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Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Myspace Migration: My Experience With The Sims &... Dude, Where's My Kleenex?!

No, I'm not sick. My kids are, though. And for someone who could take stock out in the Kleenex company, I'll be darned if I can find ONE box of Kleenex in this house when it's needed (which is really kinda sad, because I own six). Anyway, my day has been filled with chicken soup, thermometers, tylenol (of which I'm now out and am contemplating a store run), juice (of which I'm also out), finding kleenex and then trying to keep our dog away from the kleenex... incidentally, Kleenex shreds very easily and is kind of a pain to pick out of your carpet.

We had company pictures yesterday. In a few weeks, we'll get to see if he shot one where I wasn't blinking, sporting the "short bus smile", talking, brushing my hair away from my face, looking like the world is coming to an end NOW, or half a dozen other perfectly picturesque poses... none of which you actually WANT in a picture. LOL - Last year, I seriously looked like I had been drugged or something. We'll see...

So, Lindsey and I were playing this game today - Sims2. First of all, I've GOT to start paying attention to the rating systems for these games. There are parts of it that are definitely not appropriate for kids. In this game, each Sim has different personalities, interests, and values. They also have "aspirations" - either family, fortune, popularity, romance, or knowledge. You can choose your Sim's aspiration when you make them. So, Lindsey and I make this sim - Lauren Baker. Lauren ends up following the Fortune aspiration (Lindsey liked that they have to buy a bunch of stuff on that track to stay happy) and met Mortimer Goth. Mortimer and Lauren chat and joke and play and end up friends. Eventually, they flirt and date and then, it's time for her to propose. "Engagement" wasn't an option - just "move-in."

Fortunately, Lindsey just assumed that meant they would be married... and honestly, I did too, at first. Um, No. Turns out, Mortimer's MARRIED to someone else! That was disturbing. Going further, Lindsey decides she wants a baby in the house. So, I'm clicking around and figure out how to make that happen - but, I don't want her to see it. Why? They get to make "whoo-hoo" and they also have "try for a baby" when they're both in bed. Can you say not appropriate for children? So, I sent her out of the room to clean her nose and made that happen.

The.Bed.Shakes.Bounces.Up.and.Down.and.Fireworks.Go.Off when they're done. Also, unlike the original version of Sims, Lauren became more visibly pregnant, in stages. We got to watch her tummy grow, she went on maternity leave and then Poof! She went into labor (which had me seriously concerned and I had to cover Lindsey's eyes, just in case) and the little green diamond above her head seperated into two. They had a family. Of course, he was still married to someone else - but, they had a family and they stayed together until Mortimer's Life Span expired and he died. Oh yah, they die in this one. It's a generational game.

What did strike me as interesting about this was that each Sim had his/her own value code. When Lindsey wasn't watching, I explored the game a little further. Turns out, some Sims are ok with "whoo-hoo" before sharing a house, some are ok with moving in but not getting married; some want to get married before moving in. Some Sims want to have a baby, but not a family/marriage. And, it appears as though you can have same-sex relationships, though I couldn't bring myself to fully test that theory.

Also, another interesting facet was the "aspiration bar." Yesterday, I was talking with Witty, my mentor, about needing to figure out what my practice is aspiring to. I mean, I have a vague to somewhat-defined idea of what I want the end goal to be - but, I haven't mapped out all the moves. This game had it all mapped out: you knew what they wanted, when they wanted it and how to get them there. I'm almost embarrassed to say that it somewhat inspired me to map my business out - although, I would have done it even if it hadn't.

Finally, I found it interesting that when Lindsey & I made a girl Sim, Elle, who most closely resembled me... she was the most happy and successful when there was no man in her life. Go figure. So there's my experience with the Sims. I seriously let my "inner dork" flag fly and I had to share it.

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