Sims 3 reinstalled

My test sim has completed a “Deep Thought” ice sculpture. This entry hardly qualifies as “deep thoughts” though. Still, it may interest some younger readers.

After I put in a SSD as my boot “hard disk” and upgraded from Windows XP to Windows 7, all my old programs were gone. I have installed the few I am still using.  From a couple days ago, this also includes The Sims 3.

The game worked horribly badly on Windows XP and Vista. The frequent crashes on the Windows XP machine may have to do with the widescreen driver, which I believe was not made for XP in the first instance. But in addition, both of the machines were hit by sound issues, including one where the sound began to loop and there was no way to exit from the program in a dignified manner until the sound stopped looping, which was random and could take hours when I was unlucky. Force closing the program could cause Vista to display a black screen until I logged off.

As expected, the program runs much better under Windows 7. I am slightly surprised that they could not be bothered to keep the game backwards compatible with the only Windows versions that existed when the game was new. -I have the Ambitions expansion pack, but even if you have none, the game will occasionally update itself. Most notably it will implement small bits from the expansion packs even if you don’t buy the whole thing. So for instance I have the new photo memories feature and life phase length adjustment launched with Generations, and the zodiac system for romantic compatibility from Late Night, and my sculptor tries to make objects from the World Adventures expansion – except they end up as blinking red cubes instead…

Anyway, the game seems to be rock stable now under Windows 7. I have run it for several hours one evening. Unfortunately my favorite modification, the Awesomemod, is not yet compatible with the latest version, but this is unrelated to the operating system. It just so happens that the game has been upgraded for the recent release of the Generations expansion, and as usual this broke some of the modifications that worked before. I have no doubt that Pescado will make the Awesomemod work as well as it did before, probably better.

The Sims 3 is a pretty big program, and more so with expansion packs. As you play, the number of people and objects and data about them will continue to rise. So the game is one that benefits from having a SSD for your swap file, unless you have a lot of RAM in your machine. Of course, RAM is even much faster, but it may not be feasible – for instance my 32 bits computer cannot handle more than 3.25 GB RAM. In any case, when running the game now with the Ambitions expansion, on my Quad-core with 32-bit Win7,  there is no pause anywhere at any time: Everything appears instantly wherever I go on the map.  I am not sure whether this will continue if I play the game for a very long time, but I probably won’t do that. I have a lot of other interests now, trying to maintain my body and soul more than I did. So this will have to do for now.