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"The Sims 2 Nightlife" Review

Dancing All Night Long

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The Sims 2 Nightlife

The Sims 2 Nightlife

Electronic Arts
Controlling a family of virtual people, called Sims, is not always easy. They desire food, a career, a house, friends, babies, and lovers. Each Sim has their own life desire and aspires to things. Finding them a mate is usually high on their list - even Sims who usually have their nose stuck in a book. "The Sims 2 Nightlife" gets Sims out of the house and onto the dance floor or the bowling alley.

An Overview

Throughout development, gamers and previewers have been mentioning that "The Sims 2 Nightlife" is a lot like "The Sims Hot Date." It is a fair comparison. The dating is similar, the dating meter has a different twist to it and the Downtown is full of ways for Sims to enjoy themselves whether they are just hanging out with friends or on a blind date. Even if the new gameplay elements are similar to those found in "Hot Date," they were needed and desired by many owners of "The Sims 2."

Dating, cemeteries, cars, rugs, ability to change aspirations, different sized lots, more building options, all are things that add to game. "The Sims 2 Nightlife" doesn't add a lot of depth, instead the pack adds a bunch of smaller features that end to the breadth of the game. Maxis has said that they try to add something for every type of gamer. In this case they have. New building options (diagonals in pools, garages, half walls) for the home designers and new social interactions and dating for the gamers who actually play their Sims.

Downtown

The Sims 2 Nightlife

The Sims 2 Nightlife - Playing Poker

Electronic Arts
Downtown is where all the action takes place. It is a new area that hosts a town full of lots packed with new games, shopping, and other other activities. Maxis did an incredible job of getting a good range of types of lots Downtown. A 50s diner and bowling alley is perfect for families and dating. Just try getting a playful sim away from the bowling alley! Sims can live Downtown (some new Maxis homes showing off the garage options), giving the complete urban feel (because the active house now shows the neighboring lots in the background) and be that much closer to their favorite art museum, weekly poker game, or nightclub.

While you are Downtown, you may meet up with Vampires. Yes, that's right. Vampires cannot be out during the day, so you'll find them out late at night dancing and bowling. If your Sim becomes close friends with a Vampire, the Sim could be bitten and become a Vampire himself! There is an antidote if you or the Sim no longer wants to be a Vampire.

Sims can choose to go on Dates or go on Outings with people from work or other friends. The results of good outings could be a promotion, skills, or maybe even a dinner coupon.

The Cars

I was never one of the Simmers would had cars on their wish list. We had taxis that got Sims where they needed to go, why waste development time on that when something else could be done? "The Sims 2 Nightlife" gives us 5 types of cars and multiple paint colors. Ownership of the cars is given to one Sim. The carpool for that Sim no longer comes. An added bonus is having an one extra hour to get to work if you drive. The small addition of not having to wait for the carpool or taxi to show up, so Sims can go to a community lot, downtown, or to work makes a world of difference. Surprisingly, there is something so oddly satisfying about seeing a Sim get into their own car and drive off, instead of depending on a ride.

The Dating Game

The Sims 2 Nightlife

The Sims 2 Nightlife

Electronic Arts
Without "The Sims 2 Nightlife," Sims essentially dated potential matches without ever leaving the house. That all changes with "The Sims 2 Nightlife" installed. Check each other, chat a bit, and ask a Sim on a date - then the fun begins. The dating meter measures how well the date is going. If the date goes well, more time will be added. Otherwise, there is no point in wasting anyone's time, and the date ends early if there is no connection. Dates are, generally, very easy, almost too easy. As long as Sims have a decent relationship with each other, they can easily have a good time together if there is chemistry.

Chemistry measures how well Sims are matched for each other. It goes beyond the physical attributes that an attraction is measured by. Chemistry is determined by aspirations, personality, and interests. Sims can have amazing chemistry together or they can be repelled by each other.

Now back to dating. If a date goes well, your Sim may get a gift, love letter, or flowers left on their doorstep. Otherwise, watch out for flaming bags of poo. No joking. Speaking of bags of poo, you really need to watch out for Sims that become furious because they catch you cheating or flirting. They will make your life miserable.

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