You can’t talk about the history of simulation games without mentioning The Sims. The name itself is short for simulation. The Sims series is widely considered on the top of the list of franchise games. The Sims series has sold over 200 million copies worldwide and fans of The Sims franchise are online like never before. Hundreds of millions of player-created content have been shared and downloaded by one of the most active player communities in the world and the viral appeal of The Sims is further evidenced by its 30 million fans across global social networks. There are other amazing statistics about the franchise – as of September 2018, The Sims app has been downloaded 41 million times, sold over 25 million dollars to date with mobile gaming alone. That puts the total number of players that have played the game at approximately 80 million. The Sims franchise has generated more than 3 billion dollars in revenue, putting them in the same class as the blockbusterfilms Titanic and Avatar.

The Sims was designed and created by William Wright. Years before The Sims game was a reality, William designed the ever- popular game Sim City. This game would let you be your own architect by creating buildings, roads, parks, schools and fire stations, to name a few. The idea would be to build your own unique city or town while also pleasing the people living there. The first release of this game was in 1989 and was primarily for the Commodore 64. Numerous sequels followed in the following years as the popularity grew to historic numbers. The one variable you could not control was the people. They would be computer generated and their actions depended on the design of your world. William thought of the idea to create a new simulation game that would allow you to control all aspects of the indi- vidual inside the virtual playground. This

game would be called “The Sims”. According to an interview he did with “Gamasutra”, Wright explains that he did not have enough money or sponsorship to originally produce the game. “They never gave me any money for it, either, so I never got the advances. I wasn’t in any real financial obligation. So, it just sat on the shelf for several years. The Commodore version was all done; it was just never published”.

Todd Friedman Todd Friedman (386 Posts)

Todd Friedman is heavily involved in the retro gaming community and has co-promoted the Video Game Summit in Chicago, IL for the past 16 years. He also has published 2 books and written for various different gaming magazines including Old School Gamer.