by Marjolein Verheij
previewed on PC
Around the world
The Sims 3 has graced the shelves for barely two months and already Electronic Arts is announcing the first expansion pack. The Sims 3: World Adventures will be released on the 17th of November and sees your Sims travel the world, but not quite in the same way as The Sims: Vacation and The Sims 2: Bon Voyage. This time around, your Sims won’t just be taking a laidback holiday as they can also go adventuring, Indiana Jones style!
Three exotic locations are available for you to travel to, each a parody on existing locations in France, Egypt and China. You will experience rich culture in Champs Les Sims, venture into ancient tombs in the pyramids of Al Simhara (you can become a Mummy in Al Simhara!) and master martial arts in Shang Simla.
The three destinations are expected to be about the same size as Sunset Valley in the main game, so certainly worth the simoleons you will be spending on the flight there. Upon arrival, it is up to you whether to just enjoy a quiet holiday and meet the locals, or to be a little more adventurous. Obviously the most fun is to be had when you choose the latter.
Your starting point is ‘base camp’. From there you can mingle with locals, enjoy the wares that local businesses offer or accept challenges from mysterious strangers to find treasures and discover what’s lurking in hidden caves. These challenges, and the way they have to be played, are something entirely new to The Sims franchise. Instead of completing random tasks you have to follow a set, puzzle-based story.
You might, for example, need a certain skill to open the door of a tomb, enter and find an artifact before you can open another door. Or you might need a specific item to be able to continue your quest, or uncover a secret first, which will lead you to the next level of your explorations. The artifacts you find can be taken back to Sunset Valley and put on display in your home where they will no doubt be admired by all your friends.
World Adventures offers not only puzzle-based gameplay but will also introduce new skills like Photography, Martial Arts, Nectar Making and a slew of new clothes and items. There will also be some new ways of making money. The locals in the three locations have new personality traits that are in line with their culture. Their looks and clothing have been adjusted in a similar manner. Your Sim can befriend these new Sims, fall in love and even marry them to add those new traits to the gene pool of future children.
For this expansion pack, Electronic Arts got some famous names involved again to provide the music. You will have the chance to get down, Sim-style, to artists such as Nelly Furtado, rising star Pixie Lott, German sensation Stefanie Heinzmann, breaking new rock band Matt & Kim and global indie dance rockers Young Punx.
Be an adventurer
Will all the new stuff be enough to please the fans of the series? Time will tell. But with lots of exploring to do in three different countries there's surely lots of fun to be had. Bring on the pyramids, I'm ready to be an adventurer.