Sunday, May 26, 2013

Fraser: China, France, and Glitches

When we left the Frasers last time, they had just returned from their honeymoon in Egypt, both of them dreaming about having a child. I'm leaving that up to risky woohoo for the time being while I continue to work on Anya's LTW of exploring 6 tombs in each of the destinations.

One of the gems that Anya found in Egypt was a Tiberium. After having it in her inventory for a bit it started making her sick, so I took it out and put it on the ground outside by the garden until I could figure out what to do with it. I looked it up later, and found out that it "grows" if you let it sit out for a few days and becomes very valuable, moreso if you have it cut first. I didn't have this one cut (it's expensive to do so and she couldn't afford it), but it started to grow anyway and kind of auto-cut itself when it did. After about a day and a half of letting it sit out, it sold for §37,812. I could have left it longer, but they needed the money so I could fulfill Anya's wish to buy a vacation home in China to clear it out.

Once the travel moodlet from Egypt had worn off, I sent Anya on a 15 day trip to China hoping to finish up what she needed to do there, and to buy her a home there. I really should have checked on the prices of the houses before, because they're pricy. The cheapest pre-built home was over §45,000, which is more than they had available, even with the sale of the Tiberium. So I just bought her a cheap empty lot and built a simple small house there for now for her to stay in. It should still be more convenient than taking the time to traverse the very spread out base camp lot all the time.

After she had checked out her new house, Anya headed into town to see if the relic dealer had anything interesting, then spent the day chatting with some old friends she ran into there. In the evening she set out to hunt for the red assassin bugs she still needed, but didn't have much luck, so she returned home and tried out her new bed. The next morning her luck was better and she found all the bugs she needed and took them to her friend that had requested them. After making a few purchases from the special merchant, she stopped by the base camp to check the adventure board. She had to study it for quite awhile to find something, but finally she noticed one that looked new, so she headed off to find the woman.

That mission sent her into another tomb at the Temple of Heaven, but she didn't have to go very far in to find what she was looking for. She came back out and returned to the woman, then spent most of the next day hunting gemstones for her. Finally she had enough and she got the keystone to go further into the tomb. Anya went back and headed in. The puzzles were a little more intricate than she'd encountered here before, but she solved them without too much trouble. After unlocking several doors, she came upon an intricate maze of corridors that eventually led to her goal.

She returned the woman that had given her the mission, then had to go talk to another woman to obtain the actual relic she'd been looking for. She befriended the woman and then convinced her to hand over the relic to the Academy, then returned for her final reward. By now she was hungry, and ready to head back to her little home away from home, but she stopped by the adventure board at the base camp first to obtain another mission.

After a good night's sleep, she set out to find her contact. After speaking with a few different people, she finally got to a point where she was told she needed to go to Champs les Sims in France to speak to the Nectar merchant. Since she still had several days in China, she decided to see what else she could find there. She went to the market and started looking around, for she'd heard rumors of some catacombs down below it. Sure enough, after a bit of looking she found the switch that opened the stairway. Inside she found quite a bit of treasure, but just as important, once she finished it, she had completed 6 tombs in China and so was officially done with that portion of her LTW.

After spending some time wandering around collecting metals and gems, and stopping by the marketplace for some take out, Anya headed back to her little house. After a good night sleep she sorted through her bags and sent some of the gems and metals off to be cut or smelted. Then, while I was still going through her bags selling stuff, she autonomously started cooking. I didn't pay much attention to it at first until I saw her food giving off rainbows as she took it from the oven. Yep, she'd autonomously prepared Ambrosia for herself.

This presented me with a bit of a conundrum, for I didn't want to have her eat Ambrosia just yet, and I wasn't sure what effect it would have eating it while on vacation since aging is paused then anyway. After pausing for awhile to give it some thought, I decided I'd have her save the leftovers here, but then be sure to get them out before she left so she could save it in the fridge at home for later. I'd just as soon not waste it if I can keep it from going bad. After that, I decided to take it easy and just have her practice her board breaking for awhile to work on her martial arts skill. Watching a sim do this is kind of interesting, though the noises they make while doing it get annoying pretty fast (lots of grunting and groaning and "hi-yah"s).

She managed to raise her martial arts skill to 8, and got a new gi. She changed into it and struck a pose.

When she got her gems and metals back from processing, she also received another Master Manchu Magic Gnome. She decided to leave this one here in China.

After that, I had her cut her trip short and return home. While she could easily have filled the few remaining days with gem and metal hunting, skilling martial arts, or chatting with friends, I didn't really feel like spending the time on all that right now. Plenty of time to while away time with that stuff later. Once she was home, I saw that she had a bunch of Mercury vials, so decided see what transfiguring them would do. So I bought her the appropriate display and put it in the side yard for now. Set it up, had her push the button, and after a moment she had a large ingot of Mercury instead of the 8 vials. Downside to it was I'm pretty sure that between what the vials would have been worth on their own, and the §500 fee to transfigure them, I'm pretty sure she lost a few thousand simoleons on the venture.


Here's where I think I should note as a reminder that I'm blogging this as I play for the most part. I do go back and edit a bit here and there when I'm putting pictures in to post it, and might add things in at that time as well, or at least later on after playing (like this bit here), but for the most part what you see here is my "real time" narration and commentary of what's happening in my game as I type (or, more accurately, what just happened before I hit pause to write it down here). If you're confused why I'm breaking the flow to make note of this now, well - you'll see in a minute.


Anya spent a couple days at home, made a few semi-attempts for a baby with some risky woohoo with Maximus.  I'm starting to think she might not get pregnant until I let her eat the Ambrosia to reset the clock on her Adult life. She still has 7 days until Elder at this point, so should still be possible, but it's not happening for them so far. When there was no sign of pregnancy on the third day back, I sent her on to France. Before leaving she worked with the board breaker some more and got her Martial Arts up to 9 and earned a new belt.

She left for France shortly thereafter, and after picking up a local mission at the adventure board in Champs les Sims, Anya first headed to the Nectary to speak with her contact for the mission she'd picked up in China. While there, she became fascinated with the nectar making machines and decided she wanted to learn how to make nectar herself. She tossed some of the fruit in her backpack into the tub and gave it a whirl.

As was probably to be expected, her first attempt didn't turn out very well. Still, it was an accomplishment.

She spent the day at the nectary then headed back to the base camp to get something to eat and to get some rest. The next day she talked to her next contact for the mission from China, then headed out to a forgotten burial mound to do the mission she'd picked up locally. I had her working on excavating a spot when suddenly - *POOF* she disappeared. Completely. Not even her picture on the sidebar. Then my notifications from Error Trap started going crazy. So, yeah. Bugged to hell and gone all of a sudden. No choice but to exit out and see where it puts me back at. The whole game crashed as I tried to get back to the main menu.


When I reloaded, I had to start over from right after the transfiguring experiment, because that was my last save point. When I first started playing Anya and taking her on trips, I was careful to save before each trip, but repeated success with travelling made me complacent and forgetful about doing so. Ah well, it's only a few sim days to replay. Let's see if we can duplicate what happened before, more or less.

(Insert replay here)

Well, I didn't do things exactly the same, but got to the same general result on the 2nd play. I had her do the block breaker more and she got further into level 9 of Martial Arts, but didn't master it yet. She's up to doing Oak Boards now. I carefully saved to a different named backup file, and to my main file for this hood this time, then had to break for the evening.

Before starting up the next night, I read up on Twallan's Traveler mod and decided to give it a try in hopes it will help prevent a similar catastrophe when I take her back (and on future trips). The Big Glitch didn't come out of nowhere though - I've been noticing some odd behavior with this hood for the last while now - I'm just hoping that it's not too corrupted for the mods to save it or at least keep it alive.

Before taking her back to France, I changed it up a bit and had her work on the block breaker a bit more trying to break a space rock. This was mainly to clear out a promised wish she had to do so. While working on that, she also mastered Martial Arts, which cleared out another promised wish, and got a new belt.

After this, I double-saved again, took a deep breath, crossed my fingers, and sent her back to France. Before she'd even really landed there, she was already letting me know that I maybe need to get more proactive about getting her an heir. She's been having this thought bubble a lot, even in the midst of tomb exploring.

I proceeded pretty much as before by having her grab a mission from the board, then going to find her contact for the China mission. She spent time at the Nectary, but she didn't roll the wish to learn Nectar Making this time so I didn't have her do that. I did buy the nectar machine and one wine rack though. Both will most likely stay in the family inventory for the time being as I don't have any immediate plans to have her start doing Nectar Making (unless of course she starts bugging me with wishes about it).

From there things went fairly well, or seemed to at least. She got past the point where it had crashed the last time, and was able to complete her first tomb in France. While looking around for an opal afterwards she found the entrance to another tomb that had been hidden beneath some boulders. She opted not to continue exploring it just then and headed over to her contact to turn in the opal she'd found instead. Then a trip back to the base camp to have a good meal and a good night's sleep in a bed before she headed to Chateau Landgraab to find the journal she was after. The Landgraabs apparently weren't big on visitors.

It took her awhile of poking around, but eventually she found the passageways to the vault she was looking for. Unfortunately, she forgot to check carefully enough for traps and got caught in a fire trap. This was my fault for not checking the hole in the wall at the base of some stairs that likely would have disarmed it. This one had me worried, for there was no dive well nearby to extinguish in like there had been with other fire traps. Instead she kept using her shower-in-a-cans until she'd used them all up. When she was out of them, she was still on fire for a bit, but it extinguished itself, and only left her singed. This confirms what I'd read that the traps can't really kill your sim, just damage needs.

Conveniently, there was a little bathroom just inside the next room she entered and she was able to freshen up. She also found a nectar making station and several grapes planted down here, including some rare varieties. She harvested what she could, collected what treasure she could find, and then headed first to the Nectary to report in on a mission there, and then back to base camp to sleep.

Anya slept in the next morning, then spent her last day in France wandering around collecting rocks and gems. She returned home at the end of the day having checked off two tombs from her list in France.

And here is where I'm going to end this entry. I'd post a score update, but it hasn't changed since the last entry since no one here has finished their LTW yet so none of their points count so far. Anya's wracking up points though, so once she finishes her LTW the score should take a big jump. Most likely I'll use that as my indicator for when to install Ambitions as well, but we'll see. Next up will most likely be a return to the Medina-Britt household, unless I decide to just keep working on Anya here for a bit longer instead. Until then, Cheers!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Medina-Britt: A New Home

Returning to the Medina-Britt household, we find that most of the household is asleep, though Adrianna is awake and teaching Edita how to walk.

Before I unpaused things, I first went into the family inventory and sold off a whole bunch of junk that they'd somehow accumulated, mostly a ton of different paintings and other decor items, but also a few large ticket items as well. All told, it added up to around 60,000 simoleons I think, not that they need the money. I did it mainly to clear out the junk so I'd have less to sift through coming up. The next thing I did is go through the house and take down all of the sim-painted paintings, most of which were done by Byron Medina, though a few were done by Carolyn (Medina) Britt. I also removed all of the electronic items that Rigoberto had upgraded in some fashion, along with the two teleporters, the body sculptor machine, a collection helper that was laying around nearly forgotten, all of the graves out back (except Jeanna's because she was out haunting), and anything else unique I saw like cut gemstones and the like. All of this is in preparation to move them to the new house I built for them a couple months ago now, and had intended to move them to the last time I was playing them, but never got around to doing so. This time I decided I'd just go ahead and move them first thing and be done with it (only I had to wait until Jeanna had gone back into her grave before I could pick it up). While I was waiting for an opportune moment, I got a cuteness photo op when I had Eugenia play peek-a-boo with Eldred.

Then, just as I was about to have him make the call to move the family to their new house, Grim suddenly came for Charles. That sound you hear is me muttering about it because I'd hoped/planned to have him get some cheese, egg, steak, burger, and omni plants started at the new house before he keeled over. Not sure if any of the others can plant any of that yet, but oh well, I guess I'll find out (It turned out that Carina's already done all the opportunities too even up to the Omni plant). Charles died having contributed 8 points to the challenge.

He was inside the nursery when the scene started, then popped through the wall to meet with Grim who was outside

Once the death scene had finished, I collected Charles and Jeanna's tombstones and put them in the family inventory with the others, then had Damien make the call to have the family move. Despite the fact that they own a couple of vehicles (which I inadvertantly sold), they all piled into a taxi and headed across town to the mansion on Summer Hill Court that awaited them. One nice perk about this lot: it gives everyone the +30 Beautiful Vista moodlet when they're at home.

Here are several shots of the house that I took after I finished building it. Click on the images to view larger.

Front view. Unfortuately, having the enclosed entryway with the arch makes the game see the front door as an interior door and it won't let me set it as the front door. The sims use the door by the rear garage as the front door.

Side view showing courtyard, the "front door", and the garden area. There's a fenced cemetery area in the back corner of the lot off the left side of the picture.

Rear and other side view showing back patio, rock climbing apparatus and pool and spa area. I had to add an extra little room off the back of the rear garage for the Not So Routine Machine. It didn't fit anywhere else in the house.

Top floor view. The large open area at the back center was later converted into a useable room (discussed later in the entry)

Ground floor view. I purchased vehicles to fill the garages after they moved in.

Basement. Currently un-used, I went ahead and added it in when building to have it blocked in for future expansion as needed.
A shot of how the cemetery looked after I got all of the family tombstones placed. I might at some point borrow ASimWen's idea of building a mausoleum to house the dead instead of the cemetery with tombstones.

At some point surrounding the  move, Eugenia spun up the want to be a Star News Anchor like her father aspired to be. Since he's already working on that one though, she's won't be allowed to take it. In general, my policy is that I accept whichever unique LTW the sims roll up a want for first to try to keep it random. Eugenia has plenty of time to pick something else.

The day after the move went by fairly routinely as the family settled into their new home. Damien got a promotion at work that day and is now only one level away from achieving his dream of making it to the top. Adrianna had had to go to work immediately after they'd arrived at the new house the night before, and she came home and went straight to bed. Eugenia went to school and then took some permission slips by the City Hall, then took a logic class at the science facility. Finally, in the evening, it was Eldred's birthday. The family gathered on the back porch with their new maid to watch as Dylan helped him blow out the candles and he transitioned to child. He picked up the Daredevil trait. Poor kid grew up bald, but I took him to the mirror and fixed that.

Life started to get back to normal for the family, with Edita learning to talk and use the potty as anyone who was available when she was awake did their best to teach her her skills. The day after Eldred's birthday, Carina spent much of the day planting the new garden.

Some of the moodlets that Twallan's Woohooer mod gives are really hilarious. Below are some examples. What's really funny? Dylan had all three of these on him after he and Carina woohoo'd that night, lol.

There wasn't a whole lot of note going on here by now. Edita had learned all of her toddler skills, and was just waiting to age up. She had plenty of skill toys to keep her busy, and learning, and Carina found time to read to her at least once to help out as well. Damien and Adrianna were going to work. Damien was one promotion away from getting his LTW now, and while she did get a promotion or two, Adrianna was still fairly low in the Criminal field. I doubt she'll max it before she dies, but it's not her LTW, so it doesn't really matter. Sooner or later I'll get a sim that has it as their LTW and get it done.

Anyway, partly out of boredom, and partly from wanting to try out some of the stuff I'd gotten from the Store, I did some renovating and purchasing for the lot. First, I decided to make a room out of the big empty space on the second floor where the living room below had 2 story ceilings. While that might be nice in a real house, I decided for a sim house it was wasted space, so I put in doors, flooring, a fireplace, etc., moved the chess set up from the room below, added a couch and another bookcase, and got them the cauldron and spellbook pedestal.

Outside, I added a basketball court, an outdoor shower by the rock climbing walls, a chicken coop, and the gardening station that came with the greenhouse lot. The greenhouse lot got placed on a little hill near their house, though not without terrain issues. It's accessible though, and I've sent Carina over there a few times already.

The basketball hoop was placed on the far side of the house by the pool

Outdoor shower on the back of the teleporter room, garden station, and chicken coop

The stereo upstairs broke, and I sent Adrianna up to fix it when she got home from work. She got zapped, but didn't die from it.

The next day was Eugenia and Edita's birthday. Well, ok, I caked Edita up a day early. Figured I might as well do both birthdays at once instead of messing with two parties. Dylan had spun up wants to throw a party for Edita, hence why I went with the full birthday party for them instead of just doing cake with family. Edita went first and aged up to Child. She gained the Good Sense of Humor trait.

Eugenia went next and aged up to teen. She gained the Ambitious trait.

Of course, the first order of business was makeovers.

The following day was Monday and the kids all went to school, Eugenia to her first day of high school, and Edita to her first day of elementary. Damien went to work, and it proved to be a very good day for him, because he got the last promotion that he'd been working for and became a Star News Anchor, fulfilling his LTW. Hooray for getting to count all his points now. When he arrived home, he had a small celebration in the kitchen with Adrianna. I'm not entirely sure what I'm going to do with him now.

Later that evening while he was working on his ninth novel, Dylan mastered writing and completed his LTW to be an Illustrious Author. He's spun up a lot of writing wants now, so probably I'll try to have him focus on that and try to complete some of the writing challenges I still have uncompleted.

Other happenings of the evening included the birth of some chicks in the coop outside since they'd forgotten to collect the eggs.

Carina and Dylan sort of tried for another child since Carina's been wanting another (risky woohoo - I don't particularly want them to have another child, but I'm leaving it to the whims of risky. Carina only has a few days left before she'll be too old, so it won't be an issue very soon.) She was wide awake after that, and because I was bored, I had her try out the magic items I'd put in the new room upstairs. She tried out the cauldron, then learned the Summon spell at the spellbook.

And I think here is where I'm going to end this entry. All of Gen 4 has completed their LTWs now, and Gen 5 hasn't even picked theirs yet. Carina's rolled a 2nd want to have a child (she's had "Have a Child" locked in for awhile, and now spun up "Have a Child with Dylan" as well) so I might have to decide if I'm going to indulge her or still just leave it to the whims of risky. I'd intended to have Eugenia get a part-time job  at the spa to become a Spa Receptionist since it's the last part-time job I have to do (aside from one that will come with a later EP), but forgot to, so I'll have to do that next time I play this household. Other than that, it will be waiting for all the kids to grow up and decide what they want to do. Hopefully I'll get something different instead of the same ones that seem to keep coming up repeatedly.  Here's how my score stands at present with Damien and Dylan having finished their LTWs:

All EP total only includes points through Supernatural. I haven't added Seasons or University points in yet

Next up, I'll be going back to the Frasers to work on World Adventures stuff more. Until then, Cheers!