Like many people out there, I started hearing about this game called The
Sims a few years back. I heard about how addictive it was, how
people could play for hours on end and not even notice, and I realized
two things—first, I was going to buy this game, and second, I was
going to fail a couple classes.
A few close calls aside, I purchased and played around with the game for
hours and hours on end. I've only purchased the original, as EA just seems
to get more frustrating with their "Release an expansion pack as a new
product" methodology (they started doing this with SimCity 4, at which
point I told myself "No more sim games that I haven't programmed"),
but that's another rant in and of itself.
The reason I bring SimCrack up is because I discovered a strategy for the
end of the game that can help a fully advanced character earn all the decorating
simoleans he or she could ever need. Some people would use cheat codes in
this instance, but I'd much rather have the satisfaction of cheating the
Basically stated, you use the game's promotion system against it. I spend
most of my early game advancing my character to a point where his job is
good enough that he doesn't have to scrimp on the change, and then I slowly
start building his attributes (forcibly when necessary). Since most job advancements
are based on skills, I figured that if I just improved all of my skills,
I could have the run of the company.
SO...every night my poor little sim would come home I'd send him straight
to the books, working him until his mood got too low, then worked his mood
back up so I could repeat the process (he may whine about it, but hey, he's
just doing what the program tells him too anyway). By the time his levels
are fairly high, he's ripe for the picking. Now I could make 10 or 20 friends
and choose one of the more profitable career tracks at this point, but I'm
more devious than that. I get a reasonable number (5 or 6 max), and then
I start rotating jobs. I advance in one job until it requires more friends
than I have, then I move on to the next job. I just do this for (game) days
What's the point, you may ask? Think about it—every time you get promoted
in the game, they pay you a day's pay at the new rate, plus double that in
a promotion bonus. So you earn what is essentially three days' worth of money
for one day's worth of work. The trick is to keep your Sim happy, because
by this point his stats are so high that he can get any promotion he desires,
provided he's kept in a good mood (having a "friend" move in seems
to help with this, as it eliminates the need to look outside the household
for social development). And that's it.
Since you'll have the money rolling in, you'll have the ability to purchase
anything your heart may desire. Maybe it's more obvious than I thought, but
to me when I figured this out it was a revelation (so it was hard for me,
lemme alone :-P )
Until next month!
Note! For more details about TheSims addiction, see Linda
Johnson's article in the April, 2003 issue of TechTrax.