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Sims 2: Pets
9.0 / 10
fur is finally flying for the Sims in The Sims 2 Pets, the latest
expansion for The Sims 2 franchise. Surprisingly, it took four
expansions for Maxis to instill furry and feathered friends into the
Sims’ household. There was a similar expansion for the original Sims
franchise in The Sims Unleashed, and The Sims 2 Pets follows much of the
same formula as that expansion did in bringing felines, canines, birds
and a Womrat into Sims’ households. Many may be asking what a Womrat
is: it’s a completely fictitious hybrid, described as a genetically
engineered rodent-like creature. It’s basically a guinea pig-looking
furball of fun.
There are even wandering lycanthropes (that’s werewolves to the common
folk) roaming around the game, who’ll make a visit from time to time
(they’re the menacingly large, black-coated wolf-like creatures with
the eerily incandescent green eyes (although they’re friendly as can
be once you shower them with a little attention). Through download, even
actress/singer (or is that singer/actress?) Hillary Duff can be a
playable character, complete with her pet Chihuahua Lola.
Unlike Open for Business and University, two earlier The Sims 2
expansions, The Sims 2 Pets doesn’t bring what may be considered much
“new” gameplay to The Sims 2 universe. Although The Sims Unleashed
already had introduced pets into the lives of the Sims, The Sims 2 Pets
expands on the concept, with remarkably lifelike qualities to the
pets’ behavior and interaction with their owner Sims.
The Sims 2 gamers will be overjoyed to finally have their very own
virtual pets on their PC.
To get your new pets, you can either design or adopt one. As when making
Sims, you can design and create some rather bizarre pets with many
unique features, such as weirdly colored coats and furs in shades never
before seen (or
never to be seen) in the animal universe. And you can of course, simply
adopt pets from the pet adoption service with a simple phone call. If
you have more than one pet of a particular species, as long as you have
a male and a female you can actually breed them yourself (with a little
WooHoo in the pet house) to create unique lineages.
And PETA shouldn’t worry, because if you have a litter of kittens or
puppies and just can’t handle caring for too many pets at once, you
can give them up for adoption, thus eliminating the possibility of
animal neglect (and the inevitable PETA protest outside your Sims’
Once you actually get your pet, you’ll need to interact with them to
teach them learned behaviors such as to be playful, to get housebroken,
stay clean or stay off furniture. There are also the typical pet
commands to instruct, like rolling over, speaking and shaking for dogs.
This also helps build your relationship with each pet, but that’s not
quite as important as giving them love. Stroke their head, feed them
treats and praise them. It all goes a long way to building a devoted
following from your pets.
However, there are times you’re going to have to scold them, because
they aren’t always on their best behavior. They may leave behind
“messes” in the wrong places (that you’ll have to clean up) or
tear up your furniture. A good admonishment will help them learn to stop
those “bad” offenses. And if you don’t have the time to teach them
yourself, an Obedience Trainer, for a price, will gladly train your pets
the proper way of behaving.
Of course, training and interaction with your pets doesn’t always go
as planned, because your pets do have a mind of their own. They’re not
simply furry automations. They will react on their own, based on their
disposition and personalities. Genius pets will act differently than the
doofus, as will the independent kitty compared to the friendly feline.
There are five factors involved in each pet’s personality, and each of
the five affects how your pet will behave.
What’s amazing is how lifelike the pets are, both in the way the react
toward Sims and the amazing detail that goes into their animated
reactions and behaviors as far as any interactions with other Sims or
pets. It’ s really incredible how true-to-life the pets act, and
that’s one of the primary reasons that this is such an enjoyable and
addictive expansion to The Sims 2.
Don’t think that your pets won’t earn their keep, either. They can
earn some serious Simoleons for you, too. Yes, there are jobs that will
employ your pets, from security positions to showbiz, with a steady
paycheck for the household.
While there’s not too many new items added in The Sims 2 Pets for your
Sims to use, there are plenty of pet pieces added to your inventory,
from food bowls to animal housing. One gameplay feature added is the
ability to not only invite Sims over to your Sims home one at a time,
but to actually invite entire Sims families to come over and visit.
No, it doesn’t tread new territory that hasn’t been explored in a
previous expansion, but nonetheless The Sims 2 Pets turns out to
surprisingly be the most engaging and addictive expansion yet for The
Sims 2. How engaging and addictive? This reviewer needed to buy a second
copy of the game so that all The Sims 2 Pets players in the family could
get equal opportunity playing the game on one of our two PCs. Spending
time bonding with Sims pets was that popular in my domicile. For those
that love the domesticated animal kingdom, The Sims 2 Pets expansion
brings the new dimension of delightful animal interactivity into the
lives of Sims 2 gamers.