Flights of The Electribird

Through Games, Events and Multimedia


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Why Didn’t EA Think of this Before?

Electronic Arts has gotten a lot of complaints from fans of the games The Sims and The Sims 2 due to bugs and errors in both the base game and its expansion and stuff packs over the years. After all of the interviews I’ve read and watched for years on the Internet and in bonus discs, I’ve learned that the people who work on The Sims franchise don’t seem to have much time for anything else. I remember that one of the employees (a developer, I think) was using a huge thermos mug filled with tea or coffee to stay awake for work! It’s no wonder that there can be so many errors and bugs in the game if the people who work on it are too tired of exhaustion to notice them before deadline! That’s why I thought it was a great idea when I read about the event EA’s been hosting – The Sims 3 Creator’s Camp.

EA has held events like this before, but from what I can tell from the media, the Creator’s Camp seems much more grander than anything they’ve done before. Most of the major fansites (like GameSpot, who posted the video above) has been invited to attend and test out a nearly finished version of The Sims 3, which they could later on write about on their websites. Not only is this an excellent way for EA’s employees to cut some slack, this is also a great way for The Sims 3 to get some major publicity as well as a better quality as soon as the game’s ready for release. Game developers can sometimes miss out on things when they have to play the same game over and over again for months in search of flaws and fans all over the world, who’re so obsessed with The Sims’ franchise that they forget about their patience, can read about what the visitors have seen on the fansites and stay patient. More time to spare and less work for EA-employees and free game testers and major publicity for EA and The Sims 3. That’s a whole lot of flies in 1 whack!

After reading about delays for the game’s release, I going to assume that the fansite-people found plenty of stuff that needed to be fixed, but that’s just speculation from my side. But if I’m right, I don’t mind waiting another few months for The Sims 3. I’d rather spend my money on a perfect game than a buggy one that requires several patches to work properly.

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The Sims 3, I Wish to Own Thee…

The Sims 3 will hit the stores in a few months and I’m 1 of the few Sim-fanatics who can’t wait for that to happen. The more I read about it, the more I want it. For starters, they’ve added things that make the game seem more realistic and stuff that makes the sims seem more sentient. For starters, we can interfere more with the sims’ careers, like sucking up to the boss or do a specific task. Then we have the way the sims react to what we do around them. Let’s say the sim’s busy improving its cooking-skills. The player doesn’t wish to disturb the sim for such a simple task as to empty the trashcan and therefore decides to do it manually. If there’s a sim around to see the player do it, it will respond to that if the player doesn’t do it very often. I find this behavior very fascinating, because it makes me as a player more involved with the lives of my sims. In the prequels, the sims are aware of that the player exists and this you can tell by how they look towards you when they want something. In The Sims 2, the sims even react to the commands you give them sometimes. The Sims 3 takes that to another level, which could make the player feel more involved and connected with the sims. It does make me wonder how far Maxis (or EA’s Sims Division, as they’re called nowadays, I think) will take this feature. Will we eventually have contact with the sims or will they strictly treat us as casual “higher powers that be”, like they always do? I’m very comfortable with the second one, but I’ve always wondered what a sim would say to the one who controls its life…

I also like how everything can be customized to fit the style you want for your sims. No more picking what the game has to offer! One style or a blend of as many styles as you wish, the choice is yours! The style of what, you ask? We’re talking about patterns and colours on clothes, wallpaper, objects, floors and more! Even the colour of their eyes and hair can be changed into a variety of colours! I’m thinking of making a sim with orange eyes and purple, green, blue and pink hair. If that’s possible, I hope they made the same thing for the skin. We could make aliens!

There’s lots of cool stuff to do in this game and I can’t wait to try them all. I’m not sure how much of that stuff will actually be part of the finished product, but I’m very fond of what I’ve read about so far, both from the game designers and producers and the fansites. I can’t wait to see what they’ll mention next.