CIM’s or Sims

How is he happy?

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Why is this issue still happening?

I started writing this post in December because of that stoopid bug, but I never published because I stopped playing and returned to Cities Skylines.

PC gaming started for me with SimCity all those years ago, I was so into the city building thing. When the Sims came along it was almost like zooming into the city map and picking out individual Sims to follow and observe. Sims 2 and 3 took the city building aspect further and gave me generations of families to grow. I don’t remember much of TS2 but I was addicted to TS3 even though it was blighted by performance issues – although I think a lot of those issues were brought about by customisable the game had become and by how much CC was installed, and there was a lot of really good stuff available that brought so much to the game – and of course like a double headed snake, the game reached a point where it needed mods to run smooth. So it had run its course, too much CC slowed the game down and yet without mods it was a stuttering mess.

TS4 then loomed large, and it promised to end performance issues and give us a glorious Sim world populated with beautiful little Sims that would be more individual and more autonomous than ever before. And they are…

The Sims are cool, the environments they live in are cool, even the little neighbourhoods they live in are quite cool, it’s just too much like playing dolls than city managing for me. I haven’t installed World Adventures (or whatever the EP is called) it’s waiting for me along with a bunch of updates, because I just can’t get excited enough to take a sim dolly on a trip to the jungle. I could get excited about the hedgehogs and guinea pig disease so maybe I’ll think about updating this weekend.

Or maybe not! Paradox has just released Surviving Mars and it is instantly addictive, it’s only been out for a day or two but already I am an anxious mess, constantly worrying about the welfare of my fledgling colony. And on top of that there’s always stuff needs doing in Springfield. Cities Skylines is city building that SimCity promised but couldn’t deliver, it came about from the early success of Cities in Motion and I think it also owes a great deal of its success to the failure of SimCity, it’s taken me full circle anyway!

I’ve got to check in on the martians, I’ve been away for too long already! So I guess Dag Dag for now anyway.

Cats & Dogs made me sad…

I’d lost interest in the game and had to update twice in the week leading up to the Cats & Dogs release. But it was during that week while watching the live streams that I started to see just how cool the new EP would be. I’d pre-ordered anyway when the EP was first announced and for a while I didn’t think I would even be bothered to install it.

But I was so impressed with the 2nd of the updates and all the fixes that I fired up the game again, I love the new roof styles and decided to rebuild the Landgraab Castle, and prepare other lots for the arrival of pets, because by that stage I was very excited! I can’t remember all the fixes that came with the patch, but the one that pleased me the most was that played Sims would no longer busk autonomously, therefore they wouldn’t be carrying around hundreds of guitars and violins in their inventories. I really appreciate the work that goes into providing new content and patching the game, and it was running so smoothly, and enjoyably again I couldn’t wait for the release.

Luckily I was rebuilding the castle in a vanilla game with my legacy game saved elsewhere, otherwise I probably would have fallen foul of the relationship glitch. But as it happened I was lucky and when I reloaded the legacy game after installing the 3rd update everything was still good. Then I started filling the households with cats and dogs… then I got sad 😦
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Billie the boxer and Bob my Old english Sheepdog both died earlier this summer. Losing two beautiful, faithful doggies so close together literally tore me apart. And seeing them so perfectly recreated in a make believe world actually made the hurt start up again.

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Tyson the Bullmastiff, my partner called him by his proper name (Rudy), but I called him Tyson because it sounded butcher, and he was a big, cool, butch doggie. He’s another gone but not forgotten. Here he shows the incredibly expressive animations that make them so lifelike. He’s also demonstrating a teeny bug that might just become a teeny bit irritating. Seems like every time I change households their dog needs a bath!

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Betsan and Idris, both beautifully rendered and both seem to have the right characteristics. Although, even though I did max out their weight and muscles in CAS, they both turned out a little light-weight! Betsan was a fawn coloured English Mastiff, she was never very tall but she was enormously bulky, so it’s actually quite good to see her looking so trim in game. Idris on the other hand was a massive, dark brindle Harlequin Mastiff, there’s no way the game could replicate just how huge those boys grow to, but it has totally nailed the colouring and the superior way of looking they have with that haughty expression.

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Spike my little Yorkshire Terrier, another sadly gone but never forgotten. Pooped after taking a leak, I need to go back to CAS and change his traits because he was never still long enough to sleep, and never outdoors! I should also look into attiring him properly, I’ve actually kept one of Spikey’s little parka coats because I can’t bear to part with it.

It’s not all sad news though! And the game really does deliver with the bonding and training exercises. And that new town with the harbour and lighthouse is extraordinarily good. And there’s cats 🙂

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Anyone foolish enough to visit our house (see below!) will meet Alfie 🙂 He’s a huge, bundle that likes to be carried on the hip like a massive monkey or a fur covered baby. Everyone loves Alfie, and the game exceeds all expectations with the rendering and animations of their cats. I also like the way they can scratch at the furniture without causing lasting damage! And the automatic litter tray works just like the real life machines. I haven’t tried the robot vac yet, but I have one in real life and I’ve never managed to get a cat to ride on it, so I can’t wait to see that in action.

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The reason why some (most) people visit our house at the moment – and why they all seem to leave near exhausted. Cameron and Mitchell, our two piglet siblings. They’re a pair of French Bulldogs and the game has rendered them perfectly too, they’re as adorable and cute, and as frantic and annoying as in real life! Looking at the screenshot Mitchell is showing the ‘needs a bath glitch’. Honestly if you change households too quickly you could end up in a constant wash cycle!

I did have to revisit CAS with those two, because I was so wrapped up in getting their colouring right I totally forgot to check their sexes. It was only in the game when I noticed that they were falling in love that I realised that poor little Cameron had been created as a girl, so I had to fix that quickly before anything alarming happened.

To summarise, the game animations, characteristics and behaviour of the individual breeds is stunning. The gameplay involved with training and caring for their pets is totally absorbing and I can’t imagine that getting dull anytime soon – I think having so many different pets in so many different households should ensure that the goals and challenges aren’t so easy to ace. And I guess the only thing left to say is I am not that sad really, seeing beloved pets (whether alive or sadly those that have died) rendered so perfectly in a game of eternal sun drenched happiness is good – no better than that, it’s perfect 🙂 I just hope the golden poop is worthwhile, because I am not sure I’ll ever get used to seeing Sims pocket the poops they scoop!


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So I am still plodding along with the vampire slayer story, not one part of it has been enjoyable! Although the enhanced graphics and animations make it look pretty cool the slayer could not cure any vampires and it was exhausting 😦

Eventually I figured out the fledgling vampires could not be cured, so I cheated up their rank. Easily done for neighbourhood vamps, but it meant building somewhere for the homeless townies to nest, then I was able to cheat their skills to a level so they could be cured too.

  • stats.set_stat rankedStatistic_Occult_VampireXP 202 – Become a Minor Vampire
  • stats.set_stat rankedStatistic_Occult_VampireXP 630 – Become a Prime Vampire
  • stats.set_stat rankedStatistic_Occult_VampireXP 1058 – Become a Master Vampire

I had the slayer make the cure cocktail and set him loose in their world to find prey, that’s when the frustration really kicked in. He never had the option to throw the cure, only ever to slay the vampire – now I know that both options should achieve the same result, but in his case it just meant lots and lots of fighting. And as the cure is only good for one night it was nine hours of solid fighting! I don’t have any screen shots but it’s very well animated, I especially like it when the vamp drops the slayer to the floor, and he’s kneeling and gasping for breath – extremely well put together.

Even so still not achieving what I wanted! So the slayer gave up, back at his home lot to tend his garden and wait for the Plasma Fruit tree to produce harvestables (takes forever!) then make another cocktail, then go out and find his vamp again.

This time he traveled with his team, I have added Buffy, Xander, Willow (she’s my favourite because the insane trait plays out so well!) and Cordelia to his household.
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Still not going to plan! Buffy and Xander both have Bro traits, so they were stood chilling and high fiving each other while the slayer fired off insults and threats in an attempt to rattle the vamp, she lost interest however and went indoors to sink her teeth into her son’s boyfriend!
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Then the fighting started again!! They were all over the house, fighting continuously until the vampire cure only had a couple of minutes of goodness left before it spoiled. Yet no matter how many times the slayer attempted to slay the vamp she had him beat. Eventually I dragged the cure from his inventory,
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and had Buffy put it in her inventory, then I had Buffy throw out a couple of well aimed insults and almost immediately the ‘Throw cure’ action popped up and she sloshed it all over the vamp, who was then cured.

The vampire is really sad to be cured, but once Buffy had apologised! and they’d all sat down for a long chat, the cured vampire went to bed and the slayer group went home.

I think the reason why the original slayer couldn’t cure or destroy the vampire is because he has the noncommittal trait. Maybe that makes it so he doesn’t care enough!

Ultimate Vampire Cure ++ by Séri @ MTS looks like something worth trying, cuts out the time needed to harvest the ingredients and doesn’t spoil in their inventory.

Nope the biting still doesn’t make sense

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OK so I wandered off for a while! I was struggling to find a reason for buying the toddler stuff pack, and eventually I thought I may as well because I liked the floor cushions, and I liked the little cooler on a cart, more than anything I really liked the director chairs.

I paid my money and while I was waiting for the downloaded content I started planning the changes I was going to make to the vacation world, I love the textures of the existing wooden card table and I was genuinely (foolishly!) over excited at putting old school, camp chairs around it – I am of that age and country where those folding chairs traditionally used for outdoor eating would be carried in the car for days out by the seaside – that’s my nostalgic memories anyway. Look at old photos of desert campaigns or safari expeditions and you’ll see old familiar folding canvas chairs. I love them, and now they’re almost impossible to get hold of.

So I Loaded the game up and found that they’re ‘Living’ chairs!!! They won’t work with the games or chess tables, not even with a desk 😦

I felt cheated! I was overwhelmed with irrational anger – I don’t like toddlers, and the big clunky play sets didn’t appeal so I quit for a while. Of course news of the forthcoming Cats & Dogs stuff drew me back into the virtual world, and again I am over excited! When it was announced I thought it would be as lame as TS3 with playable animals, but then I started reading the blog updates, and realised that wouldn’t be the case, they’re going to be better looking than TS3 and with better autonomy than TS2, and with foxes too 🙂

Then came an update with a texture fix for the ball pit – to be honest I wasn’t that bothered by the original – I wasn’t using it and I didn’t care either way. I had seen that someone had modded it with something like a trillion polygons which made me laugh – although not at the creator – that must have taken a lot of time and effort. I was laughing because the devs had got it so wrong again. They frustrate the players so much that someone felt the need to remake the object and others felt the need to download graphic card busting custom content in order to get their game right. It made me think about the director/deck chair again, it’s aimed at the toddler age group but in reality a toddler would never be able to sit on one, a clumsy toddling infant would pull it on top of himself if he even tried to climb onto it. And that made me laugh again, foolishly buying into something I didn’t want because of one ‘virtual’ item that didn’t work (as I wanted). Honestly LOL!
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Then I read a discussion on Twitter about bathing ghost dogs, somebody wanted their Sim to be able to do it, and a dev commented saying they’d had lots of discussion about it in the office but would it even be necessary… 

It made me think, sometimes the players can be wrong too – who knows maybe sometime in the future my favourite garden chairs will be recategorised as dining chairs, and then I’ll be laughing. Until then there’s always CC 🙂
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It’s amazing what an update can do! It must be like the electrical surge during the ad breaks in a royal wedding when the entire nation makes tea at the same time. I wonder if the tech team at EA recognise increased player activity after an update, and worry when they see numbers drop at all other times…

Still not getting the biting. I built a vampire lounge and gave it the vampire nexus lot trait, because I want somewhere for vampires to hang out so my vampire hunters can find them easily. OK so I was playing during the daytime and the only vamp in the building was the one I was playing, but I did that because I wanted to see how many folks he could bite, the irritating thing for me is how the other Sims react to a blood sucking vampire. Why do they get so upset? They shouldn’t even be there!

I like the lot though, I took inspiration from a ruined cafe I downloaded from the gallery and built a labyrinth of play rooms underneath it. There’s also a swampy pool out back for late night skinny dips, and I’ll get them to plant the garden so they can make the vampire cocktails.

Building My way

Suddenly I am a perfectionist, or just foolishly over confident all of a sudden! I had to rebuild the apartment block because it irritated me too much. I am a lot happier with this version, not just because it’s facing the correct way, but also because the Sims move around it so quickly now.

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There is a CC free version available on the gallery. Hope it works for you, let me know if there are problems – don’t forget to place using MOO, enjoy 🙂

So that’s the apartment building sorted, I am not going to mess with it anymore! I am actually enjoying this building lark and sad to see there are no more empty lots, but there is one in Newcrest that I am not 100% happy with. I downloaded it from the gallery a while back and messed with it. Now I am not sure whether the problem came with the house or whether it’s something I’ve done, but every so often a Sim will place an empty glass so that it hovers at head height above the table!

Back to the drawing board again! As this is the last building adventure I feel the need to show the a strange way of building I enjoy, I think it’s worthwhile for my stories.

I start from the bottom! I think it’s more about realism, than a bizarre perversion to make things more difficult than they need to be. But I’ve recently started building from a hole in the ground.

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So I have a test Sim in a game without mods, I use the bb.ignoregameplayunlocksentitlement cheat, so much so that I auto type it before anything else. Even in the builds that I am not planning to put a basement in, I still build the ground floor in the basement! In my mad world those are the foundations, and they could become useable basement rooms in the future. In this case I do want a basement flat for a butler.

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When I am happy with the layout of the basement, I concrete over the grass floor and close in the walls of the hole. Then I can start thinking about building above ground.

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Getting out of the basement and the virtual rubble and dust of framing the build is when I settle into the good stuff – decorating! Building can be a real challenge, for me I find the choice of windows the most frustrating because there’s still not a lot of choice to play with.

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Now I am getting into it, finally the house is built. Walls and floors are decorated. It’s time to fill test Sims needs, start to add furnishings and test everything!

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I love the way they move on the booth seating. For a Single Male available on the gallery, don’t forget use MOO to place, let me know if there are any problems. Enjoy 🙂

Almost there

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Given my current predilection for building! I thought I’d share this build story too. A while back Amber Simself married Malcolm Landgraab, they’ve got three kids but it’s Trent the teenage son that the real story centres on.

Malcolm is a hopeless villain, he just doesn’t have it in – especially as I removed the klepto trait – I think he’s going to change career, maybe go into politics next? Trent on the other hand has got mean traits and is smart enough to hack his grades and demand money from strangers. I am itching to age him up so he can get going, but I like him as a spotty teenager too much! Amber is a kind and gentle Sim that either doesn’t know or doesn’t care about what the others are doing, she’s in nursing and loves spending time with the kids.

(moan) Remember how addictive the Motion gaming mat was? That was fixed, only to increase the desire to craft knife blocks on the woodwork bench. Well now it looks as though that fix has led to an unending desire to play dolls with the kids! Of course it’s easily fixed by taking away the dolls house, but I like it when Amber plays with them, it looks cute. Even when she’s exhausted after a days work, she’ll get down on their level and play make believe. It’s not cool seeing hardened criminals, or stroppy teens playing dolls though! (/moan) On the subject of kneeling…
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I am still seeing Sims kneel to eat when they take food from the fridge, it happens very occasionally and the only other times I’ve seen it has been with the retail fridges. It’s not a game breaking glitch, because I think it looks quite cute.

Anyhoo, back to the story. Malcolm and family had been living in the Affluista Mansion, but I really don’t like that building. I’ve tried to redecorate and rebuild it but still don’t like it, and I don’t like how it looks on the map either. So I thought with Malcolm making slow progress in the criminal career, and young Trent snapping at his heels for his slice of the pie, they should really have a home more fitting their lifestyle.

Way back in the mists of time, Amber had grown up in a castle that Gianni Simself had bought when he made his first million, and I loved that castle. It would have been great for story progression if I could have dropped it down into the game again, only this time with one of Gianni’s offspring living there. But, I didn’t save a copy to my library (or if I did I’ve since deleted it!), the builder has deleted the original from the gallery 😦 and I had a recent purge of my backup drive – so it’s not there either (doh!)

There are quite a few on the gallery, but they’re all too intricate for an easy game. Not meaning to sound derogatory, but I try to keep interior spaces simple so the Sims can move around quickly, and those beautifully crafted lots can have too many nooks and crannies, and places for Sims to get lost or stuck in. There was one that grabbed me because it was really simple, but when I dropped it into the game it covered the entire lot. So I took inspiration from theirs and built my own!
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Same but different too! I’ve made mine slightly smaller and the moat is swim-in-able.

The story goes something like this… There was once an unscrupulous property developer who had made a lot of money building shoddy homes in Oasis Springs. He made so much money so quickly he decided to build himself a castle. However, he was caught out by his own cost cutting shortfalls and eventually his cash ran out and he had to sell it unfinished. That was when Malcolm entered the fray, he snapped it up in a moment of showy bravado! Never giving a second thought as to how he was going to pay to live there, or even how he would afford to finish the project. Still his kids loved it, and Amber who was not unused to middle-aged men and their ‘King of the castle’ whims, actually (secretly) liked the bragging rights too. The biggest challenge is raising enough cash each week to pay the bills before the power is cut.
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The unfinished, partly decorated shell is on the gallery. If anyone wants to have a go at finishing the project. I am most proud of the library – I could enjoy that lifestyle 🙂

Don’t forget use MOO to place (stairs & supporting pillars) – I have no idea why they’ve made that so tricky. Big Blank Canvas

The Vampire Challenge

Is a bit of a side story that I dreamt up when raising toddlers was getting too much (first part is here). I had an idea to put a households of vampire slayers into one of the towns, Slipshod Mesquite in Bedrock Strait caught my eye because I liked the idea of  an underground warren beneath the old trailer. But it was a clumsy build and watching the Sims moving around the lot showed it up even more. But I liked the household, and I liked the story potential so I figured I needed to have another go at it.
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This time I thought about what I wanted to do, I think in real life that would be the planning stage – an unusual concept, but one that I’ve found makes life a lot less frustrating!

So, at the drawing board, I thought the underground living and work area needs to look planned, whereas before I had tagged on different rooms when needed and it just wasn’t working. I am a bit (LOT!) of a perfectionist in real life too, but it really gets in the way of playing the game when I don’t like the environment the Sims are in. (more about that in the next post) And even though I wanted to keep the ugly, old trailer on the lot – I have a weird kind of respect for the game developers, and don’t like making huge changes to the map – even so, the trailer was trash! And it had to go.
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I am not a huge fan of MOO, but it’s useful for landscaping and decor items, putting clumps of grass and wildflowers around the seating is doable (even without MOO) you just have to avoid blocking the front of the useable objects.

Another thing that had to go was Melvin’s girlfriend Ananya 😦 she was more into the science stuff anyway, and never really got into the slaying thing, so she has moved to Willow Creek to live with Clarke Spencer and his scientist mates. I did put the big, mystical-looking tree that leads to the Sylvan Glade hidden area down as somewhere they could go for ‘private’ time. I think as long as he’s got a tent he should be able to travel there with Ananya (hopefully!)
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Military cots, plastic garden furniture, big noisy generator and I love the breezeblock walls with my favourite scuffed lino. I really like this lot now, and even though it covers more area than previously it seems to be easier for them to get around. There’s only the two male Sims there now, but I think I’ll find them another female companion – only this time make her a bit tougher. And of course remove any ‘Active Traits’ because the basketball hoop is still driving me mad!
Interstellar Smuggler Outfit unlocked by Snaitf @ MTS

There is a CC free version available on the gallery. Hope it works for you, let me know if there are problems – don’t forget to place using MOO, enjoy 🙂

I’ve found another alternative to actually playing the game

One so bizarre I don’t even recognise myself!

“Hey, who are you playing on my computer?”

“What? Not me, no-one playing here… just an old obsessive gamer with a compulsive desire to change things”

“Oh well that’s alright then”

“Why won’t someone tell me to stop? …I need help …hello?”

“helloooo, anyone?”

So I spent a couple of weeks building stuff, probably the most compulsive aspects of the game. It starts out well enough, but before you know it you’ve spent six hours straight trying to put together a couple of artsy looking boxes, and then after shutting the computer down for a well earned break (for the computer!) you find yourself rushing back because you’ve had a flash of inspiration, and may have figured out a solution to the problem that led you to shut it down in the first place.

But I am not very good at building and I get bored easily, which is not such a bad thing after all.
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This time after finding more random Sims living alone, I decided to bring them all together in a house share again. Only this time I did what I said I didn’t want to do last time, and I built them a tower block! Not only does it look ugly, it’s also facing the wrong way! I was so wrapped up in decorating their individual boxes that I built the balconies on the wrong side and not overlooking the lake behind them 😦
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I am trying to limit the amount of CC in my game because I am genuinely excited about the pets EP, when ever that comes around. So I have no custom chairs, sofas, beds or any kind of surface that a pet might interact with. But, there are three CC items that I just have to have.


So it’s got nothing to do with this build, but features in every Sim household anyway. LuumiaSims body hairs (now version 5) is awesome cool 🙂

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So that’s me done with building now, that was the last of the empty lots in Newcrest. It’s not perfect but it will do…

While I was playing this household, one of the Sims woke up with a need to mop up puddles, I followed him because I thought the stupid Sim was going to try and mop the garden again (they can actually do that now, mop the terrain that is). But he didn’t he ran along the sidewalk to the little park nearby and started cleaning up some horrible child’s mess. By the time he got back to his own ‘apartment’ he was exhausted. But that made me check the park from time to time when I am playing, that’s when I noticed this creepy figure.
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OK so he doesn’t look that scary, especially in the daylight surrounded by bright colours. But he’s Count Vladislaus Straud’s side kick, I think Stephen King called them ghouls, and he is supposed to be Straker to the Counts Kurt Barlow, if that makes sense. Yet looking at him in the cheery daylight he’s anything but undead, and totally unthreatening even though he’s apparently loitering in a playground.

And that led me back to the manage households tab again, judging by the amount of squeaky voiced male teens I found it had obviously been a long time since my last godly intervention.

Normally I will spend a couple of hours every month or so making changes to the homeless townies, adding husbands and wives, or children and toddlers. Sometimes I age up a couple to keep them in the story, other times I turn off active households so they’ll age up and die in the background.

This time around it became obsessive, I have literally spent the entire weekend moderating the families. I’ve added loads of toddlers and kids, given almost all the single Sims a partner. I never make changes to the random Sims generated, I just keep pressing the randomizer until I get the one I want, which creates some really unusual pairings. For instance there’s a big, butch body builder that I see training Sims at the gym, he’s a huge, muscular giant of a Sim and although he’s homeless I thought I’d give him a partner. So after flicking through the generated females and not finding any to suit I hit the male button and a slight, frail, fragile looking male Sim appeared with a pinched up face and a high pitched squeaky voice, it was too good to be true! I gave him high heels and silly walk and marked him up as a wife for the butch townie.

Then I noticed the guy who works in the coffee shop, he looked lonely and in need of a wife too…
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and he got super lucky 🙂 The screenshot is rubbish because her skin tone and eyes are gorgeous in real life! I had to give them a child after seeing how beautiful she was and the kid looks cool.

Pulling random Sims from the homeless bin adds so much to the game, I’ve set this family down in a house and turned off aging. I suppose he’s lost his job now that he’s a played Sim, but he’s gotta be grateful for having such a merciful god taking care of things. Although, one of the Sims that has moved into the new tower block with Dean Simself is Brayden Mireles, he’s one of the cool triplets and he’s cute! Those two (Brayden & Mrs coffee shop server) have got to hook up.
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It got so every time I fired up the game I would load a family then type in testingcheats on & cas.fulleditmode and go straight into household management! Where I started tweaking vampires, now they’ve all got pointy teeth and regular outfits when they’re not in their dark form, and I’ve made some wardrobe adjustments to their alter egos too.

Then I finally reached the point of quitting when I would normally cull a load of hefty looking aliens, because they irritate me so much. But one thing that’s puzzled me since they were introduced led me into another scenario. And that is I’ve never seen an alien in human disguise in my game, they’re always around and other Sims always react, and I keep seeing notifications that a Sim has seen through their cunning disguise, but they never have been disguised. So I started fiddling about with them too, now I know it’s possible to slim them down and most of them had attractive human forms already.

The issue is that they’re dropped into the game in alien form, and there’s no way of changing the disguise of the npc aliens. Yet it’s so simple to do with a played alien, makes me wonder who dreamt up that scenario, and wouldn’t it be better for the game if the aliens arrived from Sixam dressed as humans until they were discovered to be an alien. That way makes more sense to me, especially as there’s gameplay objects already in the game to detect aliens.
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Much more entertaining EA, he hasn’t got a clue who or what he’s chatting up, but she’s got him figured.

Now I WANT! to get back to playing the game, I feel like the stage is set for some lively mix ups and I am looking forward to seeing them play out.

Finlay leaves home

He’s gone to live with the cool geeks, but it’s a struggle to maintain their nerdiness! Is it wrong to complain that my Sims are so (too) friendly? All I want is for them to live with their loner, geek, clumsy and anti-social traits and all they want is to spread the love and hang out together…

Anyway, it started with Ralph Mireles, one of the triplets originally dreamt up to be live in servants at the Simself’s penthouse. But then came the butlers, and then I didn’t enjoy playing the penthouse lots very much, and actually the triplets turned out to be really cool Sims on their own. Ralph was the first to leave home and moved into 19 Culpepper House (the ‘needs tlc’ apartment). It was fun for a while but eventually the rats, roaches and iffy green stink just became really boring. He was learning to be an astronaut so didn’t have the time or skill to fix problems, and the landlord was useless too. So he moved into 17 Culpepper House the one with gremlins!! And that wasn’t any fun at all 😦

Here’s a thought EA, why not enable those starter flats and fixer-uppers to be fixed up. If for instance the tenant regularly put rat/roach poison down why not make the vermin appear less often, and then possibly never again. And why not enable a ghostbuster service NPC to clear away ghosts too. Introducing real life challenges might just make the game more dare I say intuitive. Certainly having the Sims work hard and save to climb the social ladder will be much more immersive than numbing players with repetitive animations that get boring very quickly.

So, I have a cool Sim, Ralph, and he’s got cool siblings. It’s his mother you’ll see in a lot of the venue screenshots, the one with the big boobs and cowboy hat. Honestly she came like that and she’s the most fun at a party. He’s also got loads of mates from all the time he spends at the gym, loads of love interest. Again though it was the game that hooked him up with a really cute, though soppy guy.

Most of the time hanging out in the apartment, his bf had a key 🙂 And going on dates or meeting up with friends in the venues was good, so I like the idea of apartments. And I like San Myshuno too, the background buzz and street food is very cool, I just didn’t like how locked in it became. I know it’s possible to move between apartments, and that if you’ve the patience to persevere it is doable to buy the Sims way up the property ladder (fill the apartments with high end furnishings, then sell everything to buy another empty shell), but I still think my idea is best!

Cool Sim + Liking apartment living = Learning to build!

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Which is not so easy after all as the game doesn’t provide an apartment lot type (yet?) and there’s no way of creating public/residential areas or level skip markers like TS3. However I have one apartment type lot already in the game already (Roomies Reimagined) and I enjoy playing that household, so I decided to have a go! And built a couple of boxes 🙂

So I am not a great builder and there’s much better available on the gallery, but for my first attempt – and I set myself some very challenging design challenges with this build – I am pleased with the results.

First off it’s in Newcrest which in my game is a fairly low level town, and the apartment building is surrounded by small, modern houses so creating a huge, towering box would look odd, so my first challenge was to build the entrance/kitchen/dining area in a basement. Warning! Don’t try that unless you’ve got a driving need for frustration in your gaming lifestyle, because you cannot set a front door in a basement 😦 I already had plans to get around that, but one thing that might work (although not for me in this situation) is set a staircase away from a wall so that it forms a landing, then fence off that landing and I think you can set the gate as being the front door.
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Basement level contains kitchen and small cloakroom.
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Living room and access to the garden is on the next level.

There’s also another building, that I am calling a bunkhouse on ground level. My original plan was to have young professionals in the three ‘apartments’ and then add random townies to live short term in the bunkhouse. That’s what I originally intended, but the first two random Sims I introduced are so cool (and from legacy families) that they’ve become permanent!
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The bunkhouse has a games room, communal kitchen and dining area and a large empty space that I’d like to use as a laundry/garage. Upstairs there are two large bedrooms with camp beds and two basic bathrooms. Or there was until I moved in the two visiting Sims who were too cool to purge, I’ve remodelled one of the rooms so it’s more comfortable for them 🙂
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Finlay Simself sharing a room with his BFF Max Villareal. He’s all grown up now and looking for work, I hope that’s what he’s doing!
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Loads of hangout and group activities outside. I’ve set the only door to the bunkhouse as the front door, and all the other ground floor and basement doors are locked to everyone but family. But I have also locked all the bathroom doors so each of the ‘apartment’ living Sims can have their own private bathroom. That leads to another bug! Locking the ‘apartment’ doors for just one or two (if there was a couple) Sims, meant that they couldn’t invite a partner to sleep over because once the doors were unlocked for their partner, then the rest of the household could crash their privacy. Keeping the doors unlocked and having a locked bathroom ensuite to their bedroom (with claimed beds) means that other household members are unlikely to spend time in each others bedrooms – unless it’s good for the story 🙂

So there are beds available in the bunkhouse for occasional/frequent/OMG! use, which is kind of cool (for the guys anyway) because they don’t have to wake up next to their beer goggle conquests (if they could get drunk) and slip away in the night to their own bed. Or they could if it weren’t for the bed claiming bug! Woohoo in any bed other than their own removes their claim from their own bed. It’s not a game breaker, but it means I have to make them claim their original bed back every time, and I like to play with as little direction as possible. I love the way the game creates characters, and opens opportunities but there’s always some little snag that stops it from being laugh out loud cool. It would be awesome if the lads could invite a date over, go do their thing in the bunkhouse then slip quietly away to sleep in their own beds without me having to intervene. Anyway…
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The bedrooms are on the top floor with access to a private balcony. Here I’ve broken the rule about keeping the bedrooms private because there’s a yoga mat on the balcony, there’s also a running machine in one of the other bedrooms. I’ve put them in their bedrooms because I didn’t want to build a home gym, because I think that’s a bit lame. I much prefer to have the Sims travel to a town gym, but in real life a young guy living alone (sort of) and working long hours might have exercise equipment at home too – I really love the way they have workout video on the TV now too, that’s very cool. So very occasionally one of the other household Sims will want to use the running machine or yoga mat in the others apartment, I’ll only stop it from happening if it’s going to disturb a sleeping Sim.

So Finlay has left home, he’s started in the entertainment business but I am not it’s such a good choice though, his best friend Max is in the sports career which might have been better. Although to be fair he doesn’t need to work because his father can drop off bags of cash anytime he ever needs it
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Stacks of Cash by plasticbox at MTS works a charm for transferring funds between households.

Other news from the Simself household, Gianni and Mrs Simself are living in separate houses! It’s not doom and gloom though, although they do say they’re ‘doing it for the kids!’ Bringing up two toddlers was too much, so they’ve separated with each looking after one toddler. Then I think it won’t be long before they’re aged up and become independant. There will be more babies in the future, especially as it seems future content will centre around the toddler life stage. But for now, I think they’re good for a break.

Thanks to those that have already downloaded, I hope it’s working for you – download the updated version when it’s ready, it looks better and it’s properly finished!