes it feels like you’re not even in control of your own life. Well, if you cannot be in control of your life, why not take control of someone else’s? The SIMs is an entertaining life simulator where you can create, control and live out everything you could never be.
In the SIMs, you have the ability to create a unique human-like creature that they call a “Sim” which is obviously short for “Simulation” which is the purpose of this game, to simulate life in a family setting. When you create your Sim, you first have to name it, choose it’s traits by adding or deducting points to its trait bars. By sliding it down, your Sim will be more messy, lazy, playful, ect., and by sliding it up, your Sim will become more neat, active, serious, ect., these traits decide its astrological sign. After that, you choose a gender, a hair style, and of course, you must clothe it. In this particular game, the choices are not very vast, which is something they add on to in later editions.
The graphics did not impress me. I had gone back to this game after playing the Sims 3 for my computer, which is a huge step up from this early game, so that may have something to do with that, but still, the Sims in this game are static and have unnatural movements. Clothing appears to be painted on the bodies, and their hair does not move at all.
The sound effects are annoying, and are often delayed or misplaced. One interesting thing is the Sim’s speech. They have a very distinct language that is unidentifiable. I believe the correct name for this is “Simlish”. We conclude that it is just random gibberish, and has no real connection to current languages at all.
This game has 2 modes of gameplay, which are: “Get A Life” (story mode) and “Play The Sims” (open-ended sandbox mode).
In Get A Life, you create a Sim to play the game through with. You can create yourself, or make up someone new. In story mode you have specific goals to reach to advance, which are rewarded by unlocking new items and moving into bigger and better houses. Through gameplay, you get a job, work for promotions, make friends, get married and start a family.
Also, under the “Get A Life” menu, there is a “Bonus” section, where you can play a series of Mini Games with two players, such as “The Frat House” where you must make more girls fall in love with you than your opponent, or “The Museum” where you must get more donations than the person you are playing against. I have a lot of fun with these games, they are often why I pick up the game now.
In the “Play The Sims” mode, you get to name a Neighborhood, build homes, and move Sims in to live. This mode does not have any goals to complete, you play however you want. Because of this, it can often get boring quickly.
Another staple in what makes The SIMs the game we know and love is the ability to build and furnish homes for your Sims. With this ability, you can let your inner architect and interior designer take over. However, this game severely lacks variety; you cannot add more than one floor or change the roof color. Due to this, the building tool is very easy to use, in my opinion; more options make things harder and more complicated.
Overall, I enjoy this game from time to time. Although it is very alien to me now that I play the improved Sims 3, when I want a break from the pressure of aging, multiple story homes, and the sheer complexity of the advanced game, I turn to this one to relieve my stress, and feel a rush of nostalgia from when I was younger and played this game for hours on end. I cannot say I do that any longer, but it is a refreshing change now and again.