In what may be one of the most heart-breaking Sims-related experiments in a long time, Robin Burkinshaw created two Sims, Kev and his daughter Alice. They live in a house that looks like a park and live on free meals from work and school. They sleep on park benches. Alice is kind-hearted and a little dopey and her father is essentially insane – he has a horrible temper doesn’t react in normal ways (he called another Sim a son of a llama and then tried to kiss him to make up). He also hates kids.
As her father dislikes children, he hates sleeping next to her. In the morning, he’s always the first to wake, and he immediately throws a tantrum and wakes up Alice to tell her to leave the room. Alice understandably responds that they’re not in a room, and she doesn’t have anywhere to go. Then they argue, and Kev seems to blame Alice for every possible thing.
Not sad enough? Try this:
All adults in The Sims 3 have a lifetime wish. An ultimate goal that they want to achieve before the end of their life. Usually this is to reach the top of a particular career path, or become the best at a particular set of skills. When you create an adult Sim, you’re given a selection of lifetime wishes to choose from, which change depending on that Sim’s personality traits.
When I made Kev, choosing a lifetime wish was a little difficult. I knew that he was never going to be successful in a career, which meant that almost all of the options the game offered me weren’t going to be possible. The only lifetime wish available to him that I thought he could aspire towards while still remaining homeless was to become a ‘heartbreaker’. He wants to be the boyfriend of 10 different sims.
So while Alice is asleep on a bench somewhere, I send Kev to the park to try to find him some romance. However, due to either his inappropriate or insane trait, he turns up without his clothes.
The entire thread is ostensibly real. Robin tried to recreate the situation of a homeless family and simply watched the game progress. The daughter grows into a teenager, the family fights, and they try endlessly to get ahead. The later events seem a little too well-coreographed to be real, but even if there’s a bit of nudging it’s a fascinating exercise.