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Story Mode Progression
Introduction to SMP

From even before it was released, the seamless neighborhood is one of selling points of of what makes The Sims 3 to be better than its predecessor. When I first heard about The Sims 3, I was very excited about this about this idea and how everyone went about their business and how the other people went about their business and grew around my active family. My only concern was how it would play out when you wanted to more than one active family, a bit like in a soap opera.

When playing one active family, I was impressed from the beginning on how Sunset Valley and Riverview do appear to be living, breathing communities but over the months that I have been playing it, I had started to notice that things are not as perfect as they appear and that running more a few active households comes at a price.

Background and Backstories

Story Mode Progresion (SMP) is what helps the town to keep up when you are playing one active family. As your sims grow, so does the townsfolk and SMP makes it so. Families can come and families can go, sims can get married and/or have children. Also, they can die, even in front of playable sims. It is what keeps them busy, sending them visiting, having them chat in the street, everything that the AI does is part of SMP. In a few paragraph's time, I will be detailing the process on changing which is your active household so you can play the town from another perspective.

Sunset Valley's Story Progression

In my second indepth report, I looked at the residents of Sunset Valley. Since then, I have played the Miles family for over 30 days. In that time, quite a lot can happen around them. Some parts were noticed but others were not. However, things can change very quickly indeed. Please note that how things worked out in the Miles family's savegame will probably not be exactly how things worked out in any other.

One thing is guaranteed in all savegames of this age. Of the existing characters who we looked at in the first report, many of them have died and of those remaining, they are a lot older. They are elders or quite close to becoming that age, apart from the odd anomalies that I will come to later. I have noticed that although relationships do not tend to change, a sim's career and job level does not stay the same from one minute to the next.

Changing the Active Household

Go to options and click on "Edit Town". It always asks if you want to save the game. If you do not want to lose anything in case things change in a way that you do not want, I recommend that you do so.

In the bottom left corner is an icon marked "Change Active Household". When you click it, it then asks if you are sure and then reminds you that promises and wishes for the current active household are lost. It does not point out that all opportunities go as well, their fridges will be restored to default and their inventories will be seriously whittled down.

It effectively brings you back to how things were when we began. Previously, we opted to Create Sims but this time, we are going to Choose Household. When you click on that button, all of the occupied households are highlighted.

Once you pick a family, you do not have to decide on it. You do have a chance again to change your mind.

When you do select it, you are immediately zoomed to that house and the clock is ticking.

Written at 03:14 on Tuesday 23 June 2009 by Andy.

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