Sunshine Blogger: Noalyn’s Questions

Thanks, Noalyn, for nominating my story Whisper for the Sunshine Blogger award! Noalyn is the author of The Sims of NoaLyn, where you can find the Llewellyn legacy, which is a joy to read!

You can find my nominations on the Sunshine Blogger acceptance page.

Here are my answers to Noalyn’s questions:

  1. What inspired you to write about your Sims?
    I was so inspired by the TS2 stories, especially those by Candi and ephemeraltoast. I started writing a legacy in TS2, which I posted on the TS2 site. I don’t think anyone read it, and then I had so much fun playing the game, that I lost interest in writing. In TS3, I posted a few legacies on the TS3 site, but they were both deleted by site admin. I guess someone objected to the content–which, if I recall, was pretty tame, but there were a few innuendos. With TS4, I really wanted to finally complete a legacy, so I figured that if I wrote it, I would be inspired to complete it. I had no idea that I would enjoy writing it so much or that it would lead me to write so many stories!
  2. Do you easily get attached to your characters? Whom did you get attached to the most?
    Oh, yes! I love them all so much, even the Townies whom I never play. Willow, the gen 4 spare in Goofy Love, was, perhaps, the first TS4 Sim that I loved the most. I adored her and truly grieved after Grim came for her. I felt like she was a friend when she was in game.
  3. If you could choose one skill of any of the Sims games to be at “Level 10” in real life, what would it be and why?
    I would love to have level 10 painting and piano! In my life, my painting skills seem to be stuck at about level 4-6, and piano, though I’ve played most my life, is about 6-8. I’d love to excel at both! Maybe when I retire, I’ll spend more time painting and practicing. After all, they say it takes time, more than talent!
  4. Do you play with Mods/Custom Content?
    Yes! I use MC Command Center to prevent culling of Sims, ghosts, and relationships! I didn’t use it during the legacy, but once the legacy stopped–and once the patch introduced relationship culling–I found it indispensable!
  5. What was your first Sims game ever and how did you come to it?
    I came to Sims2 Pets through the ad campaign they had for it back then. I remember that my boyfriend and I went to Best Buy and picked up the base game, University, and Pets all in one day. We were hooked!
  6. What was your playstyle like back then – what is it like now?
    I was such a micro-manager back then. I think at the time that I very much wanted to control my life, and so playing Sims allowed me to exert the level of control that I wished I could extend to my life. Then, while I was playing Sims 2, I began reading articles about loosening up control in life. At the same time, I started noticing how amazing Candi’s Sims were in her Uglacy–and the amazing things they did happened when she let them be more autonomous. I never really mastered autonomous play back then: my Sims would just stand around unless I directed them to do something. My Sims 3 play was very goal-oriented: I was always having them skill, race around the world, meet other Sims, decorate homes, give styling advice, and so on. So, not much autonomy there. Sims 4 brought me to a very different style. Of course, eight years and lots of life events passed between playing Sims 2 and Sims 4. By this time, I’ve pretty much given up trying to control my life. So when playing Sims, it felt natural to play with a loose and free style. I’ve been amazed at the actions and self-direction displayed by Sims. At first, I thought that it was just Sims 4 Sims who were amazing autonomously. But I’ve since started playing Whisper, a TS3 ISBI, and though I direct the torch-holder quite a bit, the other Sims, whom I can’t control, really surprise and amaze me with their autonomous choices. I’m thinking now that Sims are very responsive to the Simmer’s style of gameplay, so as I play more autonomously, the Sims step into the freedom this provides.
  7. Do you speak with/to your Sims while sitting at the computer?
    Sometimes. I tend to do this more when I’m not playing for something I’ll be writing. When I play a game that is part of a story, I am writing while I play, narrating as the game progresses.
  8. Do you have a schedule for playing/posting?
    For some reason, I only enjoy playing Sims 4 in the evening or at night. Sims 3 I can play any time, and for much longer periods. I love to write in the morning, but during the summer, my gardening schedule prevents that, so I’ll write weekend afternoons or evenings. I really can’t and don’t schedule my posts. I try to keep the writing in pace with the game-play, so I’m not more than two or three chapters ahead in the game, but with my TS3 ISBI, I’m playing about three to six chapters ahead. I think I enjoy playing TS3 more!
  9. Have you ever killed Sims on purpose? And on the other hand – have you had Sims die by accident?
    No! And I won’t. I’ve got a pretty strict ethical code I follow when playing Sims: I call it my prime directive, and it consists of playing them in the way that helps them achieve their highest potential in their lives, while giving them the freedom to direct their own lives as much as possible. There’s a bit of give and take between achieving potential and self-direction. I try for each Sim to live a rich and authentic life. And yes, some Sims have died by accident. In my TS3 ISBI, a few visiting Sims died: of starvation or old age.
  10. If such accidents happen in the save for you story, do you include them or do you start playing from the beginning again and try to prevent them?
    In early TS2 and Ts3 days, I’d nearly always “groundhog day” the game if something bad happened, exiting without saving and starting from before the “bad” event. Then once, in TS2, I played through a Sim getting fired from his job, and I noticed that he became a much kinder and more thoughtful Sim after that experience. So I began to occasionally play through tough events. Then, in TS4, since Goofy Love was intended to be a Pinstar-compliant legacy, I played through every challenging event. Now, I see how much these events add to our games, our stories, and our Sims’ experiences. I wouldn’t want to do without any of the challenging times–just like in life!
  11. What object/feature in the Sims do you overuse and what none at all?
    My Sims probably overuse the piano, easel, and observatory–though they’d say that they use them “just the right amount, vadish!” My Sims hardly ever use the cameras!