Thursday, March 22, 2012

The Sims Life Stories

The Sims
The Sims Life Stories
by Aspyr Media
Platform:   Mac
4.0 out of 5 stars(2)

Buy new: $19.99 $4.88
24 used & new from $3.49

(Visit the Best Sellers in Simulation list for authoritative information on this product's current rank.)

Over the years the world of The Sims has gotten bigger and bigger; they've busted out and gone to school, opened businesses, gotten pets, partied all night long, and celebrated the seasons. While fans welcome the near-endless supply of Sims 2 expansion packs, EA has stepped back and is creating a new line of Sims titles that trims the excess fat and puts you in control of other people's lives--The Sims Stories.

First to arrive is The Sims: Life Stories, which has set-aside the free-form nature of previous Sims games and opted instead for a bit more structure with the primary "Story Mode." You'll first take control of Riley, an attractive but unlucky-in-life woman seeking her place in a new town, Four Corners. The game eases you into the (now familiar to many) Sims play mechanics with an in-line tutorial that gets the story rolling. Soon enough you'll find yourself with a job, wooed by the local men, and building a new family. The game is helpful in guiding you along the way, explicitly telling your how to get to the next goal.

Once you've finished Riley's story, it's on to the title's male co-star, wealthy Vince, and his lady troubles. Rounding out the game is a free-form play mode like you'll find in Sims 2, albeit stripped down in terms of items and housing options.

The graphics in Sims Life Stories are bright and clean, following what the franchise has established. Humor abounds in the stories, and you'll still hear the bubbly "Simlish" language and relevant sounds spewing from all corners of the game, backed by a simple but pleasant soundtrack.

Sims Life Stories might not have the breadth and depth of Sims 2 and its many expansion packs, but it does offer up a solid and fun Sims experience, especially for gamers on the go or with older systems.

~ Garaphin, Amazon Video Games


  • Two involved storylines featuring likeable characters and a free-form play mode offer plenty of hours of gaming.
  • Optimized code and new keyboard commands allows you to play on laptop computers and older systems.
  • Although marketed as laptop-friendly, my new MacBook still ran into some choppiness and the fan has to run on full blast to keep the system cool. Older systems will likely need to run reduced resolutions for smooth game play.
  • Long-time Sims 2 players might not find much new here.

The Sims Life Stories introduces an all-new Story Mode with two stories that follow the lives of Riley Harlow and Vincent Moore, two very different characters who have reached similar crossroads in their love lives. A comic romantic plot centered around engaging characters guides players through twelve chapters of this one-of-a-kind entertainment experience. Players can take their Sims through unique and entertaining storylines filled with romance, intrigue and dramatic twists. Will female lead character Riley ditch beau number one to marry and have kids with beau number two? Will successful entrepreneur Vince ever find love, or the culprit who's been foiling his heart-earned efforts to find it? Players can discover these answers and more, or enjoy classic open-ended Sims gameplay

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