Developer: Electronic Arts Inc.
Price: $6.99 Download on the App Store
The Sims is a storied video-game franchise, one that began years and years ago and is still going strong. Anticipation for The Sims 3 was such that Electronic Arts was able to release the title on the Mac, PC and iPhone all in one day. In the App Store demand for the new title was frantic, despite its $9.99 price tag, and The Sims 3 iPhone app quickly broke into the best-seller ranks. It currently sits at seventh on the top-paid apps list.
As ever, your goal is to sensibly and reliably raise the quality of life for yourself and your surroundings. You do everything from feeding yourself, paving roads, to building a library and, yes, procreating. You can manage your characters’ lives in a saintly way, or let them run autonomously, and perhaps devilishly kicking over a garbage can. On a day off, take them fishing or shopping for clothes.
You can manipulate the lives of your Sims using touch and accelerometer controls while exploring the 3D neighborhood.
As with other Sims titles – and they’re on every platform imaginable – you can customize your Sims' looks, personalities and life styles. Give them green eyes. Cover their heads in blond curls or have your Sims sport a Mohawk haircut. You can make them neurotic, witty or outgoing (my Sim is both shy and an idiot).
The graphics and game-play time of the Sims franchise is well established and The Sims 3 for iPhone and iPod touch is no different. There are endless hours of entertainment packed into the handheld version (and desktop and console platforms too, of course).
Not unlike SimCity, this game is memory intensive. Restart your device before playing and hope the game doesn’t crash at an inopportune time.
What’s remarkable is how EA has been able to shoehorn a game of this complexity into an iPhone and iPod touch app. The navigation is excellent – intuitive and easy to follow.
Oddly, The Sims 3’s navigation reminds me of Slingmedia’s SlingPlayer for iPhone app, which is complex in another way but with a user interface that does a remarkable job with a complex application.