Girl Gamers UK had the chance to play The Sims 3 Generations on the 14th April in London.
This is the fourth expansion pack for The Sims 3 life simulation game by EA. The PC game is set up in Sunset Valley, which was founded by the Goth family and built up by the Landgrabbs. It’s a beautiful and peaceful place, until the Altos family arrive.
The fourth expansion pack preview saved game we played sends players into a world where you can create a family, or decide to become a teenager or any one of a pre-created family in a 1950’s suburban home. The life of a teenager is filled with the growing pains of a rebellious adolescent who is trying to find his/her way in a confusing world. If you become a teenager you’ll be able to go on romantic dates and form relationships, when you’re not too busy fighting the authority of your parents. You may even try and woo the love of your life, so you can take him/her on romantic dates and maybe even marry them later on down the line.
Teenagers are renowned for getting into all sorts of mischief and trouble, and in The Sims 3 Generations teenagers are no different. All of your actions have repercussions. Teenager’s lives can now revolve around pulling pranks and setting booby traps on unsuspecting neighbours, family and friends. On a residential lot, child and teen Sims can set traps on different household objects and appliances. There are boundaries and limits to every teenager’s life. Some of these will be restricting, which often sends an adolescent onto a path of destructive and rebellious behaviour. Parents can ban you from playing with your favourite toy, putting you on a timeout or even ground you, so be warned. As you know, teenagers don’t like to be subjected to staying in their rooms and frequently try to escape when their parents aren’t looking. Try this one out and see how far you get before you’re busted by the cops. Being a teenager is difficult at times with your folks being constantly on your back. For the most troublesome teenager, or child, the only option may involve being sent away to a facility such as boarding or military school.
Sims can attend prom for the first time and become a prom king or queen in the celebrations. If you’re lucky enough to throw a party, a limo will arrive and some strikingly good looking Sims greet you. On a momentous occasion such as becoming a prom king or queen, you’ll be able to capture a photo of your memorable day. This keepsake photo will be kept in your inventory for you to look at whenever you feel like reminiscing. Sims that get elected to the prom court will also receive a special object. All special occasions throughout your Sims life can be captured in a memory. This is kind of like a bookmark of special times in your life, such as meeting new friends, cooking a new meal or even starting a job. These memorable moments can be saved into your Sims scrapbook and then uploaded to FaceBook for you to share with your family and friends.
If you decide to take the role of an adult, you’ll need to find a place of residence with a limited supply of cash. Again from previous Sims games, you can choose from a furnished or unfurnished place. Once you’re comfortable in your new home, it’s time to find a job or professional career to pay for all those frequent household bills and fun days out. In my game, I chose to become an amateur baby-sitter in the Day Care profession, which took me a little by surprise.
Generally in the Sims games, I would seek employment and venture out to work on a daily basis. Toss those ideas out the window, because when you become a baby-sitter the whole neighbourhood arrives on your doorstep with young and innocent children. They look quite sweet and they will be in your care. Looks can be deceiving as once you say goodbye to the parents, those children become the kids of doom, or maybe that’s just my general opinion. As a baby-sitter you’ll deal with general day care, form friendships with children and have to handle emergencies. At first the children sit on the floor, innocent or almost happy until the parents leave. But once the parents leave, they will start crying and need to be fed or played with. Occasionally a thought bubble will appear over their heads with an odd sock inside, and this represents they need a clean diaper. Children need a vast amount of entertainment, so it will be your job to use the ‘attack the claw’ where you pick up a child and use a clawing motion to keep the child amused. In times of separation from their parents, a cuddle is needed for comfort and support through this difficult transition period.
Being a baby-sitter is not the easiest of jobs, because while you’re trying to juggle day to day life and your own needs, you’ll have babies crawling all over the floor, having screaming matches at each other and having tantrums when they aren’t given a toy. No wonder I stayed in the shower for so long. At the end of the day, the parents come and collect their children, you’ll get paid and everybody’s happy.
As a Sim you’ll also be able to create a variety of potions by using the Catalyst Chemistry Lab Station. This is where you can research formulas to make potions and discover new ones. Some of these potions include the ‘Ninja Vanish potion’ which teleports Sims home instantly, While the ‘ghost potion’ enables you to play on the other side, which I’m not going to reveal completely as I don’t want to spoil too much of the surprise for you. Sims who are adept in the logic skills can also mix potions into drinks. This creates a mysterious drink that looks like a glass of water, but causes any Sim who drinks it to undergo the same effects as the mixed potions. I tried experimenting several times which resulted in a few failed attempts with the lab blowing up in my face, leaving me walking around with a burnt look all over my body.
Whether you’re an adult or teenage Sim you’re going to need to travel with the usual items such as bicycles or something a little bit fancier such as the sports cars which can be very expensive. The Vistoco Speed Machine was priced at sixty thousand simoleons and the Ernato Berrati M8I Covert Edition was fifty thousand simoleons. You need a very well paid job to afford any of these. Sims can also have driving lessons, but don’t worry because you can’t actually crash the cars even if you wanted to.
As a child Sim you will be able to build your very own treehouse with a slide and create your own imaginary setting. So for instance, if you imagine you’re a pirate, images show up around the treehouse of pirates with some good ole pirate music to complete the setting. Maybe you’ll stand on the balcony keeping watch or spy on the neighbours.
The Sims 3 Generations allows you to broaden your imagination and with this new found skill you can also have your very own imaginary friend. When your Sim has a child, sometimes the newborn will receive a special toy in the mail and this will be their imaginary friend. Now only your Sim can see the ‘friend’ and no-one else. If someone is looking at you strange, it’s because they can’t visually see who or what you’re talking to. You get to see both sides of this scene. Imaginary friends can be turned into real Sims through various opportunities. It’s quite a fun prospect.
Sims can also for the very first time use a video camera. This gives you a Sim’s eye view of things going on in the Sims world. The recordings can be watched on any TV in the Sim’s town. Video capturing is useful for spying on your neighbours or capturing celebrations and special moments.
Late nights may involve bachelor and bachelorette nights where you can have wild parties until the early hours of the morning. These parties are only available to Sims who are currently engaged to another Sim and are not for the children. Such parties are always eventful and Sims may run into a fight, get ditched by their date or get denied a place on the dance floor.
If Sim life gets too much, you may undergo a midlife crisis on one of their birthdays. This is where your Sim will have a personal meltdown and you’ll need to complete special wishes to help them cling on to their youth and earn extra lifetime. There’s no penalty for avoiding the midlife crisis wishes, if you choose not to promise them. Be aware that if the pressure proves to be too much, you can see your Sim to the local hospital to get some much needed therapy and end their crisis early.
The Sims 3: Generations expansion pack is all about new traits, new events, youthful rebellion, nurturing and good old fashion fun with pranks and booby traps to keep the most mischievous Sim very busy for a long time to come. Packed with loads more content, your Sims, be they young or old, will be living busier and much more fulfilling lives.