|Nintendo Reviews Rating:
|Posted: November 8th, 2003
|The top-selling PC game now comes to the consoles! EA Games is proud to release this on Nintendo Gamecube. But is this
better than the original PC version? Read the review below.
If you've played the PC version, you know what to expect on the sound effects side of this. There's plenty of sim chants
and murmurs, none of which understandable to us. However, players learn to understand the general idea that the sims
try to get across in conversations. Boys and girls have different unique sounds, and even adults have different sounds than
kids. Sometimes there can be some sound blends that hurt the score for sound. If a (straight) couple is eating dinner and
the male leaves, the female might be making eating noises that still sound like the male or vice versa for other situations.
This isn't too noticeable, and you'll probably get over it.
The music isn't really in the game unless you turn on a radio. The music is catchy and you'll want to listen to each song on
your stereo as your sims dance to it. The lyrics are obviously like sim talk, but they really seem like the singers are
actually saying something which again you can sort of figure out. The music for buying and building stuff is excellent! The
piano solos for building are long and incredible. When you buy stuff, the simple elevator-like music is motivating and once
again a nice job done. There are also little music samples when certain events happen like a new skill point received, a job
promotion, bad day at work, even robberies and fires. The only disappointment is that three of the songs on build mode
were taken out from the PC version. These were nice songs that I liked hearing on the PC version that aren't here. There
is no justifiable reason that they took it out. I got over it, but still... Overall, the sound quality is great, but Dolby
Surround would have been nice. Let's hope the new Bustin' Out game features Dolby Surround sound!
In the PC version, you would use your mouse to click objects and interact with things. This forced you to drag it across the
screen to wherever you wanted, which sometimes got annoying. The major difference in the console versions was the
control system. So going into playing this, I expected something different. I got what I expected, and the control system is
much better than the PC version. In case you don't know, this game runs on a 3D engine, which really spruces up the
gaming experience. You have a yellow bar that acts as your mouse, and you use that with the A button substituting your
left mouse button to use stuff and interact with people and things. The B button cancels actions waiting to be done or
currently doing. The problem is that if you want to cancel actions that are coming ahead, you have to hold L+B and then
use the control pad to select which action you want to delete with A. It's not that big of a deal, but a lot to remember when
all you want to do is delete one action.
The icons are small, which becomes a problem when performing actions. You might have to use L+B at times just to
remember what you're going to do since you might not be able to decipher the icon. In two-player games, this is also a
problem considering the screen is split in half and there's even less room. You can view relationships, status, skills and
traits with the control pad. But these are also small and well ignored by most. If you want to view information on each
thing, you have to hold the control pad, then use the C stick, then press A while still holding the control pad just to view a
little piece of information. This can get quite annoying.
There is one good thing: flexibility. You can move the camera with the C Stick in all directions. Now you can see your sims
in an infinite number of angles, not just four! The X button toggles between wall placements, and although you cannot
build a second floor in this game, it's for the better because it would be hard to configure the controls for switching
between first and second floors.
The loading is fairly fast, and for all that the game saves (6 houses in your neighborhood, extra families, one "Get a Life"
file and all unlocked levels and items) 60 Blocks really isn't that much. It would have been nice to see second-floor
houses, but it saves a lot of Memory Card space and grief without it. If you're used to the PC version, this is a switch, but
otherwise, it shouldn't take long for you to get used to the controls and start raising your sims!
Thanks to the new graphics system, you'll be amazed to see your sims in 3D.
Many of the objects and people are clearly seen, and the lighting effects are
stunning. You can actually tell between natural lighting from the sun and
electrical lighting. It's that good. The only real problem is the framerate, but
this is something also found in the PC version. When the game has to load
something, it freezes for 1-2 seconds to load it. This can get annoying for
people with a lot of things to load. These don't interfere with the overall
gameplay, though. Two-player mode graphics pretty much remain the same
except for the slower framerate at times. The toggling of walls let's you see at
all angles, and The Sims doesn't miss many details at all. This is a great game
to look at; not the best, but nevertheless great.
Gosh, where do I start? The "Get a Life" mode will take hours to beat, and you'll want to play it again to unlock more
items and clothing options! This is a big plus for playing "Get a Life". You can customize everything in just about any way!
You can redecorate, or add new stuff. This is like a simulation playing for yourself. You can play to earn more money and
get promoted to better jobs. You need to build friendships to get promoted, and to help with personal relationships; you
can also get married. That can also help with funds, too, because you can both go to work for a salary. Just don't live off of
You can create your own sims to look just like you, name your sim and personalize its traits. This is similar to RPG
games. You can choose which traits it has, or choose predetermined traits by picking an astrological sign. You can change
clothing for what you normally wear, and change looks with piercings, and other accessories. You can change your hair
style and color too. You'll need to buy things that allow you to do this once you've started playing, but it's worth it!
You can build a temporary house or save up money for a dream house. You can upgrade your house with better quality
items, or decorate your house with assortments of items. You can place things outside your house for outdoor living, too.
You can even build pools and tree swings for maximum fun. For more personalized fun, you can place a hot tub in the
same room as a fireplace to soothe off your sim. You'll find many items like the spa, that replenishes more than one thing
at once like comfort and social with other people to talk to.
There's so many ways to play with The Sims, including multiplayer modes. You can play against each other in fun
minigames, or cooperate to get more things done! Multiplayer is a console exclusive. Now matter how you want to play,
The Sims for console will keep you busy for years to come!
There isn't much to say about the game's design. It is based around addicting gameplay involving building traits, finding
new friends or just basically living somebody's life ten times faster than yours. That makes you ask why you would want to
play this when you can just live your own life. Well since things are like ten times faster, you can get a lot more done.
You can upgrade your house quicker than real life, and it's just interesting to see your sim live and interact with other
sims. It just has a certain feel to it that we know and love.
The console version doesn't lose that appeal at all, unless you have a problem with no second floors. The good thing is that
there seems to be more land for you build a one-story house. There were no console exclusive elements to this game
except for the fact that Nintendo Gamecube features faster loading than other versions. One really cool feature about this,
is you can bring you Memory Card over to a friend's house to share your sims. You can even import your friend's houses
to the correct address on your file if it's open. This is extremely cool, because you can share things with your friends
through your game when they aren't around.
The only minor disappointment is that the game feels more like a port than anything. I feel they just didn't develop too
much new stuff for the consoles. There also seems like a lack of items compared to the PC. That can be overlooked
considering the "Get a Life". The innovative style of the game is not lost, either. The game still has an addictive charm to
it and will provide endless hours of fun. The value of the game is still big considering three expansion packs that are built
right into the game. It's a blast!
The replay is the main reason to get this game. You won't get bored with this easily. There's always something going on
with your sim, and if there isn't, you can invite somebody over or throw a party. Just don't make the neighbors complain
by making it too noisy! All in all, the console is a much better way to experience The Sims. If you can let go of a few
things from the PC version, you'll find that this is much more enjoyable. Don't miss out on The Sims for Nintendo