Where do you take one of the world’s biggest family game franchises that has already sold an estimated 125m copies worldwide?
The Sims has established a huge fanbase covering people of all ages and both genders, thanks to its mixture of house creation and life simulation gameplay.
But with three full games and over 20 expansion packs already adding everything from jobs and holidays to pets and even clubbing, where does it go from here?
Back in time, of course. EA is ditching the modern-day setting of The Sims in exchange for the princes, paupers and potions of the middle ages.
The Sims Medieval is a standalone game for PC and Mac that allows players to create their own heroes and send them on epic quests for good, evil or romance, while an entire kingdom can be built from scratch.
But far from restricting the user by just allowing them to control a number of ordinary families, Medieval lets gamers command a range of personalities with their own quests.
These include the knight, physician, monarch, blacksmith and spell-conjuring wizard, along with the bard, priest and merchant. Players can even control a spy to slip poison into a drink or steal from the kingdom’s coffers.
Each completed task rewards users with skill points which can be used to upgrade their hero’s skills and attributes.
Once gamers have built up a sizeable kingdom, they can expand elsewhere in the land. The Sims Medieval features its own diplomatic system that allows gamers to negotiate treaties or declare wars with surrounding kingdoms.
Instead of The Sims’ traditional houses and shops, Medieval encourages users to build castles, churches, towers and workshops. They can even place their least favoured subjects in the stocks for a royal ridiculing.
The Sims’ in-game computers have been replaced with blacksmiths’ anvils, and instead of kitchen cookers there are now roasting spits and cooking pots hanging over fires.
With its new time setting, quests and a whole new kingdom to control, The Sims Medieval represents a refreshing change for EA’s colossal life game franchise. This new direction promises to pull in fans of the series and newcomers.
Tome of life
EA is offering The Sims fans a Medieval Limited Edition exclusively with GAME that includes the following:
- DLC content consisting of three throne rooms and ten outfits
- Game sketch and art booklet
- A3 poster
- 3D card artwork
- A map of the in-game kingdom
- CD soundtrack