The Sims 3: Pets
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|The Sims 3: Pets|
|Developer(s)||The Sims Studio (Windows, Mac OS X)|
Edge of Reality (consoles)
EA Salt Lake (Nintendo 3DS)
|Platform(s)||Microsoft Windows, OS X, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Nintendo 3DS|
|Genre(s)||Life simulation game|
The Sims 3: Pets is the fifth expansion pack for The Sims 3 on PC and Mac, and is the second console game in the series. It was released on October 18, 2011 in North America. Like in previous expansions for The Sims games, this expansion introduces pets such as cats and dogs and, for the first time, horses into the game.
On June 3, 2011, EA confirmed the rumors with a press release and a game trailer which was released on their Official YouTube Channel. The Sims 3: Pets expansion pack is focused around adding animals to the game. The player creates their pet in a similar fashion to the 'Create A Sim' feature. The 'Create A Pet' feature allows the player to customise their pets in various ways, including selecting a breed and a set of traits for their pets.
Unlike in The Sims 2: Pets and The Sims: Unleashed, the player can directly control pets. Pets, unlike Sims, do not have jobs (unlike in The Sims 2: Pets) or a 'lifetime wish'. Included in the expansion pack is a new town 'Appaloosa Plains'. The limited edition of The Sims 3 Pets, which must have been pre-ordered, includes a pet shop which is not be included in the normal edition of the game. It has also been proven in a patch for the game that the new creature will be a unicorn.
On June 8, 2011, Ben Bell gave a presentation and demonstration previewing Pets that was streamed over EA's website. He also answered questions regarding the Expansion Pack. The demonstration contained parts of the game that had never been seen before by the public. The event took place on Wednesday June 8, 2011 at 17:00 UTC. In their E3 hands-on preview with the Pet Creator Tool, GameMarshal was able to uncover that your pets can mate and produce off-spring, although no cross-species breeding is allowed, genetics are passed down to pet offspring, and you are able to assign unique characteristics to your pets.
Christopher Lennertz provided the original score for The Sims 3: Pets.
In Pets, there is a new town called Appaloosa Plains. The new town comes with every building in the base game, as well as new stores and shops. In the Limited Edition, the town also comes with a pet store. The expansion comes with new rabbit holes, as well as old rabbit holes with new designs. Every pet will have its own special needs. Sims can also play with laser pointers for playing with cats. Unicorns, if found, in the game are magical and can be added to a sim's household. They can set things on fire, teleport, curse or bless sims. They can breed with both unicorns and horses. Sims up into their teenage years can ride horses. Dogs can swim in swimming pools, but they can not drown, as pets can only die by old age. A user can have up to 6 pets in one household. This also extends the maximum amount of sims in a household from 8 to 10.
There are new professions for sims such as "Horse Handler". Pets also comes with wildlife, but they cannot be added to households. There are also ways for sims to interact with their pets. Players can use their horses as a form of transportation. Sims can adopt and bathe pets. They can also have dogs and cats go around town and sniff for collectables. These collectables can be sold or stored in terrariums. Pets can learn skills. Cats and dogs can learn to hunt, dogs can learn to locate collectibles, and horses can learn racing and jumping. There are over a hundred breeds of dogs and cats. Players may have a poodle with short hair, or you may also have a Poodle with Dalmatian spots. Pets can meet, fall in love and reproduce. They can try to have puppies, kittens, or foals, and will also have family trees. Players can adopt horses and train them to run in races. The PC version will be bundled in a package with the base game as The Sims 3 Plus Pets.
There are three main Pets which can be further customized in create a pet mode. These pets are the usual cats and dogs, also, there is a new addition to the game which are horses. In The Sims 3 Pets, there are many more pets that you can collect such as birds, snakes and mice. There is the occasional raccoon which tips over your dustbin and a Deer which can only be watched or pet. At night, there are unicorns which appear and can be interacted with. However, these will disappear in the morning.
Create a Pet
In Pets, players are able to create, customize and control over a hundred different kinds of cats and dogs and can breed and share them with friends. Create a Pet and Create a Sim are all in one mode, with different dressing room backgrounds. Players can customize the pet's coat, shape, pattern, and color. They can change the ears, tail, snout, eyes, and much more. Pets allows players to go even further than customizing their pet's look. A pet's behavior patterns and traits are also fully customizable. There is also an Advanced Mode for the Create a Pet mode. In it, users can put different layers on the body of their pets, such as dots and/or stripes. Pets have the same age sliders that were introduced with Generations. There is no height slider for pets, due to animation conflicts in the game. Players not only get to choose the dominant pattern but they also get to pick an accessory pattern and both can be colored. In horses, the mane and tail color are independent of the main color of the horse. Players can also add colorful markings on their fur and slide them around on their Sims' pets bodies. Markings are also in layers and can be placed in any order.
Dogs can be obtained when created with the household, or can be adopted by computer or cell phone after the household has already been created. Sims who are giving them away will also put an advertisement in the newspaper. Sims will occasionally encounter stray dogs. These dogs can be befriended and adopted by the player. Most popular dog breeds are offered in the game. Breed has nothing to do within gameplay except the appearance of offspring. The reinforcement social system is used to correct bad behaviors and to praise good ones. Getting by with no punishment for bad behavior can lead a dog to take on that trait. Both dogs and cats can obtain fleas while outdoors. These make them very uncomfortable, and they can pass them to other pets and sims. When grown up, adult dogs can learn tricks, guard the house, and hunt for objects. They can be taught six tricks: sit, sit up, play dead, roll over, speak, and shake. Dogs can also be taught to hunt. They cannot learn on their own, but if taught, they can sniff out gems, metals and bones.
As with dogs, cats can be either created with the household or adopted later on in the game. The breed of cats does not matter in gameplay, although many popular breeds are also offered. Scolding and praising a cat will influence the traits it will develop. Like dogs, cats can also hunt. Cats can learn how to hunt using a toy from the animal toy box, unlike dogs, they can not be taught to hunt by their owners. Cats can hunt small pets. Unlike dogs, they cannot sniff out gems, bones, or metals, but have the ability to fish.
Horses can be created with the household, adopted using a computer or telephone, or bought from the Equestrian Center. Horses usually die of old age, but fires and meteors can kill them as well. The Jockey is the sole horse related Lifetime Wish in the Pets expansion. To accomplish it, the player will need to max the riding skill as well as earn 40,000 simoleons from your horses (racing, sales, stud services, etc.). Horse breeds do not affect sale price. Horses can learn two skills – racing and jumping. Wild horses appear in herds (usually of two or three, depending on neighborhood size) in home neighborhoods, but not in exotic destinations such as Champs Les Sims. Wild horses can be befriended. It's easier to befriend them if the Sim has a high (hidden) Wildlife skill. Horses are the first non-"human" Sims to have their own occult status, appearing also as unicorns. Horses and unicorns can breed together, with a chance of the offspring also being a unicorn. Unlike cats or dogs in the game, horses can be sold. The higher the horse's skills and the more money they have earned racing means a larger amount of money they can be sold for. Elderly horses can be sold. Horses can ONLY be found in the PC/Mac version of the Pets Expansion Pack. Also, horses can be bred at the Equestrian Center.
The player can find other pets, such as birds or snakes. These pets will not do as much as the other pets, however, and will just decorate your house with cages.
Appaloosa Plains is the name of the new town in The Sims 3: Pets. It is set to be a ranch style town with new farm and barn style items in Build and Buy mode. The new location is set in a beautiful Midwestern ranching town nestled between lush green hills, where players can let their dogs and cats run loose in the park or spend time riding horses at the equestrian center. Players will be able to build their own stable on residential lots. There are new versions of the grocery store, hospital, theater, bistro, stadium, school, spa, equestrian center, cat jungle gym, and parks. There is also a small Dive Bar, however it requires the Late Night expansion pack. Appaloosa Plains was a cowboy ranch town in the Midwest of the United States on the edge of the highway, and is named after the Appaloosa breed of horse. On the edge of the town can be found a dinosaur skeleton where dogs can collect bones and search for treasure.
At one point Appaloosa Plains was a sleepy ranching township, its only claim to fame being a garish tourist trap that drew in the occasional passerby. However, a recent influx of city slickers has turned the area into a bustling hub of activity. They keep arriving with their stacks of Simoleons, retrofitting the town with modern amenities while eagerly believing they've acquired their own slice of country paradise. The clash between the old and new is readily apparent, with some elderly die-hards clinging to the remaining vestiges of life as they knew it. Will the town come together in the new era of prosperity, or will the generational clash leave a clear line drawn in the sand?
As with Sims, players are able to choose traits for their pets. However, unlike regular Sims, a player can only select up to 3. Sims can train their pet behaviors through the pet doing related action to the trait or praising/scolding them. If the pet has been trained well enough they can develop a "trained" trait. The difference between the usual pet trait is a highlighted green box around the trait icon. Trained traits can be lost if a Sim trains their pet the opposite behaviors. It is possible for a pet to have more than 5 traits. Since Horses are not featured in the console version, all pet traits that are exclusive for horses will not be available on the console version. Pets created in Create a Pet can have up to 3 traits. If the player buys the Attitude Adjustment Lifetime reward they can add 2 more traits, in which the total number of traits is 5. If a pet with more than 5 traits moves to another world, they will lose all their "trained" traits. Only the first 5 traits on the pet's bio list will still remain.
Upon release in North America, The PC and Mac versions of The Sims 3: Pets got positive reviews, with IGN rating the game 7.5/10. The console version (360, PS3), also getting a similar score, with IGN giving it a rating of 7/10.
There has also been some issues regarding user-created mods that stopped working properly on the expansion pack. This has been attributed to the developers switching to an in-house animation engine from the proprietary Granny 3D toolkit that they used in the earlier versions of The Sims 3. There are also some problems regarding glitches in the game. Some reported are, problems creating a pet, problems involving graphics, and frequent crashing. The crash issues are not helped by there being no log file from which to trace the cause of the crash leaving players to randomly and blindly apply fixes that frequently fail.
- Official Announcement Trailer for The Sims 3 Pets
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