Beta Test #23: The Sims 4
The year: 2007
The game: The Sims 2
My Brother: Not allowed to watch the giant Woo-Hoo display video concentrated around two sims (one of which is me, and the other my primary school crush that would eventually disappear into the realm of obscurity). I try to tell him to go away, that this is an adult thing and that he’s not allowed to watch. He is 9 years old and thinks he is also very grown up, also that I never let him do anything. My mother is unphased, but to me, a responsible 13 year old with an unhealthy fear of fucking up, letting my brother watch two sims give each other bedroom eyes is unfathomable. I am afraid. My brother is happy to spend time with me. The sims whisper to each other to initiate the coital action…
The cut scene doesn’t play because I forgot I disabled the feature.
Dag Dag Plumbobs! I’m Bethany Griffiths, and this is Beta Test! A game review platform where I – Tira Mirnah – choose one game a month to go ham on until either I get better or get wrecked. All in the hopes that I can provide you with a completely (un)biased review.
OH YEAH, the heavyweight of games. The legendary big boi. The only reason I own Origin. The ‘Katsu Tsu’ graveyard of Maxis dreams.No, don’t let my intro fool you, gone are the days of The Sims 2, now it’s all about The Sims 4! I have played this game so heavily over the years I have to tell you, It has become my life for months at a time. I have lost days of sleep due to collecting every single collectable, skill, and expansion pack available. I have gone long long hours of game play only for a Sim to die or the game to crash (early Sims 2) and realise I haven’t saved in the last Seven hours. My love for The Sims can not be eclipsed by anything this worldly on the video game market! (until they bring out a Tanz Der Vampire game, but I don’t see that happening this millennia soooo)
Developed by Maxis, and published by Electronic Arts [EA games ‘Challenge everything’ *fwish*], The Sims 4, most modern of sims franchise games, is a virtual world simulator where you control a fully customisable character(s). The characters are given personalities granted through three base traits that you can expand on by following lifetime achievements, and fulfilling goals. You create everything for them including housing which is also fully customisable, from the ground up. The base game comes with a very comfortable amount of material for you to shape and build your sims’ world around them, build their house, create connections, and family trees however expansion packs are available to provide new exciting experiences for your little mini me’s AND BITCH GUESS WHAT JUST CAME OUT! The Sims 4 is now a ~University Graduate~, and I am so pumped! (Footnote: this review is going to be about the sims 4: Discover University. Want me to review the base game? Drop me a line buckaroo)
Ok so first of all, no I didn’t pre-order, this is not Fallout 76, I will not tell a company that I’m happy with a bullshit product. I look for QUALITY in my Sims. And quality I got. So with that in mind, hold on to your seats because this bitch is back and Tina Turner is Quaking!
The Sims 4: Discover University is an expansion that I’ve frankly been waiting for ever since The Sims 2 stopped being a thing (get outta here with your Sims 3. It’s a completely different game and holds no bearing to the sims universe in my opinion. Also the game renders horribly. Get. Out). Yes, long have the days been since I could add spicy plot lines like ‘oh no I’m failing my degree’, and ‘oh no I didn’t get accepted into my course’, and the coveted ‘bitch watch me change my education degree into an arts degree and grow in HECCS debt’ (all real life Bethany created, Bethany lived scenarios). But now! Now I get to see the glory of education, I get to dive into the sea of fraternities, and dorky drama clubs that I may or may not have been president, vice president, and treasurer of in one single year. I get cool new clothing options! Yeah baby mamma I’m there!
The game itself runs beautifully. My computer fans might want to take off and fly about the room, but it’s smooth as a giant memory stored game can be. It seems as well that with every installation the detail gets better and better, for instance, the original hair textures were good, but there were better mods for The Sims 2 that I could have been using (anyone else use Modthesims.com or was it just me? Shout out to Bruno!) These ones though! There’s so much texture, such a variety, there’s so many more options for ethnically diverse sims! I can finally build a sim that has dreads that don’t look like Post Malone got high on meth and tried to style Ariana Grande’s hair. And Hijabs are a thing now! It’s so exciting to be given the gift of creation and I’m so happy that people that felt like they couldn’t truly create themselves or felt excluded in the game can now partake and feel like they can join in the community! (I realise that the game still has a lot it could do to adjust to people and cultures across the world, and while I wholeheartedly rejoice in the small victories that have been given, I do wish they came sooner. I am not blind to that fact. If you want to talk about ethnicity and diversity in the gaming sphere I would love to be an ear for you, and facilitate you. Please drop me a line, and we can get the convo started)
Coming back from that, I have noted some differences to the original 2 package. The most stark being you need to apply to a university, you can’t make sims to slot into Uni like The Sims 2. That was the first thing I tried, and I was ‘uuugh’ing at the effort it would take to put a sim in a house, apply, wait for the response, and move them in to the dorm rooms. (all in all 20 mins of game play). Once I got started though, it was fine, and I feel like the reward for taking care of your sims skills and needs is in the acceptance to the university itself. Springing off that, once you get in there is a finite amount of electives you can do per degree. Elective opportunities hinge of the amount of core subjects you take per term, and once you hit your max you can’t choose more. For example: I took 2 terms of 4 core subjects with 1 elective each, that’s a total of 12 credit points, the next semester I choose 3 core subjects. Because I have hit 15 credit points with my last 3, I can’t choose an elective even though I have room in my calendar. Not a problem for the average or casual gamer but I NOTICED AND WANTED MY SIMS TO TAKE MORE CLASSES DAMN IT. On the tone of classes, you can put out a student loan (which does nothing if not remind me of my $23,500 debt), instead of paying it straight up. Scholarships are available though, and are pretty easy to get into if you grind your sims the way I do.
From a game play perspective, the only jabs I have are that you don’t actually see the graduation ceremony. I would love a wedding type scenario where your family comes and sees you cross the stage and throw a cap, but I digress it doesn’t detract from the game play at all. School terms also start differently for each sim, dependent on when they enrol, so say I had a set of siblings at the uni but one got in before the other, that sim will graduate first, which is a bit of a hassle if you want to develop them at the same rate. The good news is though, you don’t have to leave campus straight away if you live on an ‘on campus, self owned’ lot, so I could keep my siblings together till they both graduated which I thought was a much nicer feature than ‘your sim has graduated. They have 24 hours to pack up their shit and leave’ (paraphrased obviously).
Also as a side note, there is no bar to tell you your grades (which for me, perfectionist supremo, was very hard to cope with), however, you can email your lecturer to ask how you’re going, which was a blessing because I HATE accidentally ruining my sims lives. All ruining must be intentional damn it! And I also figured out that once you go into a dorm room you can’t rearrange uni housing, that is, there is no build mode in the University established buildings. This isn’t tooooo bad because there’s a buy station like in the camping expansion that lets you grab furniture, rugs, books, kegs for keg stands, you know…the usual.
Wow this has been long, I didn’t expect this to go on but I had so much to say! All in all I have found this expansion and recent updates very enjoyable, and would absolutely recommend The Sims 4 to anyone seeking a classic casual game to fall into the llama hole of.
Because of no other reason than it’s the bloody Sims bitch, I give this game:
4/5 PLUMBOB’S for style
0/5 PLUMBOB’S for plot line (it doesn’t need plot line. YOU are the plot line)
5/5 PLUMBOB’S for easiness
5/5 PLUMBOB’S for GOD TIER GAME STATUS
What now? Gonna Game? In the words of the popular YouTuber Thomas ‘TomSka’ Ridgewell, while shaving off his own eyebrows, “Why? Why not? Why anything?”. If that is the case then go ahead and jump on my bandwagon, fling yourself into the abyss of The Sims 4, you won’t regret it! (also if anyone has TomSka’s details please let a bitch know. I NEED that sweet sweet colab deal. We can shave my undercut into a penis, I don’t care) Anyway, I’m way too hyped on the idea of The Sims (I almost said ‘nerd juice’ there in that sentence and I retracted that real quick) to be doing outro’s, sOOOOooooOOOO…
I’ve been Bethany Griffiths, and this has been Beta Test, A game review platform where I either got better or got wrecked. All in the hopes that I can provide you with a completely (un)biased review.
Until next time,