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Being a Simmer

by Ted Ryan 11 months ago in rpg
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The creative outlet when I need a breather

As a gamer, one thing that has always captivated me was a good story - or making your own! Which is why I enjoyed Sims 2 so much as a kid, but kind of drifted away from it as I got older.

It was when I was at university for my screenwriting degree that I befriended fellow Simmers and gradually warmed to the idea of returning to that game. Jumping back into the Sims, I went straight to Sims 4 and found I was still telling stories, through my gameplay.

Sims is a game I go to when I “need a breather” from my fictional characters on page, instead bringing a new set of characters to life on screen. Here are just a few reasons why I enjoy being a Simmer. Sims 4 has been the most progressive in terms of representing diversity in their character creation, which again is brilliant to build a world and families that are just as unique and diverse as reality.

I tend to create Sims that are diverse with conflicting personality traits - it would be a bit boring if all your characters were nice and happy - and look to create drama whenever I play. This game is great for LGBTQ representation and I do create these characters, either with a same-sex adopting a child or their child later pursuing a gay relationship. Straight or LGBTQ, it’s the freedom to let your characters be with whoever is something the game should be proud of in bringing this representation in the game.

Anyone who knows my work or gameplays knows I put my Sims through some complex scenarios - Like I said, I like to keep my gameplay interesting. Whether it’s affairs, secret love children, fame-hungry actors/writers or even something as simple as Sims going to university. Then I get the chance to delve into my nerdy side with vampires, aliens, spellcasters, mermaids and even having my sims use The Force!

Yes, these fantasy expansion packs have added the supernatural elements to my gameplay style. One of my longest running families had the most bizarre combination of these - One of my Sims (Erin) married her childhood sweetheart (Morgan), oblivious to Morgan getting pregnant by Erin's father - who died shortly after of "over exercising himself". Then to add more chaos, Morgan became a vampire while Erin became a spellcaster, naturally the relationship headed towards a divorce and after unwisely sending Morgan jogging in broad daylight... Erin was left to raise her vampire half-sister and ironically became the strongest spellcaster in that save file. More drama ensues when Morgan was brought back from the dead, let's just say it was a messy reunion between these three.

Vampires and Spellcasters are a common theme in my gameplay, but sometimes I stick with regular human Sims. One challenge I'm setting myself this year is to complete the Star Wars gameplay - because that was just as difficult as trying to get one of my Sims through university without failing or an unplanned pregnancy due to a college party. Yep, there has been scandal a plenty in the halls of the University of Britechester and Foxbury Institute.

I've even got a bit creative and created characters from existing franchises - Doctor Who, Harry Potter, Life Is Strange, Carmilla - and even accepted suggestions from fellow Simmers on character ideas. Having that community of fellow gamers either on Facebook or YouTube who share the same enthusiasm and simple enjoyment, it's nice having other gamers to talk with and hear their stories. The Sims franchise's dedicated and passionate fanbase made me not only fall back in love with the game, but constantly ignites my creativity on how I play the game differently each time.

Sometimes when I'm having writers block or feel I deserve a rest day from writing, Sims is always my go to for a gaming session. Because even when I'm not writing, I'm still wanting to tell a story in one way or another - no matter how insane or far-fetched it becomes.

rpg

About the author

Ted Ryan

Screenwriter/Director/Playwright/Reviewer

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