Just when I’m about to throw up my hands in exasperation at another Sims announcement, EA comes up with an idea that could be…interesting. The company announced today they’ll be taking fake people manipulation back to medieval times with The Sims Medieval (note that that’s medieval times, not Medieval Times™). The new series, currently in development, places the popular characters from The Sims into the Middle Ages and “… brings players robust, compelling gameplay never seen before in the history of The Sims.” In other words, they’re finally geeking it up, and God bless ‘em for it.
For the first time, players can create heroes, venture on quests, build and control a kingdom, and play every Hero Sim character in the land. Creativity will soar as players tell stories like never before full of drama, romance, conflict, and comedy.
Well, they kind of blew it with that last line, but I guess they want to distance themselves from the WoW crowd somehow.
Or, maybe not. Said Scott Evans, General Manager of The Sims Studio at EA, “The Sims Medieval offers a new way for players to experience The Sims which we hope fans will enjoy, and it features gameplay that fans of strategy and role-playing games will find appealing such as controlling an entire kingdom and quest-based gameplay mechanics.”
So, it’s a game for the WoW crowd…and their girlfriends!
The Sims Medieval offers players a chance to build up a medieval kingdom, controlling characters from all walks of life, from kings and queens, to knights and wizards, blacksmiths and bards. It provides a host of storytelling possibilities in the form of quests, from crafting a legendary sword to arranging a royal wedding, to protecting the kingdom from an evil sorcerer, to finding the fountain of youth. Every quest plays out differently depending on which Hero Sim the player is controlling.
The destiny of the kingdom rests in the players’ hands. Will players build up their kingdom through internal expansion, or perhaps look for a more imperial type of domination, expanding their rule by conquering territories? Will they take on quests in pursuit of fame, or focus on the health and wellbeing of their people? The choice is theirs! With the start of every new game, players will be able to select a new ambition for their kingdom, and embark on a new set of stories.
It certainly sounds a hell of a lot more interesting than cleaning the kitchen and getting into a catfight at a night club.
Everything in The Sims Medieval is crafted to create an immersive medieval world, from the quest-based gameplay, to the medieval objects such as swords and stocks and thrones, right down to the warm look of the characters, and the painterly approach to the world itself. Players can choose to customize every new Hero that comes to the kingdom, including selecting their traits and their fatal flaw. Players get close to their characters, not only sending them on epic quests, but also making sure they carry out their daily responsibilities such as healing the sick, trading for exotic goods, or forging armor. From having a baby to competing in a royal tournament, what happens to their Sims is up to the player. The time of romance and chivalry is back with The Sims Medieval.
Okay, EA, now you’re just trying too hard. Regardless, my interest in piqued, but The Sims Medieval won’t be available for PC/Mac until spring 2011. If you’d like to learn more before then (and seriously, I really do), visit www.TheSimsMedieval.com. Or try to. I just went there, and all I got was a blank white page.
You’re not just making this up, are you, EA?