Author Topic: Sims 3 Challenge Hall of Fame  (Read 50764 times)

Online Metropolis Man

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Sims 3 Challenge Hall of Fame
« on: March 15, 2010, 04:43:18 PM »
Sims 3 Challenge Hall of Fame

2010 Tournament

The Perfectly Happy Challenge, March 14
Participants: 29
Champion: ik

The 2010 Tournament officially kicked off with this long 100-day event involving a single Sim trying to catch all perfect fish, cook all perfect meals, and plant all perfect fruits and vegetables. Additionally, the Sim needed to acquire as many happiness points as possible. 29 players from all over the world participated in the event, which shattered the previous participation number for a forum challenge.

When all was said and done, ik, a 40-year-old mother of two little girls, topped the large field. It was touch and go initially for this native of Germany. Her Sim got buggy and was unable to use bait when fishing during Week 8. She went back to a previous save and all was good. She explained, “I did not expect to come out first with all the trouble I had with fishing. I did not even do anything special, I just went through the guide concerning traits, chose the ones that seemed most suitable for getting many lth points, and then went with what came my way.”

ik continued to tell me a little more about her character: “As for strategy, I have not really had any for the Perfectly Happy Challenge. I decided to not choose any skill related traits (no natural cook, angler or green thumb) since I had been playing enough gardening and fishing Sims before to be sure to get the perfects without those traits, and suspected that the same would go for cooking, especially with perfect ingredients. Instead, I chose by checking Carl's guide, and came up with an Over-Emotional, Ambitious, Perfectionist, Bookworm and Lucky Sim (Lucky was really just because I did not know what to choose as last trait ;) ).”

ik was only one of three players to approach 500k happiness points. Ambitious was obviously a key trait for anyone’s character in this event. But, Bookworm and Perfectionist were important traits for ik’s character as well. “Bookworm was helpful early on to get a quick start on the gardening and cooking skill. It also gave a lot of 'read xx books' wishes, and towards the end, gave an almost guaranteed wish to finish a book just by going to the library anytime I did not have anything to do and an open wish slot. Perfectionist also came up with a lot of 'catch perfect xx', 'grow perfect xx' and 'prepare perfect xx' wishes that I did not expect, but were very helpful ;D . 'Prepare 25 different perfect meals' was a nice big wish over the last few weeks, too.”

Zeus and Hera’s Nectar-Making Invitational, April 4
Participants: 25
Champion: ik

Next up on the 2010 Tournament schedule was Zeus and Hera’s Nectar-Making Invitational. This was another long 100-day event quite different from Perfectly Happy. Players had to be single-minded in their pursuit of acquiring a huge stockpile of nectar and then selling it at the last minute to make as much money as possible. The official “hosts” of the event were Zeus and Hera Olympus. It was great to see many of the 25 players play along with the theme and create other Greek gods/goddesses.

Zeus and Hera had a short 2-week reign at the top of the leader board with $6,618,092 simoleans from nectar sold. meamalso2 threw down the gauntlet and said before starting, “I will buckle down and try to beat Metro at his own game.” Turns out those words were prophetic and meamlaso2 posted an incredible $8,018,330 nectar total, pushing Zeus and Hera down to 2nd. Then, fresh off of her victory from Perfectly Happy, ik posted her results of $8,733,633 and never relinquished the throne for the duration of the challenge.  

ik (Imme) explained, “My basic strategy was to get enough LTH points for the traveler rewards quickly. I made it by day 6 (week 1) and went to France for 9 days. I got home with 8 nectar-making machines, all three nectar skill books, several bottles of lime-renoit and apple-renoit nectars (I had taken a good many apples and limes with me, and harvested renoit grapes and pomegranates whenever possible) and several skill levels in nectar making for each Sim.”

She continued, “I used the first few weeks for growing Life Fruit and tons of other special seeds, to max the gardening and nectar making skills of both Sims and get all nectar makers upgraded. I also tried to force the relevant gardening and nectar making skill challenges for both Sims, especially the 200 bottles and 40 bins of fruit challenges, which I fulfilled mostly by making apple-renoit and lime-renoit nectar since those fruits grow quickly. I replanted all of the early Life Fruit harvests to get lots of perfect fruit quickly. I made my first Life Fruit/Pomegranate nectar in late Week 5/early Week 6, and made the first Perfect one in late Week 6/early Week 7 (with all nectar challenges in place). In the end I got most of my total from Life Fruit Pomegranate nectar (about 8.3 million from close to 4k bottles).”

ik finished up by telling me, “Traits I used were Bookworm (to learn gardening, handiness and nectar-making quickly), Loves the Outdoors, Green Thumb, Ambitious (to get the LTH points for the traveler rewards quickly) and Over-Emotional (for better mood). Rewards bought were the traveler rewards, Super Green Thumb and everything related to needs. Lifetime Wishes were Perfect Garden and Bottomless Nectar Cellar.”

So, ik put it all together for another great win. Well done, Imme!

Sunset Valley/Riverview Team Upgrade Race, April 25
Participants: 36
Champion: omega2alpha

A whopping 36 players participated in leg #3 of the 2010 Tournament, the Sunset Valley/Riverview Team Upgrade Race. In this event, players formed a team of 3 Sims and raced around both Sunset Valley and Riverview to Upgrade all objects in public facilities as fast as possible. It was a lot of fun and very quick.

omega2alpha, a 16-year-old US resident, edged out lovergirl by one hour for the win. Despite the winner’s young age, omega2alpha has been playing Sims for a long time: “I've been playing since the Sims first came out (I was six and playing a teen rated game ;D). My brother got it for his birthday and I've been hooked ever since.”

I was very eager to get some strategy from the champ. I got plenty: “Red, Green, and Blue Upgrade (their name corresponds with their skin color) had the traits of Handy, Over-Emotional, Loves the Outdoors, Ambitious, and Loner. I used the list of places with number of upgrades on the rules, and  assigned each Sim venues based on how many upgradeable objects there were in each place (the Sims split up and were never at the same place at the same time). When someone completed an upgrade, I put a tally mark next to the place name on the list. When they were done at a venue, I had them pack up and go to the next one on their list. This way, I stayed organized and was able to keep each Sim constantly busy with minimal transportation time.”

“Immediately after Red, Green, and Blue moved into Riverview (this is my favorite neighborhood, so I started them here) I sent them to the grocery store to buy raw fruit and the bookstore to buy handiness level one books, I sent them on a vacation to China. There, they read their handiness books and upgraded a whole bunch of stuff (to get money). On the last day, they each bought a tent and 50ish shower-in-a-cans. Back in Riverview they upgraded until their needs got low, and they then slept nearby in a tent, ate a piece of fruit, or showered (with a can). All LTH points were used for rewards related to needs.”

“Sunset Valley was the same - go to a venue, plop a tent down and start upgrading. I finished quickly because by that time I had almost all the needs rewards bought so there was less downtime for when the Sims needed to sleep or eat.”

Thanks to this big win, omega2alpha had a lock on the #2 position when the World Ranking debuted on April 26th.

The Career Couples’ Grand Slam Challenge, May 16
Participants: 29
Champion: NancyJ

29 participants finished leg #4 of the 2010 Tournament, an event focusing on careers for Sims. The goal was to have 2 Sims max out 4 different careers (a “Grand Slam”) as well as complete as many different career opportunities as quickly as possible.

NancyJ, a veteran player since the Tournament began in January, topped the field and was one of the few players to finish in the 8th week. Hazel (Nancy’s real name) is a 27-year-old self-employed web developer currently residing in Bradford, UK.

Hazel adopted a smart strategy as to which careers to choose for her Sims: “Originally I'd planned to select professions based on skill overlap but in testing it became apparent that it wasn't a good strategy, the professions didn't line up well in terms of days off, plus the risk of arrest with the criminal career was too much. Solid Mon-Fri jobs worked out better for maximizing the number of days worked. In the end for Sim 1 I chose Business to start because it has no skill requirements, then athletic, military and police. For Sim 2 I chose Cooking first for the rewards and moodlet boosts from good food, I then went into medicine, music and politics.”
“For traits I chose Ambitious, Schmoozer, Workaholic and Charismatic then Athletic for Sim 1 and Bookworm for Sim 2. Workaholic was essential for working at home to get promotions on the weekend/days off. Charismatic & Schmoozer helped quickly butter up my new bosses to get promotions.”

Lifetime Rewards I took were: Observant + Never Dull + Office Hero for quickly making friends with bosses and co-workers; Steel Bladder - no moodlet benefit from using the toilet so no need to do it; Dirt Defiant - I still showered every day but it takes much less time and the mood boost lasts > 24hrs. Most free time was spent either working from home on the computer or working on skills.”

Hazel’s overall big tip: “Most important was never being late for work, even if it meant skipping breakfast, I had to get a promotion every worked day possible - one missed promotion could throw off the whole schedule. With the Mon-Fri jobs you could generally get to level 6 or 7 in the first week of the job (including 1 promotion at the weekend) then get the remaining 3-4 promotions over the next week.”

Congratulations to Hazel for her entry into the Hall of Fame and for sharing some great tips!

Baby Boomer II: 50 Days of Extreme Parenting, June 6
Participants: 34
Champion: LenaLJ

2nd only to the Upgrade Race for sheer participation to date, the Baby Boomer II Challenge saw an impressive 34 players have their Sims make lots of babies over the past 10 weeks. In the first Baby Boomer Challenge the focus was on pure numbers of children. This time around important milestones in the children’s development were key, as well as fulfillment of Lifetime Wishes.

Lena LJ, an 18-year-old woman living in Denmark, has been a consistently strong Tournament player from the start, including a 4th place finish in the Nectar Challenge, a 6th place finish in the Upgrade Race, and 2nd place in Career Couples. She put it all together this time and scored a win. Lena shares some of her thoughts on this Challenge: “I actually didn't have much time to play this challenge because of getting my driver’s license. I was already behind in the Career Couples’ Challenge, so I only had a couple of weeks to complete this before the next big school period in my education. I’ve always loved playing challenges. In fact, I’m very competitive and challenges are nearly the only way I play Sims.”

Lena continued: “When I finally was able to play I put together a strategy. Then, I saw some of the impressive 84-point scores and they were higher than what I thought was possible. So, I revamped the last part of my strategy in hope of getting more points. The most important thing was to get those babies fast so the first 6 kids (twins, triplets and a single one) were made as fast as possible. The mother, Venus Ai, had the LTW of Surrounded by Family, and the dad, Mars Ai, got the LTW of Becoming a CEO. Mars' biggest part in this challenge was to provide the money.

“All the children worked hard on their school performances and toddler skills and if they weren’t working on that they worked on other skills that would fit to the LTW I chose for them. Mars moved out as soon as he reach the top and got enough money. So there was a place for one more baby — the original couple got 7 children. Each of the children got a LTW about skills as these are the easiest to complete.”

“When the twins became YA they had not completed their LTW yet, but their mother and some of their younger siblings had finished their LTW so I had them move out. That made space for three spouses for the 3 eldest children. The tactic with the spouses was getting Sims with Snob as one of their traits in hope of Swimming in Cash and Living in the Lap of Luxury LTW. I was lucky and one of the 3 had Swimming in Cash, the two others I accumulated enough Lifetime Happiness Points so they could change traits and LTW, 1 got Living in the Lap of Luxury, the other Heartbreaker.”

"As time was running out I moved everyone out except for 2 pair. They got twins and a single baby and there was just enough time for them to learn their skills.”

Well done, Lena! Great tips and congratulations on your Hall of Fame entry. Yeah, I can vouch for the LTW strategy at the end. I used Mid-Life Crisis/Change LTW rewards myself on some Sims to make things as easy as possible.

Political “Traiter” to the World, June 27
Participants: 26
Champion: Delgar

Political “Traiter” was a very short challenge — only 30 game days plus one vacation. The goal was multifaceted — you needed to raise a lot of money in the political career by throwing Campaign Fundraisers, learn as many traits from Sims as possible, and the real key in getting a big score was the NPC multiplier where you had to become Best Friends with an NPC as well as learn all their traits. So, scores were all over the place depending on if you had one component really high and another one not so high. tosho ended up with the most Campaign$ — 1763 which translates to $1,763,000 raised from Campaign Fundraisers. Schipperke found a staggering 613 traits which was tops for that score. And Kaori had the best NPC score, a mind boggling 4.10 which means 62 NPCs!

But, the player that ended up winning the challenge did not have the best score in any category. Jerry, aka Delgar on the forum, had high scores in all 3 categories, and most importantly, his NPC score was 2nd best overall.

This Calgary, Alberta, Canada native who recently moved to New Jersey is relatively new to the Sims franchise and started playing with Sims 3 because his wife downloaded it while waiting for her new job to begin. Needless to say, Jerry is the one who became quickly attached to the game.

Here’s some words from the champ: “First off let me say that this was by far my favorite challenge so far. It really forced me to play the game in a totally different way. Never before had I interacted with so many Sims and held so many parties. My strategy was simple, I knew I had to focus on befriending as many of the NPC's as possible. I wasn't sure at the beginning how I was going to accomplish this, but on the way I did learn a few tricks.”

“My Sim, Tex Longhorn, was Ambitious, Workaholic, Charismatic, Friendly, Schmoozer. I knew that I needed to get as far into my political career so that I could start hosting parties by the first weekend, hence the Ambitious/Workaholic. His wife was merely there as a marriage of convenience. She would further his political career by befriending and introducing him to as many NPC's as possible.”

“My first two LTR and really the only two that mattered were Observant (3 traits for free, yes please) and Never Dull (so I could spam Get to Know and learn all the traits as quickly as possible). Once my Charisma was high and many of the Charisma challenges were completed, I had to deal with the annoying fact that everyone Tex would meet would start out as friends. So, he would have to insult them once or twice to bring them back down to an acquaintance so he could fill up the queue with the Get to Know action to learn the final two traits. But I still needed to figure out how to find more NPC's.”

“Late in my game I discovered something interesting. I had Tex’s wife order a pizza, and when the pizza guy/gal arrived, asked them to hang out. Then he ordered another pizza, bringing yet another NPC to the house. In one day I was able to get 8-10 different pizza guys/gals to the house. I wasn't able to befriend them all that day, but I now had a way to access more NPC's because I could call over any of these NPC's whenever I wanted. So, I decided to try the same thing with repairman/repairwomen and lo and behold, I could do the same thing. Had I known about this trick earlier I think I could have easily improved my NPC count dramatically.”

“I'm still surprised my score held out. I can't believe I won.”

You did great, Jerry. Thanks for offering up the great tips and congratulations on your induction into the Hall of Fame.

Online Metropolis Man

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Re: Carl's Sims 3 Challenge Hall of Fame
« Reply #1 on: July 20, 2010, 10:31:47 AM »
House Hunters: Movin’ On Up! July 18
Participants: 37
Champion: TheCub

House Hunters was very unique and props to Pam for coming up with the original idea — basically your 2 Sims needed to live in as many houses as possible with the catch that each house they moved into had to be worth more than the previous one. An additional curveball in the rules was you had to play each house as is — no changes at all, and you could only only buy one object per house.

Lots of players piled into this event as House Hunters set a new participation record — 37. Forum member TheCub literally came in at the 11th hour on the final day of the challenge to post his winning score. Rob is a 45-year-old post office clerk and a native New Yorker — born and raised in the city, now living in the suburbs.

Rob is no stranger to the Sims franchise: “I'm not much of a gamer but I was hooked on The Sims when the original game was released. I played so much I ended up needing surgery for carpal tunnel syndrome! I stopped playing after that so I completely missed The Sims 2, but after reading about The Sims 3 last year I started playing again.”

Rob laid out his winning House Hunter strategy — “I knew that earning money would be the key to this challenge. Vacant houses won't do me any good if I can't afford to buy them, so I had to focus on earning a lot of money as quickly as possible. For Scott's traits I went with my usual challenge trio of Ambitious, Workaholic and Schmoozer. He reached level 10 of the Business career in less than two weeks and spent the rest of the time holding meetings all day. Wanda was an Angler who Loved the Outdoors. She quickly maxed out the Fishing skill, then after that she went to the graveyard every night to catch Deathfish.”

“I tried to maximize the value of each house before moving out. I waited until I was about to move, then I would buy something to increase the value of the old house as close as I could to the value of the new house. For one of my moves, the new house was worth only §2 more than the old one!”

“I got lucky when the Wolffs ended up moving twice. They left their Bwan Speedster at Ye Olde Tudor after their second move, so that house was now worth §85,000 more than it was earlier. I was able to move there and then I immediately moved to Lone Wolff Manor. There was nowhere else to go, unless the Altos or the Landgraabs were to move...”

“I know that families will sometimes move if they have children and there isn't enough room in their current house. In most of my previous games when Holly or Vita have a child they usually end up moving. With two weeks of game time left and no more vacant houses I had nothing else to do, so Scott got Fertility Treatment, developed a romantic relationship with Holly, and they eventually tried for a baby. The next day he invited her over and they spent the day watching the kids channel on TV. A couple of days later there was a notice that Scott was now the father of twin girls. He tried to visit them the next day but (un)fortunately they didn't live there any more.” ;D

“I would have tried the same thing with Anne Song (who was living with the Landgraabs) if I hadn't run out of time. That's what happens when I take a two month break to play an Apocalypse Challenge and come back with only a few days left.” :D

Well done, Rob. Congratulations on your induction into the Hall of Fame.

Crazy Eights Collector’s Challenge, August 8
Participants: 21
Champion: NancyJ

A smaller field than with other Tournament challenges did not lessen the enthusiasm participants had for Crazy Eights. Everyone really had a great time with this one — many players stated it was their favorite event to date.

This was a speed challenge and the goal was to complete 8 very different collections — from things like wining and dining 8 different Sims (Romantic Interests) and purchasing 8 expensive objects (Snob Collection) to more traditional collections like metals, gems, and various bugs.

When staffer TommyT posted his score of 34 days he took the lead and I remember thinking, “Wow, that’s fast...who could top that?” NancyJ did just that with a time of 30 days. Another staffer, wildredchild, posted towards the end of the event and ended up 2nd with a time of 31 days, but Nancy’s time was not to be beaten.

You can find out a little more about Hazel (Nancy’s real name) in the Career Couple’s Challenge Hall of Fame entry, so on to the good stuff and her strategy...

“My starting traits were Ambitious, Athletic, Disciplined, Flirty, Lucky. LTW: Physical Perfection. I knew I would need martial arts to get the glowy butterfly from the little island in France and the board breaker would be a much quicker way of getting gems and had the chance of getting me tiberium which helped with cash flow early on. I knew gems were going to be the hardest part - particularly pink diamonds so being able to break boards without getting fatigued was important. I took a chance that the week spent working out would pay for itself when it came to trying to get the gems.”
“I also knew that I would have to start finding bugs before I could possibly complete my Lifetime Wish. I already knew a few spots, mostly for butterflies just from playing but not enough. I got a few locations of specific bugs just by Googling. The rest came from using Carl's maps to check for spawn spots.”

“Most of the metals were easily obtainable. In China, the 'telescopic metals' quest reveals all the metals on the map and labels them by name so you can just grab the ones you're looking for. All local metals can be found in China, this is where I got most of my palladium and any plutonium I picked up was sold for a little extra cash (more on that later). In France there is the quest 'new nectar machine' which highlights all the titanium. Mummitomium can be purchased from the relic shop and found at the mine, it can also be obtained through other means.”

“Plutonium and mummitomium are linked to how I got the compendium, supernovium and the large amount of cash needed to complete the snob collection. I discovered while messing around with the XL display that plutonium and mummitomium could be created as a by-product of supernovium. Someone has since distilled this information into a neat formula based on metal value (which I suspected was a component but didn't have time to test) but here is a spreadsheet I made.”

“All the recipes create supernovium plus the additional by-product metals listed. In this way I was able to create plutonium, mummitomium, compendium and 2 spare large supernovium ingots which I combined in a compendium recipe repeatedly with my left-over metals until I ran out - in the end I had an ingot worth over 500k - I really didn't want to sell it!”

“Getting the ladies was pretty easy, Flirty sims are easy to get to romantic interest with (you can confess attraction after only a couple of interactions) but the relationship meter won't be high enough to take them on a date. The working friends are often all single and have good traits for fast relationship building, in particular, many of them are snobs so compliment flirts are well received and raise the bar fast. Asking about their careers can also lead to 'enthuse' type interactions, which I used with the Flirty sims Blair Wainwright, River McIrish and Molly French.”

“Other key points were not smelting anything until I had 5 different metal types - the metal collector challenge can give up to 4 (maybe 5) bars per ore and the beetle collector before trying to grab the glowy. Getting the skulls was partly luck, I didn't wait until I had 8 gems of each type, I waited until I had at least 5 of the gem I had the least of and crossed my fingers. I also developed some superstitions that may have no basis in fact but the gems did seem to come in waves. So if I got 3 yellows in a session (geodes, citrines and yellow sapphires) I would stop and go to the library to read or do something else for a while before trying again. No idea if that helped but my score was 2 days faster than I expected and I ended up with 7 pink diamonds so maybe it did help. Finally, I used Mid-Life Crisis to switch to Adventurous and Bookworm (from Athletic and Flirty) after I got all 8 dates.”

That’s a wealth of information, Hazel. Thanks so much for sharing and congratulations on your 2nd victory. You join the elite group of players (just you and ik) with two feathers in their hat. Can anyone get a hat trick before the Tournament is over? We’ll see! :)

The Random Wishmaster’s Quartet, August 29
Participants: 41
Champion: Metropolis Man

I think it’s safe to say this event will end up being the toughest event of the entire 2010 Tournament season. I say that for two obvious reasons: 1) the sheer amount of game time one had to play four Sims was quite long, and 2) all Sims were totally random which means things got quite chaotic at times. But, despite this event’s difficulty, there was clearly something about it that was very enticing to players—I’m happy to report that this event set a new participation record (41) for a 2010 Tournament challenge.

On to my interview with myself. :) Since I often flip-flop between Sims 3 events and Diablo II tournaments I also host, I specifically targeted the last week in July as when I was going to finish this event. All 3 of my girls stayed with my mom that week, so I could invest a huge amount of time. I had started playing the file shortly after the event began, but had not made much progress due to Diablo events and other Sims 3 events.

Here we go. The game threw me the following Sims: Adam Randomhouse (Good Sense of Humor, Unflirty, Loner, Hydrophobic, and Born Saleman, LTW: Professional Author); Claire Randomhouse (Adventurous, Athletic, Easily Impressed, Good Sense of Humor, and Inappropriate, LTW: Seasoned Traveler); Tamika Randomhouse (Ambitious, Brave, Evil, Family-Oriented, and Heavy Sleeper, LTW: Emperor of Evil); Megan Randomhouse (Artistic, Flirty, Mooch, Natural Cook, Workaholic, LTW: Celebrated 5-Star Chef).

Adam and Claire I assigned as spouses. Tamika was Adam’s sister and Megan ended up being the Romantic Interest of Tamika. I had never explored “alternative” relationships before, so that was interesting, to say the least. But, I’ve never hid the fact that I’m a firm believer in the power of Woo Hoo to raise multiple needs quickly. And for the purposes of this event and happiness points — wow! When you’re talking about 100 home days and 100 vacation days, that’s a lot of points from Woo Hoo.

I really don’t have much to say about the first few weeks of play simply because all four Sims were going in different directions to knock out their respective Lifetime Wishes. But, once all of them finished their LTW, I completely changed gears to bring the chaos under my control. They became a unified pack and worked as a team on accomplishing key high-point things: Athletic, Sculpting, Painting, Charisma, winning the Martial Arts Tournament, Cooking, Gardening, Nectar-Making, and writing Children’s Books. Oh, and maxing the Ghost Hunter career because there are some huge wishes for donating ghosts to the Science Center. There are some truly enormous wishes in the game and that’s what I focused on... “Read 50 Books,” “Write 50 Books,” “Win a Martial Arts Tournament,” “Have More Than 1000000 Simoleans,” “Workout for 12 Straight Hours,” “Have 25 Friends,” “Learn all Recipes.”

Another tip I’m sure many experienced players did was to continually buy and quickly delete objects as a result of a wish. I have no idea how many trampolines and Gnubb sets I bought (and washers and dryers for that matter), but every single day, one or two Sims would fire those wishes. Buy the item, and’s gone again. If I had kept the items, then the wishes would never keep coming for the same item! An exploit for sure, but I still had to plunk out the change for the items and take a loss when I sold them.

Within 4 or 5 weeks I had nearly every important time-saving LTR that I wanted since the LTW were completed — Steel Bladder, Hardly Hungry and Dirt Defiant were big ones so I could work the Sims harder and longer. Meditative Trance Sleep is another biggie. Targeted LTR like Super Creative, Acclaimed Author, or Artisan Crafter were picked up when necessary when the pack was working on something specific like Painting, writing Children’s Books, or Sculpting.

So, that’s honestly about it. I guess the only other thing I want to mention is the importance of knowing when to stop and move on. That was key with this event. I probably did not have my Sims max as many careers/skills as other players, but what may have accounted for some of my score is simply the knowledge of when to stop the pack and move on. You have to know when the wishes dry up for a skill/career because if you don’t then you’re spinning your wheels when you could be knee deep in the next thing earning more happiness points.

This was a ridiculous amount of work. Part of me says I’ll never run this long of a challenge again, but another part of me says, “Hey, look how many players posted results.” It was an incredible feeling of accomplishment to even finish.

Following Romantic Interests to the Letter, September 19
Participants: 22
Champion: Schipperke

After the grueling ordeal of Wishmasters, I wanted to throw something a lot simpler and more manageable at players — a short event where the goal is for one Sim to obtain as many Romantic Interests as possible. Traveling to all three World Adventures' locations was involved and a big part of the difficulty in the event was each succeeding Romantic Interest had to follow the previous one alphabetically. Lots of homework!

Yay, I won!  I won!  I really won!  About bloody time, too...I won!

When, I read this portion of Schipperke's PM, I laughed. I was very happy Schipperke ended up winning. She's a wonderful, kind and helpful forum member and her time in the spotlight was definitely overdue. After reading the personal portions of her PM to me I was even happier that she bagged a win: "My name is Dianne and I live in Saskatchewan. I am a retired psychologist. In 2006 I was diagnosed with ovarian cancer, and needed an interesting but sedentary activity to occupy the months of chemotherapy—that’s how I got into Sims.  The cancer is now in remission, but the Simming habit remains, especially during our long cold Saskatchewan winters. I discovered this Sims 3 forum shortly after I got high-speed internet in December, and it has become my favourite place on the Web. I love the Challenges, even though I never win—until now! My family is 4 schipperkes, two of them being rescues."

"My character in this challenge, Peregrine Pickle, had the following traits: Charismatic, Flirty, Hopeless Romantic, Adventurous, and Kleptomaniac. The first 3 traits are obvious and were intended to further his goal of getting those romantic interests in a hurry. I’m not sure Flirty was necessary, as he never actually did any flirting. Adventurous was so he could travel more frequently. Kleptomaniac was so he could support himself and pay for his travelling without having to be gainfully employed. I have to admit, I also liked the idea of him stealing hearts by day and cars by night—there’s a symmetry there that appealed to me. Money was never an issue. When travelling, he would get rich Sims to invite him to stay the night, then when they were asleep, he’d sneak downstairs and steal their stuff. His criminal activities financed his trips quite nicely. Salvaging at the junk yard also payed well."

"I spent the first part of the game getting his Charisma skill up and having him meet everyone in Sunset Valley. He didn’t travel until about the middle of the second week, when he could just go door-to-door meeting people and he was instant best friends with them. Once he had met everyone he could find at home and at the 3 travel destinations, I made a list, alphabetical and colour-coded by location, and then worked out how to get as many romantic interests as possible. Getting to Romantic Interest was quite easy too. All he had to do was get to Good Friends or better relationship, Confess Attraction, and they were his. The only Sim this didn’t work on was Buster Clavell, and I have no idea why he was immune to Peregrine’s charms. Most of his romantic interests weren’t made until the last week of game time. I used a combination of quick trips, inviting foreign visitors, and parties to get everyone on the list."

"What was hard in this Challenge was figuring out the best way to use the time. I wound up with 3 or 4 unused vacation days. There was also an unused home day—he finished up the list the day before the Challenge finished, but I didn’t count his relationships until the time was over. I did make some stupid mistakes early in the game, before I really had my strategy worked out—like going to the Langeraks before the Keatons, so it should have been possible to get a higher number than I did."

Dianne amassed a phenomenal 116 Romantic Interests when it was all said and done. Great job, Dianne! And thanks for the insight on your approach. Enjoy your well-earned place in the Hall of Fame.

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Online Metropolis Man

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Re: Carl's Sims 3 Challenge Hall of Fame
« Reply #2 on: October 12, 2010, 09:20:08 AM »
The da Vinci’s All You Can Make Buffet, October 10
Participants: 30
Champion: Largo The Stampede

The da Vinci Challenge was a pure money-making endeavor involving two Sims—one was restricted to making money from only Cooking, the Culinary career, and Cooking/Culinary career opportunities; the other Sim was restricted to making money from only the da Vinci skills and their related opportunities—painting, sculpting, and inventing.

30 players jumped in for the da Vinci Challenge and Cameron (Largo The Stampede), a 27-year-old Woodland, CA resident, posted a huge score and was never topped. Cameron literally just got into the game about 4 months ago via his wife, another forum Tournament player, ClayMask. Cameron told me, “I had just finished up my last deployment of my 6 years in the Navy. The game took a little getting use to because I have never played these type of games before. She was working on this challenge, so I saw how her strategy worked and learned from her. I am a fairly competitive person and I really wanted to get ranked so I figured I would have to jump right in and try to knock out a few challenges. For the most part our strategies for this challenge were the same except I learned from her actual run through and could fix little things here and there.”

“My two Sims were Artistic DaVinci (Hates the Outdoors, Savvy Sculptor, Eccentric, Artistic, Brave) and Chef DaVinci (Born Saleswoman, Workaholic, Natural Cook, Green Thumb, Ambitious).”

“I started off having Artistic do sculpting since sculptures have the fastest rate of appreciation. Constant sculpting until midnight or so when he went to bed with Chef so she could get stuff done around her culinary career schedule. Mostly he stayed on that schedule so that they could woohoo before she went to work. He got the master sculptor challenge done by doing 5 each type of sculpture first. That way the more expensive sculptures would be worth more and expand the margin of profit. With Chef I spent as much time trying to get promotions and raises as possible. She leveled her cooking as quick as she could by reading in the library. Working at home "at the library" and asking for promotions whenever I couldn't achieve them at work was the way to go. It got to be that she could only ask for raises every 5 days or so. Her pay ended up being $1,431/hr when I finished the challenge. Once Artistic finished the master sculptor challenge  I just had him doing the topiary statues. I stuck with the first one that he created which was the penguins. Artistic made it to level 5 sculpting career by selling the 5 ice sculptures made for the master sculptor skill challenge before he had to switch to painting.”

“Painting was really boring. All he did was paint small canvases non stop except for sleep and eating. It goes without saying that during all of this the da Vincis picked up the happiness rewards most closely related to their jobs. Artistic picked up Artisan Crafter and No Bills Ever and then started going for the needs type rewards to lengthen the amount of time that he could spend on his art. Chef picked up mostly needs related things and Suave Seller + all of the normal rabbit-hole job rewards like Entrepreneurial Mindset, Office Hero, Multi-Tasker, and such.”

“I received a few opportunities with Artistic. He was lucky that the sculpting opportunities actually paid him for his work. I think he only got 1 painting opportunity during his painting phase. Chef used a lot of her free time learning different skills in the library. She mastered inventing at the library for happiness points and spent a lot of time in the junkyard digging for scrap. She also gardened and fished so that she could make Ambrosia which became the main source of their diet. Before too long they had their own teleporter  and food replicator.”

“Once Artistic switched to inventing it got much easier. He started off with about 5k scrap because of the extra work that Chef was doing. Artistic registered as a self employed inventor and invented indefinitely until he learned how to make floor hygienators. Then he made them constantly until he made 100 big inventions and became a master inventor. During this time he switched to sleeping between 7pm and midnight. Inventions depreciate daily so I wanted to make as few inventions as necessary between 5pm and midnight. That is the time that he would eat, shower and woohoo. Once he became a master inventor he invented until he learned to make the flying fighters and he cranked out roughly a million of those! On average I would sell 74 flying fighters to the consignment shop daily. Every day I went to the consignment shop. Every night I would leave a Time Machine on the workbench and see if one of the many many many gnomes of invention would finish it for me, which for the most part they would.”

“Every time that Artistic would reach level 10 inventing career he would quit the career and reapply for it. That would take Artistic back to level 5 and allow him to get the bonus money through leveling up again. 4 days before the end of my challenge I took all of the sculptures and paintings from home and sold them to the consignment shop. At that point I had roughly 500k in cash. The first days sales were 1,450,000 or so and I just kept on inventing. The last day was a Saturday and I kept Chef from going to work that day so she could consign things at the last minute. 4:52 PM was when she posted. At 5:10 PM I cancelled all of the things that didn't sell and sold all of them directly. Artistic continued making flying fighters until he just about passed out at 11:11PM and I sold all of the remaining inventions.”

“That’s it. Basically, I stuck to making the items that were the largest amount of money per hour and started with the highest appreciation items so they would accrue value the most. I had a lot of fun participating in this challenge and I look forward to more exciting challenges.”

Great job, Cameron. Thank you for the tips and congratulations on your induction into the Hall of Fame.

The Grim Reaper’s Skill Challenge of Sorrow, October 31
Participants: 39
Champion: Largo The Stampede

A very large field (2nd largest ever) dove into this really unusual event where players started with 3 Elders and essentially skilled them until Grim arrived. The intersting thing with this event was the Keep Needs Static cheat was available to players, so there was no need for their Sims to eat, pee, or sleep.

When it was all over, Largo The Stampede racked up another win. You can check out his brief bio info in the last HOF entry. He was kind enough to go into great detail on what he did this time around. It’s a little long for a HOF entry, but it’s easier for me to just let him do the talking. So, enjoy...

“I started off with my 3 elders:

"Chef Elder" - Artistic, Charismatic, Natural Cook, Genius, Virtuoso. Lived to be 102 days old.
"Art Elder" - Artistic, Photographer's Eye, Handy, Eccentric, Born Saleswoman. Lived to be 102 days old.
"Jackie Elder" - Disciplined, Angler, Green Thumb, Over-Emotional, Neurotic. Lived to be 94 days old.”

“All of these traits were chosen primarily so that I could balance out the skills that they were going to work on through their lives. My wife, "Claymask", did a lot of testing while I was working on the last challenge to see how long each skill would take in hours and which skill challenges would be reasonable to work on. Since she finished this challenge before I could start it I was able to bounce ideas off her and figure out which of my ideas wouldn't work at all and which ones were good. In the end I basically came up with the best possible combination in my opinion which ended up being identical to the plan that she had used. Each set of skills that they were going to complete had a level of synergy to them.”

Chef had:
  • Charismatic - So she could work on gaining the charisma skill early on and make lots of friends. It allowed her to tell jokes over and over without making people bored and choose the most efficient options when talking to people. She used her contacts in order to call up people that she learned were Natural Cooks and people that she was going to tutor later on for her logic skill.
  • Natural Cook - Obviously so she could learn the cooking skill quickly. She only made Autumn Salads because they are so quick to make and I wanted her to make a lot of them for the skill challenges.
  • Artistic - So she could power through the guitar skill quickly, which she worked on when there was nobody available to talk to or during the hours that Autumn Salads are not available to make, and so that she could work on the writing skill later on.
  • Virtuoso - Was also for the guitar skill because I really wanted her to complete the money maker challenge and it would help boost her tip income.
  • Genius - I had her learn all of the Logic skill and it helps to learn it faster. She used her contacts she attained through the charisma skill to call people over and tutor them for school as well in skill so she could gain more skill challenges.

Art had:
  • Artistic - So she could work on Painting.
  • Eccentric - For inventing which also made her have to learn the handiness skill.
  • Handy - Because she had to learn handiness anyway and would learn most of it through finishing the skill challenges of inventing. She only needed a little more work via upgrading things around the house.
  • Born Saleswoman - Was for going to the consignment store and selling all the inventions I made. Since she was going to leave the house just about every day she also checked the consignment store for a good camera and a book on martial arts which she actually found early on and made things go much easier. Later on when she was working on the Ultimate invention skill challenge I actually found a Heart-Shaped Cut Pink Diamond in the consignment store. She also worked on Collecting and Detonating things whenever she left the house to do the consignments and whenever I found a bug or stone that I hadn't found before.
  • Photographer's Eye - Was solely for gaining skill in photography which I was working on whenever I left the consignment store and could think of some landmark that I hadn't yet taken a picture of.
  • Savvy Sculptor - I know that this is one extra trait, but I had her re-spec traits using the happiness reward so that when she started sculpting she wouldn't accidentally break her sculptures. Another important thing it does is to allow my sim to learn the skill faster. At this point they could die at any given time and it is very important for them to finish maxing this skill. Also I wasn't sure exactly who was going to live long enough to start sculpting so I left this trait available for anyone.

Jackie had:
  • Green Thumb - Because he was to be the gardener. He planted about 50 grapes and 10 lettuce plants. The grapes were for the nectar that he would be mass producing and the lettuce was for Chef so she could make Autumn Salads.
  • Angler - Was so that he could catch more fish and gain more skill in fishing. He started off fishing as soon as the garden was up and running. I had him constantly fishing up spots for new fish using bait as necessary to reel in anything that he hadn't caught yet.
  • Disciplined - So that he could learn martial arts quickly. It is nice to finish a skill faster, but he was going to be breaking space rock blocks until he got all the gems that I needed for collecting so he ended up still working even after he finished leveling up his skill.
  • Over-Emotional - I had no need to get Athletic because he was going to do the marathon run and that takes 75 hours, which is well after the skill is complete. I figured that he might as well have some extra happiness to go along with his hard work.
  • Neurotic - The same reason.  I had nothing else for him to do that required a trait so I just gave him that.

“Anyway, I took the list of skills and the times that they took and tried to give each person about the same amount of stuff to accomplish. Then I rearranged them so that they would work the best with the other skills that they were learning. In the end they finished maxing all the skills they attempted.”

These are the skill challenges that they accomplished.

  • Logic - Grand Master, Celestial Explorer, Teacher Extraordinaire, and Skill Professer
  • Charisma - Celebrity, Personable, Super Friendly, Everybody's Best Friend, Comedian
  • Cooking - Star Chef, World Class Chef, Menu Maven
  • Writing - Speed Writer, Fiction Writer Specialist
  • Guitar - Master Guitarist and Money Maker

  • Sculpting - Chisel master, Prolific Sculptor, Master Sculptor and Ice Personality
  • Painting - Brush master, Prolific Painter, Master Painter
  • Inventing - Widget Wonder, Diabolical Detonator, Scrap Collector, Ultimate Invention
  • Handiness - Tinkerer
  • Consignment Shop - Reputation, Sales and Profit
  • Collecting - Gems, Metal, Amateur Rock Collector, Awesomest Rock Collector in the Universe, Beetle, Butterfly
  • Photography - Photog, Architectural Eye

  • Athletic - Body Builder, Fitness Nut, Marathon Runner
  • Fishing - Amateur Ichthyologist
  • Martial Arts - Timber Terminator
  • Gardening - Master Farmer
  • Nectar Making - Flavorful Feet, Vizard of Vine, Master of Nectar Making, Mix Master

“Of course the marathon runner died first. Although I didn't really have anything left for him to do. He was just wasting time trying to fish up a bunch of fish for another skill challenge when he died.”

Great job, Cameron! Along with ik, the two of you hold the proud distinction of being the only 2010 Tournament players to win back to back challenges. Thank you for sharing all of the great info.

Online Metropolis Man

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Re: Sims 3 Challenge Hall of Fame
« Reply #3 on: November 29, 2010, 10:13:18 AM »
2010 Tournament Finale: Setting the Stage for Maximum Moodlets, November 28
Participants: 8
Champion: NancyJ

Compared to the participation numbers of the other 2010 Tournament events, one might look at the Finale as a lackluster finish to an otherwise very engaging season. I do not look at it that way. #1, this event was not easy at all. The prep work to do well was quite involved—making lists of all the possible moodlets, and then figuring out how in the world to balance it all between 7 different Sims — a very challenging task and not for the faint of heart. #2, the Immortal Dynasty is in full swing and a lot of regular Tournament players are more wrapped up in that event. And #3, this is just a busy time of the year for many players — Thanksgiving to Christmas. But, all of that said, the 8 participants in the Finale did what they had to do to get the job done — racking up as many points as possible from as many different moodlets in the game.

NancyJ (Hazel) topped the other 7 players and with this 3rd Tournament win, she ended up on top of the World Ranking for the 2010 Tournament season. A couple other players were able to win two different events this year, but Hazel was the only player to get a hat trick.

Personally, not much has changed for Hazel since I last sat down with her after her Crazy Eights Collector’s Challenge win aside from her moving to Nottingham. For a little more background detail check out her HOF interview for the Career Couples’ Grand Slam Challenge. So, here’s the champ in her own words...

“The first thing I did was to make a list of moodlets, how long they last, how long they take to accomplish and any traits/career info needed to achieve them. My starting couple were a musician and chef to begin with. My lady “Adult” remained a musician throughout the game for the celebrity moodlet from signing autographs but she did some writing on the side so that she could write a masterpiece for someone to read — of course, I forgot about it when it came to taking the snapshot (oops!). Her husband “Elder” started as a chef to get the superior equipment, then moved on to scientist for the experiments before finally becoming a sculptor (was hoping to get “neighbourhood hero” but I think the crafting professions don't get that...nevermind). He was also my consignment guy and Eco-Friendly for those moodlets.”

“They had 2 children—“Teen” and “Child” (actually, they had 3, but 1 drowned and had to be replaced). My first snapshot was with Teen — after getting on the honor roll she donated to charity, threw a venue party at the pool with music provided by mum, she drank some Flame Fruit nectar, had her first romance and Woo'ed a few friends (Party Animal). Child was Mean-Spirited, Couch Potato, Loves the Outdoors so his snapshot was taken while sitting on a couch watching HD TV in the garden with an enemy nearby.”

“Teen had her boyfriend move in (when they were young adults) and he took up the Criminal/Thief career (for the I Am the Greatest moodlet). I haven't done that particular career in a while and it was riddled with bugs, but we made it through. After completing his Lifetime Wish he had to engage in some immoral liasons because I wanted him to have as many of “it’s a boy,” “it’s a girl,” “it’s twins,” “it’s triplets...” as possible without adding to the household (sadly, we only managed “its a boy” and “twins,” despite ending up with 6 children!). They all had to be born within 24 hours of his wedding day - I was hoping to get “newly engaged” but it was overwritten with the wedding moodlets. He was Evil, Kleptomaniac and Dramatic so he had the “fiendishly delighted” from donating to evil charities, returned stolen goods and faked passing out. His wife was Good and a Great Kisser so he had his day brightened and a great kiss. He also consumed nectar for the breathtaking balance.”
“Adult and Elder then had to have their snapshots within 24 hours. Spa treatments featured heavily in their scores as well as nectar drinking. I had bought the consignment store and added the nectar registry so he could make his own Life Fruit nectar for the “full of life” moodlet. Teen was a stylist so she gave Elder a makeover for the “stylin” moodlet. After that, Baby and Toddler were born and they were fairly simple — Elder had previously prepared 8 consoles that he had experimented on for the passive moodlets. These were placed around the baby's crib along with the incense. Toddler and his parents moved into a new house — (I tried to get “Fresh Start” also, but that didn't seem to fire) and had a birthday party (from Baby to Toddler). Child had also become a teacher so that he could spread the “Intrigued by Great Lecture” which oddly worked on the Toddler too.”

Congratulations again, Hazel, and thanks for sharing your strategy with others.

Online Metropolis Man

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Re: Sims 3 Challenge Hall of Fame
« Reply #4 on: February 15, 2011, 02:32:08 PM »
2011 Tournament

Bishop Takes Head Kick: Grandmaster Quan’s Grandmaster Challenge, February 13
Participants: 76
Champion: winnow

Though the Grandmaster Challenge was actually the 2nd event of the 2011 season, it was the first event to close. The concept was very simple — have your Sim attain Grandmaster rank in chess and martial arts.

The short 3-week Mini event set a new record for participation, 76 players. winnow, a 50-year-old Bay Area, CA resident topped the enormous field. Norma (her real name) has been playing Sims since the franchise began 10 years ago.

“I really didn't expect to win. There are so many good players here and I've learned so much from them that until I saw Metro’s PM, I assumed someone would beat my time. I immediately bought two chess tables and comfortable chairs, some decorations, and quick transportation. I bought two tables because in my tests, other Sims would use a single chess table (e.g., by not leaving after I'd defeated them) and slow down my progress. The comfortable chairs and decorations were important for moodlets since you need to be at the top of the bubble to skill quickly. I didn't use the fast car as much in Riverview as I had in my tests because I didn't need to stalk any of my opponents, but it was helpful to cut down the time needed to go to places like the consignment shop or grocery store and it was very helpful in China.”

“I skilled logic and chess by playing chess. I checked my needs and moodlets after every match. If I didn't think I'd have a full mood bar for the next 3 or so hours, I took care of my needs or generated some positive moodlets (e.g., by fulfilling a wish). I usually took care of my needs and moodlets after I called the opponent. When my opponent was unavailable, I played chess, worked out, or read the martial arts book.”

“The consignment shop and the Late Night wishes and moodlets were very helpful—I became a celebrity without really trying and got quite a few positive moodlets from discounts and being recognized. This was especially helpful in China where I couldn't control the environment like I could on my home lot. I was very lucky in not having to track any of my chess opponents down. I had all three Grandpas in Riverview so that helped my score a lot. I took Fast Learner first, then Prepared Traveler before I left for China. I took Steel Bladder after winning some sparring matches in China.”

“My main concern was becoming the martial arts grandmaster in six days so I'd only need one trip to China. In my tests, I had problems meeting some opponents, even when using Alexandria's excellent suggestion of going to the opponent's home. Other opponents became unavailable or took a long time to fight because of routing problems, e.g., being stuck in a sofa, especially because other Sims seemed to show up at my opponent's house at the same time I did. Those problems could easily make me need more than six days. I stayed in Riverview after becoming grandmaster in logic so I could finish reading the martial arts book (from the consignment store) and increase my athletic skill. Unfortunately, I couldn't find any non-paparazzi Chinese tourists so I couldn't increase my martial arts skill beyond level 3 in Riverview.”

“In China, I went to the Academy and trained until I got to level 4. Then I called an opponent. I used the Academy to shower between opponents and keep my other moodlets up. I stayed at the Academy until my third opponent, Liu Pei, who defeated me, refused a rematch and went home. I went to the store and bought several showers in the can, the large tent, and some dried food, then slept in the empty lot across from Liu's house, where I camped for my entire trip.”

“Liu refused a rematch at 6 AM the next day but I quickly went to his house and met him on his way out. I called all my opponents that day from the Pei's yard. It worked well because it's centrally located and I didn't have the routing problems that often plague the Sims, especially when they're sparring indoors.”

“After each match, I checked my needs and moodlets to make sure I'd be fairly high in the bubble throughout my next match. I ate fruit and dried food and used showers in the can. I slept in my tent for a couple of hours in the middle of the day to keep my mood bar up and avoid the fatigued moodlet. High-quality dried food, nectar, fighting outdoors, contemplating my surroundings, and being a celebrity were helpful in keeping my moodlets up. After I called my opponent and took care of my needs and moodlets, I meditated until my opponent was near the house, then greeted her/him as soon as (s)he got to the lot. Besides drawing good opponents, which I think was the biggest factor, I think the keys to my win were training in Riverview before going to China, calling my sparring opponents from residential lots, camping on the empty lot, and constantly monitoring my moodlet bar.”

Very excellent tips, Norma. Congratulations on your induction into the Challenge Hall of Fame!

My Garden of Eatin’ Smells Fishy, March 13
Participants: 95
Champion: Ziinia

95 forum members joined together to fish, garden and cook in the first Major event of the 2011 Tournament season—My Garden of Eatin’ Smells Fishy. This was a reworking of last year’s Perfectly Happy Challenge. Basically the goal was simple: make as much money as possible, but your income was restricted to cooking/culinary career, fishing, and gardening activities. A multiplier was then thrown in depending on how many opportunities were completed as well as how many perfect fish, plants, and recipes a player could rack up. It was a great test of skill on many levels.

Largo The Stampede was on top of the leaderboard for basically the entire event, but 18-year-old Eileen (forumer Ziinia) decided to upset the apple cart on the last day and topped Largo. Grandmaster Quan Champ, winnow, also posted an 11th hour result, and ended up in 2nd place.

So, let’s meet the Champ...

“I will be 19 years old in April, a girl who is haunted by the song “Come on Eileen.” I have roots in Poland, Germany and Sweden. I’m currently studying in my senior year of school, including some psychology. People are careful around me, thinking I will read their minds. My teacher loves this kind of logic. Still looking for Mr. Perfect, but it seems he is taking a long detour. I’m planning to go to uni to study computer games design.”

“I enjoy almost everything to do with computers. I love RPG games, and have produced a small game for my friend’s birthday using RPG Maker XP. I enjoy playing tennis and squash. I absolutely love animals. The cuddly ones, not insects or worms. I have a crazy cocker spaniel, who has gone nuts after her older companion (a SharPei) died, but she is still lovely, even if a bit crazy. I’m addicted to my iPhone and can’t be away from it for longer than 30 min, even in my sleep. I enjoy cooking, but not cleaning the mess afterwards :P. I like to dye my hair. My most stunning colour was bright, neon orange. Everyone used to say that the sun is coming out when I walk into the room.”

“I started playing the Sims as a little kid, just when the first series came out. I still have them, even though they don’t work anymore. I bought all of the series, excluding the stuff packs. I was falling in and out with the game. I can play it for 3 months and then put it away for 6. It depends on the mood. I love sometimes to torture my sims, do some experiments, or play out a story.”
“My strategy for the challenge kind of ignored the cooking skill at first. I started with the following traits: Angler, Green Thumb, Workaholic, Born Salesman and Excitable. I went off to fishing and gardening, though it was kind of hard and my Sim actually almost starved a few times. I somehow managed to get the opportunities for eggs and cheese, steaks and burgers quite quickly.”
“That was about when I started to fish for angelfish for bait for death fish, started to fish death fish around level 8/9 and that’s how I mastered my fishing skill. I’ve grown perfect cheese to fish for perfect Alley Catfish, and started getting perfect angelfish. Then I went to each location (3-day holiday each) to get seeds and books (culinary and fishing). I read what I could at that moment, fished a little and returned home. Afterwards I continued to fish for death fish which were approaching perfect and in the spare time I was getting my plants up to perfect as well. After getting each plant to perfect, except for money tree and Omni Plant, I returned to each location for another 3-day holiday and got each of the fish at a perfect quality. That was about week 5.”
“I was mainly selling death fish at the consignment store, but I also sold a lot of them to the normal grocery shop, as people got bored with my produce (that’s what the popup actually told me). I populated a small lake I made with death fish, so I was actually able to fish them all day long. I was making around… 20+ Death fish a day,  sometimes 30+, if the Omni Plants bloomed. I was then putting them into the store in the morning, leaving the 3 most expensive death fish and feeding them back to the Omni plants. Then I went fishing. Then around 17:00 I was waiting in the store to take out everything that wasn’t sold and sold the cheaper half at the normal store.”

“With 2 weeks left I changed my traits to get better quality recipes to: Angler, Natural Cook, Workaholic, Born Salesman and Perfectionist. I actually think I managed to cook all of the recipes in maybe 3-4 days.
At the end of the challenge I had 7 money trees and my fish were selling for about 9k at the consignment store.”

Thanks for sharing, Eileen, and congratulations on your induction into the Challenge Hall of Fame.

Stop the Presses! Write Here, Write Now, April 24
Participants: 76
Champion: ClayMask

Well, she finally won one. Yes, I’m talking about Rebecca, 50% of the “Dynamic Duo” — Largo the Stampede and ClayMask. Not surprisingly, the feared husband and wife team finished 1st and 2nd, and both earned nearly 24 million simoleans with their writers. Amazing. So, allow me to turn things over to the champ, so she can break down how she approached this writing challenge. But, first, a little info on who she is...

“My name is Rebecca. I'm 29 years old and I live Santa Clarita, CA, with my husband Cameron (Largo the Stampede). We've lived in the area since the beginning of this February, and just moved into a condo last week. For most of the five years prior to this we lived in San Diego, where my husband was stationed in the navy, and I worked in the biotech field. Since then, I have stayed at home and am loving it. I've played all the Sims games on and off for many years now, but usually only for a couple months at a time. Because of the Sims 3 challenges on this site, I've stayed interested in Sims 3 since May of 2010, with only a short break towards the end of last year after having completed the challenges for the tournament.”

“I'm pretty excited about finally winning an event. I began my actual attempt at this event using a Sim, Dr. Seuss, with the following traits:  bookworm, childish, family oriented, artistic, and neurotic.  I read online that choosing the childish, artistic and family oriented traits increased the value of children's books, which was the only genre that my Sim would ever write. Childish also gave the benefit of being able to learn the first three skill points of writing and painting effortlessly, since the toddler books are something that my sim would want to read anyway. I chose bookworm because of the increased reading and writing speeds, as well as wishes to read books. Neurotic was probably my Sim's most important trait, since this allowed my sim to freak out, which caused both a positive moodlet for 8 hours and prevented my sim from becoming stressed while writing. This way he could just focus on his writing, and not have to worry about having fun.”

“After moving to Twinbrook, the first thing my Sim did, after buying a few lettuce to be used for direct consumption, was to read books. This was mostly to get the increased writing speed bonus for reading 50 books. I think this may also cause the books written to be more successful. My Sim read most of the non skill books in the library, including the toddler books, with the exception of the really long books. He also kept an eye out for a vampire, which he found after two days or so. He had the vampire bite him and transformed at almost the exact same time that he ran out of books to read in the library. I had him earn his fourth point in painting, which he finished all while working on a single painting, due to being a vampire. I had him buy a laptop and portable stereo and go on a vacation to China at this point. While in China he "borrowed" the books from the base camp bookshelf, so that he could buy some nice things to surround himself with for his long hours writing at home. I also bought the incense from the general store for its moodlet and increased rate of learning benefits. I had him bring this with him everywhere to place near him while he was writing. The last thing he bought while in China was a few showers in a can and plasma fruits. He didn't end up using either of these much, for several reasons. He didn't get stinky or hungry very quickly once he had the dirt defiant and hardly hungry traits, and I mostly just had him bite his girlfriend for food and ignore his hygiene bar. While in China he worked on writing his first children's books. I ended his China trip after only one day.  Most of his future trips would also end after only one day, so that he could go on vacation whenever he had an opportunity to turn in a book in a foreign country. I found an additional benefit of vacations were that if I sent him on vacation at around 7 AM, which was towards the end of his day, he would have his needs reset upon return. This was even more beneficial if he was hungry, dirty, and with low social needs when he was sent on vacation. He would leave when his needs were low, and come back with them much higher.”  

“After this, all that was left was for him to go home and write. Before getting hardly hungry, he would invite his girlfriend over every day for a quick bite. He would hunt her first to get a better moodlet for the bite and not have his hunger bar decay for the first several hours. After getting hardly hungry he only had to invite her over every other day. He would also do a few quick romantic socials in order to fill up his social bar. Once he had written 10 books or so, I had him read them in order to finish taking his total books read count to 50. I also had him take his next two vacations soon after the China one, in order to get the incense from France and Egypt, so that he could be in a better mood wherever he was writing.”  

“I made sure that he used up all but one of his vacation days during the first 7 weeks, so that he would get full royalties for any book written while on vacation. Even though I sent him on vacation whenever he had an opportunity to deliver a book to a foreign country during this time, he still had to take a three day vacation to China at the end of it, in order to use up extra days. After he had enough money, I had him buy cars to speed up his transportation while returning from vacation, as well as any around town transportation he did while there. I also had him buy most of the books in foreign countries (all except the 400+ page ones), so that he could eventually read these in addition to the books he wrote. This included the foreign recipes. Once he had the happiness points for it he also bought a teleporter, so that he could speed up his returns from vacation even more, and his eventual trips to the library.”

“During my practice for this challenge I determined that 18 days was how much was required in order for him to read the books he had written, as well as most of the foreign books, cooking skill books, and recipes, all while in the library. So 18 days before the end of the challenge he started doing his reading. I ended up having him reach level 7 cooking, which gave him credit for three books from the skill books alone, and many more from both foreign and at home recipes. He read all 537 books he had written, but didn't quite finish all the foreign books he had bought, when the challenge ended.”

Great tips, Rebecca. Congratulations on winning your first event and your induction into the Challenge Hall of Fame. You and Cameron make quite the team and are fantastic Sims 3 competitors.

Ghost Hunter Bingo! May 8
Participants: 63
Champion: Largo The Stampede

The Ghost Hunter event was quite unique. I remember looking at Carl’s Guide at all the available types and ages and thinking his table looked like a bingo card. That’s how the idea for this event came about — to basically find as many spirits as you can and complete various bingos for points.

Largo The Stampede is always a threat, so let’s find out exactly what the champ did — “I finally got a win in this year's Tournament. My Sim, Dr. Egon Spengler, had the traits Loner, Genius, Slob, Ambitious, and Loves the Outdoors. Two of these were picked to help mitigate the interactions that the sim would need to do throughout the challenge not directly related to the primary objective of catching spirits. Loner - So he wouldn't have to socialize more than once a week; Slob - So he would never have to take a shower; Genius - So he can learn logic quickly; Ambitious - So that hopefully he would increase his work experience bar quickly and to give more happiness for wishes; Loves the Outdoors - Just because he would be outside a lot.”

“My plan for LTRs was to pick up Professional Simoleon Booster, Opportunistic, Multitasker, Entrepreneurial Mindset, Steel Bladder, and Meditative Trance Sleep. I just picked these up as they were most necessary.”

“As soon as I started my scoring file I purchased an empty lot, Sleep Slave bed, a portable radio, and the Yomoshoto Evasion. That would be all that he would ever own that wasn't given to him for free. After that he joined the Ghost Hunter profession and commenced learning logic in the library, only pausing to either take care of needs or take on Ghost Hunter jobs. In this fashion he was level 10 logic by Wednesday of the first week and level 10 Ghost Hunter by 9pm Thursday. When he cappedf logic he wandered the streets scanning for hidden spirits. Once he was level 10 it was much easier to find them. With the help of the car he bought and the equipment he gained it was easy to keep the spirit population in the town of Twinbrook to a minimum. Each weekend I actually ran out of spirits to catch.”

“I feel like I had a really lucky run with the opportunities that I received. Some days I picked up 2 opportunities in a day, and it seemed like most days I had a Ghost Hunter related opportunity. Most of the time I made at least 2k from them, some as high as 3k. I always had the expensive spirits ready to turn in for an opportunity because even though the spirits depreciate each night at midnight, they do not seem to while they are in the family inventory. So every night before midnight I placed all of the spirits I caught for the day in the family inventory along with my bed because I really didn't want any thieves stealing it while I was away.”

Good job, Largo, and thanks for sharing your tips.

Online Metropolis Man

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Re: Sims 3 Challenge Hall of Fame
« Reply #5 on: June 06, 2011, 03:41:06 PM »
Peter and Jack’s Rabbit-Hole Adventures, June 5
Participants: 48
Champion: NancyJ

The Rabbit-Hole event saw a slight drop in participation compared to other challenges this year. Bugs seemed to plague quite a few players and I think that was a big culprit. I had some nasty ones myself where my Sims turned invisible. Thankfully, resetting my couple ironed things out, but others were not so lucky. But, it was still a fun event. The goal was pretty simple — have two Sims max as many rabbit-hole careers as possible while also collecting as many physical carrots (career and skill rewards) as possible along the way. I have not sat down with last year’s World Champion, NancyJ (Hazel), since her victory in the 2010 Tournament Finale last November. Welcome back to the Hall of Fame, Hazel.

“My two Sims, Roger and Jessica, both had Workaholic, Neurotic, Schmoozer, and Ambitious as traits. Jessica also had Bookworm and Roger had Athletic. Workaholics can work from home to improve their performance on their days off, and Neurotic Sims can Freak Out which gives them an 8 hour can't get stressed buff so they can work hard all day. Schmoozers get what they ask for more often — good for asking for promotions and Ambitious Sims get promoted faster.”

“Jessica immediately joined the Music career and Roger signed up in Pro Sports. Both then took classes in the associated skills. Then they both went to the spa for the $3k package and then Roger went to the gym for a workout and Jessica went to the library to get level 1 Charisma. After the gym, Roger also learned level 1 Charisma while Jessica played her guitar then it was off to France. I started them as engaged so the first thing they did was get married which gave them a nice 24-hr moodlet and a bonus moodlet when they were near each other (I also found that they had that moodlet on every vacation if they got married on vacation). My goals in France were to get some nectar and cash items (opals, amethysts, titanium bars), get a headstart on some skills and pick up the WA fruit (pomegranate, 3 varieties of grape, pomelo and plum). I also wanted them to meet 25 Sims for the relationship bonus when meeting new sims back home. At the end of the 3 days both sims were at level 6 of their career skills and had a decent amount of cash to take back home (which would be topped off with some busking in the subway station). In total they had around $50k to build their home and buy motorbikes. But more importantly, they each had at least 10k happiness points to buy the Multitasker reward. There are very few careers/levels that cannot be maxed out in a working day with work hard + multitasker. These are the careers I chose for each Sim:
Roger — Professional Sports, Police x2, Director, Education, Science, Criminal x2.
Jessica — Music x 2, Acting, Military, Journalism, Culinary, Medical.”

“I chose these careers not only for the spread of career skills but also for potential opportunities. I found that bonus skills were available from the following careers:
Martial Arts — Professional Sports, Criminal, Military, Police
Photography — Police, Journalism
Nectar — Police, Military, Professional Sports
Cooking — Education
Fishing & Gardening — Culinary.”

“You may have noticed I had both Sims do the full film career — having the same Sim do both could have made 16 careers possible but I'd have lost 5 carrots. Both tracks have 1 skill available, plus 3 'awards' (which many people may have missed, the notification is overwritten by the promotion message and no special symbol appears on the theatre) and a level 10 bonus item. If the same Sim does both they don't get any of the awards they got for the other track or the level 10 bonus item (even though they should definitely get that one).”

“So I had 15 carrots from basic career skills. Of the 9 bonus skills available I managed to get 6 of them and 20 physical objects. 8 Film objects were obviously a big parts of that, the 3 from thief have already been well discussed in the challenge thread, as were the science ones. I think the police and culinary ones were also used as examples. The last 2 were from medical. There are a number of service awards available from the medical career but few were attainable. I was never able to get the key to the city that you're supposed to get for getting to level 10. I tested as long as 7 weeks in the profession and it just didn't happen for me but I did find 2 that were attainable. One was for running 3 vaccination clinics, the other was attending to 10 Sims in 'emergency situations'. Getting them to spawn was quite a chore. It involved spending all free time outside of work on public lots. I also found that they most often spawned within the first 2 hours of entering a lot so if someone hadn't gotten sick within 2 hours, I left and either went to a different lot of just left and came back. The 3 vaccination clinics was a bit hit and miss but I timed it so that I had nearly 3 full weeks for medical so I had a decent chance of getting them.”

“In terms of lifetime rewards, Attractive and Office Hero were important ones for me to get early — combined with the charisma challenges it meant starting as 'friend' with anyone I met or good friend with coworkers. The other really important one was Vacationer. This was critical to keep up the promotion schedule on the criminal career. When you get promoted at 3am on the criminal path your work performance won’t increase when you go to work until after midnight but your performance goes down if you don't go. With Vacationer you can skip work without your performance going down and if you start 'working from home' more than 3 hours before your shift is due to start you can carry on working till around 11 and then leave for work and finish off your shift and hopefully still get your promotion. Roger pretty much started working from home as soon as he got back from work, then had a short sleep, freaked out and then worked to 10:30-11 and grabbed a shower or food (by that time he had dirt defiant and hardly hungry) and headed to work.”
“My final point (I promise) was knowing when you could get promotions and when it was worth spending your day off working from home — if it wouldn't affect your final day (due to not being able to get promoted to level 10 on a day off) then it probably wasn't worth it and the time would be better spent on skills. Promotions are measured in hours not days — so it’s 72 hours not 3 days, which sounds like a small difference but its actually quite important. If you get a promotion on Thursday, you can still get one on Sunday so long as it’s later in the day. So, if I was shooting for a promotion on a day off I would go to bed as soon as they got home from work so they could work from home in one long session. Promotions can be obtained from 25% performance but I found approx 55-60% with boss at good or best friend status was 100% success (so long as I kept focus on that Sim while asking.)”

Great stuff, as always, Hazel. Some of your best insider tips yet. I especially liked your breakdown of how Vacationer helps with that wonky Criminal career. Great job with the win.

A Photography Challenge? Oh, Snap! June 19
Participants: 31
Champion: ClayMask

Well, the Photography Challenge was unfortunately plagued with bugs affecting a great number of players. There seemed to be some connection with accepting opportunities and having things go bad — Sims freezing, the skill journal not opening, things not registering, etc. I was spared the ordeal — I suppose it might have been because I never took a single opportunity. I did not even realize at the time there would have been a connection.

Oh, well. 31 players ended up submitting a score and in the end ClayMask secured another victory. Her entry is a bit lengthy, but there is so much quality info here from the champ that I’ll just run the whole thing pretty much as is. Enjoy.

“I am very disappointed that so many people had trouble with bugs during this challenge since it is my favorite challenge so far. I enjoyed it so much because there were a lot of subjects that I had not taken pictures of and I had to try some very new things in order to take them. It was the most complex challenge that I have ever played.”

“I created a Sim, Jessy, with the following traits:  photographer’s eye, kleptomaniac, charismatic, born saleswoman, and brave. It is obvious why I picked photographer’s eye and born saleswoman. I picked charismatic because she would need to have many friends join her household. Charismatic people can repeat themselves endlessly without being dull, which helps speed up the friend making process. I picked brave so that she would not become scared while adventuring in tombs. She was a kleptomaniac because she would need to steal tombstones at the beginning of the challenge. I gave her the Living in the Lap of Luxury lifetime wish, which was completed on the first day using my strategy.”

“After creating my character, I had her befriend and marry Nick Alto. I figured the Alto house would be a good house to hold the many people that would be joining the household. Marrying him also completed her lifetime wish. After they got married, she immediately divorced him and kicked all of the Altos out of the house. That night, I had Jessy go to the cemetery and steal tombstones. She stole three things before midnight and three after. I don’t think that they were all tombstones, but she returned another night too in order to bring her tombstones stolen total to six. I placed all the tombstones in the backyard of her house and would have her talk to any ghosts that she saw come out of them. I also made sure she did not learn any skills for the next few days, until she got the “Oh, My Ghost!” opportunity.  
In the meantime, I had her begin to gather the housemates that she would need for various pictures. I wanted to have people from all the careers that she would need pictures from for the best in class collection in the house. I initially had her convince the following people to join:  Jamie Jolina (medical), Blair Wainwright (police), Ayesha Ansari (criminal), Tori Kimura (political), Molly French (culinary), and Marty Keaton (sports). I later found out that the person required for the photo Superstar was not a sports superstar but a musical one, but by that time it was too late. When Jessy got the Oh, My Ghost opportunity I also had her resurrect a ghost named Cornelius. I had him master the logic and photography skills as quickly as he could, using a photography book and camera that he bought from the consignment shop. I had Jessy avoid photography except for what she could learn from the book until he had learned both skills. He then tutored her in photography until she reached level 10.”  

“I had her marry Cornelius so that she could get the My Ghostly Spouse photo, and then had her go on various vacations. She only spent one day in China and one day in France at first, bringing Tori Kimura to both. Tori Kimura was charming enough to quickly gain a romantic interest everywhere that she went, due to her high charisma skill, completed charisma skill challenges, and the attractive reward. This allowed for the Lovers in China, Lovers in France, and later Lovers in Egypt photos. Jessy was able to take pictures of all of the foreign plants while in France, including all types of grapes (I had her learn martial arts so she could meditate to visit the island). Most of the remaining vacation days were spent in Egypt. While in Egypt she visited Pyramid of the Burning Sands, where she got a photo of flame fruit, and Pyramid of the Sky, where she got photos of a money tree and life fruit plant. She also visited Abu Simbel, where she ended up gathering enough gold figurines to complete the collection. Of course there was also the visit to The Great Sphinx in order to get the Soulpeace Statue photo. Between these and some other tombs in Egypt that she visited, she gathered enough sarcophagus of the kings fragments to assemble a sarcophagus at home. She also took repeated pictures of The Great Sphinx, A Pyramid, and Abu Simbel (which was taken at a great distance), since they were all very valuable.”  

“I had her housemates continue with their careers, and she would take a photo of them after they reached level 9 and then have them move out. After the first one moved out, Jack Bunch joined the household for a little bit so the military bigwig photo could be gotten. After a couple more people moved out, she got the fertility treatment lifetime reward and became pregnant. She ended up having twin girls, neither of them ghosts. One she had age up as quickly as possible, so that she could have a grandchild before the end of the challenge. This daughter and the grandchild moved out after the shot My Grandchild was taken. The other was moved out with someone that had reached level 9 in their career. In the meantime she took daily photos of the gold figurines collection (Egyptian Statue Set), since it was very valuable, and continued collecting various other photos. She took a couple repeat photos of a few other valuable ones, including Magic Gnome, Bookstore, City Hall, General Hospital, Sports Stadium, Town Theatre, and The Gym.”

“After her first pregnancy she became pregnant again, having two ghost babies. She took a picture of one of these in order to get the picture Ghostly Family. These babies ended up getting taken away so Jessy could get the picture A Social Worker. That was a very emotionally difficult photo to get. Jessy used midlife crisis to change her kleptomaniac trait to evil in order to help her assemble a cursed sarcophagus of the kings on her first try. This she used to change both Cornelius and Ayesha into mummies, so that she could get the Doubly Dead and Mummy Having a Snack photos. In order to get the Doubly Dead photo she first had to divorce Cornelius, but the photo registered after that. The Mummy Having a Snack photo was simply Ayesha the mummy sitting down and eating a bowl of mac and cheese. I then had both mummies move out since Ayesha had already reached level 9 in the criminal career.”

“At this point Jessy returned to the science lab and resurrected all of the ghosts from the remaining tombstones, in order to get most of the remaining photos from the paranormal collection. This included the photos Too Many Ghosts, A Serious Ghost Problem, A Ghostly Problem, and My Dead Enemy. She had already gotten the photos It’s Haunted, A Ghost, and Wandering Ghost from random ghosts leaving their graves and wandering around the house while I wasn’t controlling them. At the end of the challenge Jessy married Jamie Jolina in order to get the My Spouse and My Main Squeeze photos, since these photos would not register for a dead spouse.”

“Most of the pictures that I did not explain in the strategy written above did not require much planning to get. All photos were sold at the consignment shop after earning all the consignment shop challenges by selling other things at the consignment shop and having the suave seller lifetime reward. All of the collectables that I was able to get photos of were bought at the consignment shop except for ones found randomly in pyramids, such as the gold figurines collection. I was not able to get pictures of any relic collection other than gold figurines, and was not able to complete the collectables collection for this reason. I had a few other photos scattered throughout various collections that I was unable to get, and used Ansel Adams photos for. These were Superstar, Fancy Tent, A Thief!, Death on Vacation, Simply Death, Pleading to Sphinx, and Political Demonstration. If you are wondering how I got any of the others, feel free to ask me.”

Rebecca, you just seem to get better and better with each passing challenge. Thanks so much for the in-depth detail for everyone. Truly great stuff. Congrats.

Online Metropolis Man

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Re: Sims 3 Challenge Hall of Fame
« Reply #6 on: July 22, 2011, 04:38:10 PM »
Baby Boomer III: How Big is Your Family Tree? July 17
Participants: 66
Champion: sarcasticsuperherogirl

The Baby Boomer events have always been very popular. I put a new spin on things this year by allowing players to age up kids early with a cake provided they accomplished certain goals in the various childhood stages. It was a lot of fun and a new champion emerged, sarcasticsuperherogirl. She topped the large field of 66 players with a great score. So, without further ado, here’s the champ...

“My name is Kelley, and I'm a single mom to a four year old little boy! I've been playing the Sims all the way back to Sims 1. I'm 26, and right now I'm taking time off work to help take care of my grandma and grandpa who recently had a heart attack and a stroke, respectively. Anyway, enough about me, and on to the meat and potatoes!”

“Let me just start this by saying that the only thing I'm really any good at when it comes to the Sims is making babies. I've done the 100 Baby Challenge on two seperate occasions, and even outside of 'challenges', my Sims are very family oriented. I started with Todd and Teena McBabymaker, who's traits were pretty similar: Todd — family oriented, hates the outdoors, artistic, workaholic, neurotic; Teena — family oriented, hates the outdoors, artistic, bookworm, natural cook. Family oriented is pretty self explanatory; it gives them the desire to help their kids with various endeavors, as well as the babymaking in the first place. Hates the outdoors for the parents as well, so that they're not itching to go outside after long periods of being stuck inside with the kiddies. Artistic to help with their careers; Painting for Todd, and Writing for Teena. Todd’s workaholic trait keeps him from getting stressed while working, and Teena is a natural cook so that she can cook the family meals without them having to eat charcoal half the time ;).”

“After moving them into their very small home (one bedroom, one bath for the time being) the first thing I did was told Todd and Teena to hit the showers and get to holding up the family name! After that, the TV and radio both got turned on to the kids station (I play with the music off, thank God) and set them to work on their various jobs until their first set of babies came.”

“The babies and toddlers are pretty straightforward to take care of, especially given their family oriented traits, and I was fortunate enough to get to age all of my babies up early. The toddlers were usually aged up after one or two days (again thanks to the family oriented trait). As children, the kids were tutored by their parents until going to school which gave them A's immediately, and then they attended school for five days. As for friends, on the weekends they went to the park and played tag, and their first day of school was devoted to making friends. Teens were only slightly more challenging because you had to cake up twice as many people! The teen's childhood friend came over and got caked, while my teen recieved the inappropriate trait, giving them the opportunity to kiss without having to deal with the romantic interactions. School was pretty easy, and the part-time jobs weren't that hard either. I didn't really use any specific strategy for the jobs, just got pretty lucky with their promotions.”

“Todd's LTW was 'Surrounded By Family', and Teena's was 'Professional Author', so they had their LTW's completed pretty early on. Out of the last four kids that were at home when Mommie Dearest turned old, only two of them were able to complete their LTW's before time was up.”

“In a final note, I didn't use any fertility treatments at all, but I still ended up with only 4 single births, 7 sets of twins, and 4 sets of triplets, just from using the radio and TV. That's everything I can remember about my strategy! I still can't believe I won this one :).”

Thanks, Kelley. You offered up some great tips. Giving the Teens the Inappropriate tip was especially clever. Congrats on your induction into the Challenge Hall of Fame.

Here’s a Tip: Party Like a Rock Star! August 14
Participants: 34
Champion: Metropolis Man

34 players from around the world had their Sims pick up their guitars and do battle in the Party Like a Rock Star Challenge. It was a lot of fun. Scoring was based on largest tip, the two largest concert payouts, best autograph session and then you needed to multiply all that by the number of Epic Parties throw over the course of the challenge.

I’ve been playing Rift a heck of a lot lately, so I was worried I would not even finish this event. But, I’ve played quite a few guitarists in the past, so I know the tricks inside and out and ended up posting the top score after grinding my guitarist (named Rock Star, lol) a few hours the last day of the event. But, I’ll keep this short and sweet given I’m not into being in the spotlight.

The vast majority of my score came from the tip. I detail that in this post in the challenge, so there’s no sense in repeating of all that. But, I’ll talk about a couple other things.
Rock Star was given what I consider the obvious traits: Ambitious (to shoot up the career performance meter faster and more happiness points upon completing wishes), Artistic (learns guitar faster), Friendly (makes the bandmates metric a little easier — or at least becoming friends with them outside of work), Virtuoso (bigger tips), Loves the Outdoors (I opted for the bear in the woods technique of no house for Rock).  There was no reason to ever change traits.

I honestly don’t have much to say on the autograph session or the concerts aside from the obvious fact that the stadium concerts pay out more than the Theatre concerts and with autograph sessions you want to choose a high traffic area where Sims have a chance of going into the host site. But, those things are clearly is not my strength looking at other players scores. So, read the posts after the event was closed for some good tips in that department.

Every party was Epic for Rock. It was just a question of inviting at 7 am which was early enough that I could host a 2nd party the same day. People showed up and I immediately plopped them down in comfy couches to watch TV. A huge sculpture was right nearby as well as nice music playing. Guaranteed good moods and fun for everyone. That’s the key to Epic parties. I never fed them, no bathroom anywhere. Which brings me to the next point...

Motive Mobile was golden and was the key for Rock to rock 24/7. After he was able to purchase Motive Mobile upon completing his Rock Star LTW (when you’re Rock Star and become a Rock Star I guess you...become yourself? Lol.) there was never a need to eat, pee, shower, sleep, have fun, or talk to anyone. I’d pummel him into the ground for 12-16 hours straight of cueing up Two Steps at a Time and then have him quickly jump in the Motive Mobile. Because of this, Hardly Hungry, Steel Bladder, and Meditative Trance Sleep were never purchased. I just made a beeline for Motive Mobile. And that was his life for nearly 8 weeks — interspersed with days of throwing the parties.


Random Wishmasters II: Foster Parent Frenzy August 28
Participants: 37
Champion: ClayMask

Despite the bugs that continue to plague many players, 37 participants submitted scores in the 2nd rendition of this popular challenge format. This year’s event upped the difficulty by having players adopt one child every week beginning at week 7. Lots of juggling!

ClayMask is always a huge threat to anyone hoping to win and this event was no different. She won big. I mean BIG. In fact, after she posted her score, I rubbed my eyes and stared at the computer screen thinking...”How the heck did she do that?” So, without further delay, here’s the champ to explain a really cool trick she discovered...

“I started this challenge with two Sims, which I had become vampires as soon as possible. This allowed them to learn skills quickly and also gave them the ability to generate wishes to drink plasma juice and go inside at regular intervals. They were never allowed to finish a plasma juice because I would just cancel the action as soon as they had the plasma juice and it would complete the wish. Then I would make them eat a plasma fruit because it was quicker. Once the adopted kids became young adults the parents could bite them and propagate the vampire plague that was consuming Twinbrook.”
“My main strategy in this challenge was to have everyone except one person learn all the potions from the chemistry set and repeatedly fulfill the Make a Radical Reparum wish, if they could. I set up a lab in the basement with a bunch of chemistry benches and a clogged toilet. When a Sim entered the room, he or she would get a wish to make a radical reparum potion. This wish was worth 500 points, took about half an hour to complete once logic was maxed, and would respawn once completed. I was careful never to cancel a wish to make a radical reparum because I suspect that cancelling the wish stops it from spawning.” 
“One of my two first Sims, Crystalflight, could not spawn the endless Radical Reparum wishes during the great majority of the challenge. I cannot remember whether I ever cancelled a wish to make a Radical Reparum on her, but it was kind of a relief to have someone do other things. I had her supply everyone with sleeping elixirs, garden, fish, and make ambrosia to keep peoples’ moods high (although she didn’t need to make it much with the aid of a food replicator). Once Crystalflight could make ambrosia I fed it to my sims weekly unless I wanted them to age. I also had Crystalflight learn almost all the skills and accomplish their associated big wishes and teach the teen sims to drive.  She caught perfect versions of more than 13 types of fish, and these were used whenever possible to fulfill her adopted childrens’ lifetime wishes of Presenting the Perfect Private Aquarium.  Most of the children easily spawned this lifetime wish while fishing during their first day of existence. I would then put the 13 fish in the aquariums in order to fulfill their lifetime wish, and then remove the fish after it was fulfilled. Two children did not spawn this lifetime wish. One of them spawned the lifetime wish Renaissance Sim, and I was able to have him fulfill this by maxing logic, fishing, and photography. I could not get the last adopted sim to spawn the private aquarium lifetime wish either, but he did spawn super popular while I was trying to get him to spawn Lifestyle of the Rich and Famous. I did manage to get him to complete this lifetime wish during that week, as well as maxing photography and learning to drive. I did not have him work with the chemistry set at all.”
“Photography was something that I maxed on all my sims, due to the short amount of in game time required to max it.  It also has many wishes that spawn if a similar wish is not already present, in the form of “take a picture worth X simoleans.” These wishes can be quite valuable, worth up to 10,000 happiness each. I also had all teen sims learn to drive, which was a pretty quick way to make 2000 happiness points for both the teen and Crystalflight.” 
“One thing that I did to help keep Crystalflight’s happiness earned per hour high was that a little bit into the challenge I calculated that she had been making an average of about 400 happiness per hour from wishes. Therefore, if she had a small wish like give a gift to a foreign sim, it was worth doing if she could make more than 400 happiness per hour from it.  If she made less, it was not worth doing. These wishes were rarely worth doing for the Radical Reparum making Sims unless their social need was low.”
“I tried to minimize my chance of Sims disappearing by getting almost all of my travelling done before adopting any kids. I had both parents complete the martial arts tournament and reach visa level 3 in one country each. I also had Sunshine, the one who was always making Radical Reparums, max sculpting at a vacation home. The first adopted kid used up the remaining vacation days by completing the martial arts tournament, maxing athletic, and completing a wish to travel to Egypt, where he stayed for one day.”
“I decided to use the age ups that I earned from completed lifetime wishes in the following way:  the first child used two age ups, one during his first day and one during his second day. These were earned because both parents had completed their lifetime wishes (Emperor of Evil and International Super Spy). Though these lifetime wishes involved them working in rabbit hole jobs, they quit these jobs after achieving their lifetime wishes.  The second child also used two age ups, earned from the completion of both his brothers’ and his own lifetime wishes. The third and fourth children used the age up they earned from completing their own lifetime wishes in order to skip most of the long teen stage (they were only a teen for one day). The fifth and sixth adopted children did not have enough time left in the challenge to benefit from skipping the teen stage in this manner, so they went to the teen stage as soon as they completed their lifetime wish, in order to get off school an hour earlier.”
“The main source of income for this family, which allowed them to complete all wishes in the form of “be worth more than X simoleans” (including the “be worth more than one million” final wish) was the inheritance lifetime reward.  They used this wealth to buy many businesses and properties in order to complete the wishes about being business partners in X businesses and owning X properties, but only the parents and first child got the benefit from these.”

Incredible stuff, Rebecca. Who would have thought that a clogged toilet would largely be responsible for setting off a chain of events leading to over 5 million happiness points?  ;D   

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Online Metropolis Man

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Re: Sims 3 Challenge Hall of Fame
« Reply #7 on: September 17, 2011, 12:41:18 PM »
Hobos to Heroes Race, September 11
Participants: 29
Champion: Agneza

Hobos to Heroes was one of this year’s 3-week Mini events and quite different in its goal — players started with 2 Sims and were forced to get them to the enemy relation level and on top of that, starve them! Once those conditions were met (being hobos) players then made a mad dash to have their Sims accomplish the Firefighter Hero LTW as quickly as possible. Choosing some of the optional “nasty” traits during CAS gave players the chance to reduce their overall time at the end. There was definitely an element of luck involved, as earthquakes and large house fires resulted in players being able to rescue more Sims. But, all in all, lots of fun was had by all.

Agneza has been playing in all of this year’s events, but has never won. But, she struck gold in this event, so it was nice to see a new face rise to the top of the heap. I’ll let her tell you a little more about herself...  

“I was born in Poland in 1953, but have been living in Croatia more than 30 years in the beautiful town of Pula. My real name is Agnieszka, but everybody calls me Agneza. I'm married and have three kids. My profession is an astrologer. I started to play Sims 2 when it was released, but had long periods of inactivity. I’m a hobby painter, so most enjoy the  building parts of the game. I've been playing The Sims 3 since January, but only recently I purchased a better computer, so now I have the expansions too. I'm enjoying the challenges and learn a lot from every event.”

There’s no need to repeat what Agneza already said as far as her strategy. She details how she approached the event in this post. Congratulations on your induction into the Challenge Hall of Fame!

Mad Max Skillz Marathon: Cheaters Welcome, October 9
Champion: NancyJ

Last year I let participants cheat in one event — a skilling event involving Elders where you could have static needs on all the time. It was quite popular, so I took it a step further this year and let players start with a Young Adult. The concept was quite simple — max as many skills as you can and finish as many skill challenges as possible. That’s it. Last year’s Tournament Champion, NancyJ,  rose to the top with a remarkable score of all 19 skills maxed and completing 60 skill challenges! Incredible. Take it away, Hazel...

“While it might not seem like it because most of the challenges take longer than it takes to max a skill, skilling up as quickly as possible was probably the most important strategy. Many skills feature increased production or success rates for higher skill levels so the quicker you get to the higher levels the better. To get faster skill ups I chose traits appropriate to the skills I was working on. I grabbed Fast Learner as soon as possible and probably the most important — Mixology Skill Gain drinks. With the skill challenge for mood drinks completed they last 6 hours and in addition to the nice mood boost, really speed up skill gains (somewhere between 15-30%).”
“My starting traits were Artistic, Bookworm, Charismatic, Genius, Virtuoso and my lifetime wish was the $50k cash one. The first thing I did was buy a guitar and then head out to city hall to learn charisma and then to the theatre to learn guitar - there aren't many people about at 8am. After my lessons I 'jammed' in front of the theatre until around 1am when most of the Sims had gone home. I made about 18 friends in that first session. Then I went to the library to read up on my gardening. No more busking after the first day because now the celebs are out and about and other than avoiding the annoyance of being hounded by the paps and having rumours spread about you - I found that you couldn't make friends through guitar playing if you were a celeb, only increase relationship with people you were already friends with. Time for private parties - I chose the beach because it has food, drink and entertainment available, location parties also allow you to control the guestlist. If you select 'exclusive access', only your invited guests can attend, so no party crashing celebs mucking everything up. At the parties I carried on playing my guitar until I had enough points for Observant. When I had that I told jokes to each guest until I had 20 friends, 10 best friends and told 100 jokes. Because I did so well on my first day making friends, I didn't have to throw too many parties and I didn't get the traits challenge completed at this point - I figured I'd finish it with the chess tournament but that didn't happen. In the end I accosted some strangers in the park while I was out photographing. In the evenings I worked on my gardening skill in the library until I was up to level 8 and read the first logic book.
After a quick stop off at the grocery store for supplies, I went back to my lot for the first time in days. I planted one of everything that was plantable from the store and fertilised with plasma fruit. Then it was on to mixology. I did enough to be able to make 'nice' skill gain drinks and then switched back to guitar (taking drinks as needed). I levelled up to about 9.6 on performances and then took another drink and went busking in the subway station until I had 50k. At this point I bought 10 cheap dishwashers and 10 cheap sinks - more on that later.”

“With my lifetime wish completed and a lot of guitar happiness points too I bought, super green thumb, Fast Learner, Better Mixologist and No Bills Ever (with testingCheatsEnabled on its so easy to lose track of time and not pay your bills). I tended the garden and replanted the better lettuce, tomato and apple samples. Then I finished up making the 500 drinks needed for the challenge (all skill gain) and invented the 20 (or 25, I forget) drinks needed for another challenge - I found that I discovered them faster at level 10 than when I switched to creating drinks as soon as they were available. After mixology I went back to instruments because I wanted to ensure that I got the gardening skill opportunities and the instrument skills have a low number of possible opportunities so I like to think that increased my chances of getting them.”
“After completing the instruments the next most important was logic: I had to get it in early while there were still children available, preferably non-celeb and still friendly enough to come over when I call. I searched the galaxy til level 5 and then I tutored children when they were available and searched the galaxy some more when they weren't. Potions just weren't happening for me even at level 10 and I couldn't get the first chess opponent to come over so I left logic there and moved on.”
“My next set of traits were : Artistic, Bookworm, Disciplined, Natural Cook and Savvy Sculptor. I wanted to get martial arts in early because it also skills up athletics which allows you to jog. Any time I needed to go somewhere, I jogged. (particularly collecting since you run off-road most of the time anyway but it doesn't count for the cardio challenge unless you "jog here"). I combined cooking and painting next - making salads and then sushi in the evenings and painting between about 3am and 5pm. I painted small paintings exclusively and with the traits and the extra creative reward I was able to get all the challenges done with just 30 small paintings. Instead of putting food in the fridge I put it in a chest. Then I went to the library to learn all the new songs and recipes from the bookstore so I would have a good count of read books before starting writing.”

“Here's where those dishwashers and sinks come in - while I was writing I was also throwing parties and hiring a maid. I made a point of inviting unlucky and technophobic sims just to increase my odds of them breaking things. I bought a buffet table and removed anything else of interest from the lot so all they had to do was eat (also bought legendary host so they would have a good time no matter what). During writing and sculpting I threw 1-2 parties per day and while the maids (they always sent 2 because of all the "mess") were on the lot I would put out 1 dirty plate from my chest and 1 drinks platter (can only be washed in a sink for some reason) at a time to maximised the number of times the dishwashers and sinks got used. Eventually I had 10 broken plumbing items and 10 broken electrical items waiting to be repaired. Sculpting is fairly straight forward: started with 5 clay, then 10 ice, then 5 topiary, that gets the 20 needed for faster sculpting. Then it was just a matter of finishing off the other challenges.”

“Time for round 3: Eccentric, Handy, Photographer's eye, Loves the outdoors, Angler. Inventing is an easy one - make 250 smashers, blow up a car, hope for a pink diamond and the skill opp, don't bother with Master Inventor and then do this. Handiness - glug some rapid reparum potions you prepared earlier (I think I went back to potion making before starting round 3) and fix up the broken items. I mostly got my upgrades through tinkering - I tried to choose items that had unique upgrades and preferably didn't have common ones like the microwave, washing machine and stove. Photography mostly got done while I was doing other stuff - I lined up a bunch of metals and gemstones from the 'collectables' set and photographed those once per day, the only challenge I did was Architectural Eye (didn't think it was possible to get, then one of my Sims in another game got it, I found that photographing the gym added anything from 1-9 landmarks to my total). Fishing - not much to say there, a quick jog around the various ponds (park, pinnochle pond, science museum then beach) sort that out then finish up the skill in the graveyard.”
“With that done I just had to finish up the 99 lettuce/tomato/anchovy thing at the consignment store as well as selling all my left over sculptures. Finished off any remaining cardio hours, pumped iron for 60 hours, finished off my nectar making (I did it as I went along because it bores me to do it all in one go), had another go at the chess tournament but Nick still wouldn't come over. I invited friends over and taught them skills. So in terms of skill challenges I did them all except Architectural Eye (75 unique subjects would have been doable but I couldn't be bothered), master inventor - would have taken too long, same goes for Master of Meditation, vizard of the vine and the martial arts contest weren't possible, professor of drinks - no way was I playing in bridgeport (or trying to squeeze all the venues into SV) and master mixologist seemed like it would take forever.”

Great stuff, Hazel. The 10 dishwashers/sinks and dirty plates tricks in combination with parties was really smart. Wish I had thought of that one myself. :) Congrats on another entry into the Hall of Fame.

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Re: Sims 3 Challenge Hall of Fame
« Reply #8 on: November 30, 2011, 12:14:36 PM »
Tournament Finale: The 4 X 4 Golden Opportunity, November 27
Participants: 13
Champion: drift9999

The 2011 13-event Tournament season wrapped up with a difficult challenge involving 4 Sims. The goal was for them to earn as much money as possible from 16 opportunities (4 each). All opportunities had to be different from each other. drift9999 (Jeremy) proved that ClayMask is mortal and bested her by a few million with a very impressive score. He will be a serious force to reckon with next year (he did not earn a world ranking this year given the Finale was his first event). So without further delay, here’s Jeremy in his own words...

"Hi there. I'm Jeremy, a guy (20 years old) who will be studying Computer Engineering at the University next year. I've been playing Sims since The Sims 2 came out. Actually, I've been lurking on the boards for a while, and have enjoyed some of the past challenges but decided to get my feet wet with this one. I thought things through and figured out a strategy, but never expected to win!”

“In trial runs I'd experimented with having one Sim fish, one Sim sculpt and two Sims paint, but I wasn't always able to land the desired opportunities in all of the skills (they are Heaps of Fresh Fish to be done with 15 deathfish, Delivering the Green which involves up to eight topiaries and Painting the Town, requiring 15 paintings). I decided to go with two Sims for sculpting and two for painting to settle the skill opportunities. However, the real driving force behind the 16 + million earnings was not these skill opportunities, but two particularly valuable Career opportunities, as I’ll discuss shortly..."

“I gave all Sims the LTW of Swimming in Cash. Starting in week 1 I quickly went on vacation to China and picked up the "Telescopic Metal" opp to grab as many metal bars as I could, and also managed to bag a Miner from the Consignment Store. Transfiguring 8 items with value 3500-4999 will give you a Spire Cut Tiberium, which grows into a Large Spire Cut worth quite a lot (upwards of 30,000). Thus I made two and sold them to knock the family funds over 50k to settle the LTW. While in China, I picked up a training dummy and board breaker as well for use later on.”

“I gave them all Ambitious to get a bunch of extra happiness points. 2 Sims cashed in the "My Best Friend", one "Motive Mobile" and one "Collection Helper". The basic plan for the skill ops was to train each pair of Sims in just painting or sculpting and no other skills to maximize their chances of landing the opportunities I wanted. I allowed one sculptor to train Martial Arts, as well, for picking up gems from the board breaker. I scheduled the Sims - for those with three skill ops, they would complete at the end of weeks 5, 8 and 12; for those with four, weeks 4, 7, 9 and 12. (Of course, by the time it was time to hand in the first batch of ops, I gave them Opportunistic).”

“I promptly shorted-out the 2 Simbots to give them suitable traits (the painter got Perfectionist and Artistic and the sculptor got Perfectionist, Artistic and Savvy Sculptor). Upon reaching 10,000 LTW points I got "Change Lifetime Wish" to give them again Swimming in Cash, which was easily settled by selling large spire cut Tiberiums. With 30,000 points I got the painter Extra Creative and the sculptor Artisan Crafter. Cleared the skill challenges for the simbots (other than the one to sculpt 25 ice sculptures for the sculptor) to boost the value and efficiency of their work, then started working on large quantities of Large Paintings for the painter (I planned for 31 masterpieces; 15 for "Painting the Town", 10 for "The Business of Decor" and six more for general ones like "A Large Painting", "Popular Painter" etc) and for the sculptor, I planned for 8 Topiaries and 5 Stone Sculptures (for "Delivering The Green", up to 8 topiaries, and the stones for general ops like "Your Best Work", "Sculpture for a Friend" etc). Once they were done, I regrettably 'offed' them in the pool, to raise the value of their work.”

“The Tiberium op is in the science career and requires the delivery of one piece of Tiberium. I used a large spire cut worth around $45k.”

“The real key to my strategy was the pair of nectar ops which are found under Career (Commander's Cabinet is under military, and Nectar Emergency is under law enforcement). This required the use of the display case to transfigure items. Eight items worth more than $100,000 will produce a Nectar worth just under $100,000.”

“As discussed earlier, eight items worth at least $3500 produces a spire-cut tiberium which grows to a large spire cut worth about 30000 - 45000 if placed on the ground after some time. Also, 8 gems which contain five different types will produce a soulpeace which can be heart-shaped cut to produce a gem worth just under 20,000; alternatively 8 metals containing five or more different types will produce a supernovium ingot, worth just under 10k. Thus two Large Spire Cuts plus one large Heart-Shaped Soulpeace or two Supernoviums and a few extra relics, metals or gems will be sufficient to bump the total above 100k. I made sixteen bottles as soon as possible (the maximum one opportunity can ask you for is eight) and placed them in Necteaux Racks sculpted by my sculpting Sims and Simbot, and placed the whole setup in a basement. Honestly, some parts were pretty boring, using collection helper to grab as many gems and metals as possible, and also abusing the consignment store by buying out its inventory several times to get a supply of gems and metals. Anyway, they aged accordingly and by the time it was Week 12, each bottle was worth upwards of $250k. Thus, I turned in "The Commander's Cabinet" and "Nectar Emergency" with eight and seven bottles of ridiculously expensive Nectar in week 12; those 2 actually contributed the bulk of my score.”

“I seemed to have some bugs with opportunities not paying me (mainly the sculpting ones, giving me $0 and relationship increases); that's why Sims 1 and 2 ended up having to count celeb ops worth only a small amount.”

“As an afterthought, I'm quite sure a score upwards of 20 million is possible. I turned in many opportunities earlier (to give me a greater chance of landing all that I needed) than necessary, and also didn't pursue the lucrative trade of fishing at all, wasting spaces on two of my Sims, so I think 20M is certainly achievable. Below is the complete list of my ops...”

Sim 1:
"Your Best Work" - 53,932 (1 Masterpiece sculpture)
"Sculpt a Suspect" - 5,000 (Sculpting)
"Business Model" - 10,000 (Celebrity)
"Nectar Emergency" - 6,745,916 (7 Nectar bottles - Law Enforcement career)

Sim 2:
"Sculpture for a Friend" - 46,936 (1 sculpture)
"Broadway Cameo" - 10,000 (Celebrity)
"The Commander's Cabinet" - 8,223,064 (8 Nectar bottles - military career)
"Delivering the Green" - 246,284 (6 Topiaries - sculpting)

Sim 3:
"A Large Painting" - 37,272 (1 large painting)
"Popular Painter" - 35,240 (1 painting)
"Interior Decor" - 34,240 (1 painting)
"What Is This... Tiberium?" - 135,998 (1 tiberium - science career)

Sim 4:
"Deliver a Painting to China" - 31,432 (1 painting)
"The Study Of Art" - 40,248 (1 painting)
"The Business of Decor" - 385,320 (10 paintings)
"Painting the Town" - 627,184 (15 paintings)


Fantastic job, Jeremy. Congratulations on your induction into the Challenge Hall of Fame!

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Re: Sims 3 Challenge Hall of Fame
« Reply #9 on: February 01, 2012, 11:09:16 AM »
2012 Tournament

World Handyman Champions, January 29
Participants: 85
Champion: Chuckles_82

The 2012 Sims 3 Tournament season kicked off with the World Handyman Championships. This final rendition of the popular challenge concept added a new scoring element — % of unique upgrades. A huge field of 85 participants broke out their wrenches and hammers and did battle. And a new champ rose to the top. Chuckles_82 is a 29-year-old player from Australia, married with 2 kids, and one on the way. She has been playing the Sims franchise since the first game was released.

“As soon as the new challenges were released I was so excited and just had to start practicing. And practicing. I practiced a LOT. I'm a perfectionist, so whenever I felt that my Sim had wasted too much time, or I missed something, I'd start over until I had a list of everything I needed to do and not do. I also needed to get this challenge out of the way quickly because we were in the middle of moving house. I knew when I saw other people reaching close to my score that they had to have latched onto my strategy, so I held my breath every time I saw a post!”

“My Sim was Ambitious and Adventurous (and of course Handy). She joined the firefighter career, and quit sometime after level 5. I used a number of wishes related to the career to get as many LTH points.”

“My first purchase was the Motive Mobile, then prepared traveller and opportunistic. After that, I took a 6-day vacation to France, and had Level 3 visa and Partnership in less than 3 days, followed by two 18-day vacations of nearly nothing but upgrades. Amongst a few others, doorbells were the fastest upgrades - and unlike others weren't dangerous and didn't require me to continually buy and replace them. I could queue up four or five doorbell changes, then jump in my motive mobile, and then rinse and repeat.”
“Whilst in Sunset Valley, I checked the junkyard EVERY day until the fortune cookie machine turned up. I salvaged it, then replaced it for X amount in order to upgrade it. This meant that I didn't need to go to China and had that very valuable extra 18 days in France.” 

“I kept my Sim's mood meter maxed as much as possilbe. If my Sim had a negative moodlet, but the mood meter didn't drop, then I didn't worry about it, and just kept on hammering. I used to find that hard to ignore, but once you've tried an apocalypse challenge, you can let your sims live with just about anything. I spent a little bit of wasted time fulfilling wishes to get the teleporter, when really I could have focused on just upgrades and got a higher final score, but I guess I can't complain!”

Great job, Chuckles! Looking in the junkyard for the Fortune Cookie machine was quite creative. Welcome to the Hall of Fame!

Career Caps and New Digs, February 26
Participants: 50
Champion: drift9999

The first Major of the 2012 season combined the tried and true concepts of maxing as many careers as you can with living in as many expensive houses as you can. So, it was a lot of fun and a serious test to all participants. After proving he had serious chop by winning last year's Finale, Jeremy (drift9999) soared to the top of this challenge with a really amazing score. Rather than post the entire interview here, Jeremy was kind enough to duplicate what he sent me, and actually included additional material in this challenge thread post.

Great job, drift!

The Trophy Room — The Most Rewarding Sims Challenge Yet, March 25
Participants: 34
Champion: drift9999

With so many different kind of physical, placeable rewards in the game, I felt a no-brainer concept would simply be to have one household collect as many unique rewards as possible in 30 days. drift9999 proved he is unquestionably the man to beat this Tournament season and scored the championship making his last two performances back to back wins. Very impressive. As with the Career Caps info above, drift laid out in incredible detail everything that he did in this post of the Trophy Room thread.

You're on a roll, drift. Keep up the great work. :)

Sunset Valley: Attack of the Clones! April 22
Participants: 46
Champions: Nutella and ClayMask

This one was quite different to say the least. First, you needed to set up Sunset Valley so all empty lots had a home placed on them via Edit Town. Then you had to buy and upgrade all properties and businesses — only by doing so were you able to accomplish the ultimate goal of moving out clones (purchased via vouchers) of your 4 starting Sims. It was a challenge with no time limit and I was not surprised that some players simply were not able to finish. It was pretty brutal if certain tricks were not employed.

When all was said and done a new champion to the Tournament emerged, Nutella. But, not to be outdone, ClayMask decided to throw her hat in the ring for the first time this season and matched Nutella’s score of 13 days. So, for the first time in the history of the forum’s Tournaments — there was 2 Champions. Well done to both of you. Here are links to Nutella’s strategy as well as ClayMask’s strategy in the challenge thread.

Online Metropolis Man

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Re: Sims 3 Challenge Hall of Fame
« Reply #10 on: May 22, 2012, 10:19:25 AM »
Teacher Tourist Trap, May 20
Participants: 46
Champion: Chuckles_82

46 players decided to put the “friendly” in family friendly on hold and just have some good old fun with this bizarre twist on the perennial Baby Boomer theme of having max kids. In this one players needed to make sure their teacher in the Education career never got fired and at the same time try and get as many Tourists pregnant as possible. You’ve heard people rationalize their actions/behaviors with “Hey, it’s for the children” right? Well, in this challenge, it truly was for the children.

Chuckles_82 turned in a phenomenal performance with 573 children. With that many kids it probably took her more time to actually to count all the offspring listed in the Family Tree bar than it took to actually do the challenge! Lol. Pretty incredible. Great job, Chuckles. You can read her detailed strategy in this post in the challenge thread.

Final Wishmasters Challenge: Wish Big! June 17
Participants: 21
Champion: Nutella

The Wishmasters events have always been a player favorite. Traditionally they have had a big random element to them, but this year a format change was made for added variety and the focus was simply completing as many Lifetime Wishes and 5k+ Happiness point wishes as possible. It ended up being a much tougher event because players needed to juggle a full household. In the end, Nutella stepped up again and earned a 2nd championship title this season. Here is Nutella's post detailing everything you need to know. There are some really cool tricks I certainly never thought about.

The Life States Challenge July 15
Participants: 12
Champion: Nutella

This was a race type of event where players needed to obtain 10 different life states all under one roof as quickly as possible. The participation was little low — possibly because it required all expansions.

Nutella stepped up to the plate and hit another one out of the park. She PM'd me her complete strategy after I PM'd her basically saying "how the heck did you do it so fast?" Lol. Here's the scoop.

Consignment Store Quartet — the Great 28, August 12
Participants: 15
Champion: drift9999

Drift continues to make it exceedingly difficult for others to steal away his lock on first place in the world ranking by turning in his 3rd win this season. Lots and lots of great detail in this strategy post in the challenge thread. Grats, drift!

Bringing Out Your Animal Instincts, September 9
Participants: 8
Champions: Chuckles_82 & LenaLJ

This one was all about the Pets expansion content — in fact this challenge covered ALL the pets expansion content! The goal was simple — a race to see who could have their household complete all the Pets' Lifetime Wishes as well as purchase all the Pets' Lifetime Happiness Rewards, max the Horseman Career, and finally bring a Unicorn into the household.

The usual heavy hitters rose to the top with Chuckles_82 and LenaLJ finishing on the same day to earn a tie for the win. You can read their strategies in the challenge thread starting here.

Setting the Stage for Maximum Moodlets, October 7
Participants: 6
Champions: drift9999

This is a unique event that I have done before — have players attempt to get as many good moodlets in all 6 different life stages. Plus, there can be no duplicates of moodlets as far as scoring goes. Lots and lots of planning to really score well as the champion, drift9999, explains here. Unquestionably one of the toughest events of the season. Hahaha...maybe too tough given the number of players who actually carded a score.

Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous, November 4
Participants: 26
Champions: Chuckles_82

This was a brand new event based on the Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous Lifetime Wish. The goal was pretty simple: finish the LTW as quickly as possible. The trickiest part of the challenge (and admittedly the luck factor) was you were restricted to only 2 forms of income: Celebrity Opportunities and selling off freebies received for being a celebrity. So, someone that got freebies like a Bwan Speedster was inevitably going to finish the challenge much more quickly than a player who was given only cheaper items like TVs. But, that's okay...nothing wrong with having one challenge where luck is a factor. And as it turned out there is still plenty of skill and good choices needed to be made in this event given the fact that the typical heavy hitters ended up at the top of the leaderboard anyway...Chuckles_82 really put the pedal to the metal and won by a significant margin—not an easy thing to do with the likes of Lena and drift breathing down your back. Check out her little write up including some key tips in this post. Well done, Chuckles! It was great to see a nice large field (26 players) for this event.

Online Metropolis Man

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Re: Sims 3 Challenge Hall of Fame
« Reply #11 on: February 04, 2013, 09:44:02 AM »
2013 Tournament

World Handyman Champions II, February 3
Participants: 88
Champion: SimBlip

This year's Tournament kicked off with the sounds of hammering and upgrade chimes ringing in everyone's ears. Identical to last year's event this year's rendition saw even more participation, 88 players! A new champion rose to the top, SimBlip. Congrats! One of the big keys in getting so many upgrades turned out to be choosing umbrellas. Players shared their strategies in the challenge thread after this post.

Baby Boomer IV: Family Tree Explosion, March 3
Participants: 72
Champion: LenaLJ

Wow was this year's Baby Boomer much micromanaging! Congrats to LenaLJ for coming out on top when all was said and done and posting the most fertile score. Hehe. Players shared their strategies in the challenge thread after this post.

Gnome is Where the Heart Is, March 31
Participants: 43
Champion: drift9999

A new kind of event involving two totally different goals — acquiring different Romantic Interests and then giving them unique gnomes and kicking them out of your household. Last year's overall champion, drift9999, proved he is still a serious threat and bagged his first win of this season. A few other players got more gnomes but drift got his gnomes very quickly and he knew when to call it quits since time actually worked against one's score. Great job drift. Check out player strategies after this post.

Thanks for the Memories, April 28
Participants: 33
Champion: Ricalynn

Another brand new event involving the Scrapbook/Memory system in the game. Players started with a Young Adult and then were allowed to bring in a baby and a pet—all 3 household members were scored on their total Unique Memories stat. When all was said and done, Ricalynn scored her first win in 3 years of Tournament participation by besting the 33 player field. Grats, Rica! Check out player strategies after this post.

Oh Snap — the Photography Challenge is Back, May 26
Participants: 24
Champion: Nutella

A carbon copy of the previous photography challenge, this event has players trying to make as much money in photography as possible but the catch is they could only take 250 pictures. Completing as many of the various collections added to one’s score so there was plenty of strategy involved. Grats to Nutella who came out on top and barely squeaked by SimBlip. Check out player strategies after this post.

Take This Job and Score It, June 23
Participants: 33
Champions: Nutella and LenaLJ

Any kind of career/job event is always a hit with players and this one was a variation on the Peter and Jack’s Rabbit-Hole Adventures Challenge from a couple years ago. This time around your Sims could max any type of the 4 jobs: Rabbit-hole, Self-Employment, Profession, and even Part-time. There have been very few ties for the championship in the past, but given how crazy good Nutella and LenaLJ are it’s no surprise that both of them have been involved in a tie before. Grats to both of you. Check out all the strategy talk for this event after this post.

Metro’s Haven—Yes You Can! July 21
Participants: 23
Champion: SimBlip

Rica and I sat down and had the idea to create a couple skilling events running in tandem that were polar opposites of each other...a yin and a yang so to speak. Mine was the easy one with very few restrictions. SimBlip took top honors in this event beating out the tough LenaLJ by completing more skill challenges than anyone else. Great job, SimBlip! Check out player strategies after this post.

Rica’s Asylum—Oh, No You Don’t, August 18
Participants: 24
Champions: LenaLJ

Rica’s event was the meat grinder of the 2 skilling events and I’m quite certain she rubbed her hands in glee and did evil laughs as she wrote restriction after restriction into the ruleset. LenaLJ got her revenge from a close loss in my event. She was only one of two players to cap 23 skills. Check out all the strategy talk for this event after this post.

We’re Coming to Collect, September 15
Participants: 29
Champion: LenaLJ

Another feather in the cap for LenaLJ in this popular annual collecting event. You can read all about how players tackled this event after this post.

Wishmasters Final Wish: All Elders...All the Time, October 13
Participants: 13
Champion: SimBlip

This year’s variation on Wishmaster’s was harder because players needed to start with Elders in their household with no life extension allowed. So, the clock was constantly ticking as players tried to have their Sims complete wishes before Grim came knocking hehe. SimBlip is credited as the winner of this event although it came out in the next event (Thank You for Your Service) that she broke rules and was banned from the forum. You can read about everyone’s strategies after this post.

Thank You for Your Service, November 10
Participants: 35
Champions: Nutella and LenaLJ

The first three events of this season saw really good participation, but then things slowed down over time. Then came this event which was the creation of challenge team member Blackrosea. This was a really unique event involving a military family moving to 4 separate worlds with the military Sim and the stay at home Sim being crippled with horrible traits. Players loved it because of the difficulty and the participation numbers showed that fact. When all was said and done Nutella and LenaLJ both accomplished everything that needed to be done in 30 days to tie for the win. SimBlip was originally credited for the win, but information came out shortly after to change that fact. You can read up on strategy talk after this post.
2013 Tournament Finale: the 4X4 Golden Opportunity, December 8
Participants: 14
Champion: Nutella

Admittedly, this event which was a copy of the Finale from two years ago had a moderate amount of luck involved — if you did not get those all important phone calls to give you high paying opportunities, then your score would not be that great. But, assuming you picked the right skills to at least give yourself the chance to get those phone calls, then it was a fun event to wrap up the 2013 season. Nutella did a great job and won by a pretty significant margin. Read all about what players did after this post.

Online Metropolis Man

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Re: Sims 3 Challenge Hall of Fame
« Reply #12 on: January 22, 2014, 07:15:45 PM »
2014 Tournament

The Royal Flush: Sunset Valley’s Handyman Champions, January 15
Participants: 69
Champion: Elena

The final Sims 3 Challenge Tournament season kicked off with the popular handiness event. Players broke out their wrenches and screwdrivers and upgraded as much of Sunset Valley as they could before the allowed two weeks was up. A new champion rose to the top, Elena. Players shared their strategies in the challenge thread after this post. Don't miss Elena's blog where she details her strategy in the form of an interview—very creative!

The Perfect Challenge, January 31
Participants: 60
Champions: Nutella and LenaLJ

January's longer event saw players frantically planting, cooking, and fishing in order to obtain as many perfect plants, fish, and recipes by the end of four weeks. Nutella and LenaLJ ended up tied for the win. This is the third time these two tough competitors have ended up sharing the spotlight. Grats to you both. Players shared their strategies in the challenge thread after this post.

The Return of Max Moodlets, February 15
Participants: 25
Champions: Femke82

February's short event saw the return of the moodlet challenge. This rendition was a bit easier and was only two Sim weeks in length and involved taking two snapshots of your Sims. But, there was still plenty of strategy involved in getting as many good mood lets as possible in such a short time period. Femke82 started playing the forum challenges at the beginning of 2013 but had never won an event, so hats off to Femke82 for winning the Max Moodlets Challenge. Femke82 was one of only three players to get over 1000 points for an individual snapshot. Players shared their strategies in the challenge thread after this post.

Baby Boomer V: Location, Location, Location, February 28
Participants: 56
Champion: Nutella

It's kind of sad to see the last Baby Boomer event for Sims 3 come and go. I think a lot of players wanted to jump in this one with that in mind — lots of sentimental feelings for this event. For this final Baby Boomer I had the location where mom gets pregnant as a multiplier, so players bounced around town for different places and purchased various types of objects (haystack, treehouse, etc) for their home lot to ramp up their score. In the end, Nutella continued to prove she is one of the best players in the world by besting the large 56-player field and being the only player to claim an amazing 19 kids. Well done! You can check out everyone's strategy for Baby Boomer after this post.

Grandmaster Challenge II: Bishop Takes Another Head Kick! March 15
Participants: 30
Champion: Chare

This was a speed run type of event where players tried to obtain the Grandmaster title in chess and the martial arts tournament as quickly as possible. Chare has turned in solid performances in the Perfect Challenge, the Moodlets event, as well as the Baby Boomer event, and finally with the Grandmaster event she threw down the gauntlet and let all top players know she is for real. Good job, Chare. Grats on your first win. You can check out everyone's thoughts on this event after this post.

A Bunch of Jobs and Rewards, March 31
Participants: 18
Champion: Chare

A new variation on our annual jobs/career type of event — players needed to play Sunset Valley's Bunch family and have them cap as many jobs as possible while seeking those all important career rewards for adding to the multiplier. Participation was a little low this time around, but that is not to take away from the great performance of Chare who topped the 18-player field. Having won the Grandmaster event only two weeks earlier, Chare now joins the small, elite back-to-back club of Sims 3 champions. Players shared their strategies after this post. Incidentally, Ghostmira participated in this event, but the challenge team later decided to remove her from the leaderboard.

Ghost Hunter Bingo II: Let the Spirit Move You, April 15
Participants: 41
Champion: Blackrosea

We brought back the Ghost Hunter event from two years ago and it was a big hit — 41 players participated and many said when they posted their score how much fun they had. It is such a different kind of event complete with playing bingo (thanks Pam for the design of the scorecards). The challenge team's own Blackrosea has been participating in events for two years, but has never won an event, so it was high time for her moment in the sun. Great job, Blackrosea! Check out lots of great strategy from players after this post.

A Portrait of My Hometown, April 30
Participants: 46
Champion: LenaLJ

This was a brand new event courtesy of MarianT and judging by the participation I think lots of players enjoyed it. As the name suggests, the month long event revolved around painting portraits — doing as many different ones as you could, plus holding onto the 10 most valuable ones to sell at the end. It was lots of fun and current World Champion, LenaLJ, barely edged out Nutella for the win. You can check out everyone's approach to this event after this post.