The Sims 3 has been out on PC for a few years now but EA and Maxi’s are still creating new uses and experiences for players to continually return to the Sims 3. Island Paradise is the newest of the expansions for the Sims 3 and I have to say does well to breathe new life into the game. I have been living in Isla Paradiso for some time now and I haven’t felt for a single moment that I want to leave. The island paradise expansion has so much to offer the player that they will be spending hours, upon hours, exploring Isla Paradiso.
People who play Sims 3 or just people that know the Sims 3 already know it’s a great fun game. So naturally you get all the great gameplay features that the Sims 3 offers. These include all the fun things such as visiting random places in your neighbourhood, getting a job, learning to cook and even falling in love and starting a family. All these things are available in the expansion but under a different setting.
Isla Paradiso is a beautiful set of islands that for me really brought a relaxation component to the game. Living on an island near the beach made me feel accomplished and successful. No more struggling in the suburbs trying to pay my bills. Isla Paradiso’s beaches where I could go and relax or read a book were only a moment’s walk away at all times.
When you first launch the game you of course have to choose where you are going to live and where your Sim will set their life up for your game time. I chose the island above and set up right in the middle. What’s interesting is that when you get a job for your sim, I found that a boat would come to the shore line and take you to the next island where you work. So my Sim was always leaving in a car, taking a boat, followed by another car. There are also numerous shops and businesses like the takeaway shops or the coffee shops or the book shops that you can visit and even part own. Once you part own one of the shops you can eventually buy out the other owners and fully own one. But owning one of the local businesses in no way matches the revenue your Sim could get by owning a resort.
The island paradise expansion is great in that it lets you run your own resort. For the most part I was far more interested in running and decorating my own resort than I was in my own Sims home. One thing I noticed is that you could essentially not work at all in Isla Paradiso. Once you buy a resort (mine cost $0) you can just live off that revenue. But to get lots of money you really have to focus on increasing your resorts rating. When you start off though your resort is fairly simple, not much features and rooms. But as with most things in life, and in the Sims. You start off simple and you build into greatness.
For most of the beginning of the game I tried to live off just being unemployed and running the resort, but eventually got my sim a job so I could get money much more faster. A lot of the upgrades cost over $7000 which takes time to save in the sims particularly in the early parts of the game. So having a job, plus the resort income allowed me to get there far quicker and buy things like the pool and the gym in the above picture.
There are some interesting dynamics in resort running functions which I do enjoy. They are simple enough for any person to understand and have just enough detail so the player knows what should be improved. Through the financial section you can see what everything costs and what revenue and profit you have each day. While the reviews section tells you what the Sims who visited your resort thought. The reviews I thought were great, because they allowed me as the player to know exactly what to build next in order to satisfy my customers. You can see all the examples of this below based on our “Resident Entertainment” resort.
Of course as is the case when you are building your house there is also the option to build and improve your resort. In many ways it’s virtually similar to the way you would go about and add customisations to your house. Any Sims player should be familiar and find it quite easy to build and improve their resort. I had no problems in improving my resort and liked the blueprint options available for the player to choose from. Building things in the Sims 3 is expensive though, luckily the player can bring in thousands of dollars a day, but even so, upgrades cost money. I found it important to ensure what is spent would translate into either a better rating or more revenue. If I was to offer a tip though, it’s that adding in a few rooms early on will boost revenue quick with more Sims staying at the resort (even if they only give half a star review for their stay, you still get their money!).
Apart from the resort running and operating features which are my main interest in this expansion as I find it the most fun. There is also the holiday type of features. Your Sim is able to go to other resorts, relax on Isla Paradiso’s many beaches, go snorkelling, sailing, swimming and many other island and beach oriented activities. I liked this feature, I like seeing my sim have fun! The more open world nature of Sims 3 compared to Sims 2 or Sims 1 lends itself perfectly to this concept. Island Paradise was the first time in Sims 3 where I felt my sim was not confined, I could sail the seas and explore the oceans. Although I do get worried about drowning out there, it hasn’t happened to me yet but I do think it possible. I have seen many a ghost floating around in those waters so beware of the sea.
If there is anything I could find that I could say I didn’t like about this expansion which there isn’t really much at all. It’s that I would have liked the build area of my resort to be bigger than it was. I found that it was quite easy early on the fill up all the space and I’m not sure I can fit every building type in my resort. While the beach activities are fun and the sailing shown above is also fun, you can’t control your Sim during it, like many activities in the sims you just watch them do it and sail to random places. But you can set points for them to go and sail to though so I guess you can explore the seas in that sense. I don’t think these points are a major issue though as the game had so many positives, they are just thoughts I had as to my preference.
Overall I can’t really fault the game as a gameplay experience because it has everything that makes playing the Sims great. I love Isla Paradiso and I have had a lot of fun playing the game. I have put well over 21 hours into this game so far for the review and intend to put a lot more into the game in the future. I feel that even though I have done many things in Island paradise I can’t help but want to check back on my resort. I want to get it to 5 stars. I want to reach the top of my Sims career. I want to try all the beach activities. I love meeting random holidaying Sims in my resort and becoming their friend. I like exploring the island and I love sailing the seas of Isla Paradiso.
The Sims 3 Island Paradise is a game any Sims fan would truly love and enjoy. Island paradise is a fun game, an entertaining game and a game filled with a wide variety of activities and excitement for the player to be kept busy with and enjoy.