I Finally Explore The Sims 4: What I Don’t Like About It

I must confess that I have never really understood the attraction of the Sims, but when Electronic Arts/Origin decided to make The Sims 4 available for free for a limited time, I decided to finally take the plunge and give it a try. All I had to lose was some hard drive space and some spare time, right?

Now, my only previous exposure to The Sims has been watching funny YouTube videos like Kelsey Impicciche’s 100 baby challenge (which apparently is a thing to do in The Sims 4). And while I certainly have no desire to have 100 babies, I did want to get my feet wet, and see what the fuss was all about. So I downloaded and installed the software.

You start off in the character editor, where you set various attributes of your avatar, such as your avatar proportions and the way you walk:

I did notice that you can actually click and drag your mouse on the avatar to adjust various aspects of your avatar’s shape, which I thought was pretty cool. You’re also supposed to select your avatar’s “aspiration”, from a disappointingly small list of options:

So I decided to select Trend-Setter. Then I started playing and clicking around, and it’s certainly a very different way of adjusting your avatar shape compared to Second Life! Here I am trying on different kinds of noses:

After a lot of futzing around I finally picked a hairstyle I could live with, and Vanity Fair (Sims edition) was born!

But, as soon as I got in-world, my heart sank when I saw this menu pop up in the bottom right hand corner:

Hunger? Hygeine? BLADDER?!?? Hey, I didn’t sign up for this! This reminds me of all those add-ons in Second Life which try to make SL more like real life by making you feel hunger, thirst, etc. Sorry, but I’m not interested in running for the toilet whenever I need to pee in a virtual world! I prefer to spend my time in a fantasy, not someplace that reminds me of all the things I need to do in my real life, like laundry, dishes, cleaning toilets and taking out the garbage! But then, what should I have expected of a “life simulation” game?

So, what do I think of The Sims overall? Coming from Second Life and other virtual worlds, I miss the very thing that makes them special: your interaction with other avatars, who have real people behind them. People who can surprise, delight, confound, and even upset you. No matter how polished the computer algorithms controlling the other characters you encounter are, they can’t replace the brain of a real live human being behind the keyboard of another avatar. You can’t have real conversations (in fact, the avatars in The Sims 4 speak a made-up language called Simlish).

I’m quite sure that The Sims can be great fun, and you can certainly do a lot in it (like design and build the gorgeous mansion of your dreams). But the fact that this is, at heart, a single-player game, just kind of takes the fun and excitement out of it for me. So while I’m glad I had a chance to try The Sims out for free, I doubt that I will be playing it that often. But I’ll keep it on my hard drive for now; who knows, maybe I’ll come back for another kick at the can.


Second Life Steals, Deals, and Freebies: Free and Inexpensive Shoes for Female Avatars

It can be tricky to find free or inexpensive footwear for female avatars, so in this blogpost I will be pulling together all the information I have about finding free or cheap shoes and boots for women.

One wardrobe staple I turn to time and again is this free set of women’s classic pumps by Marquesse, available from the excellent freebie store at Ajuda SL Brasil on the third floor (here’s the SLURL):

They come in white, black, red, and nude, and fit Slink mesh feet:

Wander around the women’s section of the freebie store at Ajuda SL Brasil (on both the first and third floors) and you will find many other pairs of free footwear for female avatars, everything from sneakers to thigh-high boots! Here’s just a sample of shoes from Nala Design:

If you join the Rowne group for free, you can pick up this lovely pair of Jai women’s pumps at the Gift Wall in their store (here’s the SLURL), which comes with a 15-colour HUD:

The Jai pumps come in sizes to fit Maitreya, Belleza and Slink mesh feet.

Another wardrobe staple I use quite often are a free sample pack of Slink-compatible shoes from Garbaggio, available on the SL Marketplace:

The set consists of flats, mid-height heels, and high heels in four colours: white, red, black, and nude. Here’s a close-up look at the mid heel along with the colour HUD:

Baby Monkey has some nice freebies at a couple of locations. At the Free*Style store you can pick three different sets of footwear—pumps, hiking shoes, and boots—in grey, green, and blue (here’s the SLURL):

Here’s what the Leana pumps look like, along with the colour HUD:

If you go to the Free Dove freebie store, there’s an updated “basics” set of Baby Monkey Leana pumps available in sizes for Maitreya, Belleza, and Slink mesh feet as well as classic avatar feet, along with a 10-colour HUD (here’s the SLURL):

There are many other high-quality freebies in the shoe section at the Free Dove, so be sure to pay them a visit and check out what’s available:

And finally, there are dozens and dozens of pairs of stylish footwear available for only L$10 each in the Baby Monkey sale section, located in a skybox high above the main store on the Keraxic sim (please note: this is an adult-rated Second Life sim, so you need to set your viewer settings to include Adult content if you want to be able to visit the Baby Monkey store). Here’s the SLURL to take you directly there.

Each set comes with a 32-to-35 colour HUD, which should allow you to match just about any outfit you are wearing! This is an incredible deal, so you should visit and flip through the vendors just to see what’s for sale. Depending on the style, there are sizes for Maitreya, Belleza, and Slink mesh feet, as well as classic avatar feet.

Another place to pick up many pairs of free shoes for female avatars is Hilly Haalan. Simply join their group for free and click the panels at the landing point, or the nearby freebie store! Here are just a few examples:

The suede Sonnet pumps (upper right in the bottom picture) come with a 20-colour HUD, and are available in versions for Maitreya, Belleza, and Slink mesh feet. I find myself using them quite a bit.

If you join the Legendaire V.I.P. group for only L$49, you can pick up quite a few pairs of trendy shoes and boots from their group gift wall:

If you join the S@bbia group for free, you can pick up a nice pair of brown penny loafers for free at their store (here’s the SLURL):

If you join the Versov group for free, you can pick up a pair of Jumpov sneakers as a free group gift from their store (here’s the SLURL):

The Jumpov sneakers come in sizes to fit Maitreya, Belleza, and Slink mesh feet, as well as an unrigged pair which you can adjust to fit just about any foot (it also comes in men’s sizes). The included HUD allows you to customize every aspect of these sneakers as you wish!

If you join the Petite Mort & Oubliette VIP group for free, you can pick a couple of neat pairs of sneakers as free group gifts. Oubliette has a pair of floral skull chucks at this SLURL:

And Petite Mort has a nice pair of black floral chucks at this SLURL:

And, if you like flowers on your sneakers, there’s another free pair available at the entrance of the Baby Monkey store at this SLURL:

So, as you can see, it’s not hard to find some fabulous footwear for nothing, or next to nothing, in Second Life! Happy shopping!

UPDATED! Pictures from the Gala De La Lune Event in Sansar

Almost fifty avatars showed up in their finest formalwear for this Friday evening event! The following pictures of the Gala De La Lune event were taken by me, Torley Linden, and Andrew William:

UPDATE May 20th: Olympus Mons posted the following hour-long video to YouTube of the gala. Enjoy!

Gala De La Lune Formal Event Tomorrow Evening in Sansar

Have you joined the RyanSchultz.com Discord yet? More details here

And I like large parties. They’re so intimate. At small parties there isn’t any privacy.

—F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby

Linden Lab is hosting a formal event in Sansar tomorrow evening, Friday, May 17th, 2019 from 4:00-9:00 p.m. Pacific time/Sansar time. The event, titled Gala De La Lune, is described as:

A Great Gatsby inspired formal event. Croquet, scones, and ballgowns. It don’t mean a thang if it ain’t got no Electroswing.

And if your avatar is looking for something suitable to wear, the Sansar Store has a featured selection of formal clothing created for such an event!

Here’s the lineup of performers for the party:

  • 4:00-5:00 p.m. PST – DJ Bayleigh
  • 5:00-6:00 p.m. PST – DJ Puddles
  • 6:00-7:00 p.m. PST – DJ GrandadGotMojo
  • 7:00-8:00 p.m. PST – DJ DisneyHuntress

You will need to install the Sansar client software on your computer and create an account to attend this party. Here’s a guide on how to get started. On the day of the event, open up Sansar and navigate to the Atlas (look for the Go button on the left-hand-side menu). Once there, click on the Gala De La Lune experience to join. The doors will open 30 minutes ahead of the event.

It promises to be a very elegant soirée. I hope to see you there!