Five Ways Creatives Can Learn From The Sims FreePlay...

(Bear With Me)

June 2017

The Sims FreePlay town


The inspiration for this article came from Rorie Kelly’s (@roriekelly) 2016 post on what musicians can learn from Pokémon Go. I’ve never played Pokémon Go. For me, a game is for relaxing at home in your pyjamas. I don’t see the point – not if it involves actually going outside!


This is why I love Sims FreePlay. Like Pokémon Go, it’s a mobile app. The aim is to put your sims through hard labour to build a town – completing quests and enjoying their relationship drama along the way.


Is it a waste of time? Possibly. But humans aren’t machines. We can’t work 24/7 and downtime is acceptable. And perhaps we can learn from our favourite games. Here goes… 


  • Check in every day

If you leave your sims unvisited for too long, you return to chaos. They’ve all wet themselves, you’ve got to clean that up… it’s not good! It’s the same with our creativity (minus the urine… hopefully.)


Whether you’re creating something new or promoting existing work, devoting a little time each day helps. You can get there, one step at a time – but you must keep walking. 


  • Get creative

Apparently some computer games improve hand-eye coordination. In a similar way, I think the artistic side of Sims FreePlay enhances our creativity.


I paid 30 Social Points for the house below. It’s called Renovator’s Dream. My job was to transform the property and get it sim-ready. Such tasks allow us to get creative in unusual ways. Surely that’s a positive thing?


I think I was an interior designer in a past life


  • Back up your work

If my phone were stolen, I’d lose my progress in the game. I need to find out if I know my password or whether my sim town can be saved to the cloud.


Make sure your work is backed up. Email it to yourself. Get paranoid about what could go wrong and how you could lose your art – and prepare. Creative work can be hard to replicate if lost. Don’t let this happen.


  • Go after what you want

One of my sim families was cramped in a dull house. So my sims toiled day and night to save for a majestic family home. They worked every day and, in their free time, grew vegetables and baked goods to sell. I wanted that house, I put my mind to it, and my sims moved in.


We don’t always have the same determination and confidence in real life. Our real goals can seem out of reach compared to goals within a game. However, if we never give up and take steps towards achieving our ambitions, we can get there. Succeeding in games always reminds me of this.


  • Teamwork makes the dream work

Sims can afford to build that holiday resort sooner if they ALL go to work. The restaurant and stables came in a dire state. One sim alone would’ve taken half a week to get each section cleaned up and ready for public use. Together, they finished in a day.


Whether we’re collaborating with fellow creatives, or helping to raise awareness of someone else’s work, together we rise.


Other aspects of The Sims FreePlay will never be in real life. Not once has my dog dug up money in the garden. I can’t give $250 to a plant that hands me $15,000 back if I’m in a really great mood, and coffee can’t replace sleep for weeks on end. But hey ho!


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