The Sims™ 3 Community Blog
: January 2013
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Just announced yesterday is the all-new digital world, The Sims 3 Aurora Skies. Here you will discover breathtakingly beautiful sites set in a quaint, coastal town that features the very best of outdoor living. 

Sims that live here can take a soothing swim in the steaming geothermal lake.

Hike up to the edges of towering waterfalls and take in the astounding views of Aurora Skies – or swim to the base of the waterfall to revitalize mind, body and spirit through the pureness of this setting. 

Additionally, Sims looking for a romantic evening can take a night stroll under the dome of the vibrant, multi-colored sky.

Lastly, Sims will settle in nicely with the diversity of new-aged and  and historic homes, featuring the best of eco-friendly living. 

The Sims 3 Aurora Skies is the ultimate getaway for Sims searching for a change of pace, searching for the great outdoors or searching for themselves. 
For those that have The Sims 3 Seasons installed, check out what The Sims 3 Aurora Skies looks like in winter!

The Sims 3 Aurora Skies will be available for digital download from The Sims 3 Store on February 21, 2013! For more information on Aurora Skies, and to join the discussion -- click here!

If you would like to see more of this beautiful new world, save the date for The Sims 3 Live Broadcast on Thursday, February 14 at 10:00 AM PST. We’ll be revealing a sneak peek of the world during the show and also featuring an extended bonus demo of Aurora Skies afterwards, so be sure to stay tuned.


09:00 PM
Posted by: SimGuruTaterTot

The Sims 3 University Life is full of new options for hanging out and making friends. However, in between all of the parties, socializing, and fun activities, your Sim might want to attend a class or two. Whether your Sim is an A student, or only attends class to nap, I’m going to tell you all about how to get the best academic experience for your Sim in The Sims 3 University Life.

Preparation for university can start before your Sim ever leaves home. Before enrolling in university, your Sim can take an aptitude test. Your Sim’s traits, skills, work experience, and even high school grades will affect their test score. Scoring well on the aptitude test can result in credits toward a degree and scholarships to help pay tuition costs!

Once your Sims says goodbye to hometown family and friends and gets settled into their new living environment at university, they may be finding themselves asking, “Now what?” Well, now it’s time to take them to class, of course! Classes start Monday morning, and the university creates a schedule for every Sim based on the class load selected during enrollment. Use the academic panel in the UI to check your Sims’ class schedules and keep an eye on their academic progress during the term. There are tons of ways to affect academic performance, and performance is what will dictate your Sim’s final grades at the end of the term. So how do studious Sims finish the term with flying colors? Let me tell you a few ways…

Mondays and Wednesdays are devoted to seminar-style classes. These classes are held in one of the academic rabbit-hole buildings on campus, and can vary from Introduction to Dodging Questions to Methods and Practice of Tragic Clowns. While in seminar classes, you can choose from a variety of tones to set behavior of your Sims; tones will affect the amount of academic benefit your Sim gains from a class. Is your Sim feeling ahead of the curve? They can take it easy and chat with friends. Or maybe your Sim needs to suck up to the professor for a little extra academic boost since they forgot to study. Truly sneaky Sims can always ask another poor sucker (I mean Sim) to attend class for them; all the benefits of actually working hard in class but without the pesky use of your Sim’s valuable time! Be careful though, professors don’t look kindly on getting someone else to do your work. If caught, there are consequences…

Tuesdays and Thursdays your Sim will get out of the classroom for a more interactive academic experience. Grab your Sim an organic brew or energy drink from Roasted Toasted Beans Coffee Shop and head over to the Student Union for a lecture! This is a chance for your Sim to interact with the professor as they impart vital knowledge to eager minds. Ask questions, take notes, and soak up some academic goodness as the professor illustrates theories on the whiteboard! (Or sleep in your chair to make up for the wild party the night before). For Sims who want hands-on learning in a group environment, class activities give your Sim the chance to use academic objects to gain practical knowledge related to their major. Gather with your classmates around campus and break out everything from sketchbooks to skeletons to expand your Sim’s mind!

Sketchbooks and Skeletons?! Really?
Yep! Each Sim is granted an object specific to their major when they enroll. These objects are great for class activities or a bit of extra studying on the side. For example, Communications majors can take their Frequency Fun Mobile Radio Station to the Quad to conduct interviews with other Sims and report on campus events, all while improving their academic performance! In fact, your Sim can learn so much from actions outside of class that skipping a class or two may be okay. (I’m sure your Sim has a good reason for skipping after all)… However, if it is getting close to exam time and you find that your Sim is in need of an academic boost to prepare for the test, don’t forget to study! Sims can study from textbooks, computers, and even their smart phones. While studying can certainly help, more deviously-minded Sims may want to just take the easy route and create a cheat sheet for the exam. Be careful not to get caught though!

Exams are held on Fridays and the final exam is when all of your Sim’s hard work throughout the term will pay off. Make sure your Sim is in a good mood for their exams and is well prepared – failing an exam can have major impact on your final grade.

Why should your Sim care about their grades? Let’s say your Sim has gone to university for a few terms and has earned enough credits to graduate – congratulations! Graduating has several benefits – the first of which is an extra trait slot for your Sim! Add a sixth trait to your Sim to reflect all the personal growth they have undergone during their time in university. Graduating and earning a degree from university will also provide career benefits to your Sim. For example, Sims with a degree in Technology will find better career opportunities in Law Enforcement and Military careers, start at a higher level, earn more pay, and gain an increase in bonus and promotion opportunities! Your Sim’s grades will directly affect the career benefits they receive; Sims who graduate with higher grades instantly get more bonuses.

In The Sims 3 University Life, Sims have access to tons of ways to learn and grow. Spend some time enjoying classes, objects, skills, lectures, class activities, studying and even cheating! Just don’t forget to take a break from all that academic enrichment to hang out with friends and let loose. After all, the reward is in the journey!

Happy Simming!

Brittany Henry, Associate Producer, The Sims 3 University Life

05:20 PM
Posted by: SimGuruBritt

Hi Simmers!

Thanks again for joining us on January 8 for The Sims Live Broadcast where we officially announced The Sims 3 University Life! For those of you who missed it, you may watch the archived recording here . We're thrilled to see all your eager comments and excitement on the forums and we know you have lots of questions for this upcoming EP. Last week, I tackled SimGuruArgus to get him to answer as many of your questions posted in our thread as possible. He thought you all had some really great questions and he's posted the responses below.

I hope you enjoy this Q&A!

Q: Can the college Sims get married & pregnant in college life?
A: No marriage and no pregnancy. It’s kept pretty casual while Sims are at university.

Q: How will joining a sorority or fraternity work? Will Sims have to go through a rush period? Also can we customize how long each semester is.
A: Joining a sorority or fraternity is as easy as selecting it when you first move into the university world. There is no rush period since we wanted these to feel more inclusive than exclusive. There are some pretty great dares you can explore as well. Each time you attend university, you can customize the duration of your term to one or two weeks.

Q: Whilst in the University world, can we visit home? That and can Pets, Paparazzi and Aliens visit this sub-world like Sunset Valley or not like with WA destinations?
A: Since the terms aren't too long, there is no way to visit back home. If you get really homesick, you can drop out, but doing so will sacrifice anything you have spent in paying for that term. Pets will not show up in university, however those pesky Paparazzi and abducting Aliens may pay you a visit while you’re attending.

Q: Will there be an option to add college buildings to your home world so your working Sims can take night classes or so Sims can attend college classes while still living at home?
A: You can definitely add college buildings to your home world through edit town and they will function similarly to Base Game rabbit holes with a few new interactions, but no college classes. While Sims can prepare for university outside of school by building skills and taking the aptitude test, actual credits will not be committed until you finish a term at university.

Q: If you meet a Sim at college, can you bring them back to you home world with you when college is over?
A: You can't immediately bring them back with your Sim when they go home from university since they have to unpack, but you can call them and have them visit your home world once your Sim has returned.

Q: What if your Sim graduates before their friends do? Will there be an option to stay in touch and invite them for a visit like you can do with foreign friends in WA and then invite them to move in that way?
A: If your Sim is a whiz in academics and ends up graduating before their friends, they can always keep in touch by calling their university friends. There is in fact an option to stay in touch with friends post-university and it works much like foreign friends in The Sims 3 World Adventures .

Q: Can you send your Sim's friends and neighbors to college even when you are not playing as them?
A: The only Sims you are able to send off to university are Sims that are part of your active household.

Q: What is the shortest amount of time a Sim can stay at the university? Can you customize how long Sims can attend college?
A: The shortest amount of time a Sim can stay at university is one Sim week and the longest amount of time is two Sim weeks. You are able to customize your stay by selecting one or two terms (one term = one Sim week, two terms = two Sims weeks).

Q: Can Sims get multiple degrees? Like, go and graduate, come home and then go again?
A: Sims can most definitely earn multiple degrees. All of you completionists out there can go nuts!

Q: If I send a married Sim can she invite her spouse to visit her and also can he invite her to visit?
A: No, your Sim's spouse will not be able to visit your Sim while they are at university, but you can always spend a little time in-between terms catching up with loved ones or you may speak to them on your smart phone while away at university.

Q: Are there Secret Societies in the University EP?
A: There are no secret societies in university, but you can apprentice under the almighty mascot.

Q: Can you get kicked out if you misbehave or don't keep up your grades?
A: Your Sim can get kicked out of class for cheating, but your Sim will never be suspended or expelled from university.

Q: I'm wondering if Sims will get additional wish slots when they graduate like they did in The Sims 2 University? Will there be new lifetime wishes or rewards?
A: We do have new lifetime wishes and rewards in The Sims 3 University Life, but we did things a little bit differently than in The Sims 2 University. Instead of getting an additional wish slot for graduating, Sims are granted an additional trait slot as well as other benefits.

Q: Are there spring breaks?
A: Technically, there can be a spring break, but this all depends if you have The Sims 3 Seasons installed and when your term ends.

Q: Will body piercings be reintroduced?
A: Body piercings do not appear in The Sims 3 University Life.

Q: Will Sims have jobs/part time jobs while attending class?
A: While Sims are at university, we definitely make room for them to focus on their Academics. If they had a job in their home world, it will be put on hold while they attend university. There are multiple ways to earn money while at university. The job board is a good place for Sims to start looking for ways to earn extra cash but it is by no means the only way to make money. You’ll have options!

Q: Are there any scholarships teens can apply for?
A: Sims that take the Aptitude Test will have their scores based on their previous accomplishments. This means that certain types of skills, traits, or high school grades that they had as a teen will come into play when calculating their overall score. This allows them to earn financial aid or even gain credits towards their degrees. Also, it is important to note that progress in certain careers also benefit Sims when they attend university.

Q: Are there new recipes? Will there be new recipes for the microwave?
A: There are new ready-to-eat recipes that can be found on the microwave and refrigerator as well as some tasty treats that you can purchase from the new barista bar.

Q: Will there be different kinds of university campuses?
A: There is only one university campus. This campus, however, can be modified using edit town either from your home world or when you arrive in the university world. It really is the cream of the crop though and the one university that all Sims aspire to attend.

Q: What are the new social interactions with the 3 social groups?
A: I don't want to spoil too much here, but we have quite a few new socials that unlock as you progress through the social groups. This ranges from things like taking a self-portrait with your smart phone to showing off a new gizmo.

Q: Can we switch gameplay from university to town?
A: Attending university works like a travel world. Once enrolled, it is best to stay until the end of the term, but you are able to drop out and head back home during the middle of the term. Doing so will cause your Sim to lose any progress and money spent towards earning their degree that term. Once you finish the term or drop out, you will be returned to your home world.

Q: Can Sims get academic probation if they don’t do well in class?
A: No, the only real punishment for not doing well at university is when you are cheating. Other than that, university is very forgiving on performance. Nobody wants to be kicked out, especially if they’re spending their hard earned Simoleons on it. Another important note is that if you get a D or an F, you will either get reduced credits or no credits for that term.

We hope this Q&A can tide you over until The Sims 3 University Life launches on March 5! Thanks for reading!


05:17 PM
Posted by: SimGuruHydra
Categories: PC/Mac Game  Expansion Pack 

Love it, hate it, want one, avoid one, but everyone’s got one — a social life that is. While making the grade is important, The Sims 3 University Life experience is about more than just what you learn in the classroom! It’s about the life your Sim leads outside it. Your Sim can pursue any social life they dream of – from the most popular Sim on campus or the nerdy bookworm that lives in the library. No matter if your Sim is a little socially awkward or completely irresistible they can have a fun and memorable university experience!


Introduced in The Sims 3 University Life are three new social groups: the Jocks, Rebels and Nerds. Your Sim can gain influence with as many of these groups they desire – they are not limited to befriending just one! As your Sim progresses up the social ladder within each group, they will unlock rewards that will make all the effort on their part worth it.

But what are the social groups like? Let me tell you…

Jocks are the Sims who play to win, whether it’s a popularity contest or a match on the Plink Plonk Tennis Table. It’s no wonder that Jocks tend to hang out at B’s Bowlarama where they can work on getting strikes and not striking out with the cute Sim eying their sweet bowling moves. Probably not a surprise either that Jocks throw some of the best parties on campus.

Rebels enjoy going above and beyond the expected and then taking it one step further. Rebels are the Sims who will tag a wall on campus and then add herbs to the bonfire at a local party. You can find Rebels hanging out at The Grotto; a cool place where a Sim can enjoy a game of pool, work on their artistic skills, or savor an organic brew from the Barista Bar.

And last, but definitely not least, are the Nerds. Nerds love to play video games, perform research, win trivia challenges, and aren’t afraid to berate other Sims for their ignorance. Keith’s Komics is the ideal hangout for a Nerd as it has all the lots of hobbies for Nerds to enjoy including, computers, arcade machines and comics, of course!


Keeping up with all the social influence your Sim gains is simple! With a few clicks on their new smart phone they’ll be completely in the know. Just hit ‘Check Social Groups’ to see their current status. But that isn’t the only cool thing the smart phone can do. Maybe your Sim is feeling bold and flirty, then sending a secret admirer text might just catch that special someone’s attention. Alternately, if another Sim has treated you poorly and you want to give them a piece of your mind then go ahead and send them an insulting text. Also if you Sim is looking to cut loose and be single, they can send a break up text to their romantic interest. Additionally, if your Sim is more visual then they might appreciate the new ways to take photos. Now your Sim can take self-portrait snapshots with another Sim, and can even sneak in a romantic kissy photo. These are just a few examples of what your new smart phone can do!

Even outside of the social groups there are a huge variety of social activities and interactions your Sim can partake in. For example, what would university be without parties!? To spice things up, we’ve added two new party types in the mix: Juice Keggers and Bonfires. Parties are a great time to meet new Sims, and if there is a Sim you want to get a little closer to, then go ahead and give them a Heat of the Moment Kiss. There are plenty of other new kiss interactions as well, such as Juiced Kiss and Cinnamon Kiss. These only scratch the surface of the new romantic options that are available in The Sims 3 University Life.

If your Sim isn’t into partying, then there are still plenty of other activities to do. From playing a collegiate sport to posing nude for figure class to becoming a medical test subject and holding a protest, your Sims will find an all-new world to explore! There are also great new social things to do that will contribute to building skills as well. With the new sketchbook object you can ask another Sim to pose for you (even pose nude)! Plus, there is much, much more! But we’ll leave the rest up to you to explore for yourself!

In The Sims 3 University Life, each Sim can build a unique social life that suits their needs. Just don’t get blinded by the awesomeness of your Sim’s social life and forget to send them to class. It’s true that a dream job can be landed based purely on social activities but receiving good grades has its equal advantages!

Happy balancing!

Lauren McLemore, The Sims 3 University Life Assistant Producer

05:00 PM
Posted by: SimGuruLauren