Most helpful positive review
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Very fun expansion!
on June 23, 2012
This expansion is the latest in the Sims 3 franchise. Its major contribution to the Sims 3 world is the addition of three new careers: Singer, Acrobat, and Magician, along with venues for these performers (and Sim guests) to visit and perform in, along with objects, clothes, lifetime wishes, and rewards related to performing.
This seems like the best-realized of the Sims expansions. The objects are very well-made, with plenty of special objects like mechanical bulls, jukeboxes, karaoke machines, pool tables, and more. The careers are interesting if repetitive, and the new wishes and rewards are really cute. The EP also introduces the concept of Simport, which allows Simmers to send their performers into other Simmers' gameworlds to perform and to receive other Simmers' performers into their own.
The hometown that comes with this world looks very thematic, complete with a "Hollywood"-style giant wooden sign in Simlish at its edge. There's plenty to explore, especially with the new venues. The families in the town are all right; they're nowhere near as purely fun as those in Lunar Lakes or Hidden Springs, but they're extremely thematic for the performer-dominated town here. The houses range from modernistic to Mediterranean styled; I found them difficult to live in and decorate, but they are very nicely made. It's not too hard to customize the world with your own lots and with Late Night and World Adventure venues. I should also mention that there doesn't seem like there's a lot of child-related things in this EP, which is fine for someone like me who rarely plays families but which might cause a Simmer who prefers families to feel like their Sim-children have been neglected.
The Katy Perry special edition included a few special costumes that are terribly cute, along with some stage props I particularly like and a custom-made venue. The venue is really nice, with an LA vibe. I use one of the costumes frequently and the stage props are fun for the type of Sims I usually play--fun-loving Sims who play around a lot. If you see something in the bonus content you really like, then get it with the assurance that it's well-made stuff. If you don't see something you like in the bonus content's collection, then the special edition EP won't be worth it to you.
Simport gets old extremely quickly. It's a bit like Facebook and AIM right in your game; you can see and make status updates and share memories with the friends you've selected from the website. After experimenting with it a while, I got tired of it and turned it off. It's incredibly buggy and cranky to use and crashes the game on my Mac after it's been running a short while. But it's a neat idea, and if you liked the Sims but wished it was more cooperative or social, then you might really love Simport. I don't really care for social/cooperative play so I don't like it enough to fight with it.
Performing is very fun--people who've tried Sims Medieval might recognize the general mechanics from the blacksmith occupation from TSM; you set up the general "perform" command, then issue sub-commands within that general one to do special things like blow kisses to the crowd or do Michael Jackson-style dance moves. It gets repetitive very quickly; there aren't nearly enough different songs or tricks, for example, though the ones that are there are pretty cool to watch. But I enjoy it as a change of pace. Sims can rise through the ranks very quickly and get very wealthy as top-level performers, which didn't seem too unreasonable to me. Two types of performance that don't get a lot of attention but which I think are very neat are the ability to DJ (with your own portable DJ station) and sing karaoke. I just wish EA would release more songs and tricks for Sims to perform!
The hairs, clothes, and objects are all 5/5. Some are misses, mostly men's hairs, which are, as usual, rather weird-looking to me. The hairs especially are getting more and more creative and imaginative. The clothes are getting more complex and detailed, which is always a plus. The new stage prop type objects are also useable as room decoration or seating, which opens up all sorts of new possibilities; one of the prop themes is "steampunk"--which means that now it's possible to make a 3rd-party-content-free steampunk house. The prop objects also work really well with the Store's magic sets.
You don't need anything but the base game to run this expansion pack. I got mine on DVD and it runs just fine on both my Mac and PC computers. I'm not sure I'd recommend it as the very first EP someone should buy after getting the base game unless the idea of making a performer makes that person just ecstatic, but I think that most Simmers, especially ones who prefer playing adult Sims, would enjoy the new things this EP brings.