The Sims 3 is a curious game. Over five years after its initial launch, and now only a few months from the release of the next installment, the life simulator juggernaut still continues to command fanatic loyalty. While it is definitely a blast creating a Sim and guiding them through that journey called Life, I thought it could be interesting, (and possibly hilariously entertaining) to conduct an experiment. What kind of experiment, you ask? Well, it’s two-fold in a way. The overt purpose would be to find out if four random Sims, all with a love of music and talent with a specific instrument, could come together and form one of the greatest bands the SimWorld has ever known. But, on a more subtle level, it would focus on how closely the life in the Sims could mirror real life.
During this experiment, I’ll be focusing on a few different questions, such as: How much outside influence would this ragtag bunch of miscreants need in order to lead them to one another, as well as set them upon the path of drugs, sex, and rock & roll? Would they experience the loss of bandmates, either through burnout, break up, or a SimDrug bender gone bad? Would they experience the Yoko Ono treatment? Would they be able to live normal lives while fulfilling the needs of the band, or would the band become their only existence? The answers are most definitely out there, and I intend to find (and share) them through a series of stories and updates, detailing the current progress of these Simlish virtuosos. With any luck, I’ll end up with a memorable experience, and more than a few laughs. So, before the groupies start to get restless, let’s turn this thing up to 11 and get started.
Week 1: Dreams
Day 1: The Beginning
A new day. The dawn casts its muted glow over hills awash in grey monotony. Bridgeport – A land crying out for color, for life, and most importantly, for great tunes. It yearns to be a place of opportunity, of dreams, of desires held close to the heart. And, though the inevitable continuation of the dull and dreary is all but nigh, deep down within the very soul of the town is a small grain of light, its pleasant glow barely managing to keep the shadows of despair at bay. What is this light? It is only a simple wish, a wish for four fresh souls, eager to rock out. Hold tight to that wish, fair city. Deliverance is at hand…
Before I created my four Sims, I laid myself some ground rules to follow over the course of their lifetimes. First and foremost, I would try to keep my interaction with them limited, unless certain opportunities or scenarios arose that required my intervention. This included making sure each Sim began to learn his or her respective instrument, sending them towards the same general area for that first initial meeting, forcing them to talk to each other in case they decided to torpedo the experiment from the get go, and other “maintenance” type controls. Beyond that, I want to leave them to grow and live on their own – whether that means forgoing band practice in favor of an all night party, going fishing instead of heading to a gig, or even dying in a fire. Will this approach work? I have no idea, but I’m expecting a fair bit of entertainment regardless.
Now, the first step to all of this is creating the Sims themselves. I wasn’t really going for a unified appearance for this band, so I simply clicked randomize appearance, and went with what fate delivered. I wasn’t disappointed.
Lead Guitarist: Farrah Knox
Despite having a name that a porn star might consider, Farrah is already kicking things off in the most awesome way. With only a few clicks of the randomize button, I arrived at this gem of perfection – complete with the red “rooster crest” hair, Snooki-esque makeup, and genuine Pink Zebra hide dress. It was if the game was sensing my thoughts, channeling my desires that my Sims have that edge of crazy that makes everyone laugh. So far, so good.
I will be tweaking their characteristics a bit. I’d like them to focus on the highly technical term of “band stuff”, so each Sim will have the Artistic and Virtuoso traits. The other three will be whatever the SimGods have seen fit to bestow. In Farrah’s case, she seems perfectly suited for lead guitarist with Party Animal and Charismatic. Though, I’m not sure what impact Angler will have… With a Lifetime Wish of Rock Star, and a favorite food of hot dogs, she was all set to head out into the world.
Bassist: Pete Hopper
Meet Pete Hopper. Just look at that suave, bearded bastard rocking that bowler like nothing less than the boss he is. Or, the hipster that he was before it was cool. Whatever the case may be, his gingerness brings both a touch of class and a hint of crazy that all truly epic bass players must have. His traits, on the other hand, are…interesting to say the least.
He’s a clumsy, overly excitable, hopeless romantic hipster. Pete is definitely a special guy. For his Lifetime Wish, I chose to go with Hit Movie Composer – still on the music path, and just as likely to be part of a band, but perhaps this will be a source of conflict within the band down the road. Only time will tell!
Drummer: Robi Duboise
Now I know the game is in this with me 100%. Why? Because of Robi Duboise, the French, black, emo drummer who will for sure go down in history as one of the craziest dudes who has ever lived, in the SimWorld or the real word. How can I say this before I’ve even finished creating him? Look at these traits! With the exception of Artistic (I got rid of Green Thumb for it), these were just waiting for me – the perfect combination of crazy, lewd, and musical genius to earn him a spot in the annals of history. He probably ripped those jeans on his barbed-wire mattress, or on the beaks of the pigeons he wrestles with every day.
If he doesn’t throw a TV into a pool and start at least five fires, I’m going to be upset. I gave him the Rock Star Lifetime Wish, but I won’t be surprised if he ends up Jimi Hendrix’ing it well before such a wish is fulfilled.
Keyboardist: Claudia Rodriguez
Rounding out the band is Claudia Rodriguez, a girl who seems much too cute and innocent to be caught in the same room as Robi “I’ll Swallow Your Soul” Duboise, let alone be in a band with him. But, perhaps she’s one of those people whose inner-selves are completely different from their outward appearance.
Though, based on the fact that she’s a shy, neat vegetarian whose Lifetime Wish is being surrounded by family, I’m thinking not. Maybe she has a lot of inner turmoil, and can only express it through the majesty of song? Or, perhaps her melodious notes will be what it takes to soothe the savage beast that is Robi. Whatever the outcome, this is the hand that fate has dealt me.
Will our future lay somewhere in front of a crowd of screaming fans, or in the back of an ambulance, needle hanging out of our arm? Let’s go find out, shall we?