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A Passive Aggressive Love Letter to the Sims 3 (disguised as a review)

by SirenCymbaline

Warning: This work has been rated 16+.

Hoo boy. This is prolly the first PC game that I played a lot of, back in my tweens. It's easy to get absorbed in designing, colour-coordinating, and micromanaging these little, little lives.

You make one, you make another to play with while the first one is at work, you make some children to see what their facial features look like when you smush them together, you micromanage the child, you make a dog, screencap the disgusting glitches, buy the goddamned DLCs, make another sim to keep them company, make another sim to match the curtains.

I reinstalled the Sims 3 last year, and played it only twice, spending an hour per sim in Create a Sim, maybe another hour colour-coordinating the house, then a few minutes making them binge study and get jobs.

Installing the game took roughly the same amount of time as all that put together.

(For that reason, I have not uninstalled the game, for despite the fact that I hope to God I never play it again, if I do, I don't want to have all that extra time to spend thinking about it.)

The Sims, I suppose, is no more a waste of time than anything else is, but the Sims is special, in that it makes you feel the existential dread that most other time sponges are able to drown out, as your sims do their homework, get promotions, look after their children, do taxes, make the children match the curtains, colour the swimming pool tiles red to make the water look red because you're an edgy tween who didn't have the Supernatural DLC but still wanted to pretend your sims were vampires- what was I saying?

Watch your sims become forensic scientists right out of high school, the goddamn gifted little fuckers, why can't I be a forensic scientist?

My point is, the Sims, depending on your point of view, is either a curse that drains you of the time you could be spending on being productive in your own life, giving you momentary highs of gratification that you prolong for as long as possible because you know as soon as its over you are left only with a slightly more ingrained sense of self-loathing than you were before, and are filled with the desire to go do things that make you hate yourself in more productive ways, at the very least.

OR. Or this game is a lesson, designed to beat you into wanting to stop playing it, so you can go walk the dog, or become a forensic scientist or something.

If that is indeed the case, then my compliments on the find-the-item loading screens, the Origin program, the loading screens that go most of the way and stay there until you satisfy it with a blood sacrifice, the constant badgering to register your game online, and the microtransaction advertisements that clog up my beloved sim-editing and house-editing menus.

Never before have I felt more motivated to turn off my laptop and clean up the entire house.

No, my real house. My real house that I live in, with my real relatives, that have mild hoarding problems.

Thank you, EA. You helped make me the hard worker that I am today.

Play this game, if you must, just remember- Ambitions and Supernatural are the only add-ons that are worth the bother (unless you need some screencaps for your creepypasta, in which case, get Pets), try to come out of this with the USEFUL type of self loathing, and remember to exorcise your poor obese hard drive as soon as you regain your strength of will.

And don't for the love of God get any of your friends or family into it. This is a test, for which you may come out stronger, but there's no guarantee that your loved ones will.

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Is this a review?



User avatar

Points: 101
Reviews: 3

Sun Jan 27, 2019 8:22 pm
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TheEgg wrote a review...

*crashes through wall* DID SOMEONE SAY SIMS???

The egg has eggspecially chosen your essay, due to the 200 hours logged on his steam account.
I agree with this. The Sims 3 showed me that I should make things happen in my own life rather than sitting down with a bag of chips, playing God with a family of 4. I'm also in agreement that Sims have it waaaay too easy.

A few spelling errors (im not up with the times as a teenager so they might be slang), like where you say "exorcise" instead of "exercise", "prolly" instead or "probably" (i know sometimes people put that but I would've put the latter). Also, you should've described what the game is. I know everyone does, but it would've helped make sense of things. but the frickin 20 dollar dlcs are what I agreed with most in this lol.

Overall a very interesting viewpoint to how the game affects people. I give this one a thumbs up.

User avatar
13 Reviews

Points: 18
Reviews: 13

Sun Jan 27, 2019 9:43 am
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GreyMatter wrote a review...

Hi SirenCymbaline,
Having spent some time playing Sims, I think I am qualified enough to comment here. I have had the same realization while playing the game. One feels so motivated to make the characters study and do well in life. It is a wonder we do not care for our real world with the same zeal. Like most other games, it's a trap. We want to be in control with minimum efforts. This is what makes these games so addictive. The instant progression and rewards pump our hormones to give instant gratification. It can suck the life out of someone. I have had the misfortune of wasting tremendous amounts of time playing all sorts of games. What I have realized is playing games isn't necessarily a bad thing, but it must not come at the cost of anything more important.
Enough with my rant! Now for your writing itself, I must admit the first impression was poor. I do not enjoy seeing a 'prolly' where a 'probably' would do equally well. It comes down to personal preference but I believe that many people would agree with me, considering the platform you've chosen.
You are good at using line breaks and know when to switch paragraphs.
The content of your article wasn't lacking in anything (no surprise there). What stood out for me was not once you explained what the game is about. You did it indirectly through narrating your experience. Not only is this effective for readers familiar with Sims (me) but a stranger to the game can still understand.
Your message comes out loud and clear. You achieved it without being preachy and related a tiny yet important piece of your life. For what it's worth, you earn a star like from me.

There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside of you.
— Maya Angelou