Webounce around a ton of ideas around here for expansion packs, but I can thinkof very few that generated the amount of excitement as the idea for timetravel. When I say “time travel,” I’m not just talking about new technology anda new way of life in a futuristic setting—though that’s a big part of it—but alsoabout giving you the ability to travel to the future and back again, with youractions in the present having repercussions in the future. We knew it was goingto be a challenge to work out the gameplay mechanics to achieve this, but thatwas one of the things we were most excited about.
InThe Sims 3 Into the Future your Sims accomplishtheir time hopping by entering the Time Portal. First we knew we had to makethe new future setting compelling. We set out to build a whole new worldhundreds of years from now, a world that not only looks different but that ispopulated with all-new technology, objects and interactions that will changehow you play with life in surprising new ways.
Thegame gets even more interesting once you start traveling back and forth betweenthe future and the present. What your Sims do in the present will affect thefuture—will that future be a grim one or a bright one? Will your Sims have toadapt to a polluted and unstable environment, or will they walk around with aspring in their step through a love-infused wonderland where anyone is liableto break into spontaneous dance at any time? Nothing is ever completely blackor white, though: meteorites that rain down in the dystopic future can leavebehind gems that are a great source of income, and Sims that have to resort toeating bugs will find they can make a nutritious and tasty dish! Meanwhile, eventhe happy-go-luckiest of Sims in the future utopia might overdose on all thelove and sunshine and end up retching rainbows!
Whicheverfuture your Sims end up with, they can meet their descendants there, then dosomething in the present that threatens those descendants’ very existence. Ifyou reduce your present-day household to a single Sim with the loner trait, forexample, you might go on your next trip to the future only to find themdescendant-less!
Bynow you’re probably wondering exactly what kind of technology your Sims willencounter on their journey to a future paradise or dystopia. I don’t want togive away everything, but here’s a sampling: hoverboard, jetpack, laser beat machine(a crazy new electronic instrument that’s part laser harp, part foot drums!), dreampod,food synthesizer, and air tube elevator! Suffice it to say, the tech willreinvent the way your Sims eat, sleep, travel, socialize, work, and have fun.
Theaddition of all this new tech left us free to take full advantage of what the futuristicsetting has to offer in terms of opportunities for rich storytelling andexploration. This includes the new Create A Bot feature. From the beginning weknew we wanted to make Plumbots a central part of life in the future, and allowplayers to go deep in creating and experimenting with them.
Whilethe interface will feel familiar and comfortable to anybody who has used CreateA Sim, Create A Bot includes some powerful new gameplay elements that will letyou tell all sorts of new stories with a variety of biped and hover bots. Youcan hone your new bot-building skill in order to create different trait chipsand program your bots’ behavior. Your bots can become friends and companionsfor your Sims and integrate into their lives in interesting ways as you givethem not only parts to, say, help out around the home, but emotional traits aswell!