Author Topic: Mid-Season Major: Self-Employed Expert  (Read 4654 times)

Offline Metropolis Man

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Re: Mid-Season Major: Self-Employed Expert
« Reply #75 on: June 18, 2018, 08:37:34 AM »
I added IronicBeauty and Nomac to the leaderboard despite being DNF's. The participation component in the World Ranking will help you, guys. And with this event, you get double participation.

Offline GlazeyLady

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Re: Mid-Season Major: Self-Employed Expert
« Reply #76 on: June 18, 2018, 08:38:46 AM »
I found some advice in another forum regarding pet clinics and tested it out - it actually worked very well and almost all customers gave a 5-star rating from the beginning - here's what I did:
  • Started both sims with around a 4-level skill - not sure if it helped, but intuitively it seemed like a good idea to start with some skill
  • Added to the ambience a LOT - I used pictures on the walls and the Suit of Armor
  • Hired two additional vets as soon as I could and changed responsibilities on both to not treat clients - so they only cleaned up (I only had 1 in practice, and that wasn't enough to keep up with the mess since you can't direct them to clean up when a mess is made
  • I waited to greet a client until after they noticed how awesomely the place was decorated - that usually generated a rating of 4 by the time the pet went on the table
  • Early in a shift or if there weren't a lot of messes, I had the additional vets make de-stress cure - (not in the game now and don't remember what it's called). I kept all pets stress-free - that often got the customer to think about their pet not being stressed which had a positive impact on rating
  • Once the pet was cured, I canceled the automatic Bill the Owner action and instead did the Call a Good Pet action, and then billed the owner - prices were set at the lowest point, and these two actions almost always turned the rating to 5
  • The only perks I bought were the additional vets, the Patient Clients one, and the Vet Rush
  • One of the posts I read said that buying the better quality supplies actually affected ratings negatively - I tested that and found it to be true.  I was consistently getting 5-star ratings in a test game, bought the perk and upped the quality, continued doing the exact same things, and ratings never went above 4.  Even setting it back to standard quality didn't work - so there seems to be an issue with that perk.  In the real game, I just didn't buy it.
  • In order to make sure patients didn't wait too long, since I used the Vet Rush, I disallowed more clients whenever 2 were already waiting, and then allowed more when both of the those were being examined.  I wanted enough clients to keep my 2 vets full-time busy, but I also wanted them all to think the wait-times were great

That's all I have time for now - if I did anything on the restaurant or retail store that someone else hasn't shared by the time I get home from work, I'll post again later.

Congrats to @Rinkils and @LenaLJ for great scores on this one!



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Offline HelenP

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Re: Mid-Season Major: Self-Employed Expert
« Reply #77 on: June 18, 2018, 09:07:53 AM »
So my strategy went like this:

Both sims had loves outdoors, bookworm and cheerful traits. Their starting aspiration was one of the knowledge ones for the boost to skills. Their home lot was one of the smallest lots in the north of Newcrest and the lot traits were peace and quiet and private dwelling. 

Both sims joined Good Timers club to get 'Rally the Troops'.  Then one of them created their own club with friendly socials and reading as activities and just the 2 of them as members, this club was running all the time.  1st perk was focused vibe.  They bought a picnic table, 2 cheap computers and the cheapest aquarium.

They farmed satisfaction points by doing the first parts of Good Vamp and Master Vamp.  Then the 1st one to vamp lore level 4 made money by buying guppies from the aquarium, converting to plasma packs and selling. Because this way of making money happens with the game paused, by 10.40 on the 1st Sunday morning they had both completed Fab Wealthy and had over 200,000 in the bank.  They spent some satisfaction points on antiseptic and the confident vibe club perk was purchased.

The shop (called Back of Lorry Sale) was bought, filled with expensive items plus the 2 computers and the 2 copies of vamp lore book 1 they had bought earlier. They never shut the shop, just rallied troops and drank instant fun potions.  By the early hours of Tuesday morning they had both large perks and enough money to go back home and make a totally ridiculous house full of expensive columns and trees that completed Mansion Baron.  They  bulldozed the house as soon as Mansion Baron was done and used the money to buy the restaurant and vet clinic.

The restaurant (called Alfresco Fiasco) had 2 chef stations, 2 waiter stations, the long tables from Jungle Adventures, the best chairs, expensive pictures and about 5 knight statues.  It was opened, the staff were sent for training and immediately closed again.

The vet clinic (Your Pet, Our Profit) had a very specific layout on the other smallest lot in northern Newcrest.  There was a waiting room with the podium were patients sign in, the best love seat, and a Knight statue.  The door was locked to pets.  The working area was outside with 2 treatment tables, 2 surgery stations and a crafting table.  The cost was set to 75% and quality of treatments up to highest as soon as enough perk point were available.  I also bought patient clients and lower stress pets perks as points became available.

The clinic was opened and 2 patients were allowed to arrive then it was set to Disallow new patients.  The Sims were left in the waiting room until they had noticed how beautifully decorated it was then greeted with either Greet Patient or Greet Patient Warmly.  Because the pets were never allowed in the waiting room sickness never affected the environment score, and because patients were disallowed until I was ready for them they always got the quick service score. They were on 4 stars when they got to the treatment table.

Pets were then calmed if needed and immediately sent to the surgery station.  Scans were run to get the diagnosis and then back to the treatment table to calm them again if needed and treat.  Using the surgery station got a value for money score which tended not to happen if I only used the treatment table.  While they were doing the last scan I would set the podium thing to Allow New Patients again so they would have time to notice the surroundings while I was finishing up the current ones, then disallow when 2 new patients had arrived.  I shut the clinic when I had gained a star rating to run the restaurant for a bit and kept swapping between them.

Unlike GlazeyLady, I didn't notice any negatives having high quality supplies, and early on when the star rating was lower I got some 'high quality' scores.

I don't think I did anything particularly special with the restaurant, so I not going to write in detail about it.  I got lucky with a critic in my practice but they never turned up in the scoring file.

Offline JocyMc

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Re: Mid-Season Major: Self-Employed Expert
« Reply #78 on: June 18, 2018, 09:25:46 AM »
Well, I participated but couldn't get my pet clinic past 4.5 stars.  Could I be added as DNF also?

Offline Metropolis Man

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Re: Mid-Season Major: Self-Employed Expert
« Reply #79 on: June 18, 2018, 09:27:10 AM »
Well, I participated but couldn't get my pet clinic past 4.5 stars.  Could I be added as DNF also?

Oh, boy...now I need to redo the World Ranking. I just posted it. Lol....no worries. Thank you for participating.

Offline BallerinaHippo

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Re: Mid-Season Major: Self-Employed Expert
« Reply #80 on: June 18, 2018, 09:29:18 AM »
This one surprised me.  It was much harder than I thought, and I guess I should be happy I finished even if I was last place.  My biggest problem was the restaurant, not the vet clinic.

For the clinic, I must have found the same post on another forum that GlazeyLady found because most of what I did with the vet clinic was the same.  Except I never hired any extra vets (just my two Sims) and I didn't do the vet rush.  I always got plenty of customers and would disallow new patients as soon as I had two.  The key for me on the vet clinic seemed to be to wait a little bit to greet the patient.   The owner needed to have time to notice your awesome decor.  Then treat the patient, constantly making sure that the pet wasn't stressed.  Then, after treatment ALWAYS cancel the "bill owner" interaction so you can "call a good pet."  That was often the thing that flipped the rating from 4 to 5 stars.

My problem with the restaurant was diners who would never leave.  I would get 5 stars easy, then they would just sit there.  Then, as they sat there, the rating would slowly go down, down, down.  Most of the time I had to close the restaurant because my staff had been working too long and I never got any ratings at all.  I probably had about 1 out of 10 customers who would actually pay and leave.  The summary sheet didn't even tell me what I needed to do.  It just had question marks because I didn't have enough ratings.   If anyone has any advice for how to make customers leave, I would love to hear it! 

Offline SueDenim

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Re: Mid-Season Major: Self-Employed Expert
« Reply #81 on: June 18, 2018, 10:22:22 AM »
I bought the clinic & restaurant very first thing, hired my staff, sent them for training, and then went to run the store.  While I was getting the store points, I'd stop every day, and go to both places, praise them, give them promotions (if needed), and send them back out for training, and go to run the store.

For the restaurant, that worked.  By the time I actually opened for real, the waiter & host were had lvl 6 skills (and had been promoted twice).  There was a tiny glitch with the original chef (wouldn't come to work, wouldn't get fired, had an unfortunate "accident" with a swimming pool on the store lot), but the replacement chef also was fairly decently skilled.  I'm not sure what happened with the vet clinic - the vet was there until we actually opened at which time she apparently quit.  Didn't bother to hire a third vet.  Did make that person join the "vet club" whose activities were cleaning and repairing things - so she was on the lot cleaning up anyway.  For free.  And didn't complain after 8 hours.  Ha.

My sims both had "love the outdoors" and all three spaces were open air venues.

Because the workers can only go for 8ish hours at a time but you can push your sims further, my plan was to go run the restaurant for 8 hours, then go run the clinic for 8 hours, then sleep.  This mostly worked in the test runs.  In the real (because I didn't have anyone "working" in the vet clinic), it was a longer time in the clinic.  Once the restaurant hit 5 stars, they went to the clinic & never left.  (they had small studios in the back of the restaurant & clinic.  They just had a tent on site at the store).

With the vet clinic, I think you need a fully furnished clinic - I don't think you can get 5s without a surgery station & the vending machine (even if you never use the former and the latter is empty).  My frustration was that once I got close to 50 visits (which I think is the minimum you need), I started getting three "5s" in a row, then a 4.  Then two 5s, then a 4 - even though I was doing the exact same thing I had been doing all along.  It kept me at 4.5 stars for a very long time.

This was the first time I'd every played with either the restaurants or the clinic.  I like the restaurants.  I think I'd like the clinic if I weren't pushing for 5s.  I'd also like to try it one time with clinic workers to see how that goes.



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Offline Tynynounours

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Re: Mid-Season Major: Self-Employed Expert
« Reply #82 on: June 18, 2018, 10:27:55 AM »
I did much of the same, picked the cheapest land plot in newcrest, started a club and joined the goodtimers, used soulemate on the first sunday and some part of friends of the worlds to get satisfation points, then bought connections.
Taking/quitting most jobs allowed me to get a lot of money, and a lot of pricey items I then sold in the second cheapest lot that was my "shop", and some decorations were kepts for the restaurant.

Once I had enough money, I bought another lot for the restaurant, tried to put the 5 or 6 tables around the chief station, so waiter wouldn't have too much walk, and put the entairtainer carreer rug everywhere. Then one sim would be crafting vet treats when the other was going around the tables and greeting customers or encouraging staff. I also put level 2/3 meals, and sent the staff to formations as often as I could. When the shift ended, I went back to work on the retail shop. When the restaurant was 5 stars, I bought the clinic.

I had a hard time figuring out  the wait for decorated moodlet when the clinic was paved with entertainement rugs, decorated with knights and paintings; but once I understood, it was fine. As owners were looking around, I would greet warmly their pets, then great them warmly when they had the decoration icon in their bubble. Stopping between each arrival was great too, and I want to thank Playalot's post that helped me figuring that one, and obviously, say top the patients they were great pets. I bought the patient patron and stress less pets rewards.

Offline Rinkils

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Re: Mid-Season Major: Self-Employed Expert
« Reply #83 on: June 18, 2018, 12:44:39 PM »
Reading through the strategies, I did many things similar to @GlazeyLady and @HelenP, and some I did differently.

I apologize for the lengthy post; I miss some words in English, so I sometimes have to go around and use a longer explanation.

2 key points in the overall strategy:
- have Sims up and running as much as possible = no sleeping, no eating, etc
- with the restaurant and clinic, ideally all ratings need to be 5 star right from the beginning

Now, onto chronology.

Sims: both cheerful, loves the outdoor and family-oriented, and I made them spouses in hopes it would give them additional buff from being around a family member. Bonus trait was quick learner from knowledge aspiration.


Retail / restaurant stage

I bought the Pebblestone Burrow as their residential lot and as soon as I was in a game, I paused and switched both to Fabulously Wealthy aspiration to get some points from owning cash. Next thing, Maura bought a restaurant (a small lot in Newcrest) and both Sims got another couple of points from as if earning the money that was transferred to the business. Lot traits: convivial, homey, chef`s kitchen. Bought just the most basic equipment necessary to complete the lot (sink and toilet on a green grass, just like that), made some basic menu, and hired all the staff. Travelled back to the home lot, opened the restaurant from there, travelled back with both Sims. Some patrons were already seated, and I disallowed new customers immediately. I sent Renee to socialize with guests, and Maura to give each employee a training, and to praise and socialize with the waiter and the host, until they appeared in her relationship panel. Then I closed without serving customers, not caring about those 3-star ratings I would inevitably get, and payed attention to catch the chef before she left, socialized with her a bit, too. I didn`t even try to run the restaurant with low-skilled staff; in my testing, it would hurt the ratings more than not serving.

Next thing, I bought a retail store on the adjacent lot. Lot traits: convivial, homey. It was called Garage Sale and that is what it looked like - goods just laying on the ground randomly. For selling, I bought the Knight of the Octagon Statue, grand piano, the most expensive standing mirror, and the most expensive piece of electronics I still had money for. I also made a small fenced and gated area with a bookshelf and 3 seats. I sold all the books from the bookshelf, and bought 3x Charisma 1, which I left in the bookshelf, and 1x Gourmet Cooking 1, which I hid in my Sim`s inventory.

Then I switched both Sims to Leader of the pack aspiration, and had them both join random clubs, spend their 100 points, and then quit. This was to get rid of the first tier of the aspiration. I intended to make my own club and get RTT eventually, plus I had other intentions with the club. So Maura created the club, invited Renee and all the three restaurant employees (this was the reason I wanted her to socialize with them first, so that she could invite them). I didn`t intend to complete any of those aspirations, this was merely to get enough points for later purchases of moodlet solvers.

This was done by 10AM Sunday. Then I locked the gate to the reading area, allowed access only to club members, set the club activities to reading and started the club gathering, plus opened the store. While my Sims focused on customers, I waited for the restaurant staff to take their places and start to read, and then I stole the seat from under the chef in bb mode, to make her stand up and drop the book; I took the charisma book away and sold it, and put the gourmet cooking book in the shelf, which she then picked up.

Once everyone was seated, reading the appropriate book, I added friendly socials to club activities to rake in perk points faster. Customer algorithm was: 1-2 charisma raising friendly socials, followed by 2-3 retail socials. By 10PM, I had enough club points to buy the RTT club perk, and both Sims had completed the second tier of LOTP aspiration (upon which I switched back to FW). By midnight, I switched the books the staff were reading (again using some hand of the watcher tricks to get everyone reading what they should; Comedy 1 for the host, Fitness 1 for the waiter, and GC 2 for the chef). I closed the retail at 10AM Monday, RTTed twice to make sure my employees were fresh for the first proper shift in the restaurant, then ended the gathering.

Set the statue, the mirror and the piano to not for sale, put them in my inventory, and travelled to the restaurant lot to finish it off. All it ended up being was just a small bathroom and a small kitchen, with an open air fenced area for dining, with the cheapest tables, really drab (to save money and make use of my Sims` traits), but it had the statue standing in the middle. Nothing else specific. I always used the trick of opening the restaurant from another lot. As soon as I arrived, I had one Sim run the floor, and the other one hire the pianist, and then skill up on charisma at the mirror. The managing Sim would always praise, promote, and pay for training with the chef first, so that I could upgrade the menu immediately (always had just 3 most expensive dishes of the corresponding level in each category), then welcome guests, praise + promote + pay for training the host and the waiter, cater to guests some more. My employees` skills went up really quickly. In my testing it seemed that the additional informal training I provided on the retail lot stacked with the formal one.

The Monday shift in the restaurant was really glitchy though. One thing, my waiter felt like it was highly professional to go jogging in the middle of the shift. Couldn`t get him back, unless I travelled away, and then returned. So I locked the gate to prevent him from doing it again, and just kept an eye on leaving/arriving guests. Simultaneously, about half of the guests never got served - the waiter would bring the food, but it did not appear on the table, so they couldn`t eat; I could not prioritize their food, because the game thought they had already got it, neither could I do anything else apart from checking on, so they ended up leaving with 1 star. Plus, Gheeta Rasoya must have a theme, because she chose to die in my restaurant, too (moodlet solver solution, and back to work). I closed at 10PM, and then opened the retail again. Fortunately, the latter glitch never came back.

I continued the same until Thursday - restaurant opening hours were 10AM-10PM, in between, I worked on the retail, plus skilled my employees. I ran the club nonstop. Later, I had chef mixing drinks, which I sold, and the waiter exercise (again, a lot of micromanaging and pausing to get everyone do the correct thing, but it worked).
My restaurant employees were almost maxed and fully promoted on Wednesday. Since then, I had only level 4 dishes on the menu, and had the chef on quick cooking. Bought the restaurant rush and Platinum advertisement, and got lucky to get 2 critics.

On Wednesday, while in the restaurant, I replaced homey lot trait with science lair, bought the vet lab table (forgot what is it called like), bought strongest happy vibe and vet skill boost, and had Maura make calming agents (a few for the exam table, a lot for the surgery station), later Renee.

I fulfilled the retail criteria on Thursday around noon, and the restaurant rating was maxed on Thursday late afternoon (some 50+ reviews). I wanted to knock down these two first, because the restaurant was the only business where I actually needed employees, so it could not be opened nonstop, and the retail is kind of flexible.

Vet clinic stage

I put the statue in my inventory and bought the vet clinic. I wanted to 5-star within one shift, and that I managed on Saturday morning (the clinic was open for 38 hours). This was to prevent losing time from interrupting the flow of patients. For the same reason, I didn`t bother with employees, just had my 2 Sims treating nonstop, so that I didn`t have to close.

Five important points to get 5 stars from the very beginning:
1. Ambiance - the hardest one to get right. Specific layout - I, too, locked the pets out of the waiting room, and gave them their own, which was accessible only through pet doors. The waiting room itself had the cheapest linoleum, etc, but the most comfortable chairs and the Knight of the Octagon Table statue. Once a patient came and spent some time in the waiting room, I waited for them to form the first impression, and only then I went to greet them. I didn`t have the vacuum cleaners because, just like vets, they proved to be inefficient in cleaning. Instead, I ran my club constantly, and added cleaning as the sole activity when the exam room got messy (and switched to watching TV when I wanted the club members out of the way).
2. Waiting times - allowing / disallowing patients method - I came up with the same formula as others: 2 patients being treated, 2 in the waiting room, soaking impressions. I did have vet rush, just to be able to cover some gaps in my attention, when I remembered too late to allow new patients.
3. Being great with pets - I found out that calling a good pet after treatment was not necessary if you could use Greet warmly instead of just Greet; by the time I opened the vet clinic, my Sims had high enough charisma for that. Stress levels - until I had enough perk points to buy Reduced pet stress perk, I always applied a calming agent first; after that, I did so only when the pet was visibly stressed.
4. Prices - markup 85% proved enough to impress. I did have the quality of supply set to maximum, no problems there.
5. Treating - I treated only with a vet skill level 5 and higher, and on a surgical station by default (had 2 of them, when one broke, I just replaced it). When I opened, Maura was already lvl 5 from making agents, so she was the only one treating, while Renee was making calming agents until she was lvl 5, too. They both maxed the vet skill by the end of the shift. After greeting a patient, I cancelled the automatic interaction to go to the exam table, and directed them to the surgery station instead. Calming the pet takes an immediate effect there, if you have the agent, and diagnosing is much quicker; applying surgeries seems to be slower than treating on the exam table, but for that, I would have to transfer to the exam table, and still lose time that way; so I kept everything to the surgery station.

If I did all of the above, I would always get 5 stars. If I lost concentration and messed up, I would get less. I needed about 60 reviews, almost all of them 5 star, to max out the rating.

I actually completed the criteria about an hour sooner than the time I stated, but I wanted to finish treating the patients I still had in the clinic. I also finally hired a vet, left the clinic open, went to open the retail, and opened the restaurant from there as well, so that technically, I had all the 3 business open at the moment I officially finished.

Congrats and hats off to all participants.  :)

Offline MomOfMany

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Re: Mid-Season Major: Self-Employed Expert
« Reply #84 on: June 26, 2018, 11:45:00 AM »
I practiced for this one and even started it. However I got the vet issue seems many had and gave up. I forgot to come here to post my DNF. Ops! Oh well. But I just wanted to say I liked this challenge aside from the vet difficulty so for me it wasn't an issue that it was too hard it was more that the vet seemed impossible. I had looked up vet clinic and read a ton on it but I didn't see whatever post the others had seen or maybe that would have helped me. Also I misread the rules and only used 1 Sim. I don't know how I missed that one or if that would have even made a difference.

Offline IronicBeauty

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Re: Mid-Season Major: Self-Employed Expert
« Reply #85 on: June 28, 2018, 08:28:59 AM »
Wow, that was awesome @Rinkils! Also, thank you @Metropolis Man for adding me to the raking though I didn't finish.

I attempted a few of the ideas mentioned above from searching online but when it comes to execution I find I just haven't developed my micromanaging skills sufficiently enough. Congrats to those that have the ability, it was quite the challenge!

Offline Rinkils

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Re: Mid-Season Major: Self-Employed Expert
« Reply #86 on: June 28, 2018, 11:19:27 AM »
Thank you, @IronicBeauty. :) Yeah, it was fun, too. Lots of things to learn.

 

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