Tim LeTourneau Walks You Through The Sims 2 University

Thursday, February 17, 2005 - 22:30

Watch The Sims 2 University in action as Senior Producer Tim LeTourneau gives you a video tour of The Sims 2 University.

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The Sims 2 University

We get another quick look at the first expansion and prepare to send a familiar face off to school.

We had a chance to see an updated look at The Sims 2 University last night. While we've seen most of the things that they were showing, we did get a chance to see a few new things that pleased us. Yes. Pleased. As was the case with the parent product, University has a ton of personality going into it. We saw a ton of new animations that any fan of the original will love, new gadgets, and received a copy of the game to play.

Coincidentally, Jimmy (you remember Jimmy, right?) at some point managed to have sexual relations with another sim in a town somewhere in Canada. While no one believed him, it's quite obvious that this young man is, in fact, the sum of Jimmy's life and love (ew). So Jimmy did the only thing any parent could do when he finds out that he has a son that wants to be part of his life. He sent him off to school so he wouldn't have to deal with it. I'll be sharing the adventures of Jimmy Jr. at university in the next couple of weeks with all of the fun and frolic that you might expect from a college experience. Judging by all of the great things to play with in the expansion, this should be an interesting ride.

Jr. will have to begin his career in dorm life, just like everyone else that enters college for the first time. This means he'll have his own private room, but will have to live with a bunch of other sims, which could be disastrous. The dorms is where first friendships can be formed and the game really starts playing. And that seems to be the thing. University will be more like a game than The Sims 2 was. There will actually be small objectives that each of the characters will want to carry out that will be long term goals. Along with that, because of the time suck that is school, balancing relationships with study and the need to make money will be a big one.

Of course, studying is the big money maker. Good grades mean good grants coming from the school. But for those sims that actually want to live the life and have some fun, they might want to get a job at the coffee shop or bar. Or perhaps, if their creativity is good enough, they might actually want to pick up an instrument at the local community center and play a jam for some cash. Earning the extra dough will allow sims to purchase better equipment and even move out of the dorms into better digs.

Extra money will allow for the purchase of some great things. In fact, there are a lot of new items being put in the game, but the most interesting are personal items. New vending machines will now allow sims to buy personal equipment for a certain price such as cell phones and MP3 players. After purchase, these objects will always be with the sim.

The Sims 2 University

Those looking to pick up quick cash without having to do any work can always move down the dark path. Along with Fraternities and Sororities (neither of which are gender biased) are secret societies. These hang outs are for the underbelly of the college world. For inside of these beasts sit computers that can hack into grades and counterfeiting machines that can make you some cash easily. The only concern for those that take part is getting caught by the police. Higher skills will help criminals avoid the police for as long as possible, but as we saw last night, the police will eventually show up, lecture the character, and confiscate both money and possessions as a penalty. Jimmy Jr. should fit in nicely with this group, assuming they accept him.

In order to be part of a secret society (or sorority or fraternity for that matter) you have to get to be friends with someone on the inside. The secret society is a bit harder simply because you have to find one of the members wearing the right clothes and become friends with them.

Having lots of friends is a big goal for many sims, especially in college where half of the fun is partying and hooking up. There are a lot of new social items to make things easier as well. Bonfires, fruit barrels (they look like pineapples now and are pretty much kegs) and bubble blowers (that resemble hookahs) are the most noticeable. But other items of a more private nature are also available, including new career rewards. These include the new plastic surgery machine, which allows players to change their sim faces (just watch out for the malfunction that causes... unfortunate changes in appearance); a camera that allows players to set up pictures with their sims, snap photos, and hang them on the walls; the book of the dead that allows players to bring dead sims back as zombies (there's nothing quite as entertaining as seeing a horrifically ugly zombie streaking down the street); and a predatory cow plant that eats and then can be milked for Elixir of Life (which for those that don't remember, extends the life of sims).

There's a lot of stuff going into The Sims 2 University. Hopefully Jimmy Jr. will be able to uncover much of it in the course of his "studies" at college. You can be sure he'll be pulling all kinds of pranks and cause general mayhem. Look for all the gory details in the next couple of weeks. If son is anything like father, things should be quite interesting.


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