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‘The Sims Mobile’ puts a fun, millennial spin on a popular classic

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App Attack is a weekly series where we search the App Store and Google Play Store for the best apps of the week. Check out App Attack every Sunday for the latest.

Ever wish you could dig up some of those old PC games you spent hours playing as a kid? This week, we have an app that will bring back the nostalgia and doesn’t require firing up that old desktop.

The Sims Mobile — available on iOS and Android — is a portable take on the classic game, but with more of a millennial spin to it. For starters, the characters are far more customizable than in the past, with tons of different style options and distinguishing features. They still speak their familiar gibberish, but their thought bubbles now include emojis, which make it a bit easier to follow along.

In the beginning, I started with one Sim and a “fixer-upper” home that I could add to little by little as I earned more rewards by completing different tasks. After choosing how I wanted my Sim to look and setting up my home with some furniture, I was prompted to then land a job —  as a barista at a local coffee shop.

This time around, you can also choose different traits you want your Sim to have. This includes generous, ambitious, flirty, lucky, and more. As you progress through “life” in the game, your Sim will be able to earn more traits along the way. The same type of customization applies to friendships you make. When my Sim made a new friend, I was able to choose the type of friendship they would have and what they would bond over. For example, one friendship my Sim had was centered around their love for music — known as “Soundtrack of Soul.”

While I haven’t actually played the Sims since I was in elementary school, I realized playing it as an adult who was now controlling another adult felt weird. When you’re a kid, it’s easy to enjoy a game that doesn’t mirror your reality — such as finding a job, earning enough money to support your lifestyle, socializing even though you’re extremely exhausted, and well, you get the point. Rather than playing haphazardly, I was suddenly thinking far more into the decisions I made for my Sim than ever before.

Regardless, The Sims Mobile is still as enjoyable and addicting as all of the versions that came before it. While it felt a bit weird to use a touch-screen instead of a mouse to click around for each action, the game still mimics the same controls. You’re able to tap on each Sim to pull up specific actions, and you’re also able to move around furniture and choose different colors as you normally would.

As far as plot, there’s no new point to the game — you’re still there to simply help your Sim truly flourish. But with different actions on your To Do List that refresh each day, it definitely kept me coming back to play more. As you cross each one off the list, you’re granted with more rewards that range from currency like Simoleons to SimCash. The game is free to play, but if you do start to get impatient there’s in-app purchases to get you further along.

In addition to your To Do List, your Sim has Quests it can complete as well. Some of the Quests include attending an event, adding a new piece of furniture to your home, or even switching up your appearance. By completing these, you’ll be able to earn more Sim money in order to purchase specific items.

Since the game is meant specifically for mobile, this does mean that you have the luxury of playing whenever and wherever. So if your Sim starts an event like a work shift or a birthday party, it’ll let you know that they can continue on their own and you can take a break for a bit — trust me, you might need it. Otherwise, you can make the break go by quicker by completing different actions and earning more rewards.

As I continued to advance through the levels, I eventually got to add a roommate to the roster. With your second Sim, you basically go through the exact same motions — find a job, settle in, make friends, and attend events. Before you know it, you’ll be juggling the lives of two different Sims, which can be a bit overwhelming at first but it also means the opportunity to earn double the rewards.

When it comes to graphics, The Sims Mobile still stays true to its quirky style but with a brighter and more refreshing upgrade. Even though the new version isn’t groundbreaking, it has the right amount of new customization features to make it exciting enough that you won’t feel like you’re playing mindlessly or endlessly. Coupled with the fact that it’s now available conveniently on your smartphone, you’ll find yourself checking more on your Sims than you do your social media feeds.

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Brenda Stolyar
Former Digital Trends Contributor
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