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Video game walk throughs
The Sims: Makin Magic walk throughs for PC
 
The Sims Makin Magic Computer game cover
Gamermall.com rating:
8.0

Once you get past the title screen and all that, you'll come to a view of the
huge neighborhood. There may be a bunch of houses scattered around, one of
which has a big flashing arrow. That's the tutorial house, and I recommend you
play it before leaping into The Sims. Of course, you don't have to, and I cover
in this FAQ pretty much everything it says in the tutorial.

Across the top are a few buttons. The one you're interested in is the left-most
of the center group, the one with a few people on it. Click that and you'll be
taken to a screen that lists all the families that are not currently in houses
(I call this the barracks; what can I say, I'm a fan of Worms: World Party).
Click an empty line (or the button with a few people and a plus sign) to create
a new family.

You'll be prompted to enter a last name. For my examples, I'll refer to my
primary family that I've got going here... so, type in the last name that suits
you. In my case, "Falkon."

After that, click the button that lit up: the top one of the group of three.
Here, you'll get to personalize your first character. The simplest thing listed
is at the top, the first name. Obviously, "Pyro" goes here for me.

Next, you need to enter your character's attributes.

+--------------+
|2a. Attributes|
+--------------+

The attributes are divided into five catagories: Neat, Outgoing, Active,
Playful, and Nice. You can assign up to 10 points to any attribute, but you
have a total limit of 25 points.

NEAT indicates how environmentally-conscious your sim is, and what the chance
is of it doing cleaning actions automatically. If it's set to max, then your
sim will always clear the table and flush the toilet when finished eating and
doing their business, respectively (at least, I HOPE it's respectively). A
minimum rating of zero will make your sim a complete slob who doesn't mind
being in its own filth. This rating has an indirect effect on the Room bar; see
Mood Bars their own section for details.

OUTGOING indicates how well your sim gets to know others. If set to 10, it
makes friends easily; if set to 0, it makes friends as easily as a corpse. This
rating has an indirect effect on the Social bar.

ACTIVE indicates how much your sim likes to move around. A high rating means
that it would rather play basketball, for example, than watch TV. A low rating
means just the opposite. Also, the rating directly affects how long it takes
for that sim to get up after it wakes up. A sim with an ACTIVE rating of 10
will literally leap out of bed. A sim with a zero rating will take one full
game hour to get out of bed once it wakes up.

PLAYFUL indicates how much your sim prefers games over serious things. This,
combined with ACTIVE, gives you an idea of what your sim wants to do with
itself to get its Fun mood up. Again, check out the Mood Meter section for
details.

NICE indicates just how well your sim gets along with others. This, combined
with OUTGOING, affects the way your sim makes friends.

Once you have your attributes set, check out the series of seven buttons to the
right. The top two affect whether the sim is a child or an adult. Families
should have at least one adult, since children can't get jobs to earn money.
Below that are three buttons that change your sim's skin tone from light to
medium to dark. The bottom two set its gender; the one on the left is for
males, the one to the right is for females.

Once you have your sim's age, skin tone, and gender set, take a look at the
arrows that flank your sim's head and body. Using those, you can scroll through
the available choices of heads and clothes (called skins). Don't worry so much
about the clothes since those can be changed in-game, but once you choose a
head, it's locked in for eternity.

The attributes are almost permanent once you set them, so make sure you think
carefully before you confirm your choice.

At the bottom of this screen is a section where you can write a bio. It's
totally optional, but I think it's fun to give my sims backstories.

To confirm your choices, click the Done button. You'll be taken back to the
family screen where you entered the last name. You can add up to seven more
family members for a total of eight, but you have to be careful. The more
people you have, the faster you earn money, but the more maintenance you pay.
If this is your first family, I'd stick with no more than two.

For my strategy (outlined in a later section), I use three adults: Pyro,
Stephanie, and Pud.

In the bios, I declare Pyro and Stephanie to be married, and Pud is Pyro's
brother. Now, there is no "official" way to set any relationship; I could
consider the Falkons to all be siblings if I wanted, or all be married to each
other, or both. Of course, since I'm normal, I'm just sticking with a simple
marriage with a tag-along brother.

If you make a mistake on a family member, you can click that sim, then the
bottom button of the Create Family screen to edit him or her. If things go
horribly wrong, you can click the sim, then the middle button to end its life
before it even begins. Once you're satisfied with your family, click the done
button on the Create Family screen, but remember that you can never come back
to the Create Family screen again to edit anyone.

 

+--------------------------------------+
|+------------------------------------+|
||3. BUYING A LOT AND BUILDING A HOUSE||
|+------------------------------------+|
+--------------------------------------+

On the family select screen, click the family you just made, then the button in
the bottom-right (a family with an arrow pointing to a house). You'll be kicked
back to the neighborhood screen where you can select which lot you want to buy.
You have to buy a lot that does not have a family already there, but you CAN
buy one if it already contains a house. However, I like building houses (and
it's cheaper that way than buying a huge house off the bat). The more people
that are in your sim family, the less expensive the lot you should buy. It's up
to you, of course, but there's no reason to make this too hard if it's your
first time.

If the lot you want is taken by a family and/or a house, you can evict the
family and/or bulldoze the house to clear the lot. To do so, click the button
at the top of the screen with a bulldozer. Your cursor will change; click the
lot you wish to clear after that. If there's a family there, you'll be asked if
you want to evict them. Doing so sells all of their house objects (everything
but walls, carpets, and wallpaper), then throws them and their money into the
barracks. Either way, you'll then be asked to bulldoze the house. If you agree,
the lot is slaughtered. Trees and hills stay as they were, but the walls,
carpets, and roofs will be no more.

Make sure your family is selected, then click the lot you wish to move into.
All families start with $20,000 (simoleans), and once you buy the lot, the cost
is automatically deducted from your account.

+--------------+
|3a. Build Mode|
+--------------+

After the game loads, your family will be standing near its mailbox beside the
empty lot. There's a whole mess of buttons here, but this section of my FAQ
covers building the house, so let's worry about only the bare essentials for
now. Off the bat, click the small button that's fifth from the left; it has
three dots horizontally through the middle of it. That's the option gump, and
what you need to click is the disk icon in the top-left corner of the group of
six. That's how you save the game, and I seriously suggest you save it
immediately. If something goes horribly wrong during the construction of the
building, you can always load and not have too many problems.

Once it's saved, click the third button from the left of the main five; it
looks like a house. That takes you to Build Mode, the place you go to construct
your house.

The two buttons on the far left of the gump that just appeared are Undo and
Redo. Let's ignore those for now, since you haven't done anything yet. The
first tool for house construction is the wall tool, which is located in the top
row, third from the left. Click that, and you'll get a long list of choices for
everything relating to walls. The wall itself is the very first item, and it
costs $70 per section, which can add up to a crapload of money.

To create a wall, simply click-and-drag across the landscape wherever you want
the wall. To quickly make a room, you can hold SHIFT as you drag, and it will
make a rectangle for you. To undo a mistake, either click the undo button
(which also returns all your money), or hold CONTROL and click-drag (which only
returns half the wall cost).

You can't blow your remaining money on your house alone since you'll need to
end up buying things like toilets and refrigerators, so try to cut corners
whenever you can. The bathroom is really the only room you need to keep
isolated; you can combine the living and bed rooms for now.

Your rooms should not be more than 5 tiles by 5 tiles, but that doesn't mean
you can't have an "invisible" wall. Check out this crappy ASCII art to see what
I mean...

+-----+-----+
| | |
| | |
| KIT | LVR |
| | |
| | |
+-----+-----+

Now, this is two rooms that are 5x5 each (count the dashes, not the actual
distance). The one marked KIT is the kitchen, and the one marked LVR is the
living room. This is a good starting setup, but it can be improved by one
little change...

+-----------+
| |
| |
| KIT LVR |
| |
| |
+-----------+

Now the wall that separated the two rooms is gone, saving you $350, which is
enough to buy a burglar alarm and a phone with enough left over for a meal. If
you absolutely must have that center wall, you can always add it later. This
early in the game though, every single simolean counts.

I recommend that you make the bathroom no more than 3x4, and the bedroom no
larger than the standard 5x5. Again, this is ALL temporary; you can extend and
expand to your heart's content once you have the money.

To help you with the view, check out the buttons that are just above the clock
on the left side. Those are the various wall views you can use. From left to
right: first story / second story, roof view, walls up, walls cutaway, and
walls down. Don't worry about the story selection since you haven't even built
the ground floor yet. While building walls, I just leave the walls down. It
lets you see your design clearly without having to rotate the view or anything
like that.

If you do want to rotate or zoom the view, you can use the buttons in the
bottom left: the two curved arrows, and the plus and minus arrows. Play around
with the views as much as you want; time is frozen in Build Mode.

You now need doors for house. The tool for this looks amazingly like a door;
just click it and you'll get a list of door styles. The doorless frame for $150
is perhaps the most functional of them all, since your sims don't have to waste
time opening doors all day. Of course, I always put closed doors around the
bathroom; even though it makes no difference in practice, I don't think my sims
would appreciate being spied on during their moment of privacy.

Anyway, set up your doors however you see fit. Make sure you don't forget to
get a door on every room, but remember that you don't have to connect *every*
room to *every other* room. Also make sure you put a door on an exterior wall;
that will be your front door. Any room will do, but the bathroom is not
recommended unless you want all your visitors to get peeks of sims in showers.
(Note to self: make an all female sim family and test out this method of door
placement.)

You can now add windows, wallpaper (which covers both interior and external
walls), and flooring, but I recommend against all of it for now. However, I'll
tell you how to mess with it, whether you're doing it now or later.

Windows are added like doors and can even go on interior walls, although I fail
to see why you would want to do that. The smaller the room is, the less windows
it needs to be fully lit. A 5x5 room only needs two windows max.

By the way, some doors have windows in them and do add to the light in a room.
They tend to be more expensive, but it's your choice.

Carpet can be chosen by clicking the icon that's second to the left of the
bottom row, below the water drop. After selecting the flooring patern you want,
you can click-drag an area that you want to cover, or hold SHIFT then click,
which fills the whole room. Wallpaper works the same way; just click the icon
of a paintbrush to get started. You can remove any flooring or wallpaper by
CTRL-clicking, or even SHIFT-CTRL-clicking, which will remove everything from
that whole room.

Finally, you need customize the roof on your house. Simply click the icon that
looks like a roof, and you can choose the pitch and style of the roof. You
don't have too many choices, but you should have plenty to work with.

I'll describe the other tools in Build Mode to you here...

The far left icon of the top row is the landscaping tool. With this, you can
raise, lower, or level the land; you can also grow or shrink grass, making your
lawn a lush green or a dusty brown.

Beside that is the water tool. You can add a pool with a diving board and
ladder with three of the tools. The fourth tool, big water drop, lets you
manually change tiles to little pools of water. In theory, you could make a
river, pond, or even a moat. I haven't used it much myself, but experiment to
heck and back.

Next to the water tool is the wall selection. What I didn't mention above is
that you can select fences and pillars here as well as the basic wall. Take a
look at the selection, but you probably don't want to buy any of it this early.

On the other side of the paintbrush is the staircase button. You can eventually
add a second story to your house, but that's insanely unimportant at the
moment. Keep it in mind in case you want to expand eventually.

The last icon of the top row is the fireplace tool. Again, those are so
stupid-expensive that you don't need to deal with it yet.

Now, the bottom row. The left-most icon is the plant tool. You can buy flowers,
trees, and shrubs to spruce up your lawn. This is another luxury you can deal
with once you're rich.

You know what the flooring, door, window, and roof tools do. The last one in
that row is the hand tool. You can use that to move objects, flowers, shrubs,
trees, fences, and a whole bunch of other stuff around. It's rather pointless
since your house is empty at the moment, but it's there whenever you need it.

+------------+
|3b. Buy Mode|
+------------+

The button to the left of the Build Mode button, the one with a chair and lamp
on it, takes you to Buy Mode. Here, you're greeted with a list of catagories of
Stuff To Buy. Watch your money, but don't neglect the basics.

You can use the eight buttons in the Buy Mode gump to select what precisely you
want to buy. You have chairs and beds, tables and other surfaces, decorations,
and electronics in the top row. In the bottom row are appliances, everything
relating to plumbing, lamps of all flavors, and miscellaneous items.

There's a secondary way you can sort the list. If you click the Buy Mode button
again, those eight catagories will switch to a room sort. Then, you can click
the appropriate button for the room you want to furnish, and go from there.
They are: living room, dining room, bedroom, and study on the top row. Kitchen,
bathroom, outside, and miscellaneous are across the bottom row.

Once you click any sort, be it a room or catagory, you get a subsort to further
your search. If you just want to browse a catagory, click the infinity symbol
in any subsort to view all the items of that catagory or room (this is the only
way to find some items).

If you click-and-hold on any item, a short description and larger picture will
come up. The price is shown along with any mood or skills it will raise. I'll
get more into the moods in the next section, and skills after that. If a
description of an item includes the line "Group Activity," it means that at
least two sims can use the item simultaneously, generally increasing the Social
meter as well as whatever else it normally increases. Some descriptions may
include "Can only be used by an adult" or "Can only be used by a child," both
of which are self-explanatory.

I won't go into details of why until the next section, but for now you're going
to need the essentials of living. Those are: a fridge, a toilet, a shower, a
bed, some form of entertainment, a chair, a phone, a burglar alarm, and a
bookcase. Most of these are obvious where to find them.

The entertainment form I recommend is a TV, although if none of your sims are
playful, you may want to just use the bookcase as your entertainment source (it
can double as such). The bookcase is listed under miscellaneous objects or the
study, depending whether you're looking at the catagory or room sort.

Make sure you put the burglar alarm outside near your front door, and place a
phone in any room but the bedroom. The phone rings in the middle of the night
often, and your sims hate waking up before they're supposed to.

You should still have the money to afford two of the cheapest counters, the
cheapest oven, and the only food processor. They will be worth their weight in
gold, or at least simoleons.

If you didn't go nuts in Build Mode, you probably have plenty of money of left
over to get a few more items that will seriously help your first few game days.
First and easiest is a nice couch. It can double as a bed if need be, so take a
look. You could also get a cheap table, put a few chairs around it, and shove
it all in the kitchen as a temporary dining room.

The last general tip I have for Build Mode is that just because you CAN buy
something doesn't mean you SHOULD buy something. Just because you have the
money to buy the $7000 DJ spintable doesn't mean that it'll help your sims' fun
ratings any more than that plasma TV, which is half the price.

Finally, if you ever want to sell an item, simply click on it while in Buy Mode
(or use the hand tool in Build Mode) to pick it up, then hit your DELETE key.
You'll get some of the money back; all of it if less than one day passed since
you bought it. To see one way you can use that to your advantage, head to the
Money Strategy section.

Though you can arrange anything in any order, there's one specific piece of
advice I must give. Check the Mood section for details.

+--------------------+
|3c. The Options Gump|
+--------------------+

Before we get into the game, you may want to save (or not, if you think all
hell is going to break loose and you regret your construction decisions). I'll
take a few lines here to explain all the other options.

Across the top row are Save, Neighborhood Screen, and Quit. The first saves
your game instantly without a prompt. The second sends you back to the
neighborhood screen after prompting you to save if you hadn't recently. The
last will send you back to Windows, also after a save prompt.

The bottom three allow you to tinker with the video, audio, and game settings.
The left icon of the bottom row gives you the display settings. You can change
the level of detail of the terrain and/or characters, or toggle graphic
options. All four graphic options, if checked, make the game prettier, but take
a bit more processor power (not an issue if you're using a GHz processor with
over 128 MB RAM). All of these are explained simply by click the words of what
you want described, so I'm not going to waste your time by writing them here.

The button in center of the bottom row adjusts the volumes for sound, music,
and voices. The sound FX is all the sounds made from objects, including the TV.
The music setting affects songs from the audio objects like radios, and it
affects the volume of the fanfare that's played whenever your sims do something
special. VOX is the measure of the sims' voices when they interact with each
other.

The last button is the game options. There are eight there, and I'll explain
them.

AUTO-CENTERING automatically brings the view to an event. If this is your first
time, you may want to keep it on so you don't miss when something unusual
happens.

FREE WILL gives your sims the ability to act on their own, though their actions
will be heavily weighed by their personality (for example, a sim with a Neat
rating of zero will never take a shower). If you enact this, you can give your
sims commands as usual, and your commands will always take precedence over
anything they come up with on their own.

EDGE SCROLLING allows you to move the view simply by laying the cursor against
the edge of the screen. With this unchecked, you can only move the view by
right-click dragging.

SIM IN BACKGROUND allows the game to run if you task switch (ALT-TAB) out of
the game. With it unchecked, the game will pause if you task switch.

QUICK TIPS affect whether little hints will appear in the upper-right corner of
the screen. If this is enabled, occasionally a box with a question mark will
appear, and you can click that to get a bit more information. This is always
enabled in the downtown area.

AUTO SNAPSHOT lets the game take a picture for you whenever an event occurs. To
take a picture manually, click the button that looks like a camera, then choose
the size and quality of your shot. A box will appear in the game view, and
another click will capture the scene for all of time.

LIVE PIP makes the picture-in-picture (shown during some events) show what's
happening in real-time. This SERIOUSLY drains processor power, and I recommend
you leave it unchecked. The PIP will appear anyway, but it will be a still
picture, not a moving camera.

EXPORT HTML forces the game to create webpages of your families when you save.
This has serious negative impacts on save times, so I leave it unchecked.
There's a global command on the neighborhood screen that makes webpages for all
the families, and I use that whenever I decide to make webpages.

 

+----------------------------+
|+--------------------------+|
||4. TAKING CARE OF YOURSELF||
|+--------------------------+|
+----------------------------+

When your house is built and the objects inside it are bought, click the button
on the far left, the one that shows two people standing beside each other. This
activates Live Mode, the meat and potatoes of the game. If your sims are on
Free Will, they'll probably poke around and check out what you bought, either
applauding or booing your taste.

On the bottom of the screen are portraits of each sim in your family, along
with seven buttons to the right of them. I'll describe each one in a moment,
but right now, let me teach you how to care for your sims.

Firstly, you can only have one sim active at once. Its portrait will have a
blue border around it, and a big colored crystal will appear over its head. To
change the active sim, you can either click on the portrait of the one you want
to control, right-click the sim itself, or hit the space bar. The change
happens instantly.

Once you have a sim under your control, you can order it to interact with
anything you have. Simply click an object, and a list of actions will pop up.
Some objects only have a few actions, some have many. Explore; I'm not going to
ruin the game by going over every little item. Once you give a command, a
picture representing the command will appear in the upper-left corner of the
screen. You can cancel the action before it's completed by clicking that icon.
Only nine actions can be queued at once.

The only thing that needs a special explaination is the fridge. If a sim clicks
a fridge, it can either have a snack, make a quick meal, make a normal meal, or
serve a meal. If you select the snack, the sim will just grab a bag of chips
out of the fridge for $5. If you ask it to make a meal or quick meal, it will
go through the cooking process I talk about in 4a, with one minor note. If you
picked the quick meal, it will skip the process or chop step. This is less
filling, but takes less time. Either way, $10 will be taken from your account.
If you choose to serve a meal, the sim will make a plate of food that has six
servings, all for a measly $20. Get real intimate with that command, you'll be
using a lot.

It's time to start covering those buttons to the right of your sims' portraits.
The one that's probably already open is the mood button. If it's not, click it;
it's the one with the happy and sad masks.

Above and below that button is a graph. The graph shows the overall mood of
your sim, based on the weighted average of its eight individual moods. The
overall mood is graded positively and negatively by 5 levels, plus the neutral
mood. The color of the crystal above the active sim's head tells what mood it's
in; a green crystal is a happy mood, and the deeper the green, the happier the
mood. If the crystal is red, the sim is ticked off or depressed, and a blood
red crystal is just a more intense version.

I'll deal with the eight individual moods in a second, since they require their
own section. Let's take a look at the other buttons first.

The top button on the left, the one that looks like a word balloon, leads to
your sim's interests. This button is new to the series starting with Hot Date.
These are randomly generated, I believe. Poke around there for a moment if you
want. It shows what a sim likes and dislikes talking about, and it can have
serious impacts on friends. I talk more about interests later.

Below that is the personality button. Here, you can see what astrological sign
your sim is, along with its attributes that you set in the Create Sim screen.

The bottom-left button is the inventory screen, also new starting with Hot
Date. If your sim is carrying any items, they will appear here.

The top-right button opens the relationship meters, which shows how well your
sim is getting along with others that it has met. Until Hot Date, there was
only one meter, but now there are two. The upper meter indicates the daily
relationship, while the lower one represents the lifetime relationship. I deal
with those in more detail in the love section, too.

The button in the right-center is the job button. There you can see what, if
any, job you sim has, what its salary is, and what its skills are. Take a look
at cooking. The higher that is, the more filling their meals are. Sims
shouldn't cook unless they have at least one point in cooking, or they may end
up setting the kitchen on fire. To raise any of those skills, your sim needs to
perform a specific action. For cooking, just have one read a book. Click your
bookcase, then click "study cooking." Your sim will grab the book and take the
nearest seat, studying its heart out. The blue progress bar above its head will
fill, and when it fills completely, you'll get a message that your sim gained a
point in that skill. I'll get into skills in more detail in a later section.

The last button, the one that looks like a house, gives you a rating on your
happy home. It's probably kinda low for now, but remember that you didn't have
too much money to deal with. That will change soon, I promise.

Okay, now it's time for the mood meters. Remember I told you that you'll need
certain objects as essential for living? This is why. I'll describe each meter
here, what it means, and how it's weighed in the overall mood. This is the
heart and soul of the game. Click back over to the mood meters to follow along
as you check out my next section.

If a sim has one particular mood extremely low, it may look at the camera
(i.e., you the player) and scream bloody murder with an accompying picture to
tell you what mood is suffering. You need to fix that quickly.

All eight moods are weighted, then averaged, and that becomes your sim's
overall mood. Its mood, among other things, severely affects what options pass
or fail when they do an action to another sim. I cover that in the Sim Love
section.

+----------+
|4a. Hunger|
+----------+

This is arguably the most important meter of all eight. This obviously is how
badly your sim needs food. No sim likes being hungry. Make sure you feed them
often, or they could die of starvation. When the bar is low, let them eat.

To make a sim eat, make the sim that's hungry the active sim, then click a
fridge. For now, choose "Have Meal" or "Serve Meal," so you can see the whole
cooking process. Sims start their cooking at a fridge by getting the
ingredients. It will then proceed to chop up the veggies if there's an empty
counter, or use a food processor if there's one present. Then it will move to
the microwave or oven, depending on which deals with hunger better, if one is
available. Once the food is done cooking, if it's a family meal, the sim will
put it on an available surface, preferring counters. If it's just a meal for
one, the sim will take it to a table if one is available, sit down, and eat.

Since you know this ahead of time, you can save your sims' time and effort by
building your kitchen and dining room in a logical order. Look at this
flowchart...

FRIDGE ----- COUNTER - OVEN ----- COUNTER --- SERVED FOOD
\ X /
-- PROCESSOR - MICROWAVE-

So, the logical order to arrange your kitchen is thus...

+--------+ +-----------+ +------+ +---------+
| | | COUNTER | | | | EMPTY |
| FRIDGE | | WITH | | OVEN | | COUNTER |
| | | PROCESSOR | | | | |
+--------+ +-----------+ +------+ +---------+

Then you can position a table and chair strategically on the other side of the
empty counter. Efficency is the idea.

By the way, starting with the Unleashed expansion, you can actually grow your
own food! More on that in the Farming subsection of the Money section.

+-----------+
|4b. Comfort|
+-----------+

This is how much sims are happy with their comfort, obviously. A sim that is
standing will constantly lose comfort, although not as severely as a sim that's
working out or swimming. Generally, this is weighed pretty heavily, although
not as much as hunger.

Comfort is rather easy to raise, espeically when you consider that sims do a
lot of things sitting down. Watching TV, for example, will help comfort as well
as raising the Fun meter. You have to be wary though; sometimes, if their path
is blocked, they may watch TV or eat while standing, which is perfectly capable
to be done, but it kills the Comfort meter. Some actions, such as playing chess
or playing on a Computer, cannot be done at all while standing.

So basically, while a low Comfort meter is bad, it's hardly anything to panic
about. If push comes to shove, just click a chair or couch and select "Sit." If
another sim sitting at the same time, the two will talk idly, which can bring
up the Social meter in the process as well.

+-----------+
|4c. Hygiene|
+-----------+

This is how clean the sim feels, and it's also the first one that is weighed by
the individual sim. Sims that are neat are more interested in hygiene than slob
sims are. No sim likes to be around a stinky sim, though, and if your hygiene
is too low, it could affect whether others become friends or more. Would YOU
like to kiss someone who hadn't washed their face in over a week?

Hygiene gets directly healed via bathtubs and showers. Hot tubs do the job too,
but not as well. Sims typically don't have a problem stripping down and taking
a shower if someone's in the bathroom, oddly enough. I guess the door is so
well blurred that you can't see anything once you're inside.

Anyway, if you don't have a maid, be sure to clean your shower or tub often. If
you don't, Hygiene won't go up as fast as it could; and besides, that dirt ring
looks nasty.

+-----------+
|4d. Bladder|
+-----------+

This is how much sims feel the need to visit their old friend John. Take care
of this one fast if it gets low, because if it drops to zero, the sim will wet
itself. That will cut hygiene to zero and make the sim terribly embarrassed,
possibly forcing bad relationships. No sim likes needing to do its business,
but this mood is not weighed very heavily.

If the meter drops rather low, and then you tell your sim to get to the
bathroom, he'll RUN for it. Although it's certainly not something you exactly
want to intentionally set up, it is pretty cool to see sims tearing through the
house.

Sims will often times stop whatever they're doing if they need to go. They can
wake up in the middle of the night or stop eating before their plate is clean
if they get the urge. There are two solutions here. You can take care of the
problem when it happens, then send them back to bed or their meal. The other,
more logical solution is to send them to the bathroom BEFORE they take the
action. That prevents any and all bladder problems, so you'll be fine.

Oh, one more thing. If a sim is rather close to having an exploding bladder,
there's an action another sim can do to intentionally make it wet itself. If
two sims are close in relationships, have the one who does not have the empty
Bladder meter the active sim. Then, click the sim who does need to go the
bathroom and select the "Tickle > Extreme" action. Your active sim will do some
serious tickling, enough to make the target wet itself. Ah, gotta love social
interactions.

+----------+
|4e. Energy|
+----------+

This tells how long the sim can go before it collapses (literally). Every
waking moment expends energy (unless the sim is drinking coffee), and you need
to send it to bed before it gets too late. Early to bed, early to rise makes a
sim healthy, wealthy, and wise... and at least still employed in the morning.

I believe that sims with a high active rating can go longer than sims with a
low active rating, but I'm not entirely sure. I do know that it takes far
shorter time for an active sim to actually get moving in the morning. If a sim
has 10 Active, then they'll literally hop out of bed, bright-eyed and
bushy-tailed (whatever THAT means). A sim with zero Active will take a full 30
minutes to get the cobwebs out of their head.

Adult sims are rather light sleepers. The slightest sound will keep them awake,
so make sure all radios, TVs, and Computers are shut off if they're in the same
room. Lights don't bother them, but certain sounds that other sims make might.
For example, if there is a weight set in a bedroom, and one sim is sleeping,
it'll be woken by the sound of another sim working out. Also, they'll wake up
to the phone, and since most nighttime calls are prank callers, keep phones out
of the bedroom. Remember, as long as the object is in another room, it won't
matter in the slightest.

Kid sims are far different. They can be woken from the alarm clock, but other
sounds won't bother them. That means you can shove a kid in the living room
with your speakers blaring and phones ringing, but they won't stir a bit. This
more or less ensures that they'll have max energy when the time comes for
school.

Once a sim goes to sleep, assuming there's no offending noise in the room, it
can only be woken a few ways. First of all, a sim will wake up if its bladder
meter gets extremely empty. You'll have about 10 game minutes to get a sim to
the bathroom before it wets itself. The second way it will wake up is to alarm
clocks. If an alarm is set, it will ring two hours before the carpool arrives.
Third, sims will (or should) wake up automatically when the sun rises at 6 AM.
It's not guaranteed, and sometimes you make have to wake a sim up manually.

As long as the Energy meter is not full, a sim will be sleeping. If it is woken
up before its Energy tops out, it will throw a fit for about 30 minutes for
sleep deprivation.

If the sun is out (anytime from 6 AM to 6 PM), the sim will stop sleeping if
its energy tops out. However, if it's nighttime, it will keep on sleeping
anyway until the sun does rise, or until you give it another command. If time
isn't a factor, then you can simply order a sim to go to sleep, and issue
another order directly afterwards. The sim will sleep, and the moment its
Energy tops off, it will wake up and take the next action you gave it.

There is only one bed that has any special commands. That's the heart-shaped
love bed, which gives three additional options besides Sleep: those are
"Vibrate," "Relax," and "Play in Bed." If a sim elects to Vibrate, he or she
will pay about $20, then get nekkid and go under the sheets. This raises
Comfort through the roof, though Energy won't go up. Relaxing is a free, but
weaker, version of Vibrate in practice.

If a sim is either Vibrating or Relaxing, another sim can elect to Play in Bed
with the one already there. The second sim will approach, get naked, and start
a healty match of sheet-wrestling. This brings Comfort and Social way up, and
Energy and Hygiene way down. Once they finish, they'll hop out of bed and react
to each other depending on how good the whole thing was. Stephanie has slapped
Pyro before, evidentally because he used his hands a little too roughly. Pyro
has laughed in Stephanie's face before, also. Most of the time, Pyro will
whisper something to Stephanie, who starts giggling. You may see other
reactions as well.

Oh, and kids can come about from Playing. It's not guaranteed, but there's
certainly a chance.

By the way, the Sleep option for beds will not appear unless the active sim has
about 85% of its Energy meter. Any higher, and the option simply won't be there
at all.

+-------+
|4f. Fun|
+-------+

No sim likes being bored, but sims have different things they like doing. Sims
with low playful ratings prefer reading books, and sims with high playful
ratings like watching TV. The playful and active ratings combine for this one,
too; if a sim has high active and playful ratings, it prefers basketball or
vitrual gaming. If it has low active but high playful ratings, watching the
latest episode of Malcom in the Middle or playing The Sims on its Computer is
what it likes more.

There are many actions that can boost Fun. Sims can even boost each other's Fun
by tickling or telling jokes. Playing in Bed or Playing in hot tubs will boost
fun also (everyone likes playing like that, right?).

If you decide to tell your sim to watch to TV or play on the Computer to get
the Fun meter up, you'll need to take precautions. See, for some reason, if you
give them more than one command, they'll drop the TV or Computer to do whatever
you ordered after it. So, make sure that playing on the Computer or watching TV
is the LAST command on the action list.

Sims prefer to watch TV while sitting down. Should a chair or couch be
provided, they'll sit it in automatically. They'll try to pick the most
comfortable one, but they'll even settle on standing if there's nothing
available (although that kills Comfort). Once a sim tops off its Fun meter, it
will stop whatever it's doing.

However, if a sim is having Fun but doing something else in the process, it may
continue the action anyway. For example, if it's playing chess, it won't stop
even after the Fun meter tops off because it is still studying Logic at the
same time.

+----------+
|4g. Social|
+----------+

The sim's need to talk. This is HEAVILY weighed for all sims; a sim that has
zero Social but 100 everything else will probably have a mood of +1 or +2 max.
The balance of the weight comes in with the speed of the bar's decline. A sim
with a high outgoing rating will feel the need to be social FAR more than a sim
with no outgoing ratings, but will fill the meter a bit quicker than a shy sim.

The Social meter is not entirely in scale to the relationship meters. So, just
because you raise the relationship by 50 points doesn't mean that the Social
meter increases by 50%. Talking, for example, only mildly helps the Social
meter, even if two sims talk for hours. However, a few kisses, especially the
passionate kind, will kick the Social meter into overdrive. If you can't find
any other sims to talk with (whether it's too late or the neighborhood is too
empty), you can play with a pet you own to bring the meter up.

Because the Social meter is independent of the relationship meters, it won't
matter who is doing what as far as the Social meter goes. So, if Pyro is
talking to Stephanie, the Social meter will go up the same as if he's talking
to Pud, no matter what the relationship numbers say.

The Social meter can also be brought down by choosing negative interactions,
such as Fight and Insult. Still, some sims get a kick out of being insulted for
some reason; it has to do with their level of Nice that you assigned in the
Create Sim screen. The nicer a person is, the more of a chance they'll do
positive actions, and the less of a chance they'll be Socially better by doing
negative ones. Still, every neighborhood has a bitch that you just want to beat
the crap out of, and variety in sims is the key to doing very well in the game.

+--------+
|4h. Room|
+--------+

This is the sim's opinion of the room it's currently in, or how much it likes
the yard if it's outside. All sims like large rooms and lit rooms, but neat
sims dislike dirty dishes and pee puddles. Slobby sims are less picky, but even
they get tired of the flies once in awhile. Decorations boost this meter
considerably, but try to buy better windows or more lamps before you blow
thousands on a statue or painting.

Lights are optional, and they don't seem to improve room ratings too much. I
had a room that was 5x30, and any sim in it had a full Room meter, even though
it was unlighted.

You see, sims like light, but they like space more. They would rather be in a
dark room the size of a small country than a small bathroom with a billion
lights. Sims are weird like that. They also prefer diagonal walls over normal
ones, so making an octognal room will significantly help.

Don't do this...

+------------------------------+
| |
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| |
| |
+------------------------------+

Do this...

--------------------------
/ \
/ \
/ \
| |
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\ /
\ /
\ /
--------------------------

Not only does this save money, but room scores will get better. You can also
get super-fancy, though it's more expensive...

---------------------------
/ \
/ \
/ |
| |
| /
| /
| /-------
| |
| |
| |
| \-------
| \
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\ |
\ /
\ /
---------------------------

Eventually, you'll want lights, but if for no other reason than to make the
room a bit more realistic. (In real life, I wouldn't want to live in a dark
house, and I'm pretty sure you wouldn't either.)

When you buy lights, think about the room you're buying the lamp for. That
should help lead to your decision about just what lamp to buy at all.

If you're buying a lamp for the bathroom, and it's a tiny bathroom, you don't
need any huge expensive lamp. Since floor lamps would get too much in the way,
you would want to go with a wall lamp or hanging lamp. Hanging lamps even have
life-long light bulbs, so you wouldn't endanger your sim's life when it's time
to change bulbs and there's water on the floor.

The cheapest hanging lamp, the red one that looks like it belongs in a bar,
would serve better than anything else. Just one could easily light a 3x3
bathroom, and two could cover a 3x4 or 4x4 bathroom.

Also, make sure you know how much light is being generated. Most lamps send
light one or two tile(s) in every direction. If you space your lamps
accordingly, you can cover a whole room while not spending too much on extra
lamps.

You could also take the completely opposite route I just described and coat the
walls with wall lights. I noticed that if there are enough lamps in one room,
every tile will be lit no matter how far away the lamps are. You could, say,
put one wall lamp on every wall section, and whatever room you do that to will
be bright all night. Of course, doing so prevents windows, but lights light up
during the day as well as the night.

Once you have a bunch of money, you should start buying decorative things for
the rooms. Certain things, like the more expensive chess set, have practical
uses as well as boosting Room scores. Upgrading furniture and fireplaces will
help too. Statues and paintings actually appreciate in value, so you can buy
one and sell it a few days later for a profit. Coat the walls liberally with
paintings either way: your sims' Room meters will go through the roof.

Outside, coat the yard with plants. Pink flamingos, while pretty damn ugly,
still boost the yard score significantly. The only thing you need to avoid is
the Topiaries. For some reason, sims run into them, and can't figure out how to
go AROUND them, so they just give up whatever their current task is. Must be a
fault in the object code, but whatever the cause is, don't build any. There are
plenty of other flowers you can plop down that won't have the same problem.

 

+--------------------------+
|+------------------------+|
||5. TAKING CARE OF OTHERS||
|+------------------------+|
+--------------------------+

Let's face it: just like real life, one person alone cannot do everything.
Maybe a particular sim stayed up too late and doesn't have time to cook the
next morning.

This is where a second sim in the family is very helpful. A second sim can pick
up the slack for another. Some methods could be obvious; one sim could excell
in the cooking skill and be the only one who prepares meals, for example.

Sims work best as a team. If any one sim is doing nothing, probably the rest of
its family is suffering or could at least better off. More on this in my
strategy section.

Your sim can interact with other sims whenever you wish it to. With a sim
active, simply click any other sim and you'll get a list of actions you can
perform. I talk more about that in the Sim Love section.

 

+----------+
|+--------+|
||6. MONEY||
|+--------+|
+----------+

It's all about the Benja-sims. Now that your family is settled in its house,
you need to turn to earning money, since bills arrive at your house every 3
days. There's a million ways to make money.

+--------+
|6a. Jobs|
+--------+

The easiest way to earn money is to have your adult sims get jobs, because the
jobs pay daily. Polish up those resumes, it's time to start working!

At 9 AM every morning, the paper is delivered to your front lawn, near your
mailbox. You can check that to see what jobs are being offered, along with
their salary. For the first day, take whatever job is offered; "Beggars can't
be choosers," as the saying goes.

You can also get a job by using a Computer, but you may not be able to afford
it unless you "cheat the system" a bit. Check the short-strategy subsection.

Once you take a job, your mission is to get promoted to the next level. There
are 20 career paths, each with 10 levels. You begin every path on the lowest
rung, with one situational exception, which I'll explain in a moment.
Promotions will happen automatically, and you will be informed of them once the
sim who got promoted comes home. You'll get the next level's pay, along with a
one-time bonus that is twice as much.

For example, if a sim in the X-treme Career is at level 2 and gets promoted,
he'll bring home the new salary of level 3 ($325), plus twice as much for a
bonus ($650), for a total of $975. Generally, you would want to use the extra
cash to buy anything you may need to hone new required skills. Demotions can
happen too, if the sim keeps showing to work in a bad mood.

Carpools set to take you to work will arrive at a certain time. If two sims go
to work at the same time, they use the same carpool. Your sim has one hour to
start walking toward the car before it will drive away. Sims can miss work
without repercussion so long as they don't miss two days in a row. Two skip
days will result in being fired, but skipping one day, going the next day, and
skipping the third day is fine.

No matter what job you have, there's a chance a random event will happen (I
call them Chance Cards; what can I say? I love Monopoly.). Most are in the form
of skill bonuses, but many give you extra money. Chance Cards can be bad,
however; you may lose money or skill. The chance of a Chance Card appearing is
slim, but I don't know the exact percentage.

The most lucrative one I've found is in the Hacker career track. If you're
lucky, you'll end up getting a boost of a whopping $30000. Yes, thirty THOUSAND
simoleans. That's more than enough to remodel your house, including buying
carpet, wallpaper, windows (in any style), doors (in any style), and lamps (in
any style) for every room. And after that, you'll still have a great deal left
over. Personally, that's one of the main reasons I tend to favor the Hacker
career with Pyro.

If you stay at the top level of any job for awhile, you'll get a chance card
that will boot you to another career at about the 5th level. There's no real
positive of this, it's just a way for your games to be more random.

That's the only time you won't start at the bottom however. If you quit or get
fired, then take another job, you WILL start at the lowest level.

+-------------------+
|6b. Arts and Crafts|
+-------------------+

There are many things you can make to earn a living. If you decide to go into
business for yourself, you'll first need the creation tools.

One way is to be the Bill Gates of gnomes or gargoyles. Once you're in a lot,
grab a wood working table or stone working table through Buy Mode. You may want
to zone off a large room (about 8x8) as a garage or whatever for this. Put only
the table in it; if you insist on lights, use hanging lamps or wall lamps to
keep them out of the way.

Once your sim wakes up in the morning, take care of your moods, then
immediately get to work on making lawn gnomes or gargoyles! Keep working
through the day and night, only stop when your sim stops on his own.

Remember, you'll be gaining your Mechanical skill along the way, so every
moment that you're working, you're getting better at it. Eventually, when the
Bill Gates type get 10 Mechanical, he can make over 20 to 25 statues in one day
if he starts with a +4 mood. Each sells for $100, so you'll have a DAILY income
of at least $2000! Considering that you don't need friends or work hours for
this, it's a great, lazy way to earn money.

The only real problem with this is the Social meter. If your sim lives alone,
he can head downtown to meet someone, or just go adopt a pet. If he lives with
someone, his friend / brother / lover / whatever can compliment the Social
meter. Even if only your Bill Gates works, you'll earn PLENTY of money to make
a living.

Instead of gnomes, you could try to dabble in paint. Now, I don't think you can
earn a living JUST by painting, but Joseph Bull (JoeBull@HotPOP.com) says the
following...

####################################################

This is incorrect - it is possible. At 10 creativity points, paintings sell for
$166. A Sim can easily paint 2 pictures in a day, and just about manage 3. That
means a daily income of $332 - $498 - more than enough to survive. For example,
my sim, with 10 creativity, paints two pictures a day. This means a 3-day
income of $996. She gets bills of $498, spends $60 on food, and $20 on a
gardener. That leaves $418 to spend/save.

####################################################

If table working is more your thing, but you don't want to deal with gnomes or
gargoyles, you can make homemade preserves with the preserves table. They sell
for even less than paintings, but you may be able to make enough preserves per
day to
get a good living going.

Finally, you can try being an art dealer. Paintings and statues that you buy
through Buy Mode actually APPRECIATE value before depreciating. So, if you buy
a statue, you can leave it in your house for a few days, then sell it again to
make a profit. Of course, you'll need large capital to start in the first
place, so you may not want to try it at the beginning.

+-----------+
|6c. Farming|
+-----------+

If making stuff isn't to your liking, perhaps you'd prefer to actually grow
food to sell to other sims! Seeds are cheap, and if you have a huge farm going,
you could make tons of simoleans alone from the produce racket.

The first thing you need to do is buy the seeds. Go call a cab and head to Old
Town. There are a pair of lots that sell seeds, but for all your farming needs,
head to the left-most one (lot 61, called Custer's Market). You can even talk
to a resident farmer about things, but my FAQ is still just as valuable of
information as he is. ^_^

There are several carts where you can buy some veggies, but that's not the main
draw. Click the racks of seeds to check out the selection, and buy some once
you've decided on a product to peddle. Be warned: buying one pack gives you a
whopping five units of seeds, so unless you're a full-time farmer with huge
plots of land (which of course is a viable option), you should only need a few
packs or less, especially to start with. While you're here, you can also talk
to the farmer and buy some of his Plant Tonic for a small price. Although it
can boost your crops' sizes through the roof, it can also do... well, not so
cool things.

Now, gardens do not have electric fences around them, and they certainly don't
have fences under the ground. You and I may know that veggies are profitable
and healthy, but the problem is, the little bunnies running around SimCity know
it too, and you'll be competing with them for your edible money. So, while
you're running around Old Town, you'll want to invest in a guard. Head over to
a pet shop and grab a cat; although dogs make a little more sense about
guarding your stuff, it's the cats who are the pest hunters. Just pray that you
get an active cat; lazy bundles of fluff won't help you much.

Once you're done, head home with your purchases, then access Build Mode. Under
the plant tool is a little brown patch of dirt that's one tile wide and long.
Put that somewhere outside: that is your plot of soft, supple dirt, ready for
growing stuff. Once it's in place, grab the sim who's carrying the seeds, then
click the plot of ground and select what you want to plant. After that's done,
water the hell out of the thing. Every seed in your packet requires its own
little tile of land, so make sure you have a bunch of room if you're planning
on doing this all the time.

After a few days, the plants will be ready for harvesting, but you can keep
watering them anyway to try to make them a bit bigger. Once you've decided to
harvest them, they will be added to your inventory, and your plots of land will
be emptied, enabling you to replant some seeds.

After that, you have two options. You can elect to keep the crops by buying a
pantry from Buy Mode. It works a little like a fridge, but you can keep your
harvested food here for eating whenever you need to. You could also sell the
crops by Exploring Old Town and heading to a market. Just click a cart, then
choose Sell Veggies, and the farmer will buy your whole harvest.

The first time I tried this, I grew only four plots of crops and harvested them
as soon as possible (three days later), and I made $144. Now, that's not much,
I admit, but if you have a FULL-TIME farmer going, with HUGE plots of land for
farming, you'll be raking in the cash in no time. Just remember that the
beginning is a little shaky. But as all vets of Harvest Moon know, you can't
begin your farming career by growing enough tomatoes to supply all the pizza
restaurants in the world. Patience, my friend, patience.

By the way, a bunch of pests will try to eat your garden. If you have a cat, it
can do a good chunk of the work once you get its hunting skill up there. Also,
you can buy a scarecrow in the Decorative sort to help even more.

A reader provided a strategy for farming. Check it out in the Reader Strategy
subsection.

+--------------+
|6d. Hired Help|
+--------------+

Forgive me, but most the information here is written in other parts of the FAQ.
There's enough options now, however, to warrant giving it a subsection of its
own.

With the constant demand of your sims' time, there's rarely a chance to get
EVERY dish clean and EVERY plant watered. Luckily, help is only a phone call or
Buy Mode click away. Here I'll list every helper in the game, their price,
their pros, and their cons.

+----+
|Maid|
+----+

The maid is from the original game. She's the cheapest and pretty darn
effective even to this day. Call Maid Service by using a phone, and accept the
question. The maid will appear around 9 AM and will clean any dish, mop any
puddle, make any bed, spray any cockroach, and wipe every surface to make you
happy. She charges $10 per hour, and she leaves when there's nothing more to
do, or after she's worked about 10 hours.

+--------+
|Gardener|
+--------+

One thing the maid doesn't do is water plants, but that's what the gardener is
for. Accessed the same way as the maid, the gardener pops up every three days.
She also charges $10 per hour, but she'll stick around until her job is done.
Of course, if you have a huge garden, it may take her awhile. Not only will she
water outdoor and indoor plants, she'll replant anything dead. Of course,
unless you bought the plant long before you hired her, the gardener will
usually be able to prevent anything from dying.

+---------+
|Repairman|
+---------+

The maid and gardener are not very mechanically minded, so you can call the
overall-covered repairman if something goes wrong. He charges $50 per hour, but
he'll come over anytime and will be quick about fixing things.

+-----+
|Servo|
+-----+

Servo the robot was added with Livin' Large. He sits in his pod and waits for
you turn him on. When you do, he'll act as maid, gardener, AND repairman to get
everything on the lot running smooth. (Check out the hat changes!) His big
problem is his cost: it takes a whopping $15000 to get him in the house, and
his value contributes to the bills, making him by far the most expensive of the
group out of the box. Of course, considering the time and room scores he'll
save you, it may not be a bad idea to get him.

+-------+
|Caterer|
+-------+

The caterer, added with the House Party pack, relieves your woes for parties.
If you have buffet tables or punch bowls, he'll fill them for free. He'll take
away dirty dishes too. He may converse with guests, but he doesn't unless he
has nothing else to do. Besides, you can always order him to get back to work
if he gets on your nerves. He costs $350 per day, but he pays for himself if he
fills the buffet table four times.

+--------------+
|Animal Control|
+--------------+

If a skunk pops up on your property, you can call Animal Control. They'll
remove Pepe for only $20, but to be honest, as long as you leave the damn thing
alone, it'll go away after awhile on its own.

+------+
|Butler|
+------+

Added with the Superstar expansion pack, the butler can be hired via the phone.
He arrives at about 9 AM like the standard maid. He only cleans, but if he
knows there's flowers to water or appliances to fix, he'll call the appropriate
service for you. He'll even call the maids if the house is a real pig sty.
You'll still have to shell out the money for the others, but you won't have to
worry about the call. He'll also bring in the mail and paper, and he'll fill
pet dishes if you have them. Finally, he'll cook at meal times. He's not very
good at it, so the meals aren't that filling, but that's an hour he saves your
sims.

He's got a few additional perks in addition to his duties. He'll stay until
late night, whether he has anything to do or not. If he gets bored, he may get
into your liquor cabinet, but it doesn't cost you anything and it doesn't hurt
his performance. He'll also smack stalker if that afro freak gets onto your
property.

Now the catch: the butler costs a nasty $500 PER DAY. The amount doesn't add to
the bills, though. I think he's worth it.

Thanks to Matt Campbell (flamingblue8z@hotmail.com), I now know the butler also
takes care of babies too! Of course, remember that he leaves at night, and
babies will always wake up in the middle of the night too.

Raf (bighairycellar@mac.com) mentions that if you have a Butler AND a Servo,
then the butler will just turn on Servo when something needs cleaned up. He'll
still call the repairman if something needs to be repaired, however.

+---------+
|Bonehilda|
+---------+

With Makin' Magic installed, you can buy the Skeleton Closet item in the magic
subsort of the miscellaneous sort in Buy Mode. It costs you $3999, but you get
a great maid that strikes the balance between power and price. Bonehilda will
clean, and will bring in the mail. She won't cook or water anything, nor will
she piledrive the stalker. However, she is on call whenever you want; just
knock on the door. She's a great mid-step between the maid and Servo.

Not only all that, but Matt Campbell (flamingblue8z@hotmail.com) showed me that
Bonehilda takes care of babies too, AND repairs things! But, unlike the butler,
she never really LEAVES, so you can use her if there's an emergency in the
night or if a baby needs attention.

Personally, I think that Bonehilda is the best all-around. You may want to step
up to a Servo once you get ridiculous sums of money, though, if babies are not
going to be a part of that family. Alternately, you can have Bonehilda AND a
Butler, or the Butler and Servo. Any of those combinations will leave your sims
with plenty of free time.

+--------------------+
|6e. Other Money Tips|
+--------------------+

+----------------------------------+
|Damn It Feels Good to be a Gangsta|
+----------------------------------+

You could take a very underhanded and mean way to get large sums of money in
relatively short times. You'll be damaging the life of a poor, innocent sim,
but hey, you're mean like that.

Let's take two sims here for the example. We'll make Tony the gangster, and
Trixie the sim he steps on.

Okay, Tony moves into whatever lot he wants to, builds his house into whatever
he wants to, and generally starts his life like normal. Meanwhile, Trixie moves
into a lot, but she only buys a table and a phone to put on it.

Tony then goes through life, and soon enough, Trixie will come up to his house.
He flirts with her, making her fall in love with him. Eventually, they'll be
married, and all $20,000 of Trixie's money will transfer to Tony's account.
Then, Trixie will be in a, um, "horrible accident" and die.

Trixie may be dead, but Tony still has all her money. He's 20 grand richer
simply by marrying and killing an innocent sim. Weep not for Trixie; she'll get
even by having her ghost scare him. Then again, he could just sell the urn for
a quick fiver, and that will be the end of that. The cops will never touch him!
Ha ha ha ha!

+-------------+
|Renting Items|
+-------------+

I don't know what shop sims buy from, but it has the greatest return policy
I've ever heard of. Whatever you buy, if you return it the same day, you get
all your money back no matter how much you used it.

Now, notice I said that you need to return the SAME DAY, not "within 24 hours."
If you buy the item at 11:59 PM, then you have one minute before it loses its
full value. If you plan on "renting" an item like this, be sure to do so no
later than the early evening.

One basic way to take advantage of this is to buy a Computer, desk, and chair
so your sims have more options for employment. Then, when they have a job, you
can return all of it to get your cash back.

+----------------+
|Pre-Built Houses|
+----------------+

Houses are expensive to build from scratch, and with only $20,000 to work with
(well, less since you have to buy the lot), you may end up starting in a house
small enough and ugly enough to be appropiate for under a bum's shoe.

However, there is a way to save a bunch of money on homes from the start. For
some reason, if you buy a lot with a house already on it, then you get a HUGE
break on the price. So, the idea is to build a house before entering the lot.

It's easy to do this in Unleashed. Without a family picked, click any
residential lot, and you can build a house, INCLUDING items. Don't go crazy,
because even medium houses will cost upwards of $20,000, and remember that
that's all you have to start with.

+-------------------------+
|The Homeless Bum Strategy|
+-------------------------+

Vacation Island is a special place... there's warm sun, cool mountains, hot
chicks in bikinis, and the fact that you can't die!

That's right, you cannot die when on the island, and can therefore be a
homeless bum! Simply make a sim and immediately move him over to the Island. In
theory, you can just stay there for your entire life, stinking up pools and
digging up the grass to find treasure! And, even if you run out of money, you
don't NEED to eat, and the ground makes a perfect bed!

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