Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Addie and Toby Conquer France

I bought the World Adventures expansion today. I decided Addie and Toby should go on a vacation, since this is the sort of stuff they have to deal with every day:

Nathan was playing beautiful music with his guitar, and I decided to take some video of him and his brothers enjoying his playing. Unfortunately it was midnight, and they were in Addie and Toby's room, so when Addie and Toby tried to get some sleep, it didn't work out too well.

They didn't really get mad or yell at him, though. I guess the music must have been too soothing.

Now that Toby's old, he's able to retire, so he did just that. It was 7 a.m. and everybody crowded around Toby to congratulate him on his retirement. Everyone was happy, but no one was as happy as Toby and Nathan.

After the kids left for school and Eddie left for work -- goodness, it's weird now that Eddie isn't a kid anymore -- Toby and Addie spontaneously decided to leave for France. They just left without telling anyone -- maybe a scribbled note on the kitchen counter, "Hey kids, went to France, bbl." Eddie'll take care of his brothers, right?

As soon as they got to France, Addie went searching for some FRIGGIN' ADVENTURE. Thankfully, the government of France apparently keeps ADVENTURE BOARDS so that anyone seeking some ADVENTURE can go and find some at any time with ease.

Also, the adventure boards sparkle.

Toby, meanwhile, is making a new friend named "MARC ASWAD, EXPLORER," who probably got teased a lot in school because his name sounds unfortunately like "asswad." He also is wearing goofy robes and kinda looks like a Hare Krishna.

Marc Aswad, Explorer, would like to talk to you about Krishna Consciousness.

Addie went to the local general store to meet up with her contact for the ADVENTURE.

I don't trust her. She looks like a gypsy witch and she wears a tiny ascot. Plus, you can't see it in this picture, but she totally has crazy forest-animal-themed wallpaper in her store.

She tells Addie to buy a tent and some dried food from her store before she goes on her ADVENTURE. Her quest, by the way, is to go into some Celtic Ruins and find something the witch-gypsy dropped in a hole. Probably a box of tampons or something, I don't know. Addie stocks up on some food and the nicest tent they have for sale, and then she inexplicably clenches her fists and then makes THIS epic pose:

Maybe it's her ADVENTURE FACE.

Then Addie bought some more stuff: a SnapTastic Flimsy-Cam disposable camera, "Shower-in-a-Can," a Little Boy Soldier Incense Holder, something called "The Kenspa," and the Treasure Chest of Alouette. I have no idea what any of these are.

Addie rushed to the Base Camp (a nice little hostel-type building where they're staying) to tell Toby about everything.

"Come on, Toby! We're going on an ADVENTURE."

And away they went, driving the whole way there on scooters, which amused me a lot more than it probably should.


The only way this could be better is if they were also wearing Amelia Earhart aviator helmets and goggles.

When they got to the Celtic Ruins, Addie found a bunch of junk sticking up out of the ground and excitedly began digging it up.

Some bones, a beer bottle, and the handle of a screwdriver? It's just like CSI!

She ended up finding a couple of ancient relics, one worth 333 simoleons! Those will be fun to take home. Nevermind that she's desecrating a sacred Celtic burial ground. They won't mind, right? Meanwhile, Toby hopped off his scooter and immediately called Marc Aswad, Explorer. I'm not sure if he was asking him for advice on how to explore, or if he just missed the sound of his voice.

While Toby was chatting on the phone, Addie was all, "Eff this, I'm going into these spooky tombs over here for some ADVENTURE."

Just look at her expression. It just says, "I am unimpressed with your tomb, Celts. If you're trying to scare me, you're going to have to try harder than that. Now let's do this."

Then a spooky bit of music played, and her expression changed to this:

"Holy shit, nobody said there was going to be a soundtrack."

The stairs led to a small room with a pile of rubble against one wall. Addie cleared the rubble to reveal a suspicious-looking brick wall, but nothing else.

Now what?

The brick wall swung around -- a secret door! Suddenly I am playing Addie Roth, Tomb Raider.

In the next room, Addie found a strange-looking panel.

Hmmm, I wonder what you do with THIS?
Yada yada, Addie solves a few puzzles and finds a few ancient coins and whatnot. Then she finds a hole in the wall and sticks her hand in it.

That's the expression I'd have, too, if I was sticking my hand in a mysterious hole in some tomb wall.


But also a secret switch, and then in another room she finds OH GOD A SKELETON


I'm not sure Addie can take this ADVENTURE. She's old, you know. She's no Indiana Jones. More like Mrs. Jones from Indiana who lives down the street and wins first prize at the county fair with her pies.

And now Addie Roth: Tomb Raider is pushing gigantic stone statues like a champion even though she is an old woman. Where is her husband?!

... I guess Toby just doesn't have the appetite for ADVENTURE that Addie has.

Speaking of sleeping, Addie's pretty worn out herself. Going on ADVENTURES will do that to you.

Buuuuuut I can't find her tent in her inventory. I'm pretty sure I bought that tent... didn't I? Well... it's a good thing Addie has her moodlet manager with her!

There. Now back to ADVENTURING.

The next puzzle revealed a flight of stairs leading further underground, to some really cool-looking ruins and a hedge maze.

There were all sorts of treasures and doodads littered around the maze, and Addie went about scooping them up like a grandma tidying up her house. In one corner she found an abandoned campsite with a skeleton and a chilling message on the wall. To find out what the plaque says, you'll just have to get the game.

Meanwhile, Toby is back at the base camp walking around in his unders in front of all these foreigners.

Whatever, they're European, they don't care.
He's also buying lots of French recipes in a cozy little bookshop.

Addie solved one puzzle by crying crocodile tears for some long-dead Celts. Then a hole opened up in the ground, and SURPRISE, she stuck her hand in it.

Addie Roth, Hole Explorer.
Then in a secret room, she finds a TREASURE CHEST! YEEEAAAAAHHH!!!

You found the DUNGEON MAP!

Finally she gets to the end room, and some EPIC ACTION ADVENTURE MUSIC plays, causing me to frantically look around for some sort of final boss. What? Final bosses in The Sims, it could happen.

She finds the final lost treasure in a hole that the witch-gypsy was talking about, and it's... a baseball.

Not much better than a box of tampons.
There are a whole BUNCH of gravestones and monuments in here. Remembering that mourning the last one opened up a hole with a gemstone in it, Addie proceeds to mourn every single one of the tombstones.

Only one revealed any treasure, though.

 Addie is grumpy and tired and it's time to go home. Toby makes dinner while Addie naps in the common room.

After dinner, they go to bed. While they're happily snoozing away, these two weirdos come into their room:

They walked in, stood at the foot of the bed, and gossiped, giggling at each other. Then the dark-haired one fist-pumped triumphantly, and they left. I'm convinced they're plotting some sort of evil against Addie and Toby.

The rest of the night passes uneventfully. Toby wakes up before Addie and starts making everyone else's beds in his underwear.

It's the last day of their vacation. They get lunch at the Catania Cafe.

Note the angry-looking fellow standing outside the window. He was the sole employee of this cafe, and when he wasn't immediately needed to serve people food, he stood outside the cafe and glowered. Maybe that's how they do things in France.

Then they visited a "nectary," which is pretty much a winery, but for some reason Will Wright is all anti-booze. I have been waiting forever and ever for the sims to invent alcohol so I could get them drunk, because as funny and kooky as sims are, can you imagine a drunk sim? Addie and Toby spent almost $4,000 on four bottles of nectar, a nectar rack, and a nectar maker.

They both tasted some samples of nectar, and to my disappointment did not get tipsy. They just got the regular "Sugar Rush" moodlet as well as an additional feel-good moodlet. Addie got "Commanding Complexity" and Toby got "Astonishing Aroma." I'm not sure I would want anything I was drinking to have an aroma that was astonishing. It's not necessarily a pleasant adjective.

Finally they went to the museum and looked at some art.

Toby stepped behind the red rope. TOBY YOU'RE NOT SUPPOSED TO GO BEHIND THE RED ROPE. But he did a little dance and then threw his fists in the air. He was just SO EXCITED to get closer to this DISGUSTING GREEN STATUE that looks like a cross between a Chinese dragon and a pug.

There were some stairs leading down which were roped off. A plaque on the wall nearby read something like, "Sorry, the basement exhibit is closed for renovations." Nearby there was a hole in the wall. Of course Addie stuck her hand into it. She activated a secret switch which opened a secret door at the end of a secret hallway and revealed some secret stairs leading down to the secret basement.

Their vacation was over before Addie had the chance to get too deep into any more ADVENTURES. They arrived safely at home, and everything was exactly how they had left it. No really, the kids were still at work/school and it was the same time and everything. TIME WARP~! It would be nice if vacations really worked like that.

Let's do the time warp again.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Eddie Grows Up, Grows His Hair, Grows a Garden.

By the way guys, I'll be asking you to vote on your favorite kid sometime soon. I can't follow all three of them forever. Don't vote YET; I'm going to give each of them a post focusing on them alone, to better acquaint you with the characters in my mind. We'll start with Eddie, the oldest.

It's Eddie's birthday today, actually. He's about to turn 18 and enter the Young Adult life stage. He wakes up at 6 a.m., eats waffles for breakfast, then goes for a swim. A pretty nice start to a birthday! Then it's off to the park to catch a fish for a science project at school.

At the park, there's a nice family having a picnic. Eddie's sort of idly watching them as he fishes, and then he notices an extremely evil-looking woman approach them. She has a fur coat and everything.

This could be a scene straight out of 101 Dalmatians.

I'm surprised to see that the two redheads are Ursines -- remember Addie's stalker? The man is not related to them, but the evil woman is! Her name is Tiffany Ursine. Eddie senses a conflict ahead and, being a nice guy, decides to intercept the evil Tiffany Ursine before she can ruin their picnic.

Through this interaction, Eddie learns that Tiffany is Brave, Grumpy, and Athletic. Not exactly the kind of person you want to go around picking fights with.

As I'm watching the two of them argue with each other, I realize this Tiffany person looks familiar...

Oh my god, it's HER. The girl Nathan was flirting with before I realized how scary-looking she was! She cleaned up well, I must say. Must have been one of those ugly duckings.

Speaking of Nathan, guess who shows up at the park!

It's Nathan, and he starts mocking Tiffany's grumpiness. He must have used his special brotherly instincts to sense that his brother needed help. He left immediately after mocking Tiffany, though. And try as he could, Eddie couldn't get Tiffany to leave the park. No matter how rude he was to her, she would only think he was "okay." He eventually gave up and went to attend a Logic class at the science facility.

After the class, Eddie made a new friend named Donnell Mock, who is a big computer nerd. Eddie himself is a nerd; you might not be able to tell, what with all the working out, but if you'll recall, Eddie is actually a Genius. He just also happens to be Athletic. He's one of those rare people who are incredibly smart, but also attractive and athletic. He also has the Lucky trait, which explains this. He's also Excitable, the definition of which is "Your Sim will cheer for and be excited about doing the basic things in life. Yay! Wooo!" So Eddie is just a cute, excitable, athletic nerd. He has yet to get his negative trait, though. We'll see about that.

Eddie and Donnell became fast friends and talked for HOURS until it was dark. Donnell was hungry, so Eddie invited him over for dinner. Once they got to the sidewalk in front of Eddie's house, Eddie decided to have his birthday RIGHT THEN AND THERE.

Back to the long hair again, huh Eddie? Ah well, I'll let you keep it if you're so determined about it. And uh... nice shirt.

Unfortunately he's pairing it with those horrendous purple and black vertical striped suspendered pants that his father wore when courting his mother. Remember those? Allow me to jog your memory.

"I am sorry, Inigo. I did not mean to jog it so hard."

It's like Eddie dug around in his dad's closet and put on the most atrocious things he could find, just for kicks. And hey, I guess I never realized that Eddie wore the same T-shirt, too. Egad. He's like a little mini-Toby.

I'm diggin' the jammies, though.

NEWSFLASH: More proof that Addie's losing her faculties:

Gardening in her nightie and fuzzy pink slippers.

Eddie has gained his final, and incidentally his negative, trait: Snob. It makes sense for someone who was born a genius and is naturally athletic and lucky all the time to be a snob, doesn't it? He holds himself to high standards, but he holds everyone and everything else to high standards, too. The first thing he did this morning was admire himself in the mirror for about twenty minutes. Then he worked out.

Just so you can get the full effect, here's the adult outfit Eddie was given by default:

Eddie, honey, nobody has the right to be a snob in that getup.

So that needs to be changed, obviously.

I felt like I was playing up Eddie's athleticism too much, without giving enough attention to the brainy side. So I decided to put him in something a little more scholarly.

Now he's like Clark Kent, all muscly under that sweater and those glasses.

Unfortunately, sims can't go to college anymore like they could in The Sims 2, or I'd have Eddie do that. So instead, he marches right down to his beloved Landgraab Industries Science Facility and gets a job. He's a genius, so of course they hire him right away. It doesn't take a genius to see that, ha ha.

Now he works as a Test Subject in a place with a giant golden robot statue in the lobby, and that is awesome.

As a scientist, Eddie needs better Gardening skills. Addie is territorial about her garden and won't let him near it. He's excited and wants to get started right away though, so he rushes to the store to buy some seeds. Pretty soon he's got his own garden in the backyard.

Meanwhile, there's a commotion upstairs in the house, and I get a notification that it's Toby's birthday, which means Toby is turning into an elder RIGHT NOW. Happy birthday, T--