The Sims franchise celebrates its twenty fourth anniversary this weekend, which is a much-needed reminder for me that as your resident Sims fanatic, I’ve acquired precisely a 12 months to plan some enjoyable protection for its twenty fifth (and that I ought to most likely use a few of that point to come back to phrases with the formal departure of the final vestiges of my youth, as somebody who’s been taking part in since virtually the very begin).
A twenty fourth birthday is definitely a milestone however feels much less monumental than the large quarter-century, in spite of everything; or perhaps that is simply my very own superior age speaking. However it did happen to me that we might mark this minor prelude to the large celebration by placing one query to mattress as soon as and for all: when, precisely, was The Sims first launched?
Again within the 12 months 2000 we weren’t practically as on-line as we at the moment are, however it wasn’t precisely the Darkish Ages, and it is not normally too troublesome to pin down cultural occasions with a excessive diploma of accuracy utilizing the documentation that survives from the time. Which is why it is bizarre that there are two competing launch dates for the 2000’s authentic launch of The Sims: January thirty first and February 4th.
And no, to deal with the plain query, I have never turn out to be confused due to just a few days’ hole between the sport’s launch into totally different markets. In these pre-digital obtain days when there was no want to fret about FOMO driving followers to piracy in the event that they needed to wait various hours after their pals on different continents began taking part in, many if not most video games had staggered launches, and certainly The Sims did launch in North America a few week forward of Europe (and everybody else was no less than three months or so behind that). The purpose of rivalry right here is that there are two just about equally believable candidates for the date of the unique North American launch.
Proponents of the February 4th date embrace the unofficial Sims Group web site, the big fansite SimsVIP, and and the fan-run Sims Wiki; in addition to Wikipedia, IMDB, the Encyclopædia Britannica, the Historical past Channel, and our personal sister website GamesIndustry.biz. And, for what it is price, a put up from the official Sims Twitter account again in 2015 means that The Sims staff themselves are of the opinion that February 4th is the proper date.
It is a robust case for February 4th alright, solely strengthened by the truth that the European launch date — which everybody can agree on — was February eleventh, which might make a pleasant neat week’s hole between the 2. However however, numerous web sites (that basically must know the date) authoritatively listing January thirty first as the large debut, together with SimsVIP (in a distinct article to the one linked above, simply to demonsrate the depths of this confusion) in addition to Metacritic, IGN, GameSpot, GameFAQs, and albeit nearly all of specialist gaming websites who enterprise an opinion on the matter.
To additional complicate issues, a Google seek for “when did The Sims 1 come out?” will return the confidently incorrect reply of October 4th 2002. This was really the date that The Sims’ first-ever compilation, The Sims Deluxe Version, outmoded the unique base recreation by completely bundling it with the contents of its first growth pack, however in any other case did not mark something notably noteworthy within the historical past of the collection. It definitely wasn’t both the start or the tip of the primary era of the franchise, which noticed its final main add-on in October 2003 and had its closing full assortment rerelease in November 2005. So principally, Google is not any assistance on this one, and I am going to chorus from additional remark lest I give in to the temptation to chunk the hand that feeds.
By no means one to waste a chance to uselessly decide over trivialities, although, I contacted EA for remark. Whereas they did not have a lot to say on the discrepancy aside from to notice that it was mildly attention-grabbing, they did verify for me that the proper launch date and due to this fact the official anniversary of The Sims franchise is February 4th.
So there you have got it: thriller solved. I believe at this level we’ll by no means be capable of hint the discrepancy again to its origins, however for those who squint, you kind of get a simplified have a look at how city legends that unfold by the early web can nonetheless impression on how we obtain the remnants of this data as uncontested truth right now, which could possibly be the idea for some kind of fashionable cautionary story.
However that is probably not the purpose, is it? The purpose is that we have now spent 24 years dwelling out each our most idealised lives and our most twisted gremlin fantasies throughout 4 principal instalments (with the long-awaited fifth now confirmed to be in improvement), to say nothing of round two dozen spin-offs. That is numerous reminiscences, numerous growth packs, and numerous Sims drowned in swimming pools within the title of curiosity, cruelty, or simply good quaint dramatic storytelling. So how about we increase a glass of alleged “juice” (as a result of calling it champagne would bump up the age score) and share a few of our favorite Sims reminiscences within the feedback in honour of the big-ish day?