The Sims Mobile Might Actually Make A Sims Addict Out Of Me

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The Sims Mobile is set for release later this year. EA

I don’t know much about The Sims. I do know that the fans out there who know The Sims generally LOVE The Sims, and it’s been a franchise on the periphery of my life for many, many years. So when I got the chance at EA Play 2017 to do a demo of the new mobile title in the franchise, The Sims Mobile, I took it. Because while I know next to nothing about The Sims Mobile, that in itself makes me the perfect person to try it out.

After all, The Sims Mobile is clearly aimed at an install base that is much, much larger than the PC players who love The Sims 4. EA wants to make this game accessible, and they succeeded. In my brief demo I had only two questions in my mind. 1. Is this fun? 2. Would I want to keep playing? And the answer to both is yes and yes. The Sims Mobile is bringing an easy pick-up-and-play experience to gamers like me who might not be franchise experts, but will find the joy in simple things like designing a great character and exploring a vibrant world.

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The Sims Mobile brings franchise fundamentals to your smartphone. Photo: EA

I started out slapping a generic randomized name on my Sim, and then strolled up and down her block interacting with neighbors. I got to pick her traits, and settled on artsy, nerdy and flirty (like ME teehee!). After a few chats with the neighbors I noticed I had an objective window to inspect. My first job: find a job. In town. Ok, where IS town exactly? One tap of the ubiquitous map icon (a waypoint resting gently on a map i.e. Google Maps logo) and a larger world map opened up. I tapped the town and my Sim zapped there instantly.

And, surprise surprise, there was a coffee shop right in front of me in need of a barista. I have a career! Look out world, Randomized-Name-I-Don’t-Remember is going to work her way to the top. But first, a makeover, because I discovered the customize option in one of the many clickable menus.

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The latest trailer for The Sims Mobile confirms you can, in fact, get down and/or get funky. Photo: EA

If this sounds a bit rambling, sorry. I’m trying to convey the intuitive nature of the UI and how helpful all the pop ups are. It was EASY to figure out what to do, and to explore the menus without getting overwhelmed. As a mobile experience it seems like it will play in a passive, simple to manage way that won’t require lots of reflex tapping. My big test for mobile games, as a New Yorker who has to play on the subways a lot, is whether it can be done one-handed. The Sims Mobile passes with flying green diamonds.

Once I started my career, a series of tasks appeared in the coffeeshop that allowed me to increase my career level and earn a heap of different reward tokens tied to systems that are too complex to fully grasp in such a brief demo. Regardless, it was fun watching my Sim do her thing in the shop and earn experience towards … whatever. I’m not a Sims guy, so forgive me if I’m glossing over features that would be more familiar to an experienced player. But my takeaway in my 20 minutes or so with the game is that The Sims Mobile is the first title in the franchise that could really reach a gamer like me, who spends his time playing other titles on PC but barely anything this deep on his phone.

The Sims Mobile is currently in soft launch in Brazil, with plans to release stateside by the end of 2017. 

Here's the latest trailer, too:

 

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