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At last! The family-nurturing phenomenon has finally spread beyond its PC roots and arrived on the PlayStation 2, bringing with it the same unique gameplay that characterised the original along with a couple of PS2-orientated tweakings.
Just in case you didn't know, The Sims is a god game. Not your ordinary god game though, this is first and foremost about people. You play god, set yourself up a little family and watch them live out their daily lives whilst you tamper with their jobs, property, lifestyles, relationships, and other assorted aspects. Obviously, being a mere video game, herein lies the opportunity to experiment and have a little fun, without having to face the consequences that would occur in, say, real life.
To cater for as wide a market as possible, the original PC version of The Sims didn't attempt anything adventurous graphically but, thanks to the wonders of modern technology, on the PS2 things have significantly improved. Now you can explore an entirely new 3D world thanks to the added power of Sony's little black box. The gameplay has also taken a slight twist, appearing with a more level-based structure. You start with just one Sim in a shack and move into bigger and better homes as you advance through life's big moments, meeting new neighbours and unlocking objects along the way. You can also create your perfect Sims home in an open-ended game play mode.
Another first for the series is the option of a multiplayer mode, which allows two players to control their own Sims in the same environment. The object in this situation is to play against each other for popularity and money. When you've done, save your house and Sims onto your memory card and take them home. Until next time.
With the added bonus of exclusive content, such as new characters and objects, it can't be argued that The Sims is not an extremely welcome arrival on the PlayStation 2. And it's about time too!