The main focus of University Life is, quite obviously, your Sim’s time at Uni, studying, partying, and the rewards it brings. Aspects of the game, however, span all ages of your Sim’s life, whether it’s new activities to enjoy, or preparing them for the best start at Uni.
Before we look at life on campus, we’ll look at how the expansion pack impacts your main town.
This expansion pack comes with 3 new challenging skills, Street Art, Social Networking and Science.
The Street Art skill lets you paint/tag walls and floors all over the world, not just in your home. However the police don’t really like you doing this, so be careful!
Social Networking is fun, and is increased by texting other Sims with the new Smartphone or writing blogs. Whenever you see or do something interesting, like buy new objects or see a movie, you can write a blog and gain followers. Then you can ask donations from your followers to help support your blog, eventually turning a decent profit, so you don’t actually need to work for a living. If you are at university, instead of asking for donations you can also ask for knowledge to increase your degree progression.
The third skill and the one I am personally most excited about is the Science skill. Get ready to release your inner nerd by studying science. You do this on the Science Research Station or The Cerebralizing Brain Enhancing Machine. The samples you get by analysing various items, and can be sold at the science lab for money. When you research a harvestable, you can increase the quality and with enough Science skill you can clone a sample instead of selling it. The twist with this is that you can get other Sims’ DNA and then clone them!
Another new aspect that impacts all sims’ lives is Social Groups. Actions you do in the game increases your standing with the Jocks, Rebels or Nerds. For instance studying science or reading comic books increases the nerds standing. Using herbs or tagging places with street art skill are rebellious actions and jocks like it when you practise sports. You can also buy your way into the groups, by spending Lifetime Happiness points.
[expand title=”Click here to see all the ways to increase Social Group Standing”]
|Attend Parties||Ask other Nerds about their degree||Add herbs to food|
|Bowling||Be enthustiastic about Comic Books||Burn herbs in a fireplace or bonfir|
|Collegiate sports in the stadium||Berate Ignorance||Complain about the world on a podium|
|Complete Jock Opportunities||Boast about gamer skills||Complete Rebel Opportunities|
|Do a Keg Stand||Complete Nerd Opportunities||Dare other Sims|
|Gossip about roommates to Jocks||Do Scientific research||Dumpster Dive|
|Have a Bonfire||Do trivia Challenges with other Nerds||Interact with, socialize and compliment Rebels|
|Host a Bonfire or Juice KeggerParty||Interact with, socialize and compliment Nerds||Get a drink from the Barista Bar|
|Interact with, socialize and compliment Jocks||Lifetime Happiness Reward of 1000 points||Give a passionate Speech|
|Lifetime Happiness Reward of 1000points||Play arcade machines||Hand out Protest Flyers|
|Master Juice Pong||Play video games||Lifetime Happiness Reward of 1000 points|
|Perform the school cheer||Practice your pick-uplines on other Nerds||Organize protests|
|Play table tennis||Show other Sims gross Videos on your Smartphones||Practice your pick-uplines on other Rebels|
|Play with the flying disc||Solve equations on the Whiteboard||Rile the crowd at a protest|
|Practice pick-up lines Jocks||Tell stories or jokes to other Nerds||Tag or leave murals around the world (street art skill)|
|Take a photo with a friend using the SmartPhone||Throw testtubes intobonfires||Use a megaphone to rant or declare your love|
|Take a self-portrait using the SmartPhone||Use the Brain Enhancing Machine|
|Tell stories or jokes to other Jocks||Work on the group science project|
Being in a social group gives some perks! You can unlock new socials, extra traits, and at lvl 10 of each social group, you will get an exclusive job offer – Game Developer, Sports Agent or Art Appraiser. The careers are not that difficult once you get into them, the hard part is getting to the top of the social group in the first place. These careers are very profitable so definitely worth getting to the top!
[expand title=”Click here to see all the perks Social Groups can give”]
|1||Prep – No Perks||Math Curious – No Perks||Hipster– No Perks|
|2||Wannabe – School Cheer & host Juice Kegger Parties!||Amateur Gamer – Receive a game console (family inventory) & unlock online gaming on game consoles (not on the computer)||Line Crosser – Receive a Street Art Bag and a Megaphone & can steal exam answers on the computer|
|3||In Crowd Newbie – No Perks||Cool with the Uncool – No Perks||Nonconformist – No Perks|
|4||Wingman – Host Bonfire Parties & take Self Portraits with the Smartphone||Trivia Guru – Trivia Challenges with other Sims unlocked||Trivia Guru – Hunger Strike Protests with the megaphone & ask “What is Wrong with the World” on the podium & Rebel will be better at cheating, less likely caught cheating|
|5||Party Sponge – No Perks||Junior Techie – No Perks||Bohemian – No Perks|
|6||Popular – Host Parties for Charity||Sci-Fi Fan – New Mind Meld interaction, improves relationships with other Sims||Agitator– Rebel smartphone skin & Rowdy Protests with the megaphone|
|7||Hot Stuff – No Perks||Brain Trustee – No Perks||Revolutionary – No Perks|
|8||Debutante – Pick another Trait||Nerd Elite – Pick another Trait||Maverick– Pick another Trait|
|9||Super Popular – No Perks||Think Tank Driver – No Perks||Cool Cat – No Perks|
|10||Big Sim on Campus – Unlocks the Sports Agent Career||Game Master – Unlocked the Video Game Developer Career||Trendsetter – Unlocked the Art Appraiser Career|
Herbs and Coffee Bar
Mentioned a little bit above, but this pack comes with 17 new herbs, we posted about the new coffee bar and the herbs here.
This pack’s occult Sim sees the return of PlantSims from TS2, and they’ve had a makeover! Instead of being a side effect of over fertilization, PlantSims now originate in a lab. If you’re not lucky enough to meet and befriend one, you can send your sims to the School of Science on campus to volunteer as a test subject. There, they may be lucky – or unlucky – enough to come down with Botanitis Minorous.
Or they can perform science experiments on seeds in the hope of their genetic experiments producing a forbidden fruit seed, which can be planted by a gardener with skill of 7 or higher. This will either produce an edible forbidden fruit, which may turn your Sim, or a Plant Sim baby – not for nothing was my first plant baby called Mandrake!
Plant Sims now cover all the age groups, and have fewer needs to care for – there’s no hunger, bladder or hygiene motives – instead they have one motive called Water, which combines aspects of all three – after all water is essential to plants. They can absorb Water via their skin in the shower for example, or soak up puddles from broken appliances.
Plant Sims have a lot in common with fairies, with regards to their gardening abilities, and can also curse or enchant Sims with their kisses which gives a negative or positive moodlet respectively to the receiving Sim.
The clothes are mainly for the new social groups, jock, rebel and nerds types.
The new objects include a lot of new entertainment and skill objects.
Protests are a new rebel action but there are so many options, with it that can advance ordinary Sims too like easier to find resources, increased salary, receive more lifetime happiness points or faster to learn skills. The table below shows all the protests you can do, those in bold are the ones that give you real rewards.
[expand title=”Click here for the full list of Protests”]
|Astronauts||Why send Sims to space when they can be sent to an office instead?||1|
|Atoms||How can we trust something so tiny and mysterious?||1|
|Beetles||They are gross, small and have way too many legs.||1|
|Clowns||What is entertaining about too much make up, a wig and red noses?||1|
|Computers||If we’re not careful, they’ll turn us into batteries!||1|
|Criminals||Without criminals, there would be no crime||2|
|Doctors||Sims should be able to heal themselves!||1|
|Few World Resources||If succesful, Bugs, Gems and Metals will be easier to find for a few days!||3|
|Firefighters||For those who want to save their own lives in an emergency||2|
|Fishing||Leave the fish alone!||2|
|Gardening||Gardening puts holes in the earth, one plant at a time.||2|
|Handcuffs||Why are we punishing Sims’ hands?||1|
|Interior Design||What’s wrong with exterior design?||2|
|Inventing||What good has ever come out of inventing things?||2|
|Jellyfish||They are the silent, gooey predators of the ocean.||1|
|Llamas||These are clever and dangerous beasts.||1|
|Low Wages||A succesful potrest gives employed Sims a raise, effective immediately||3|
|Masks||Hiding who you are is always suspicious||1|
|Nectar||The life essense of plants? Or something far more sinister?||2|
|Nessie||Becuse the world has too many elusive, aquatic dinosaurs!||1|
|Not Enough Lifetime Happiness||Receive more Lifetime Happiness for a few days from a successful protest!||3|
|Painting||Smwearing colors on a canvas is so old fashioned.||2|
|Photography||Capturing moments in time is so two-dimensional||2|
|Police||Who needs law enforcement any ways?||1|
|Private Investigators||No more private investigations!||2|
|Radition||The silent, invisible, odorless, menace.||1|
|Rings||What are rings if not handcuffs for your fingers?||1|
|Sculpting||Creating something beautiful from nothing is overrated!||2|
|Stylists||Who are they to assign style?||2|
|Unicorns||Down with these beautiful, mythical creatures!||1|
|Unskilled Sims||Staging a successful protest speeds up skill learning for a while!||3|
|Yeti||Show me a Yeti and I’ll show you a problem.||1|
If you want to start in an expensive and pretty house, but cannot quite afford it yet. You can turn it into an apartment in edit town.
Instead of buying the house you will then rent it, it sadly does come with 7 roommates, but they behave well!
You can also rent out your house if you have free space. You have to be the owner, by going to real estate menu on your smart phone you can decide how many roommates you want to have, they pay rent to you, might help out a starting self-employed Sim!
Preparing before University
Going to university does not just start when you move to university it starts (long) before that. Before you go to university you should take the aptitude test, this test can give you points towards the degree and even a scholarship. Traits, skills and career progression have influence on this test.
[expand title=”This table shows you which skills, traits and careers are important to get the complete 400 skill for each degree.”]
(+27 points per skill level)
(+83 point per trait)
(+39 points per career level)
No Sense of Humour
|Science & Medicine||Fishing
Loves the Outdoors
[expand title=”And here is a table that shows which of these traits and skills can be given/taught to the kids from which age.”]
|Toddler||Same as the Baby traits||Walking
You need these 3 Skills allow you to be able to pick traits when they age up.Logic (Baby Brainiac Peg Box)
Guitar (Rip Co. Xylophone)
Handiness (Genesis Building Blocks)
Painting – Yellow Books (finger painting 101, handprints of the masters, don’t stay within the lines)
Logic – Pink Books (counting for those who cannot, squares are not triangles, being smart for fun and profit)
Writing – Green Books (bluish eggs with a side of pastrami, frank I’m not, oh the destinations you’ll briefly visit)
No Sense of humour
Rebellious+all previous traits
Logic (Chess Board, Science Bench or Book)
Handiness (Genesis Building Blocks) – This will increase up to level 3, but won’t actually appear until teen
Cooking (Toy Stove/Bake Stall) – This will increase up to level 3, but won’t actually appear until teen
Social Networking (Smart Phone) – This will increase up to level 3, but won’t actually appear until teen
Also get good grades so that you can pick the traits when the Sim ages up
|Teen/Young Adult/Adult/Elder||All traits available||All skills available|
Going to University
I’ve noticed that doing the max amount of points is HARD, your Sim will have to constantly attend classes, exams and study, leaving not much time for food, rest or socializing. It is better to go a few times more with less points each than to try to get them in one go, my Sim got an F while she was a nerdy Sim!
Your Sim will walk to a taxi with a suitcase and you get a loading screen that will load the uni town.
The university world consists of a central campus with the main university buildings, science/art/business building and a student union. Around the central campus are some shops, hangout spots and the houses.
You can rent your own house or join a dormitory which is rent free. There are three versions of dormitories, sororities, fraternities and mixed genders.
What I’ve noticed in the sororities I’ve played, girls are slobs. They will not do laundry or clean up their own dishes, Bonehilda from the Supernatural pack can help a lot only she also does not do laundry. I suggest removing the laundry machine asap.
The first day your sim will want to go to the student union to meet some fellow students, professors and get freebies from the stand. Check the class schedule to see when your Sims’ classes are.
On Monday and Wednesday there are classes in the university building, Tuesday has a class in the student union, in this class you can ask questions, fall asleep (learning through osmosis works in university town) or take notes. Thursday is practical class day, depending on your degree you do various things. For example the communication degree broadcasts a radio report outside and the business degree presents reports in the student union. And on Friday you have final exams.
All these classes increase your degree progression, but just following classes is not enough you do have to study on the computer or with fellow Sims. Another way to increase your degree progression is to use the special degree equipment that you get when from the start of your university time. The communication degree gets a Mobile Radio Station, the Workforce Warrior Business Planner, “Them Bones” Anatomy Skeleton, Brain Enhancing Machine or Sketchbook.
Going to university has the obvious perks of extending the Sims’ lifetime (aging is off at university), socializing with other Sims and building up your skills that can help you in the homeworld. There is also the fact that a degree has direct inpact on career progression and salary.
[expand title=”This table shows which degree benefits what career.”]
|Degree||Benefits which Career|
|Science & Medicine||ScienceMedicine|
|Physical Education||Professional Sports|
This Expansion Pack adds a LOT of gameplay, if you are a player this pack is definitely worth getting. The social groups, new skills, going to university, the new careers are all very fun and give a lot of playing time.
For builders the new apartment lots and dormitories are a good reason to build large houses. There are also a lot of new (entertainment) items that will help decorate the large houses.
For me personally the only downside to this expansion pack is the loading screen to the University Town. We have been seriously spoiled since The Sims 2 that we hardly ever have a loading screen except when travelling to France/China/Egypt. And I find that loading the university town takes unusually long on my fast computer.
Thanks a lot to EA UK for supplying me with a Review version of The Sims 3 University Life!
Bonus Picture, recognize the game my Sim is playing?