The Sims: Vacation (PC)
Full Strategy Guide

Document written by PyroFalkon (
Current version: 3.0a
Last update: 25 December 2002


v3.0a (25 December 2002)
No new information, but I've changed my legal info. I'm now carrying my guide
on my own website; you can find the URL at the bottom of the document.


 1. Intro
 2. Creating a family
    a. Attributes
 3. Buying a lot and building a house
    a. Build Mode, and tips for building
    b. Buy Mode, and tips for buying
    c. the Option gump
 4. Taking care of yourself
    a. Hunger
    b. Comfort
    c. Hygiene
    d. Bladder
    e. Energy
    f. Fun
    g. Social
    h. Room
 5. Taking care of others
 6. Money
    a. Jobs
    b. Arts and Crafts
    c. Other Money Tips
 7. Skills
    a. Skill Gain Rates
 8. Sim Love
    a. Having and Greeting Visitors
    b. Interests
 9. Astrological Signs
    a. Aquarius
    b. Pisces
    c. Aries
    d. Taurus
    e. Gemini
    f. Cancer
    g. Leo
    h. Virgo
    i. Libra
    j. Scorpio
    k. Sagittarius
    l. Capricorn
10. Downtown
    a. Having a date or friend with you downtown
    b. Constructing buildings
11. Vacation Island: The New Area of SimCity
    a. Having a date with you on vacation
12. Throwing Parties
13. Kids
    a. Babies
14. Disasters
    a. Death
15. Other Events and Rumor Killers
16. Strategies
    a. PyroFalkon's Alpha Strategy
    b. Money Strategies
    c. Relationship Strategies
    d. Other strategies and short tips
    e. Strategies Submitted by Readers
17. Customizing your sims
18. Cheat Codes
19. Unconfirmed Information

20. Contributor List
21. Version History
22. Legal Info
23. Contact Info

||1. INTRO||

Ah, The Sims, a classic game by SimCity creator Will Wright. Vacation is the
fourth expansion for the game, and it adds a whole crapload of new happy
features. I'll cover as much as I can here, assuming that you know nothing
about any of The Sims series. If you've already played it, but haven't played
Hot Date or Vacation yet, head to the Sim Love section. Maxis changed the whole
spectrum of relationships this time around, so getting dates is a bit
different; not harder, just different.

This FAQ will cover every aspect of The Sims, from your sims' births to their
deaths and everything in between. However, because I don't want to ruin the
game for anyone, it will not contain detailed item lists and whatnot. Part of
the fun of this game is exploring your options; I'm just pointing you in the
general direction.

Okay, enough of that. Away we go!


Once you get past the title screen and all that, you'll come to a view of the
neighborhood. There may be a few houses scattered around, one of which has a
big flashing arrow. That's the tutorial house, and I recommend you play it
before leaping into The Sims. Of course, you don't have to, and I cover in this
FAQ pretty much everything it says in the tutorial.

Across the top are a few buttons. The one you're interested in is the left-most
of the center group, the one with a few people on it. Click that and you'll be
taken to a screen that lists all the families that are not currently in houses
(I call this the barracks; what can I say, I'm a fan of Worms: World Party).
Click an empty line (or the button with a few people and a plus sign) to create
a new family.

You'll be prompted to enter a last name. For my examples, I'll refer to my
primary family that I've got going here... so, type in the last name that suits
you. In my case, "Falkon."

After that, click the button that lit up: the top one of the group of three.
Here, you'll get to personalize your first character. The simplest thing listed
is at the top, the first name. Obviously, "Pyro" goes here for me.

Next, you need to enter your character's attributes.

|2a. Attributes|

The attributes are divided into five catagories: Neat, Outgoing, Active,
Playful, and Nice. You can assign up to 10 points to any attribute, but you
have a total limit of 25 points.

NEAT indicates how environmentally-conscious your sim is, and what the chance
is of it doing cleaning actions automatically. If it's set to max, then your
sim will always clear the table and flush the toilet when finished eating and
doing their business, respectively (at least, I HOPE it's respectively). A
minimum rating of zero will make your sim a complete slob who doesn't mind
being in its own filth. This rating has an indirect effect on the Room bar; see
the Mood Bars section for details.

OUTGOING indicates how well your sim gets to know others. If set to 10, it
makes friends easily; if set to 0, it makes friends as easily as a corpse. This
rating has an indirect effect on the Social bar.

ACTIVE indicates how much your sim likes to move around. A high rating means
that it would rather play basketball, for example, than watch TV. A low rating
means just the opposite. Also, the rating directly affects how long it takes
for that sim to get up after it wakes up. A sim with an ACTIVE rating of 10
will literally leap out of bed. A sim with a zero rating will take one full
game hour to get out of bed once it wakes up.

PLAYFUL indicates how much your sim prefers games over serious things. This,
combined with ACTIVE, gives you an idea of what your sim wants to do with
itself to get its Fun mood up. Again, check out the Mood Meter section for

NICE indicates just how well your sim gets along with others. This, combined
with OUTGOING, affects the way your sim makes friends.

Once you have your attributes set, check out the series of seven buttons to the
right. The top two affect whether the sim is a child or an adult. Families
should have at least one adult, since children can't get jobs to earn money.
Below that are three buttons that change your sim's skin tone from light to
medium to dark. The bottom two set its gender; the one on the left is for
males, the one to the right is for females.

Once you have your sim's age, skin tone, and gender set, take a look at the
arrows that flank your sim's head and body. Using those, you can scroll through
the available choices of heads and clothes (called skins). Don't worry so much
about the clothes since those can be changed in-game, but once you choose a
head, it's locked in for eternity.

The attributes are almost permanent once you set them, so make sure you think
carefully before you confirm your choice.

At the bottom of this screen is a section where you can write a bio. It's
totally optional, but I think it's fun to give my sims backstories.

To confirm your choices, click the Done button. You'll be taken back to the
family screen where you entered the last name. You can add up to seven more
family members for a total of eight, but you have to be careful. The more
people you have, the faster you earn money, but the more maintenance you pay.
If this is your first family, I'd stick with no more than two.

For my strategy (outlined in a later section), I use three adults: Pyro,
Stephanie, and Pete. Well, Pete isn't the name I call him on my game, but I
doubt CJayC will allow me to use that word on an FAQ, so it's good enough for

In the bios, I declare Pyro and Stephanie to be married, and Pete is Pyro's
brother. Now, there is no "official" way to set any relationship; I could
consider the Falkons to all be siblings if I wanted, or all be married to each
other, or both. Of course, since I'm normal, I'm just sticking with a simple
marriage with a tag-along brother.

If you make a mistake on a family member, you can click that sim, then the
bottom button of the Create Family screen to edit him or her. If things go
horribly wrong, you can click the sim, then the middle button to end its life
before it even begins. Once you're satisfied with your family, click the done
button on the Create Family screen, but remember that you can never come back
to the Create Family screen again to edit anyone.


On the family select screen, click the family you just made, then the button in
the bottom-right (a family with an arrow pointing to a house). You'll be kicked
back to the neighborhood screen where you can select which lot you want to buy.
You have to buy a lot that does not have a family already there, but you CAN
buy one if it already contains a house. However, I like building houses (and
it's cheaper that way than buying a huge house off the bat). The more people
that are in your sim family, the less expensive the lot you should buy. It's up
to you, of course, but there's no reason to make this too hard if it's your
first time.

If the lot you want is taken by a family and/or a house, you can evict the
family and/or bulldoze the house to clear the lot. To do so, click the button
at the top of the screen with a bulldozer. Your cursor will change; click the
lot you wish to clear after that. If there's a family there, you'll be asked if
you want to evict them. Doing so sells all of their house objects (everything
but walls, carpets, and wallpaper), then throws them and their money into the
barracks. Either way, you'll then be asked to bulldoze the house. If you agree,
the lot is slaughtered. Trees and hills stay as they were, but the walls,
carpets, and roofs will be no more.

Make sure your family is selected, then click the lot you wish to move into.
All families start with §20,000 (simoleans), and once you buy the lot, the cost
is automatically deducted from your account.

|3a. Build Mode|

After the game loads, your family will be standing near its mailbox beside the
empty lot. There's a whole mess of buttons here, but this section of my FAQ
covers building the house, so let's worry about only the bare essentials for
now. Off the bat, click the small button that's fifth from the left; it has
three dots horizontally through the middle of it. That's the option gump, and
what you need to click is the disk icon in the top-left corner of the group of
six. That's how you save the game, and I seriously suggest you save it
immediately. If something goes horribly wrong during the construction of the
building, you can always load and not have too many problems.

Once it's saved, click the third button from the left of the main five; it
looks like a house. That takes you to Build Mode, the place you go to construct
your house.

The two buttons on the far left of the gump that just appeared are Undo and
Redo. Let's ignore those for now, since you haven't done anything yet. The
first tool for house construction is the wall tool, which is located in the top
row, third from the left. Click that, and you'll get a long list of choices for
everything relating to walls. The wall itself is the very first item, and it
costs §70 per section, which can add up to a crapload of money.

To create a wall, simply click-and-drag across the landscape wherever you want
the wall. To quickly make a room, you can hold SHIFT as you drag, and it will
make a rectangle for you. To undo a mistake, either click the undo button
(which also returns all your money), or hold CONTROL and click-drag (which only
returns half the wall cost).

You can't blow your remaining money on your house alone since you'll need to
end up buying things like toilets and refrigerators, so try to cut corners
whenever you can. The bathroom is really the only room you need to keep
isolated; you can combine the living and bed rooms for now.

Your rooms should not be more than 5 tiles by 5 tiles, but that doesn't mean
you can't have an "invisible" wall. Check out this crappy ASCII art to see what
I mean...

|     |     |
|     |     |
| KIT | LVR |
|     |     |
|     |     |

Now, this is two rooms that are 5x5 each (count the dashes, not the actual
distance). The one marked KIT is the kitchen, and the one marked LVR is the
living room. This is a good starting setup, but it can be improved by one
little change...

|           |
|           |
| KIT   LVR |
|           |
|           |

Now the wall that separated the two rooms is gone, saving you §350, which is
enough to buy a burglar alarm and a phone with enough left over for a meal. If
you absolutely must have that center wall, you can always add it later. This
early in the game though, every single simolean counts.

I recommend that you make the bathroom no more than 3x4, and the bedroom no
larger than the standard 5x5. Again, this is ALL temporary; you can extend and
expand to your heart's content once you have the money.

To help you with the view, check out the buttons that are just above the clock
on the left side. Those are the various wall views you can use. From left to
right: first story / second story, roof view, walls up, walls cutaway, and
walls down. Don't worry about the story selection since you haven't even built
the ground floor yet. While building walls, I just leave the walls down. It
lets you see your design clearly without having to rotate the view or anything
like that.

If you do want to rotate or zoom the view, you can use the buttons in the
bottom left: the two curved arrows, and the plus and minus arrows. Play around
with the views as much as you want; time is frozen in Build Mode.

You now need doors for house. The tool for this looks amazingly like a door;
just click it and you'll get a list of door styles. The doorless frame for §150
is perhaps the most functional of them all, since your sims don't have to waste
time opening doors all day. Of course, I always put closed doors around the
bathroom; even though it makes no difference in practice, I don't think my sims
would appreciate being spied on during their moment of privacy.

Anyway, set up your doors however you see fit. Make sure you don't forget to
get a door on every room, but remember that you don't have to connect *every*
room to *every other* room. Also make sure you put a door on an exterior wall;
that will be your front door. Any room will do, but the bathroom is not
recommended unless you want all your visitors to get peeks of sims in showers.
(Note to self: make an all female sim family and test out this method of door

You can now add windows, wallpaper (which covers both interior and external
walls), and flooring, but I recommend against all of it for now. However, I'll
tell you how to mess with it, whether you're doing it now or later.

Windows are added like doors and can even go on interior walls, although I fail
to see why you would want to do that. The smaller the room is, the less windows
it needs to be fully lit. A 5x5 room only needs two windows max.

By the way, some doors have windows in them and do add to the light in a room.
They tend to be more expensive, but it's your choice.

Carpet can be chosen by clicking the icon that's second to the left of the
bottom row, below the water drop. After selecting the flooring patern you want,
you can click-drag an area that you want to cover, or hold SHIFT then click,
which fills the whole room. Wallpaper works the same way; just click the icon
of a paintbrush to get started. You can remove any flooring or wallpaper by
CTRL-clicking, or even SHIFT-CTRL-clicking, which will remove everything from
that whole room.

Finally, you need customize the roof on your house. Simply click the icon that
looks like a roof, and you can choose the pitch and style of the roof. You
don't have too many choices, but you should have enough to work with.

I'll describe the other tools in Build Mode to you here...

The far left icon of the top row is the landscaping tool. With this, you can
raise, lower, or level the land; you can also grow or shrink grass, making your
lawn a lush green or a dusty brown.

Beside that is the water tool. You can add a pool with a diving board and
ladder with three of the tools. The fourth tool, big water drop, lets you
manually change tiles to little pools of water. In theory, you could make a
river, pond, or even a moat. I haven't used it much myself, but experiment to
heck and back.

Next to the water tool is the wall selection. What I didn't mention above is
that you can select fences and pillars here as well as the basic wall. Take a
look at the selection, but you probably don't want to buy any of it this early.

On the other side of the paintbrush is the staircase button. You can eventually
add a second story to your house, but that's insanely unimportant at the
moment. Keep it in mind in case you want to expand eventually.

The last icon of the top row is the fireplace tool. Again, those are so
stupid-expensive that you don't need to deal with it yet.

Now, the bottom row. The left-most icon is the plant tool. You can buy flowers,
trees, and shrubs to spruce up your lawn. This is another luxury you can deal
with once you're rich.

You know what the flooring, door, window, and roof tools do. The last one in
that row is the hand tool. You can use that to move objects, flowers, shrubs,
trees, fences, and a whole bunch of other stuff around. It's rather pointless
since your house is empty at the moment, but it's there whenever you need it.

|3b. Buy Mode|

The button to the left of the Build Mode button, the one with a chair and lamp
on it, takes you to Buy Mode. Here, you're greeted with a list of catagories of
Stuff To Buy. Watch your money, but don't neglect the basics.

You can use the eight buttons in the Buy Mode gump to select what precisely you
want to buy. You have chairs and beds, tables and other surfaces, decorations,
and electronics in the top row. In the bottom row are appliances, everything
relating to plumbing, lamps of all flavors, and miscellaneous items.

There's a secondary way you can sort the list. If you click the Buy Mode button
again, those eight catagories will switch to a room sort. Then, you can click
the appropriate button for the room you want to furnish, and go from there.
They are: living room, dining room, bedroom, and study on the top row. Kitchen,
bathroom, outside, and miscellaneous are across the bottom row.

Once you click any sort, be it a room or catagory, you get a subsort to further
your search. If you just want to browse a catagory, click the infinity symbol
in any subsort to view all the items of that catagory or room (this is the only
way to find some items).

If you click-and-hold on any item, a short description and larger picture will
come up. The price is shown along with any mood or skills it will raise. I'll
get more into the moods in the next section, and skills after that. If a
description of an item includes the line "Group Activity," it means that at
least two sims can use the item simultaneously, generally increasing the Social
meter as well as whatever else it normally increases. Some descriptions may
include "Can only be used by an adult" or "Can only be used by a child," both
of which are self-explanatory.

I won't go into details of why until the next section, but for now you're going
to need the essentials of living. Those are: a fridge, a toilet, a shower, a
bed, some form of entertainment, a chair, a phone, a burglar alarm, and a
bookcase. Most of these are obvious where to find them.

The entertainment form I recommend is a TV, although if none of your sims are
playful, you may want to just use the bookcase as your entertainment source (it
can double as such). The bookcase is listed under miscellaneous objects or the
study, depending whether you're looking at the catagory or room sort.

Make sure you put the burglar alarm outside near your front door, and place a
phone in any room but the bedroom. The phone rings in the middle of the night
often, and your sims hate waking up before they're supposed to.

You should still have the money to afford two of the cheapest counters, the
cheapest oven, and the only food processor. They will be worth their weight in
gold, or at least simoleons.

If you didn't go nuts in Build Mode, you probably have plenty of money of left
over to get a few more items that will seriously help your first few game days.
First and easiest is a nice couch. It can double as a bed if need be, so take a
look. You could also get a cheap table, put a few chairs around it, and shove
it all in the kitchen as a temporary dining room.

The last general tip I have for Build Mode is that just because you CAN buy
something doesn't mean you SHOULD buy something. Just because you have the
money to buy the §7000 DJ spintable doesn't mean that it'll help your sims' fun
ratings any more than that plasma TV, which is half the price.

Finally, if you ever want to sell an item, simply click on it while in Buy Mode
(or use the hand tool in Build Mode) to pick it up, then hit your DELETE key.
You'll get some of the money back; all of it if less than one day passed since
you bought it. To see one way you can use that to your advantage, head to the
Money Strategies subsection.

Though you can arrange anything in any order, there's one specific piece of
advice I must give. Check the Mood Meter section for details.

|3c. The Options Gump|

Before we get into the game, you may want to save (or not, if you think all
hell is going to break loose and you regret your construction decisions). I'll
take a few lines here to explain all the other options.

Across the top row are Save, Neighborhood Screen, and Quit. The first saves
your game instantly without a prompt. The second sends you back to the
neighborhood screen after prompting you to save if you hadn't recently. The
last will send you back to Windows, also after a save prompt.

The bottom three allow you to tinker with the video, audio, and game settings.
The left icon of the bottom row gives you the display settings. You can change
the level of detail of the terrain and/or characters, or toggle graphic
options. All four graphic options, if checked, make the game prettier, but take
a bit more processor power (not an issue if you're using a GHz processor with
over 128 MB RAM). All of these are explained simply by click the words of what
you want described, so I'm not going to waste your time by writing them here.

The button in center of the bottom row adjusts the volumes for sound, music,
and voices. The sound FX is all the sounds made from objects, including the TV.
The music setting affects songs from the audio objects like radios, and it
affects the volume of the fanfare that's played whenever your sims do something
special. VOX is the measure of the sims' voices when they interact with each

The last button is the game options. There are eight there, and I'll explain

AUTO-CENTERING automatically brings the view to an event. If this is your first
time, you may want to keep it on so you don't miss when something unusual

FREE WILL gives your sims the ability to act on their own, though their actions
will be heavily weighed by their personality (for example, a sim with a Neat
rating of zero will never take a shower). If you enact this, you can give your
sims commands as usual, and your commands will always take precedence over
anything they come up with on their own.

EDGE SCROLLING allows you to move the view simply by laying the cursor against
the edge of the screen. With this unchecked, you can only move the view by
right-click dragging.

SIM IN BACKGROUND allows the game to run if you task switch (ALT-TAB) out of
the game. With it unchecked, the game will pause if you task switch.

QUICK TIPS affect whether little hints will appear in the upper-right corner of
the screen. If this is enabled, occasionally a box with a question mark will
appear, and you can click that to get a bit more information. This is always
enabled in the downtown area.

AUTO SNAPSHOT lets the game take a picture for you whenever an event occurs. To
take a picture manually, click the button that looks like a camera, then choose
the size and quality of your shot. A box will appear in the game view, and
another click will capture the scene for all of time.

LIVE PIP makes the picture-in-picture (shown during some events) show what's
happening in real-time. This SERIOUSLY drains processor power, and I recommend
you leave it unchecked. The PIP will appear anyway, but it will be a still
picture, not a moving camera.

EXPORT HTML forces the game to create webpages of your families when you save.
This has serious negative impacts on save times, so I leave it unchecked.
There's a global command on the neighborhood screen that makes webpages for all
the families, and I use that whenever I decide to make webpages.


When your house is built and the objects inside it are bought, click the button
on the far left, the one that shows two people standing beside each other. This
activates Live Mode, the meat and potatoes of the game. If your sims are on
Free Will, they'll probably poke around and check out what you bought, either
applauding or booing your taste.

On the bottom of the screen are portraits of each sim in your family, along
with seven buttons to the right of them. I'll describe each one in a moment,
but right now, let me teach you how to care for your sims.

Firstly, you can only have one sim active at once. Its portrait will have a
blue border around it, and a big colored crystal will appear over its head. To
change the active sim, you can either click on the portrait of the one you want
to control, right-click the sim itself, or hit the space bar. The change
happens instantly.

Once you have a sim under your control, you can order it to interact with
anything you have. Simply click an object, and a list of actions will pop up.
Some objects only have a few actions, some have many. Explore; I'm not going to
ruin the game by going over every little item. Once you give a command, a
picture representing the command will appear in the upper-left corner of the
screen. You can cancel the action before it's completed by clicking that icon.
Only nine actions can be queued at once.

The only thing that needs a special explaination is the fridge. If a sim clicks
a fridge, it can either have a snack, make a quick meal, make a normal meal, or
serve a meal. If you select the snack, the sim will just grab a bag of chips
out of the fridge for §5. If you ask it to make a meal or quick meal, it will
go through the cooking process I talk about in 4a, with one minor note. If you
picked the quick meal, it will skip the process or chop step. This is less
filling, but takes less time. Either way, §10 will be taken from your account.
If you choose to serve a meal, the sim will make a plate of food that has six
servings, all for a measly §20. Get real intimate with that command, you'll be
using a lot.

It's time to start covering those buttons to the right of your sims' portraits.
The one that's probably already open is the mood button. If it's not, click it;
it's the one with the happy and sad masks.

Above and below that button is a graph. The graph shows the overall mood of
your sim, based on the weighted average of its eight individual moods. The
overall mood is graded positively and negatively by 5 levels, plus the neutral
mood. The color of the crystal above the active sim's head tells what mood it's
in; a green crystal is a happy mood, and the deeper the green, the happier the
mood. If the crystal is red, the sim is ticked off or depressed, and a blood
red crystal is just a more intense version.

I'll deal with the eight individual moods in a second, since they require their
own section. Let's take a look at the other buttons first.

The top button on the left, the one that looks like a word balloon, leads to
your sim's interests. This button is new to the series starting with Hot Date.
These are randomly generated, I believe. Poke around there for a moment if you
want. It shows what a sim likes and dislikes talking about, and it can have
serious impacts on friends. I talk more about interests later.

Below that is the personality button. Here, you can see what astrological sign
your sim is, along with its attributes that you set in the Create Sim screen.

The bottom-left button is the inventory screen, also new starting with Hot
Date. If your sim is carrying any items, they will appear here.

The top-right button opens the relationship meters, which shows how well your
sim is getting along with others that it has met. Until Hot Date, there was
only one meter, but now there are two. The upper meter indicates the daily
relationship, while the lower one represents the lifetime relationship. I deal
with those in more detail in the love section, too.

The button in the right-center is the job button. There you can see what, if
any, job you sim has, what its salary is, and what its skills are. Take a look
at cooking. The higher that is, the more filling their meals are. Sims
shouldn't cook unless they have at least one point in cooking, or they may end
up setting the kitchen on fire. To raise any of those skills, your sim needs to
perform a specific action. For cooking, just have one read a book. Click your
bookcase, then click "study cooking." Your sim will grab the book and take the
nearest seat, studying its heart out. The blue progress bar above its head will
fill, and when it fills completely, you'll get a message that your sim gained a
point in that skill. I'll get into skills in more detail in a later section.

The last button, the one that looks like a house, gives you a rating on your
happy home. It's probably kinda low for now, but remember that you didn't have
too much money to deal with. That will change soon, I promise.

Okay, now it's time for the mood meters. Remember I told you in that you'll
need certain objects as essential for living? This is why. I'll describe each
meter here, what it means, and how it's weighed in the overall mood. This is
the heart and soul of the game. Click back over to the mood meters to follow
along as you check out my next section.

If a sim has one particular mood extremely low, it may look at the camera
(i.e., you the player) and scream bloody murder with an accompying picture to
tell you what mood is suffering. You need to fix that quickly.

All eight moods are weighted, then averaged, and that becomes your sim's
overall mood. Its mood, among other things, severely affects what options pass
or fail when they do an action to another sim.  I cover that in the Sim Love

|4a. Hunger|

This is arguably the most important meter of all eight. This obviously is how
badly your sim needs food. No sim likes being hungry. Make sure you feed them
often, or they could die of starvation. When the bar is low, let them eat.

To make a sim eat, make the sim that's hungry the active sim, then click a
fridge. For now, choose "Have Meal" or "Serve Meal," so you can see the whole
cooking process. Sims start their cooking at a fridge by getting the
ingredients. It will then proceed to chop up the veggies if there's an empty
counter, or use a food processor if there's one present. Then it will move to
the microwave or oven, depending on which deals with hunger better, if one is
available. Once the food is done cooking, if it's a family meal, the sim will
put it on an available surface, preferring counters. If it's just a meal for
one, the sim will take it to a table if one is available, sit down, and eat.

Since you know this ahead of time, you can save your sims' time and effort by
building your kitchen and dining room in a logical order. Look at this

                    X           /

So, the logical order to arrange your kitchen is thus...

+--------+ +-----------+ +------+ +---------+
|        | |  COUNTER  | |      | |  EMPTY  |
| FRIDGE | |   WITH    | | OVEN | | COUNTER |
|        | | PROCESSOR | |      | |         |
+--------+ +-----------+ +------+ +---------+

Then you can position a table and chair strategically on the other side of the
empty counter. Efficency is the idea.

|4b. Comfort|

This is how much sims are happy with their comfort, obviously. A sim that is
standing will constantly lose comfort, although not as severely as a sim that's
working out or swimming. Generally, this is weighed pretty heavily, although
not as much as hunger.

Comfort is rather easy to raise, espeically when you consider that sims do a
lot of things sitting down. Watching TV, for example, will help comfort as well
as raising the Fun meter. You have to be wary though; sometimes, if their path
is blocked, they may watch TV or eat while standing, which is perfectly capable
to be done, but it kills the Comfort meter. Some actions, such as playing chess
or playing on a computer, cannot be done at all while standing.

So basically, while a low Comfort meter is bad, it's hardly anything to panic
about. If push comes to shove, just click a chair or couch and select "Sit." If
another sim sitting at the same time, the two will talk idly, which can bring
up the Social meter in the process as well.

|4c. Hygiene|

This is how clean the sim feels, and it's also the first one that is weighed by
the individual sim. Sims that are neat are more interested in hygiene than slob
sims are. No sim likes to be around a stinky sim, though, and if your hygiene
is too low, it could affect whether others become friends or more. Would YOU
like to kiss someone who hadn't washed their face in over a week?

Hygiene gets directly healed via bathtubs and showers. Hot tubs do the job too,
but not as well. Sims typically don't have a problem stripping down and taking
a shower if someone's in the bathroom, oddly enough. I guess the door is so
well blurred that you can't see anything once you're inside.

Anyway, if you don't have a maid, be sure to clean your shower or tub often. If
you don't, Hygiene won't go up as fast as it could; and besides, that dirt ring
looks nasty.

|4d. Bladder|

This is how much sims feel the need to visit their old friend John. Take care
of this one fast if it gets low, because if it drops to zero, the sim will wet
itself. That will cut hygiene to zero and make the sim terribly embarrassed,
possibly forcing bad relationships. No sim likes needing to do its business,
but this mood is not weighed very heavily.

If the meter drops rather low, and then you tell your sim to get to the
bathroom, he'll RUN for it. Although it's certainly not something you exactly
want to intentionally set up, it is pretty cool to see sims tearing through the

Sims will often times stop whatever they're doing if they need to go. They can
wake up in the middle of the night or stop eating before their plate is clean
if they get the urge. There are two solutions here. You can take care of the
problem when it happens, then send them back to bed or their meal. The other,
more logical solution is to send them to the bathroom BEFORE they take the
action. That prevents any and all bladder problems, so you'll be fine.

Oh, one more thing. If a sim is rather close to having an exploding bladder,
there's an action another sim can do to intentionally make it wet itself. If
two sims are close in relationships, have the one who does not have the empty
Bladder meter the active sim. Then, click the sim who does need to go the
bathroom and select the "Tickle > Extreme" action. Your active sim will do some
serious tickling, enough to make the target wet itself. Ah, gotta love social

|4e. Energy|

This tells how long the sim can go before it collapses (literally). Every
waking moment expends energy (unless the sim is drinking coffee), and you need
to send it to bed before it gets too late. Early to bed, early to rise makes a
sim healthy, wealthy, and wise... and at least still employed in the morning.

I believe that sims with a high active rating can go longer than sims with a
low active rating, but I'm not entirely sure. I do know that it takes far
shorter time for an active sim to actually get moving in the morning. If a sim
has 10 Active, then they'll literally hop out of bed, bright-eyed and
bushy-tailed (whatever THAT means). A sim with zero Active will take a full 30
minutes to get the cobwebs out of their head.

Adult sims are rather light sleepers. The slightest sound will keep them awake,
so make sure all radios, TVs, and computers are shut off if they're in the same
room. Lights don't bother them, but certain sounds that other sims make might.
For example, if there is a weight set in a bedroom, and one sim is sleeping,
it'll be woken by the sound of another sim working out. Also, they'll wake up
to the phone, and since most nighttime calls are prank callers, keep phones out
of the bedroom. Remember, as long as the object is in another room, it won't
matter in the slightest.

Kid sims are far different. They can be woken from the alarm clock, but other
sounds won't bother them. That means you can shove a kid in the living room
with your speakers blaring and phones ringing, but they won't stir a bit. This
more or less ensures that they'll have max energy when the time comes for

Once a sim goes to sleep, assuming there's no offending noise in the room, it
can only be woken a few ways. First of all, a sim will wake up if its bladder
meter gets extremely empty. You'll have about 10 game minutes to get a sim to
the bathroom before it wets itself. The second way it will wake up is to alarm
clocks. If an alarm is set, it will ring two hours before the carpool arrives.
Third, sims will (or should) wake up automatically when the sun rises at 6 AM.
It's not guaranteed, and sometimes you make have to wake a sim up manually.

As long as the Energy meter is not full, a sim will be sleeping. If it is woken
up before its Energy tops out, it will throw a fit for about 30 minutes for
sleep deprivation.

If the sun is out (anytime from 6 AM to 6 PM), the sim will stop sleeping if
its energy tops out. However, if it's nighttime, it will keep on sleeping
anyway until the sun does rise, or until you give it another command. If time
isn't a factor, then you can simply order a sim to go to sleep, and issue
another order directly afterwards. The sim will sleep, and the moment its
Energy tops off, it will wake up and take the next action you gave it.

There is only one bed that has any special commands. That's the heart-shaped
love bed, which gives three additional options besides Sleep: those are
"Vibrate," "Relax," and "Play in Bed." If a sim elects to Vibrate, he or she
will pay about §20, then get nekkid and go under the sheets. This raises
Comfort through the roof, though Energy won't go up. Relaxing is a free, but
weaker, version of Vibrate in practice.

If a sim is either Vibrating or Relaxing, another sim can elect to Play in Bed
with the one already there. The second sim will approach, get naked, and start
a healty match of sheet-wrestling. This brings Comfort and Social way up, and
Energy and Hygiene way down. Once they finish, they'll hop out of bed and react
to each other depending on how good the whole thing was. Stephanie has slapped
Pyro before, evidentally because he used his hands a little too roughly. Pyro
has laughed in Stephanie's face before, also. Most of the time, Pyro will
whisper something to Stephanie, who starts giggling. You may see other
reactions as well.

Oh, and kids can come about from Playing. It's not guaranteed, but there's
certainly a chance.

By the way, the Sleep option for beds will not appear unless the active sim has
about 85% of its Energy meter. Any higher, and the option simply won't be there
at all.

|4f. Fun|

No sim likes being bored, but sims have different things they like doing. Sims
with low playful ratings prefer reading books, and sims with high playful
ratings like watching TV. The playful and active ratings combine for this one,
too; if a sim has high active and playful ratings, it prefers basketball or
vitrual gaming. If it has low active but high playful ratings, watching the
latest episode of Malcom in the Middle or playing The Sims on its computer is
what it likes more.

There are many actions that can boost Fun. Sims can even boost each other's Fun
by tickling or telling jokes. Playing in Bed or Playing in hot tubs will boost
fun also (everyone likes playing like that, right?).

If you decide to tell your sim to watch to TV or play on the computer to get
the Fun meter up, you'll need to take precautions. See, for some reason, if you
give them more than one command, they'll drop the TV or computer to do whatever
you ordered after it. So, make sure that playing on the computer or watching TV
is the LAST command on the action list.

Sims prefer to watch TV while sitting down. Should a chair or couch be
provided, they'll sit it in automatically. They'll try to pick the most
comfortable one, but they'll even settle on standing if there's nothing
available (although that kills Comfort). Once a sim tops off its Fun meter, it
will stop whatever it's doing.

However, if a sim is having Fun but doing something else in the process, it may
continue the action anyway. For example, if it's playing chess, it won't stop
even after the Fun meter tops off because it is still studying Logic at the
same time.

|4g. Social|

The sim's need to talk. This is HEAVILY weighed for all sims; a sim that has
zero Social but 100 everything else will probably have a mood of +1 or +2 max.
The balance of the weight comes in with the speed of the bar's decline. A sim
with a high outgoing rating will feel the need to be social FAR more than a sim
with no outgoing ratings, but will fill the meter a bit quicker than a shy sim.

The Social meter is not entirely in scale to the relationship meters. So, just
because you raise the relationship by 50 points doesn't mean that the Social
meter increases by 50%. Talking, for example, only mildly helps the Social
meter, even if two sims talk for hours. However, a few kisses, especially the
passionate kind, will kick the Social meter into overdrive.

Because the Social meter is independent of the relationship meters, it won't
matter who is doing what as far as the Social meter goes. So, if Pyro is
talking to Stephanie, the Social meter will go up the same as if he's talking
to Pete, no matter what the relationship numbers say.

The Social meter can also be brought down by choosing negative interactions,
such as Fight and Insult. Still, some sims get a kick out of being insulted for
some reason; it has to do with their level of Nice that you assigned in the
Create Sim screen. The nicer a person is, the more of a chance they'll do
positive actions, and the less of a chance they'll be Socially better by doing
negative ones. Still, every neighborhood has a bitch that you just want to beat
the crap out of, and variety in sims is the key to doing very well in the game.

|4h. Room|

This is the sim's opinion of the room it's currently in, or how much it likes
the yard if it's outside. All sims like large rooms and lit rooms, but neat
sims dislike dirty dishes and pee puddles. Slobby sims are less picky, but even
they get tired of the flies once in awhile. Decorations boost this meter
considerably, but try to buy better windows or more lamps before you blow
thousands on a statue or painting.

Lights are optional, and they don't seem to improve room ratings too much. I
had a room that was 5x30, and any sim in it had a full Room meter, even though
it was unlighted.

You see, sims like light, but they like space more. They would rather be in a
dark room the size of a small country than a small bathroom with a billion
lights. Sims are weird like that. They also prefer diagonal walls over normal
ones, so making an octognal room will significantly help.

Don't do this...

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Do this...

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Not only does this save money, but room scores will get better. You can also
get super-fancy, though it's more expensive...

/                              |
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|                     /-------
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|                              |

Eventually, you'll want lights, but if for no other reason than to make the
room a bit more realistic. (In real life, I wouldn't want to live in a dark
house, and I'm pretty sure you wouldn't either.)

When you buy lights, think about the room you're buying the lamp for. That
should help lead to your decision about just what lamp to buy at all.

If you're buying a lamp for the bathroom, and it's a tiny bathroom, you don't
need any huge expensive lamp. Since floor lamps would get too much in the way,
you would want to go with a wall lamp or hanging lamp. Hanging lamps even have
life-long light bulbs, so you wouldn't endanger your sim's life when it's time
to change bulbs and there's water on the floor.

The cheapest hanging lamp, the red one that looks like it belongs in a bar,
would serve better than anything else. Just one could easily light a 3x3
bathroom, and two could cover a 3x4 or 4x4 bathroom.

Also, make sure you know how much light is being generated. Most lamps send
light one or two tile(s) in every direction. If you space your lamps
accordingly, you can cover a whole room while not spending too much on extra

You could also take the completely opposite route I just described and coat the
walls with wall lights. I noticed that if there are enough lamps in one room,
every tile will be lit no matter how far away the lamps are. You could, say,
put one wall lamp on every wall section, and whatever room you do that to will
be bright all night. Of course, doing so prevents windows, but lights light up
during the day as well as the night.

Once you have a bunch of money, you should start buying decorative things for
the rooms. Certain things, like the more expensive chess set, have practical
uses as well as boosting Room scores. Upgrading furniture and fireplaces will
help too. Statues and paintings actually appreciate in value, so you can buy
one and sell it a few days later for a profit. Coat the walls liberally with
paintings either way: your sims' Room meters will go through the roof.

Outside, coat the yard with plants. Pink flamingos, while pretty damn ugly,
still boost the yard score significantly. The only thing you need to avoid is
the Topiaries. For some reason, sims run into them, and can't figure out how to
go AROUND them, so they just give up whatever their current task is. Must be a
fault in the object code, but whatever the cause is, don't build any. There are
plenty of other flowers you can plop down that won't have the same problem.


Let's face it: just like real life, one person alone cannot do everything.
Maybe a particular sim stayed up too late and doesn't have time to cook the
next morning.

This is where a second sim in the family is very helpful. A second sim can pick
up the slack for another. Some methods could be obvious; one sim could excell
in the cooking skill and be the only one who prepares meals, for example.

Sims work best as a team. If any one sim is doing nothing, probably the rest of
its family is suffering or could at least better off. More on this in my
strategy section.

Your sim can interact with other sims whenever you wish it to. With a sim
active, simply click any other sim and you'll get a list of actions you can
perform. I talk more about that in the Sim Love section.

||6. MONEY||

It's all about the Benja-sims. Now that your family is settled in its house,
you need to turn to earning money, since bills arrive at your house every 3
days. There's a million ways to make money.

|6a. Jobs|

The easiest way to earn money is to have your adult sims get jobs, because the
jobs pay daily. Polish up those résumés, it's time to start working!

At 9 AM every morning, the paper is delivered to your front lawn, near your
mailbox. You can check that to see what jobs are being offered, along with
their salary. For the first day, take whatever job is offered; "Beggars can't
be choosers," as the saying goes.

You can also get a job by using a computer, but you may not be able to afford
it unless you "cheat the system" a bit. Check the short-strategy subsection.

Once you take a job, your mission is to get promoted to the next level. There
are 20 career paths, each with 10 levels. You begin every path on the lowest
rung, with one situational exception, which I'll explain in a moment.
Promotions will happen automatically, and you will be informed of them once the
sim who got promoted comes home. You'll get the next level's pay, along with a
one-time bonus that is twice as much.

For example, if a sim in the X-treme Career is at level 2 and gets promoted,
he'll bring home the new salary of level 3 (§325), plus twice as much for a
bonus (§650), for a total of §975. Generally, you would want to use the extra
cash to buy anything you may need to hone new required skills. Demotions can
happen too, if the sim keeps showing to work in a bad mood.

Carpools set to take you to work will arrive at a certain time. If two sims go
to work at the same time, they use the same carpool. Your sim has one hour to
start walking toward the car before it will drive away. Sims can miss work
without repercussion so long as they don't miss two days in a row. Two skip
days will result in being fired, but skipping one day, going the next day, and
skipping the third day is fine.

No matter what job you have, there's a chance a random event will happen (I
call them Chance Cards; what can I say? I love Monopoly.). Most are in the form
of skill bonuses, but many give you extra money. Chance Cards can be bad,
however; you may lose money or skill. The chance of a Chance Card appearing is
slim, but I don't know the exact percentage.

The most lucrative one I've found is in the Hacker career track. If you're
lucky, you'll end up getting a boost of a whopping §30000. Yes, thirty THOUSAND
simoleans. That's more than enough to remodel your house, including buying
carpet, wallpaper, windows (in any style), doors (in any style), and lamps (in
any style) for every room. And after that, you'll still have a great deal left
over. Personally, that's one of the main reasons I tend to favor the Hacker
career with Pyro.

If you stay at the top level of any job for awhile, you'll get a chance card
that will boot you to another career at about the 5th level. There's no real
positive of this, it's just a way for your games to be more random.

That's the only time you won't start at the bottom however. If you quit or get
fired, then take another job, you WILL start at the lowest level.

|6b. Arts and Crafts|

There are many things you can make to earn a living. If you decide to go into
business for yourself, you'll first need the creation tools.

One way is to be the Bill Gates of gnomes. Once you're in a lot, grab a wood
working table through Buy Mode. You may want to zone off a large room (about
8x8) as a garage or whatever for this. Put only the table in it; if you insist
on lights, use hanging lamps or wall lamps to keep them out of the way.

Once your sim wakes up in the morning, take care of your moods, then
immediately get to work on making lawn gnomes! Keep working through the day and
night, only stop when your sim stops on his own.

Remember, you'll be gaining your Mechanical skill along the way, so every
moment that you're working on the gnomes, you're getting better at it.
Eventually, when the Bill Gates type get 10 Mechanical, he can make over 20 to
25 gnomes in one day if he starts with a +4 mood. Each sells for §100, so
you'll have a DAILY income of at least §2000! Considering that you don't need
friends or work hours for this, it's a great, lazy way to earn money.

The only real problem with this is the Social meter. If your sim lives alone,
he can head downtown to meet someone. If he lives with someone, his friend /
brother / lover / whatever can compliment the Social meter. Even if only your
Bill Gates works, you'll earn PLENTY of money to make a living.

Instead of gnomes, you could try to dabble in paint. Now, I don't think you can
earn a living JUST by painting, but Joseph Bull ( says the


This is incorrect - it is possible. At 10 creativity points, paintings sell for
6. A Sim can easily paint 2 pictures in a day, and just about manage 3. That
means a daily income of 2 - 8 - more than enough to survive. For example,
my sim, with 10 creativity, paints two pictures a day. This means a 3-day
income of 6. She gets bills of 8, spends  on food, and  on a
gardener. That leaves 8 to spend/save.


If table working is more your thing, but you don't want to deal with gnomes,
you can make homemade preserves with the preserves table. They sell for even
less than paintings, but you may be able to make enough preserves per day to
get a good living going.

Finally, you can try being an art dealer. Paintings and statues that you buy
through Buy Mode actually APPRECIATE value before depreciating. So, if you buy
a statue, you can leave it in your house for a few days, then sell it again to
make a profit. Of course, you'll need large capital to start in the first
place, so you may not want to try it at the beginning.

|6c. Other Money Tips|

|Damn It Feels Good to be a Gangsta|

You could take a very underhanded and mean way to get large sums of money in
relatively short times. You'll be damaging the life of a poor, innocent sim,
but hey, you're mean like that.

Let's take two sims here for the example. We'll make Tony the gangster, and
Trixie the sim he steps on.

Okay, Tony moves into whatever lot he wants to, builds his house into whatever
he wants to, and generally starts his life like normal. Meanwhile, Trixie moves
into a lot, but she only buys a table and a phone to put on it.

Tony then goes through life, and soon enough, Trixie will come up to his house.
He flirts with her, making her fall in love with him. Eventually, they'll be
married, and all §20,000 of Trixie's money will transfer to Tony's account.
Then, Trixie will be in a, um, "horrible accident" and die.

Trixie may be dead, but Tony still has all her money. He's 20 grand richer
simply by marrying and killing an innocent sim. Weep not for Trixie; she'll get
even by having her ghost scare him. Then again, he could just sell the urn for
a quick fiver, and that will be the end of that. The cops will never touch him!
Ha ha ha ha!

|Renting Items|

I don't know what shop sims buy from, but it has the greatest return policy
I've ever heard of. Whatever you buy, if you return it the same day, you get
all your money back no matter how much you used.

Now, notice I said that you need to return the SAME DAY, not "within 24 hours."
If you buy the item at 11:59 PM, then you have one minute before it loses its
full value. If you plan on "renting" an item like this, be sure to do so no
later than the early evening.

One basic way to take advantage of this is to buy a computer, desk, and chair
so your sims have more options for employment. Then, when they have a job, you
can return all of it to get your cash back.

|Pre-Built Houses|

Houses are expensive to build from scratch, and with only §20,000 to work with
(well, less since you have to buy the lot), you may end up starting in a house
small enough and ugly enough to be appropiate for under a bum's shoe.

However, there is a way to save a bunch of money on homes from the start. For
some reason, if you buy a lot with a house already on it, then you get a HUGE
break on the price. So, the idea is to build a house before entering the lot.

First, you need to make a throwaway family (for this example, I'll call it the
Tester family). It doesn't matter who is in it or anything. Move the Testers
into the lot you want your real family to be in. Then, as the Testers, build
the house the way you want it. Don't bother with objects, just get the walls,
windows, doors, wallpaper, carpet, and roof the way you want it. Once that's
all done, save the game and go back to the neighbood screen.

Now, evict the Testers out of the lot, but DON'T demolish the house. Any
objects you bought will be sold, which is why I told you not buy any (landscape
items will still be there). Then, move in your main family, and they'll get a
huge break in price for the house!

|The Homeless Bum Strategy|

Vacation Island is a special place... there's warm sun, cool mountains, hot
chicks in bikinis, and the fact that you can't die!

That's right, you cannot die when on the island, and can therefore be a
homeless bum! Simply make a sim and immediately move him over to the Island. In
theory, you can just stay there for your entire life, stinking up pools and
digging up the grass to find treasure! And, even if you run out of money, you
don't NEED to eat, and the ground makes a perfect bed!

||7. SKILLS||

The six skills you need are Cooking, Mechanical, Charisma, Body, Logic, and
Creativity. All but one of them can help you directly; the other simply serves
for the job. All skills start at zero and can be raised to 10. They won't decay
unless you're unlucky enough to get a chance card during the course of a job.

When you start working on any skill, a little blue progress bar will appear
over that sim's head. When it tops off, you'll get a message informing you that
the sim gained in that skill.

COOKING and MECHANICAL can be learned by studying them from a bookcase or
buying and using the appropiate work table. The Cooking table is a homemade
preserves cooking set, which you can buy under miscellaneous items. The
Mechanical table, also under miscellaneous, is a wood working table. Both
enable you to work on your skills while making money, although you'll have to
work a little bit to see any profits.

To use either table, simply interact with it, and choose the sole option that
appears. If you're wood working, your sim will continue until it gets in a bad
mood or you give it a different order. The same applies to the preserves table,
but your sim will stop if it makes a set of six jars.

By far, the better item is the wood working table. While it chops at your
comfort level (since you're standing while you're working), you can make mass
profits from being fully knowledgable in Mechanical. If your Mechanical rating
is 10, then each gnome you craft with the table nets you §100 (you can sell the
gnomes in Buy Mode). A family could EASILY make a living on just that table
alone, but I'll deal with that specific strategy in the strategy section.

The homemade preserves table will advance your cooking, but you can only sell
the preserves for §60 a set when your Cooking is at 10 (these are sold as an
interaction, not in Buy Mode). However, you can use the preserves as gifts,
also with an interaction to the table itself, if you so desire. I cover gifts
in the next section.

Cooking contributes to how filling the sim's meal is. The higher the Cooking
skill, the better a meal (whether it be a family meal or a single meal) will
improve the Hunger mood bar. Mechanical affects how fast a sim can repair a
broken appliance or clogged toilet. With a low rating, it may be worth the §50
or so it takes to call a repairman.

CHARISMA is the next skill, and it's gained in only two ways. You can either
Practice Speech when you interact with any mirror, or you can buy the item
called Bezique's Folly Card Game, found in the miscellaneous items and PRACTICE
it. While the card game is a group activity, you don't gain Charisma from
playing with others. It doesn't make sense to me, but hey, I didn't program the
game. Anyway, there's no purpose for Charisma other than job advances.

BODY is gained from either swimming or working on the exercise equipment, found
in the miscellaneous items. By the way, while your sim swims, there won't be a
blue progress bar, but trust me, Body IS going up.  Doyle Brigman
( reminded me that there is a third way: you can ride the
mechanical bull. Erik Swinson ( and Samuel Loucks
( e-mailed me and told me that Body actually has a purpose.
It enables you to more easily win fights against others. So if you want someone
with low Body to move, just get someone with high Body to whoop on them enough

LOGIC is gained by either playing chess, looking in the telescope, or working
with the chemistry set. I prefer the chess set, since it boosts your fun as
well as logic; plus, since you're sitting, your comfort will be going up as
well. If you can find another sim to play with you, you'll have the social
meter getting a boost too. Logic determines the chance that making a potion in
the chemistry set will be a positive potion. I have always made good potions
when my logic was at 10.

CREATIVITY can be raised by playing a musical instrument or painting.
Creativity affects the quality of what you're painting too, but even a painting
that was painted by someone with 10 Creativity points won't sell for much.
Other than that, Creativity won't affect anything else in-game.

Try to raise your sims' skills as much as possible without compromising your
moods. Of course, you can kill several birds with one grenade if you can. As I
said up there by Logic, playing chess is a great way to raise Fun, Comfort,
Social, and Logic all at once. Besides, if two people play chess, they both
learn Logic simultaneously. Not a bad deal!

Just be careful with raising Body. It absolutely drains energy and comfort
levels, so don't try it if your sim is already uncomfortable or tired.

|7a. Skill Gain Rates|

To gain a skill, you have to use an item for awhile, as I said. But the
question is, how long must you study? The first few points don't take long at
all, but soon the process seems excrusiatingly slow.

I ran a few tests and discovered that it takes
whatever-point-you're-studying-for hours. For example, to gain the first point,
you need to study for an hour. To gain the second point, you need to study for
two hours. The third point takes three hours, and so on. This applies to all
six skills.

If you know ahead of time how long it will take, you can plan your day around
it (or plan it around your day). Or, you could devote a set time to studying.

Anyway, this means that one skill will take a total of 55 hours to max out. All
skills will be maxxed at 330 hours. Since your working sims can only study a
maximum of about 8 hours a day (the other 16 devoted to sleeping or working),
it will take at LEAST 42 days to max everything. And that's of course assuming
you spend no time eating, socializing, or taking showers, which is impossible
of course.

That's why I recommend the following: the first thing you should do is study
whatever skill is necessary to get promoted. Once you have all the skill
requirements, study whatever skill is the MOST developed. The reason is because
whatever skill is needed in the first few levels of the career will probably
end up having to be maxxed at the end of the track. For example, the first Body
requirement of the Military career track is 2, but the final requirement is 9.
Instead of working on Body only when it's required, you should work on it any
time you have free. That will make the final promotion a bit easier on your

||8. SIM LOVE||

"When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie, that's amoré!"

...Well, something like that anyway.

First of all, let me start by saying that your sims start off their lives by
not having any sort of sexual preference... either that, or everyone is a
bisexual. In other words, any sim can fall in love with any other sim. I
suppose if you really want to, you could have incest stories going, but that's
a little weird.

The point is that you cannot "set" whether sims are homosexual, heterosexual,
or bisexual. However, you can point your sim in one direction or another. If
you want a heterosexual sim, just don't do any of the "love" actions (explained
below) to the same gender of sim. There are plenty of actions that aren't
considered love, although there are a few of each that I don't agree with. More
on that in a second though.

Remember the button that lets you view relationships? It's in Live Mode, and
the top-right button of the group of seven (the one that has the two people on
it). That shows all the sims whom the active sim knows. You may have to scroll
the list if you know a lot of others.

I'm going to use my own sims as examples here so I don't have to say "your sim"
and "the other sim" every few seconds...

The background color of the portrait indicates the general feeling of your
active sim to the other one. For example, if Stephanie's picture is gray when
Pyro is the active character, it means that Pyro barely knows Stephanie at all.
If it's a faded green, it means Pyro is starting to know Stephanie, just not
all that well. When it turns bright green, Pyro knows Stephanie inside and out
(though that may not indicate love). It works negatively, too. A dull red means
Pyro sort of resents Stephanie, but he can suck it up for awhile. A bright red
indicates that Pyro openly wants to whoop Stephanie's candy ass whenever she

Directly below the portrait is a number, and below that is a thin bar. These
show the same thing, in different ways; they show the daily (i.e., short-term)
feelings specifically. The number can range anywhere from -100 to 100. At 0,
Pyro just met Stephaine. At 100, they're very good friends. At -100, they're

Below that is another, thicker bar, and another number. These show the lifetime
(i.e., long-term) feelings. At 100, Pyro and Stephanie have been lifelong
friends since childhood. At -100, they've been enemies before they were even

Both the daily and lifetime meters combine to determine the overall feelings. I
assume they're weighted, but I'm not sure. The purpose of having both meters is
to allow Pyro and Stephanie to be in love but be fighting, in theory. It
doesn't work that easily, though.

If two sims do not interact with each other, the bars will slowly go toward 0.
I've experimented and found out that the lifetime bar affects the general speed
of decay. For example, if Pyro has 100 daily and 100 lifetime to Stephanie, 
there may be no decay at all before the day is done. If Pyro has 100 daily and
only 20 lifetime to Stephaine, the 100 may trickle down to 90 or so that day.

I got a contribution from Clay ( detailing this a bit more...


The top bar (current relationship) is similar to the old style bar. So, you can
directly affect it (higher or lower) through interactions, but it also degrades
by several points by itself. It also degrades a bit faster now, about every 2-3
hours instead of overnight.

The lower bar (long-term relationship) is the life time relationship and isn't
directly affected through social interactions. What it does is, every few hours
or so it moves a few points in the direction of the top bar. So if the lower
bar is at 20 and the upper bar is at 70, after a few hours the lower bar will
jump a few points up to 22 or so. All this bar ever does is try to match the
top bar. So, if you can keep the top bar high, the lower bar will eventually
match it.


And Sheepgood, who asked me to keep his e-mail address private, gave exact


Every 90 Sim-minutes the lifetime bar moves towards the daily bar by 3 points.


Beware that just because Pyro likes Stephanie doesn't mean she likes him back.
In fact, most if not all of sims' relationships will be very slightly different
if you compare both sets of numbers. Generally, the numbers won't be TOO far
off; Pyro could be 95 daily/90 lifetime, while Stephanie is 92 daily/87
lifetime. Differences that small are more or less negligable.

Below the bars and numbers, two symbols may or may not be there. A blue smiley
face indicates that Pyro considers Stephanie a friend. A pink heart would
indicate that he's starting to feel some butterflies whenever she's around.
That heart could change into a red heart, which means he's head over heels in
love. Until the Hot Date expansion, there was only one level of love.

The numbers, overall mood, and love or friendship status affect what actions
are available when two sims interact, and whether those actions will fail.

Because I don't want to ruin the game for you, I'm going to just touch on the
actions sims can do with each other. I divide all the positive actions into two
classes: those that initate love, and those that don't. This is VERY important
to remember.

You see, if two sims love each other, they get jealous or angry whenever other
sims hit on their lovers. If Pyro loves Stephanie, and Pete tries to kiss her,
Pyro will be ticked. No matter how Stephanie reacts, be it positively or
negatively, Pyro will take a cut in his Social meter, and he'll normally stop
whatever he's doing to slap Pete. He'll also lose several points of friendship
against Pete too.

Now, the only actions that can do this are those that initate love. Pyro won't
get mad if Pete talks to Stephanie or gives her a friendly hug, but my namesake
will get very angry if Pete tries to sweep Stephanie off her feet.

Pyro can only detect this if he's in the same room, however. If Pete coaxes
Stephanie into his bedroom and tries to move in on her, Pyro won't know and
will ignorantly continue whatever he's doing. Wow, this is turning into the
latest episode of Days of Our Lives.

Anyway, the moral is that you'll want to stay innocent with other sims if
someone who loves them is in the same room. If you're in different rooms, well,
do what you wish.

In any event, all actions will boost the Social meter and add positive points
to the relationship bars if the move is not rejected. Just because the option
to kiss a sim appears doesn't mean your target will accept your advances. The
only option that is never outright rejected is Talk, although there's a slim
chance one sim will get a bit agitated at the conversation.

I'm going to sound like a complete moron with my next statement, but I can't
think of a better way to put it: all actions that can induce love have a chance
of inducing love. That is, all kisses and a few hugs may make one sim fall in
love with other, or they may fall for each other at the same time. Typically,
the sims will go to a pink heart before a red heart, but I've seen a few
instances when they skip the pink heart step.

The only exception, the one that makes me scratch my head in wonder, is the
Compliment > Admire action. This causes other sims to get jealous, but it never
induces love. I can understand why Compliment > Worship would get some tempers
rising, but admiration? Ah well, just be aware of it.

If love is not your cup of tea and you just want to be friends with another
sim, your actions become slightly limited, but not significantly. No group
activity can induce love, so you can have two sims improve their friendship by
playing chess or watching TV for example.

Once the daily relationship meter is high enough, that sim becomes a friend and
the blue smiley face will appear. This generally happens around 50, but that
number could be significantly higher. If two sims have conflicting zodiac
signs, or one is particularly shy, or one is particularly mean, the number
could reach as high 90. It's one way the game more or less forces you to have
variety among your families.

When a sim becomes a friend, it's counted as a FAMILY friend. The number of
friends a family has is indicated in the bottom-left corner by the green smiley

The reason I stress FAMILY friend is because that's the number that is
considered when a sim gets promoted. In fact, my main strategy takes full
advantage of that. You can check that out in the strategy section.

As far as I know, there is no real border to indicate whether a sim will fall
in love, but I do know that a sim will not fall in love with someone that's not
a friend first. Summary: "All lovers will be friends, but not all friends will
be lovers."

So by now you're probably asking how you get your sims to fall in love. It
sounds simple on paper, and may be simple in the game, but it could end up
getting rather complex.

Let's go back in time before Pyro and Stephanie were married, when they were
both still in SimCollege. The first thing that had to happen was a meeting.
After that, they talked casually about their interests, occasionally
entertaining each other with jokes or puppets. As their relationship grew, they
became friends, and started getting slightly more forward with one another. One
day, their hug was an intimate one, lasting longer than normal. That's when
both started feeling a little flustered.

Pyro and Stephanie did a lot of flirting, whispering sweet little nothings in
each other's ears and sharing back rubs. Pyro eventually found the courage to
give Stephanie a little peck on her cheek. That kiss carried bucketloads of
fireworks. Stephanie returned the kiss with a passionate one on Pyro's lips,
and he got all red and giggly. Pyro's a dork, what can I say? They were married
soon after that, and Pyro started giving Stephanie back rubs from the front.

The point is, all you have to do is slowly get more forward with your target,
and it will happen automatically. There's just a few general rules:

1. WATCH YOUR MOOD -- If you're in a bad mood, you may hug a little too hard or
miss your aim with that kiss. It's best to keep it simple if you're ticked off.

2. WATCH YOUR TARGET'S MOOD -- Your target may be a little angry and doesn't
feel like being hugged or flirted with. Again, keep it simple.

3. DON'T BE STINKY -- No one wants to be kissed by a pair of lips that have the
remains of yesterday's pizza. If you're not clean, you may want to avoid trying
anything until a shower.

4. DON'T BE TIRED -- If you lean in for a kiss and end up falling asleep on
your target's shoulder, it kinda ruins the night for both of you.

5. DON'T BE TOO FORWARD -- If you met your target ten seconds ago, he/she is
not going to want a deep passionate kiss. Save those advanced moves until
you're both ready, Romeo. Don't make me get the hose!

Since friends care less about each other's moods and hygiene, you can pretty
much pull the meter up to 50 without any sort of issue of cleanliness and
energy. Still though, you want to be in the best mood you can be at all times

Some say that you can get from a relationship rating of 0 to 100 in one day,
while others say you can't. I can tell you from the bottom of my soul that not
only is it possible, it's very likely if you play your cards right. In my
strategy section, I deal with that very issue. Even if you're a veteran of The
Sims, do not try old strategies. Maxis has slightly changed the way sims get
their relationship meters up; it's nothing weird, but it's slightly harder.
More details in the strategy section. (By the way, I'm talking about getting
the DAILY meter up to 100. There's no way you can get the lifetime meter up to
triple digits in one day.)

At least, I don't think there's a way. However, SweetE8907
( insists that it's possible...


You stated in it that it is impossible to raise your lifetime meter 100 in a
single day but it is not because I did it.  I just had the two get to know each
other, hugg and kiss alot, and it happened in a few hours.


Once your sim has a strong daily and lifetime relationship with one person, you
can ask the target to move in with you if they aren't already. If this is
accepted, they do so immediately, and if they're the last one of their family,
their money and friends are added to yours! It can be a quick boost to your
bank account as well as a ticket to eternal happiness.

If a sim is up to 100, in love, and of the opposite gender, the option of
marriage can come up on the list. If accepted, a very short ceremony commences,
with a chunk of your cash being subtracted to cover the expenses. After that,
they move in as they would with the move-in command I just described. For tips
on how to accomplish either, head to my strategy section.

The last thing I want to touch on is the art of giving gifts. Before the Hot
Date expansion, "Give Gift" was a basic action that subtracted §20 from your
account in order to give a green package to your target. The target would
generally gain 5 points, and this action could never be rejected. In a very
real sense, you could buy your target's love.

Now, it's not so simple. In order to give a gift, you have to possess it first.
Not everything can be gifts, and most of them must be bought when you're
downtown. Only the homemade preserves can be added to your inventory, which can
be accessed by clicking the button with a little gift-wrapped package.

Once you have a gift, there's no cost to give it, but it will disappear
afterwards. Therefore, Pyro can't give Stephanie a necklace and have her give
it back, for example. I think the boost is now around 3 points for gift giving,
making it terribly unprofitable.

Although, Karmo04 ( told me a different story about just
how much the relationship meter raises for a gift...


u mention that giving a gift  boosts relationsships by 3 points. this isn't
true. it depends on what gift u give. a strategy that i use it if i have alot
of money i buy lots of diamond rings (1000 simolians a piece). even if the sims
don't like diamond rings, they will except them and benifit from them. each
diamond ring can produce around a 20 point increase, or more!


And, Darkflash5 ( has not only confirmed what Karmo04 said,
but he gave me some exact numbers, too...


Homemade preserves = 1 relationship point for every cooking skill point the
giver had when making the preserves.

Lawn Gnome = 1 relationship point for every mechanical skill point when the
giver had when making the Gnome. (don't understand why ANYONE would want a lawn

The Sims = 5 relationship points (10 for kids)

Teddy Bear = 10 relationship points (15 for kids)

Sucker (lollipop, but I hate saying it) = 5 relationship points (15 for kids)

Chocolates = 10 relationship points (11 for kids: get the sucker!)

Yellow Rose = 15 relationship points (cannot induce love, but CAN induce

Red Roses = 15 relationship points (Can induce love, but not friendship)

Necklace = 20 relationship points (Can induce love and friendship)

Diamond Ring = 20 relationship points (Can induce love, friendship, and is
gauranteed to be accepted or your money back....I wish.)


By the way, Rob Sevening ( says that gifts can be


You said in your FAQ that giving a gift could never be rejected. That is SO not
true. I once gave a gift to a particularly stone-cold sim (the dark-haired
'Mom' in the default family who lived in the cemetary house) and she took the
gift, threw it to the ground, and stomped on it.


|8a. Having and Greeting Visitors|

Sims in the same neighborhood will show up on your family's doorstep on the day
you move in, but they only do that until you've met them. After that, you have
to invite them over.

To do so, click a phone, then the last name of the sim you want to invite, then
the first name of the sim. A little pop-up box will appear; click Invite. This
can be declined, but they're far more willing to come over if the relationship
meter is high. Calling while your target is at work won't do anything, and
calling in the middle of the night will tick him or her off.

The sim may ask if another sim can come over too. This is up to you, and if you
accept, you may have up to four others come over. All visitors expect you to
feed them, so you may not want to do this until you've got a meal ready. If you
decline, you're not penalized in any way.

If the sim is an exceptionally good friend, he or she may bring a box of
chocolates or a vase of flowers. The flowers are worthless, and the chocolates
aren't that great at helping the Hunger meter, but the gesture is nice I

By the way, speaking of things that are worthless... you may have noticed a
"Talk" option in the pop-up box after you call a sim. Never choose it; it
wastes time and doesn't boost the relationship meter by more than a few points.

However, Roel Kroesen ( tells me that the Talk option isn't so
bad after all...


If have noticed that talking on the phone to a friend is a good way to boost
the social meter. From 100% red to about 60-65% green takes just 3 phonecalls.
Ofcourse if the friend that you call hangs up, the effect is less.


I tested that, and indeed the Social meter gets a nice kick when two sims just
talk. The Relationship meter doesn't move more than 5 points, but the Social
boost can save a sim that's depressed. But anyway, let's get back on topic.

If the sim does not bring a gift, it's up to you to decide how you will greet
them. Shaking hands is generally the considerable thing to do, but you could be
more forward if you think you can get away with it. Just be careful; being too
forward can lead to any number of things going wrong.

When you want a sim to vacate your house, you should do so politely. Click the
target, choose "Say Goodbye...," then something appropiate to the situation.
Only enemies will want to leave with a wave. Most prefer handshaking, although
you can try a kiss if you're daring. The "Hug" option means a friendly hug, so
no one is going to get jealous as a result of it.

Remember, you can never control a visitor. Just make sure you have a healthy
balance of stuff so the sim won't go away angry, and you'll be okay.

|8b. Interests|

Ladies and gentlemen, my name is PyroFalkon, and I am a gamer.

[insert applause here]

All my real-life friends are hardcore gamers, too. Two of them and I combine to
be the greatest force on the face of the earth when it comes to Age of Empires
II: The Conquerors for the PC. (No, that wasn't a challenge.) I guarentee you
that it was pretty much our similar interests in all things gaming that brought
us together and sealed our friendship.

Starting with Hot Date, The Sims works the same way. In the previous versions
of The Sims, you could see what your sims discussed via the little picture
balloons that appeared over their heads. It wasn't a very DETAILED way of
seeing it, but at least you had some semblence of an idea of what they were
talking about.

Enter Hot Date's expansion of relationships. Now, sims have a variety of
interests that they can... well, be interested in. There are 15, and you can
view them in the Interests window of Live Mode (the top-left button of the
group, the one with the word balloon).

When two sims talk, they will only talk about things that interest them. If a
sim has 0 in Sports, for example, he'll never bring up that the Chicago Cubs
have gone nearly a century without winning the bloody World Series. If his
Technology interest is up to 10, on the other hand, he'll be constantly
reciting the specs of his new favorite computer.

The sim that is talking will gain around 3 relationship points if his or her
words are well received, or lose 3 points if not. Pyro typically has high
technology and sports interests, and Stephanie has high exercise and sports
interests. If Pyro talks about computers with her, he'll lose 3 points. Of
course, if he talks about the Pittsburgh Steelers, he'll start gaining.

Compatable interests don't just help relationship meters, by the way. Having
similar interests, especially if the topic is a 10 for both sims, will give a
MASSIVE boost to the Social meters as well, which can easily put them in
fantastic moods (remember, the Social meter is the most-heavily weighted of all

When two sims are conversing, you can click the active sim and change the
topic, but again only to something that he's interested in. Also, the sims will
change topics on their own, so you may need to carefully monitor conversations
to make sure things aren't bad. I once had a dinner where Pyro kept talking for
a half-hour about DVD burners, and he lost 30 points of care for Stephanie, but
she talked about the Penguins, and she gained 30 to him. It was the greatest
difference I had ever seen between those two.

Typically, you'll want families to have similiar, if not the same, interests.
That way, dinner conversations don't end up turning into brawls.

If you are downtown, you can ask a date "What are you into?" The target will
respond by telling you the three highest interests on his list, and your sim
will think to himself whether he likes them or not. If your sim thinks of a
picture, and there's a big red X through it, that topic won't be well received.

Of course, you can change their level on interest in a topic, but first, let me
describe what those topics are...

TRAVEL - "I'm telling you, the Great Wall of China looks better than those ugly
Pyramids of Egypt!" When sims talk about travel, you see a sailboat, plane, or
car in their word bubble.

MONEY - "Yeah, these young people nowadays don't know the value of a simolean.
And they don't respect their elders, neither!" You'll see dollar bills, the
simolean symbol, or the face of a burglar when money comes up in a

POLITICS - "I accidentally voted for the wrong guy! Really!" You'll see the
Memorial Building, a judge behind a desk flanked with two furled flags, or a
set of scales here.

THE 60s - "Dude! Flower power all the way! Burn those bras, baby!" Here, you'll
see a peace sign, the symbol of an atom, or a flower.

WEATHER - "That dork on channel 7 is always wrong. He said it'll be sunny
today, so you better bring your umbrella." You'll see a sun, a sun behind a
cloud, or a cloud pouring rain.

SPORTS - "The Steelers will go all the way this year. And the Texans freakin'
suck." You'll get a picture of a soccer ball, a tennis racket, or a skier going
down a hill.

MUSIC - "Just how many of the Backstreet Boys and N*Sync are actually
straight?" You'll see a guitar, a musical staff with notes, or a drum.

OUTDOORS - "Ah, the feel of the warm sun, the soft whisper of wind, the pain of
the rabid wolf knawing at my leg... I love nature!" You'll see a mountain, a
jumping fish, or a windy road.

EXERCISE - "Listen up tubby! I'm gonna get you in shape! My abs are so flat
that you can calibrate a leveler on them!" Sims talking about this will have a
swimmer, a hiker, or a dumbell in their word bubble.

FOOD - "*belch* Oh... pass me a Tums... and cover it in bacon." You'll see a
spoon and fork, a turkey leg, or a cup of coffee here.

PARTIES - "Woo hoo! Shake that funky booty! Where the hell are my drinks?"
You'll see balloons, a party hat, or a cake.

STYLE - "Looks like someone forgot their Rayban Sunglasses! Oh wait, they're in
my back pocket, never mind." You'll see a high heel shoe, a pair of sunglasses,
or a long tie.

HOLLYWOOD - "Mmm... Sandra Bullock... *drool*" You'll see a movie camera, a
director's plate, or a film reel here.

TECHNOLOGY - "Get that piece of crap out of here! What do you think I can do
with only a 5GHz processor?" You can see a computer disk (aren't those, um,
obsolete by now?), a plug, or a computer mouse.

ROMANCE - "My darling, I love you beyond anything you can possibly imagine.
Will you... move already? You're blocking the TV!" You'll see the male and
female symbols, a pair of lips, or a heart with Cupid's arrow through it.

All 15 interests can be incresed by buying magazines downtown. Once you make
your purchase (each is less than §10) and get home, your sim will put the mag
on the closest available surface. Any sim can then read it and increase an

There are 5 magazines, and each one provides three interests that can be

WhooNoo!!! increases Style, Hollywood, or Romance.

Livin' Large boosts The 60s, Music, and Parties.

The Avarix brings up Money, Politics, and Technology.

Victors' Digest juices Weather, Sports, and Food.

MAXSIMUM spews Travel, Outdoors, and Exercise.

The magazines only last a few days, then get outdated. At that point, you can
only throw it away, although you can always go buy the next issue.

Each interest can be brought up to 10, just like job skills. However, there is
a cap, so no sim can be interested in everything. As a sim starts reading a
magazine, a pink progress bar will appear over their head, like when they gain
skills. When it tops off, you may or may not be alerted, but your sim will gain
a point of that interest.

The cap is 76 total points. Once you hit that, you can still gain interests,
but points will be taken away from something else at random. However, no
magazine will take away points from another of its interests. For example,
let's say you've hit the cap, but you're still reading about Travel. The mag
for Travel is MAXSIMUM, so when you do score another point for Travel, it will
not be taken away from Outdoors or Exercise. The other 12 are fair game,

Interests gain FAST. The first point only takes around 10 minutes, and you can
gain all 10 in only 6-1/2 hours of reading.


Don't ask me why it's taken as long as version 1.9 for me to actually include

The astrological signs of your sims, which are based on the sim's personality,
can seriously affect relationships. With conflicting zodiac signs, it will take
longer to get two sims befriended and in love. Also, with conflicting signs,
all social interactions (Hug, Kiss, whatever) have a much higher chance of

On the other hand, compatible signs will help relationships. All social
interactions have a better chance of being accepted, and some will be available
much earlier. It takes a shorter amount of time to induce love, but no two sims
can be friends until the daily meter hits +50 no matter what the sign.

The following sub-sections will list the signs in chronological order. First,
I'll list the in-game description (IGD) of the sign. You can access this by
clicking the Personality button, then clicking the name of the zodiac sign.
After that, I'll say what precisely that description means in game terms (DEF),
such as what roles a sim of a particular sign excells at. Then, I'll list the
compatiable signs (Good Signs, GS for short) and the incompatible signs (Bad
Signs, BS for short). Finally, just for laughs, I'll list the lyrics of the
sign from Weird Al Yankovic's song "Your Horoscope for Today" (WAL).

|9a. Aquarius|

IGD: Friendly and amusing, Aquarians are excellent companions. Being well
balanced in other areas helps to make them one of the most agreeable signs.

DEF: A sim with the Aquarius sign has high Outgoing and Nice stats, plus decent
Playful ratings. The other two are balanced. This makes the sim very
susceptible to the benefits of parties; throw a bunch if this one is in the

GS: Capricorn, Sagittarius

BS: Scorpio, Virgo

WAL: There's travel in your future when your tongue freezes to the back of a
speeding bus. Fill that void in your pathetic life by playing Whack-a-Mole 17
hours a day.

|9b. Pisces|

IGD: Selfless and kind, Pisces are one of the nicest signs. They're active too.
However, this combination can make them emotionally restless and indecisive.

DEF: Nice and Active are high, with decent Outgoing and a balance between the
other two. A sim with this sign is the best way to make Pete (check my alpha
strategy). This sim is almost too effective being a cook who only makes friends
to help the other sims in the family.

GS: Scorpio, Gemini

BS: Leo, Aries

WAL: Try to avoid any Virgos or Leos with the Ebola Virus. You are the true
lord of the dance, no matter what those idiots at work say.

|9c. Aries|

IGD: Dynamic and confidant, most Aries never shy away from the opportunity to
strike up a conversation with anyone. However, they can be somewhat impulsive
and quick-tempered.

DEF: Low Nice and Playful, but high Outgoing. This sim is a moderate challenge;
with low nice, you have to be careful what actions you choose. If you try to
insult a sim that doesn't like to be insulted, the high Outgoing is going to
hurt. Plus, with high Outgoing, the sim needs to be social more often, thus
increasing the chance of having bad relationships.

GS: Gemini, Taurus

BS: Cancer, Libra

WAL: The look on your face will be priceless when you find that 40-pound
watermelon in your colon. Trade toothbrushes with an albino dwarf, and give a
hickey to Meryl Streep.

|9d. Taurus|

IGD: The typical Taurus is strong-willed and determined. That can often mean
determined to have a good time.

DEF: High Playful, and the rest is balanced. These sims have fun and don't mind
company. These sims, like Aquarians, really benefit from parties.

GS: Aries, Libra

BS: Virgo, Cancer

WAL: You will never find true happiness; whatchya gonna do, cry about it? The
stars predict tomorrow you'll wake up to a bunch of stuff and then go back to

|9e. Gemini|

IGD: Youthful and lively, many think Gemini have enough energy for two. Also
energized by conversation, it isn't surprising to find them bouncing from one
topic to the next at parties.

DEF: High Outgoing and Active, with higher Neat than the last two. This is
another good one for Pete in my alpha strategy. A Gemini can make friends
pretty fast, and while he's not, he can clean and cook.

GS: Pisces, Virgo

BS: Capricorn, Aries

WAL: Your birthday party will be ruined once again by your explosive
flatulence. Your love life will run into trouble when your fiancée hurls a
javelin through your chest.

|9f. Cancer|

IGD: There is nothing extreme about Cancers--they are very balanced. They can
also be very changeable which can be good or bad depending on the situation.

DEF: Balance, balance, balance. In theory, this sim has no weakness. However,
because he has no weakness, that in and of itself may be a weakness. After all,
because no one stat is low, you'll need to attend to all his needs regularly.
This could be mean more work for you if you're new; then again, it may also be
a good way to train yourself. Try him out; having one sim with 5s all the way
across the board is good for the neighborhood.

GS: Taurus, Scorpio

BS: Gemini, Aries

WAL: The position of Jupiter says that you should spend the rest of the week
face-down in the mud. Try not to shove a roll of duct tape up your nose while
taking your driver's test.

|9g. Leo|

IGD: The ultimate 'people' people, Leos are complete extroverts. Unfortunately,
this makes them deficient in other areas.

DEF: The in-game description says it all. Leos have high, if not max, Outgoing.
Nice is up there as well, which means Neat, Playful, and Active are all
relatively low. Leos get kicks out of parties, but because they're not active
nor playful, they don't get too much pleasure out of life aside from reading
books. Of course, that also means that the sim won't get as distracted as most
will by bright and shiny things.

GS: Sagittarius, Cancer

BS: Capricorn, Gemini

WAL: Now is not a good time to photocopy your butt and staple it to your boss's
face. Eat a bucket of tuna-flavored pudding and wash it down with a gallon of
Strawberry Qwik.

|9h. Virgo|

IGD: Modest and shy, introverted Virgos take pride in their meticulous and
practical approach to life. Unfortunately, these same traits can also result in
a very fussy individual.

DEF: Low Neat and Outgoing are complimented by high Active and decent Nice and
Playful. These guys are almost custom-made to work, because their low Outgoing
will slow the Social meter enough to make it not be any kind of distraction to
get up the career ladders. The more time spent away from home, the better; just
make sure that you don't neglect their skill gains. By the way, I am a Virgo.

GS: Aquarius, Sagittarius

BS: Leo, Taurus

WAL: All Virgos are extremely friendly and intelligent EXCEPT FOR YOU. Expect a
big surprise today when you wind up with your head impaled upon a stick.

|9i. Libra|

IGD: Romantic and charming and incredibly sociable, it's hard not to like a
Libra. However, their social pursuits leave them leave them little time for
more practical endeavors.

DEF: High Outgoing and Nice, decent Playful, low Active and Neat. Another good
choice for Pete, Libras love parties and dates. With an obscenely high Outgoing
rating, you need to make sure these sims have plenty of people to talk to all
the time.

GS: Virgo, Cancer

BS: Pisces, Scorpio

WAL: A big promotion is just around the corner for someone much more talented
than you. Laughter is the very best medicine; remember that when your appendix
bursts next week.

|9j. Scorpio|

IGD: While somewhat withdrawn from social activities, Scorpios are forceful and
determined in more practical pursuits.

DEF: The complete opposite of Libras, Scorpios boast decent to high Active and
Neat, though their Outgoing and Nice suffer. This makes them custom made to get
out of the house and work.

GS: Pisces, Leo

BS: Libra, Aquarius

WAL: Get ready for an unexpected trip when you fall screaming from an open
window. Work a little bit harder on your low self-esteem, you stupid freak.

|9k. Sagittarius|

IGD: Jovial and carefree Sagittarians are also blessed with boundless energy.
Unfortunately, this combination can also make them restless and careless.

DEF: Extremely high Active is the star of the show here. High Outgoing and
decent Playful are present also, though that makes Nice low and Neat
non-existant. That means they'll be in dirty houses, but they'll be able to
entertain guests despite cockroaches. However, make sure they're always in a
good mood, because they are pretty quick to get some negative interactions

GS: Pisces, Capricorn

BS: Libra, Scorpio

WAL: All your friends are laughing behind your back... KILL THEM. Take down all
those naked pictures of Ernest Borge that you've got hanging in your den.

|9l. Capricorn|

IGD: Armed with a dry wit, Capricorns can often be found telling a good joke.
Also being very practical, they strive for order and discipline.

DEF: Capricorns have high Outgoing. The other four stats are balanced, though
Active normally is a point more than the others. They have no glaring
weaknesses as long as there are other sims to talk to, and they're not so
social that jobs are dangerous. This sign is excellent for a worker as long as
he doesn't live alone.

GS: Aquarius, Taurus

BS: Leo, Gemini

WAL: The stars say that you're an exciting and wonderful person, but you know
they're lying. If I were you, I'd lock my doors and windows and never never
never never never leave my house again.

||10. DOWNTOWN||

(note: this only works if you have Hot Date installed)

Before the Hot Date expansion, your sims could not leave the lot. Now, they
have the option to call a cab to head to the big city. To initiate it, click a
phone in your house, then Call Cab. For §50, one adult sim can get a ride
downtown. Be aware that the game will save when you do so, so make sure you
WANT it saved first.

You're taken to a screen like the Neighborhood Screen, but it shows the
downtown lots. If you hover the taxi cursor over a building, you can get a
short description of it. To pick one, simply click it.

Once downtown, you cannot enter Buy Mode or Build Mode, but more on that later.
You can only use that one sim, and you can't save. I know the technical reason,
but let's not deal with it. If you want to know, toss me an e-mail.

Anyway, as soon as you're downtown, you can do whatever you wish. There are
shops, places to eat, recreational places, and other things. The moment you
arrive to any place, a hoard of other sims show up, including any others that
you moved into houses already, although they won't cross neighborhoods. That
is, if you're visiting downtown with a sim from neighborhood 1, you won't find
one from neighborhood 2 running around.

There are several actions that were added specifically for the downtown area.
The initial two, "Let's Hang Out?" and "Let's Date?," are explained in a
moment. Like all other actions, they can be accepted or declined based on any
number of factors.

Again, because I don't want to ruin the game for anyone, I won't go into
details about every little thing in Downtown. It's all pretty self-explanatory

What I will do, however, is have a word about saving and leaving downtown. In
every downtown lot, there will be a big yellow phone. You can use that to call
a cab to go home for free, or to go somewhere else for another §50.

In order to save the game, you'll need to get back home. If your game crashes
or you quit while you're downtown, the game will load you back at your house.
The budget you had while you were downtown WILL save, but your relationships

|10a. Having a Date or Friend With You Downtown|

You can have up to one other adult sim accompany your sim downtown. This is a
standard interaction, and can also be initated over the phone with no extra
clicks. I've never known it to be rejected, but you never know.

To get someone to go downtown with you, you have three options, depending on
where both sims are. Let's say Pyro wants to invite Steph downtown for my

Scenario 1: Steph is at Pyro's house (whether she's living there or just
visiting). Click Pyro to make him the active sim, then click Steph, and "Invite
Downtown" should be an interaction. Click it, and Steph will hopefully accept
(it's almost guaranteed to be accepted, but there's a slim chance it won't be,
depending on moods). Pyro will then call a cab automatically, and both will go
downtown together.

Scenario 2: Pyro is already downtown and sees Stephanie. Again, make Pyro the
active sim, and click Steph. This time, click the interaction "Ask..." You'll
be presented with two options: "Let's Hang Out?" and "Let's Date?." If you
select "Let's Hang Out?," that's non-love inducing, made for friends. "Let's
Date?" is for a romantic thing, so your target will expect different things.
She'll immediately start following you around in either case if she accepts.

Scenario 3: Pyro is at home and Steph is in her own house. With Pyro as the
active sim, click a phone, and select Steph from the list. You'll be given
three options: "Talk," "Invite Over," and "Invite Somewhere." Click the third
one, and you'll be presented with two more choices: "Invite Downtown" and
"Invite On Vacation." Select the first, and Steph will hopefully accept. Pyro
will then hang up, and automatically call a cab. Choose whichever lot you want
to, and Steph will show up there at the same time you do.

Once you're downtown, your date or friend will have a tiny blue crystal over
their head. This indicates their mood (just like your green crystal): the bluer
it is, the happier the sim is. If the crystal turns purple to red, you have a
problem. The crystal is the ONLY way you'll know their mood. Why's that, you
ask? Simple, and make sure you memorize this: YOU CAN'T CONTROL DATES WHILE

Yeah, it sucks, but I didn't program the game. A command that you need to get
real intimate with is "Ask..." then "How are you?." The target will tell you
what mood meter is the lowest. Fix that as soon as possible.

The date will follow you around like a sheep and will do whatever you're doing
if it's a social activity. If you order food, you'll order for the both of you
(and pay for both). If you dance on a dance floor, your date will join you. I
don't need to go on with examples, I hope.

I should point out here that the date is a little too willing when you do
things Downtown. I don't mean social interactions; see, if you elect to go to
the bathroom, your date probably follow you into it. If you decide to dance on
a dance floor, your date will follow you and do that too.

This is all very nice, but there's a minor problem: your date has a hideously
short memory. See, she can only remember the LAST COMMAND you entered.
Therefore, you can't queue up eight different actions and assume that she'll do
every one. You must enter them one at a time... for example, if you know you'll
need to go to the bathroom after you eat, then enter the eating command first,
wait for it to be finished, THEN enter the bathroom command. If you don't, your
date may follow you into the bathroom without eating. So, take the date one
step and action at a time.

Once your sim gets real friendly with the other, and the other's mood is high
(its crystal is deep blue), you can attempt to invite the sim back to your
house. Well, you can make the ATTEMPT anytime, but it's likely to fail if you
don't time it right. The mood and relationship meters of the target must be
relatively high before it will be accepted.

Be careful with that command. The two quickest ways to end a date are to run
out of money and get too personal. If you ask someone you just met to come home
with you, you'll probably not only be rejected and lose a LARGE chunk off the
relationship meter, but that sim will walk away, leaving you the only one

Of course, if the sim already lives with you, there's no option and you can't
be walked away from.

While downtown, you can click another sim and try the Let's Date? or Let's Hang
Out? options. If accepted, the other sim gets the blue crystal and follows you.
You don't have to have a friend or date to talk to strangers, but you can't
dance or order food for strangers.

By the way, make sure you say goodbye to the sim when you're ready to call it a
night. If you just leave without saying goodbye, your date may take offense and
send the relationship back a few steps. Just as if you wanted them to vacate
your house, try to pick something that's appropiate to the situation; in other
words, don't kiss a stranger.

|10b. Constructing Buildings|

Like everything else in The Sims, you can completely overhaul the downtown area
and make your own lots. On the neighborhood screen, there's a button that looks
like a small group of buildings, just to the right of the bulldozer. That will
switch you over to the downtown screen, and you can click any lot to edit. Of
course, you can also click the bulldozer and flatten a lot first.

Veterans of The Sims used to set aside one lot or two as party houses before
this expansion pack. They'd use the money code to get millions of simoleons and
build a customized party place.

Now, you can do the same thing without wasting a lot. When you click a lot from
the downtown screen, you can edit and build WITHOUT REGARDS TO MONEY. You have
infinite cash to buy or build whatever you want. Play around!

The Build and Buy modes work exactly the same as they do when you're messing
with families. The only exception is that certain items available to families
won't be available downtown, and vice versa.

Once you decide to save your lot, you'll be asked to enter a name and a short

In order to build shops, there are three essential ingredients: a cash
register, a desk for the cash register, and something to sell. When in Buy
Mode, click the Shop sort to get all these items.

The cash register will make a shopkeeper appear once you visit the lot with a
sim, so don't worry about that. The game knows what people will be needed to
staff your shops, so you can concentrate on building.

The fancy, antique cash register makes a person in a suit appear, while the
modern register spawns someone who looks like they came from K-Mart (in other
words, unemployed). This is meaningless in practice, but it helps give your
store a certain look. After all, do you want that moron from your high school
gym class handling that diamond necklace for your spouse?

The desks that the registers go on don't matter in the slightest, except again
to enhance the look of the store.

Under the miscellaneous items subsort of the shops sort are the items your sims
will buy from. They include candy racks, magazine racks, jewelry displays, and
clothing closets. Simply place one, and your sims can interact with it.

I suggest that you make a throwaway family for testing. I keep a one-person
family in my barracks named "Ester the Tester." I move her in whenever I make a
new lot, then send her to that lot to test that everything works right. It's
very easy to forget a door or cash register if you're making a bunch of shops
on the same lot. Of course, with 10 lots, you may not have to pack everything
in the same area, but I have one lot set for a mall.

Anyway, you can also make parks and restaurants. Simply click the dining or
outside subsorts, and you'll get items for those.

While I don't have much experience making parks, I know quite a bit about
restaurants. The essential thing you'll need is the podium. That is where your
sim will order food. You'll also need a few tables and chairs. Since no more
than two sims will sit at any one table, you can arrange the place accordingly.

When you make the dining area, make sure that it's technically in the same room
as the podium, or the maîte d' will tell you that their tables are full. This
is annoying, but not too bad. If you want a door, you can make an artificial
one. Check out this ASCII art...


|                                  |
|                                  |
|                                  |
|                                  +------------------+
|                                  |                  |
|                                  D                  |
|         DINING AREA              |      LOBBY    P  D
|                                  D                  |
|                                  |                  |
|                                  +------------------+
|                                  |

Let's say this is how you want your restaurant. Since the lobby is in a
separate room, the person behind the podium will insist that their tables are
full, regardless whether there's a door. You can do two things about this. The
easiest is to knock out the divider wall:

|                                  |
|                                  |
|                                  |
|                                  +------------------+
|                                                     |
|                                                     |
|         DINING AREA                     LOBBY    P  D
|                                                     |
|                                                     |
|                                  +------------------+
|                                  |

I do this, then color the walls and floors differently in both sections
(although if you do so, you can't use the SHIFT-click shortcut since the lobby
becomes the same room as the dining area). The other solution is to make a
"fake door"...

|                                  |
|                                  |
|                                  |
|                                  +------------------+
|                                  |                  |
|                                                     |
|         DINING AREA              |      LOBBY    P  D
|                                                     |
|                                  |                  |
|                                  +------------------+
|                                  |

In this one, there is no door, but there's no wall either. Technically, they're
the same room, but it has the same effect as if you used the open frame door.
This way, like the way above, removes the SHIFT-click shortcut, but if you
wanted everything to be the same, it wouldn't matter anyway.

Of course, you can combine everything in the first place to save yourself the

|                                  |
|                                  |
|                                  |
|                                  |
|            LOBBY                 |
|              &                P  D
|         DINING AREA              |
|                                  |
|                                  |
|                                  |
|                                  |

Your design, as always, is up to you.

Be sure to get bathrooms and decorations somewhere, too. Remember, no sim likes
wetting itself (although seeing a dozen sims parcipate in Syncronized Peeing
would make a nifty snapshot).


Poor sims... they never get weekends, and they can only take one day off at a
time. They're worked like dogs during the week and deserve some time off.
Downtown is a nice little distraction, but you certainly can't spend all day
down there. Besides, those overworked kids can't head Downtown at all. What's a
sim family to do?

That's where Vacation Island comes in. For a rather large fee, you can take one
entire sim family to the island, where you can socialize and improve all meters
without regards to time, jobs, or skill gains. Or, if your family is composed
of only a couple, they can head to the island for a romantic getaway.

Vacations can cost a rather large sum of money. You'll probably need around
§2000 in your hand to have any sort of vacation longer than a few days. I'd
recommend that you have at least about §3500 if you have a large family that is
going to stay for a week or longer. Don't worry about staying too long; jobs
and schools don't care, and your relationships won't decay at all while you're
on Vacation Island.

Before you leave, go into Buy Mode, and head to the Surfaces sort. Look around
for Curio shelves; these are little wall-mounted shelves on which your sims
will put their souvineers from their trip. Part of the fun of the island is the
booty you bring back from it, so make sure you have the room to put it
somewhere first!

To go on vacation, first make sure that the WHOLE FAMILY is in the house.
You'll be denied entrance if anyone is at work or school. Make any adult sim
the active sim, then click a phone. Click the "Call Cab" option, then "Go on
Vacation." You'll have to pay an upfront fee of §500. The family will pile into
the jeep that pulls up, and the game will save.

You'll then be taken to another lot selection screen. This is Vacation Island,
full of games and other stuff!

There are nine lots, divided into three climates. The northern part of the map
has three lots in the snowy mountains. The bottom three are on the warm beach.
Between them are three lots in the woods.

The climate of your chosen lot is very important. Starting with Vacation (and
only on Vacation Island), the weather will have an impact on your sims' moods.
If your sim is wearing clothes that conflicts with the temperature, his or her
comfort will shoot down rather quickly. Practically each lot has a changing
station, so you can easily switch to a swimsuit for the beach, winterwear for
the mountains, or normal clothes for the forest.

Since you just got there, you'll need to find a place to sleep. There are
several hotels on the island, but you can also rough it and sleep in an igloo
or tent. Igloos and tents can only hold a maximum of two people however, so if
your family is larger, you'll either need a hotel room or more money for more

Look around for a hotel for now. I personally give props to the hotel on the
west-central lot, #43. It's called Bear Essentials (get the pun? HA HA HA HA
HA!), and it's a great starting place to get your feet wet. Because it's
location is in the forest, you also won't have to worry about other clothes.

Click it, then look around once the game loads. Once you get your bearings,
grab an adult sim, and click the front desk. You can then check in, which will
cost you §120. Accept, and every sim (both child and adult) will get a hotel
key. Now, oddly enough, the keys work for EVERY HOTEL on the island (not the
igloos or tents). So if you get bored with the forest hotel, you can switch
over to the winter or beach hotel anytime without extra cost.

Okay, here's how the hotels work, and it's really weird. The key more or less
gives you access to the bed, and that's it. You can use the toilet and shower
in any room anytime you want. With the key in hand, you can use any bed. The
reason all your family members get keys is so you can theoretically have each
one sleep in a separate room. I doubt you have eight people, all of whom hate
each other, but whatever.

Check out time is noon every day. In order to check out, simply click the desk
again and choose the option. If you keep the key past noon, you're charged for
another night, costing you another §120. Of course, if you WANT to stay another
night, by all means keep it. You never have to check out if you don't want to.

All the hotels have banquet tables for food, and most lots have grills that let
you cook six hamburgers for §20. Every lot has its own house keeping staff, so
don't worry about cleaning up anything. This is a place of play, not work.

Okay, now that you've got a hotel key and you're fed, it's time to have some
fun! All the lots have things to do, though some lots have more to do than
others. There are arcades in the north-central and southwest lots. Each arcade
has several games you can play to win Gold Tokens. These can be redeemed at
souvineer booths, all conviently located near the games. You can buy several
spiffy things; my favorite is the stuffed penguin, since I'm a fan of the
Pittsburgh Penguins.

The games all cost money to play. The costs are cheap, but several hundred
plays could add up. Play them to your heart's content. One particular game
seems to have much better odds than the others, and I'll be darned if I tell
you here what it is. Play all the games, and you'll see which one it is for
yourself. Also, KoRnRulz1987 ( told me that a sim's Body
skill relates to its success in the games too.

The games only boost your Fun meter a few points, so if it's rather low or you
already have a lot of tokens, you may want to try other things. Fishing is a
good way to boost the Fun meter, and if there are other fishers, you'll get hit
with a boost to your Social meter too. There's a slim chance you may find some
treasure, too.

Or, you may want to rent a metal dectector from the rental shacks. Your sim
will wander around the lot, looking for buried treasure. While you'll probably
wind up with a few simoleans and maybe an old boot or two, there are other,
niftier prizes you can win with a bit of luck.

If you don't want to even bother with treasures and souvineers, you can play a
game of volleyball with other sims. The game goes on eternally, and sims can
join or leave whenever they wish. When a point is made, all the sims on the
scoring team get a boost to their relationships with each other. This is a
great way of getting to know more people, since everyone who appears on
Vacation Island is new and independent of Downtown, you'll get to know quite a
group of people.

Other options for fun are snowboarding, archery, and a number of other things.
Explore; unlike Downtown, it doesn't cost any money to change lots.

Your sims' energy will eventually start fading. If you want to do things the
easy way, just head to any hotel and grab a bed.

If you want to do things the fun way though, get an igloo or tent. Only one
person or one couple can be in a tent or igloo at once; it works like a double
bed in that sense. Once a sim is inside an igloo or tent, a sim that is in love
with him or her can choose the command "Play with [name]." They then proceed to
play Extreme Doctor, after which they'll both fall asleep. One of the sims will
unfortunately wake up with zero comfort, but both sims' social and fun meters
will be maxxed out.

If you want your sims to play Find the Soap, you can get them into a hot tub
and choose Play as well. There's a hot tub convinetly located in Lot #43, the
one with the hotel I pointed you to earlier. Playing in that sense gives a
rather superb boost to relationship and Social meters, and playing in the hot
tub will also boost Hygiene, Comfort, and Fun levels at the same time.

The vacation directors are constantly monitoring your family's moods. If you
manage to keep all your sims' moods high during a long vacation, you may get a
special award. I got a Golden Pinecone, although I'm sure there are others.
This can also be placed on your shelves for trips down memory lane.

Whenever you're ready to go home, simply click a phone, and choose "Go Home."
All relationship and money changes will save, and you'll be taken home with
your trophies. Once your sims are dropped off on their lot, they'll
automatically look for places to put their things. The big ones, like the
Stuffed Penguin, need an endtable or desk. The small ones, like the Coconut
Monkey and Old Boots, can be placed on the shelves. You can move them around
manually in Buy Mode if you need to do some rearranging. If you run out of room
or just get bored with something, you can sell any of your souvineers. The
amounts are scaled to how rare the item is (the boots are only worth §17, for
example), but even the most rare ones aren't worth too much.

Once your sims place their prizes, any sim can interact with it at anytime. The
sim will pick up the prize and remember his or her trip, and if any other
family member is in the room, they'll remember with them. Friends who are there
can share the memory as well, making it a perfect party topic.

The sim's moods when they found the item stays attached TO the item. So, if
they found an old boot in a bad mood, they'll have bad memories of it. But, if
they found a treasure chest while they were in a good mood, they'll have
fantastic memories of it. If a good or bad memory is attached to a souvineer,
that will rub off on them when they remember; that is, if they remember a bad
vacation, their mood will plummet.

Vacations are, in short, excellent places to enhance family relationships and
extend a sim's network of friends. They're very good breaks from the routine
days of work, sleep, and skill gains. Take one sometime if you have extra
money; your sims will thank you.

|11a. Having a date with you on vacation|

You can take one date with you to Vacation Island in a similar way that you
take someone on a date to Downtown. This only works with people who aren't
living with you, because you need to actually call them, it's not an

Okay, first, grab a phone and call your target. Click the "Invite Somewhere"
button, then select "On Vacation." If the target accepts (I've never seen it be
declined), then your active sim will immediately call for the jeep and go on

Now, there are some fantastic advantages here. First of all, you can EASILY
exploit the time freeze to get that person to +100/+100 without having any
other relationship decay. The person who you are with won't need to go to work
(neither will you, for that matter).

The family won't come with you, which means you can spend more money on
yourself and your date. Also, any tokens and prizes that your date wins in
games converts to YOUR inventory. Nice way to get some tokens for a Penguin!

The only problem, if it is one, is that your date is out of your control, just
like Downtown. He or she will have a blue crystal over their head, and the
bluer it is, the better. Make sure he's or she's well fed and entertained, and
you should have nothing to worry about.

Here's an example of how you can seriously use this to your advantage. I
created a one-person family, the person being a hot chick named Kelly National.
Now, I decided to run the Bill Gates of Gnomes strategy with her (her house
will eventually be the party house of SimNation). But, because it's only a
one-person house, I needed her to constantly call people over to keep her
Social meter alive. The problem was, she worked on gnomes at night, and was
asleep during the day, so she never met anyone to call over.

Enter Pete Falkon! Using the Falkons as the active family (and because they're
the richest), I had Pete and Kelly meet. Then, he invited her on vacation, and
the two stayed there for a good two weeks or so until they were +100/+100 to
each other.

Then I saved it and made Kelly the active family. She could call up Pete
anytime and he'd bounce right over, they'd make out for a few hours, and then
she'd send him home. That gave her Social meter the kick it needed, and the
rest of her needs were taken care of in-house. She's already hosting hot
parties (not the hotest, though... I'm still working on that).

I've found a minor issue with having a date on vacation, and one you need to be
wary of. This is also a problem Downtown, but it's WAY more prominent on
Vacation Island.

Your date has a bad memory. As such, you cannot queue up more than one action
at a time. For example, let's say your sim just woke up. You order him to go to
the bathroom, take a shower, then head to the buffet table. Your date will not
have the memory to remember all that; what she'll probably do is attempt the
toilet, ignore the shower, and starve by forgetting all about the food

So, you have to run your date one step and one action at a time. Here's the
deal: first, issue the toilet command. If your date doesn't need to go, that's
fine, let her watch you, or whatever. Then, once your sim is done, order him to
take a shower. Hopefully, his date will then do the same. But, here's the
important part: do NOT give an additional command until the shower is finished!
After that, head downstairs BESIDE the buffet table (use a Go Here command).
Once your date is next to you, THEN grab the plate. If you're halfway across
the building and directly choose "Grab a Plate," your date won't see it, and
she may not eat anything.

Again, you basically need to work on your date slowly. Take every action one
step at a time, and use Go Here commands liberally to make sure your date
always sees what precisely you're doing.


(note: this only works if you have House Party installed)

Once you have a bunch of families in your neighborhood, plenty of room, and
tons of money, you can initate All Hell And Chaos Mode, also called a "party."

Parties are, in practice, like going to a downtown lot. However, parties are
far more variable, and far more fun. A bunch of sims will show up to your door,
eat your food, clog your toilets, and play with your toys, all while doing
little to help you. Basically, all the visitors become like Fat Uncle Charlie,
that one relative you just don't want to see.

Your guests will need food, entertainment, and bathrooms. You could make food,
you could have a TV, you could have your one or two bathrooms, but don't expect
anyone to enjoy themselves.

There are two major, MAJOR buys I recommend; without either, don't even bother
trying to hold a party. The first is the buffet table, somewhere under the
appliance sort. It's a refillable table that instantly fills with food with a
simple command. Filling the table costs you §100, but if you're expecting a
large crowd, that just may not be enough. In that case, it would be best to
hire caterer. To do so, click a phone, then sevices, then caterer. He'll charge
§350, but he'll be there all day and everytime he fills the table, it's free.
That means he pays for himself in four fills, not to mention the fact that
you'll actually have time to socialize. He's automated too, so you won't have
to do a thing as long as he's provided a table. The caterer also fills punch
bowls, but the buffet table is far more important.

The second major item you need is the bathroom stall. Generally, if a sim is
going to the bathroom, he or she doesn't want anyone to come into the same room
(although once they love each other, that limitation is removed). However, if
you're sporting stalls, then as many sims as there are stalls can be in the
same room and they won't care. This also applies to port-a-potties, but who
wants to go in one of those?

I suggest you make a special party room that's a little bit away from the rest
of your house. Make a large bathroom adjacent to it, and fill the bathroom with
stalls and sinks (no mirrors or showers). Obviously you want to throw your
buffet tables and punch bowls in the party room, too. You'll need at least two
or three tables and plenty of chairs too.

Entertainment is a little easier. While no one just wants to watch TV, having
one is certainly a good idea. The best things to have are those that allow a
bunch of people to join in. The campside fireplace, which can only be placed
outside, holds a whopping EIGHT sims. Indoors, stick with pinball machines,
dance floors, stereos, pool tables, and the big train set. All of those ensure
that every single sim will have something to do whenever it gets bored.

Another fun item is the cake. Once you buy the big cake (under the
miscellaneous items sort), you can click it to hire a male or female dancer.
Everyone loves those kinds of dancers, don't they? (By the way, don't worry
about those innocent kiddies... if there are any children in the party, the
dancer will be something weird like a purple gorilla or the tragic clown in his
boxer shorts. This information comes from Cameron ( Also
don't neglect the item called Bezique's Folly Card Game, which is a fancy name
for charades. This, like the cake, entertain unlimited numbers of sims.

Once you're ready, click a phone, then click "Throw Party." In effect, you're
calling one person, who then calls everyone else that you know. Soon enough,
everyone in the world will show up on your doorstep. You won't have to greet
them, luckily. They'll ring the doorbell, but then let themselves in.

There are several ways you can tell how successful your party is. None of these
work until a few game hours pass, so don't expect instant ratings.

BAD PARTIES get the mime. You'll know that he's going to appear via a pop-up
box that, well, pops up. If he appears, it's a sign that something's wrong. You
may want to double check your food, entertainment, and bathroom locations and
fix it for the next party.

NEUTRAL PARTIES don't get any visual indication. If a party goes smoothly and
people leave with smiles, then you did well. While there is room for
improvement, you can pat yourself on the back with pride.

GOOD PARTIES get party crashers, although that's not entirely a good thing.
These are just random people who look like they lost a fight with a can of
paint, and they come into your house just like Fat Uncle Charlie does... at
least your guests talk to you. The only interaction you have with a party
crasher is to ask them to leave. If you do so, a box will pop up with their
protest, but they'll exit the house. Beware though... once they exit the house,
they'll hang outside for a few minutes, then come right back in. As long as
you're not cooking, you shouldn't worry about it. The caterer doesn't care one
iota, so neither should you.

GREAT PARTIES will be interrupted by a special guest in addition to the party
crasher. None other than the famous Drew Carey, star of the self-titled sitcom
and guest competitor of the 2001 WWF Royal Rumble, will appear. You can't do
anything to him, but he'll go around and talk to everyone. He'll leave
eventually, but if he appears at all, you can celebrate hosting a fantastic

Parties are a great way to expand or enhance your network of friends. There's
just one major problems in general, but it's actually the main reason I hold
parties in the first place.

See, all visitors will be out of your control, as normal. However, they don't
understand who they love and who they don't.

Due to my strategy, I typically have every male in love with every girl, and
vice versa (yes, it's weird). This becomes REAL entertaining when one sim
decides to make a move. It causes a domino effect that makes about a half-dozen
sims get angry and jealous. Indirectly, this situation once caused a casualty
at one of my parties. I'll go into details of that little incident in my
Disasters section.

You cannot throw parties until you have enough people. I think the limit is 10
people or 5 families, whichever is lesser, but I haven't tested it. Before you
hit that point, the Throw Party option won't appear on the phone.

||13. KIDS||

Kids. They're so cute and innocent at that age. AWWWWWWWWWWW!!!

Kids are an optional part of The Sims. You can create kids when you create
families, but I tend not to due to cost. You see, in my humble opinion, sim
kids are wastes of money, time, and air. They do make the game more
challenging, but kids are pretty much worthless otherwise. They can't get jobs
and any money they earn is from Grandpa for good grades, which happens too
infrequently since you only get 100 bucks.

However, if you wish to have a kid, there's plenty of ways to get one.
Occasionally, you may be asked via a phone call if you want to adopt one. If
you accept, then there's no muss, no fuss.

If you want two sims to procreate (and yes, they have to be opposite genders),
then just keep doing extremely romantic actions back and forth, and you may get
a dialouge box that says "Should we have a baby?"

However you get one, the gender will be given to you and you can name it.
Again, I won't list what I call my kids, since CJayC would probably ban me for
life from GameFAQs. We'll go with Pyro Jr. if I need him in an example.

Now, kids are retarded versions of adults. They can do most of what adults can
do, but not everything. They can't cook (although they can grab snacks), and
they can't go into hot tubs for obvious reasons. If an object can only be
manipulated by a child or adult, it will say so in the item description of Buy
Mode. If there is no line like that, either age can use it.

Kids' eight meters and personalities work the same way as adults. Kids can have
relationships with either age, but can't fall in love with anyone. Their
interests are slightly different than adults, but nothing too weird.

Kids do have a "job" of sorts. They have to go to school every day at 7 AM, and
their grade will appear if you click their job button. They can study for
school using a computer or bookcase, but their grade will automatically rise as
long as they're going to school.

Kids cannot be taken downtown.

Despite my feelings on how worthless kids are, RHunterLand
( found a rather convincing use for them...


The Children of a Sim household, besides being very entertaining, are EXTREMELY
beneficial, have often kept a household a float while mom and dad were
struggling with lack of sleep/depression, another lost job, starting at the
bottom again.

A.   The household has a discount in daily cost for each child.  In other words
with the same items, size etc...your household bills are less AFTER the child
than  income tax deduction.

B.   A child who loves to paint sells their masterpieces for 1 (they'll
paint a minimum of one a day, and consider it great fun.)  The money starts
after they have completed a few paintings, but MUCH, MUCH, MUCH sooner than the
adults larger payments.  Granted NOT ALL of them are artistically inclined, but
for those that are...)

C.   An A+ student can study on the computer and be rewarded 0 from the Sim
Excellence in Education Foundation.   This occurs on a regular basis, is much
more often than grandma/grandpa.

D.   A child's friend is the household's friend, be it another child, or an

E.   when you are having a party, they will SOCIALIZE/minglewith BEFRIEND the
guests. E. A musically inclined child will entertain your guests, something
that all of the guests seem to LOVE.

F.   A child will CLEAN, CLEAN, CLEAN.


Since I have a very distinct way I play the sims (i.e., "greedy bastard"), I
decided to test out the bill worth. I ran two families with identical,
extremely large houses for six days apiece. The first family had one adult. The
second family had one adult and four children. Here's the whopping difference:

                  FAMILY A    FAMILY B
DAY 3 (1st Bill)   §1753       §1047
DAY 6 (2nd Bill)   §1687       §1015
TOTAL 6 DAYS       §3440       §2062


Now, §1378 will buy a frickin' load of stuff, and considering that that's the
total for only SIX days, you can only guess what your savings will be if you
have a kid from the beginning. The difference is around 40%, so I'm guessing
that each kid you have shaves 10% off your bill. In the early days, that won't
be much, but if you think ahead, that will add up to stupid-large amounts.
Maybe having kids isn't so bad after all.

|13a. BABIES|

Of course, kids have to come from somewhere. Babies are the first step to
raising a child if you didn't create one in the Create Sim screen.

Babies take three sim days to become a kid. Babies are also a pain.

First of all, it takes two working people or one unemployed person to care for
a baby, and it's a full-time job. Randomly, the baby will cry, and then it must
be interacted with. Your options are Feed, Play, and Sing. When you sing to a
baby, if it's satisfied with its mood, it will go to sleep for several hours.
If it's not satisfied with its mood, it will keep crying. Once asleep, babies
cannot be woken up for any reason. They will wake up and scream when they darn
well feel like it.

A baby takes three sim days to turn into a kid. Its face and clothes are
random, as are its personality and interests (its personality points can
actually exceed the usual limit of 25). Its skin tone will match one of its
parent's, although you never know what you get when you adopt.

Florist Lillia ( poses a theory about personality...


This probably has a simple explanation, but.. My two Sims, Jim and Diane, had
perfect personalities.. They got together and had little Cathy. When Cathy
turned into a child, I noticed that she, too, had a perfect personality.. Same
for all the other children that they had.  I haven't really experimented with
this, but perhaps the personality isn't so random after all?


...and Green Devil ( confirmed it with numbers...


Let's say Fred and Linda have a baby.  Linda's neat points are 10 and Fred's
neat points are 0.  The baby will either have a 10, a 0, or a 5 for neat
points.  In other words, the baby will either take the mom's neat points, the
dad's neat points, or the average of the two combined.  This works for every
personality trait, except for Playful, which I think is automatically higher,
but I'm not quite sure about that part.


So in other words, if both parents are slobs, then the kid WILL be a slob.
However, if one is a slob and the other is neat, you don't know what you'll
get. At least you won't have to worry about your kids being radically different
than their parents.

Anyway, taking care of babies is easy, but tedious and will shoot your sims'
moods to hell. I'll tell you what I do, but let's remove Pete from the equation
for a moment.

Whenever a baby comes into play, I offset a temporary special room (usually the
living room, if it has a couch) and put the baby bascinet in there (moveable
through Buy Mode, although you can't sell it). While Stephanie goes to work,
Pyro stays home to care for the baby. Once she's home, they trade places; Pyro
goes to work, and Stephanie stays home to care for the kid. Then, Pyro will get
home and care for the kid again, while Stephanie goes to work. That's the three
days, and then they can both relax. This way, no one gets fired.

With Pete in the mix, though, I have another method, shown in the strategy
section. I also detail how precisely to take care of a baby there.


One of the best parts of the SimCity series was the fact you could activate
fires, earthquakes, tornados, and alien invasions on a whim. While there's no
insta-disaster in The Sims, you can still wreck havoc the same way with a bit
of ingenuity.

I'll list all the disasters, how to intentionally do it, and how to prevent it.


HISTORIAN: Man discovered fire in prehistoric times. It has always been a tool,
but a double-edged one at that. It can cook food well, but it can also cook--

PYROFALKON: *sets the historian on fire*

HISTORIAN: It can also cook humans, as my friend here just demonstrated. Wait,
that's not a fake fire. Wait, come back! It burns!
HELP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! *dies*

PYROFALKON: *laughs*

If there is any one disaster you can do off the bat, it's fires. Ovens of all
flavors, including microwaves, toaster ovens, and even grills, can catch flames
and pass them off to your sims or other pieces of furniture. Fires can come
from more than the oven, though. It can result from a flying spark in the
fireplace, or a mishap with the toy rocket.

Fires spread rather quickly, so if one starts, you need to take steps.
Unfortunately, though, sims are stupid. If they're in a room with a fire,
they'll immediately drop whatever they're doing and panic. You have to manually
cancel the panic action (by clicking its icon in the queue), then do something

Sims can extinguish the flames themselves, but it's not always guarenteed to
work. You can call the SimCity Fire Department, but it takes a bit of time for
him to appear. What you can do is have one sim try to extinguish the flame
while another calls for help. Your sim should be able to keep the flame
relatively contained until The Man In Yellow arrives. If there is a smoke alarm
in the room, the SCFD will be summoned automatically.

If a fire is taken care of fast enough, whatever burned will not take damage.
If the fire is allowed to continue, not only can it spread, it could turn
whatever item burned into a pile of ashes. You won't be reimbursed for the lost
item, and you're stuck with a mess that has to be cleaned up.

Death Trav ( shares some information on reducing fire


I have found out a way to minimize fire damage when you have low cooking skill
and you start an oven fire.   You should put the oven at least one square away
from the other kitchen equiptment.  This seems to help stop the damage made by
cooking fires.


If a sim is caught in a fire, its hygiene, comfort, and energy will be sliced.
If the flame around him or her continues, the sim could die. I cover death in a

To prevent a fire from starting, always make sure that whoever cooks food has
at least 1 in the cooking skill. I've made fires happen even then, though; the
safe zone is 3. If you have a fireplace, make sure to put NO object within two
tiles in all directions. As far as the rocket goes, well, there's not too much
you can do about that. If the rocket is far away from other objects, the chance
of something wrong is reduced.

If you want to start a fire, there is one sure way to do so: launch a rocket
inside the house. SOMETHING will catch flames. To ensure that your sim will
burn, simply order them to stand right beside the fire. They will catch shortly
after, and you'll have one sim, extra crispy.

Kain15840 ( gave a short, and rather insane, addition about


There's something i noticed when dealing with rockets. It is entirely possible
for something to catch fire even if there are no objects nearby. Yes, the
rocket can hit the sim playing with the rockets and catch him/her on fire.
Rather funny, actually.



That's happened to me too. Gotta love fire!


I have never actually seen this one, but from what I know, it's relatively
simple. Just have your sim change a light bulb while standing in a puddle of
water. Its Mechanical skill is weighed, I think, and a sim with 10 will never
be killed.

This will cause death to the sim, but nothing else gets damaged.

To prevent it, simply don't change light bulbs while there's water on the
floor. Mop up puddles before changing light bulbs, and you'll be fine.

I think you more or less HAVE to set this up before you see it. Robert Lanciani
( sent me a way to see it...


I have another way to electroute a Sim. First get a sim with a bunch of big
screen TV's (must be a new sim with crappy sills). Next, make a monster potion
(purple) (may take a while). He should smash a few of them. When you are normal
again, try to fix one of them (this is where the crappy skills come in). He
shold die instantly.



This one is popular. Simply get a sim in the pool, then leave them there. When
their energy hits 0, they die. Prevention and intentionally causing should be

Remember in my Party section, I talked about a party that had a casualty? This
was it. I had a pool party, and a few sims jumped in for a swim. After that,
Pete tried to get fresh with Stephanie. Pyro and Sixam, both of whom were in
love with her, ran up and slapped him. Arguments started, and Stephanie went
away to get a piece of cake. (She chose cake over three men? That's sound
thinking, but if it was three chicks fighting in front of one guy, something
tells me that cake would not be as interesting.)

Anyway, this fighting just happened to be occuring in front of the ladder to
the pool. The victim (I can't remember his name now) was the last one in the
water. He swam during the whole fight, then decided he had seen enough.
However, with the three fighters all blocking the ladder for the pool, he had
no means of escape. He panicked and yelled, but the fight was still going on.
Eventually, the victim drowned, and three men made up, probably all the while
laughing at the dead guy.

Ah, memories...


I think this is self-explanatory. If I need to go into detail about how to make
sims eat or not eat, you have larger problems than this FAQ can fix.

|Don't Worry, Be Happy|

The overall mood meter has five levels in both directions, but from what I can
tell it also has a SIXTH level in the positives. If you sim hits that, it can
die of happiness. First it will look like the sim is having a seizure, then it
will collapse and concede to death.

Good luck trying to intentionally cause this, I've only been able to do it
once. It seems slightly random more than anything else. There's no real way to
prevent it since it's VERY hard to get that happy. If you're paranoid, just
make sure at least one meter is partially low, say 90% or less.

|The Repo Man|

If for some reason you can't pay your bills, the repo man will come and take
away an item that has a value around the cost of your bills.

To cause it, don't pay your bills. To prevent it, pay your bills. Yawn.


It doesn't matter how safe you think the neighborhood is, there's always a
moron who steals things from innocent people. The burglar will randomly appear,
and he'll walk into your house, taking whatever he desires.

Once he's on your lot, you're locked out of Buy Mode and Build Mode (to prevent
you from cheating by removing doors or selling items before he gets to them).
You can get one of your sims to call the police department, but since he only
appears at night, your sim will probably be cranky about waking up, and he'll
waste a half hour complaining while the burglar is shopping. Also, once it
knows that a sim is awake, it'll haul ass after getting a few items.

If the burglar is caught, you'll get a §1000 reward, plus the insurance company
will pay you some money to replace your stolen items if in fact he did manage
to steal anything. Sometimes, the insurance company seems to give me money
anyway... I wonder if that's a bug?

You can't intentionally cause this, and I don't really see why you would want
to. To prevent it, put a burglar alarm by your doors. When the burglar steps
close enough, it'll make the most annoying sound in the history of gaming, and
the police will automatically be summoned.

Just make sure you put alarms around EVERY exterior door. I thought that they
only used the front door like house guests, so that's the only one I protected.
When the thief appeared, he apparently SAW the alarm, so he walked out of its
range to the back door. It sucked, he took all my nifty electronics. Grr...

Anyway, there's a way you can guarentee that the thief cannot even reach your
front door, and it's not a cheat. It's in the general strategy section, so take
a peek.

I have a correction here. Both Decesare ( and David
Singleton ( correctly told me that the burglar can
appear in the day as well as the night. He'll only appear if all your sims are
asleep or at work, but that can be day or night. That makes home security all
the more important.

|The Tragic Clown|

Props to Trans ( for reminding me about this one.

Some people in the world mean well, but they never manage to do things right.
So is the same as the Tragic Clown, an NPC that just can't do his goals in

To start this disaster, the first thing you need is the Tragic Clown Painting,
found in Buy Mode under the Dectorative sort. Place it anywhere in the house,
and have a sim look at it. Then, if that sim gets depressed (a mood of no
better than +/-0), a pop-up box will appear and inform you of the Tragic
Clown's arrival.

Now, the Tragic Clown is out of your control. He'll wander around the house and
try to cheer up your sims, but all he'll end up doing is cutting the Social
meter even more than it already is. Your sims can interact with him, including
by slapping him in the face, but he won't run away.

There are only two ways to kick the clown to the street. The first and free way
to do so is to become happy despite him. All you have to do is go about your
life and recover your mood to at least +2 or so, then ask him to leave. He'll
see that his job is done, and he'll go quietly.

The other way to get rid of him is quick, but it will cost you §500. Once the
clown is in the house, grab a sim and click a phone. Under Services will be a
new option called Clown Catchers. Choose that, and you'll be asked if you want
to pay the fee to rid yourself of the clown. Should you agree, a man in a black
suit doing the Tommy Lee Jones thing will enter your house and find the clown.
Then he'll whip out his Clown Gun and start blasting away. It may take a few
shots, but the Tragic Clown will get captured, and you'll be charged the §500.
Then the MiB will shoot and capture the Tragic Clown Painting, and then depart.

To cause this to happen, just make sure your sims get depressed. Don't let them
talk to anyone, starve them, prevent them from going to the bathroom, then keep
them from taking a shower after they pee themselves. You should have no problem
setting this one up. To prevent it, simply don't buy a Tragic Clown Painting.


Props to LightningStryke ( for reminding me about this
one, and even further props to giving me details about it.

Your sims have human--well, simulated human--bodies. As advanced as flesh and
bone are, they just cannot cope with disease.

If your sims' meters are too low for an extended period of time, the sim may
catch a disease. When he does, he'll start hacking and coughing and flipping
out. This can lead to death if it's not treated. To heal him, you need to make
sure he's got plenty of bed rest, keep those hunger and hygiene meters up, and
keep him away from work. There's also a one-shot cure-all that can only be made
from a certain item in Livin' Large. Here's a hint: it deals with chemicals.

I've been told that the name of the disease is Guinea Pig Plague, and it's
started by being bitten by an unhappy guinea pig. So, to trigger it, get a
guinea pig, don't feed it, and keep playing with it. Eventually it'll get
pissed and bite your sim, causing the plague to start. Now, it can SPREAD to
other sims from sick sims, but without the guinea pig, it won't start. So, to
prevent the disease, just don't buy a guinea pig.

Ali Ateya Neama ( adds that it helps to have your sick sims
drink plenty of hot liquids like coffee, and to keep the guinea pig's cage as
clean as possible to avoid further illness.

Chili ( says that there is another cure. If you buy
the painting called "The Forgotten Guinea Pig" and hang it up somewhere in the
house, IT PREVENTS THE DISEASE ENTIRELY. So, if you're paranoid about the
disease but still want the stupid thing, then buy the painting with it. Just
try not to throw up when you read the cheesy poem. ^_^

|Military School|

If a kid constantly skips school, he'll be sent to a military school. In
practice, this removes him from the family PERMANENTLY. There is absolutely no
way to get him back, unless you want to reload your game.

You can easily prevent this by sending the kid to school daily. You can easily
cause it by keeping the kid home.

|Social Services|

If a baby is cared for correctly, you'll never have any problems. If the baby
is neglected however, a worker from social services may appear and take the
baby away. This could be good or bad, depending on your feelings of kids.

|Move Outs|

If two sims who are under the same roof absolutely hate each other, the "Fight"
interaction may appear. After enough fights, the loser will say that he or she
won't stand for anymore. He or she will then pack his or her bags and leave the

In practice, this is the adult version of military school. The sim who leaves
is gone permanently with no possible way to get it back. You can cause it by
simply doing as many negative actions as possible, and you can prevent by doing
as many positive actions as possible.


Maybe I'm just tired, but that word doesn't look like it's spelled right.

So the ultimate sign of a slob is having several dozen of these little buggers
(get it? HA HA HA HA!) scurrying around the house eating all the pizza crumbs
you dropped and were too lazy to pick up. No, I take that back: the ultimate
sign is not doing anything about it.

Should you have a dirty house, you'll probably see cockroaches and flies
running around the house. If your sims are on free will, they may freak out
about the roaches. They won't interact with flies, be they in free will or not.

To get rid of the roaches, you can spray them. A maid and Servo will do it too
as their normal routine. However, doing so will only cure the symptoms, not the
disease. To fix your house, make sure it's clean. Wash those dishes, clean up
those pee puddles, throw away that ash of your burned down Christmas tree,
whatever. Of course, you could do nothing. Flies cannot be sprayed, but they
will just poof away when the house gets clean.

Roaches and flies will seriously chop the Room ratings, which of course puts
sims in a bad mood. Picture this:

PYRO: "Oh Stephanie, I love you, I love you!" *kiss kiss*
STEPH: "Oh Pyro, I love you too, and your FAQs rock!" *kiss kiss*
PYRO: "Oh Stephanie..."
STEPH: "Ooo, Pyro, you're sliding your hand up my leg! You know I like that!"
PYRO: "Uh... I'm not doing that."
STEPH: "Then... then what's crawling up my leg?"

...Not a pretty sight. And stop laughing, it's never happened to me in real
life. Really. It hasn't. Honest.

To prevent the damn things, just try to keep a clean house. Washing dishes the
moment your sims are done eating is definitely the big step. To cause it, just
be a slob, then don't kill them off once they appear.

Oh, and props to Rodrigo Argenta ( for talking me into
putting this one in my FAQ.

|14a. DEATH|

Whenever a sim dies, its corpse will be on the ground for all to see (except in
the case of drowning). Also, the grim reaper will appear on your front lawn and
head to the deceased.

If another family member wants to, it can plead with Death to spare the dead's
life. Several things can happen here...

If Death is in a bad mood, it'll just blow you off and take the corpse.

If Death is in a good mood, your sim plays a game of rock, paper, scissors with
Death. On a win, the dead sim is rezzed for a second chance at life.

If the sim loses the game, Death will either take the corpse, or he'll be nice
and rez the body, but turn it into a zombie. The zombie thing is a mixed
blessing. The sim may be alive, but it has a nasty green skin tone and loses
ALL personality points. It's normal otherwise, though, so maybe it's not so

There's no way to save someone who drowned. He should've gotten out of the pool
before Pyro started the fight!

Once the corpse is taken, the body changes to an urn or a tombstone (depending
on whether it's inside or outside the house). You can move this around in Buy
Mode, and can put it in the house or make a little graveyard. Either way, sims
can interact with the object, though the only option, "Mourn," only cuts down
the Social meter. Ah well, it's realistic.

If there is an urn or gravestone on the property, the ghost of the dead may
wander around the house scaring everybody at night. This really sucks since
ghosts can wake up sims that are asleep, and there's no way to get rid of the

Well, there IS a way, but it's awfully cruel. You can actually sell the urn or
tombstone through Buy Mode for §5. I guess you really can put a price tag on


All right, this is a rather new section of mine where I describe miscellaneous
events in the world of SimCity. I hesitated to do this because I don't want to
ruin the game for anyone, but I've had a lot of questions on the little things
of sim life, so I decided to put really common ones here. This will also serve
to kill rumors about things such as cars and... and other stuff like that.


One of the most frequently asked questions is, how do you get your sims to
actually own cars? You're sick of that carpool, right? The limo is cool, but
you need a ride of your own.

Hate to tell you this, but there is no possible way (read that: NO POSSIBLE
WAY) to actually own a car that you can drive. There are a few websites out
there that allow you to download cars as objects, but they're only decoration.
You can view them, and some you can clean, but you can't drive them.

|Sim Teens?|

Another really frequent question is how long it takes sim kids to grow up into
teens, and then adults.

I'm going to break your heart again. It doesn't happen. Sim kids are eternally
sim kids. Will Wright was once asked why, and he replied that if he showed kids
growing up, it would mean that you could put some sort of scale of real time to
the game, and The Sims is supposed to be eternal. You don't want to shatter the
illusion of the game by adding a time limit, and if kids and grow, then adult
sims should in theory age and die too. That just isn't good entertainment.

There is a site out there that has hacked out a patch that actually fudges the
game's rules, and it allows your sim kids to become sim teens. This is a bad
thing. The patch is highly unstable and very well may corrupt your game
permanently. Also, the skins of the sim teens look horrible, so you'll have to
put up with f'ugly, erratic sim teens. It's not worth it.

Once again... Cars you can drive and sim teens DO NOT exist.

|The Old Prude|

When you're on a date Downtown, all the standard interactions are still there,
including the romantic ones. Now, here's where the game can get funny. There is
typically a sim running around downtown. She wears gray and is an old crotchity
woman. She can do whatever standard sims do, but you cannot interact with her.
Her name is Miss Crumplebottom, although that could vary. On many sites and
message boards, she's referred to as the Old Prude.

Now, there's been bickering about whether she was in the game. Some said that
she was there all the time. Some said that she was there only 1/40 times
(2.5%). Some said that she was never there. Some said she'd only be there if
you downloaded a particular patch from a particular site.

Here's my take: I don't recall ever seeing her when I initially installed Hot
Date, but after I downloaded the v2.0 patch from in
February 2002, I saw her all the time. Will she appear when you play? I have no
idea. Try it and see.

Anyway, what Miss Crumplebottom does is yell at your sims if they do a PDA
(Public Display of Affection). Please note that this has absolutely no bearing
on anything; a message box will pop up with her repremanding you, but that's
it. For such a small (albeit funny) thing, people made a big deal about it.

GamePErson ( sends this...


If you look at one of the hanging chandeliers, it mentions the name
Crumplebottom in the description and title. Further reading of the description
tells how Mr. Crumplebottom was a puppeteer who was killed by a falling
chandelier(the one in buy mode is a replica of Mr. Crumplebottom's killer).

This may have something to do with why she yells at you for PDA's. Now if only
that chandelier would fall on her too...


|Alien Abductions|

Dawn ( convinced me to write this entire section, and in doing
so she gave me details on the alien abduction. Now, even though I know about
it, I don't want her e-mail going to waste, so here's what she says about it...


Your Sim is looking through the telescope at night (only happens at night) and
he suddenly shudders, crouches and tries to shield himself from something above
with his hands and suddenly he goes limp and is lifted into the air in a
heavenly spinning motion. He remains gone for 2-3 Sim days and then returns
with his personality changed.


Superkyle1991 ( adds that upon an alien abduction, a sim's
interest points will massively increase to Aliens afterwards (kids only).

|Claire the Bear|

Claire (she might be called other names in other countries) is a giant grizzly
bear. She means no harm (really), but she has this really unhealthy habit: she
likes eating trash.

Or maybe she's just treasure hunting for old copies of Streets of SimCity
(wasn't that the WORST Maxis game ever?), but whatever her reason, she randomly
appears at night and roots through your sims' trash cans. This normally
wouldn't be an issue, but your sims WAKE UP because of it. Well, at least the
adults do; sim kids can sleep through anything.

I don't know why she appears or if she can be prevented, but she doesn't pop up
too often. Just try to send your sims back to sleep if you can.

Tawnee ( sends this [confirmed by Lunar34


When you see Claire the Bear coming to your house, put the wooden bear statue
outside of your house and she'll wave at it. Put the bear skin rug out (I only
know that the grizzly bear one workd, haven't tried the polar bear rug) and
she'll start crying.


|The Chemistry Set|

If you have Livin' Large, you can buy a chemistry set. In addition to improving
the Logic skill, you can create all sorts of liquids for your sims.

The Logic skill is completely related to the potion's worth. If you have low
logic, then the chance of creating a bad potion is much higher. Once you make
any potion, you HAVE to have someone drink it to free up the chem set again. If
you don't want to drink it, the only way to get rid of it is to sell the whole
chem set.

By the way, if you work on the chem set too much, a cop may pop over sometime
and fine you §500 for sending nasty chemicals into the air. Bah.

ORANGE - Orange potions turn the drinker invisible to other sims, and
transparent to you. The sim can still engage in solo activities, and it can
give social interactions, but it cannot receive interactions. Also, while the
sim is invisible, it can spy on other sims going to the bathroom or taking a
shower without repercussion. This wears off after several game hours.

YELLOW - Yellow potions will reverse the personality of the drinker. This can
be good or bad, depending on your needs. In fact, it's a common tactic to start
a sim with no personality, then make and drink a yellow potion to get a perfect
personality. Of course, if your sim is already the way you want it, then this
potion is terrible. This one is permanent as well.

LIGHT GREEN - This nasty stuff will cut ALL SEVEN MOOD METERS (not the Room
meter) to very low levels of the drinker. Bad, very bad. If you happen to drink
it, start by immediately going to the bathroom and going to sleep. When you
wake, eat, then go to the bathroom again, and take a shower. That will fix
five. Watch TV to fix fun, bringing the number to six. Just try to get social
ASAP to fix that last one.

DARK GREEN - The drinker will spawn an evil clone. The clone is outside of your
control and may do things you don't want it to do, but any relationship change
that the clone may have caused will affect the original.

PURPLE - Drink this, and your sim will turn into a monster faster than you can
say "Jekyl and Hyde." The problem here is two-fold. First, the sim goes out of
your control. That's bad enough, but it also breaks anything it touches. TVs
will explode, toilets will clog, showers will shatter, ovens will catch fire,
et cetera. It wears off after a few game hours, but until then, you'll have to
deal with it.

RED - Red potions will make one random sim in the neighborhood fall in love
with the drinker. That means 100/100 and a red heart in the relationship meter.
This can be extremely good, as it's a quick and free friend. Of course, if your
sim's lover is in the same room, you'll have a problem. See, the moment you
drink it, the sim that becomes your soul mate will pop up in the same room and
kiss the drinker. Just make sure you drink it in the room alone, and you'll be

WHITE - This potion will cure the Guinea Pig Plague. Otherwise, I don't think
it does anything.

BLUE - The only really good potion of the group. When this is drunk, the sim
will max out in three or four random moods. If you logic is a perfect 10,
you'll always make blue potions.

Superkyle1991 ( adds:


another way to get rid of the potions are to invite a freind over he'll drink
the poiton if he can't find any food. (He will leave if it is light green)


Jason Algarme ( talks about the monster potion:


I've figured out that the monster has a behavior pattern.  First, he'll find
and paint on every accessible art easel in the lot.  Then, he'll go use a
certain number of things (breaking them in the process too).  And afterwards,
he changes back.  If he finds himself trapped after painting every reachable
art easel, he'll automatically change back.

No doubt, this means that the duration of a Sim's being a monster is not
time-based but action-based. And as further proof: At one time, I had the
monster paint on only a few easels (in a trapped "room" of easels, of course). 
After 3 or 4 hours, all the paintings are done and the monster changes back,
unable to reach any breakable things.  On another time, I had him paint on a
large easel "room" with many easels to paint on.  It took about 24 hours for
all the paintings to finish; and afterwards, he changed back.  Not time-based
at all, I think.


Jason Algarme also adds this...


It turns out that a monster has a minimum time duration of around 2 hours
(starting from the time the potion is drunk) before he's able to change back. 
I trapped the monster by completely surrounding him with easels.  After he
finished painting and magically broke the TV again (which didn't took long), he
complained for a while before changing back.  So when a monster has nothing to
do (probably because he's trapped or something) and his minimum time isn't up
yet, he'll just complain.

Apart from the art easel, the monster also has another item at the top of his
list: garden gnomes.  If there are any available, the first thing he'll do is
kick one.  Strangely enough, this causes all the gnomes to explode (and the TV
to magically break).  I can still lure him into an easel "room" though, so
perhaps the gnome and easel share the monster's top priority spot.

I don't know why the TV keeps breaking even though the monster's nowhere near
it.  Is it just me?  Is it my game?  A bug?  An evil joke by the game creator,


|The Genie|

Another nifty item you get with Livin' Large is the lamp and genie. By cleaning
the lamp once per day, you can summon the genie to grant you a wish.

Well, sort of. He'll offer you a choice between two things, and you pick one.
After that, the game flips a coin to decide whether the spell went right or
wrong. If it goes right, you'll have some nice stuff. If it goes wrong, well,
you're the one who took the risk.

MONEY - If the spell goes right, a pot of gold will be created. Have your sim
touch it to increase your bank account, or just sell it in Buy Mode. If the
spell goes wrong, a ton of bills will be created, and they're ALL red. Pay them
now, or get your stuff repoed.

LOVE - The genie will ask if you want the spell cast on a man or woman. Then,
if it goes right, a random sim from within the circle of friends you already
know will get 100/100 and a red heart, like the love potion from the chem set.
However, if the spell goes wrong, that random sim will get -100/-100 and
absolutely despise you.

FRIENDS - This is, in effect, a weaker version of the love choice. A random sim
from the target's known list will either become an automatic friend (but will
not fall in love), or it will be really ticked off.

FAMILY - This will either increase or decrease your relationship with one sim
from among the family. Yawn.

FUN - If this goes well, the genie will give you a random object with a high
fun rating, like the plasma TV. Although you'll start having to pay for it with
the bills, it came to you for free, which is nice. If this spell goes wrong,
the most expensive fun object in your house catches fire.

WORK - The sim will either gain one skill point in three random skills each, or
it will lose one skill point in ALL six skills.

EARTH - All plants that are dead will live again if this goes right, but all
living plants will die if it goes wrong.

WATER - You'll either get a free fountain or a huge flood.

FIRE - All family members will max out their comfort and social moods if this
works, but if it doesn't, you better go call the SimCity Fire Department

AIR - You'll be rewarded with a half-dozen pink flamingos if this goes well. If
it doesn't, your house will be overrun with cockroaches.

By the way, if you have multiple lamps in the house, you can rub EACH ONE once
per day.

|The Crystal Ball|

This is the only item aside from the yellow potion that can permanently change
a sim's personality. Once per day, any sim can gaze into it, and it will reply
with a little poem that's not-so-subtle. If you do what it tells you, you'll
gain a point in a similar trait.

NEAT - Keep a clean house and wash dishes the moment you use them. Wipe up
puddles on the floor, and kill off any bugs that may be in the house. If those
room scores are high, you'll gain a point of your Neat trait.

OUTGOING - Just be nice to people. If the sim who is doing the test has a
lover, just get romantic to take care of it.

ACTIVE - Do things that tax the body, like swimming, working out, or playing

PLAYFUL - Take the day off work and relax all day. Don't do any studying. Try
to do things like play chess that don't end once the meter maxxes out. Keep the
fun meter high to gain a point here.

NICE - Like outgoing, just be nice to people to gain here.

|Getting a Visit from Santa|

Firstly, I'd like to thank Glynnys Chua ( for putting me in
the direction to do this.

All right, think back to all the things you know about Santa. He comes in the
through the fireplace, snarfs down a plate of cookies, drops off some loot,
then tails it out of there. Of course, he only works on Christmas.

Knowing all that, we can get items related to everything through Buy Mode and
Build Mode, but it's going to take a lot of initial capital. For starters, you
need a fireplace, which can cost you over §3000, although even the cheapest
will work. Place your fireplace in a large room, away from bedrooms.

Next, buy an endtable of any flavor and put it near the fireplace. Because you
don't need to light the fireplace at all, you don't have to worry about setting
fire to anything. Finally, buy a Christmas tree (found under the Decorative
sort) and place it near the fireplace as well.

Make sure all your sims are ready to sleep by about 11PM (or anytime before).
Once you've issued the command to tell your last sim to go to bed, buy a plate
of Granny's Holiday Cookies (found under the Miscellaneous sort) and place it
on the endtable near the fireplace. Finally, get all your sims asleep.

At midnight, if the cookies are in place near the tree and fireplace, Santa
will appear. He'll eat up the cookies, then drop off one empty box per sim in
your family. The boxes have an interaction called "Open Gift," and it will
boost the Fun meter, although that's all the boxes do. However, Santa will also
drop off one random object as a family gift. Finally, Santa will leave.

Getting Santa to appear takes more than buying the items, however, and
unfortunately, it's COMPLETELY random. Once you buy all the stuff, you'll have
to cross your fingers and hope to Rudolph that Jolly Old Saint Nick will

Robert "pyramus" Matthews ( sends an addition...


One more thing that I discovered: Servo hates Christmas! He really hates it.
You can set up the Christmas tree and the fireplace and the end table with the
cookies and expect Santa to come, but Servo will try to thwart his arrival, for
some reason. The first time I tried to get Santa to come, I sent everyone to
bed early and set out the cookies. Servo threw them away as if they were a
dirty plate. I set out another plateful, and Servo got that one, too. I put out
a third plateful, and by this time it was midnight, and Santa arrived just as
Servo grabbed the third batch of cookies for disposal. Santa looked at the end
table, shrugged, thought about cookies, and then, generous soul, left presents
for everyone anyway.


|The Evil Clone Glitch|

Bianca "Kaori" Armbrister ( submitted this, and it
was confirmed by Superkyle1991 (


I don't know if this sort of glitch happens a lot or to anybody else but the
second time my Sim used the chemistry lab it got the green "Evil Clone" potion;
that's when things got really weird. Directly after drinking the potion, the
clone appeared and then immediately left the house, assumedly never to be heard
from again. Oh how wrong I was...

One Sim day later, I had my Sim call a friend (Dustin) over, and who should he
bring along but the evil clone!! The game crashed after the origional and the
clone met each other but that has to be the oddest thing that I've ever seen.


Jason Algarme ( also confirmed it and added this:


Every time I drink a dark-green potion, the resulting clone would leave
because, according to his thought bubble, his Social is extremely low.  Well
then, why doesn't he just stick around and talk to somebody?  Argh, I don't
want him to leave!  If he does, I won't be able to invite anyone over because
the clone might come along and make the game crash.

It's just a guess, but maybe an evil clone starts out with a low Social which
would make him interact with anyone immediately.  But it seems it's too low and
he just leaves instead.  Funny, it's never happened before.  A bug that an
expansion has caused, perhaps?



Woo hoo! The fun stuff!

Off the bat, a disclaimer: I make absolutely no guarentees that any of these
strategies will work. They're simply built by the experiences and opinions of
the strategies' authors. If you just plainly suck at The Sims, strategies may
not help you at all. You are perfectly free to alter the strategies in any way
you need to compliment your playing style, and you can even resubmit them here.
Just remember that all the strategies worked for SOMEONE, so don't slam an
author simply because it didn't work exactly the way you wanted it to.

Okay, enough of that...

|16a. PyroFalkon's Alpha Strategy|

This is PyroFalkon's Official Super-Duper Happy Fantastic Strategy For The Sims
(note: that's copyrighted). This is the exact way I play my primary family, the
Falkons. I'll make notes here and there about variables, but other than that
this is a very solid strategy.

This is by no means the only way to play, and it's by no means perfect, but
it's very solid. If you're new to the series, you may want to try it out (it's
compatible with all The Sims games, not just Vacation). Pieces of it will be in
other sections here, so you don't have to read every word of my alpha strategy.

Firstly, I did not choose to create exactly three sims by rolling dice or
throwing darts. I carefully studied strategies, did a bit of trial and error,
and came up with the number.

Remember that every sim has a maintenance cost, in simoleons, time, and other
sims' time. For example, if you have two bathrooms and three people, SOMEONE is
out of luck if their bladder gets full. On the other hand, more sims equal more
money... but can they make enough in the early days to compensate their cost?
That's the big factor that you must decide.

I calculated using my play style and found that three sims (MAYBE four if I buy
lot 6 or 9, the cheap lots) strikes the perfect balance. Read the rest of the
strategy, then decide for yourself whether three is a good choice.

I also did not choose their personality randomly, nor who they're "related" to.
Basically, I need one couple and one extra. The couple is required so they can
share a bed. However, getting a third bed is not too hard, so it's easily
possible to have three unrelated sims.

When I make sims, the number one rule is "No kids." At the game's start, you
need money, and kids simply don't make it. I make three adults, with the names
Pyro, Stephanie (sometimes if I'm lazy I'll call her Steph), and Pete. Pyro and
Stephanie are the couple (married), and Pete is the extra (Pyro's brother).
Again, you can call them whatever you want since relationships are not "set" in
the game.

Anyway, one sim must have 10 Active and at least 6 Outgoing. I chose Pete for
that one. The other two sims are variable, but for them I balanced the 25
points between Active, Playful, and Nice.

I now must buy a lot. Lot 2 is out of my price range because I won't be able to
afford the necessities of life. However, I want a big house and I'm not willing
to move my family out of one lot into another (I'm stubborn like that), so I
need a plot of land that gives room for later expansion. I choose lot 1,
costing me §10,500 (§1000 less than lot 2) and leaving me with §9500.

With that money, I immediately go into Buy Mode and buy the cheapest computer,
desk, and chair I can. Then I have each of the three sims accept whichever job
has the highest salary. After that, I go back into Buy Mode and sell the items,
getting all my money back because less than a day passed since I bought them.

I go into Build Mode and make the walls for two bedrooms, two bathrooms, a
small living room, and a kitchen-dining room combo. The living room and
bedrooms are 5x5; the bathrooms are 4x4 and attached to the bedrooms; and the
kitchen is 6x4. I put the open-frame door connecting all the rooms, except that
the bathroom has the basic walnut door. I put a nicer door on an exterior wall
for the front door, confirm my roof, then get into Buy Mode.

I funish the master bedroom (the one Pyro and Steph sleep in) with the cheapest
double bed, cheapest end table, and an alarm clock. I furnish the other bedroom
the exact same way, except I use the cheapest single bed.

Then I buy the cheapest couch and the §500 TV for the living room. Then I buy
the cheapest fridge, two of the cheapest counters, the food processor, and the
cheapest oven for the kitchen. I arrange them like this (this was up in the FAQ
earlier, but I'm repeating it for emphasis)...

+--------+ +-----------+ +------+ +---------+
|        | |  COUNTER  | |      | |  EMPTY  |
| FRIDGE | |   WITH    | | OVEN | | COUNTER |
|        | | PROCESSOR | |      | |         |
+--------+ +-----------+ +------+ +---------+

Then I buy the cheapest table that takes up one tile, and three of the cheapest
dining chairs. I put the table on the side of empty counter opposite the oven,
and put the three chairs around it.

I then buy the wall phone and put it in the living room somewhere, and the
cheapest bookcase right next to the couch. Then I buy a burglar alarm on an
exterior wall beside the front door.

The bathrooms both get the cheapest toilet and the cheapest shower. I put in
sinks only if I can also afford a dishwasher (which I normally can).

Because I need to save money for food, the house will have to be without
carpet, windows, wallpaper, and lights. Thems the breaks, as they say. Due to
this, the sims will have terrible room ratings, but it's for their own good.

All money I get from the job goes to windows, then carpet, then interior
wallpaper, then exterior wallpaper, always in that order. See, windows will
greatly boost the room ratings due to the light, although it only makes a
difference during the day. Carpets and interior wallpaper finish getting those
room scores up. Exterior wallpaper makes the house presentable. I definitely
can't afford it all in one day, I'm just planning.

I then have all the sims check the paper to see if the job they can get pays
higher than what they currently have. I'm aiming for the military, since it has
the highest starting pay and no friend requirements until level 6.

While Pyro and Stephanie bond (I need them to sleep together that night, after
all), Pete studies cooking. Make absolute sure that the sim you set to be
outgoing is the one doing the studying. This will have major impact soon.

Once Pete gets one point of cooking, I save the game then tell him to serve a
meal while the other two go to the bathroom and take showers. If Pete starts a
fire, I reload the game.

Once the meal is served, all three eat. Pyro and Steph bond as much as I let
them dare before I consider them staying up too late (8 hours before the alarm
clock rings, or 10 hours before the carpool arrives), then I send them to bed.
Pete calls and hires a maid, then goes to the bathroom, takes a shower, and
goes to bed.

Every day, I check the paper if my sims aren't in the military career track. If
they are, I don't worry about anything.

When a sim gets promoted, all money goes into getting an object that improves
the skills needed to get promoted again. The beauty of all the sims having the
same job is that I don't have to buy multiple items to pull it off. I want all
three to work on their skills, but Pyro's relationship to Stephanie is the

Once the house has all of its carpet, windows, and wallpaper, I switch Pyro's
and Stephanie's jobs to what they were intended to be. I always send Pyro to
the Hacker career track and usually Stephanie to the Pro Athlete track, but
that doesn't matter. What DOES matter is Pete remains in the military career

This move will cut your income, but that little problem won't last long.

If I have the money to spend, I put a second toilet and second shower (both the
cheapest variety) in the bathroom attached to the master bedroom. It's at this
moment I get serious.

Everyone works in their jobs until Pyro OR Stephanie require friends to be
promoted. At that moment, I make Pete quit his job by keeping him home. This is
where the plot thickens.

If the Falkons are the first family in the neighborhood, here I save and stop
playing with them. I make a few more families, move them in, give them phones,
then switch back to the Falkons.

Pete stays home all day and studies cooking. He may refuse to study if his
Social meter is shot to hell (which it probably is), and if that's the case, he
just watches TV and relaxes. Once Pyro and Steph get home, I start the main

Pyro and Steph get to sleep on time, but bond first. While they do so, Pete
goes to the bathroom, takes a shower, and then goes to bed.

Let me interject here with a quick lesson on how sims sleep. Once they're
asleep, they will sleep until their energy tops out. Now, if it's nighttime and
you haven't given them any commands, they will STAY ASLEEP, and they'll wake up
at 6 AM (when the sun rises). If you give them a command, then they'll wake the
moment their energy hits 100. Of course, you can always manually wake them up.

Okay, here I let Pete sleep until 6 AM, when his body wakes him up. That's
PROBABLY when the other two wake up also, but depending on their job, maybe
not. However, as long as they wake up AFTER Pete, the strategy holds.

Pete immediately serves a meal while Pyro and Stephanie BOTH go to the same
bathroom to relieve themselves and take showers. They should finish JUST AS
Pete gets done cooking (maybe not if one is very active or very inactive). All
three eat, and I monitor their table talk so no one starts hating the topic.

After breakfast, Pete goes to the bathroom, takes a shower, and watches TV. If
the others do not take the same carpool, whoever goes last spends a bit of time
improving their lowest meter, which is usually the Fun meter. If the others DO
take the same carpool, then they go to work together.

By the time Pete's done watching TV, his Energy, Hunger, Bladder, Hygiene, Fun,
Comfort, and Room meters are all quite high. The only bad one is the Social
meter, but that will be fixed.

If Pete is in a good enough mood to study, he studies cooking until another sim
knocks on the door. He greets the stranger with a handshake, then I order him
to grab another plate of food no matter what his hunger rating is.

I'm going to interject again to give some advice. House guests always perform
the same actions in the same order: eat, bathroom, TV. They may delay a bit
before any of those, but they will get there. Remember that.

The house guest (we'll call him Sixam, another one that I make a lot) goes for
the food since flies haven't been attracted to it yet. At the same time, Pete
is doing the same. As they eat, they talk, boosting Pete's Social meter as well
as improving their relationship. Sixam will head to a bathroom, and I delay
long enough to figure out which one he's going to. I send Pete into the other
one. Then, both will go watch TV, further boosting the meters.

Now, Pete may get bored and get up from the couch. If that happens, I tell him
to study cooking until Sixam gets up from TV too. Once they're both done with
the idiot box, I tell Pete to talk and give friendly hugs to Sixam. With any
luck, this boosts the Relationship meter over 50, making Sixam a family friend.
I keep talking and hugging; eventually, Sixam will get bored or hungry and
leave since I don't allow him to watch TV or eat.

Pyro and Stephanie return home with their pay checks. I buy items that boost
their skills if I need to, or I start upgrading furniture if they don't. I
prioritize the fridge, oven, chairs, couch, and showers in that order when I
upgrade. Pyro and Stephanie work on their skills if they need to or bond if
they don't. When the time limit hits, I send them to bed. Meanwhile, Pete
studies cooking if he's in the mood and it's early. Otherwise, he goes to the
bathroom, takes a shower, and goes to bed.

This cycle repeats itself eternally. Pete is the chef who prepares Pyro's and
Steph's meals as they get ready for work, and he makes friends to assist the
two in getting promoted. Pyro and Stephanie are low maintenance since they're
out of the house for a good part of the day, and they just work their hardest
to get their paychecks. Once Pete becomes friends with someone, I take them
"out of rotation"... in other words, I don't talk to them anymore. If I have a
choice, I always talk to the sim who has the lower relationship value.

Eventually, Sixam will no longer be a friend since he's been neglected so long.
The game gives a pop-up warning, so I don't miss it. I then begin with Sixam
again, boosting the relationships with everyone in the same order as I met
them. This way, Pete himself can single-handedly maintain up to about 15
relationships, enough to get promoted to the top level in all the career tracks
except politics and paranormal.

As I get money, I upgrade the beds, the showers, and everything else. Lamps are
the last priority.

Then I extend the house however I see fit, perhaps making a party room, and
build my little empire from there. When Pyro and Steph are forced out of their
job, I roll with the punches and try to promote them up THAT ladder.

Once I'm finished, my bills can exceed §1500, but I make more than that in one
day with the combined incomes of Pyro and Steph. Even if I'm a bit short on
cash, I can take Pete away from making friends for a day to make gnomes.

The only change I make in this pattern is that I eventually fire the maid and
replace her with a Servo, although that's not a very high priority.

The Falkons' house becomes THE party house on the block, and in fact they do
hold frequent parties. Drew Carey practically lives there.

Once I decide to have a kid, things change a bit. When the baby comes, it
becomes Pete's job (and only job) to care for it. He no longer cooks or makes
friends, he focuses all his attention on the baby. Once the baby becomes a
child, Pete resumes what he normally does.

Anyway, after I'm satisfied, I simply switch to another family and start anew.

rcoffelt sends a few comments on my alpha strategy...


I see our playing style is similar in some respects, so I must be doing
something right, LOL.  Although I have to say I disagree on a few things that
you wrote.  For example, when I put my Sims in their first house, if at all
possible I do buy them a few very comfy items instead of the cheapest
available.  When I was first playing I tried starting out with the cheapest
stuff and found the comfort value on those items weren't enough to get my Sims
into a decent enough mood to even get a promotion.  So now, instead of trying
to put in two bathrooms right off the bat, I stick in one bath with one of the
comfy self-flushing toilets (no headaches about plugged toilets, etc., etc. and
it brings up comfort levels at the same time) and the cheapest shower I can
find.  I also add a chess table right off the bat, with two comfy chairs (no
lower than 5).  In order to do this, generally speaking my Sims start out with
two rooms--no bedroom, just an all-in-one kitchen/living room/bedroom, and it
usually has a cheap custom-made floor, and sometimes cheap custom-made
wallpaper (but not always).


|16b. Relationship Strategies|

|A Prison Just Down the Street|

There are probably quite a few gamers out there who don't want to deal with 10
families. It really is a hassle sometimes to keep everyone happy while not
being confused about who loves and hates who. Those gamers play with one or two
families max. The problem is that friends are a very important part of The
Sims, and for some jobs, the required number is quite steep. It's impossible to
get friends if you don't make additional families (although the Townies in the
downtown area of Hot Date relieve that a little), and some don't want to take
the trouble.

If you play like that, there's an easy way to get a bunch of friends with
little muss or fuss. Simply create a family with 8 sims and set each to 10
Outgoing and 10 Nice. After that, move them into any open lot that you don't
really care about. Give them a wall or desk and a phone. You never have to play
that family again, since your primary family will do all the work of getting

If you want to be a bit evil, you could give this throw-away family a house,
but make it extremely simplistic. Whenever I use this technique, I make a huge
house with 8 little cells and have barred doors and windows, making the place
look like a prison. Of course, the only thing that's required is a phone, but
this makes it look a bit more neat in the neighborhood screen.

|Getting to 100 in One Day|

Before Hot Date, your sims could go from zero to 100 in the relationship meter
in one day easily. If you wanted to bribe someone for their love, all you had
to do was use the Give Gift action repeatedly. Another strategy was to
alternate Hug and Kiss until you hit that triple digit.

However, I found out through a bit of testing that this no longer works at all.
If you repeat any command more than once, it may be rejected for no other
reason than repetition.

This changed my strategy somewhat since I depended on "Kiss, Hug, repeat 4
times" to get by. Now, you need to throw in variety, but it's still not too

House guests always do things in the same order: they look for a meal, and then
go to the bathroom after they eat, then they seek to do something fun (usually
they watch TV).

Since you know that, you can prepare when you expect a guest. If you know
someone's coming over (or you know you're going to invite someone), make a meal
first. When they come over, they'll immediately be able to eat, and you can eat
with them to pull the meter up. Your guest will go to the bathroom (obviously
they should be left alone for that), then head to your couch to watch TV. Watch
TV with them, and you'll pull that relationship meter up higher.

After that, you need to Hug, Flirt, and Compliment. Maybe you can get away with
repeating the three in the same order, but you definitely can't repeat twice.
Kiss should be available by then, so you can throw a few kisses your target's
way. Giving a gift, while no longer a very reliable way to boost the
relationship meter, still throws variety into the mix and helps avoid

Don't neglect Talk. Seldom will it fail, and it will generally boost both sims'
relationship meters by 9 to 15 points.

By the way, it's MUCH harder to maintain 100 as it was in earlier games. Thanks
to the faster decay, you may not be able to get more than 60 (sometimes less)
in one day no matter how hard you try. Just remember that Rome wasn't built in
a day, and neither are close friendships.

|Everyone Has Enemies|

It's doubtful that one sim can be friends with every other sim in the
neighborhood. Maybe it's bad luck, maybe it's a conflict of the astrological
signs, but either way, some sims won't be considered a friend until they hit
90. That's a large time-waster for your sims, since your 10-point cushion will
decay extremely fast.

If one particular sim is having issues with your version of Pete in my alpha
strategy, it may be best to give up and just move onto someone else. Unless
every single other sim has been friended to Pete, he'll still have other
options. Just make sure to make a note somewhere not to bother trying to bond
with that sim.


Many people have e-mailed me, telling me that they are having trouble getting
another sim to accept their proposal. I've got a few tips compiled here, and if
you can think of anything else, fire them my way.

1. Before hand, go Downtown and buy a Diamond Ring (it costs §1000).

2. Go home, and start the next steps as close to 6AM (but not before) as you
can the next morning.

3. Cook a group meal.

4. Invite the person over.

5. Let the person eat, and eat with them.
   a. Monitor the conversation to make sure bad topics don't come up.

6. Let them go to the bathroom. If you have two, use the other one.

7. They'll want to watch TV if it's on. Make sure your couch is comfy. Watch TV
with them, and monitor the conversation.

8. Depending on your cooking skill and oven, they may want another meal. That's
a bad thing, but not leathal. Just repeat steps 5 and 6.

9. Once they're done eating, watching TV, and relieving themselves, get them
into your best room and try a Passionate kiss. If that fails, you have no
chance of having the proposal accepted.

10. If the kiss is accepted, give the gift of the Diamond Ring.

11. Pop the question.

Now, it SHOULD work. If it fails, try again the next day.

The basic rules you need to know are to keep your moods and the moods of your
target as high as possible before asking the question.

|16c. Other Strategies and Short Tips|

|Be a Slob and Hire a Maid|

In The Sims, just like in life, there just doesn't seem to be enough time in
the world.

I hate wasting time, and I hate my sims wasting time too. That dish may not
wash itself, but getting that last point of Logic to be promoted one more time
is far more important. However, if the sim in question has a high Neat rating,
it will try to wash the dish anyway. Though I can easily cancel the command
manually, there's no reason to have had the command in the first place.

I recommend that all your sims have zero points given to Neat. Room scores will
fall a bit since they won't clean up after themselves, but they won't mind a
mess as much anyway, so it will balance out. A maid can take care of the
majority of the filth, and a Servo robot can take care of it all.

Maids charge §10 per hour. That's ridiculously cheap since she'll
single-handedly raise room scores and make the house presentable while your
sims do something constructive. The only major issue is that she shows up in
the mornings and leaves whenever she's out of stuff to do, and your sims may
make messes at night.

The (expensive) solution to that is to get a Servo. They cost §15000, but they
take the place of repairmen, maids, and gardeners all in one. Plus, they can
work whenever you want them to. I usually order my last sim that's going to bed
to turn it on, and it'll clean the entire house as the sims sleep.

Of course, you have to ask yourself if the §15000 is really WORTH it. Does the
initial cost outweigh the fact that you get more time? That's up to you. I
personally think so.

However, maids are definitely cheaper, so if you do decide you want a Servo,
make sure you have plenty of money and no major expenses before investing in

|Preventing Burglars|

If you want to ensure that burglars can't rob your house, try the following.

Remember that the burglar alarm goes off the moment a burglar comes near it.
However, a cop won't show up instantly, and the thief may have the time to
snatch one expensive item or two.

There is a way you can completely prevent thieves from getting anything, but it
makes the house look a bit weird from the neighborhood screen. I used to do
this, but because I've suddenly been obsessed with the appearance of my
neighborhood, I've stopped. It's up to you.

Anyway, here's the lot...

A=Burglar alarm
E=Entrance point

   |                                          |
   |                                          |
   |                                          |
   |          +------------------+            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          |       HOUSE      |            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          +---------DA-------+            |
   |                                          |
   |                                          |
   |                                          |
E=>|                                          |<=E
   |                                          |
   |                                          |
   | =  =  =  =  =  =  =  =  =  =  =  =  =  = |
   |                                          |
   |                                          |

If you notice, all sims enter your house from only one of two points: the piece
of sidewalk on the edges of the lot. Because of that, you can try this...

   |                                          |
   |                                          |
   |                                          |
   |          +------------------+            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          |       HOUSE      |            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          +---------D--------+            |
   |                                          |
   |                                          |
   | A                                     A  |
E=>|                                          |<=E
   |                                          |
   |                                          |
   | =  =  =  =  =  =  =  =  =  =  =  =  =  = |
   |                                          |
   |                                          |

You make one section of wall as close to those entrance points as you can, then
slap a burglar alarm on them. The INSTANT the crook steps on your property, the
alarm will go off. The cop will even catch him before he gets to the front

Having two single sections of wall looks a bit ugly, but the tradeoff is that
you ensure your items' survival.

You could take a middle-of-the-road approach, balancing beauty with safety...

   |                                          |
   |                                          |
   |                                          |
   |          +------------------+            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          |       HOUSE      |            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          |                  |            |
   |          A---------D--------A            |
   |                                          |
   |                                          |
   |                                          |
E=>|                                          |<=E
   |                                          |
   |                                          |
   | =  =  =  =  =  =  =  =  =  =  =  =  =  = |
   |                                          |
   |                                          |

Placing burglar alarms on the corners of your house gives you an unfair
advantage against the criminal, but he still may have time to get inside and
swipe something, especially if your front wall is narrow.

Of course, it's up to you.

|How to Take Care of Babies|

Babies must be taken care of, or they may get taken away by social services.
They take three days to grow into children, and although that's a relatively
short time, it can wreck havoc on your sims' moods and relationships.

The first thing you need to do is offset a special room as a nursery. It
doesn't have to be a new room, just a room without a phone and with something
to sleep on. A TV would help, too. I prefer using the expensive recliner with
the §500 TV.

Whenever, and I mean EVERY MOMENT, the baby is sleeping, put an adult in that
room and tell him or her to nap. When the baby wakes up screaming, it will wake
up the adult too. Since the adult was only NAPPING, it won't be ticked off for
a half hour as normal.

Anyway, tell the sleep-deprived adult to do the following to the baby: Feed,
Sing, Play, Sing, Feed, Sing, Play, Sing. Remember, the baby goes to sleep if
its mood is satisfied and it's sung to. Now, if it wakes up, obviously it's in
a bad mood, so singing immediately won't do anything.

Babies are simpler than other sims in that they only have two "moods": Hunger
and Fun would be the equivalent. There's no way to overfeed or overplay with
your baby, so alternating Feed and Play are options. However, the adult sim
needs to take care of itself too (especially if it works), and it needs to eat
and shower.

This is why you enter all eight commands at once. When whichever Sing works and
puts the baby to sleep, the other commands will cancel themselves
automatically. The sim can then do what it needs to, then go back and nap in
the special room until the baby wakes up again. Only VERY VERY VERY rarely will
that 4th Sing not work. If it doesn't, just enter all eight commands again.
It's never taken me eight Sing commands to get the baby to sleep.

Note: Don't worry about the Social, Hygiene, or Room meters while the sim is
babysitting. The sim can recover once the baby is a child.

Interactions may not be forced, as Ali Ateya Neama ( says
[confirmed by Chili (]:


Do you know that at  the Sims Vacation, when a family having vacation  whith
their kids at at "42 Old Volcano Way", that when a parent is about to "Slide"
and his kid next to him, the kid will tell his or her parent that he wants to
slide too, then the parent will put his kid on the slide game...., it would be
easyer if you turn off the " free will" option, so the parent or the kid will
stay where they are.

And I've seen at The Sims Vacation that some times, if a kid is asleep, his
mother go to him and kiss him.


Samantha ( sends an addition...


I was reading through your strategy guide about taking care of babies and
noticed that you use 8 commands to quiet a crying baby. I don't know if it is
necessarily true, but with every sim baby I have had, I've only had to use 3. I
just use Feed, Sing, Sing. Sometimes a baby will fall asleep on the first sing,
but most often it takes the second. I remember reading somewhere (back when the
guide came out with the original game), that playing will only keep it awake. I
don't know if it's true for all games, but that's how it's always worked on


Robert "pyramus" Matthews ( sends another addition...


The method I've always used is Feed, Play, Feed, Sing. (I don't know if the
Play is completely necessary, but the Sim seems to like it and for all I know
it tires out the baby, helping it sleep better.) Ninety-five percent of the
time this puts the baby to sleep. If it doesn't, one more Sing always does the


Chili ( sends yet another addition...


...I need for baby care the two commands, namely Feed, Sing, Feed Sing. My very
first Sim family with Angela and Winfried ... has six children, Nicholas,
Jonathan, Louis, Jerome, Samantha and Mark-Anthony and it worked perfectly with
everyone of 'em. And: I figured out that they cry in a certain pattern. It's a
while since they were babies (ah, they grow up so fast...) and I can't remember
precisely the time but I am quite sure that they cried always around when it
was going-to-work time (7 am) and somewhere between [midnight]. What I am
deadly sure is, that with ALL six children, boys and girl, it was the SAME time
pattern so I could keep an eye on the clock and always could slow down the
sped-up time before I knew the child would wake up. Thus, what I want to say
is: If you have a baby and know you want a second one, note down the crying
times and you won't have nasty surprises with the social worker.


One of these days, I'll get another baby going to write down those cry times.

|16d. Strategies Submitted by Readers|

If you want to submit something, send it to It will be
posted here with all due credit.

|Perfect Personality|

submitted by Robert Lanciani (

Start a guy with zero personality and make a yellow potion. this will give you
a perfect personality(absolutely guaranteed).

|Boosted Start|

submitted by Santarelli Andrew (

For The Sims Hot Date, I made up a trick on how to start off really good and
doesn't involve using the "rosebud"cheat.

Ok first you make a family with only 1 person and make his active stat 10 and
his neat 5 and the rest is your pick. Then, put him a cheap lot that isn't too
expensive. Then just leave this family alone for a while....!

Next make another family with the same idea (1 person) and make the gender of
this family the oppisite of the other family. This family's stats don't matter.
Put this new family in another lot that isn't, again, not too expensive. This
time give this Sim a house to live in and then save and exit to the
neighborhood once this house has all the stuff needed to live.

Go back to the first family and dont give him a house just give him stuff that
will keep him alive and stuff that will raise his stats
(Cooking,Mechcanical,Logic,Creativitiy,Body,and Charisma). Now here comes the
good part. The first family will train his stats up really high without a job
with the Lawn gonme builder and the paint set and study up on all his skills so
they are awesome! If you didnt give him a house and just build stuff on the
lawn you won't have to worry about a job because the gnomes and paintings will
help get you money. Once this guy's skills are shot up pretty high, call the
second family you made and invite her/him over and get them to LOVE each other.
Then when the time is right, POP THE QUESTION! If the person accepts, YAY!

Next evict them from the house and build a new one. When the house just built a
poor person with no stats will have another person with GRAND STATS and could
get high on the ladder fast now thanks to that trick! Not to mension a big
portion of extra money on hand!

|Instant 40 Friends|

submitted by Erik Ilacad (

make sure your sim is alone in the neighborhood.  then buy the potion set (i
forgot what it's called) then make a red potion.. well, patience is a virtue!
or try buying a lot of antique lamps and wait till the genie asks about Love
etc etc..

if your successful with the genie or in making the red potion, a TOWNIE would
fall in love with your sim.. then flirt a little, then propose.  If they get
married, all the friends of the Townie would be included in your Family Friend
Count.  I tried it once, and I had 40+ friends!  But, as you know, the
friendship meters eventually fall down.  it's worth a try though!

[Note from PyroFalkon: I tested this--or rather, my mom tested this--and
reported that her sim only got 15 friends. While 15 is still a HUGE number,
it's not quite 40. Perhaps the individual Townie makes a difference.]

|The Newbies|

submitted by John Godwin (

In the tutorial, Bob Newbie is the character, also his mood never ever is bad
until he moves from the tutorial, give him perfect job skills, and then make
him a Army Man because they don't need friends for a long time and just reel in
the simoleans! When you have enough money, either save and evict or follow till
Betty Newbie comes and then save and evict.

|Another Way of Preventing Burglars|

submitted by Sketchy Details (

I like to place alarms at all lot entrances, but it mout them on a small guard
station of sorts... I just make an octangular room as small as possible, and
place an alarm on it. I place one at each lot entrance. It makes an amazing
effect to use a castle wallpaper on the outside, with a door on the rear, and
two basic rectangular windows on each side. It looks fine on the neighborhood
view, infact, great.

|Yet Another Way of Preventing Burglars|

submitted by Rick Saunders (

The burglar entered my house, and stole some of my stuff, but as he began to
run away, the build and buy options came back on, and I was able to set a alarm
right next to where he was, and build walls around the doors so he couldn't
escape.  I'm not sure if this always works, since I haven't had very many
burglars since then, and they were all caught right away.

|Burglars Aren't So Bad|

submitted by gamerdude

I feel that you have the wrong idea about burglars coming to your house. I love
them coming. What you have to do is know what the burglar will go for.
Computers and big-screen TV's are usually what they go for. Put these far away
from the door with the alarm. You'll get your 00 and nothing gets stolen.

|Super Skills|

submitted by Leah

[Before I quote the e-mail, I would first like to publicly apologize to Leah.
When I first saw this, I was 100% sure it was a BS technique because it
certainly SOUNDS like one. However, I've tested it, and it works fantastically.
Kudos, Leah!]

This trick can save a tremendous amount of time.  When creating any family,
first make all the people children.  Give them their real names but don't worry
about personality, looks, etc.  Then, go back and edit each person.  Make them
adults and choose their looks and personality.

Move the family in, and look at their skills.  Wow!  Your Sim will have a ton
of skills.  Sometimes more, sometimes less, but always some.  This is because
children always have a good job rating, a B or something.  When you turn the
kids into adults, the good job rating stays and they get lots of skills.  Your
sim will have a "job" but you should quit because the "job" doesn't make any
money or anything.  Use this on any sim, choose a career track that matches
their skills, and you will get promoted very quickly!


submitted by Svein Kvamme (

Currently I have around 60 art-easels placed in my garden forming a square
faced inwards. waste of money?

Well, when my sim makes a purple potion, I move the chem-set into the square
and order my sim to drink it inside. Close the entrance with a final art easel
after your sim has entered the square. Once refreshed he turns into a monster
and starts painting. Even if I wanted to, I can't make him stop painting until
he have finished all sixty, and if you have locked him in properly, he won't go
mess up you house. The mood bars is unchanged as long as your sim is a monster.

When you know that a "monsterpiece" can make you anything between 40 to 300
simoleans a-piece, it is quite fun to sell them afterwards, even if it takes
your sim all afternoon. 60 art easels made me about 7000 simoleans in my last

And I would recon it took about 2 days to paint and sell them, so check your
mailbox before you get started. Also it's not at all a social career path, but
then again we are talking mad science-artists here... :)

I haven't tried this from scratch, that is, I started with building gnomes, and
when I had made a little money to have me going, bought 2-3 chemistry set and a
5-6 art easels.  I don't think it is a ideal starting career, since these items
are quite expensive and once in a while you get fined 500 simoleans for
pestering the entire neighborhood.

|Making Money Through Magazines|

submitted by Robert "pyramus" Matthews (

First off, I don't consider using the "move_objects on" cheat to be cheating;
it's a necessity for just getting through the game sometimes, like when the
maid get stuck cleaning the shower over and over again (you'd think they'd have
fixed that bug by now), moving guests who are blocking others and just won't
move, or deleting the flies before their incessant buzzing drives you insane.
This new career requires you to interfere using "move_objects on", or else the
maid or Servo will throw away your rare-magazine collection in their misguided
cleaning zeal.

When you buy magazines downtown, they're not initially worth anything once you
get them home; they can be read or recycled, but they're just magazines.
However, when the clock edges past midnight, they suddenly become collectibles,
and they're valuable, too--collectors will pay 0 each if you delete them in
Buy or Build mode. You can see that this can add up to a very profitable

To get started, you need to put some tables outside the house. I use a row of
end tables, which is the most efficient, but any tables will do. It's also a
good idea to have a desk, a computer and a comfortable chair inside the house
right beside the door. You'll need to start work early in the morning after a
good night's sleep, a good meal, and a visit to the bathroom. All your mood
bars should be as high as possible, because this is a taxing occupation.

Call a cab. While you're waiting, have a seat and play at the computer to boost
your comfort and fun scores slightly. When you get downtown, go to the Solana
Towne Center or any other place that has a bookstore. Now, just buy magazines.
Ignore everything and everyone. You can buy 40 magazines before your overall
mood goes into the red and your poor miserable Sim starts complaining about
lack of fun. At about 20 minutes per transaction, this will take 13 hours or
so. Then it's time to head home, at which point your Sim will lay out his day's
bounty on the outdoor tables you've provided. Keep on top of this: when the
tables are nearly full, switch to Buy or Build mode and move all the
accumulated magazines to floors or lawns--otherwise your Sim will go hunting
for other surfaces to place the magazines on, wasting valuable time.

Once the Sim has unpacked the goodies, you have very little time to get his
mood bars up. First stop is probably the bathroom so he doesn't have an
accident; then a quick meal (since time doesn't elapse in the house, the meal
you prepared before you left is still fresh). If the energy meter isn't too
low, do something fun (the virtual-reality goggles are good), and then head off
to bed. The fun and social meters will still be very low, but that can be fixed
after a good sleep.

After midnight, you can switch to Buy mode and sell all the magazines for 0
each. A full set of five magazines costs 27 simoleons, so eight of each will
cost 6; if you really want to scrimp you can buy nothing but Victor's
Digest, at  each, for a total material outlay of 0. Add that to the cost
of the cab downtown, , and you can see that for an investment of between
0 and 6, you've earned ,400 for one day's work.

Even a less single-minded Sim can make a killing; a trip downtown with a
bathroom break, a stand-up meal, a game of pinball, and some socializing
(enough to keep all your meters in the midrange) can still leave enough time to
buy 15 or 20 magazines, which means that one leisurely buying trip a week can
finance your entire simulated life, including renovations, parties, and

|Monsterpieces II|

submitted by Jason Algarme (

When I make a purple potion, I make a "room" of art easels outside the house. 
Then my Sim drinks, turns into a monster, and heads into the "room" where I
seal it off.  The monster paints and paints and paints until every reachable
art easel is painted. Then, he changes back without breaking anything (except
the TV; I'll explain later), I sell the paintings and the art easels.  Voila,
tons of cash :D

There is a rather odd bit about this, though.  After finishing all the
paintings in the enclosed "room", he'll magically break the TV (which is
nowhere near him at the time) upon changing back.  And only the TV gets broken,
nothing else.  It happens to me every time, I must add.  Very odd; does this
mean that the TV (or maybe TV's, but I haven't tried out multiple TV's yet)
must be broken during a monster spree, and trapping him won't prevent the TV's


One of the absolutely best things about this game is that a very large majority
of it can be tweaked any way that you, the player, wish. Most things need a
very decent picture editor that can change bitmaps (*.BMP). MS Paint is an
option; a VERY crappy option, but still an option. Most people use Adobe

All the tools I mention (aside from MS Paint and Photoshop of course) can be
found at


What your sims wear is determined by bitmaps called SKINS. Heads are also
Skins, but they're independent of clothes.

In order to see what a Skin looks like, open a file in the following directory:

c:[wherever you installed The Sims]GameDataSkins

Any one in that folder will do.

If you notice, the skin tone is there if the skin shows any... um, skin. Make a
note of that! A sim who has dark skin can't wear something that a light-skinned
sim can, or else it would look really odd.

The file name of the skin tells the game what exactly the skin is for (body
tone, body type, gender, and age). Other sites have better information on
skin-making, so head to and click Make Cool Stuff first
to get some information.


You need a special tool in order to import wallpaper and floors, but it's not
needed for roofs. The tool is called Sim HomeCrafter.

The first thing you have to do is create your design. Walls need to be around
128x240 pixels. Floors and roofs should be 64x64.

Once you're happy with your design, save it wherever you want with any name you
want. Using HomeCrafter, you then set a price and description for your wall or
floor, then you can import it with one simple click. (The exact details on how
to operate HomeCrafter can be found in the program itself.) Roofs only need to
be saved AS BMPs in the GameDataRoofs directory.


The radio stations can play your own MP3s. Find the directory MusicStations
in your main The Sims directory. Then, move or copy any MP3 you want played
into the directory with the same name as the station you want it to play in.
You can't change the name of the radio stations, so you just need to try the
best-fitting genre for your song.

A quick note: the directory called "Country Dance" is empty and can be deleted.
All songs that play on the country dance station are in the directory called

Mike "Monsoon" Gibby ( submitted a great way to keep your
MP3s in other folders, as well as saving a ton of disk space...


I discovered an intersting tidbit in The Sims.  You can also make the radios
play whatever music you want by creating shortcuts to your MP3's.  That way you
can keep your MP3 collection organized in another directory and not have
duplicate MP3's wasting space in your Sims directory.



I won't get too preachy here, I promise. Let me just say that I don't like
cheat codes because they can seriously corrupt games. So, I don't recommend
using any of them. Ever.

That said, I know that some have their uses, and some players don't like
playing honestly. Also, some of these codes allow you to see the guts of the
program, which can be nifty to those interested in programming and such. So, I
present the codes list to you. These have been taken from

To start any of these cheats, hit CTRL + SHIFT + ALT + C, and a little window
will pop up in the top-left corner. Now you can type one of these cheats, and
finish by hitting enter. You can type multiple codes at once as long as you put
a semicolon between each.

Result  (Code)
1000 Simoleons  (rosebud)
Add new family history stat to the current family  (hist_add)
Appends the route destination list to AllRoutes.txt every time a route is found
Architecture tools automatically set the level as needed  (auto_level)
Automatically import and load indicated FAM file  (import )
Automatically load indicated house, no questions asked  (house )
Check and fix required lot objects  (prepare_lot)
Completely flush app to VM file when running Windows NT  (flush)
Crash game  (crash)
Create moat or streams  (water_tool)
Create shrunk_text_#.bmp files  (shrink_text  )
Create-a-character mode  (edit_char)
Display personality and interests  (interests)
Draw all animation frames disabled  (draw_all_frames off)
Draw all animation frames enabled  (draw_all_frames on)
Draw colored dots at each person's origin  (draw_origins)
Dump entire memory to core_dump_[date:time].txt  (core_dump)
Dump selected person's most recent list of scored interactions to a file 
Dump selected person's motive contribution curve to a file  (dump_mc)
Enable debug flag to show outcome choice dialogs for social interactions 
End sim logging  (sim_log end)
Execute "file.cht" file as a list of cheats  (cht )
Floorable grid disabled  (draw_floorable off)
Floorable grid enabled  (draw_floorable on)
Force an assert for testing  (assert)
Log animations in the event log window  (log_animations)
Map editor disabled  (map_edit off)
Map editor enabled  (map_edit on)
Move any object  (move_objects on)
No tutorial object generation when tutorial house is loaded  (tutorial off)
Prevent web browser crashes  (browser_failsafe)
Preview animations disabled  (preview_anims off)
Preview animations enabled  (preview_anims on)
Programmer stats  (tile_info)
Quit game  (quit)
Read in behavior tuning constants from Tuning.txt  (#import)
Rebuilds entire control panel/UCP from scratch  (rebuild_cp)
Refresh the BMP_ resources for all people whose IFF files are writable 
Rematch dependent textures and regenerate bitmaps for all user characters 
Restore tutorial  (restore_tut)
Rotate camera  (rotation <0-3>)
Routing debug balloons disabled  (route_balloons off)
Routing debug balloons enabled  (route_balloons on)
Invisible objects  (genable_objects off)
Run series of random operations on unhoused families  (fam_test )
Save currently loaded house  (save)
Save family history file  (history)
Say "plugh"  (plugh)
Say "porntipsguzzardo"  (porntipsguzzardo)
Say "xyzzy"  (xyzzy)
Selected person's path displayed  (draw_routes on)
Selected person's path hidden  (draw_routes off)
Set event logging mask  (log_mask)
Set free thinking level  (autonomy <1-100>)
Set game speed  (sim_speed <-1000-1000>)
Set grass change value  (edit_grass )
Set grass growth  (grow_grass <0-150>)
Set lot size  (lot_size )
Set maximum milliseconds to allow simulator  (sim_limit )
Set time of day for unpatched game version  (set_hour <1-24>)
Set z offset for thought bubbles (bubble_tweak )
Sets the neighborhood directory to the path  ()
Sets up the borders of the lot with non-editable flag. Requires rotation 
Sets whether menu items appear for in use objects  (allow_inuse)
Show memory view window in debug builds of the game  (memview)
Start sim logging  (sim_log begin)
Swap the two house files and updates families  (swap_houses 
Ticks disabled  (sweep off)
Ticks enabled  (sweep on)
Tile information displayed  (tile_info on)
Tile information hidden  (tile_info off)
Toggle allowing visitors to be controlled using the keyboard  (visitor_control)
Toggle assets report  (report_assets)
Toggle automatic object reset feature  (auto_reset)
Toggle calls to PeekMessage within sim loop  (sim_peek)
Toggle camera mode  (cam_mode)
Toggle display of unavailable interactions in person control menus  (all_menus)
Toggle music  (music)
Toggle object compression in save file  (obj_comp)
Toggle quaternion transformations  (quats)
Toggle sound log window  (sound_log)
Toggle sounds  (sound)
Toggle web page creation  (html)
Total reload of people skeletons, animations, suits and skins  (reload_people)
Trigger sound event  (soundevent)
Write out an RTE file every time a route is found  (write_routes)
Write out behavior tuning constants to Tuning.txt  (#export)


This section contains information I have recieved by e-mail that I haven't
tested it yet. If you have experienced anything that is written here, please
write me, and you'll get credit for confirming it.

All e-mail here is copied and pasted, so there are a few grammar and spelling
errors here and there.


Adyroo2002 (

I was in the newbies home on the tutorial and i was up to the part when you
have to get a job for one member of the family.This is when it happened. There
was only one job available, That was the thief career (dont know wot its
called) I took that job because i had no other choice. After The tutorial Betty
the thief was just going out for work (about 11pm) ,and Bob was in bed.Then
About 2 seconds later it came up saying theres a burgler and it was FEMALE! 
now this was the first ever time iv seen or heard about a FEMALE burgler.


DiscoDuckJamie (

The burglar is always male on the game.  So if when you make the house all the
doors leading to the outside are the girls restroom doors(don't know what they
are called) then he can not go into the house.


Chili (

I also read somewhere that the enviroment has a certain influence on the
child's character, i.e. their likes and dislikes and their talents go after
objects they had around them as babies, music, television, paintings.  I don't
know if that is true but some of my kids are very creative, maybe because there
had been a piano next to their crib.


Boe Neiswenter (

I was using the Newbies trick with the needs to get their skills up.  Bob just
got a job in the law enforcement and Bettie didn't have a job.  The newspaper
was still able to be used to get a job when the message for the carpool came up
for Bob.  I wanted Bettie to have the same job as him.  She got the job about
30 minutes sim time before the carpool arrived.  Bob was almost complete with a
skill and I thought he might be able to complete it before the car left. 
Bettie got in the car but Bob didn't in time.  I was waiting for the phone call
saying he missed work, but it never came.  He missed work the next day and
still no phone call.  Then Bettie got a promotion.  Bob missed one more day of
work, this time receiving the warning on the phone.



I would like to sincerely thank everyone on this list. Even if you did not
recieve a personal reply from me, consider yourself deeply thanked anyway.

|For FAQ v1.0|

Clay ( contributed some information on relationship meters

RHunterLand ( contributed several uses for kids

Robert Lanciani ( contributed another way to electrocute sims
and a strategy to get a perfect personality

Kain15840 ( contributed a detail on the toy rocket launcher

SweetE8907 ( testified that the lifetime relationship meter
can be brought to 100 in one day

|For FAQ v1.1|

Santarelli Andrew ( sent me a strategy to get a good
starting boost

Erik Ilacad ( gave me a strategy on relationships

John Godwin ( sent a strategy on the tutorial

Death Trav ( showed me a way to decrease fire damage

Sheepgood detailed the lifetime relationship meter a bit

Roel Kroesen ( sent me information on the "Talk" phone option

|For FAQ v1.2|

Both Decesare ( and David Singleton
(  corrected me by saying that the burglar can appear in
the day as well as night

|For FAQ v1.21|

Erik Swinson ( and Samuel Loucks ( found
a use for the Body skill

Sketchy Details ( gave a nifty way to prevent
burglars from getting inside the house

Glynnys Chua ( corrected the time that children go to school

|For FAQ v1.3|

Florist Lillia ( posed a theory about children's

Samantha ( sent an addition to my strategy on taking
care of babies

Glynnys Chua ( showed me how to get Santa Claus to appear

Karmo04 ( argued about the value of giving gifts

|For FAQ v1.4|

Green Devil ( specified exactly how sim kids'
personalities are determined

|For FAQ v1.5|

Mike 'Monsoon' Gibby ( submitted a great way to save disk
space if you want MP3s on your radio stations

Rick Saunders ( submitted another way to catch burglars

|For FAQ v1.6|

Darkflash5 ( gave me some exact numbers on the gain of
relationship points when you give a gift

Joseph Bull ( testifies that it is indeed possible to live
off of painting pictures only

gamerdude sent a reason why burglars may not be so bad after all

Leah submitted one hell of a fast and free way to gain skills

|For FAQ v1.9|

Rob Sevening ( told me that gift-giving is actually a
rejectable interaction

Trans ( pointed out that I missed the Tragic Clown disaster

|For FAQ v2.0|

LightningStryke ( reminded me about the Illness

|For FAQ v2.1|

LightningStryke ( gave me more details about the
Illness disaster

Rodrigo Argenta ( talked me into putting the
cockroaches in the disaster section

|For FAQ v2.3|

Doyle Brigman ( reminded me about the third method to
raise the Body skill

Dawn ( sent me details on alien abductions

|For FAQ v2.4|

KoRnRulz1987 ( gave me info on winning Vacation Island

|For FAQ v2.6|

Cameron ( added something to Unconfirmed Information

Adyroo2002 ( added something to Unconfirmed Information

Bianca "Kaori" Armbrister ( added something to
Unconfirmed Information

Ali Ateya Neama ( added something to Unconfirmed Information

rcoffelt sent me a few comments on my alpha strategy

Svein Kvamme ( submitted a strategy

Ali Ateya Neama ( also had one minor addition to the Guinea
Pig Plague disaster

|For FAQ v2.7|

Iua Yha (, Justin Miller (, and
Tawnee ( all confirmed that there are substitutes to
the dancers in the cake, and Justin told me the exact reason why

Tawnee ( also added something to Unconfirmed

Robert "pyramus" Matthews ( sent a strategy, a method
for taking care of babies, and an addition to the Santa Claus event

|For FAQ v2.71|

DiscoDuckJamie ( added something to Unconfirmed

Superkyle1991 ( confirmed something in Unconfirmed
Information, added a small note to the chemistry set, and added a small note to
the alien abduction event

|For FAQ v2.8|

GamePErson ( added a tidbit to the notes on the Old Prude

Lunar34 ( confirmed that there Claire reacts to
bear-related things outside your house

Chili ( sent a prevention to the Guinea Pig Plague,
another tip to taking care of babies, added something to Unconfirmed
Information, and confirmed that parents on Free Will will interact with their
babies (such as tucking them in)

|For FAQ v2.9|

Jason Algarme ( gave me additional information on monster
potions, a modification to a reader strategy, and confirmed the Evil Clone

|For FAQ v3.0|

Boe Neiswenter ( added a piece of unconfirmed information

Jason Algarme ( expanded his information on the monster


v3.0a (25 December 2002)
No new information, but I've changed my legal info. I'm now carrying my guide
on my own website; you can find the URL at the bottom of the document.

v3.0 (24 December 2002)
Added one piece of unconfirmed information, and Jason Algarme expanded his
research on the monster potion.

v2.9 (10 December 2002)
I got a very informative e-mail about the monster potion. I split it up and put
it in different places; there's part of it as a reader strategy, and part of it
as an addition to the Chemistry Set entry in the Other Events section. The
reader also further confirmed the Evil Clone Glitch, so more information about
it is in the Other Events section.

v2.8 (03 December 2002)
A small note has been added to the Old Prude entry in the Other Events And
Rumor Killers section. Two pieces of Unconfirmed Information has been confirmed
and moved. I've been told of another cure to the Guinea Pig Plague. I also got
yet another tip to putting babies to sleep (not permanently, wacko). One piece
has been added to Unconfirmed Information.

I've changed my copyright info slightly. The new copyright is RETROACTIVE,
which means even if you have old versions of the guide, you must adhere to the
new copyright. Thanks for your understanding.

Finally, one of my readers will be translating my guide to German soon. So, if
German is your first language (or you're really bored), you can get a different
version soon.

v2.71 (19 November 2002)
Bite-sized update today. A couple of things have been added to Unconfirmed
Information, and a piece of said information was confirmed and moved to the
Other Events section.

v2.7 (04 November 2002)
I've got a medium-sized update for everyone here. My first change is that I've
given up ignoring the cheat codes for the game. I didn't want to put them, but
a lot of people have been asking about them, and hey, you might as well have
the information all in one place, right? So, the cheat codes are in their own
little section.

All right, most of the rest of the info is reader contributions. I've had three
people confirm some information for me, so the info is now in the Throwing
Parties section. A huge strategy has been added in the Reader Strategy
subsection. The same person who submitted the strategy also sent additions to
raising babies and the Santa Claus event. Speaking of Santa, I've moved that
event to the Other Events section. Finally, one more piece of unconfirmed
information has been added.

v2.6 (29 October 2002)
Okay, this is a fairly large update. Let's see... first, I've got a new section
near the end of the document called Unconfirmed Information, which has e-mails
I've received with info that I haven't tested yet. If anyone can confirm
anything there, please write back to me, and you'll get credit for confirming
it. Second, I've redone the Money Tips subsection to make it a little more...
eh, user-friendly. Third, on the last update, I said that I added a money tip,
but I apparently didn't (my brain hiccupped or something), so I've finally
gotten around to adding it. Finally, there's a few miscellaneous reader
contributions, so check the Contributor List to see what exactly was added.

v2.5 (07 October 2002)
I've added a bunch of things to the Other Events section, and one small note to
the Other Little Things under the Money section.

v2.4 (05 October 2002)
This is an extremely light update. Only one reader submission has been added.

v2.3 (30 September 2002)
Added a new section called "Other Events and Rumor Killers." It's about... um,
other events, and... well, rumor killers. The only thing that's moved there is
the Old Prude sub-subsection. Otherwise, there's a few new things there. I've
also had a couple submissions, which you'll find scattered around.

v2.2 (25 September 2002)
Now that Unleashed is out, I've altered and updated this FAQ for it. And in
doing so, I realized something: the Job section absolutely sucks. So, instead
of just updating it for Unleashed, I've updated it for the other two. The
entire Money Strategies subsection has been moved there as well, and Jobs is
now simply a subsection of Money. Confused? Ah, just go to the revamped Section
6 to see what I mean.

v2.1a (17 September 2002)
A contributor corrected the name I had attributed to him for his contribution.

v2.1 (13 September 2002)
A small update today. First, a contributor gave me a few more details on the
illness disaster. Second, another contribution talked me into putting the
cockroaches as a disaster in the disaster section. And Unleashed is right
around the corner! Woo hoo!

v2.0 (22 August 2002)
Wow, version 2.0... And holy poop on a stick, this is a miraculous day indeed!
Check this: MY INBOX IS EMPTY!!! WOO HOO!!! In celebration of that, here comes
an update... I missed a disaster, and a reader pointed it out. I forgot to
credit the right people for their submissions in the last version too, so
that's been fixed.

v1.9 (19 August 2002)
This is a fairly large update in terms of original content. The big thing is
that I've opened a new section, which is the new section 9. It's all about the
astrological signs; at first, I was going to add it as a mere sub-section of
Sim Love, but I decided that it warrants some attention of its own. I've added
a disaster, which a contributor was kind enough to point out. I've added a
single tip on getting a marriage proposal accepted, listed in my Relationship
Strategies section. Someone pointed out that gifts can in fact be rejected, so
I've added that under the Sim Love section. With the NFL season getting
underway here, I've changed the sports quote in the Interests sub-section.
Finally, I've decided to start a mailing list for anyone interested in knowing
when my FAQ is updated. Check out the Contact Info for details.

v1.8 (12 August 2002)
I've expanded and rewritten the mood sections, including putting things like
how sims sleep and eat in the new places. Check the new 4a-4h sections.

v1.7 (11 August 2002)
I've expanded the sections relating to having dates with you Downtown and on
vacation. Also, I found out that others CAN reject invitations to go Downtown
or on vacation, so I've adjusted the few lines in my FAQ where I said it could
not be rejected. I've offset the Old Prude part of section 9a into its own
sub-sub section, because it really broke up the momentum the section had going
for it.

v1.6 (08 August 2002)
Four reader contributions are stars of this update. Two of them are strategies,
one of them is a numberical submission about giving gifts, and the fourth is a
testimony to the fact that you can indeed live off painting alone. Also, I've
added a small sub-section in the Vacation section... I don't know why I didn't
discover this sooner, but you can take a date with you to Vacation Island.

v1.5 (10 June 2002)
Finally, enough reader contributions piled up in my inbox (i.e., two) to
warrant another release. As always, head down to the Contributor list to see
exactly what was submitted. Also, I got an e-mail asking me how exactly to get
a sim to go Downtown with another... I thought I had covered it, but I didn't,
so I've put the instructions under the Downtown section. I also rearranged the
tables in the job section a bit to make the section much shorter.

v1.4 (02 May 2002)
I don't know why it took me so long to realize why I forgot it, but I've added
Interests under Sim Love. Check out the new 8b subsection. Also added a reader
contribution... apparently, sim kids' personalities aren't random after all.
Finally, I tested one reader's contribution and had to slightly modify it.

v1.3 (26 April 2002)
Time for a new version! I've added four readers' contributions, spread out
throughout the document. Check the end of section 16 to see who contributed
what and where.

v1.21 (11 April 2002)
Added two more reader contributions, including one strategy, and made a few
notes here and there to further polish up the document. Added the Version
History section near the end of the document. Also reorganized the last few
sections a bit.

v1.2 (08 April 2002)
Added one contribution. Also had a professional editor (really!) go through my
FAQ, so any grammar and spelling errors should be zapped now. I've scratched
the whole Vacation section and rewrote it since I have far more experience in
playing around in the new area now.

v1.1 (04 April 2002)
I'm up to my chin in readers' contributions! Time to clean out my e-mail
inbox... For a complete list of what was submitted, go down to section 16.
Also, I removed a contribution that I tested to be false. I also changed the
intro since I copied it from my old FAQ, and it's slightly behind the times.

v1.0 (26 March 2002)
This is an almost direct copy of my FAQ I wrote for The Sims: Hot Date.
However, I make no apologizes for plagerizing myself. ^_^ Anyway, all that I've
done is add info to the new area of The Sims world. Check it out on section 10.


This document is copyright 2002 for J. "PyroFalkon" Habib. If you plan to use
any of it as part of another FAQ, you need my permission first. However, if you
plan to post it on a website or e-mail it to someone or whatnot, you may do so
without my permission AS LONG AS IT IS NOT ALTERED IN ANY WAY. I'd like you to
drop me an e-mail so I know where you're going to take it, but I will not
require you to do so. You may download it or print it at your leisure.

The most updated version will always be found at these sites:

Other sites may have up-to-date versions, but check GameFAQs or my website


If any information is incorrect, or you wish to sumbit something, please e-mail
me. My address is found on the bottom of the FAQ. Credit will be given where
it's due.

If you submit something to me, I will credit you by the name you signed in the
message body or by the name attached to your e-mail. I will also post your
e-mail address unless you specifically tell me not to.

If you wish to be e-mailed when this FAQ is updated, send your request to me.
If you have a junk mail protector on your e-mail program, make sure you put my
e-mail address on the safe list, or my messages may not get through.

The number one question I get asked is generally: "Do you have a download of
The Sims?" The number two question is: "Can I have a CD code for The Sims?" Let
me answer those two right now: no and no. If you write me with either of those
questions, you're a moron. First of all, I don't know of any sites with a warez
copy the game, and even if I did, I wouldn't tell you. As far as the CD codes
go, I don't want to deal with thinking I gave you a code to a game that you DID
download from a site. There are ways to recover your CD code if you lose the
case aside from asking random people online for their number.

Okay, that ends that rant.

Generally, I don't like plugging myself, but my website covers The Sims, so
I'll put the URL here. Be advised, it hasn't been updated in quite awhile since
no one has submitted anything to me, but check it out if you want a few free

Good luck in The Sims, and may all your vacations be profitable.