Review

The Sims 3: Supernatural (PC)

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In what appears to me my weekly Sims 3 expansion review, I get my freak on with Supernatural. The latest expansion is all about the freaky creatures that, in the last decade, have lost their scary nature and become pop figures with glittering skin and good intentions. What I wanted this expansion to be is a more hardcore Sims expansion, but what I ended up with is fluff.

The Sims 3: Supernatural Screenshot 1

In a Sims expansion a few years back called ‘Night Life,’ vampires made their appearance in the Sims universe. Now in Supernatural, they are joined by werewolves, fairies, zombies and witches which sounds like a recipe for some epic confrontations, kind of like Underworld with Kate Bekinsale.

Supernatural introduces a new town called Moonlight Falls, and if you have seen any Vampire Diaries you will recognise it at first glance. I know this because I have never watched an episode. Honest. Really. The town is a quaint little area in the American Midwest where nothing really seems to happen… apart from the supernatural.

The Sims 3: Supernatural Screenshot 2

Moonlight Falls includes a few new venues that are adequately supernatural. You can have your fortune told at the gypsy caravan, or you can visit the elixir store to practise some alchemy. Every new supernatural life state has a venue that serves their needs, too. The Red Velvet Lounge is chock full of vampires every night.

This brings me to the list of supernatural beings available in this expansion. Obviously vampires are there as they were introduced in a previous expansion. If you do not have Night Life then don’t worry, you can get all vampired up with Supernatural. You can now also let your Sims become werewolves, witches, fairies, ghosts and even zombies.

The Sims 3: Supernatural Screenshot 3

Whatever your Sim becomes, they are affected by the moon and the varying states it is in. This forced the developers to add a lunar cycle to the game where every few days a full moon rises over the town. During full moon your werewolf Sim will become a hairy, lurching creature with a transformed face and fangs poking through their lips. This new hairy creature will scare off other Sims. Sims can also change into werewolves when angered or when they need to be faster or stronger, but be warned: a werewolf gets hungry faster.

Similarly to the werewolf, all the other new creatures have equally interesting advantage and disadvantages. Vampires can use mind control on other Sims, but get very cranky in sunlight. Witches can cast spells on other Sims, mostly affecting their needs. Cast a hunger spell on a Sim and, depending on if its a good or a bad witch, you’ll make them very hungry or fully satisfied.

Fairies are very creative creatures and learn music and art very quickly. They can transform into their natural form and fly rapidly. When a Sim is transformed into a fairy they don’t choose their wings, but luckily you can change these later.

The Sims 3: Supernatural Screenshot 4

Becoming one of these mythical and supernatural beings used to be a bit of a problem. You needed to track down a vampire, convince him that you can be friends and then ask to be converted. In Supernatural you can choose one these traits when you create a new Sim. Now you can create an entire family of ghosts from the beginning and move them into a house of your choice.

Any trait or life state can be changed by use of magical elixirs. If you became a vampire and chose to then rather become a werewolf, a simple elixir can take care of that. Unfortunately I failed in creating a magical hybrid vampire-fairy as you can only be one of them at a time.

The only annoying part about The Sims 3: Supernatural is the zombies. These appear at random at your house during full moons and can cause a lot of damage to your home and garden. Thanks to a partnership with PopCap’s game, Plants vs Zombies, you can purchase pea-shooters that will help fend off the zombies, but they are more of a nuisance than anything else. This is where I was hoping the Sims would decapitate zombies or stake some vampires, but alas Sims cannot commit murder. A vampire cannot suck the blood of a Sim character until they die, and a witch cannot turn you into a bug and then squish you.

The Sims 3 Supernatural Screenshot 1

As with most other expansions, Supernatural is full of new items. You can buy a wand rack to house your collection of magical wands, or you can place suitably Gothic furniture to allow your house a great supernatural feel. There are also more clothing and hairstyles available, and as a plus your Sims can now have freaky skin colours. Ever wanted a blue werewolf? Now you can!

The Sims 3: Supernatural expansion adds a whole lot to the game with more than just a few new items. Any fan of Twilight and Vampire Diaries will immediately fall in love with the new Moonlight Falls and all it has to offer. It has been a long time since The Sims has had such a great expansion adding so much more to do.

The Sims 3 Supernatural Screenshot 2

Creating new and exciting families of ghosts and fairies is now a reality. It is a pity that the game is not as hard hitting as proper zombie, vampire and werewolf games can and should be, but it still is a whole lot of fun. At the very least it should allow you to chop off a zombie’s head. There is always the Blood and Guts expansion I have been hounding EA for…

- The Good: Various new supernatural beings; Dueling witches and wizards; Lunar cycle adds new perspective

- The Bad: Annoying zombies; Not as scary as it could have been

- The Ugly: Give me an axe to chop off some heads!


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