Monday, March 06, 2006

The Sim Life

Meet the Evils: there’s patriarch Vanilla (that’s me wearing a black suit and purple tie), his loving wife / house slave Usagi, son Stig, and the daughter, little Satan Sue. Life sure looked good for this typically American nuclear family. Papa worked as a military recruit early in the morning and the kids, both straight A students, went to school during the day which left Usagi plenty of time for a little housework before pursuing her other interests such as reading and painting. Unfortunately, all was not beer and daffodils for the Evils. Usagi refused to sleep in the same bed as her husband and spent many restless nights on the couch, which lead her into a downward spiral. Vanilla Evil, being the progressive type of dude that he is, didn’t mind helping with the housework while she slept (alone) in their bed or sat and read quietly in their room while he cleaned and cooked, but he grew resentful at being the sole bread provider and cook and maid and the only one raising the kids. Those rotten little kids.

Actually, Stig was okay. In addition to keeping his grades up, he proved himself to be quite the guitar prodigy, entertaining family and houseguests alike. He even coaxed Usagi out of the bedroom long enough to enjoy his music before she befouled the recently cleaned bathroom and retired to her sanctum sanctorum. Unfortunately, Little Satan Sue took a page from mommy’s book. She missed school, her grades slipped, and she began pitching fits whenever asked to do anything. Once she even wet herself in the middle of the kitchen. Vanilla decided he had taken enough from the women in his family and he moved to reestablish control.

First, Vanilla made little Satan Sue stand in the corner. It wasn’t the meanest of punishments, so for an added measure he locked her in behind the stove. After starving her for a day, Vanilla took pity and cooked a wholesome meal for her, setting the stove on fire in the process. Hey, that was supposed to be Usagi’s job anyway.

With his daughter in danger, Vanilla did the only manly thing possible – he awoke his wife, gave her a few simple instructions, and then hopped in bed for an overdue nap. Usagi phoned the neighbors and invited them over for a party, then went into the kitchen and panicked as she watched her trapped daughter burn in the corner. The fire spread just as the guests arrived and joined in the panic party. The carefully arranged furniture proved too difficult for the crowd to outmaneuver (Stig didn’t help by sneaking up and scaring everyone he could), and most (including Usagi) died in the blaze.

Things looked good again for the menfolk as they began to rebuild, but it was not to be. Stig quit studying and playing the guitar and did nothing but mourn the dead, leaving Vanilla Evil to clean the mess, rebuild, and manage the household all on his own once again. Also, Stig wore a funny-looking Eddie Munster type outfit and was cramping Vanilla’s style. Loving parent that he was, Vanilla walled up Stig behind the refrigerator and played “Casque of Amantillado” with him until he died in a pool of his own urine.

Oh, by the way, I was playing my new game The Sims when all that happened. I didn’t really kill my entire family (as far as you know). It’s just that sometimes I have a little trouble remembering which of us is real and which is in the game.

Next I decided to pass on the whole family dynamic and go with the roommate setup. I created a group of women to live together who I named ~deb, Madelene, Tamar, and Leesa, four names I just randomly drew from the ether. After a bit of home design, I let them loose and quickly realized that, since I have troubles dealing with one woman at a time, four was a bit much. Besides, one of them refused to hop in bed with another one, which reminded me of the last scenario. True, it was a giant heart-shaped vibrating bed, but I really just wanted them to get some sleep. They’re on cold storage for now.

I tried the bachelor pad approach with Zorzan Manson, a guy who (thanks to the proper cheat codes) is inexplicably rich and could afford everything he wanted without working. It started well enough, dividing his time between studies and exercise and fun, but then the game decided he wasn’t socializing well and made him depressed. What kind of poor man’s Nazi revisionist way of thinking is that? Everybody knows that people who don’t need people are the happiest people. Anyway, I either need to scrap Zorzan in favor of a couple (preferably happy this time), or find a way to deal with his loneliness. I tried throwing a party, but he spent the evening chasing crowds who were having more fun than he only to have them go somewhere else without him. Nobody can clear a dance floor like poor, fabulously wealthy Zorzan.

If anybody has any suggestions (like cheat codes) for efficiently dealing with loneliness, please let me know. The socialization issue has to be improved before there’s another deadly fire destroying many innocent lives. More people could be walled in and starved. Zorzan is desperate and lonely, and his occasional pal Vanilla Evil might give him some bad ideas.

Also, if you have any suggestions you can give on dealing with the characters in the game, that would be nice.


Weary Hag said...

This is a language foreign to me. Afraid I'd just have to offer the rice recipe again - which, by the way, is authentic "Hagstyle."

Melissa said...

Sugar, we have got to get you a date.

Mel said...

I am sad to say this made perfect sense to me - I think the game is fun, I love watching the men give birth - I guess I shouldn't have so much fun creating Cletus and Brandine and their 8 kids - that damned Baby Sue - she doesn't like to study so I guess it's the walled enclosure behind the fridge - Brandine has been making eyes at Mortimer - and Cletus, pregnant with his 9th child is finding things a bit hairy.

Liz said...

Grant, slowly step away from the computer. I thought I had it bad. My advice to you again is NEVER buy Sims 2. You might never see the light of day again. Glad you are having fun.

fatty ~ said...

whos the inner you - vanilla evil?

Kira said...

I don't feel so bad now for letting unwanted Sims die in the pool by removing the ladder. Are you playing with the expansions too? I think there's three of them now. I don't have any of them, but I will one maybe over the summer when I have time to play again. Sorry, I only know the cheat codes to stop aging and get $50k.

pink said...

sounds like your getting hooked on the game.I have a timed limit of 1 houra day.But its tough to stick to.

Joe said...

Wow, remind me to never buy the Sims -- or share a room with you -- or let you babysit any children I might one day have.

Grant said...

weary hag - romance and socializing is foreign to you? Your husband will be glad to hear that.

melissa - can you just kidnap my dentist and deliver her to me?

mel - the fridge is fun, but not as good as setting the stove on fire, or the grill if you don't want to torch the indoors, or just building her a nice ched with no door if you want her out of the house.

liz - I'm sure things will normalize after a few more murders and when I can separate reality from the Sims.

aka fatty - Vanilla Evil is one of my nicknames, although I generally go by Zorzan when I'm feeling slightly less evil.

kira - I'm playing Sims 1 with all 7 expansion packs, which doesn't have the aging problem. I already know the Sim 1 money cheat code. In fact, all is well except for the socialization problem and the high death rate in town.

pink, remember that when the clock goes past twelve, it's a whole new day.

joe - don't worry about me. I love children. They taste like chicken.

~Deb said...

Okay...Again you have managed to scare me. Although your stories are so well written, the insane mind borderlines with the most intelligence. Isn't that what they said about Lucifer? Hmmmm.........Making me think here.

God bless...and be well my friend!

~Deb said...

If it weren't for Liz, I wouldn't have known this is some sort of game!

I still have hope for you my dear Grant!

AVA said...

Dude, you are good!!
I love the Sims but I still suck at it.

Grant said...

~deb - a favorable comparison to Lucifer! Coolie.

~deb again - keep hope alive. Also send money. :p

ava - thanks. I'm glad my computer game skills impress somebody.