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Author Topic: Can someone give me a good review of Sims 3?  (Read 2940 times)
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aqua-sheep
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« on: July 24, 2009, 09:42:50 pm »

I'm considering getting Sims 3, but the only reviews i've found online are biased and overly positive. i want to know the good things and the bad things about TS3 before making such an investment of my computer's space. If you own Sims 3, please tell me about your experiences with it so I know whether it's worth buying. And if you don't have it, please don't write anything you've heard since I just want personal experiences.

thanks  Grin
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« Reply #1 on: July 24, 2009, 09:48:08 pm »

The only thing I don't like is the comfort & environment motives are gone.
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Chaavik
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« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2009, 07:00:15 am »

I do play Sims 3. There are good and bad points about the game that makes it worthwhile to consider and buy.

Good Points:

- Improved building tools

The building tools are really cool. You can drag a wall to make the room bigger or smaller instead of knocking the wall down and then making a new wall. You can actually build within one tile of the lot instead of two like in Sims 2 when you couldn't build a house one tile away from the edge.

- Improved coloring tools

The coloring tools are fun to use. You can actually customize your furniture, walls, floors, fixtures (lights, sink, etc), mail posts and garbage cans (the ones outside on the sidewalk). There is no limit to your imagination. You save a lot of space on your hard drive not downloading any recolors since you can create them yourselves.

- Gardening

This is the highlight of the game for me. More vegetables to collect and plant. Different fertilizers to use on the budding plants. Gardening opportunities are available at certain levels to make gardening worthwhile to do. I enjoyed this part of Sims 3 a lot because I can have a reason for a garden. In Sims 2, I still enjoy gardening, but there are no opportunities to offer for growing and harvesting plants except to sell them in an "outdoor farmer's market".

- Jobs

The jobs were fun to explore. There is a variety of opportunities to gain from working through the levels of the careers in Sims 3 similar to Sims 2, but you get to choose which branch to specialize in once your Sim hits a certain level. One of my Sims is a Thief, and she went into the Master Thief track. The other track is World Leader. The hours are quite flexible enough to allow your Sim to take on a part-time job to make extra cash.

- No Loading Times

Sims 3 has one upper hand over Sims 2. No loading screens, no long loading times between lots. You can literally go out into the neighborhood map and choose a destination for your Sim to go to and watch your Sim hop into a car or onto a bike and go down the street with your Sim just like you would with your family or friend in their cars in real life.

- Children

They can pretty much take care of themselves in Sims 3. Their parents could head off to the store and not worry about their kids being taken away. The only exception is that a parent has to be home for their baby and toddler since they technically can't take care of themselves. Children can pretty much go anywhere alone like to the park to play, to the river to fish and whatnot. But there are limitations to what children can do in Sims 3. BUT there are mods out there now to allow them to do much more in Sims 3 than in Sims 2.

- Trait System

No longer do we rely on zodiac signs to determine our Sims' personalities and futures. The traits in Sims 3 are hilarious. You can mix up a bunch of traits in any way you want with a few exceptions. A Sim can't be athletic and couch potato at the same time, but I know some people in real life who can be athletic and be couch potatoes at the same time.  Grin But the traits define the Sims much more in interesting ways as in how they will deal with life, other Sims, their careers and their futures.


These are some of the good highlights of Sims 3 I think are worthwhile to consider. There are too many to list, but these are the selling points for me pretty much because in Sims 3, you can almost do anything you want with building and recoloring.


Bad Points:

- Rabbit Holes

You can't watch your Sims work, attend classes or school and shop at stores. They disappear into "rabbit holes", but you could hear your Sims doing things inside though. I know someone is attempting to circumvent that in an experiment, but I doubt it will work. Not without extensive mod editing tools to truly edit the core game files like we did with Sims 2.

- Careers For Teens

There are only about 3 to 5 careers for your teens in Sims 3. They are part-time jobs teens can take up after school from about 3 PM to 6 or 7 PM. There are no other careers I know of at this date to give teens more variety. Sucks big time because teens in Sims 2 have tons of opportunities to take full-time careers if they want, they could take night classes and so forth with mods out there in existence.

- Romance

Whoever thought up and implemented the system to enable romance between adults should be shot. I actually had to WORK hard to get my two adults in a marriage to gain more romantic interactions. I believe married Sims should already have all of the romantic interactions available regardless. Nothing pisses me off more than to see one spouse reject the other spouse's advances. Really ridiculous.

* This is a project I plan to look into to see if I can make all interactions available. If someone already did this, let me know.*

- Lighting

Lighting in Sims 3 seems to be very strange for certain video cards. I own an ATI Radeon XT1300 series video card with 256 onboard DDR memory which is supposed to do a good job rendering the visuals almost as realistic as possible. Except Sims 3. My Sims look fine indoors, but when they go outside, their skins looked splotchy. I noticed the rough edges of shadowing on them and thought maybe anti-aliasing in game wasn't working right because I HAD anti-aliasing turned on from the ATI Catalyst control panel.

This is an area where many people have discussed about the video cards they used to play Sims 3 with. Many people ended up going out to buy better video cards for that reason alone like I described with the lighting and rendering issues. I might either add a new video card to my system to work with my current video card or just go out and buy a better one with 1 GB onboard memory. But I am not done messing around with the game options and ATI options yet.

- Memory

Yes, Sims 3 can be memory intensive because of the amount of rendering the computer has to do if you set all of the game options to Max. Your best bet is to get at least 1 GB memory for your machines if they are older than 2 years or 2 GB or more for your machines if they are less than 2 years old. Memory sticks are so cheap now that you can practically plunk down about 40 bucks for a 2 GB DDR2 or DDR3 stick or pairs if they come in pairs. Most online computer parts sites sell them for cheaper than that. My partner found a pair of DDR2 2 GB memory sticks for around 10 to 20 bucks at one site, but it was the site we don't buy from. I'm just saying that there are many places you can go to and get your machines upgraded with new stuff. Best Buy probably will install them for free on the same day if they are not behind in their customer queues. Still, it is an investment you have to think about first and commit to.


These are just some of the bad points about Sims 3, but in the end, it is up to you to see for yourself if you want to buy Sims 3. Take a look at the different screenshots in the Sims 3 section. There are stunning pictures of the scenery around your Sims at different times, beautiful homes to pine for (and wish for in real life! Lewisb40 did a fantastic job on the homes she built or remodeled for Sims 3), delicious Sims in both men and women's sections. Look at them for yourselves.

My advice is to make sure you have a list of system specs on hand to consider when you look at the boxed product at the store. Consider how much money you want to spend if your machine lacks in memory and video card specs. I know of some people who successfully ran Sims 3 on machines with processors running at just under 2GHz. But that's them who might've overclocked their machines..

Hope this will help you consider.
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aqua-sheep
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« Reply #3 on: July 25, 2009, 01:24:33 pm »

Chaavik: Thank you so much for all the time you spent writing this Smiley It's really helpful, and I'll definitely consider all of your points. Those building and coloring tools sound amazing!! And now i'm cleared up on what it means that you "can't see inside the buildings." Someone had said that and i thought it meant ALL the buildings except your main house.

Now, one rumor I'd still like cleared up...can you really only have one family at a time, and if you switch families, will the first one reset?
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Chaavik
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« Reply #4 on: July 25, 2009, 01:59:13 pm »

Yeah, if you switch away from your first family, you lose that first family. They become a "townie" family, and their wishes/opportunities get reset. Their careers, I think, get reset too, but I could be wrong on the careers. They also will "disappear" from the neighborhood if Story Progression move the original family out, meaning that you will not get your original family back period.

There are two extensive mods that fixed those issues you're concerned about:

Awesome Mod

This mod, in terms of modding, is the most extensively done mod to circumvent many things that bothered the users in general such as losing their original families, fixing the EA bugs with careers, households, and many other things too long to list.

You should take the time to read up on Awesome Mod and its features.

Indie Stone Mod

This mod is similar to the Awesome Mod with one exception. The exception is that you can toggle the features on or off from the Sim's cell phone. Many people liked this mod because of how it handled Story Progression.

BUT just recently, Pescado made an effort to rewrite the Awesome Mod to be compatible with Indie Stone mod so that people can have both installed to configure more features to how they want to play Sims 3.

Don't be confused or overwhelmed by the descriptions of these two most important mods that people should not be caught dead without. They're quite simple to install and use.
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aqua-sheep
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« Reply #5 on: July 25, 2009, 04:10:07 pm »

Thank you Chaavik!! I'll definitely check those out.
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fornax
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« Reply #6 on: July 25, 2009, 05:34:31 pm »

I agree with the majority of the points Chaavik made, in particular the positive ones, but there was no mention of a few very important negative aspects.


1.  The sims themselves.  Go around the numerous posts about the looks of the sims in this new game... EA did not put enough emphasis on this one important aspect of the game, and simply put, TS3 sims faces and body customization are a huge letdown.  You would think that after all the hype about the many sliders available to shape a sim to your liking, one would be able to create unique looking sims in every respect, but it just isn't so.   Faces follow a general 3D model shape that consistently share common elements, in particular, eyes, noses, foreheads, and and overall roundish appearance of the head, that in the end turns out cartoonish and lacking in uniqueness.  There's a hack by MTS (Delphy) that forces the adjusting sliders out of their intended bounds, but remember this a hack that has to be present in any game sharing sims made this way, and yet another preliminary hack that pre-empts many others from exixting in your computer.  As far as the sim bodies, only overall fatness (or skinniness) and overall muscular appearance (not as noticeable as fatness) adjustments are possible.  Forget about being able to adjust separately upper or lower body parts, so no manly chests or bigger boobs, and no calf adjustment for skinny or muscular legs.

2.  Single neighborhoods.  While this is great as far as having a hood which is alive in almost every respect, there is no solid promise from EA that we will be able to generate our own turfs or place lots or roads anywhere we please.  Believe me, even with the additional Riverview neighborhood, the game can become redundant.  Yet, hopefully they will surprise us later.

3.  TS3 basic design to limit third party modding and custom content.   Here everybody agrees: the game isn't as open as before because of EA's increasing desires to milk the players.  The EA store is the No. 1 proof, go check the neverending posts opposing this practice.

So, generally speaking this is a gorgeous game to look at on your screen, with gameplay a lot deeper than The Sims 2, and I have to say that high computer specs are not really that necessary for it to run smoothly.  Here EA wrote better programming code than with TS2, I have not changed one thing in any of my two main PC's, and this game runs better than TS2 for sure.  But again, my TS2 is fully expanded and TS3 is still basic, which has to be considered too.  But then again, TS2 doesn't give you an entire neighborhood all at once (or so to speak).  As for the loading times, it loads fast, but there are two loads, one for the main game and then for your saved game.  My recommendation to you find someone that has it and check it out first.

Good luck.

« Last Edit: July 25, 2009, 05:44:20 pm by fornax » Logged
aqua-sheep
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« Reply #7 on: July 25, 2009, 07:55:35 pm »

thanks, fornax. those things are good to know Smiley
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argentroisin
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« Reply #8 on: June 27, 2018, 02:37:12 pm »

I know this review is years after the original post but maybe it will help someone decide if they want to try the Sims 3. I enjoyed the game play and the way you could recolor any item, but there were two main issues with Sims 3 which sent me to play Sims 2 instead. You have to sign in to Origin on-line before Sims 3 will even start. That means if your internet connection is disconnected you have no way to be able to play Sims 3. I looked for many ways, but if the game gets updated past an early version you have to sign in on Origin. Origin also has continuous updates so if it has an update you have to update Origin before you can even start Sims 3. The other issue I had is that it takes almost as long to save and exit as it takes to load the game in the first place. I understand about long loading times, but I don't understand why it takes as long to exit the game. Even exiting without saving first takes a long time.
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