Tuesday, November 13, 2007


I don’t consider myself an addicted pc or play station gamer. I appreciate it as it plainly serves me entertainment, but there are just selected games in my mind right now that I think have rendered me sleepless nights. Usually when the story ends, or you’ve killed whatever you have to, the games end with it.

Also as a child, I admit I had my own collection of Barbie Dolls. Every time my father would go out of the country, I would always advise him to get the latest doll in the market. I’ve been through the role playing thing like I was the director and my dolls are my actors. I even bought Ken to make the love triangle complete. I’ve roughly collected more than 20 Classic Barbies at that time, but I grew out on it.

It seems these typical gaming devices or instruments just come and go according to time, present interests and fad but there is one that I would consider riding at the top of my list, probably for all time. You might have heard of it. You might have already played it. I’m talking none other than the SIMS.

I was introduced to this game on PC when I was in college. It was introduced to me by my gaming comrade and college bud Vanessa. I remember it was on a Friday night, being a really introvert as I am on Friday nights, I was at home thinking on how I’d spend it. It ended up installing the game and playing it.

At first, I was amazed at the challenge it imposed, like making a virtual house from scratch. It took time getting used to the tools and commands, but it was bearable. I was more excited to create people, or the characters in the game, not exactly on my likeness, but graphically enhanced replica of people including choosing different skin color and different wardrobes. Suddenly the idea of creating a virtual or 3D community is very appealing, and certainly diverse from other RPG and war games.

I’ve ended up making them stay alive by letting them cook, perform normal human day to day activities and much more increase their skills in different areas such as cooking, logic, creativity and the like. These characters, depends how you mold them, have different personalities and either could be successful in their respective occupations. A character you groom to be good in cooking can never get promoted to a medicine career, or vice versa. IN terms of personality and decisions, the game presents it all, which is the amazing part. Although they incorporate human emotions of getting nasty there are some ethical programming rules they are limited to like committing suicide and the like.

As the game evolved, and as I evolved as an adult, I’m still happy to admit that I still enjoy playing it. It’s not a simple game to me anymore; actually the game doesn’t have any fixed goal. It’s more of a therapy to me, an adult doll-house as they would say. After work without control over deadlines or having a gloomy day, SIMS might be able to melt it all away because there you have the proper venue to regain control and to become GOD. J I don’t know if it’s a bad thing or a positive thing, but so far it has done me wonders.

It is also quite logical that male gamers do not adhere to this stuff pretty much. For some male friends I’ve surveyed, they find it boring and lacking in excitement. It’s all about people, interactions and relationships. There is nothing exciting on a pc game on instructing your character how to increase his/her logic by playing chess. But by reception it is widely accepted and followed by female pc gamers, who are the inferior market in terms of sexes when it comes to visual games. In fact, female gamers (me included) account for 50% of sales (Wiki).

As SIMS expand to more game situations, whether it may be on dating, university or outdoor life, I just feel that this game is a great opportunity and educational tool for others to improve their patience, graphical skills, interactive skills and decision making skills. Now this is a game that everyone could enjoy minus the gore, the extreme fantasy and the violence most games offer.

No comments: