I have been M.I.A. from my blog for about a week now and it's mainly because I've been fueling my gaming addiction. Several games that I've been anticipating were released and I've been spending a lot of time trying them out. The German got Patapon for his PSP. He's been a Sony beta tester for a few years now so he often gets to try out new games and features for the game systems before they are released to the public. Plus, they provide some pretty nice wearable schwag, too.
Electronic Arts released another bug-filled expansion pack for The Sims 2, as well. I've been playing The Sims since shortly after the first series was released by Maxis (the company that originally released the game). Ever since EA bought them out, the quality level of the game has really gone down. I'm so tired of all the bugs that come with every single expansion.
The jump bug and the invisible kicky bags rendered the game unplayable for me until I downloaded hacks created by Two Jeffs and JM Pescado (the top two modders for the Sims series. It's really sad that outsiders come up with solutions to these problems before EA is even willing to acknowledge that they exist and aren't caused by adding custom content to your game.
At this point, I prefer the items created by modders to that created by the EA folks. Right now I have over 26,000 custom content files, which far outnumbers the ones that came with the game. The content found on sites like ModTheSims2 and the Sims2 Graveyard is a lot more original and the textures are just better. Without Nengi's Factory Living collection the downtown sub-neighborhood would be totally boring. In fact, her Beach Living collection makes up at least half of the homes in my suburban sub-neighborhoods, too.
This latest EP, Sims Freetime, has a lot of neat additions. However, some of them are not very original. For instance, EA added a sewing machine to keep your sims busy. You can use it to make clothes if you gain enough skill points. The thing is, I already had a sewing machine for my game. The EA version is an obvious knock-off. The ceramic art workstation also existed long before EA decided to include a version in this expansion pack.
Still, this is one of the better packs that EA has made for The Sims 2 and I plan to spend a few more days checking out its features before I make up my mind about whether I really like it.