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I guess I just like liking things

Hard at work, looking at wireframe globes

Hard at work, looking at wireframe globes

Meet Honkus Pants. There has been a version of him in every Sims game I have ever played. He likes what I like and he wears what I wear (or as close as the games allow) because he’s basically a Sim version of me. No matter who else shows up in the neighborhood, there’s always a Honkus Pants.

But Honkus is going to die soon, and it doesn’t look like there’s much I can do about it.

I’ve been playing The Sims Freeplay for a year and a half, maybe longer.  In that time, EA has released several updates and changes to gameplay: new hobbies, ability to visit friends’ towns, new buildings, all that. Some of the things are better than others, of course, but overall it’s been a good mix.  This last update, though, introduced lifespans. Now your Sim can grow old and die!  Wheeeeee!  Wait, I’m sorry, I misspoke: now your Sim will grow old and die. Yep, sorry, there’s little you can do about it.

There is something you can do about it, technically. Another new addition to the game is “life orbs.” Your character’s personality causes your character to really want to do certain things. If you have that Sim do those things it really wants to do, it levels up the life orb. I have one Sim with the ability to have a life orb right now, and her desire is to play Sim City on the computer (and, yes, it amuses me that characters in a Sims game can play Sims games). So every time I have her play it, her life orb goes up a percentage point. She currently has a silver orb, but in another 92% it’ll be gold. I can take that silver orb that she currently has and apply it Honkus to pause his aging for a few days (7, I think). Yes, pause. I don’t know if a gold orb will completely stop his aging, but I doubt it very much.  It’s most likely a longer pause.

So what you could do, I suppose, is use Life Points (LP) to finish jobs immediately. If a job takes 8 hours, it costs 8 LP to instantly finish it. Saves you time, but costs you LP. How do you get LP? By finishing certain tasks, randomly getting them from pets, or random events here and there. Oh, right, and buy using real money to by LP packs from EA.

And now it all makes sense, right? It’s all about the Simoleons. And, hey, I get that companies need to make money, okay? I don’t mind that an average session of Sims requires two clicks to close ads. I don’t mind the ads. What I do mind is a fundamental change to how the game is played. I do not want to be forced to age (and eventually kill) my favorite Sims. I’ve been around them for over a year, I don’t want to see some of them go.  In the PC games you could choose whether or not the aging factor was on, and it seems like that would be the best option here, too. Some people like the aging and want a constantly changing environment. I do not.

Basically the effect this has had on me is that it makes me want to play the game less. The more I play the more Honkus ages. Therefore, if I don’t play, Honkus won’t die. Makes sense to me, other than, oh yeah, now I’m not playing anymore.

Have any games you regularly play updated to something you no longer liked?


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