MySims (Wii) Review

By James Temperton 15.10.2007 1

The Sims is probably up there on a podium as one of the most successful and industry defining games of all time. The original formula has a million and one pointless and often ridiculous expansion packs. Nothing however, has ever been quite as ridiculous as this. The strange lovechild of The Sims, Animal Crossing and Hey, Making Furniture Seems Like a Fun Idea, MySims is an amalgamation of ideas that tries to be everything and at the end of it all, fails to be anything particularly entertaining.

Cute, colourful, child-friendly and with lots of building to do, MySims has enough structure to keep the idiotic entertained and the intelligent vaguely busy for a few hours. Normal Sims action this ain't. The objective of the game is simple. You take the form of a handy little builder, with the challenge of turning a drab and abandoned town into a bustling world full of fun and joy...perhaps. To do all this you need to start building houses, furniture and of course you need to run around the town talking to people and generally being a good egg. And this time you ARE your Sim, rather than being some sort of omniscient lord.

Rather than being a Wii version of The Sims, MySims is a totally different concept. Everything is stripped down and simplified. For example, creating your Sim to take into the town couldn't be easier. All you have to do is point at the part of the body you want to mess about with and hit A to scroll through all the different looks and styles. There are a remarkable amount of looks on offer and its all very quirky and funky, or so we're told. When all that's done you pick how your little friend will sound when they talk, what there name is and then you shove them into your newly created town. Simple, see?

And the same can be said for constructing houses. Simply chuck some blocks into place, shove on some windows and doors and you have your very own house. You can make a whole house in about 2 minutes and it won't look like a pile of toilet cake, unless of course you want it to, in which case go wild. Our workshop is a large pink tower with flowers and flamingos all over it. Utterly glorious as this may all sound, this is about the be all and end all of MySims. Eventually people will start to stay in the local hotel and with a bit of persuading they'll decide that your town is the hottest place in the world and that they want to drop their lives and move in immediately. Rinse and repeat for hours on end and you've completed the MySims experience.

The game is kept ticking over my an endless drudging stream of tasks. One minute you might be making a some furniture for someone in your workshop and the next you might be creating a new restaurant, a house or doing some general DIY. Everything you design in this game works around the idea of essences. Be nice to someone and they uncontrollably spray their 'happy essence' all over the room; dubious and potentially shocking as this may sound, it really is true. You can collect essences of fruit, of things you dig up from the ground (digging, by the way, is great fun), from people and from fishing in the local pond. It is all wonderfully simple and wonderfully good fun, to a point, and allows you to be really creative with the things you design and the places you decorate. In MySims, the world is your very garish and bizarre oyster.

In time you will open up new abilities (like new tools) and new areas of your town like local caves, forests, beaches and new bits of the town too. Whilst this is all very lovely and attmitedly hugely satisfying, the lack of social interaction, friends, depth, the ability to eat or sleep or do anything except build constantly or steal people's essence does get a bit grating.

Aside from the relative tedium and simplicity (which is both a blessing and a hindrance) the use of Wii controls in this game is worryingly tricky. At one point we spent nearly five minutes trying to get a block to fall into place using the Wii-mote, but for some reason the game just wouldn't have it. Thankfully for our own health and that of our Wii, the block did eventually fall into place and all was well with the world again. Joy and rapture. The problem is, the game doesn't quite seem to understand your movements with the Wii-mote all the time, and when a game depends on this mechanic for most of its gameplay elements, it falls a bit flat on its face. It just feels like this game could've done with a few more months in the oven. Half-baked, half-arsed and full of half-finished good ideas that never quite come to fruition.

As a final point, for some reason this game is plagued by rather relentless loading times. Everytime you enter a building, leave a building, enter a new world, leave a new world, enter your workshop...loading. And the loading screen isn't even very pretty to look at, it is literally a pile of bricks. Fun.

Cubed3 Rating

6/10
Rated 6 out of 10

Good

We really want to like this game and congratulate EA once again on another fine Wii offering, but it falls disappointingly short of what it could achieve. After excellent initial promise, MySims simply falls flat on its face. The best game of its type on the Wii, but seeing as there isn't another game like it on the Wii yet that isn't saying much. You'll either love it or you'll hate it, but this game left us feeling wonderfully indifferent.

Developer

EA Games

Publisher

EA

Genre

Simulation

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  6/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  9/10 (16 Votes)

European release date TBA   North America release date 2007   Japan release date 2007   Australian release date TBA   

Comments

Great review James. :Smilie I personally was on borderline between a 6 and a 7, as I really enjoy the concept but things about it do get on my nerves. The load times in particular are nasty - it's constantly attempting to load/stream data, which is quite odd considering the play areas aren't even very big. I think it's worth playing and seeing what insane things you can build, but it could have been so much more.

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