Everyday, on the official Italian forum an extract from the game lessons commented by Eden (The Sims Italy's community manager) is published.
We will update on daily basis with every lesson released.
Text and pictures are published with the authorization of the author. Translations of interactions and features are literal.
The first article is about Ambitions, a new feature of The Sims Medieval. Ambitions are the very beginning of a new reign. Every time you start a new game, in fact, you have to choose one for your kingdom.
At first, the only ambition available is called â€śNew beginningsâ€ť, but there are 12 of them you can unlock by reaching silver raking in one or more lower level ambitions. A few examples: â€śFilled Coffersâ€ť, â€śNo quests for the wearyâ€ť, â€śHard Workersâ€ť, â€śWealthy populaceâ€ť, â€śEfficient Expanderâ€ť. To fulfill your ambition, you have a limited amount of Quest Point, that you spend when you start a new quest. You'll have to choose your missions wisely, evaluating both their â€śpriceâ€ť in Quest Point and their rewards.
Once you've spent all your QP, the book of ambitions will show you how well you've done. The highest ranking is gold.
A fun fact: if you have only 2 QP left, you can start any mission you want, even if its price is higher (the â€śpriceâ€ť varies from 1 to 4 points). At this time, you can choose whether you want to go back to the Main Menu and select a new ambition or keep playing. By choosing the latter, you will have two special missions: â€śNew worldâ€ť and â€śFree timeâ€ť.
â€śNew worldâ€ť allows you to choose a hero of your current ambitions and make it the monarch of your next game. This option is great when you're attached to a specific character.
â€śFree timeâ€ť allows you to play with your heroes freely, without quests or responsibilities to follow. It's some kind of â€śsandboxâ€ť play, great if you want to play like The Sims.
Despite The Sims 3, characters in Medieval have only two need bards, for Energy and Hunger, that affect the Sim's behavior as well as his/her mood. In the Middle Ages, in fact, there were less primary needs. There weren't all those comforts modern Sims have!
This allows players to focus on the quests without spending too much time taking care of your Sim's needs â€“ although they're still important.
If the bars are red, your Sims will have hard times completing his current quest.
The energy bar decreases slowly, and if you don't let your Sims take a nap or sleep, s/he will pass out and sleep on the ground. Some objects are more comfortable than others, so keep this in mind when buying a new bed. Wizards don't necessarily have to sleep, and can increase their energy meditating or drinking special potions.
The Hunger bar should always be monitored: if a Sim doesn't eat for a long time, s/he gets a negative moodlet and can also die of starvation.
Medieval Sims can cook a wide range of meals, according to the ingredients they have. If you're tired of the everyday soup, at the market you can buy meat or fish or go hunting/fishing.
Hygiene was not really important at the time, so there isn't a proper need bar. However, luckiest Sims can have a bath, receiving a positive moodlet. Also, there are no needs for the bladder, but this doesn't mean that medieval Sims don't need to empty it at times. To do it, they can use their pot..
The Create-a-Sim screen appears every time you create a new kingdom. The look of each character it's up to you, and they can be male or female. The CAS works like The Sims 3, but the look is definitely medieval-ish.
You can start from scratch creating a new Sim or editing one of the pre-made characters the game offers.
The first thing you have to do is choosing a name and a surname, voice, body shape (muscles and weight) and a skin color for your Sim. Age is not selectable, as you can create only adults in CAS. There is a slider called â€śAge modifierâ€ť, however, that allows you to change your Sims' skin, giving him/her an older/younger look.
There are also babies and children, but they are born only in the game and cannot be created in CAS.
There isn't makeup, as it would be quite unlikely for a game set in the Middle Ages, but there is a slider that allows you to change the complexion of your Sim, increasing or decreasing the redness of the cheeks and other areas of the face.
Everything described so far, as well as the face features editors, allows you to create realistic characters, even more than The Sims 3 â€“ and, if you want so, even resembling yourself or your friends.
A small fact: you can create pointed ears!
The gorgeous outfits of the time are customizable with the Create a Style tool.
There are no different categories, but Sims wear a nightgown when they go to sleep. Of course, you can change your character's look while you play.
Both the hairstyle (with or without crowns and other hats) and the clothing vary according to the hero you're playing with. Some hairdos are really elaborate, with jewels.
But that's not all folks! In order to create a personality for your Sim, you have to choose two traits and a fatal flaw. I'll explain in details during the next chapters of this column..
Yes! Sims in Medieval can fight with swords and kill other Sims!
This weapon can be used only by the knight, the monarch and the spy. I recommend you to get high-quality sword and armor from the blacksmith, if you want to make sure you win all the duels you'll face during the game.
In order to become great swordsmen, you'll have to exercise a lot using the apposite dummy.
When you want to fight for real, you'll have to click on another Sim and select â€śFight friendlyâ€ť, â€śThreaten for moneyâ€ť, â€śFightâ€ť, â€śFight to deathâ€ť. The latter is also the most dangerous and you should choose it only if you know you have many chances to succeed.
You should always keep an eye on the concentration bar: if it's low, your chances to win will be reduced.
Fun fact: if the only option available is â€śThreaten for moneyâ€ť, it means that the other Sim can't fight. It's a way to mug other sims. Yes, medieval Sims can do this too!
When two Sims start dueling, up in the right of the screen a small window with health bars appears. When these decrease to zero, the Sim will be defeated, during a â€śfriendly fightâ€ť, or dead, if they're dueling to death. As you can imagine, Sims who are into duels are subjects to wounds. To heal them, you'll have to buy a potion or go to the physician. If the wounds are deep and serious, your Sim will fight less well.
You can win a duel even if the resistance bar decrease to the minimum. More experienced Sims suffer less from this.
Armors or heavy swords or even some moves can affect your resistance in a negative way. Dueling is very tiring, so get some rest before getting into a fight again.
Heroes are one of the key features in The Sims Medieval. There are 10 of them: monarch, spy, knight, physician, warlock, blacksmith, merchant, Peterian priest, Jacobian priest, bard.
At the beginning of the game, the only available hero is the monarch. Every time you unlock a new building, you have to create its hero (male or female, as you prefer).
These are characters you can play only when requested by a quest. A Sim does not become a hero after some quests, it is created like this, although at the beginning s/he doesn't have peculiar features, if not the ones of his/her profession.
Heroes can get married with other heroes or normal Sims, start quests, practice their abilities to reach new levels in their job, work and earn money to furnish their houses.
Everyday, they have to complete two responsibilities, that is, two tasks regarding their professions. If they don't do them, they can be sent to the stocks. They also have to pay taxes once in a while, spending money with carrier pigeons.
Improving in their professions is very important in order to increase your experience up to level 10, unlocking many interactions. In The Sims Medieval we can follow our Sims at work.
The building of each hero is both his/her working place and home. This is usually a small room located in the upper floor. In the Middle Ages, in fact, working was very important and was the main part of the life, while houses were often a small room with the basics. Of course, the monarch's house was made up of several rooms.
Although The Sims Medieval is more focused on quests, between a mission and the other, our heros have also time to create a family.
As anticipated in the previous chapter, in the game we can create only adult Sims.
Babies are born and become children, but they stop at this age. There are no teenagers or elders. So, you cannot die of old age.
To create a family, two Sims have to get married and procreate. The latter, however, does not imply the first one. Unlike The Sims 3, there is no "Try for a baby" interaction, but only "Woohoo". No birth control then! You should have guessed it, it's the Middle Ages! When two Sims woohoo, there are always high chances of getting pregnant.
Moms-to-be see their bodies changing and suffer from nausea. They cannot be sent to the stocks or duel, as these are thing you shouldn't to when expecting. Newborns need only food and love, and are provided with a wooden crib.
After a while, the baby will become a child.
Like the real life, children are not playable and live autonomously, although they live in the same house of their parents. Remember to buy a bed for them and even some toys, like a doll or a teddybear.
Since you are in the Middle Ages, kids do not go to school, but they can help the family by bringing home goods from the forest or buying things at the market.
There is an option that allows to see the child's inventory.
As for the wedding and the divorce, I'll give you more information in the next articles.
See you next week!
Stocks and arrest
Hard times for our Medieval Sims! If they don't complete their tasks or aren't welcomed by the king, they can be arrested or sent to the stocks...or condemned to die in the pit!
The king is the only one in the reign who can arrest whoever he wants, but he can be judget too, if he doesn't look after his business.
Once someone is under arrest, the constable will get him/her to the Judgement Pit. Nobody can escape, not even if busy or if the stocks are full. His memory is great, and he will find your Sim, sooner or later.
Sims sent to the stocks will remain there until they serve out, although the spy can break some padlocks and escape.
If the king wants, he can free someone from the stocks.
Sims sent to the pit have to jump in the cleft, where a savage beast lives. A very few Sims can survive its jaws.
You can hope to save your life if you have particular traits, a huge experience and if you have made friends with the beast before.
Do you think this is too cruel for a Sims game? It would, if it was The Sims 3, but in this case is The Sims Medieval, and the game mirrors the time, to give more realism to the player. Everything is done with a lot of humor, typical of The Sims.
Spells and magic
In a game like this, you couldn't miss magic. The wizard, in fact, is one of the 10 heroes available, that you can unlock together with the Tower. This building is made up of three stories. At the ground floor there is the lab with the table, the book and the crystal ball. On the first floor there is the house of the wizard, with a kitchen, a table, a bathtub, a pot and a wardrobe. What about the bed? Wizards don't need it, as they can restore their energy meditating or drinking potions.
On the last floor there are the library and the archive, with everything they need to study.
Of course, if you wish so, you can customize the furnishing anytime or place the items you prefer.
As wizards improve their abilities and reach new levels, they can learn spells and create potions or magic objects of any kind. They can collect herbs and study the runes. They can sell potions, tonics, magic items and herbs.
To learn a spell, you have to use the book of magics. By reading the list of spells, you can see the necessary amount of runes and the effects of the spell itself.
Once you've learned the correct runes sequence, you can cast the spell.
Here's a short list of some of the spells a wizard can do:
- Curse: the victims will fail at basically anything
- Miasma: the victims will get terribly sick
- Healing: the victims will restore a complete health.
Levels of experience
In The Sims Medieval, each hero has 10 levels of experience.
As your Sims improve in their professions, they improve their capability and unlock new interactions and abilities.
For example, an experienced spy can stel the oblations - a newly created spy can't. Wizards can create new potions and priests can convert many more people. Knight learn new moves and so on.
Experience points can be collected studying, creating objects, completing quests and everyday tasks.
Each hero's level of experience can be monitored in the Simology tab. By hovering your mouse on the bar, you can see the current benefits for your Sims.
Some quests require a well-experienced Sim. Remember to take care of your heroes' skills, if you want to be part in the most interesting missions!
Quests are the main feature introduced by The Sims Medieval. The game has nearly 100 of them, and each can be developed in a different way, according to the hero you want to use. As you enlarge your kingdom and add new heroes and buildings, the number of available quests increases more and more.
Once you open the book of quests, you can find a list of the quests available. Each on is tagged by an icon that describes the nature of the quest (romantic, artistic, action..) and has a short introduction that explains what you have to do.
Here's a few examples: The fisherman's challenge, King for a day, The peasants' riot, A political marriage, Heir to the throne, The happy love doctor, Games of war, The farce, etc (translations are literal).
After you've selected a mission, you have to choose the approach you want to use and the primary hero. In some cases, you'll need a secondary hero that can help the main one when necessary.
For example, the "Peasants' Riot" quest can be undertaken with a pacific or drastic approach.
If you choose for the pacific one, you can send your bard to soften the hearts of the rebels with his music, or a merchant, to bribe them with money.
If you have a bloodthirsty soul, instead, and you think that sending someone to the Pit of Judgement can be a nice way to avoid further riots, the right approach for you is "Suppress". In this case, you'll have to make use of the spy or the knight.
The quest panel is very useful and appears once you have started a quest, showing the active Sim, what s/he has to do and how well s/he's doing.
On the right of each active Sim there are the quest's tasks, that is, what you have to do in order to reach the following step.
The performance bar determines how well you're doing. The higher the level, the best your rewards. Eventually, you'll get a reward and will be able to start another quest.
Today's topic is very romantic and concerns your Sims' wedding.
After some time spent flirting with a Sim, you can decide to propose to him/her selecting the option "Engage to marry". When engaged, Sims can decide to get married in many different places. If one of the two is following a religion, they can get married in the church.
The officiant - an old man dressed in white - will descend from the sky to celebrate the wedding of the couple.
Getting married has some benefits: the couple receives a wedding gift from the king and your hero's salary is increased, as s/he will have someone else to take care of.
Sometimes, your Sims realize they've made a mistake and shouldn't have marry at all.
If they haven't consummated, they can decide to annul the wedding with the proper interaction.
If they did consummated their wedding, instead, they have to ask to a priest for the divorce.
To do so, Jacobians have to pay a certain amount of money, while Peterans can do it for free, after praying for a while.
Hate for the whales
Today I'm going to talk about an odd topic, that is, the hate for the whales.
In The Sims Medieval, in fact, there is a trait called "A whale ate my parents".
They say that Sims with this trait have lost their parents due to a whale when they were still newborns, and that the pain for this loss has turned into hate for this sea giants.
These Sims go often to the dock and yell at the sea to express their pain. The braver can also take a ship and go to kill the hated whale.
To do so, you have to buy a ship and a harpoon at the town's shop.
Whale's meat is really appreciated by Medieval Sims, who love to cook it in different ways. Maybe because they have all lost their parents for whales??
There are two religions in The Sims Medieval: Peteran and Jacoban. They both worship the same God, "The Watcher", that is the player himself, that controls them and knows everything about their lives. Today I'm going to talk about the two religious heroes.
Jacoban Priests are usually rich and manage the business of their church rigorously. Their place of worship is huge and opulent.
Their special abilieties are preaching sermons, converting, intimidating fold, reflecting about the Watcher, giving the Watcher's blessing and bless the well's water.
Sims who follow this religion have a strict moral code to follow, in order to avoid punishment.
Peteran priests are ascetics devoted to their belief. They preach compassion and dedition, and try to teach people to live under the Watcher's rules.
Their church is simple and humble.
Their abilities are: preaching sermons, evangelizing, converting, praying, blessing the well's water, studying, writing, giving the Watcher's approval and getting a positive moodlet called "The Watcher is near" when around their church.
Sul sul..and may the Watcher be with you! Oh well, it's you!
During the Middle Ages there was no TV, and Sims used to go to the tavern to watch the Bard playing. When playing, you will often notice Sims danding in a funny way around this charming hero.
Bards can play the lute, write poems and play on stage.
They draw inspiration from the world and the Sims around them, thanks to a special interaction of their profession.
When they use it, in their inventory appear icons regarding what kind of inspiration they got (nature, food, love..).
Those icon can be used when creating a poem, to which we can also give a name.
Bards can play their works on stage and choose a Sim to stooge for him.
Working is one of the most important things in the game, and each Sim has some responsibilities to follow for his job. For example, the physician has to create potions and cure Sims, while the blacksmith has to forge weapons and swords.
Everyday, our Sims have to complete two tasks within a limited amount of time. If they do, their concentration increases, and so does the overall quest performance.
If they don't, their focus decreases, and if this goes on for too long, the constable can arrest them and send them to the stocks or the pit.
Hurry up with your missions then, if you want to avoid troubles and make your day even more fruitful!
Medieval Sims have moodlets too, just like modern Sims.
These indicators appear in the moodlets panel and are colored in green if positive or red if negative. By hovering your mouse on them, you can read the reason why your Sim is happy or sad.
The happier they are, the higher their quest performance. After a while you will know what makes your Sims' focus better. For example, a relaxing bath or a chat with a friend are two great strategies to improve your character's concentration and get more from the game.
Don't miss the good things of life...even in the Middle Ages, Sims love to have fun and feel depressed when they have a bad day...
Medieval Sims have traits too.
As in the Middle Ages Sims were "simpler", they have only three of them, not five.
One of them is negative and it's called "Fatal Flaw". It affects your Sim negatively, and can make some quests harder.
However, Sims can get rid of their fatal flaw by completing a quest that allows them to turn their weakness into a legendary trait.
This mission is secret, but I wrote about it on Edenstyle a few days ago, in my interview to Rachel Bernstein: http://www.edenstylemagazine.it/the-sims-medieval/intervista-su-the-sims-medieval.html
Traits influence every aspect of a Sim's life: the way they act, interact with other people and the world, their choices of life. They also give special interactions.
Traits are listed in the Simology tab and you can choose them in the Create a Sim screen. To learn other Sims' traits, you'll have to talk with them and look at the relationships panel.
A few traits: chivalrous, eloquent, rustic and fool.
A few fatal flaws: bloodthirsty, compulsive gambler, licentious.
Although The Sims Medieval is focused on quests, there is a rich catalogue that allows you to play with your home and working place's furniture.
Each time your Sim earns money in his profession or thanks to a quest, the amount of golden Simoleons available increases, and you can use them to buy something nice for his house.
In Furnish Mode you can find items arranged by function or collection. There are also wallpapers and floors.
The style is definitely medieval-ish and you can change the color of each piece of furniture with the Create a Style tool.
There are canopy beds, chests, bathtubs, pots, fireplaces, music box, statues, thrones and much more.
Can't wait to furnish your king's palace? Just hold on a few more days!
The Sims' God, that is the player himself, is called "The Watcher" because is the one who knows and sees everything.
The tools Medieval offers the Watcher are several, and there are many ways you can interact with them: visual controllers, mouse and keyboard.
According to the mode you're using, the options can change.
There are four modes regarding the visual: The Eye of the Watcher, Follow my Sim, Interior, Exploration.
Here they are:
- Eye of the Watcher: takes the visual to the center of the kingdom. It's great when you want to cross the whole realm quickly. There are controllers for rotating the view.
- Follow my Sim: links the visual to your selected Sim and moves along with him/her. The best way to find your Sims in the kingdom! There are rotation and zoom controllers.
- Interior: gives a perspective view of the buildings' interior. It's the only way for you to see where your Sims live. You can rotate, scroll and zoom the view.
- Exploration: it's a limitless mode that allows you to explore the kingdom. It's great if you want to see the sunrise on the beach or look at the kingdom from the gate. There are rotation, scrolling and zoom controllers.
See you tomorrow with the last chapter of this article!
Only one day and The Sims Medieval will be available: why don't we celebrate with a Medieval lunch?
Although the cheapest and easiest meal is soup, the game allows you to cook many delicious recipes combining several ingredients.
Forget about home deliveries, they will be invented only in a few centuries!
If you want to prepare something speciale for your family, you can go grocery shopping at the market or get the ingredients on your own going hunting or fishing.
The most common meats are boar, bear and whale.
Food can be cooked in the oven, on a spit or in a cauldron, all things you can find in Furnish mode.
The spit is good to grill meat, the over is perfect for bread and pies. The caulderon is great for soups and stews.
By clicking on these items, you can choose the option "Prepare meal" and see the list of recipes available and the ingredients needed.
Food can be collected in your inventory for a quick snack. Be careful: don't forget it as it can get rotten and make your Sim sick. Meals can be also stored in a cupboard, and will not spoil.
A side note: Sims eat with their own hands!
The article is now finished. The game is going to be on the shelf tomorrow and you'll be able to try this incredible new chapter of the Sims!