Brainstorming on save files, worlds and customization
I was reading some things about Paralives, and I saw that the developers have been thinking about adding difficulty levels in the game. I would like to suggest some things. First would be a detailed screen when you click to create a new save file, and thats where you choose the difficulty. Something quite like Minecraft, you know?!
One thing I used to hate in Sims 1/2/3 was that almost none of the worlds were connected, and that I couldn’t travel to them without losing relationships and progress, but Sims 4 took that feature to the extreme where all worlds are connected, your sim doesn’t recognize other worlds as being a new place that they are visiting, they act like all worlds are like… across the street. In Sims 3 from time to time a tourist from one of the 3 world adventure’s world would show up, and it was really cool seeing them visiting the town, but in Sims 4 its like everybody form another country decided to travel together… It feels surreal and I hate it.
So, what I would suggest is that when you’re in the “Save Options” screen you have to pick a homeworld, where your sim is from, grow up and recognizes as their origin place, while all the other worlds would be seen as travel destinations. But, in-game you’ll have the option to move to the other worlds whenever you wanted. You sim would retain a “trait” or something that tells that they were from the other world, and their kids would be born with a “trait” saying that they are from the new world… This could be used to introduce mixed-races/ethnicities to the game and would be interesting, but idk so I’m not going further than that.
Also, one of the things I must love in the Sims franchise is the scripted events in the Sims 2 base game neighborhoods, as well as the story mode spin-offs called Life Stories/Pet Stories/Castaway Stories. I want to ask for the Paradevs to include a story mode on the save file config. It would work like the Life Stories, we would have a new story to play in each new DLC Pack revolving around the theme of the pack, and at the end we would unlock the world where the story is set as a reward, and maybe a couple of exclusive objects/clothing. But, the main focus of the game would be on the Sandbox Mode, so if you hate the story mode and still wanted the rewards you could unlock them through cheats.
Also, the Save Options screen could have a lot more things i can’t think of right now, but one I am desperately here to ask is about Story Progression/Rotational Gameplay. I loved playing with story progression sometimes, but my main way of playing The Sims is through rotational play, playing the premades and all… So, Sims 3 made it impossible for me to play with premades in rotational style, first because there’s an overwhelming number of premades x the number of worlds, there’s a lot of them that I don’t even know yet… And, because SIms 3 didn’t have a detailed window just for story progression. It was just a toggle option that didn’t even work properly.
Oh, and I have to say… I know there’s a lot of people in the official sims forum that everytime i start discussing about the premade sims, they show up just to say somethign like “I don’t care, I will always delete them”. So, the Save Options could have a toggle to remove premade parafolk households and have the empty world.
Also, on the premades… I would like to suggest you devs to keep each new world with like min 4 households and max 8 households. I know that in Sims 3, and probably in Paralives. A town full of premade families would be ideal, since it needs to feel more lively, but I have a solution. Have those 8 households I suggest be the same everytime you load the world without the “not inhabited” toggle, but the game will generate random families to feel the rest of the 22 households its lacking (and I’m using SIms 3 measures, that had around 30 households in each world). I hate Sims 4 reandomly generated townies, but just because sometimes their haircolor doesn’t match their ethnicity (I know any ethnicity can have any hair color, but sometimes it just looks extreme to me to have all african-american sims with blond hair… don’t feel realistic). And their clothes… Another level… So, maybe the game could check our saved outfits, like the ones in SIms 4 CAS (please, let us save our own outfits in Paralives, and share them) and pick from them. Maybe we could add some tags to the saved outfits and the randomly generated paras would have some tags… Maybe the game generated a rebel teen with a weido dad, and a classic 60’s mom. We coudl add such tags and the game would focus in picking onlly the outfits that matched the paras lifestyle/fashionstyle.
Anyway. Talking about worlds now:
I know Alex have said previously that he’s only going to include one premade world in the game, but please… don’t let that be the case. I hated when Sims 3 was released with only 1 world, and if you adopt my ideas of having a homeworld/main world, the game would have at least 2 other world for us to travel too and go on vacations. It doesn’t need to be detailed, maybe we could rent a home and everything else could be roleplaying until you added vacation packs to the game.
Also, I would like to suggest you to take the SIms 4 concept of having a big world with smaller neighborhoods, and adding a progressive loading to it. Like, lets say the world… lets call it city, because calling it world is annoying. You have a huge city map, divided in 40 sections. We have 3 worlds, one is an american suburb, the other is an egyptian desert and the other is a japanese mountain. All of them with 40 sections each. The game would be released with like 1 pre built section, called neighborhoods, built in each city map. Each neighborhood the bigger than Sims 4 neighborhoods, but smaller than a sims 3 world… maybe something like Sims 2 neighborhoods. For measures, each neighborhood would have 25 pre-built lots and 4-8 households. X3 it would be 75 pre built lots and 12-24 in the base game. A 28 day season cycle in SIms 4 leads up to about 7 weeks, for us that like playing premade families rotationally it would be ideal if each neighborhood had max 7 households which we would be able to rotate before the season ended and everyone would be aligned. But anyway…
I KNOW. a bunch of people would think its bad, thats too small, too little, etc… But there’s more to that. One thing everyoen hated in Sims 3 was that everyone world was contained in itself, and that we couldn’t explore features of all packs in every world most of the time. So, when you started the game you would have a lot of neighborhoods/sections empty that you can freely build, but 19 of them would be locked. If you wanted really bad to build them, you would have to cheat, but… Here’s a pic as an example:
Each neighborhood/section of the city map would be one of those hexagon. The ones without the red tag would be free to build, but the others would be “reserved” to future expansion packs. Although every expansion pack would introduce a new city map, with a new enviroment and culture, it would also update previously existing worlds to have new content. Also, we would be able to share whole city maps with other players, but we could go small and share only a piece of the map with a neighborhood.
The section A would be the base game neighborhood, while the others would be reserved for future content. Why 20? Its just a guessing number… Not sure how long paralives production cycle will be… 5-10 years could have less or more than 20 expansion packs, but maybe other pack types could add neighborhoods too. Each world/city would have its own Bluewater Village, its own Del Sol Valley, its own Isla Paradiso. But, the devs would consider looking the sections that could be more useful. In a desert type city map, if there was only one section with a lake, they would lock that for a island Living/Island Paradise pack, or a Mermaid Game Pack. Sections next to the base game neighborhood would be locked for use with bigger cities, like downtowns/del sol valley. As I said, if you really wanted to build on them, you could cheat, but a warning would appear that in the case a new pack used that section, you would have to manually place the new neighborhood in another section or replace the one you modified.
Why the hexagon shape? Well, I was talking about progressive loading later, but never finished… Thats where the hexagons enter. Instead of having the whole map loaded at the same time, causing lag and frustration at some point, each section would only load if you were using it. Lets say my parafolk is at home, but her daughter is going to the campus for a class. She would eb driving to get there, but while she would drive the game would have a off-screen loading process. IDK if that would work, I’m no developer, but I can see that being useful.
Also, add cultures/walkstyles/favorites/etc related to each world. I know that not every inhabitant of a particular place has all their characteristics related to their culture (I’m brazilian, but I would never play soccer), but add some culture. Like… You know the “talk-like-a-pirate” day in The Sims, and how it changes their accent in-game? That would be amazing… Imagine Champs Les Sims inhabitants talking simlish with a french accent! That would be so lovely to see. Also, as I suggested american/egyptian/japanese, other things could be added to their culture like using forks or other things to eat, maybe if you added a time travel pack in a medieval setting/caveman setting, they could eat with hands. And, if we had that in the base game, to choose our homeworld, and have the choice to travel to the other worlds… Like, lets say I’m playing on the american suburb world, and visit the Japanese world, I could learn kung fu, how to eat with chopsticks, learn about their culture, find bugs/rocks/seeds related to their environment, etc… I love that in SIms 4 we can learn selvadoradian culture… I love the selvadoradian dance… But I also hate that there’s no premades living there, I can’t play there as a native… Maybe I could travel to Pleasantview to learn how to smustle… haha Some limits are annoying, some are good and I hope Paralives all the details and limits necessary for it to be the best life simulator out there.
I think thats the limit of my brainstorming… I have some suggestions for premade families that I’ll share lated (a french Omelette family, parody of the Pancakes… Anyone? haha).