Author Topic: Household Skills Project Mk 3  (Read 29639 times)

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #165 on: June 23, 2018, 11:12:25 AM »

Sal was tutoring Polly in laser rhythm-a-con when she stopped listening, crossed her eyes…


…and had a birthday.



Like Lucy, she was valedictorian – or would have been, if she'd attended graduation.  Since Sal's age bar was now full, she stayed at home for more skill tutoring instead.  Besides, the family needed to get ready for an Important Event that afternoon.



That's Aric in the dark red jacket.  Ebony was also invited but stayed at home with the twins, who were still toddlers.


Aric's definitely inherited the Einstein jaw :P.

The newlyweds spent one last night in their childhood home before leaving for their new house with their cats and dogs.  Or at least, Lucy drove off in Don's old speedboat, with a couple of strangely elongated pets.


Thankfully, landing on their little island restored them both to their normal shapes.


Romeo and the other two must have teleported, because they were waiting outside the house when Lucy arrived.


(Yes, that's Lea's house again, specially adapted to be pet-friendly.)

Lucy and Romeo had tried for a baby on their wedding night and had a son, Troy, shortly after moving house.

Back home, Polly was getting more tutoring – and maxed her first skill, scuba diving.


Sal got her to level 10 in laser rhythm-a-con as well and then started training her in athletics.  (I believe that's the first time this family have used their gym, although it's hard to keep them out of the pool – the exact opposite of the Golds who lived in an earlier version of the house.)


They were together in the garden between training sessions, Polly tending her plants and Sal playing in the sprinkler, when Grim turned up.


"OK, fair enough.  I was hoping to get to a hundred but 96 isn't too bad.  And Polly's had a good start.  She can see this through on her own now."


RIP, Salvatore Haskill.  He was a likeable, multi-skilled Sim who dedicated his life to saving others and passing on his knowledge to his children (when he wasn't flirting and pulling goofy faces with Jodie).

Polly, of course, displaced her grief at her father's death into more skilling.


I have to say she isn't the most interesting of Sims to watch – she's usually at the library, with her nose in a book.  A couple of days later, she maxed cooking and achieved her lifetime wish.


I'd planned to play the last generation as straight as possible: only five traits, no use of the brain enhancement machine and no life extensions from travelling.  But then I realised that the training dummy and board breaker had disappeared from the family inventory at some point.  I  wasn't too bothered about the dummy but Polly was going to need the board breaker if she wanted to progress beyond the three levels of Sim Fu she could pick up from the book.  So Polly retrieved the family's Certificate of Partnership and set off for Shang Simla.

While she was there, she caught at least one of each type of koi (I was now thinking of a complete mounted fish collection), reached level 10 of photography and came pretty close to maxing martial arts.


After a minimal stay back home in Isla Paradiso, she took a trip to Champs les Sims (the nectar machines had also gone missing).  Apart from a brief fishing trip and the occasional excursion to fulfil sightseeing wishes, she settled down in the Catania Café, where she read her way through all three nectar making books.


Then she got out her guitar and picked up another level and several friends by playing for tips.


From the perspective of getting through her task of maxing every skill in the shortest possible time, it would have made sense to have stayed in France until her visa ran out.  But I've always been a softie when it comes to granting my Sims' wishes and she was holding three high-value fishing wishes that were very unlikely to trigger in Champs les Sims.  So she cut the holiday short…


…and went home to Isla Paradiso to fulfil them.


Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #166 on: July 01, 2018, 09:07:39 AM »

The collection of mounted fish was now almost complete, so I sent Polly to Egypt to catch two that were still missing: crocodile and mummy fish.  Since she'd now maxed fishing, it only took her a few hours.  The rest of her stay was spent playing the musical instruments she'd packed in her luggage.


She was (of course) at the library when she aged up to adult.


Aric's wife, Ebony, had been reading a book nearby and helped her celebrate.


Romeo had also been there earlier, playing his laser rhythm-a-con (he'd obviously never heard that you're supposed to be quiet in libraries) but had left before Polly started sparkling.  He hadn't aged well  :(.


Polly had mastered an impressive fifteen skills as a young adult and was at a high level in three or four more.  Could she finish before becoming an elder?  She looked to be on course but I was pretty sure that the pace would slow down from now on, because she'd already done all of the fast-building skills and was running out of things that she could learn from books.   


Even with things like sculpting and music, where she had a head start from her toddler and child toys, progress was noticeably slower than when she was reading. 

She could have learned handiness entirely from books, apart from fixing that one leaky shower.  Most of the plumbing was unbreakable, since Sal had completed the Plumber challenge, and he'd upgraded the dishwasher to be unbreakable as well.  Steel bladder had been one of Polly's earlier rewards and she didn't really do much apart from skill, eat, sleep and shower, so it seemed unlikely that anything else would break.  On the other hand, I'd been trying to do every upgrade during the game and there were still two left.  So Polly installed Inkinization 2.0 on a tattoo chair and changed the fire colour on a stove that briefly appeared in the front garden before returning to the library to finish reading Puddles and Electricity Don't Mix.


A week or so after her adult birthday, she took a trip into the future.  She wasn't any better at passing through the portal than Romeo had been  ::).


She was delighted to find a whole new library, complete with a series of books for a whole new skill, bot building.


Somewhat to my surprise, she also enjoyed learning advanced technology.  Travelling by windcarver, sleeping in a dream pod and talking to and about sprites were fun!


With the combination of her fast learner reward, the mech gnome, Chinese incense and my having finally worked out how to influence dreams effectively, she maxed advanced tech far faster than any of the earlier Haskills.  Even though she devoted some time to other skills…



…she was ready to return to Isla Paradiso after three or four days.  (In retrospect, I should probably have kept her in the future for longer – dreaming about writing seemed to have a very powerful effect, the one time she tried it.)

Back home, she made and used a succession of potent skill boosters – with no effect whatsoever  >:(.  I can see that the Late Night skills might not have been coded into Supernatural but surely it should have helped the base-game ones?  Maybe it was the increasing bugginess that was starting to affect the game.

After a certain amount of frustration (and possibly a few rude words  :-[), I realised that she had another route to improving her skill learning.  She was a level 10 mixologist by now – why not buy a professional bar and try skill gain drinks?


It worked pretty well – although the four-hour moodlet duration seems very short when you're trying to max loads of skills.


And then another set of birthday sparkles hit.


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Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #167 on: July 01, 2018, 09:18:19 AM »
Late in the evening of the day after her elder birthday, Polly maxed her last base-game/EP skill, writing.


It had been an eventful day for the Haskills – Lucy had become a grandmother that morning, when Troy's new wife, Deirdre, had a baby boy, whom they called Mark.  I don't think Lucy got the chance to meet her grandson: sadly, she died of old age shortly before Polly finished her last book.  Romeo had gone some time before.  The next morning, Polly drove out to her new property, Oceanview Cemetery, and retrieved their gravestones from the mausoleum.


Then she placed them in the cemetery, along with the earlier Isla Paradiso Haskills (apart from Don, whose large tombstone had disappeared soon after his death).

                                                  Gloria, Harley and Marina, Salvatore and Jodie, Romeo and Lucy

Given that the game file was now approaching unplayable levels of bugginess (NRaas Story Progression on top of Isla Paradiso may not have been my brightest idea), I was very tempted to stop right there.  But Polly wouldn't really have completed every skill from the game – there were still a couple of store skills to go.  So she bought a violin and slot machine and launched into her two final skills.


As an artistic virtuoso, she loved the violin…


…although I was disappointed to find that there was no benefit from the toddler xylophone skill.  She had to start from level zero, like anyone else.

Gambling was another matter altogether.  Polly suddenly revealed a hidden and previously unsuspected unlucky trait.


Or something.  Certainly, she did startlingly badly.  She had almost permanent 'losing streak' moodlets and the poor slot machine came in for a lot of kicking.

Finally, at the age of 81, she maxed both the violin and gambling skills…


…and the challenge was completed.

Of all of the Haskills, Polly had had the most constrained life.  She'd somehow managed to max charisma, mostly through playing for tips, but since leaving school she'd never really had any proper relationships with other Sims.

But now that she'd completed her task, all bets were off.  Maybe it wasn't too late.  A quick trawl through the family's chests showed that she didn't have the ingredients for a Fountain of Youth elixir but there were always potions.


Or maybe not.  That unlucky streak made itself known again.


On the other hand, she had loads of unspent happiness points.  She could skip the experimenting stage and just buy a Young Again potion.  So that’s what she did.

She looked at the flask doubtfully.  Was she really supposed to drink something so pink and, well, glowy?  Then she shrugged and knocked it back.


The unbirthday sparkles gathered and swirled... and her youth was restored.

After a good night's sleep and a session with the chest of drawers, reinstating her old wardrobe, Polly bought a speedboat in her favourite colour, got into it…


…and set out for a whole new life, free of skilling requirements.


The certificate collection

They're all Polly's apart from piano and martial arts.  Those certificates seem to have got lost in the post.

                                                                        Athletic, logic, charisma, gardening, handiness
                                                                                 painting, writing, guitar, cooking, fishing
                                                            martial arts, photography, nectar making, sculpting, inventing
                                                                               piano, drums, bass, mixology, scuba diving

And the weird certificates in the bottom row: despite appearances, riding (although it's totally blank if viewed), laser rhythm-a-con and driving, plus Polly's school diploma and Marie's science plaque.

The mounted fish collection

                                                                  Minnow, anchovy, goldfish, alley catfish, jellyfish
                                                    rainbow trout, red herring, tuna, tragic clownfish, Siamese catfish
                                                                              piranha, blowfish, salmon, swordfish
                                                                      black goldfish, shark, angelfish, vampire fish
                                                                        lobster, robot fish, deathfish, frog, snail
                                                      doitsu koi, kawarimono koi, ochiba koi, tancho koi, dragonfish

                                                     crayfish, crocodile, mummy fish, sea sludge, sewer trilobite
                                                kissing gourami, sea bat starfish, Linckia starfish, ninja starfish, toad
                                             luminous salamander, fairy damsel, sea urchin, sea anemone, sea polyp
                                                                   hermit crab, octopus, squid, eel, seahorse
                                                                            three-eyed fish, rainbow snail

The gnome collection
(or what's left of it)

                              Inventing gnome, Cracklin Nackerbell, s-GNOME-man Bittertotter, Troglodyte, sculpting gnome, laundry gnome.
Mech gnome, Evil Mr Gnome, Mysterious Mr Gnome (the only one left alive and it looked as though he wouldn't be around for much longer), Mr Mariner Gnome, freezer bunny gnome, Zenyatta, Cranstan Boonitz
                              Brawn Brawn G'nome, Little Léon, Lounge Lizard gnome, Felix Felinenimus, Bucktooth Butternut

All of the graduation gnomes had died of old age and the Egyptian, Chinese and dog gnomes had disappeared from the family inventory.  The famous Haskills were never given a Blingaboo as a celebrity gift and the plasma fruit in the gardens had failed to attract any vampire gnomes.

And, despite my fondness for ghosts, I'm still awaiting my first-ever Gnome of the Darned  :-\.

House 23 summary
Skill: laser rhythm-a-con

Career: Lifeguard
LTW: Seaside Saviour
Level 10 scuba diving, athletic, charisma, logic, science, laser rhythm-a-con and cooking

Jodie Burgess
(Traits: loner, grumpy, frugal, family oriented, neat)
LTW: Grand Explorer
Level 10 laser rhythm-a-con

Traits: excitable, heavy sleeper, animal lover, loves the heat, loser (+ virtuoso from nerd influence)
LTW: Ark Builder (requirements met but didn't trigger)
Level 10 laser rhythm-a-con (plus two challenges)

Romeo Vidal
Traits: flirty, artistic, virtuoso, irresistible, great kisser (+ supernatural sceptic from nerd influence – one of the daughters was looking through my spreadsheet and pointed out that I'd accidentally missed a trait).
LTW: Heartbreaker
Level 10 charisma, laser rhythm-a-con and fishing

Traits: artistic, genius, bookworm, virtuoso, loves the outdoors
LTW: Renaissance Sim
Level 10 laser rhythm-a-con, scuba diving, cooking. logic, photography, martial arts, alchemy, nectar making, fishing, social networking, street art, science, guitar, piano, charisma, inventing, riding, gardening, mixology, handiness, advanced technology, bot building, painting, sculpting, athletic, drums, bass, writing, violin and gambling
Building/property: Oceanview Cemetery
Unique rewards: Meditative Trance Sleep and Time Remote Control (which was completely unnecessary, since Halley was given one, but I wanted to complete the set of rewards).  In fact, she ended up with several other unique rewards, since I didn't have to ration them any more.

And that's it for the Haskills – but the game's not quite over.  There remains the little matter of the unfinished supermaxes.  I've been playing a series of one-Sim games on longer lifespans alongside the last few generations, trying to tie up the loose ends.  When they're finished, expect another post.

Offline CeresIn

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I'm glad to see you finished your project! Very good job! I spent the last days reading until I got up to date and it was fun. The collections are very impressive, they are one of my favorite things in the sims 3.

This project is still tempting me even though I don't have time to play, it seems to me that I'll have no choice but to make me a couple of hours a week to start playing it. ;D

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3
« Reply #169 on: July 13, 2018, 01:13:37 PM »
Thanks, @CeresIn, for being such a loyal reader :).  The collections ended up being one of my favourite parts of the project – I think I'm going to dig back into old saves and see if I can assemble a Haskill museum.

Epilogue: The Missing Supermaxes


Meet Dave Drummer (his name was supposed to be a placeholder but it stuck).  Dave moved into Sunset Valley, built a small, simply-furnished house and spent almost all of his waking hours playing the drums.  I kept expecting the Frios, who lived next door, to come round and complain but they were remarkably tolerant neighbours.  Still, it must have been a relief when he reached level five and decamped to the park to play for tips.


Dave had a steady flow of opportunities, probably helped by Late Night being the only expansion that was installed, and finished Drum Star before I got seriously bored.


Next up was Ivory Tickler.

I seem to have forgotten to take any pictures of Ivory in CAS, so here she is shortly after arriving in Lucky Palms.


She was astonishingly lucky with the opportunities and became my first musician to complete the Star challenge before the other two.


The tips, on the other hand, took quite a while – the townsfolk didn't seem all that keen on standing around in the park listening to Ivory playing.  But eventually she too achieved her supermax.


Barbara Bayce was originally created as the founder of a base-game immortal dynasty.


She was a scientist who supermaxed gardening and managed to complete twelve Black Ops before qualifying for ambrosia – I was considering making it a self-imposed rule for that dynasty that they all had to do twice the usual number.  Unfortunately, the combination of her son being an irritating git who seemed to repel opportunities and the plague of phone calls asking the family out on dates eventually drove me to abandon the game.  I still have a soft spot for Barbara and her frumpy dress sense, though, and was delighted to realise that her name made her a perfect fit for this game.


She settled happily into Riverview and acquired a wide circle of friends, who were happy to throw tips her way.  Like Dave, she did reasonably well with the opportunities and it only took her a few weeks to supermax the skill.



Tom Collins, as his name suggests, was out to supermax mixology.  Since the drink-serving challenge was the one that had defeated Margarita Haskill, he concentrated on moonlighting as soon as his skill was high enough.


Unlike the musicians, Tom was a multi-skilled Sim, who ended up maxing gardening, cooking and charisma as well as mixology.  Frankly, it was good not to have to concentrate 100% on the drink-mixing, which quickly became very boring.  The idea was that the fruit from his garden would find its way into drinks for impressing celebrities but that didn't happen much in the end.

I found that Waylon's was by far the most reliable venue for a steady flow of customers for his cocktails, and he mostly hung out there, even though he kept getting pop-up messages from the resident mixologist telling him that he was far too good for the place.


I'm pretty sure he did moonlight at all of the bars and lounges eventually – and learned some of their special drink recipes along the way.  When he'd finally knocked out Master Mixologist, he alternated days at home, creating drinks at his own bar, and touring the town knocking back serious numbers of beverages in the hope of identifying their ingredients (which sounds pretty unlikely to me, especially after a lot of cocktails  ::)).  Tom's supermax took a very long time indeed – even on the long lifespan, he was well into adulthood by the time he finished.


For a change, I uninstalled Late Night and switched on Into the Future instead.


This is Laszlo Rithmik, would-be laser rhythm-a-con supermaxer.


Despite completing fifteen opportunities, he didn't become a Star.  I wasn't too surprised by this – Lucy received only a few ops, possibly because of the loser trait I'd saddled her with in a successful attempt to get the last graduation ribbon, but Jodie was always being asked to play at various award ceremonies.  I hadn't kept count but was reasonably certain she'd done more than ten opportunities.

Looking online, this seems to be a known bug.  There's a mod to fix it (apparently, the problem is that the only reward for completing a laser rhythm-a-con op is skill gain and paying opportunities are the ones that count).  I didn't have the enthusiasm to install the mod and try again, so don't have personal knowledge of whether it works.

And finally, it occurred to me that I still hadn't done the band career properly.  Welcome back to some old friends: Alan Archer, Betty-Belinda Brown, Isobel Irving and Ken Kanaka from The Island, aka that little-known band The Evictees.


This was another one that dragged on.  Even with all four band members under my control, the first few opportunities were slow to arrive.  After that, it picked up a bit and I suddenly realised that their next gig would be the fifteenth.


Alan went to Ruby Muddler to collect their fee (all the way down to the ground floor and then back up the stairs on the other side – I'm really getting to dislike the Banzai Lounge for that) – and Ruby got stuck.  Fortunately, an amusing greeting fixed that and the band got paid.


No pop-up.  Oh well, not all challenges produce one.  I went to have a look at their skill journals.


Nope.  Well, maybe the sixteenth gig would be the charm.  It wouldn't be the first time that the actual requirement for something was one more than the game said – and at least it would give Alan and Betty time to max their instrumental skills (Ken and Isobel already had). 

A couple of days later, BB was invited to bring the band along to try and impress the snobby clientele at the Prosper Room.  And the challenge registered.


Immediately afterwards, Ken's phone rang.  Would The Evictees be willing to provide half-time entertainment at the stadium?  They were practically next door and it was showing up as a live op.  They hurried over to give one final performance and see how powerful the Gig Master effect was (not very, as it turns out).  It was enough to propel Ken to five-star celebrity status.  He and Isobel were keen to perform yet more gigs and, in her case, to become as famous as Ken already was.

It had the opposite effect on Alan and Betty:


Rather meanly, I left then there, forever standing outside the sports stadium, with the band's future uncertain.

And that really is the end for the Household Skills Project (with the possible exception of putting together a museum of all the collections).  It's been part of my life for 6½ years – I first started working on the rules at the beginning of 2012 – and I've learnt a lot about The Sims 3 from playing it.  It feels very odd that it's over at last.

What next?  Not sure yet.  There a quite a few badges that I've not yet earned, particularly from Supernatural.  I may well play a Random Town Jump at some point.  And I may try a more conventional Life States Dynasty when I've recovered from the skill challenge overload :).

Online deedee_828

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3 - COMPLETED
« Reply #170 on: December 02, 2018, 12:18:59 AM »
Hey Hazel, wonderful challenge and my hat's off to you! I just found this recently and am amazed at how long you stuck with it! I'm currently doing a Town Jump game and story but all the skilling and supermaxing you had to do for this is way beyond me! If you do give a Town Jump game and story a try, I'll be sure to follow it! Happy Simming!

Offline hazelnut

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Re: Household Skills Project Mk 3 - COMPLETED
« Reply #171 on: August 06, 2019, 01:33:22 PM »
Sorry, I somehow managed to completely miss this until now.  Thank you for reading and commenting :)

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