Review: The Sims 3: Supernatural Expansion Pack (PC)
It’s hard being a Sim. Stuck in the same old boring dead-end job, you have a few kids and you fall dead after you discover your architect put walls around your pool. That’s why we have Expansion Packs. So your Sims can discover so much more to life and end up dying by an enchanted jellybean instead.
The Sims 3: Supernatural is the seventh expansion pack in the game’s third incarnation as a life simulation game. The new pre-made town is situated in Moonlight Falls, a town in the centre of a mountainous area and a wide ocean, like all the M. Night Shyamalan towns before it. All the residents are normal, friendly people. Or at least they appear normal.
No, they may just belong to one of the supernatural life states that includes Fairy, Witch, Ghost, Zombie and Werewolf. With appearances in earlier expansion packs, Vampires and Genies are also featured in the expansion, although the latter requires the Showtime expansion pack to be installed. Except for zombies, the remaining 7 of these life states are selectable on the Create-A-Sim (CAS) menu so you can start off a new witch family of your own.
Fairies and Witches are the two supernatural beings tied to magic, with a magic meter attached to their active UI. Fairies can cast auras and play tricks on others while Witches can cast spells and charms. Fairies have the ability to float themselves to places while Witches can use a broomstick as a mode of transport, as well as go on joyrides and perform stunts in a special arena.
Werewolves can choose to appear human or take on their werewolf form at any time (though they are forced to on a full moon, see below). They can follow their animal instincts by going hunting, scratching furniture and scampering on all-fours. Vampires are still the blood-sucking beasts you know from the Late Night expansion. They still burn in the sun, bite other Sims and go to vampire nightclubs.
For this review, I also had a copy of the Late Night expansion pack installed, just to see the enhancements done to the vampire life state. None of Moonlight Falls’ bars, lounges or hangouts would really be complete without the Late Night expansion, really. The lack of bouncers and bartenders makes the joint soulless, and it’s just nice to see a fairy tending the bar.
The Ghosts in the Sims 3: Supernatural are the usual ones you saw since the base game. They appear from their graves or surface from the timely/untimely/intentional death of your sim and are colour-coded in accordance to their mode of death, be it starvation, electrocution or just by old age. Because of this new CAS feature, playable ghosts are now possible without having to go through the trouble with the science laboratory opportunity from the base game.
The new major feature are moon phases, which will directly affect gameplay, especially for werewolves during a full moon, who are forced to transform into one and ditch their human form. Humans also undergo a period of “Lunacy” when under a full moon, and may slap others, even when on good terms, for no good reason and get a thrill out of doing romantic things under a full moon.
Zombies also appear during a full moon, roam the streets and attack the homes of Sims, or their plants, if they’re not in. And here’s the caveat: You can’t get rid of the zombies eating away at your crops. This, of course, is the most irritating and frustrating part of the expansion pack, and a missed opportunity for EA to allow your Sims to zap zombies for fun. You can, however, stop the moon from phasing in the settings, but your Sims’s won’t exactly be able to enjoy the full benefits of a full moon.
The expansion pack also offers the new alchemy skill for elixir brewing (including brews that you can turn into a zombie with), the fortune-telling career and beekeeping for honey-harvesting, all open to regular human Sims. There also new plants, gems and fish to hunker down and collect all around town.
Previous game patches have gradually allowed EA to slowly creep their online presence onto your game and now with Supernatural (and Patch 38) the full Sims 3 Store appears in your Build and Buy modes if you ever feel like wanting to spend some real cash on SimPoints to buy creature comforts for your Sim. Some may not appreciate this level of forced consumerism, however, and the feature is non-optional.
I originally play my copy of the base game with the Ambitions and Late Night expansions fine on the Mac and one should not expect any graphical issues and the game comes with a new Dark Wave radio soundtrack. The Sims 3: Supernatural is still a fine addition to a Simmer’s collection who will no longer have to ask what life would be if their Sims were werewolves in the Sims 3.
|SCORESHEET (out of 10)||OVERALL
The Sims 3: Supernatural is an expansion pack for The Sims 3 life simulation game developed by The Sims Studio for Electronic Arts on Windows PC and Mac OS X. Origin Windows Download Version reviewed. For the purposes of review and story-telling, a family was imported from the reviewer’s old save game and converted into Supernaturals by force.