The Sims 2 Pets Wii Review

May 29, 2010 by Chris Wigham  
Filed under Nintendo Wii, Reviews

Who’d have a pet? A dog destroys stuff for example, empties his or her bowel and bladder contents on your carpet, and acts as if they are completely deaf when objecting to your commands. But in all honesty it’s all worth it in the end as your dog hopefully turns into a well behaved joy, and this is something that The Sims 2 Pets perfectly emulates, which isn’t surprising as the popular series has always replicated real life in a more realistic manner than any soap opera.

Yes, The Sims, a franchise which most of us are familiar with such is the mass appeal and sales it has generated so far. Entries in the series are always snatched off the shelves with an eagerness that matches up to a snappy gator looking for a meaty hand. As the title suggests, this is basically The Sims 2 with the addition of some lovable furry friends.

Now where do we start with a game like The Sims? As even the console versions have proven themselves to be rich in features despite the lack of others (Sim aging, bringing children into the world etc) that have contributed to providing an enhanced experience on the PC. Well is there any better place to start than the beginning?

From the outset you can either opt to begin the game from scratch, designing your own Sims, pets and home, or you can move into an already occupied house with a roof readily over your head and most of the essentials already in place. With these foundations set you are then tasked with keeping your virtual people as happy as circus clowns by doing the menial and repetitive tasks that make life so wonderful (dish washing, hygiene, cooking food and eating it, going to work etc etc etc), meeting goals and basically emulating your own life outside the world of the Sims. Then, of course there’s those demanding, messy and fussy titular pets that just make your life more difficult (indeed, who’d have a pet).

Yes, you cannot expect to bring a new pet into the home without any mishaps, which means that training your animals to be well behaved is a must. When you catch one of your dogs digging for example you can give him or her a stern telling off, and over time your canine pal will learn that the garden isn’t a place to dig in. You can even train your pets with various commands, bond with them by playing and showing affection towards them and when a male and female animal are paired up they may even disappear off into privacy to produce some offspring (damn more trouble!). Like all the other elements in The Sims, it’s strangely compelling and warming to have a biddable and loving pet or two living amongst your Sims.

Life is all about multitasking and repetitions, and if you don’t keep your relationships up with your pets, they may do a runner and will never return to your unloving embrace. This means, that just like the Sims, you must monitor your pets moods, keep their food dishes full, make sure that there’s somewhere for your pets to lie down when they’re fancying some sleep, lavish them with attention to keep them from feeling lonely, and bath them to make sure they don’t begin smelling like strays.

The town square is a place where you can purchase or sell pets, and buy them treats and essentials (a better range then what’s included in the menu catalogue) with points earned by accomplishing good stuff with your animals. It’s also a place where your Sims or pets can socialise with others, which obviously keeps their social levels from dropping into nothingness.

Make no mistake about it this is indeed a Wii game that makes use of both the remote and nunchuck. You can either play in classic or direct control mode, with the former acting as a cursor that you can move around with the remote whilst the latter allows you to take – as the name suggests – direct control of any of your Sims. Obviously as a pointing device the remote does do the game some favours, but those expecting inventive use of the Wii’s controls should look elsewhere.

The Sims remains a rather acquired taste, although, whether you like the concept or not, the amount of intricate detail that has gone into the series is unarguable. Pets are a nice addition to the life of your Sims and require patience and time to turn them into the perfect pet (much like real life then). Fans of the popular series should be delighted with what’s on offer here.

8/10

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