“Your black widow isn’t allowed to get a job, so marrying money is key.”
February 8, 2019 10:41 AM   Subscribe

Watch Me Try To Kill Ten Husbands In The Sims 4 [YouTube] “The Black Widow Challenge was created by the simmer Simalot, and the rules are simple. You make a Sim with the Snob, Materialistic, and Romantic traits, find them a would-be husband, marry that guy, and then kill them. Then you do it again, and again, until you’ve killed ten husbands. There are a few other rules and a complex scoring system, but that’s the gist.” [via: Kotaku]
posted by Fizz (45 comments total) 27 users marked this as a favorite
 
Well I know what I'm doing this weekend. Only he'll be the gay version of it because I make all my sims gay.
posted by msbutah at 11:07 AM on February 8 [17 favorites]


I wonder why I find this a bit creepy, while I have no issues with personally gunning down thousands of people in the latest shooter game.
posted by ymgve at 11:08 AM on February 8 [6 favorites]


I wonder why I find this a bit creepy, while I have no issues with personally gunning down thousands of people in the latest shooter game.

Is it the gendered part? Personally black widows are my most favourite types of MER-DERRS
posted by Dressed to Kill at 11:12 AM on February 8 [24 favorites]


I have not yet played The Sims 4, but my previous experience playing other versions of The Sims has prepared me greatly for this.

Personally black widows are my most favourite types of MER-DERRS
posted by Dressed to Kill at 1:12 PM on February 8 [+] [!]


Oh come on
posted by MCMikeNamara at 11:14 AM on February 8 [44 favorites]


now I want to play the Sims for the first time in my life...
posted by supermedusa at 11:28 AM on February 8 [3 favorites]


There's a long history of Sims meta-challenges. Two of my favorites are the asylum challenge, where you fill a household to maximum occupancy but can only control a single character, and "uglacies" where you try to breed the weirdest result of Sim2 genetics over 10 generations.
posted by GenderNullPointerException at 11:30 AM on February 8 [4 favorites]


I haven't played 2, 3, or 4, but I did dearly love trapping Sims in box hedges in 1. Then the hedges would be right there for their tombstone or urn.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 11:31 AM on February 8 [4 favorites]


I think my favorite I've attempted in the past was a Legacy challenge, where you start with a cabin and don't have any money, and even self constrain to build objects only available back in the 1900s or something. And try to build and pass things along to up to 10 generations of sim.
posted by msbutah at 11:42 AM on February 8 [6 favorites]


I wonder why I find this a bit creepy, while I have no issues with personally gunning down thousands of people in the latest shooter game.

The Sims as a series is deliberately designed to enable players to ascribe internal mental states and create narratives/character arcs that are not precisely represented in the game, but rather a byproduct of the user's imagination assisted by the gameplay mechanics where possible. These aren't just characters you've grown close to by time and shared experience (ie Mass Effect), but people and stories that you've effectively created within your head. Games like the Sims are essentially a prostheses for the human compulsion to anthropomorphize everything (faces in clouds, talking animals in fiction, etc.). See also: Rimworld, Dwarf Fortress, and similar.

In FPS games we generally design the faceless hordes to be faceless hordes in order to allow the player to achieve the catharsis of victory in combat with a minimum of guilt or cognitive dissonance, unless the latter two are explicit design goals. Ie Bioshock: rich assholes who genetically engineered themselves into mindless zombies, Bioshock Infinite: sky racists on an overtly white supremacist Edwardian Death Star. To the limited extent that you glimpse the inner lives of the people you're killing, it's rarely exculpatory.

That you feel this way means we did our jobs and you're not exhibiting sociopathic tendencies. Hooray for us both!
posted by Ryvar at 11:54 AM on February 8 [33 favorites]


OMG a Sims post!!! This is timely because I recently acquired the Sims 2 thanks to a post on the Blue about Puritan names - I could not resist the urge to create Sims with some of those names. I had forgotten about the asylum challenge. asfkjsdlkgjsdklgjdrklf

I think the appeal of doing challenges like that, or the early years of the Legacy challenge (raise 10 generations, start out with very little money, you have to randomize your Sims' aspirations and various other things - jinx, msbutah!) is that after a while you get pretty good at keeping your Sims happy, and you get into a groove of playing the game in a particular way, and these challenges shake you out of that a bit and make it a lot harder to keep your Sims from fighting each other or taking sponge baths in the sink and all that good stuff. And they can do some hilarious things when unattended. Sims also generate different colored ghosts depending on how they died, and part of the original Legacy challenge was trying to get one of each type of ghost. (Actually, the ghosts are angry and disruptive, especially when their former lover starts seeing someone new, so wouldn't that make the Black Widow challenge really tough? I've never tried it.)

Speaking of my Puritan sims, Praise-God and Handmaid are now about to enter their golden years. Handmaid has the Romance aspiration, which is somewhat of a misnomer because it basically means they just want to bone down all the time. I decided to randomize their kids' aspirations for a bit of fun, but they have three daughters and two of them also have the Romance aspiration and OMG. Sims are jealous creatures, and Joy-in-Sorrow flirted with Silence's beau and now everyone in the household hates each other except for Dust, the youngest daughter who is mostly into training her dog. No one is allowed to have jobs so they sell handcrafted toys for a living.

I love this stupid game
posted by sunset in snow country at 11:56 AM on February 8 [49 favorites]


my sims are always as bad at time management as i myself am so i'm constantly having to install 4 outdoor bathrooms so i don't end up with a family of 5 crying themselves to death because they keep wetting their pants

i don't think i'd be good at this challenge
posted by poffin boffin at 11:59 AM on February 8 [23 favorites]


yeah...this is kinda fucked up. But video games make good heat sinks for antisocial tendencies. I killed a lot of zombies while iddqd'ing DOOM, and I now want to repeal the 2nd amendment-etc. Let your shit go, kids! Into the pixels!

I still think that people who kill leviathans in Subnautica are sociopaths. And I'll never reconsider that view.
posted by es_de_bah at 12:12 PM on February 8 [1 favorite]


So is there a minigame where my Sim files her nails while they're dragging the lake?
posted by happyroach at 12:29 PM on February 8 [44 favorites]


YES! The best time I had with sims 2 was my murder house. I made my sim, set her up in this prefab house. Then, I skipped getting a job in favor of slowly getting rich by befriending/romancing the sims generated by the game*, inviting them to move in, and then taking whatever they had in their pockets . Sometimes a pretty good aspiration reward , sometimes nothing. Any Simoleons they had went into your household total. Again, sometimes nothing, usually something middling, but occasionally you'd hit the *jackpot*.

Then, first time they go onto the upstairs balcony, I'd take the door off and leave 'em to pee/die. For extra flavor, I used the creativity skill to have my sim do portraits of the trapped roommate, and used these to decorate the house. No potential roommate was scared off by these, so *shrug*, carry on with your murder spree, Beezus McNuggett - they'll stop coming when they want to stop getting murdered!

Bonus points, use the accumulated tombstones to make a community lot. Bonus bonus - if you had the "Downtown" expansion - add lots of snazzy club lights and flame-blaster-things to this lot.

*missin' u, Goopy GilsCarbo, you were my secret fave, I almost wanted to keep you
posted by Ennis Tennyone at 12:30 PM on February 8 [36 favorites]


OMG, Sims stories crack me up every time.

Unfortunately, the December Windows 10 update borked my PC such that Sims 2 doesn't load anymore, not recognizing the operating system as valid (it is a 15 year old game?). *sad face* Trying to explain that to my 5yo who just wanted Sims Pets and to battle with me by him being the water landscape tool and me being the grass landscape tool... He would give his Sims the Romantic aspiration, too, thinking they would love each other. He didn't get far enough playing (there is unexpectedly more reading requirements than I expected) to get to the awkward stages of any of his Sims acting out the Romantic/hornball aspirations.

Thankfully at the end of December, as I mourned our now defunct pile of Sims 2 CD cases, I found Steam had a good sale on Sims 3 (? maybe?) where I got ALL add-on packages plus the game for under $100. I have not had the time to play much with it yet. But the 5yo did make a family full of cats and dogs and babies and moms and dads.

I am a people pleaser, so any challenge that makes Sims unhappy are STRESSFUL for me. Just watching the 5yo try to play Sims is STRESSFUL. "Let Mama install a fridge and hire a maid and order pizza for you, baby, please."
posted by jillithd at 12:34 PM on February 8 [8 favorites]


Metafilter: they'll stop coming when they want to stop getting murdered!
posted by The Underpants Monster at 12:43 PM on February 8 [11 favorites]


haha Ennis Tennyone, that was the same house I used for my single guy who kept getting abducted by aliens and eventually gave birth to 3 alien children. Also Beezus McNuggett is a fantastic Sim name.
posted by sunset in snow country at 12:51 PM on February 8 [3 favorites]


Oh, all this reminds me of the craziest thing I did of my own volition (most of my out-of-the-box Simming came from internet challenges), back in Sims 1 days: I made a house with 8 Sims, kept them in little pens until they were unhappy enough to fight randos, and then had a fighting championship. I actually made more pens arranged into championship brackets and moved them around so I could keep track of who won each round. Then when they were done (the winner was a lady in a pink dress, with an anime skin I had downloaded) I let them all out and had a dance party. Ah, good times.
posted by sunset in snow country at 12:55 PM on February 8 [17 favorites]


How do you overcome that point around the five minute mark where you become cripplingly aware that you are instructing your Sim to do household chores you yourself have been putting off for weeks?
posted by Freelance Demiurge at 12:56 PM on February 8 [47 favorites]


My wife had a close friend who became less due to the different way they raised their children.

The very first thing my wife did with Sims was make a family as similar as possible to her former close friend. The second thing she did was make a family that resembled ours.

The grin on her faced lasted for weeks after watching ours succeed and the friend's fall apart.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:58 PM on February 8 [21 favorites]


No double indemnity clause?
posted by clavdivs at 1:00 PM on February 8 [2 favorites]


Rather do this one than the 100 Baby Challenge.
posted by wellifyouinsist at 1:07 PM on February 8


Psh, I did this years ago playing the Sims 1/2. My Sim had a little husband cemetery out back. What can I say? Teenage girls are dark.
posted by noxperpetua at 1:19 PM on February 8 [3 favorites]


How do you overcome that point around the five minute mark where you become cripplingly aware that you are instructing your Sim to do household chores you yourself have been putting off for weeks?

By doing stuff like this?
posted by Ennis Tennyone at 1:20 PM on February 8 [2 favorites]


Another good time was (Sims 2) making the house too big for them to get to their ride to work when it showed up.
posted by Ennis Tennyone at 1:34 PM on February 8 [6 favorites]


Rather do this one than the 100 Baby Challenge.

For those wondering what this is, here is a bit more information. [Kotaku]
“In this challenge, you try to have 100 children in as few generations as possible. All the children must come from a different father, and once the Sim you’ve designated as the matriarch passes childbearing age, you must select an heiress to continue the challenge. Since households in The Sims 4 can only hold eight Sims, you can move children out once they become Young Adults, but they can’t be moved back in after. There are many more detailed rules in this fan-made Google document, mostly concerning the cheats that aren’t allowed. You can’t artificially lengthen your matriarch’s lifespan or cheat to get around household size.”
posted by Fizz at 1:38 PM on February 8 [1 favorite]


SimDuggar wasn't the most popular spin-off.
posted by delfin at 1:40 PM on February 8 [3 favorites]


If you want to build a proper haunted cemetery, sometimes you have to break some eggs.
posted by Selena777 at 1:43 PM on February 8 [4 favorites]


If you want to build a proper haunted cemetery, sometimes you have to break some eggs.

There are a lot of good vegan egg substitutes. You can whip up a great cursed mausoleum with a mashed banana or two, for example
posted by Rinku at 1:52 PM on February 8 [2 favorites]


I once made a murder house in the sims (I think 2 or 3) because I wanted a haunted house, without realising that the pre-made sims don't respawn or randomly generate. Almost everyone in the town was dead, and downtown was completely empty. It was a bit creepy, a proper ghost town.
posted by stillnocturnal at 1:53 PM on February 8 [1 favorite]


I once made a murder house in the sims

I think everyone does this at least once or twice when they first purchase/play the game. There's a power in playing a God-like figure and wielding your power in such a destructive way.
posted by Fizz at 2:09 PM on February 8


I wonder why I find this a bit creepy, while I have no issues with personally gunning down thousands of people in the latest shooter game.

Everything about the Sims gets murder-y and creepy very fast in my experience.
posted by fshgrl at 2:10 PM on February 8


My sims goals usually involved filling taking over the neighborhood with descendents of aliens.
posted by GenderNullPointerException at 2:15 PM on February 8 [1 favorite]


Devil in the White Sim City
posted by Atom Eyes at 3:31 PM on February 8 [5 favorites]


I'm an opulent studmuffin. Somebody Kill Me!
posted by CynicalKnight at 4:06 PM on February 8 [1 favorite]


This is delicious.

Related: Giant Bomb did a vaguely similar thing (while also not being similar at all): they made Sims for all the people on staff, put their names in a bowl along with methods of murder, and drew one of each at a time. They then had to find a way to murder that person's Sim using that method. Rinse and repeat until all thirteen of them are dead.
posted by chrominance at 4:47 PM on February 8 [2 favorites]


I remember when I was heavily pregnant and no longer working in the week before my due date, I compulsively played the Sims and focused on raising the perfect Sim child.

In Sims 2 on, you can build skill points that carry into adulthood... and I think if you are in a good enough mood when you age up, you get extra positive personality traits or something like that? I made it a harsh personal challenge though, with a single parent and no cheats for more money or more time. After three days, I made it happen! 100% full on all possible skills, with the maximum number of positive personality traits. Fast forward a year and a half and I just gave my real life toddler son both french fries and cookies for dinner while I drank a beer.

Was I channeling my anxiety or increasing it? I’m not sure. I also (correctly) figured that once he’s born, I’ll never have time to play The Sims again...
posted by sometamegazelle at 4:57 PM on February 8 [7 favorites]


And here I thought it was bad when we tried to do something like this by playing with the hardest difficulty settings on Oregon Trail and then playing MASH with a bunch of guy characters and you see who's left at the end and that's the one you marry. After a while you look for ways to liven up Oregon Trail besides the shooting and the rafting, is all I can say.

That said, this seems like a long-ass challenge and do the SimCops ever notice this is happening?
posted by jenfullmoon at 6:23 PM on February 8 [2 favorites]


I think one of the weirdest things that happened when I was playing Sims 4, was having one of my Sims manage to become BFF with the Grim Reaper!

My Sim was visiting someone else's house with a semi-indoor pool arrangement, and when some elder Sim died while swimming, Grim appeared, but then got "stuck" in a corner of the weird-shaped pool area. Always one to take advantage of unusual opportunities, I had my Sim try to speak to Grim, which turned into a lengthy conversation, and eventually after much discussion, friendship!

As my game progressed, whenever Sims would pass away and others would be grieving, old Grim and I would be chatting away, making jokes and having a good time before he'd finally have to leave.
posted by Jade Dragon at 7:05 PM on February 8 [15 favorites]


I hope none of you who are cruel to Sims get stuck in Westworld.
posted by emkelley at 7:50 PM on February 8 [1 favorite]


All I know about The Sims these days is how frustrated my daughter got when she created a wonderful household full of happy people, and then one of them died laughing.
posted by davejay at 8:03 PM on February 8 [3 favorites]


Sims 1 - 3 were good providers of feelings-of-accomplishment for me when ill health meant I couldn’t accomplish much outside the virtual world. Asylum Challenge was great! Never finished an alphabet or legacy challenge, though. Because I had my priorities. Everytime I felt the least bit better, I stepped away from the games. Battled through: raised my son, managed my creative work, staying away from the video games. Little financial reward for years of work, but the satisfaction counts, right?

But it feels weird to see young people making a living doing speedbuilds of Sim houses on youtube.

(Is this where I say, “I cudda been a contendeh!”?)

For real, though: community generated challenges are what kept the game vital. And now I’m considering not getting rid of the old computer I pulled from storage, because it’s Windows 7 and will still run The Sims 2.
posted by Nancy_LockIsLit_Palmer at 8:24 PM on February 8 [6 favorites]


TV announcer: "...but soon, the money runs out..."
Debbie: looks at handful of small bills and some change on the bedside table, nods earnestly at television.
posted by sexyrobot at 11:04 PM on February 8


I was into the Sims in the first iteration. There was tonnes of user generated content, a lot of it vaguely "adult" or at least non-corporate. I had My neighborhood filled with the three catholic schoolgirl room mates, Idi Amin, Ummm'mgaak the Yeti / Wookie type thing... man that was good shit!

Can you still get user generated sims stuff, or is it all a walled in garden now?
posted by Meatbomb at 9:33 AM on February 9 [1 favorite]


Can you still get user generated sims stuff, or is it all a walled in garden now?

From what I have gleaned, there's a big modding community, so it looks like there's a lot more to the game than just the basic install.
posted by Fizz at 4:41 PM on February 9


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