The Sims 3
|The Sims 3|
The 2009-2010 box art for The Sims 3
|Developer(s)||The Sims Studio|
EA Mobile (mobile)
Edge of Reality (consoles)
|Producer(s)||JoAnna Lio Amos|
Pieter A. Schlosser
|Platform(s)||Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Android, BlackBerry OS, Windows Phone, Bada, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Nintendo DS, Wii, Nintendo 3DS|
The Sims 3 is the third major title in the life simulation video game developed by The Sims Studio (Maxis) and published by Electronic Arts. It is the sequel to The Sims 2. It was announced that it was in development for PlayStation 3 and Wii in November 2006, and later announced for OS X and Microsoft Windows. It was first released on June 2, 2009 simultaneously for OS X and Microsoft Windows – both versions on the same disc. Smartphone versions were also released on June 2, 2009. Console versions were released for PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and Nintendo DS in October 2010 and a month later for the Wii. The Windows Phone version was made available on the Windows Phone Store on October 15, 2010. A Nintendo 3DS version, released on March 27, 2011, was one of its launch titles.
The Sims 3 was a commercial success, selling 1.4 million copies in its first week. Critics issued mostly positive reviews, with an 86/100 score from aggregator Metacritic. The game has sold over ten million copies worldwide since its 2009 release, making it one of the best-selling PC games of all time. The last of eleven expansion packs, Into the Future, was released in October 2013. A sequel, The Sims 4, was released in September 2014 for PC and in November 2017 for consoles.
- 1 Gameplay
- 2 Development
- 3 Expansions, add-ons, editions
- 4 Reception
- 5 References
- 6 External links
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The Sims 3 is built upon the same concept as its predecessors. Players control their own Sims' activities and relationships in a manner similar to real life. The game play is open-ended and does not have a defined goal. Challenges occur randomly based on aspects of each Sim's lifestyle, such as relationships, skills and job. Career opportunities such as working overtime or completing special tasks can yield a pay raise, cash bonus, or relationship boost. Skill opportunities are requests by neighbors or community members for Sims to solve problems using their acquired skills for cash or relationship rewards. If the opportunity is connected to a Sim's school, the reward may be increased school performance.
The new reward system Wishes replaces the Wants And Fears system in its predecessor The Sims 2. Fulfilling a Sim's wish contributes to the Sim's Lifetime Happiness score, allowing players to purchase lifetime rewards for the cost of those Lifetime Happiness points.
The game includes an optional feature called "Story Progression" which allows all Sims in the neighborhood to autonomously continue free will without the player ever controlling those Sims. Sims live for a set duration of time that is adjustable by the player and advance through several life stages (baby, toddler, child, teen, young adult, adult, and elder). Sims can die of old age or they can die prematurely from causes such as fire, starvation, drowning, electrocution. Further causes of death were added in the game's expansion packs.
Create a Sim
The Sims 3 introduces many more character customization options than its predecessor The Sims 2.
The player has a larger selection of body types for Sims as muscle and body weight sliders have been introduced. However, toddlers do not have the option to have their weight customized. Additional options were added over time in free updates, for example sliders for breast size and muscle definition to coincide with the release of the Late Night expansion pack. The Sims 3 offers a wider range of skin tones than its predecessors, ranging from realistic Caucasian and black skins to fantasy green and purple colors, each skin tone can be further customized with a light to dark slider. The player is able to pick their Sim's shoes, a feature previously limited to console versions of The Sims and The Sims 2.
The base game includes 22 female hairstyles and 17 male hairstyles although many more were made available in later expansion packs, stuff packs and content packs from The Sims 3 Store. Hats and accessories may be applied and may also have their colors and textures altered. Each Sim's hair color can be chosen from one of eight basic colors, or the hair color can be customized using a color wheel to choose the base hair color, roots, highlights or tips.
The Sims 3 offers many more character customization options than its predecessors. With the addition of "Advanced Mode", players can focus on single features on a characters body to modify, allowing for detailed customization. Players also have the option of giving freckles, beauty marks, and tattoos to their Sims. 
The Sims 3 also puts a greater emphasis on custom content and mods with a variety of tools available both in and out of the game to aid mod makers. With the addition of third party mods it is possible to add many more hairstyles and clothing options.
There are several skill-dependent abilities, such as more social interactions available from high charisma, special songs for guitar players, and appliance upgrades (self-cleaning, more TV channels, etc.) for high handiness. Sims can begin building skills as early as their toddler days. While skills do not show up in the meter right away, using skill building objects is rewarded once the toddler grows into a child. The basic skills include Logic, Cooking, Painting, Gardening, Writing, Guitar, Athletic, Handiness, Charisma and Fishing. New skills were later added in expansion packs. When Sims reach level 10 of a skill, they will get a certificate in the mail.
Each skill has a tab in the skill journal detailing the level of the skill, statistics, what the challenges are, and sometimes other special information. Various challenges are also available in the skill journal. When a challenge is completed, Sims can earn rewards. All of these rewards earn some kind of benefit, such as quicker completion, better results, etc. With the Ambitions expansion pack, the skill journal also shows hidden skills that a Sim has learned.
Many of the careers from The Sims 2, and The Sims, such as the Law Enforcement and Athletic tracks, are in The Sims 3. The careers in the core game are Business, Culinary, Criminal, Journalism, Law Enforcement, Medical, Military, Music, Political, Science, and Professional Sports. Professions in the Ambitions expansion pack include Firefighter, Ghost Hunter, Investigator, Architectural Designer, and Stylist. The part-time jobs available include such positions as a Bookstore Clerk, Grocery Store Clerk, Spa Receptionist, Spa Specialist and a Mausoleum Gravedigger. Part-time jobs have a lower pay than full-time jobs and do not give career opportunities. Part-time jobs are also available for teen Sims after they attend school. The Ambitions expansion pack also introduced professions, careers that allow the player direct control over their Sims' work and how they spend their days, and the ability for Sims to register at City Hall as self-employed in a skill career.
Sims can look for these jobs in the newspaper, the computer, or apply at the "rabbit hole" building where they would like to work. Sims are also able to make a living at home through their skills such as selling their own paintings, writing novels, playing guitar for tips, or growing fruit and vegetables. Jobs such as nectar making is also a profession with the Sims 3 World Adventures. Sims can also buy out businesses and receive a percentage of the profits they earn.
Advancing in a career still depends on mood and skills, but with the addition that relationships with colleagues/boss and even certain goals that have to be fulfilled. Players now have more control as to their Sims work, with the option to "Work Hard", "Take It Easy", "Suck Up To Boss", etc. Depending upon which of these the Sim is directed affects the performance bar. If the performance bar is maxed out, this will help to increase a Sims chances of being promoted.
A new feature The Sims 3 offers is branching careers, which allows Sims to choose a certain path in their career (such as a Sim in the Music career can eventually choose to specialize in Symphonic music or Rock). These branches are generally offered around level 6 of a career, depending on which career the Sim is working.
Neighborhoods are now being officially referred to as 'worlds', or, when moving, towns, possibly due to Electronic Arts' use of the Create a World tool and the neighborhoods scale. Worlds are now 'seamless', open to exploration between lots and are affected by a new game mechanic called story progression. The primary world in the game is Sunset Valley, while an additional world called Riverview can be obtained for free. All expansion packs to date (except Generations and Seasons) have included a world, and additional worlds can be bought at The Sims 3 Store for sim points.
The Create a World tool allows players to make their own neighborhoods with custom terrains similar to Sim City 4. A game patch, released in conjunction with the release of Ambitions, also allows players to manipulate pre-made neighborhoods to a limited degree, such as adding or removing lots and scenery. As of Late Night, worlds are divided into "Sims 3 Towns and "Late Night Towns". There seem to be important differences between the two, like the Sims they can spawn, etc. Up to now[update], Bridgeport is the only pre-made world to be cataloged as a city. The rest, including the exotic destinations from World Adventures, are considered suburbs.
On March 19, 2008, EA revealed open world, a new feature, for The Sims 3. Players can explore the world outside their Sims' homes without having to face strenuous loading times. Every house lot is now synchronized with the main neighborhood time. In previous Sims games, the time of day was separate and different for each house lot. Players can interact with every building and amenity in a city. Although players are unable to see inside of certain commercial buildings often called rabbitholes (grocery, bookstore, theater, police station, school, etc.), they are able to enter and retain limited control over their Sims' actions while in these locations. The player has complete control in some other commercial buildings – such as the gym, library and the beach house. All occupied residential buildings can be entered in the same manner as a Sims' home, provided that the buildings are not empty or it is not too late at night.
The build and buy modes have received their own makeover. The square tile outlines that appeared on the ground in previous Sims games' build and buy modes are now a quarter of their original size to give the player more liberty to place objects where they want. Alternatively, it is possible to place objects freely without square tiles, an option that was missing in previous Sims games. Players can re-color and re-pattern the furniture and other items to specific shades and patterns with the new Create-a-Style and make houses with five levels (basements of up to four floors deep).
Build mode is one of three modes in The Sims 3. It is used mainly for construction and architectural work. Some items that would be considered to be in build mode, such as counters and lights, are actually in the buy mode section. Build mode can be used to do many things including adding walls, paint/cover walls, add doors and windows, lay down flooring, create foundations and raised decks, create basements by using either foundations or the Basement tool, add columns and supports, create pools, raise and lower land, create ponds, build gardens and landscape a lot, add fireplaces, add additional floors/stories to a building, add stairs, and add a roof. Some expansion packs released after The Sims 3 add extra build mode features such as ceiling construction and designing the terrain, Players cannot build or place objects outside the limits of the lot. Walls and foundations cannot be placed within one tile of the outer limit of the lot. Fences can be placed all the way up to the edge of the lot and all structures built by the players are limited to five above-ground stories as well as four basement levels. Buildings can be modified to appear to be taller than five stories, either using shells (introduced in Late Night) or by use of the constrainfloorelevation false cheat, which disables the requirement for above-ground floors to be uniform in height and level. There will, however, still be only a maximum of five usable above-ground floors. The height of a section of wall is equal to the length of 3-floor squares. This is most noticeable while placing a 45° roof. It is possible that the length of a game tile is 1 meter, and that the height of a section of wall would then be 3 meters. In some situations, Build mode, as well as Buy mode, may become disabled, such as during a fire, burglary, or other major event. This is done to prevent modifications to the lot that may impact or prevent a game event from occurring. After the event has ended, Build and Buy modes will be re-activated. This feature has been an annoyance to many players and is disabled in many mods. Depreciation of objects is visible in The Sims 3. All objects depreciate 10% as soon as the player exits build mode. This adds realism to the game and gives the player limited tries at building before the costs of building use up too much of the funds intended for furnishing and living expenses. When in build mode, players can return items for full value by using the undo tool.
In Buy mode, the player may purchase items from the catalog, sell objects that are on the current lot, and arrange objects on the current lot. Construction-related elements such as doors, windows, fences, and stairs are not associated with buy mode, but are in build mode. Buy mode largely focuses on furniture and appliances. The descriptions of many of the objects available for purchase in the game (namely the least expensive ones) involve humor, sarcasm, insults towards the player, and wit, and serves as comic relief in the game. For example, one of the cheapest cars available in The Sims 3, the "Big Lemon", notes that although the car's doors are jammed and its ignition is faulty, it is still worth buying. Another example is the outdoor entertainment item "Foot-and-Hand Ball" used to train the athletic skill, which references and pokes fun at American football, which, despite its name, rarely involves contact with the ball via the feet. A feature that was introduced in The Sims 2 and stays present currently is the eyedropper tool. When the eyedropper tool is pointed at a wall covering, floor covering, or most objects, will show the name of what it's pointed at. Clicking on a wall or floor covering will switch to the appropriate area of build mode and select that covering so it can be applied. Clicking on an object will make an exact duplicate of it, and will focus the catalog on that object. The family inventory is a space where objects that are too large to be held in a Sim's personal inventory are kept. Certain opportunities may make an object available in the Family Inventory. When a Sim family moves, if "pack furniture" is selected, all objects in the household will be placed in the Family inventory, to be moved and rearranged in the new house.
Introduced in patch 42, blueprint mode (a subset of the build mode), allows players to choose from pre-made rooms. A player can place down blueprints anywhere furniture can go, and after "realizing" them, have the blueprints automatically laid out.
Create a World
On October 29, 2009, Electronic Arts announced "Create a World" (CAW), which is a game world editor that allows players to create their own custom cities from scratch for use within the game. Players can customize lots, choose terrain patterns and add roads, vegetation and neighborhood accents (such as water towers and lighthouses). CAW also allows players to import designs from PNG files for use in their worlds. Users can upload their worlds to The Sims 3 Exchange for download by other players. The editor tool is offered to players as a separate download (156MB), and was released on December 16, 2009 as a beta version. EA will offer technical support and updates. Players are able to share their neighborhoods as with other content. The Create A World tool is currently only available for Windows-based PCs.
Electronic Arts first announced The Sims 3 on March 19, 2008. The game was developed at The Sims Studio located in Redwood Shores, California. On January 15, 2009, EA invited "some of the best" custom content creators to their campus at Redwood Shores where they were hosting a Creator's Camp. Creators have been invited to spend the week exploring and creating content like Sims, houses and customized content. The Creators' work was used to pre-populate The Sims 3 Exchange. In the seventh expansion pack for The Sims 2, The Sims 2: FreeTime, an event occurs in which a Sim-version of Rod Humble, the head of The Sims franchise, gives the player's Sim family an unopened gift box. When opened, the family gets a computer with The Sims 3 on it. The Sims 3 game cannot be bought in the catalog. Sims can then play The Sims 3 on their computers or console systems. Like all the other games that Sims can play in The Sims 2, The Sims 3 is a looping gameplay video shown on the player's Sim's computer screens when played by a Sim. On July 15, 2008 the first video preview of The Sims 3 appeared on the official website as did seven new screenshots and five Create-A-Sim screens. Four screenshots that appeared on the website and were then taken down soon after, leaked onto the Internet by a member of the community.
Copies of the video game Spore also came packaged with fliers advertising the game, with information stating whole-neighborhood accessibility and endless possibilities on character creation. On October 31, 2008, two teaser trailers were released by Electronic Arts featuring a comical view on the 2008 presidential election in the United States. Candidates John McCain and Barack Obama were included along with respective running mates Sarah Palin and Joe Biden. In the eighth expansion pack of The Sims 2, The Sims 2: Apartment Life, new objects were added including logo posters and framed screenshots. The game was shipped with a code and an Internet address, where the player could download clothing with The Sims 3 logo on it. Another developer walk through was released on November 6, 2008, featuring in-depth previews of the neighborhood and Create-A-Sim.
On May 8, 2009, EA announced that The Sims 3 had gone gold meaning that the game had finished beta testing stage and was off for manufacturing ahead of its June 2009 release. On May 15, 2009 EA released some online interactive teaser experiences on The Sims 3 Website, including 'SimFriend', which allows users to choose a virtual Sim Friend who would email them throughout the day. 'SimSocial', which allows users to create their own Sim online, and have an adventure with them. 'SimSidekick', which allows users to surf the web with a sim. Two weeks before the game was scheduled to be released, an unauthorized copy of the digital distribution version of the game leaked onto the Internet. EA later commented the leak was a "buggy, pre-final" version. EA claims that more than half of the game is missing and is susceptible to crashes or worse. Reportedly, the title has seen higher copyright infringement rates than that of the most torrented game of 2008, Spore.
Developing Team: Bringing the Game to Life
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The development team was faced with bringing the game to life and pleasing the community of players who were familiar with the original Sims games and wanted something fresh. In order to get the community involved and bring life into a programmed world they relied on user feedback and inspiration from the real world to harness into a digital space. In order to create the animations in the game, so they look believable but goofy, they shot real life references of people doing tasks in outrageous ways until satisfied with the outcome.
This use of real world influence can be seen in the World Adventures where they have three worlds (each world represents China, Egypt, and Paris) and the Katy Perry branded expansion and stuff packs which feature Katy Perry in Sims form and an array of different items themed to candy and food.
The Sims team also brought in music artists to perform some of their songs in the language of Sims, Simlish. The music taste of Sims is just as diverse in game as it is in real life and the developers sought people from all musical backgrounds to record songs for in game. This not only brings in another real world aspect to the game but it is also an exclusive honor given to those chosen by the development team; these artists have ranged from Katy Perry, Lady Antebellum, Flaming Lips, Damien Marley, Depeche Mode, Nelly Furtado, and even Flo Rida. The recordings for the Simlish versions of the songs can also be found on the official Sims team YouTube channel, The Sims.
Story Creation for Game Play
The stories that the developers intertwine in the Sims 3, that the players then interact with, is what also makes the Sims feel more like a simulation of life. The developers understand that "one of the coolest things about the Sims 3 is that my story is part of a bigger story, the neighborhood is growing and changing around me and my characters and the story I'm telling is affected by that..." and from all of this cross story mixing comes a new player experience. These stories create immersion in the game for the players and those who play the game can start sharing some of their funny experiences in the game with people in the real world; thus bringing in players who have never even considered playing video games before.
Each character in the game that was specifically created by the developers have their own life story, wishes, dreams, and personalities. The developers spend a lot of time trying to get the world to feel seamless and the characters to feel real but they do not forget about the Sims and homes they populate the game with before release. One of the most well known and even infamous families in The Sims 3 would be The Goths, who have been written into the game's lore since the beginning of The Sims in 2000. The players have fallen in love with the mystery and lore of the Goth family and many people have taken it into their own hands to speculate on what really happened to the family.
The developers want the players to be able to take the game and make their own individual worlds, characters and stories.
In April 2009, Electronic Arts began to post billboards in many areas in advertisement for the game. Many of the billboards covered skyscrapers in densely populated areas, most notably Times Square in New York City. The costs of these billboards was estimated to be $10 million a month. This marketing campaign proved successful, as The Sims 3 sold 1.4 million copies in its first week, breaking the record for all EA games.
On March 23, 2009, the look and feel of The Sims 3 was threaded throughout the storyline of an episode of The CW series One Tree Hill. On screen, the episode opens in an idealized Sims version of One Tree Hill and then transitions into the real Tree Hill. As this episode plays out, Sims versions of popular One Tree Hill characters are introduced and then morph into the real-life characters, including Dan (Paul Johansson), Lucas (Chad Michael Murray) and Peyton (Hilarie Burton).
The Sims 3 versions of the characters are available for download via CW's official website. On April 19, 2009, Target exclusively released a promotional disc of The Sims 3 that features a Ladytron band poster, The Sims 3 theme song music download, and a $5 off coupon. The main menu includes screensaver downloads, videos, Create-A-Sim, Create-A-House, and much more. There is no actual gameplay involved, but it describes what playing feels like.
On July 14, 2010, Ford Motor began a promotion at The Sims 3 Store by allowing players to download their newest car at the time, the Ford Fiesta Mark VII. The car also came with a collection of street signs. On October 27, 2010, the download was updated to include the Fiesta Hatchback. The 2012 Ford Focus was made available to download on June 8, 2011. The car included one male Ford T-shirt, one female Ford T-shirt, a stereo, and a set of neon lights, all for use in-game. The Focus pack was available to download on Mac, PC, Xbox, and PlayStation platforms.
Music for The Sims 3 was composed by Steve Jablonsky. Scores were recorded with the Hollywood Studio Symphony at Newman Scoring Stage at 20th Century Fox. Music for the game's stereo and guitar objects was produced by others, including Darrell Brown, Rebeca Mauleon, and Peppino D'Agostino. Additional music was produced by APM Music. Two soundtracks have been released for The Sims 3 base game, The Sims 3 Soundtrack and The Sims 3 – Stereo Jams. The soundtrack includes theme music and the Stereo Jams album includes music from stereos in game. All songs on Stereo Jams are in Simlish.
|The Sims 3 soundtrack|
|1.||"The Sims Theme"||1:55|
|6.||"Aisles of Miles of Smiles"||3:00|
|9.||"Some Assimbly Required"||3:00|
|11.||"Don't Be Parsimonious"||3:01|
|13.||"Maps & Simbols"||2:57|
|The Sims 3 – Stereo Jams|
|1.||"Santa Rosa"||Vespa Sun||3:40|
|5.||"Groove On"||Junkie XL||4:01|
|6.||"Podie Tie"||Eric Pressley||3:27|
|7.||"Sta Moogie"||Eric Pressley||3:51|
|8.||"Ever Seen This"||Aceyalone & RJD2||4:02|
|9.||"Cat & Mouse"||Darrell Brown||3:02|
Software copy restriction
Some of EA's other PC titles from the same time period, such as Spore and Dead Space, used a SecuROM copy restriction scheme that requires online and offline authentication and limits the number of times a user can install the game to five. While it was speculated that The Sims 3 would use the same system, on March 26, 2009, executive producer Rod Humble revealed that The Sims 3 uses traditional disk-based copy protection as Sims 2 did and does not require online authentication to install. A product key is also required. However, SecuROM based restriction is still present within the digital version of the title, limiting users to a total of 5 authorizations for 5 different machines via online activation, each of which can be de-authorized online at any time. A legitimate serial key is required to download custom objects and Sims from the official website. This includes custom designs created by other Sims 3 players as well as additional content from EA.
On February 3, 2009, it was announced that the release date of The Sims 3 would be delayed from February 20, 2009 to June 2, 2009 in the US, and June 5, 2009 in the UK. John Riccitiello, CEO of Electronic Arts, said "In the case of [The Sims 3], we're moving this title to June 2 to give us additional time to build the worldwide marketing campaign a title like this deserves". Grant Rodiek, Associate Producer of The Sims 3 said:
The Sims 3 June launch gives more time for tuning and polish and the ability to launch the game on PC and Mac platforms simultaneously. This is a key EA franchise and title and it deserves a bigger bet on the best Sims game EA has made. These last few months will give us a little more time to tune, tweak, and polish the game. Our players have been waiting for something awesome and that's exactly what we intend to give them.
EA Singapore launched The Sims 3 with a large launch party which was held on June 2, 2009 at the new shopping mall Iluma in Singapore. At the event, The Sims 3 T-shirts were available for purchase. In Sydney, Australia on June 4, 2009 a fashion event to show off the freedom and self-expression in The Sims 3 was held by Electronic Arts Australia, and included a performance by Jessica Mauboy.
The game was released as both a standard edition and a Collector's Edition. Both the collector's edition and the standard edition of the game comes with a coupon for 1000 Sim Points to spend at The Sims 3 Store. The standard edition contains the first release of the core game, while the Collector's Edition includes the Sims 3 core game, a 2GB The Sims Plumbob USB flash drive (preloaded with wallpapers and screensavers of the game, and the main theme as an MP3 file) with matching Green Carabiner, an exclusive European-styled Sports Car download, a Prima Tips and Hints Guide (not the actual Sims 3 Prima Guide), and Plumbob stickers. Those that pre-ordered the game also got a Vintage Sports Car download, The Sims 3 Neighborhood Poster, and a quick start reference guide. A preview CD with more information about The Sims 3, such as music samples, family descriptions, and career information, was also released.
A version of The Sims 3 was released on iOS, Android, Bada, Symbian, BlackBerry OS and Windows Phone on June 2, 2009. The iPhone game works similar to that of the PC version. In Create-a-Sim, instead of Lifetime Wishes, there are personas. Personas decide which lifetime wishes your sim will have, as a persona is the largest factor in a Sim's personality. Sims start out with a small house. The house can be expanded every five sim days if the player can afford it. There are four careers in the town: biology, politics, business, and culinary. As in the PC version, Sims can also learn skills. There are nearly 75 wishes in the game. When all of them are fulfilled, Sims unlock the criminal career and have the ability to purchase a car. In some events, such as appliances breaking down, the player must play a minigame to solve or do the action. The game was updated on November 30, 2010, to add support for the Retina display of newer devices.
An expansion pack for the iOS version, World Adventures, was released on April 2, 2010. Unlike expansion packs for the PC, this is a standalone application. World Adventures adds tombs, new challenges, personas, and careers, new places to explore (Egypt, China and France), clothes and new furniture. A second expansion pack, Ambitions, was released on September 16, 2010. As with World Adventures, the game was a standalone application. Ambitions added new skills (firefighting, painting, parenting and sports), new community buildings, and the ability to have children. On November 6, 2009, EA announced the release of a vampire theme pack for the iPhone. The pack included Live it or Wear it Sets with Vampires and Werewolves, Castle and Campus Life themes. "Live it" sets contain car, furniture, decoration, wallpaper, and flooring. "Wear it" sets contain clothing, new CAS options, and hair styles.
The Sims 3 was released to game consoles on October 26, 2010, for PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and Nintendo DS and the Wii platform on November 15, 2010. The game was released for Nintendo 3DS on March 25, 2011.
The game allows the player to take on up to three friends in the Life Moments Game on the Wii, upload and download content on Xbox Live and PlayStation Network, including furnishings, houses, and player creations or experience a full life simulation on a handheld with Nintendo DS. Reviews for the game ranged from average to moderately positive. Sims can age and die, but life cycles can be disabled optionally as well. The Sims 3 features a new Karma system (similar to the influence system in The Sims 2). Sims can interact with child Sims around the neighborhood, or have children of their own. Unlike the PC version of the game, the console versions have loading times when moving from one area to another, and when accessing build / buy modes.
The PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions received mostly positive reviews. On Metacritic, it holds an average score of 77 and 76 out of 100 on the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions, respectively. Game Informer gave the 360 and PS3 versions a 9/10, praising the new Karma system and The Exchange. GameSpot gave the game a 7/10, noting that "the game lacks fluidity, but is fun in its own right." In a positive review, IGN praised the game for its controls on consoles, but said they were disappointed by the fact that there is only one town in the game, as well as bugs, including a glitch where the game will not save once a certain week has been reached.
Expansions, add-ons, editions
The Sims 3 expansion packs provide additional game features and items:
|Name||Release date||Includes||Life State||New Careers|
|World Adventures||Additions: New traits, items, clothing.
Features: quests, tomb exploration at three new destinations, photography, new build functions including the basement tool, nectar, fireworks, shops, vacation homes.
New vacation worlds: Champs Les Sims (France), Al Simhara (Egypt), Shang Simla (China)
|Ambitions||Additions: New careers, skills, traits, and items.
Features: control within work (professions and selected careers), laundry, tattoo system, skill-based self-employment.
New world: Twinbrook
|Simbot (Robot)||Architectural Designer · Education · Firefighter · Ghost Hunter · Medical · Investigator · Stylist · Self-Employed|
|Late Night||Additions: New careers, skills, traits, clothes and accessories, furniture, and cars.
Features: bars, night clubs, penthouse suites, hot tubs, subway portholes, elevators, breast and muscle definition sliders, Group, Band, Butler, zodiac signs, new swimming pool design tools, height adjustment for wall objects, fountain tool.
New world: Bridgeport
|Vampire||Film · Band Member|
|Generations||Additions: New playground equipment, mid-life crisis, new interactions, new traits, and new profession.
Features: Pranks, body hair for males, new types of celebrations (i.e. birthday/teen/bachelor parties, weddings, slumber), memories, graduation ceremonies, prom, imaginative play, potions, spiral staircases, water slides, boarding schools, pillow fights, strollers, canes for elders.
|Pets||Two editions: Regular and "Limited Edition"
Additions: New pets, new animal and sim traits, Create-A-Pet, new lifetime wishes and rewards, new interactions, new items, new venues and community locations, new pet and sim skills.
Features: Controllable animals (cats, dogs, horses) and non-playable creatures (see NPC section), pet contests.
New world: Appaloosa Plains
|Showtime||Three editions: Regular, "Limited Edition" and "Katy Perry Collector's Edition."
Additions: New stage performance careers (singer, acrobat, magician), new objects (pool table, golfing), new sim traits/lifetime wishes; Katy Perry only: downloadable stage venue, fruit-themed clothing, items, and stage props.
Features: Social features, stage decoration, singing, gigs, new 'Achievement System', Simport which allows importing and exporting of celebrity Sims.
New world: Starlight Shores
|Genie||Singer · Acrobat · Magician|
|Supernatural||Three editions: Regular, "Limited Edition" and "Origin Decor Edition"
Additions: New items (alchemy station, rocking chair), new clothing options including wings, new traits.
Features: Supernatural life states including witches, werewolves, fairies, vampires, and zombies; creation of supernatural Sims directly in Create-A-Sim.
New world: Moonlight Falls
|Vampire · Witch · Werewolf · Zombie · Fairy||Fortune Teller|
|Seasons||Two editions: Regular and "Limited Edition"
Additions: New skills (soccer/snowboard), new traits, seasonal celebrations.
Features: Weather, seasons, new outerwear clothing category, new festivals & holidays, swimming in the ocean.
|Alien||Test Subject (Aliens Only)|
|University Life||Two editions: Regular and "Limited Edition"
Additions: New skills (Bowling, Science, Photography, Social Networking & Street Arts), new traits, social groups, college sub-neighborhood, a smart phone, a new university world you enter when you enroll, and weather.
New university world: Sims University
|PlantSim||Art Appraiser · Sports Agent · Video Game Developer|
|Island Paradise||Two editions: Regular and "Limited Edition"
Additions & Features: Houseboats, resort management, island discovery, new modes of transportation on water (e.g. boating, water skiing, windsurfing).
New world: Isla Paradiso
|Mermaid||Lifeguard · Resort Manager · Scuba Diver|
|Into the Future||Two editions: Regular and "Limited Edition"
Additions & Features: Traveling to the future
New world: Oasis Landing
|Plumbot (Robot)||Plumbot Dealer · Astronomer · Plumbot Trainer|
Stuff Packs only include new items e.g. furniture, clothing, hairstyles. They do not add any new functionality to the game. Stuff Packs are compatible with both Windows and OS X as with the main game and expansion packs.
|High-End Loft Stuff||High-end furnishings, mainly technology such as televisions, video game consoles, and computers, as well as postmodern designs of bookshelves, tables, and chairs. Three items from The Sims and The Sims 2 were reintroduced to celebrate The Sims 10th Anniversary. Alternatively titled "Design and High-Tech Stuff".|
|Fast Lane Stuff||Four all‐new styles of fashions, furnishings, and vehicles: Racing, Intrigue, Rockabilly, and Classic Luxury.|
|Outdoor Living Stuff||Clothing, furnishings, and items centered on patio activities in two new styles: "Garden Terrace" features elegant wrought-iron pieces, while "Sunset on the Veranda" embraces the warmth of outdoors.|
|Town Life Stuff||New casual outfits, hairstyles, and items. Features newly redesigned venues such as a school, cafe, and grocery store; as well as new community lots including a gym, park, laundromat, and library.|
|Master Suite Stuff||Luxurious bedroom and bathroom décor centered on romance and relaxation. New contemporary furnishings and intimate apparel themed for creating romantic master suites.|
|Katy Perry's Sweet Treats||New candy-themed décor, items, outfits, hairstyles, and community lots. Features a Simlish version of Katy Perry's song "Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)". On July 15, 2013, a Community Manager for EA confirmed that this stuff pack has been retired and is no longer available on Origin. Therefore, EA will not produce any more physical or digital copies of Katy Perry's Sweet Treats.|
|Diesel Stuff||New clothing and décor from Diesel.|
|70s, 80s, & 90s Stuff||Outfits, hairstyles and items modeled on that of the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s.|
|Movie Stuff||Clothing and décor inspired from iconic movie themes and settings.|
|The Sims 3||Core game on DVD|
|The Sims 3 Collector's Edition||Core game on DVD, a Sims 3 plumbob-styled 2GB USB flash drive and an exclusive download of in-game European styled sports car|
|The Sims 3 Holiday Collector's Edition||
||Core game on DVD, The Sims 3 Christmas theme song, 6 Christmas-themed in-game items, Sims 3 Christmas-themed wallpaper and exclusive download of in-game European styled sports car|
|The Sims 3 Commemorative Edition||
||Core game on DVD, 48-page hardback book, wall poster, sketch book of artwork and access to additional in-game items|
|The Sims 3 Deluxe||
||Core game, The Sims 3: Ambitions|
|The Sims 3 Plus Pets||Core game, The Sims 3: Pets|
|The Sims 3 Plus Showtime||Core game, The Sims 3: Showtime|
|The Sims 3 Plus Supernatural||Core game, The Sims 3: Supernatural|
|The Sims 3 Plus Seasons||Core game, The Sims 3: Seasons|
|The Sims 3 Plus University Life||Core game, The Sims 3: University Life|
|The Sims 3 Starter Pack||Core game, The Sims 3: Late Night, The Sims 3: High End Loft Stuff, additional downloadable content.|
|The Sims 3 Plus Late Night||
||Core game, The Sims 3: Late Night, 1000 free SimPoints|
|The Sims 3 Plus Generations||
||Core game, The Sims 3: Generations, 1000 free SimPoints|
|The Sims 3 Plus Island Paradise||Core game, The Sims 3: Island Paradise|
|The Sims 3 Plus Into The Future||Core game, The Sims 3: Into the Future|
The Sims 3 Store
The Sims 3 Store is an online store where players of The Sims 3 can purchase and download content for their game online for additional fees. To date, unlike its counterpart for The Sims 2, The Sims 3 Store only offers exclusive objects, clothing, skins, and hairstyles not found through any other medium. The Store also offers variants of special objects found in expansions (such as laundry and hot-tubs), which offer their features for players who haven't purchased those expansions. The store is updated with new items for purchase every month. Premium content, such as the foot massage chair and wind chimes, add new gameplay or animations. The update of August 2014 is the last.
The store uses a point system in which players can purchase additional SimPoints using a credit card or Points Card, which may be purchased at retail stores or via the Origin online store. It was launched on June 4, 2009 to coincide with the launch of the game. Players can download purchased items using the game launcher or the Store Mode interface found within the game itself. When a user purchases additional SimPoints, they obtain an object in the game for buying SimPoints.
Several worlds and towns for players to play in have been published on The Sims 3 Store:
||June 2, 2009|
||September 23, 2010|
||August 25, 2011|
||February 16, 2012|
||June 28, 2012|
||August 23, 2012|
||December 6, 2012|
||February 21, 2013|
||May 30, 2013|
||September 26, 2013|
||December 12, 2013|
This is a departure from both the first and second generation of the franchise, in which new items were obtained primarily through expansion packs, stuff packs, and/or user-generation.
EA reported that in its first week, The Sims 3 sold 1.4 million copies. According to EA, this was the most successful PC game launch the company had ever had to date. According to retail data trackers Gfk Australia The Sims 3 has been the top selling game in Australia from release until June 30, 2009. Response from critics and gamers alike were generally favorable, with Metacritic calculating a score of 86/100 based on 75 reviews. PC Gamer awarded The Sims 3 a 92% and an Editor's Choice badge, calling it "The best Sims game yet". IGN PC awarded The Sims 3 an 8.9/10, stating:
This is simply a better playing Sims experience, and once you experience the freedom to hit the town without hitting a load screen you'll be hard-pressed to go back to any of the earlier games. Blowing up the size of the game was certainly a risk, but it was a sensible and overdue one, and kudos to EA for recognizing that the decade-old formula needed some growth. And while there's still plenty of room for more innovation, we'll settle for The Sims 3 for now. It delivers a solid foundation for what should be many more years of Sims sales dominance.— IGN
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