While I’d never classify myself as a gamer per se, casting my mind back to important and not-so important events in my life, I realize games have ALWAYS been there. Waiting for the gigantic, claw-footed bathtub to fill in the 100-year-old farmhouse I grew up in? Fire up a game of Q-Bert. Attending a new school and looking for something fun to do with newly-made friends? Bond over the supreme aggravation that is Super Mario 2 (the All Acid Trip Edition.) At a party with a bunch of drunken jerks who think you can’t whup their butts at Donkey Kong Country? WHUP THEIR BUTTS AT DONKEY KONG COUNTRY! Then discover the Sims in your late 20s and cease all productive activity for roughly the next year and a half.
Ahhh, those early, halcyon days of Sims discovery; what a precious time between a girl and her PC. As I mentioned, I didn’t come by the Sims until my late 20s, when, accompanying my husband on trips to the local gaming emporium, I’d inevitably drift over to the PC section, where colourful boxes bearing decorations and housewares and furnishings for tiny little simu-people beckoned me with their possibilities. That was actually the Sims 2, at that time the latest, priciest release; a bit of an investment in the unknown, in other words. And so Mr. Finger Candy set me up with an inexpensive edition of the complete collection of Sims 1 games as a bit of a test, which I must have passed with flying colours, because you couldn’t tear me away from my laptop for the next 36 hours, and then for about the next two years after that. I eventually went on to RULE the Sims 2, creating a gigantic, custom desert town filled to the brim with kooks and other weirdos, and then the Sims 3, where I’ve been playing the same family of turquoise-skinned fairies for the past two years.
But first came the Sims 1 and a bit of a fun story. When I first began playing the Sims, I had no idea how the mechanics of the game actually worked. I rather incorrectly thought it was a Tamagotchi-type of setup – you set the parameters of their lives and personalities, give them a home and the rest just does itself. So I noodled around for a bit, creating a disparate family of an elder, tweed-covered librarian by the name of Fusty Pants, a young boy in short pants named Nigel and a lady of the evening named Taystee. They had a combined 20,000 Simoleans between them, which I sunk into a 20,000 Simolean house that had no table, TV, sofa or beds. Then, leaving the game up and running on my computer, I went out to the livingroom to watch a two-hour movie with my husband.
I think we can all guess where this went, right? When I returned to Fusty and Co., I walked in on pure chaos. With no beds or a sofa on which to catch a nap, Fusty, Nigel and Taystee were forced to simply pass out on the front lawn or, in Taystee’s case, in a pile of fly-covered garbage in front of the empty refrigerator. Because they were all such exhausted, starving, filthy nutcases, Fusty ceased going to work at the library and was fired, Taystee starved to death and wee little Nigel was taken away by the social worker. How do you say “Reset” in Simlish again?!
These nails are inspired by the Sims’ logo, and Plumbobs, the little green diamonds that float above their heads as mood indicators. Well, green if your Sim is in a good mood. Red if they’re Fusty, Taystee and Nigel. 😉