Tag Archives: The Sims FreePlay

Jerky McJerk complains his way to be everyone’s nemesis

gd sims freeplay jerky mcjerk nemesis of the state

I may or may not be nearing the end of my time with The Sims FreePlay, which I only really picked up again in September 2015 after not touching it for a good long while. I say may because I just popped the last, in my mind, feasible Achievement, which involved a lot of grinding and a solid time investment, and I say may not because, even though the remaining Achievements seem unattainable, there’s a part of me that wants to keep trying. In terms of goals, there’s really not much left for me to focus on, to grasp at achieving, and because this is a free-to-play game, restrictions abound when it comes to things like decorating your house, adding more Sims, and so on. I’d rather go play The Sims on a console or PC to get the full experience…or a fuller one via cheat codes.

First, take a look at this shiny thing, which required a lot of complaining on one man’s part, bless his terribly rude soul:

nemesis of the state achievement
Nemesis of the State: Have 1 Sim be nemeses with 16 Sims. (15G)

This took awhile. I’ve been actively working towards this goal for the last few months, and even created a specific Sim called Jerky McJerk to fill this role. That way it would be easy to track, especially once my Sims count reached over twenty, with only one Sim that everyone hated as a community. I made sure to dress Jerky McJerk in the pinkest suits ever seen to ensure I didn’t forget this man’s job in being rude and obnoxious to everyone he crossed paths with, except for toddlers and babies, as they are unaffected by impoliteness. Don’t know if that’s a hard fact or not, but I’ll believe it for now.

It’s a grindy goal, one that I often did while watching Giant Bomb or a TV show during my lunch break. Basically, I’d scan my list of villagers, see who wasn’t a nemesis with Jerky McJerk yet, send him over, and hit the “complain” interaction with them–for five minutes total, requiring about 30 interactions in the end. All without having my Windows phone’s screen time out. This resulted in me occasionally tapping the screen and checking it every few seconds to make sure all was going well. Rinse and repeat until Jerky McJerk is the bane of sixteen Sims total.

The problem was that, more or less, I had Jerky McJerk make enemies with about eight or nine people rather fast, but after them, I had to wait until more Sims were added to my town. Sometimes this didn’t happen right away because I’d rather spend my hard-earned Simoleons on buying new buildings pertinent to ongoing quests, like the stables or swimming center. It was only recently that I realized I had a decent amount of Lifestyle Points–that’s the orange currency in the pic above–somewhere around 80 or so since I never spent them. You can use these to buy new houses for rather cheap. Still, once you buy a house, you have to wait upwards of 36 hours for it to be “built,” which is why this process took so long. Good thing I’m Mr. Patience Man.

So, here’s what is left for me to accomplish in The Sims FreePlay: have my town be worth 12,000,000 simoleons, have it be worth 30,000,000 simoleons, and complete 1,000 goals. Sadly, after playing the game nearly daily for nearly five months, my town is only worth about 3,500,000 simoleons. That’s kind of harsh. I’ve not spent a single real dime, and I have to imagine that if I did plop down some digital cash my town’s worth be much higher. The “quickest” way to raise your town is to buy buildings and houses, both of which are costly and take time to complete after purchasing. Then you have to go through the long process of sending your Sims off to work every day to earn enough money to buy the next building or house, both of which go up in price the more you build. I’m not prophetic, but I think I can see the future, and it’s looking like a slow burn.

Evidently, there’s an exploit to help you boost your town’s worth by 30,000 simoleons, but it too is grindy and requires dedication. Not sure if it is even ultimately worth going after in such a manner. I’d rather hit these mile markers traditionally, and if I’m looking to complete 1,000 goals then surely it’ll happen along the way. The way could be years down the road. Also, one problem: I have no idea how many goals I’ve completed so far. Sure, sure–it’s feels like I’ve done a thousand and then some, but since there’s no stat tracking in-game, it’s impossible to tell, and I’m not about to start counting now.

I suspect I’ll keep tapping away at The Sims FreePlay for a bit more, just to see if I get any closer in a quicker fashion, but a part of me already feels ready to call this adventure dead and done. Which is strange, because I probably won’t uninstall the game right away, which means this cast of characters that I would play omnipotent being to and command they do my bidding will simply sit ignored on my phone, bereaved, with no chance of progressing. Huh, it’s kind of like when I’d play The Sims back on the PC, put a fellow in a row by himself, wait until he had to use the bathroom really bad, and then remove all the doors. Yup, I was that player.

All actions in The Sims FreePlay take time

the sims freeplay early impressions gd

Life is strange, and I’m not actually referring to the episodic adventure game about angst-fueled teens and time rewinding from Remember Me developer Dontnod Entertainment, which is definitely somewhere on my mental really-must-play list. Life is Strange, that is–I’ve already enjoyed the heck out of Remember Me. Anyways, when I started playing The Sims FreePlay, I was a married man. In fact, I named my first Sim’s dog after my then wife’s family’s dog. Still with me? At some point, I probably had intentions to recreate my true-to-life family, giving everybody their own house and fashion style. By the time I got back to it, all that had changed. Now I just hit the randomize button and go from there, though I did create and name one woman to resemble Joan Cusack.

Over the years, I’ve dabbled with a few games in The Sims franchise. My favorite was probably The Sims Social, which you experienced via Facebook and had all the annoying hooks of a social media site-driven gaming experience by pestering friends for stuff, but still let you do whacky things like plants full-grown trees inside your house. I have not yet tried planting an entire forest inside my home in The Sims FreePlay, but I suspect it can get just as zany, considering it doesn’t mind that I send both parents off to work for eight hours straight and leave a baby alone in its crib, unsupervised.

The Sims FreePlay, which is not the greatest of names, is yet another strategic life simulation game in the franchise, developed by EA Mobile and Firemonkeys Studios. Basically, it’s a freemium version of the The Sims for mobile devices, with some restrictions and other differences. You begin adding people to your town, decorating their houses, finding them jobs and hobbies, and building relationships. It’s up to you to develop them and create stories, like the one I’m slowing working towards where it is just a single woman living in a drab, non-decorated house full of cats. There’s also a Sim called Oscar Skinner who may or may not be a serial killer from a Criminal Minds episode.

Unlike console or PC versions of The Sims, your actions aren’t roadblocked by simple concepts like money. Instead, everything in The Sims FreePlay takes time. Real-life time, as the games follows the clock á la Animal Crossing: New Leaf, which means you can’t send somebody to their day job at ten at night. Trust me, I’ve tried. Actually, other than that, it’s not terribly restricting. However, this sort of mechanic is perfect for a mobile game–I’m playing on my legendary Windows 8 phone–wherein I can log in, give everybody a task to do for the next seven or eight hours, and then check back later to receive experience points and money, which we all know is stupidly called Simoleons. As you add more Sims and level up, extra houses and construction jobs cost more to perform.

There’s some other currencies to keep in mind as this naturally is a free-to-play game. Say hi to Life Points and Social Points. Both of these currencies go up much slower and in more specific intervals–like through leveling up–and you can use Life Points to help complete tasks instantly that one might feel are taking too long. Personally, I’ve only used them to bake a birthday cake to help an infant become a toddler. Life Points can be earned by completing goals, hobbies, driving around town, or can be dug up in your lawn by pets, and I don’t know exactly their purpose yet, but I have a few saved up.

I am enjoying the actions in real time element of The Sims FreePlay except for when it comes to a bunch of small tasks, like grabbing a snack, using the toilet, washing your hands, and then calling a friend for a quick chat. All of these tasks take about seven to thirty seconds each to complete and help keep your Sim’s attributes high and healthy. However, you can’t stack these actions up to happen one after another; instead, you have to hang around or remember to check in to assign the next task, which can be tedious, especially once your number of Sims begins to grow higher than four. Currently, the majority of my Sims are at work, so I don’t need to check back for several hours, though a good tip is to always leave one Sim available for miscellaneous tasks.

Besides Achievements to unlock (I’ve gotten 10 out of 20), there are a bunch of in-game goals to complete. Actually, there’s an Achievement for finishing 1,000 goals, so everything is circular. Many are easy, like “bake some cookies” or “be romantic with another Sim.” Right now, there’s even a Halloween-themed quest line involving ghosts and purple monsters, though it is timed, which is unfortunate as I doubt I’ll get it all done. These at least give you something to focus on when you can’t decide what to do with an adult Sim or it is too late to send them to work. The Sims FreePlay does allow you to spend real money on Simoleons and other thingies, but it’s not pushy about it nor have I felt constricted for not dropping some cold cash. I hope that never changes; if it does, I always have my disc copy of the original The Sims coupled with a print-out of cheat codes to sate my appetite.

Also, I’ll report back if I’m successful with my crazy cat woman mission. Don’t want to leave y’all hanging.

The Half-hour Hitbox: September 2013

half-hour hitbox sept 2013

And we’re back, for the second edition of Half-hour Hitbox. This is a new feature I debuted last month on Grinding Down wherein I touch shortly upon the videogames that I’ve touched shortly upon over the last month. See, it’s full circle and thematic and what-have-you. Sometimes I don’t get to write about every game I play or try out or give three seconds of my precious time, which stinks, as I’ve been enjoying writing about games lately. But now I have a place, a special place once every thirty to thirty-one days, where I can scribble down at least a couple of sentences and thoughts about some of these titles before they are lost to time, like tears in the rain. Don’t sue me, Ridley Scott.

And away we go…

Tekken 5

tekken5pic3

I actually ended up playing quite a bit of Tekken 5, which makes its appearance on this month’s Half-hour Hitbox a bit misleading, but whatever. When I began putting this post together, all I had done at that point was play a few rounds and marvel at the fact that you can experience the arcade versions of previous Tekken games by emulating from the main menu. But now, I’ve unlocked everyone possible via beating the Arcade mode over and over, as well as tried the “Devil Within” side story game, which is not as fun as I remember from the Tekken 3 days. You’re have a limited move list, fight the same goons one after the other, and the map and dungeon layout is so boring to the point of confusing. Wish this had volleyball or bowling…

Six-Guns

Six-Guns_Ios_960x640_Screen_5

This free-to-play game for my Windows 8 phone kind of came out of nowhere. And at first glance, it’s quite surprisingly. Like a mobile Red Dead Redemption, which, mind you, I’ve still not played despite it appearing on my annual sad-woe-is-me lists come the end of the year. You travel around the Wild West, shooting evil critters and creatures, riding horses, finding maps, collecting stuff, and doing missions for kind folks. Quite a lot here from the early look, but I’ve not yet sat down and actually played much of it to know if it is worth the effort.

World Series of Poker: Full House Pro

world-series-of-poker-full-house-pro-3

I’m not a big poker player, and if anything, I’m more likely to go a few rounds with Blackjack over at my landlord’s house using pretend money and enjoying a mixed drink with friends. I understand how poker works just fine, but I’m a terrible gambler. I never fold, just keep checking, because I like playing and being involved, and folding means you’re all by your lonesome, sitting there to watch others experience the hot action.

There’s a lot more here in WSOP: Full House Pro than just poker, but it all seems cosmetic stuff that you can really only get by playing a whole bunch of poker. Basically, you can unlock stuff for your Avatar to wear, new table and chair designs, chip tricks, and so on, to make this digital experience all the more your own. I was able to beat a pro in the single player campaign thanks to a really lucky hand of two Queens, but otherwise, I’ve had piss-poor luck and probably won’t play much more.

Halo: Spartan Assault (Lite)

Halo-Spartan-Assault-Screenshot---Banshee-Strike

I don’t even remember this. I guess I played, like, a demo for Halo: Spartan Assault. Must have been during a fugue state or something though. It’s still on my phone. I don’t know what to tell y’all.

Ascend: Hand of Kul

ascendhandofkul

Hmm. I actually quite like a lot about Ascend: Hand of Kul, and not just the part that it is free to play. At first, it seemed a bit generic, just another hack-and-slash action title that couldn’t get out of God of War‘s massive shadow, with a few spells to cast when not beating enemies over the head with clubs and stone axes. But then you begin to have human worshippers climb up on your god-size body, and you can eat them for health or throw them at bad dudes or let them shoot arrows from your shoulders. And other players can challenge your terroritory, and you have to fight them off or lose those that see you as their one true god. But, by far, my favorite thing about Ascend: Hand of Kul is its tiny text, which is impossible to read, and how it randomly freezes, forcing me to perform a hard shutdown on my Xbox 360.

The Sims FreePlay

The-Sims-FreePlay-Hack

Played The Sims FreePlay–side note, that is a horrible name–for a grand total of five minutes, just to see if it worked on my Windows 8 phone. It does, just fine. Also unlocked an Achievement for having my dog dig up something in the backyard. Woo!

Silent Hill 2

Silent-hill-2

Now that I have finished Chrono Cross and put it behind me, I can move on to another game from my list of must-beats for 2013. I’m tackling Silent Hill 2 next, as the cooling weather and looming month of October are simply perfect for exploring a mysterious, fog-heavy town full of demonic monsters that are undeniably the stuff of nightmares. Last time I gave this a go was back in 2008 during an unbearable New Jersian summer and…well. Started over from scratch and played for about an hour and a half so far, which puts James in that first creepy apartment complex full of rooms I don’t want to go in. Solved the clock puzzle and saved my game. More tonight, I’m sure.

The Half-hour Hitbox is a new monthly feature for Grinding Down, covering a handful of videogames that I’ve only gotten to play for less than an hour so far. My hopes in doing this is to remind myself that I played a wee bit of these games at one time or another, and I should hop back into them, if I liked that first bite.