Sims 4 – The exhausting world of feeling too much

Today we will be taking a step back on Adventure point and click games and check out Sims 4.

I’m not sure whether you are a fan of these games, but since day 1 that I’ve been playing this.

I remember playing Sims 1 forever, trying out different house shapes and putting my awful Feng Shui to practice. We didn’t have a lot of choices and the Sims all looked the same. There were awful loading screens and the game was so hard that I eventually would cheat to move to a better house or just to have money to have kids. After some time, it got boring, because let’s face it, there wasn’t a lot that could be done.

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I can barely remember Sims 2. I’ve recently read in some reviews that it might be the best one of the series. I know I’ve played it but I can’t really recall.

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Then came Sims 3 which is my favorite one so far. The graphics are great and there is so much to do that you can play it several ways. I love the Open world. I have the feeling that I really am part of the community. I’ve read in some reviews that this Open World feature is a headache for many players who have slowness and glitching issues.

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I can’t say the same. I have some worlds that are unplayable. They just freeze and annoy the crap out of me. Then I have the Bridgeport world, my favorite. But every time I play I need to use the reset sim command, because my sims always get stuck on elevators. But there is so much to do there, so many ways to play and so many details.

I love all the expansions, ones better than the others. I like world adventures but I have no patience to wait for the loading screen. Seriously it takes me more than 10 minutes to leave my world and go around other places. I have to say that the best one for me is Seasons. Going through the different seasons and having a fest for each one is so relatable and it makes us aware of the passage of time. I like my life simulation games to be as much alike normal life as possible (minus the werewolves, fairies and stuff)

I could do whole post about Sims 3 and how amazing I think it is, but that might be for another time. Now we’ll see Sims 4.

I have to say that I was terribly excited to play this game. My boyfriend got me the base game for Christmas and I could barely wait for the installation time. For me this would be like a continuation of Sims 3, but with brand new cool stuff.

The first impression was WHOA nice graphics!!

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I didn’t mind the CAS being gone and not having that many many choices that we had as creating a sim. I realize this was a base game and it was normal not to have a lot.

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I’m also a very simple person. I can’t have many choices otherwise I will get lost. It’s the same when I got to a supermarket. If it’s too big, I can’t seem to buy anything. Too many choices! So when sims 3 gave me the change to even paint some parts of the sims’ hair one colour and the rest another, I thought that it was really going too far.

So the beginning was fine. I was ok with the creation of the sims. Then came the house. There is a big change on this part. It is soooooooo simple to create buildings on sims 4. And they look amazing! Again I didn’t mind not having that many choices. In sims 3, I ended up not using most of the stuff. There were so many! Also the bar that showed the objects was so small that I couldn’t actually understand what the hell it was. And I have no patience to check all of them one by one. In Sims 4, this was resolved so it was a pleasure to build lovely houses.

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I had my family, I had a house, I was ready to go. And then it all started to go downhill.

First of all, there was no more Open World. I now could go down the street, but that’s it. To go to different buildings I had loading screens. They were extremely fast but they completely ruin the experience for me. I ended up staying at home most of the time, since I wanted to have a continuous paced game. When my sims went to work, they disappeared and I thought ‘Come onnnnn EA, didn’t we get through this already? Why on earth are we back to this again?’

I can only control one sim per time, which means that if I send one to a community place, I have to follow him all through this time. The other one stays on the house like nothing had happened.

A cool feature that works is multitasking. I can now proudly read my book while sitting down on the toilette. Jokes aside, this is actually one of the things that I miss when I play sims 3.

I also felt like my free will was taken. In Sims, we don’t really have a guideline and we do as we wish. On this one I felt like I had to do what my Sims wanted me to. I had to follow his string of emotions. I felt like I was playing a tablet game. ‘Do this, now go here, do that, follow that and great, you’ve won!’

And it was all so easy. If I had a Sim with the cooking skill, he would progress so fast on the Cooking job that it was ridiculous. I wasn’t expecting Sims 1 difficulty, but come one, let me play a little. Don’t give me everything.

Emotions are the most important features added to this game – Emotions. My opinion on this is

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It really sums up what I think. I mean it’s great and all that they get inspired and paint an awesome painting or get angry and drop an angry poop. But it doesn’t really get you anywhere different. These emotions are so easily influenced that it gets a bit ridiculous. I mean, it only takes a hot shower for the sim to get flirty. During one single day the sim can have all of the emotions that exist. It must be exhausting.

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My sim could wake up fine, then get sad because he saw a dirty dish, wash it up and feel confident, start to cook breakfast and feel inspired then get extremely focused for 5 seconds and then finish off by getting out of the shower felling flirty. It’s too much!

I don’t think it really added much to the gameplay. It’s good to see sims change depending on their moods, but honestly, it’s only entertaining for some time, then I want to play.

And that’s where this game is failing. There’s nothing to do! Really, you visit the ridiculous few places that you can (while enjoying the loading screens) and that’s it.

Since I played for quite some time Sims 3 with all of the expansions, I thought that this might be my problem. I was just used to have so many things to do. It would be unfair to compare a base game to an Expansion full one.

So , when the first game pack came I anxiously bought it. Outdoor Retreat was good and brought a lot of things, especially considering that it wasn’t that expensive. But I still felt like this wasn’t what I had envisioned for Sims 4.

I gave it a last try and bought the first expansion ‘Get to Work’. Again, it was great. But I couldn’t shake the negative parts. I don’t want to play with only one sim at the time. I want to play with all my sims. I want to follow them to work, but not get stuck there for the whole day.

And I gave up.

When the game was launched there was a lot of discussion about what was missing from this base game, simple things such as swimming pools (now added), toddlers and dishwasher. For me that is not really the problem, although it adds to it.

I just couldn’t shake the feeling that this was not want I wanted from Sims. It looks awesome but it feels hollow. There is no Story Progression, there are no seasons, I really don’t feel like I am in life experience. The game was transformed in an all chicks game where the feelings are what matter.

My problem is that I was spoiled with the all of the possibilities of Sims 3. For me, the only way to go next was to take this one as a starting point and go up.

Whenever Origin allows me to, I will try to play again to see if I can get used to it. BTW, Origin sucks big time. There are so many updates that need to be done and then the games won’t work. There are a lot of workarounds, but the last time I tried I wasn’t able to get anywhere. I had to wait until the next update to see if it would work and until then I couldn’t access the game.

It did work…till the next update for sure.

The Thief of Joy

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I feel like this quote reflects exactly how I am. I think my biggest flaw is always comparing everything I do and how I live to others.

Every time I do this, I end up feeling down. In my mind, I would be totally happy if…… (add here whatever you want. Everything goes.).

This thinking always prevents me from doing something that I want to do. For example, I always thought of writing. But every time I read something I think ‘Come on! You’ll never be able to write something like that! Stick with the things you can really do!’

And probably I won’t be any good at writing, but the point is I never tried. I always compare myself to others and end up getting the short straw. What I should think is that, even though I could never be exactly like the person I am comparing myself to, it’s fine to be me.

I always thought of myself as realistic, but maybe I’m really a pessimist.

These are the things that I need to write on my blackboard several times, just like Bart Simpson:

  • My daughter is beautiful in every way.
  • I have a lovely partner, who I sometimes don’t give enough credit.
  • I have a tiring but sweet dog.
  • I’m healthy.
  • My family gets along well with each other, as much as possible. And are always there to help anyone in need.
  • I have a nice apartment, even though it’s not a house with a garden.
  • I have a job that pays more than the bills, and even if I don’t really like it, it does the trick while I look for something else.
  • I have nice colleagues at work that are becoming my friends.
  • I have nice and cool friends.
  • I have days that I’m feeling down and hate everything, but most of all I’m happy.

 

  • I’m happy I’m happy I’m happy.

Mood of the day

“Wake up in the morning, stumble on my life
Can’t get no love without sacrifice
If anything should happen, I guess I wish you well
A little bit of heaven, but a little bit of hell

This is the hardest story that I’ve ever told
No hope, or love, or glory
Happy endings gone forever more

I feel as if I’m wastin’
And I’m wastin’ everyday

This is the way you left me,
I’m not pretending.
No hope, no love, no glory,
No happy ending.
This is the way that we love,
Like it’s forever.
Then live the rest of our life,
But not together.

2 o’clock in the morning, something’s on my mind
Can’t get no rest; keep walkin’ around
If I pretend that nothin’ ever went wrong, I can get to my sleep
I can think that we just carried on

This is the hardest story that I’ve ever told
No hope, or love, or glory
Happy endings gone forever more

I feel as if I’m wastin’
And I’m wastin’ everyday

This is the way you left me,
I’m not pretending.
No hope, no love, no glory,
No happy ending.
This is the way that we love,
Like it’s forever.
Then live the rest of our life,
But not together.

A little bit of love, little bit of love
Little bit of love, little bit of love

This is the way you left me,
I’m not pretending.
No hope, no love, no glory,
No happy ending.”

By Mika “Happy Ending”

Walking around in….Óbidos

 

It appears that I can’t leave my own country. The last 3 posts on this category have been about Portugal. But it really is a pleasure to show you places that you might have not seen yet.

This time I give you….Óbidos.

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The name comes from the Latin oppidum, which means something like a fortified city. And that’s exactly what it is. We have the city inside the walls of the castle.

The town in itself is quite small but full of spirit. We can walk around peaceful in the streets, without any cars. The town now hosts several festivities, such as the Chocolate feast, the medieval market and the Christmas market, which actually fill the town up till the breaking point.

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If you come to Portugal, and like small picturesque places, by all means come to Óbidos.

 

 

Blogging day 11 or a Helplessness Tale

Welcome to MY Day Eleven of Blogging University:

Today’s assignment: publish a post based on your own, personalized take on a blogging prompt.

So, I went to Daily Post and picked this one:

Helplessness: that dull, sick feeling of not being the one at the reins. When did you last feel like that –- and what did you do about it?

Do you know when you’re down you just have an irresistible wish to listen to sad depressing songs? Well that’s me today. I’m feeling down. So, wth, let’s write a post about Helplessness.

BEWARE: Long post ahead with details from birth that you might not want to read!

The last time I felt this way was on what was supposed to be one of the best days of my life. My daughter’s birth.

As I’ve mentioned before, being pregnant is not my thing. AT ALL. Except from the part that my child was growing inside of me, everything else sucked. BIG TIME.

Due to this, I was more or less prepared for a horrible experience at labour. I made an effort to not look it up on how things were going to happen. I hate the gory aspects of that. I tried to repeat to myself several times a day, that women are birthing children since forever, so I should be able to do it.

The time came when my water broke and I went to the hospital. There I got an epidural to help with the pain. Some hours later, and after pushing 3 times, my beautiful daughter was born.

NOT

Now for what really happened. My doctor sees himself as a natural kind of guy, which means that the birth of the child will only happen when the child is ready to come out. So if it takes 50 weeks or 100 weeks, it’s fine. The baby will tell us when it’s time.

So, I was dragging myself at almost 42 weeks, waiting for my child to be ready. One night, we just decided it was time. I was so fed up that we went to the hospital at 1 in the morning. I don’t really remember what I said to be admitted, but actually, when everyone there saw my huge belly and asked me how far along I was, they all agreed to admit me immediately.

We spent the night there, afraid that in the morning, my doctor would come and tell us to go home, because it was not time yet.

Fortunately he came and asked if we wanted to induce the labour. FOR GOD’S SAKE OF COURSE! Bring me the drugs!

The labour started being induced at around 9 in the morning. People out there that prefer to have their labours induced please don’t be ridiculous! IT hurts A LOT. And guess what, it might not work at first. Or at the third time, such as in my case. It hurts like hell and then you start having big contractions suddenly. There isn’t a crescendo of pain. No no no. It’s nothing….. nothing…. BAM!

I requested for an epidural immediately. Bless those people. They came and they tried their best to stick the needle in me. It’s crazy how they still can do it, when we can’t stop moving around because of the pains. I didn’t even feel it. I just wanted for them to do it so I could have some relief.

I started to relax….and then suddenly, something started beeping. The anesthesiologist and the nurse looked anxiously at the monitor that I was connected to and started speaking with each other, without explaining us anything. Then, one of them just made me lie down and told my boyfriend that the heart rhythm of our baby had just dropped, so she needed to come out STAT.

Totally scared and not exactly understanding what was going on, my gurney was pushed quickly through the corridors, passing through several doors being opened quickly. I kept staring at the roof trying to stay calm. My boyfriend stayed behind to dress himself for the Operating room.

Then we stopped in one corridor, and my doctor appeared. He checked again my daughter’s heart rhythm and it appeared that all had come back to normal. My boyfriend just arrived, looking scared shit.

My doctor took us to an empty room where we relaxed. All of the sudden, I started drooling. I wasn’t able to control my throat. Couldn’t speak and couldn’t keep the drool inside my mouth. I started to panic. The doctor calmed me down and explained that the epidural had gone up because they had to lie me down so quickly. I relaxed and rested for a while. I was in no pain whatsoever and as long as they kept cleaning my face so I wouldn’t drown, everything was fine by me.

After some time we moved to the labour room, but nothing really was happening. I sat down on that hideous labour chair and had a yogurt that my doctor brought me. It seemed that it was going to take a while. The three of us chatted for almost an hour. I had to take another epidural because it was taking so long that the effect had worn out.

This all had started at 9 in the morning. It was almost 7 in the evening and all was the same. At least as far as I was aware. I don’t quite recall why the doctor decided it was time to start, but probably it was because I was ready. My waters didn’t break naturally. He had to do it. Which hurts. A LOT, since the second epidural was weaker and had already lost the effect.

Then it all began and there was no more time for another epidural.

It was like we see it the movies. PUSH PUSH PUSH!

I actually kept pushing for 3 hours. I did every position that we see on old books. I cried, I begged for a C-section, I repeated over and over for my boyfriend to save me. When the doctor saw that It would be a difficult birth, he told everyone to leave the room and we stayed the three alone in the room.

It was the hardest thing I had to do. It hurt like crazy, it was the longest actual birth I had ever heard of, my boyfriend had to grab my legs for me not to close them in despair, and in the end, my daughter had to be reanimated. It took what it seemed like forever for her to return to the room and be put in my arms.

Then I stayed there for about an hour being stitched up, holding her and looking at this strange creature that was in my arms. I was feeling every stitch and I was hurting a lot. I was terrible afraid that because of this, I would drop her. So for one hour, I remained terrified from what had happened and from holding her.

When the doctor finished, it was about midnight and I was moved to the recovery room. There a nurse went to check if everything was ok. She pushed my belly so hard that I was reminded once again of the horror of all of it. Then I was supposed to start feeding my daughter. I was extremely tired, hurting in all places, my boyfriend couldn’t be with me in the recovery room so I was feeling all alone and I had to give my breasts to this hungry child.

Fortunately, in the first times that I gave breast it all went ok. The problems started afterwards, after some comments that made me less confident in myself and my abilities as a mother. But that’s for another day.

After some time in recovery, I went back to the room where my boyfriend was anxiously awaiting for us.

He then took care of us. I assumed that after some sleep I would be feeling better. What really happened was that when I woke up I couldn’t really get up. I couldn’t move to get my daughter. I couldn’t give her her first bath. I could only feed her if she was put right next to me.

I thought that the problem was me. I was weak. Several women give birth and are able to walk right after and here I was, still complaining that I couldn’t move. I felt like a terrible mother from day one. I wasn’t able to birth correctly and now I wasn’t able to take care of her.

Someone came and asked if I wanted to take a shower. I accepted but requested help. She helped me get out of bed and dragged me to the shower. She actually had to clean me since I couldn’t and boy she wasn’t happy about this. She made me feel worse by saying that I should already be able to move better and that I had a child to take care of now.

I returned to my bed and stayed there feeling like crap. After some time I had to go to the toilette. My boyfriend helped me get there and then I was decided to do the rest alone. I did my thing and then I got up to pull my pants up. And then I felt like something had just fallen from inside me. I was so scared that I didn’t even look. I yelled for my boyfriend and remained on the exact same position, terrified.

He came and calmed me down. It wasn’t another baby nor an organ that had just fallen down. It was a bulk of gauze pads, that were used to stop the bleeding for my doctor to stitch me up after the birth.

My boyfriend angrily requested for my doctor to come there urgently. Unfortunately he wasn’t available on that day. Another one came. Apologized and said that he needed to confirm if there were more and if it had developed to an infection. When he tried reaching for me I started to panic and just kicked in the air. I was so traumatized I didn’t want anyone to touch me there. I just wanted to be left alone.

Then came a nurse, that stopped helping the doctor and came around by me. She started speaking softly to me and patting my head as they do with small kids. Then she said that everything would be alright and that they were not going to hurt me. She was the one who started to touch me first and then I allowed the doctor. She was everything that I needed and more. She was great. I’m really grateful and wished that I was in better shape then to remember her name to thank her properly. Some things are still a blur.

I was fine. Nothing else was left behind. And I started to feel better. An hour later I was already able to walk and from there onwards I quickly improved. I felt so relieved that I didn’t really care about anything else.

On the day that we were leaving, the nurses that were present in my labour and were requested to leave the room, came to speak with us. They said that everything that happened was really not normal, my doctor was not right in pushing for a natural birth and that I had been very strong and courageous. After feeling like crap, I was relieved that I wasn’t the weak person I thought I was.

My boyfriend wanted to pursue a complaint regarding what happened on the labour and the gauze pads that had been left in me. I really didn’t. I was happy enough. My daughter was fine and I was fine. Hey I could even walk! Everything was going to be fine. And it really was. Few days after I was back to normal. Nothing hurt anymore and all things resumed their natural course. I was not traumatized in the sense that no one could touch me, but I sure as hell don’t want to have another natural birth.

I was lucky actually. My labour was horrible but I was ok and my daughter was perfectly ok afterwards. The gauze pads were forgotten in me but they left my body by themselves and I didn’t get an infection. I could actually understand why he had left them there. He must have been terrible tired as well, and there was blood everywhere. He is a human being after all.

Even though I don’t actually agree with his natural way of thinking, I really liked him and he was with me all the time.

I still felt helpless though. But my boyfriend probably felt like that even more. I was begging and crying for him to help me. And in the end he was the one that also had to hurt me by grabbing my legs. It must have been awful.

 

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