Having sold well over 150 million copies since its debut twelve years ago, EA’s The Sims is the best-selling videogame series of all time on the PC. If you’ve never played a Sims game before, the concept is brilliantly simple. You are tasked with designing your own set of virtual people – families, friends and enemies alike – before placing them into a household… and what you do from there is completely up to you. You can care for your Sims and push them to excel, or instead you can plague them with all manner of different calamities. For example, if one of your Sims wants to be a famous sports star, you can help them to work on their athletic skills, and then find a job for them at the local sports track. The Sims is a relaxing and open-ended game, which means that it never pressures you into completing specific goals if you don’t want to.
You get to choose a total of five traits for each Sim that you create, and these traits will determine how your Sim will behave, what they’re good at, and what things they like and dislike. The central focus of the game is always on your own household, but you can also enter other houses in the neighbourhood to toy with other Sims too. The Sims series has a vast selection of optional expansion backs available for it, enabling you to do things like adapt to the different seasons of the year in The Sims 3: Seasons, get spooky with werewolves and witches in The Sims 3: Supernatural, or deck your Sims out in all of the latest designer clothing with The Sims 3: Diesel Stuff Pack.