I’ve been playing The Sims since its release in 2000. I’ve been addicted. I’ve spent hours trawling the net for furniture mods, celebrity Sims, skins, outfits, hairstyles, etc. I’ve raised generations of families of Kate-Sims, built thousands of houses and demolished them (regularly) and killed my Sims in every way possible when I got bored of them.
The Sims has progressed massively since it’s first instalment. I remember very robotic movement, no facial expressions and basically robots moving around my carefully created house. I now find that The Sims 4 is scarily accurate if you make Sims of real-life people.
There are a variety of choices with regards to different aspects of your Sims’ personality. Whilst varied, it’s not excessive. I generally make Sims of myself and people I know.
For my own Sim, I always choose traits of bookworm, geek and tidy. My Sim gets a hell of a kick from cleaning the house and gets massively annoyed when things are untidy or dirty. Anyone who knows me will realise that this is also true about myself. My boyfriend has said on numerous occasions that he can see my “fun bar” going up whenever I’m scrubbing the kitchen. My Sim also gets really sad and gets withdrawal when she doesn’t play video games for a while. Again, also true.
Now this is where it gets odd. We all know that our phones listen to our conversation so they can tailor news feeds and adverts to us. But is it possible that our computer games are also tuning in on our conversations?
My boyfriend likes to lounge around and do as little as possible, spending a good deal of time in his PJs, eating bowls of sugar-loaded cereals, in front of his PlayStation. His PJs are so well worn that they’ve seen better days and are usually covered in food stains. He also hates showering so I like to think when I look at him in real life, sat there in his food stained PJs, eating his cereal with his mouth open whilst watching the TV screen, that I can actually see green mist emanating from him in a miasma of stink. When it comes to his Sim, I can’t for love nor money train him to get dressed himself. He leaves the bed unmade and the house a mess, leaving my Sim entirely stressed out. Every aspect of his Sim is true to life.
I thought this was about as close to life as the game got, but then I made Sims of my two best friends. One of them is very serious and gets angry very quickly, loves to nap, is obsessed with noodles and gets bored extremely quickly, whilst the other is so laid back he is horizontal and spends every second he’s not at work, on his PC. I have a lot of disagreements with the first and we do a good deal of fighting. So imagine my surprise when I move their Sims into my neighbourhood and send my Sim round to introduce herself and my laid back friend comes to his door with a massive smile, cheerfully introduces himself to her, shakes her hand and then invites her in, before quickly disappearing back upstairs to plonk himself down on his PC and get back to his games. I suspect he was playing Dawn of the Dragons.
In a strange house with no one to talk to, I get my Sim to say hello to Serious Friend. She begins conversation and he immediately yawns and outright walks away from her, leaving her mid-conversation and feeling a little more than awkward. He ventures to the kitchen and prepares himself some quick food, which looks suspiciously like noodles, which he eats in silence before disappearing upstairs to lie on the bed for a nap.
Irked at being so rudely treated, my Sim follows Serious Friend upstairs, wakes him up from his nap and begins to Discuss her Interests. He flat out interrupts her by saying “blah blah blah”, pulls a disgusted face, dramatically fake yawns and goes to walk away again. By this time, I, as the player am furious at him and hurt for my Sim’s feelings and ask her to walk up to him again and Insult him. She does. She jabs and pokes at his chest for good measure. He doesn’t take it well. He doesn’t even answer, he just dives on her in a cloud of smoke and exclamation/question marks. Happy Friend is blissfully unaware of the WWE sized fight going on at his feet, still sat at his PC, still happily playing his game.
When the fight is over, both my Sim and Serious Friend can’t even bear to be in the same room and she storms home. He goes back to bed for another nap.
Now I’m fairly sure I didn’t choose “likes noodles, enjoys naps, hates Kate-Sim” as traits for Serious Friend. That is mostly because those traits don’t exist.
It was scarily accurate and I’m confused.