Saturday, March 27, 2010

How Big is Yours?

Ok, round up! Time to compare!

How big is your download folder?

Yep, that little folder that we shamelessly fill to the brim with goodies for our simmies. Please note if you used some great program-like the compressorizer, or keep additional files in your download folder that would help other simmers out.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Stable Couples

It's the hubby and I's anniversary and in celebration here are my top 10 stable couples in Apple Valley. I only did 10 since I have only 18 couples and that included former couples as well. I ranked them by overall score instead of attraction score. Since we all know that attraction doesn't always lead to a stable relationship. Also, this only includes current couples-cause if you were a stable couple, you'd still be together.


10. Jolie and Jorge Dawson, 137

They met during university. She liked his assets and he liked her assets. Mutual appreciation of each other's assets lead to an engagement and fairytale wedding. Five kids, three cookbooks and one unexplained and very much secret affair later, they are still going strong.

10. Tobi Sweeny and Cameron Smith, 137

Maybe Tobi finally got it right, third's time the charm, right? No engagement ring yet, but they are parents to a newborn baby boy.

9. Fiona and Jesse Kent, 138
They might not have the highest attraction for each other-she harbors a secret sexy crush on a neighbor, but this couple is the power couple Apple Valley. Nothing can shake them, political scandal or unexpected pregnancy. Behind every powerful leader is a dedicated spouse.

8. Sazo and Sandy Warwick, 154
She was a part of the revolutionary gender exchange with Simborough and he was looking for a wife. Opposites not only attract, but produce stable relationships as Sandy's party-loving ways bring nothing but pleasure to her financially minded hubby. Besides, their coupling produced one of my favorite sims.

7. Suzanna and Bradford McMillian, 171

Suzanna traveled from Eden to visit little brother, Jesse, and to take a break from her stressful career. During her stay, Fiona introduced her sister-in-law to her "hottie coworker" and her brother made her promise not to drool over the man.  Who wouldn't fall in love with the handsome man and his cute daughter. The couple was fire from day one and quickly discovered that their fire had produced a pregnancy. Suzanna immigrated to Apple Valley and the duo has been on fire eversince, proving that you can find love later in life. Not only are they on fire, but they support each other.

6. Brandon and Ilila Peterson, 178

Together for almost five years, Brandon and Ilila are the newest couple to immigrate to Apple Valley. They met while he was in basic training, she was the daughter of his drill sargent which also meant that she was off-limits, not to mention the fact that she was still a senior in high school. After her college graduation they bumped into each other at a different military base in the commisary's produce aisle. She walked away with more than a bag of apples that day.

5. S'Ahmisa Warwick and Verde Herendez, 182
Best friends since the beginning of junior high school and soon afterwards they were exclusive. Not too soon, S'Ahmisa declined Verde's first proposal to go steady-claiming they were too young. Even now, S'Ahmisa's  shooting down any talk of marriage as they're still too young. Hopefully their romance will last during the turbalent university years.

4. Susie MacAstral & Anthony Wren, 202
They're a new love, so new that Susie is still scared to call it love. Anthony on the other hand knows exactly what he wants and he wants to be with Susie. Again, it will be good since this couple made both countdowns. (97 attraction score)

3. Julio and Rebecca Wilsonoff, 203
They liked each other as teens, but his age kept her at a distance. When Rebecca entered university and was finally legal, Julio wasted no time in claiming her. They've remained one of the most stable (and sometimes boring) couples in the hood.

2. Ginger and Grex Grey, 203

Their romance started as teens and during the great flood they couldn't help but build thier love while spending time in the close quarters of the shelter. Four children, six pregnancies, two affairs and several deaths later, this couple is still working on building their marriage.

1. Antonio and Carmela Herendez, 232
Somethings father does know best. Antonio accepted an arranged marriage so that he could gain the family business. It's an unconvential type of love, in fact they wouldn't even call it love, but it's working and they're still together after all these years.

Any surprises?

EDITED: Included #4 which is no longer top secret

Monday, March 15, 2010

Education in Apple Valley, Part 5

What and Why
I decided to do a series on how education in Apple Valley works, especially with the forthcoming changes. We will explore education from elementary school to obtaining an advanced degree. I wanted to move away from excessive skilling in my game and focus more on character development. This serves two purposes, one, it allows me to hone in on each sim's individual personality and preferences, two, it prevents excessive success. Right now, most sims are able to obtain a level 7 job without any trouble aside from making friends. This leaves very little room for variety in the game and most sims are financially well off. To ensure that I stay focused on this, I have now decided to try and do away with most toddler skills-instead focusing on teaching them how to walk, talk, etc.

The primary ways of educating the sims in all levels of education are skills, hobbies and interests. I often refer to skills as scores on "skill exams" (the number of skill points they have in a certain skill) or "core skill evaluation"-CSE (the number of total skills they have). Hobbies and interests will also be referred to in a similar manner. Now that the background is out of the way, let's move on.

Advanced Degree
Today, we're discussing obtaining an advanced degree, a terminal degree. I wanted there to be some variety in education levels of the sims. Either you went to college or you didn't, according to MAXIS. Even if you didn't go to college, you could be a, how about no.

Some sims do not attend university, graduate from university, or simply obtain an associate's degree in thier life.  Now, some sims are content with that and their goal isn't to be a surgeon, so being a nurse or EMT is great for them. Other sims want to excel in their careers a bit more, ok a lot more.

Any resident of Apple Valley with a bachelors degree may undertake an advanced correspondence course with Pierce University at any time. Tuition is $15,000 for the entire degree program and students must have at least a score of 20 on their entrance exam (Score on Core Skills Evaluation + #simyears work experience).

To complete their degree, students must graduate with at least a score of 35 on their CSE. Assuming the lowest possible CSE score of 20 from graduation from university, the student will be required to earn 15 skill points throughout their coursework.

Students are able to chose one of seven advanced degrees. A student's degree choice determines which skill, interest and hobby they will focus on maxing.

Advanced Degree in Fine Arts: creativity/Culture, Entertainment, Fashion/Arts & Craft, Film & Literature, Music & Dance

Advanced Degree in Culinary Arts: cooking/Food/ Cuisine

Advanced Degree in Business Administration: charisma/Money, Work /Film & Literature

Advanced Degree in Technology: mechanical/Weather/Tinkering, Science

Advanced Degree in Applied Science: logic/Animals, Environment, Paranormal / Science, Nature

Advanced Degree in General Studies: cleaning/School, Sci-Fi, Toys, Travel / Cuisine, Fitness, Games

Advanced Degree in Public Service: body/Crime, Health, Politics, Sports /Fitness, Sports

In level one, students must score a 10 on their skill exam correlated to their major and a 35 on their CSE (ie, a student focused on the Advanced Degree in Culinary Arts must have at least 10 cooking skills and at least 35 skill points total).

In level two, students focus on refining their studies. Students must earn at least a 10 on their CIE in their focused skill. Using the example above, our Culinary Arts student must have 10 interest points in food. If multiple interests are listed, students chose one interest to focus on. Students will use magazines and sharing interest conversations to earn interests.

In level three, students continue to focus on refining their studies. Students must earn at least a 10 on their CHE in their focused skill. Using the example above, our Culinary Arts student must have 10 points in cuisine hobby. If multiple hobbies are listed, students chose one hobby to focus on. Students will use any means available to develop their hobby.

In level four, students focus on perfecting their studies and finishing their thesis. Students will use Monique's computer to write 3 research papers on their core skill (3 different articles on the their focus skill). After completing their research papers, students must write their thesis. Students will use the computer to write a novel, this novel is their thesis. Upon completing of thier thesis , students graduate with an Advanced Degree and a dandy little diploma to hang on their walls. Their options have now opened to the darkest green sections on the career table.

In summary,

Advanced Degree
-35+ CSE graduation
-degree focus skills via computer
-skill max in 1+ skill
-interest max in field
-hobby max in field
-3 research papers


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