What Is 'The Sims FreePlay?'

The Sims FreePlay
Image © Electronic Arts

"The Sims FreePlay" is an iOS offshoot of publisher Electronic Arts’ best-selling life simulation series, supporting up to 16 different Sims who will work, play, and sleep while adhering to a real-time clock. An internet connection is required to play the game.

Release Info:

  • Developer: IronMonkey Studios
  • Publisher: Electronic Arts
  • Platforms: iPhone, iPad
  • App Rating: 12+
  • App Size: 409 MB
  • Languages: English, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Spanish
  • Release Date: December 15, 2011

Key Features:

  • Create up to 16 Sims in your town
  • Build houses, businesses, and workplaces
  • Earn extra money by gardening and baking
  • Own a dog that will dig for treasure
  • Purchase furniture, garden patches, pets, cars, houses and more

Players can customize homes for their Sims, buying furniture piece by piece, or choose from a series of completely furnished homes. The former option offers more than 1,200 ways to customize residences. In town, your created Sims can form relationships with others, care for dogs, grow and harvest items in gardens, bake desserts, and pursue careers as well as hobbies.

Similar to the Create-a-Sim feature in, "The Sims FreePlay" lets you customize your Sim’s gender, hair, head, eye color, skin tone, and outfit. Personalities that help shape each Sim include villain, rocker, romantic, socialite, sporty, vigilante, spiritual, old school, fashionista, crazy, party animal, flirt, creative, bookworm, tycoon and geek. Sims are limited to one personality, which influences the type of animation that plays whenever they are happy.

The touch-screen interface can be used to change your perspective on the game, whether it’s sliding a finger across the screen to pan the camera, "pinching" the screen to zoom-in on a room or Sim, or using two fingers to rotate the view. Moving your Sim is a simple matter of touching a spot where you want to go as he or she automatically walks to the location.

As with previous games in the series, you’ll need to satisfy your Sim’s needs by attending to his or her hunger, bladder, energy, hygiene, social, and fun levels. Ensuring these needs are met will make your Sims "inspired," which has them earning more experience points during the game. If your Sims are unhappy, they will earn standard experience points for tasks. Experience points are used to level up your Sims, which in turn unlocks an assortment of building options, furniture types, and more.

To satisfy a need, players can tap on a toilet (bladder), sink or shower (hygiene), and other Sims (social) and watch the interaction play out. "The Sims FreePlay" differs slightly from other versions of "The Sims" in that each action takes place over a specific duration of time, which is represented in the game by a horizontal meter that gradually fills as the Sim completes the task.

Lifestyle points are primarily earned by completing goals in your game. For example, when you start the game, the first goal is to shake hands with a dog near your starting house. Other goals can range from building a new house to adding a specific piece of furniture to your residence. Lifestyle points are used to speed up the waiting time associated with the construction of new buildings, growing plants, and so forth.

While the game is free to download and play, "The Sims FreePlay" supports in-game micro-transactions for players to acquire additional lifestyle points or Simoleons to their account. Simoleons serve as the game’s currency for purchasing or building new houses, businesses, and items for the home.

Those who do not want to pay for items can still enjoy the game and earn both lifestyle points and Simoleans by completing goals, going to work, or performing other tasks, but it will take longer amount of time to unlock things since there is waiting associated with each action.

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