Making and Keeping Friends in The Sims 3
|Relationships Guide||Building Friendships||Social Interactions||Romantic Relations||Romantic Interactions||Traits in Conversation|
This section of the Relationship Guide focuses on building relationships, so that your Sims can later pursue romance, get a best friend, and experience success socially. I'll discuss how to meet Sims with similar interests, how to find out what a Sim likes, and other broad tips that can help with conversation.
The Importance of Charisma
While the Charisma skill is important if you want your Sim to socialize a lot and be very good at it, it's not so important to this guide. Charisma will help a lot when it comes to moving the relationship bar, and helps a bit in all aspects of a Sim's social life, but nearly every Sim will want to form at least a couple of meaningful relationships in their life. Unless they're a green thumb talking to plants, they'll want to chat it up once in a while to meet the social need.
The Social Need
Every Sim has a social need. They need to talk to other Sims to avoid loneliness, or they'll get too depressed to carry on with their daily life. While it's easy enough to have a quick chat on the phone to replenish this need, it's more beneficial for your Sim to visit with others. Not only is socializing helpful from a gameplay perspective, as higher levels of relationships will bring wishes that can be very helpful for getting closer to Lifetime Reward, but also to the richness of gameplay. The Sims 3 will get boring fast if you simply play in Fast Forward mode all the time and never take a look at the behavior and expressions of Sims as they interact.
The Beginnings of a Relationship - Acquaintances
Acquaintances are Sims that your Sim has met, or knows of. The first meeting is an important moment for a Sim looking for a buddy or a date. The Sim you want to befriend will now be in your Sim's list of contacts. These are sorted by the current relationship level from highest to lowest. This can be helpful if your Sim needs that 'one more friend' to get a charisma level, but its main purpose is to help you with your contacts.
Out and About - Meeting Sims
If you want your Sim to build relationships, get a girlfriend or boyfriend, or even start a family, you'll need to take them out of the house. Any Sim met can become a friend. However, you'll have better luck if your Sim goes to places they're interested in. Head to the art gallery if your Sim is artistic. Hit the gym if they're athletic. If your Sim loves the outdoors, head to the pond. You're more likely to meet Sims with similar taste by visiting these places. When your Sim can enthusiastically converse about a topic another Sim likes, you're more likely to see the relationship bar scooting quickly to the right.
During a conversation with another Sim, take into account what your Sim knows about the other, and if they know nothing, learn! Use the Get to Know friendly interaction to strike up conversation that leads the Sim to reveal something about themselves. Once you know a trait, look for ways you can impress the other Sim. Talk about things the two have in common. If nothing else, you can use the chat interaction, strike up jokes, and tell stories. If you know a Sim's career, enthuse about it to them and they'll usually accept your Sim's interest in what they do. The most important thing is to mix it up. You shouldn't use the same interaction twice in a row unless your Sim is Never Dull or the other Sim is Friendly.
If your Sim's going to hang out with their new friend, make sure to set the mood. Invite them over and order pizza or prepare a meal. Make sure you have entertainment appropriate for the other Sim. Athletes might like playing a sport together, whereas a technophobe would not want to watch tv. This will give you more time to interact with the Sim. They're also more likely to be in a good mood, making them more receptive to social interactions.
Group Activities to Boost Friendship: There are a number of things you can do while building friendships, so that your Sims can have fun while getting to know one another. The most basic group interaction is eating a meal. Sims sitting at the table together will talk and strengthen relations. Of course, there's also television. Sitting near each other and watching a tv show both Sims enjoy can be a good booster. It'll also ensure the other Sim is having fun, so that future interaction is more successful. If your Sim is talking to another, and one of their other friends is nearby, ask them to join in. Your Sim can do this too.
Other ideas for group activities are playing video games, swimming, playing in sprinklers, having a picnic, sitting around the fire pit, playing Gnubb (Ambitions), sitting in a hot tub (Late Night), fishing, and dancing.
Key to your success in building friendships in the Sims 3 is maintaining them. You can't expect to build a long-term relationship if you let the Sim keep slipping out of friend status. Moving them further toward Best Friends is crucial. You want them to eventually become an old friend as your Sim ages. One key thing to do is use the phone from time to time. It's not a relationship builder, but it can put a stop to relationship decay. Since Sims grow more distant each day, their relationship decays and the meter starts moving left toward acquaintance.
When your Sim has multiple friendships and wants to keep them up, one good ways is to invite Sims over and Party. That way you can interact with multiple Sims of interest, all in one setting. With Late Night, you can also consider a group outing.
Making friends is a big part of The Sims 3. What we've learned here will be key to building relationships, and is the foundation upon which romantic relatipnships can be built.