Talk about milking it…

Since its release in 2000 The Sims legacy has expanded rapidly. Even though there have been several different sequels to the original games they have all sold millions of copies. The reason for this? Many people enjoy escaping into a virtual world where they can control a virtual character (or characters)

In the beginning the graphics were basic (it was the beginning of the 00’s after all). The characters you could chose from were not as detailed as the characters in the current legacy and there was no option to customise the outfit. It uses a combination of 3D and 2D grapics and the characters nowadays are completely 3D. Even though the player does control the Sim to some extent there are several options that the Sim won’t do unless instructed like paying bills or conceiving a child. Expansions packs were then released to enrich the game and give the Sims more locations to visit and more objects to use. Between 2001 and 2005 when the oroginal series was being developed there were 10 different expansions packs made.

Sims 2 was released in 2004 for Windows and the ported to Mac OS X in 2005. Eight expansion packs were released for this part of the legacy and nine stuff packs were released. In my opinion the stuff packs weren’t as good as the expansion packs because they often didn’t give you that many new objects. Although the graphics in Sims 2 were better than in the original Sims they were nowhere near as detailed as they are in Sims 3.

The reason that they have sold millions and millions of copies throughout the world is that many people have played the series from the beginning so they want to follow the series as the graphics and the options in the virtual world get better. Not only are there the main Sims legacy but there have also been many spin-offs such as Sims Life Stories and My Sims which was a Wii spinoff that was more aimed at building objects. More recently they have introduced SimsSocial which was a Facebook game. The Sims Social lets the user create their own customizable character. In this version, however, the player uses their character to interact with those of their Facebook friends.

I have played The Sims fron the start although I haven’t bought all the expansion packs simply because I didn’t have the money and some of the reviews for several of the other packs weren’t brilliant. The Sims 3 was my favourite part of The Sims legacy simply because there are so many things to do within the world such as become self-employed, learning a variety of skills etc. Everything is customisable from the clothes down to the objects. The introduction of Late Night meant that your Sim can become a celebrity and who wouldn’t want that?

Recently EA have gotten a bit greedy (well greedier than they already are) by releasing previews of Sims Supernatural which is set for release in September AND Sims Seasons which is being released in November. So they release previews of the an expansion before the last one has even been released? That’s just exploiting the series. The prices of these expansion packs are almost as much as the base game and some people are willing to pay full price for them (I’m not one of these people). A lot of these expansion packs start off being about £20-25 when they are initally released. I would much rather wait until they are cheaper because if you buy the base game and each expansion pack upon its release you will probably spend about £100 on them. All it is is EA just cashing in on a game legacy. It’s become more about the money that actually developing the game more via the expansion or stuff packs. Apart from the base game and the add ons the other way that EA makes even more money from this legacy is the Sims 3 online store. You have to pay to get coins which you can use on the store to add various objects to your game.

To me it seems that EA is making Sims 3 like the COD and Halo series of games because they are putting a lot of pressure on Maxis to develop all the expansion packs and they often release 2 or 3 a year. Apparently one expansion pack a year isn’t enough for EA


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