I’m not taking part in the IncGamers Sims 4 review because it’s been so long since I played a Sims game that I can’t even remember what it was like. Tim is taking care of the review because he knows The Sims like the back of his hand and you can read his first impressions here.
But there are gamers like myself who may pick up The Sims 4 as (pretty much) a fresh Sims experience, so I wanted to find out how much I would enjoy the game as it stands. I know there are features missing that will probably be added as DLC later down the line, but how noticeable is this for someone who doesn’t have previous Sims games to compare it against? And, most important, does it seem like a good game?
Creating your Sim
The screen loads up and I’m presented with a weeping guy in a suit. He’s not happy. Other Sims then pop on screen doing stuff and that’s the cue to hit the “Create a Sim” button and get creating what I hope will be a really annoying Sim.
My Sim is a guy, his aspirations are popularity, because I would like him to be as shallow as possible. He’s also a bit of joker and apparently he’s also now gregarious. Because he wants to be popular he’s also a self assured goofball but can be hot-headed. In other words, if this guy was alive he’s be a right pain to be around. I have now named him Hugh Jarse.
The character creator is fun and you can mess about with it for quite a while, but the accessories and clothing options are a bit limited. I decided to flip through the randomiser which does a great job of nudging you in the right direction if you just keep clicking it. A few randomisations later and Hugh was born. I think he looks suitably annoying; the kind of ‘hilarious’ guy who stands in the corner at parties with a lampshade on his head.
Up comes the world of the Sims, which looks quite small but I can’t tell yet. Not until the Jarse household moves into Potter’s Splay. Looks like a friendly neighbourhood.
A Home for Monsters
The tutorial pops up and I realise I may have created a monster. I’m only a few minutes in and Hugh is constantly looking at his damn mobile phone, a pet hate I have in real life. What have I done?
Hang on though, there’s a bunch of chatty neighbours come to talk to Hugh. At this point I’m hoping he’s going to make a tit of himself so in the future I won’t have to talk to any of them ever again. Jarse is now apparently inspired and I can buy an easel. He really needs one right now even though he’s homeless and standing in an empty plot of land. Really Hugh? Is really the time for painting?
Time to pause and build a house for this whacky funster.
The build tools are all explained in the build tutorial and there are stacks of options with which to experiment. With a limited budget at the start it’s not easy to get things exactly as you want, but the premade room options are not bad. In order to give Jarse a bedroom I had to build one with the wall tool because I’d run out of cash for any of the pre-made options. He ended up with a square box and a basic bed. He doesn’t need anything else though because he’s a paaaartaay animal.
House built and back to the action. The Jarse adventure has now truly begun and the first thing he wants is food. How disappointing, I was hoping he would crack open a six pack. Nevermind, he’s making a salad, but not any ordinary salad, a paaaartaaay sized salad. Rock on!
Hugh eats his food alone… for a very long time.
Back to the mobile phone he goes, and then off for a quick dump. He’s boring me and the only option I have is to send him jogging. That will teach him!
Trying to Become the Neighbourhood Pest
It’s at this point I was wondering, what now? Tips and hints pop up telling you to be “mischievous” and to go and interact with other Sims which makes perfect sense. Spotting an unsuspecting Sim called Diana, she will be Hugh’s “target” for a “funny introduction”.
I’m trying to make Hugh annoying, using a hand buzzer trick, flashing crazy eyes, and gossiping. He should be really annoying but Diana is lapping it up. Hmm. Time to pay a neighbour a visit.
Hugh knocks on the door, it opens, he enters and just saunters up the stairs like some weird stalker. Eventually he finds the owner, sits down, plays chess and then I tell him to lie about his career and some other idiotic conversation pieces. He does manage to piss her off so that trick worked.
In walks the husband Rob Pancakes (Really? Pancakes?), he looks serious so I take my leave. Not before I successfully invite/lure his other half round to the Hughster’s Palace of Fun.
Hugh is tired though. He needs to sleep, but Eliza Pancake stays in his house like a big weirdo. Under normal circumstances she would surely just leave without having to be asked. Horrifyingly enough, she’s got so comfortable in Hugh’s pad she plops herself on the bog to lay what I can only assume is a big jobbie. How rude.
Why is He Always On the Damn Phone?
Hugh sleeps, wakes up, has brunch and takes a shower. I have also just discovered why Hugh is always on his phone. It looks like he could be gaming because I know he has no mates and the game has just told me he’s reached level 2 in gaming. He doesn’t own a TV or a PC so that could explain why he won’t get off the damn mobile.
At this point the game is a few days into the cycle and it’s quite mundane stuff so I decide to leave Hugh to operate on his own for while to see what happens.
A Purpose In Life
While it would be great to just doss around and take the occasional trip to the park, Hugh needs a purpose. Time to get a job.
There are a selection of jobs available, all accessed via (grr) the mobile phone. As Hugh can’t keep his mitts off the mobile the best job available is in tech. Astronaut was a tempting option, but there’s no way this idiot should be let anywhere near a spacecraft.
Hugh has two days off a week from answering tech support calls. It’s not surprising he’s actually getting quite a bit angrier. I now have to schedule periodic sessions in the bathroom mirror to calm him down.
I know he has to go to work but that leaves me in limbo. While he’s off having a lovely time answering tech support calls, I am left in Potter’s Splay with not a lot to do. His salary is so crap that there’s not enough money in the pot to allow me to mess about with the build tool, and while he’s gone I can’t even check his stats. Nothing for it but to advance time until he shows up again.
It was more fun when Hugh was just lounging around with no purpose. I got bored waiting for the work day to finish, so I instructed Hugh to just leave early. I know the Sims need to earn cash but taking them out of play for long periods is annoying, though perhaps opting to look after just one Sim is probably not the best option.
That’s something to investigate in the next Hugh Jarse play session. Back soon…
Founder and Editor of PC Invasion. Veteran PC gamer of over 22 years.