Is The Sims Social really worthy of The Sims name?

Published September 21, 2011

So, who has tried out The Sims Social?

I’m just starting to use Facebook more as their battle with Google+ heats up, so that I can see who is winning and who is losing. Then they went and introduced my favourite ever game as a Facebook game.

It’s not really the same Sims at all, nothing like it, really, and it’s very, very… social. That might sound crazy, given that it’s called The Sims Social - but I’m finding that you can’t do very much without interacting with neighbours - neighbours that I don’t really have yet and don’t know the etiquette for getting.

I always assumed that The Sims was the opposite of a social experience, given that you spend hours building a fake world and directing the life of an avatar so as to avoid any actual interaction with human beings. Or was that just me?

I haven’t had time to play the Sims in a while but every now and then I get a craving for a bit of God-like control over my creations. I never even got round to upgrading to The Sims 3 - although I think I’ve talked before about my distaste of the idea of gameplay going on without my knowing about it. That’s the one thing that puts me off The Sims 3, although part of me also thinks I’m saving it for a rainy day.

Anyway, the team behind The Sims are trying to keep relevant and with no Sims 4 on the horizon, and only Medieval and Pirate oddities to add to the franchise, it seems like they’re going with Facebook for the forseeable future.

It’s also another one of those games that allows you to do so much in one sitting and then you either have to wait 24 hours for some more points or open your wallet and buy them. I’ve seen a few of these - particularly now that the iDevices support in-app purchasing. It’s quite a tricksy way of getting money out of players, but equally, if you don’t want to pay, I guess you just wait.

The Sims has always had an element of waiting involved anyway. Waiting for your Sim to grow up, or to finish studying cooking, or practicing yoga. Perhaps it is not so different after all.

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