December 2001 News Archive

Saturday, December 29, 2001

[TheSims] Source: SimsZone
Possible Fourth Expansion?
by Kevin Stange @ 12:57 PM EST
SimsZone is reporting rumors of a fourth expansion pack for The Sims, titled "The Sims: Vacation" to be released in late March.

Maxis has not yet released any information regarding this rumored expansion, however it is already listed on Electronic Boutique's web site. You can look at the product information right here.

Please remember this information is NOT confirmed. I have already contacted Maxis to request confirmation, and will announce my findings as soon as possible.

Thursday, December 20, 2001

[SimGolf] Source:
SimGolf Demo Contest
by Kevin Stange @ 2:07 PM EST
Firaxis and IGN are promoting a contest involving the recently released demo of Sid Meier's SimGolf. Players are asked to design a spectacular three-hole course with the game demo, and send it in to the folks at Firaxis for judging.

First Prize will be any three EA games, plus an autographed copy of Sid Meier's Sim Golf. Second Prize is any two EA games and Third Prize is one EA game.

Click here to see all the details!

The contest ends December 31, 2001.

Wednesday, December 19, 2001

[TheSims] Source:
SimDay at
by Kevin Stange @ 11:19 PM EST
Maxis has released a holiday gift for The Sims fans. If you think your Sims would enjoy kissing under the misletoe this holiday season, this download is for you. Click here to grab the download.

Also worth noting, the Maxis staff at has joined those at and left for their holiday break. Site updates will return on January 10th, which also happens to be the TSO skinning contest deadline. would like to join Maxis in wishing everyone a very happy holiday season and a wonderful new year.

Tuesday, December 18, 2001

[TheSims] Source:
SimDay for December 13th
by Kevin Stange @ 2:36 PM EST
Last week, Maxis announced their "Get Your Skins in The Sims Online™" Contest. The winner(s) will receive $100, a Maxis game and will be credited in The Sims Online for their skin. Maxis will also continue to allow you to distribute your skin freely.

If you'd like to see one of your skins in the upcoming game, check the guidelines, then start skinning! Click here for all the details.

The contest ends January 10th, 2002.

Wednesday, December 12, 2001

[TheSims] Source: NPD Techworld
Hot Date Falls to Second
by Nick Steffel @ 9:03 PM EST
NPD Techworld has released the results for the latest week, showing that The Sims: Hot Date fell from first to second place, with Harry Potter taking its place. The good old-fashioned standard The Sims holds strong at third, followed by the enigmatic Backyard Basketball. A full list follows below:

10 Best Selling Games for the Week of November 25th to December 1st:
1. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
2. The Sims: Hot Date
3. The Sims
4. Backyard Basketball
5. Survivor: The Interactive Game
6. RollerCoaster Tycoon
7. Return to Castle Wolfenstein
8. Zoo Tycoon
9. Civilization III
10. Backyard Football 2002

Anyone want to invest in my Backyard Quidditch game? You know it's good stuff.

Tuesday, December 11, 2001

[TheSims] Source: VoodooExtreme
Pipeline Preview of The Sims Online
by Tim Gowa @ 7:22 PM EST
Game Domain's posted a new 'Pipeline' Preview of The Sims Online today. The article covers the points currently known about TSO, but doesn't introduce anything new. It does however, sum up the known facts quite well, and includes all four current screenshots.

"The plans that EA has outlined involve huge networks of online neighbourhoods where players can create their avatar and their environment in painstaking detail. Whether it's a house, coffee bar, dance club, museum -- hell, anything you can imagine -- the potential is there and thousands upon thousands of fans will be ready to lap it up."

If you want to dig into this article (as always) click here.

Monday, December 10, 2001

[MaxisEA] Source:
Maxis Site-Wide Routine Maintenance
by Tim Gowa @ 11:39 PM EST
If you didn't see in the below post, there will be site-wide outages at all Maxis sites tonight. Maxis is preforming 'routine maintenance work' on every site from 11PM to 12AM PST (2AM to 3AM EST) tonight (Tuesday).

So, this will affect you even if your just browsing SimGolf screenshots, TheSims forums, or SimCity download. But don't worry, it will be over quite quickly! :)

[SimCity] Source:
SimDay for December 11th
by Tim Gowa @ 11:32 PM EST
Maxis has posted several updates for their latest SimCity SimDay. The first being that the Christmas Building Contest is now closed (for details on that contest click here). The second annoucement being that the staff is taking a break for Christmas, but will resume on the next SimDay after that, January 8th. Also on January 8th the winners to the Christmas Building Contest will be posted.

The third annoucement is that a new building landmark has been posted for download. The St. Paul's Church is now ready for your downloading pleasure by clicking here. (And then by clicking 'Download Paulskirche' :)

And the final annoucement is annoucing a site-wide outage tonight
[(default)] Source: SimGothia
SimGothia's X-Mas Update
by Tim Gowa @ 4:30 PM EST
SimGothia's updated with an extra-special, and an extra-early Christmas present for all you SimCity fans. SimGothia has now unveiled it's spectacular "Christmas Package 2001" featuring approximately 74 new items for SimCity!

The package features mostly SCURKs, but also prop files. Also included in the package is the annoucement of a new contrubitor to SimGothia, Samoht.

You can get all the goodies in this package by hitting up SimGothia's main page.
[TheSims] Source: reviews The Sims: Hot Date
by Tim Gowa @ 4:22 PM EST
Sorry this news item is several days late.. but beter late then never, right? got around to reviewing The Sims latest expansion pack, The Sims: Hot Date. Covering several of the new nifty features, to recounting how stories of how the reviewer (Vicent Lopez) created Sim love stories of his coworkers, this review features it all. As always there is the spiffy scoring box at the end, and The Sims: Hot Date clocks in at an 8.4 at IGN.

"Because Hot Date is actually more about all levels of personal communication rather than just dating, they've given you a surprising number of new options where there used to be just a handful. You can wave instead of just greeting, or you can give multiple levels of compliments. Want your hug to be friendly instead of intimate? Feel like growling with a flirt instead of just checking someone out?"

Still want to read it? Still intrested? Check it out here.

Sunday, December 9, 2001

[(default)] Source:
New 'In-Depth' Article @
by Tim Gowa @ 11:00 PM EST's webmaster, Jason Wilson, has authored another excellent article, this time on the SimCity 3000 series. This is an 'in-depth' article, but really an excellent review.

The review touches up on everything from a comparison to former SimCity games, to the disasters, to several of the new features of the game. It wraps up quite nicely, and features a handy scoring chart.

"One area that hasn't changed much: disasters. The disaster list has taking quite a dip as several have been cut off, but none the less, they are all impressive. Watching as fire breaks out in the city, or a tornado rips through a suburban area, it's all fun for those who like to tear down as much as they build up."

You can checkout the whole article here.
[TheSims] Source:
SimDay for December 6th
by Kevin Stange @ 2:34 PM EST
Maxis has released a new object for The Sims fans this past SimDay, which comes in the form of a "Triple Bull Dartboard." This item would probably be well suited for the downtown area of Hot Date. Click here to get the dartboard!

Friday, December 7, 2001

[TheSimsOnline] Source: Gamespot
The Sims Online Slated for Late 2002
by Nick Steffel @ 5:37 PM EST
Gamespot is reporting that Maxis officials have stated that The Sims: Online is currently slated for a launch in the later half of 2002. I'm sure we can expect increasing amounts of news on The Sims: Online in the coming months ahead, and hopefully ones that will provoke longer newsposts than this.

Thursday, December 6, 2001

[TheSims] Source: NPDTechworld
"Hot Date" is a Hot Buy
by Nick Steffel @ 11:17 AM EST
It's been a few months since I've given the latest NPDTechworld (a newly created subdivision of big daddy NPD Intelect) figures, but the world has yet to implode as a result. That aside, here are the latest figures for the week of November 17th - November 24th:

1. The Sims: Hot Date
2. Harry Potter and The Sorcerer's Stone
3. Return to Castle Wolfenstein
4. RollerCoaster Tycoon
5. The Sims
6. Backyard Basketball
7. Survivor: The Interactive Game
8. Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon
9. Civilization III
10. Zoo Tycoon

As you can see, The Sims: Hot Date has zoomed its way right up to first place. The original The Sims holds strong at fifth, while Livin' Large and House Party have fallen off the chart.

Am I the only one disturbed by the presence of Backyard Basketball above such fine titles as Civilization III and Ghost Recon? Go outside and play basketball, leave computer gaming to abstract things that work best outside of reality (like my unstoppable Panzer blitzkrieg or M249-SAW cover fire).

Monday, December 3, 2001

[TheSims] Source: Gamespot
Maxis explains sudden cancellation of SimsVille
by Rand Huck @ 11:08 PM EST
Gamespot has recently posted an article where Patrick Buechner, the Maxis developer of the former project SimsVille, responds to the uproar its cancellation has caused. In a nutshell, they thought the game wouldn't have the entertainment value they were hoping for, and thus decided to cut the rope.

I wanted to get into the open a little snippet of the brief interview that will debunk a lot of the rumors I've been hearing that it was Electroic Art's decision and not Maxis' to cancel the widely anticipated game:

GameSpot: Patrick, was it Maxis or Electronic Arts that decided to cancel the game?

Patrick Buechner: The decision definitely came from within Maxis. It was a studio decision that involved the members of the SimsVille design team as well as a number of senior [executives]...