Posted by skyline7284 (497 posts) -

Twelve and a half years ago The Sims was launched on PC, and to this day the series has produced 3 core titles, 16 expansion packs, and 17 additional "Stuff Packs" along with countless spinoff series (The Sims Medieval, The Sims: Life Stories , The Sims: Bustin' Out , etc.). The Sims has transformed to what was originally intended to be an architecture simulation to becoming a full size life and fantasy simulation. Every new addition has changed the way the game is played, and every addition has added new ways to experiment with the world in which the player becomes a part of. The Sims is essence has become a shell in which players can go to college, take vacations, become vampires, astronauts, superstars, all within the context of a simulation.

I used to be deeply embedded in the Sims community. Every new expansion I would buy day and date with the release. I absorbed every piece of content that Electronic Arts and Maxis Software would put out. As of recently however, that has changed. The Sims as a franchise no longer features the endless abyss of content and choices that it once did. The Sims used to explore and challenge the depths of the player's creativity. Each addition used to add an exciting new twist to the classic Sims gameplay. Whether it was adding pets for the first time in The Sims: Unleashed or letting you go to the beach in The Sims: Vacation all of the ideas added a fresh new spin on the existing gameplay. Recently the developers have become safe, and to be quite frank, boring.

The original Sims gave the player full control of a single family, there was no aging, no open world to explore, no cars to drive around, it was simply a simulation of life. Each addition since has added various systems and features that make the game richer. The core Sims experience had the core mood meters: Fun, Energy, Hunger, Bladder, etc. and that was basically it. There were basic relationship interactions and social meters, but nothing overly complex. Over the years the sheer amount of meters and bars has expanded to the point of absurdity. There are lifetime goal meters, aspiration meters, skill meters, ability meters, financial meters, even temperature meters. Over the course of twelve years The Sims has changed from being a simple experiment to becoming a massive sandbox full of complex systems.

The reason I stopped playing the Sims is because there is a point in which the developers got lazy with their additions to the series. The Sims used to be about giving the player the tools to create, and letting the player mess around with this neat sandbox. Recently the game has become so bizarrely structured, and linear. The game sets up a certain amount of paths for the player to go down, and there's not really much else. Sure you can still create houses, and outfits, and furniture. You can create anything you could possibly want. The fun of creating however is completely sucked dry by the linear style of gameplay. If the original Sims was about creating your own story, the current Sims is about replicating somebody else's story.

The Sims used to be at the forefront of PC gaming, it showcased the creativity of a budding industry. Now The Sims has become a commercial dumping ground. What used to be a series about individualism, and creativity has become a series about commercialism and greed. Things like The Sims 2: IKEA Home Stuff , and The Sims 3: Katy Perry Sweet Treats just go to show that creativity has left the series, and to be quite frank moved elsewhere. Players used to wait six months to a year for new content to play around with, now there's new content on the online store, where players can buy a new neighborhood for (no joke) $37 a piece. Prices for expansion packs were raised from a fairly normal price of $30 to an expensive $40 while stripping out much of the content along the way. The Sims: Unleashed came with about 120 brand new objects along with a substantial amount of new features. Now the player is lucky if an expansion pack comes with 50 or 60 items, and very lackluster features.

As I sit here writing this blog post I feel ashamed at how much money I spent on the franchise. The Sims is something that not only took over my life, but my wallet as well. I feel ashamed at the amount of money I spent only to get burned in the end. The Sims is a franchise that started out as a fresh approach to the PC game we all knew and loved. The Sims started out as something in stark contrast to the shooters and strategy games of the time. Now it's just a corporate slave and has sold out both itself and it's players. The Sims used to be something that I felt proud to play, and be a part of. Now i just feel ashamed and used by the same game.

#1 Posted by skyline7284 (497 posts) -

Twelve and a half years ago The Sims was launched on PC, and to this day the series has produced 3 core titles, 16 expansion packs, and 17 additional "Stuff Packs" along with countless spinoff series (The Sims Medieval, The Sims: Life Stories , The Sims: Bustin' Out , etc.). The Sims has transformed to what was originally intended to be an architecture simulation to becoming a full size life and fantasy simulation. Every new addition has changed the way the game is played, and every addition has added new ways to experiment with the world in which the player becomes a part of. The Sims is essence has become a shell in which players can go to college, take vacations, become vampires, astronauts, superstars, all within the context of a simulation.

I used to be deeply embedded in the Sims community. Every new expansion I would buy day and date with the release. I absorbed every piece of content that Electronic Arts and Maxis Software would put out. As of recently however, that has changed. The Sims as a franchise no longer features the endless abyss of content and choices that it once did. The Sims used to explore and challenge the depths of the player's creativity. Each addition used to add an exciting new twist to the classic Sims gameplay. Whether it was adding pets for the first time in The Sims: Unleashed or letting you go to the beach in The Sims: Vacation all of the ideas added a fresh new spin on the existing gameplay. Recently the developers have become safe, and to be quite frank, boring.

The original Sims gave the player full control of a single family, there was no aging, no open world to explore, no cars to drive around, it was simply a simulation of life. Each addition since has added various systems and features that make the game richer. The core Sims experience had the core mood meters: Fun, Energy, Hunger, Bladder, etc. and that was basically it. There were basic relationship interactions and social meters, but nothing overly complex. Over the years the sheer amount of meters and bars has expanded to the point of absurdity. There are lifetime goal meters, aspiration meters, skill meters, ability meters, financial meters, even temperature meters. Over the course of twelve years The Sims has changed from being a simple experiment to becoming a massive sandbox full of complex systems.

The reason I stopped playing the Sims is because there is a point in which the developers got lazy with their additions to the series. The Sims used to be about giving the player the tools to create, and letting the player mess around with this neat sandbox. Recently the game has become so bizarrely structured, and linear. The game sets up a certain amount of paths for the player to go down, and there's not really much else. Sure you can still create houses, and outfits, and furniture. You can create anything you could possibly want. The fun of creating however is completely sucked dry by the linear style of gameplay. If the original Sims was about creating your own story, the current Sims is about replicating somebody else's story.

The Sims used to be at the forefront of PC gaming, it showcased the creativity of a budding industry. Now The Sims has become a commercial dumping ground. What used to be a series about individualism, and creativity has become a series about commercialism and greed. Things like The Sims 2: IKEA Home Stuff , and The Sims 3: Katy Perry Sweet Treats just go to show that creativity has left the series, and to be quite frank moved elsewhere. Players used to wait six months to a year for new content to play around with, now there's new content on the online store, where players can buy a new neighborhood for (no joke) $37 a piece. Prices for expansion packs were raised from a fairly normal price of $30 to an expensive $40 while stripping out much of the content along the way. The Sims: Unleashed came with about 120 brand new objects along with a substantial amount of new features. Now the player is lucky if an expansion pack comes with 50 or 60 items, and very lackluster features.

As I sit here writing this blog post I feel ashamed at how much money I spent on the franchise. The Sims is something that not only took over my life, but my wallet as well. I feel ashamed at the amount of money I spent only to get burned in the end. The Sims is a franchise that started out as a fresh approach to the PC game we all knew and loved. The Sims started out as something in stark contrast to the shooters and strategy games of the time. Now it's just a corporate slave and has sold out both itself and it's players. The Sims used to be something that I felt proud to play, and be a part of. Now i just feel ashamed and used by the same game.

#2 Posted by Tylea002 (2291 posts) -

Alright, first things first, don't feel ashamed for spending any time enjoying anything. Unless it's like immoral, but it's not, it's the sims! The sims was (and is) a good game, made by talented people. Even if it just doesn't kick it for you anymore, and the whole microtransaction and rehash thing makes you feel a tad alienated, and you want to move on and stop giving them your money, that is a totally cool way to proceed, but don't taint all the fun you've had before hand. The Sims was revolutionary, and even if it's not anymore, it gave you a fuckton of time and content before hand - ain't no reason to be ashamed of that.

#3 Posted by Sackmanjones (4609 posts) -

Hey I still fucking love The Sims. I will probably buy the next core game when it's out too. Also post above is right, you don't need to be ashamed

#4 Posted by Xymox (2025 posts) -

I loved the sims. All 7 of them, even the stupid magic one. And then Sims 2 came around and I was like "Uuh... wait a second...". It's pretty clear what they want with that franchise, and somewhere along the line it became less about "videogame" and more about cashing in. So I hear ya brah. But the realization that it's "become a series about commercialism and greed" struck me much earlier than the release of "Katy Perry Sweet Treats".

#5 Posted by Zenogiasu (192 posts) -

The Sims 3: Katy Perry Sweet Treats makes me really sad. The Sims has been a difficult series to watch progress, and I feel for you as a fan. You should e-mail this to Maxis Software. It might never get read, but this is the sort of stuff they should be hearing.

#6 Posted by Ravenlight (8033 posts) -

I've never understood the lasting appeal of The Sims. My roommate is crazy into the series but I get bored after a few hours. What keeps you guys hooked?

#7 Posted by Zenogiasu (192 posts) -

@Ravenlight: I've never really understood it myself, to be honest. The only people that I know who play it tend to be extremely casual gamers who will only commit themselves to one title at a time. They don't know much about games, so they find all the freedom and non-linearity to be pretty exceptional. It's a game that's really easy to pick up, and you can play it however you like.

But me? After 45 minutes, I just force my awful cook of a Sim to make something on the stove while I surround him with highly-flammable wicker chairs.

#8 Posted by PillClinton (3284 posts) -

@Ravenlight said:

I've never understood the lasting appeal of The Sims. My roommate is crazy into the series but I get bored after a few hours. What keeps you guys hooked?

Same here. My sister's been crazy into it since Sims 1, and it's literally the only game franchise she plays. I try to tell her there's a whole world of amazing games out there beyond the boring, repetitive realm of The Sims, but it's useless. I'm quite baffled by it.

#9 Posted by BitterAlmond (400 posts) -

Hear hear! The Sims 3 was a disaster.

The one thing is the complaint about the "normal to expensive" jump from $30 to $40. Inflation happens, and 10 years ago, $30 was worth more. Still, you're right: $40 really is too much. I'd have preferred to pay $20 back in the day and $30 now.

#10 Posted by mandude (2667 posts) -

I must have spent upwards of 200 hours luring people into my dungeon with turkeys and then sealing up the door once they were inside. At night, their screams would be my lullaby. By day, my muse.

The Sims 2 abandoned all the 'quirk' as it were, and murdering my virtual neighbours lost its appeal. I don't want my Sim to have to live its life. I want to destroy others!

#11 Posted by Draxyle (1719 posts) -

What they've done to The Sim's 3 is beyond disgusting. I don't know how many hundreds of dollars of DLC were on the store, day one, but it was beyond acceptable for a game already paltry with content on release. Can't believe they have the nerve to charge full price for a game with a Zynga business model.

That's EA though. They're not going to have many repeat customers.