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#1 Old 16th Nov 2015 at 8:21 PM Last edited by Aislynne : 13th Dec 2015 at 8:34 PM.
Default The Sims 4 Christmas Challenge
Welcome to the Sims 4 Christmas challenge!

You live in the little town of Willow Creek, which has always hosted an annual Christmas festival. To your unpleasant surprise, you hear that the town council has decided to cancel the Christmas festival this year. Last year’s festival was a complete fiasco: the initial budget was small because people and companies weren’t interested in donating money for some reason, which made it difficult to find willing performers and musicians and to organize other events, and because of that, very few people visited the festival. There was also some vandalism and a most horrible thing happened: some rascal cut off and stole Santa Claus’s beard!

In short, the Christmas spirit was nowhere to be found. You are upset. The annual festival has always been important both to you and to the children of your town. What would Christmas be like without the festival? You feel that it’s not ok to give in to vandalism and greed and cynicism at Christmas, and so you decide to do something.

But what can you do? A lot, fortunately, but there isn’t very much time. Four weeks, actually. Will you be able to save the festival or will there be a lot of disappointed little children in Willow Creek this year?


RULES

The challenge lasts four sims weeks. It can be completed before Christmas, because I will publish the instructions and tasks for the second, third and fourth week here on Sundays before Christmas (on the 29th of November, the 6th of December and the 13th of December). I’m doing this so that it’s not possible to plan ahead. But don’t worry if you can’t do this challenge now - you can naturally do it any time you want, the instructions will remain here.

Setting up
-Create a sim. You can freely choose his / her traits and aspiration. Tip: create a sim that you think would be good at spreading Christmas cheer.
-Move your sim into a house in Willow Creek. You may alternatively build one yourself. You may use the cheat code “motherlode” twice so that your sim can have a nice house.
-Read the instructions for the first week and start playing. Have fun!


WEEK 1 - In search of the Christmas spirit


You contact the town council and ask them not to cancel the festival. They turn you down. “It just isn’t worth it,” they say. “Have you looked around? People are gloomy and indifferent. A Christmas festival would be a sad event unless the atmosphere in this town changed first. Most people don’t care about anyone else but themselves, and those who might care, are too depressed to do so.”

Your job is to prove the town council wrong. Go spread good cheer! Go lead by example!

Tasks: You’ll need to tell jokes and perform comedy routines to raise people’s spirits, calm down angry people and cheer up sad people. In addition, help old people and families that have little children so that townies notice that not all people are completely selfish: go visit them and cook meals, plant vegetables, help children with homework, upgrade and repair their appliances and so on. If you don't have many families with children or old people living in Willow Creek, you may edit the town.

Points to be calculated when the first week is over:
-Comedy skill points (maximum: 10 points)
-Tasks performed in order to help elders and families with children (maximum: 10 points; one task = one point)
-Angry people successfully calmed down by using the "Try to calm down" interaction (maximum: 10 points; one person = one point)
-Sad people successfully cheered up by using the "Try to cheer up" interaction (maximum: 10 points; one person = one point)

Goal: You are successful if you get at least 15 points. If you did, congratulations! Get ready for next week’s challenge.


WEEK 2

(Don't read if you haven't completed week 1 yet!)

“Yes, that is a pleasant surprise,” says the head of the town council looking anything but pleasantly surprised when you visit him to tell him what you’ve just accomplished. Is that a glint of irritation that you can see in his eyes? “Yes, I think you’ve proven that there is some festive spirit left in this town, after all. That is great. No reason to cancel the festival now. None at all...”

You smile at him happily. You did it! You were able to accomplish something great, something bigger than yourself! But then he continues speaking.

“Ahem. Except… There is this tiny problem. Yes, a tiny problem, and no one’s to blame. You see, we already spent all the festival budget. We thought there wasn’t going to be a festival this year, so we spent it on the town council’s cocktail party last week. Oops.” He laughs nervously. “Like I said, no one’s to blame. How could we have known that you’d be able to do this?”

You glare at him for a while and then say with a resigned sigh, “Okay, here’s what we do. If I can collect enough money, will you swear on your pet llama that the festival will be organised?”

“Yes, yes, of course. Just hurry up. There isn’t much time left. But before you leave, I should probably tell you that there’s been an anonymous complaint about you. It’s from someone who thinks that humbug like this is going to destroy our town by causing a terribly merry chaos. Their words, not mine. They say they’re going to prevent it at any cost. It’s probably an empty threat, but I thought that you should know in any case.”

You nod and get up. “I’m ready,” you say. “Let them try to stop me.”


Task: Fundraising for the festival. You’ll need to ask people for loans and sell items that help you spread the good cheer. Suitable things to be sold are playful paintings, Cupid Juice drinks and MySims trophies. If you have Get to Work, you may also run a bakery (if you do this, you can use money cheats to buy a bakery temporarily, because it’s not possible just to “borrow” one). Additionally, if you want to, you can earn money in one other way that you think fits the festive spirit. Use your imagination!

Points to be calculated when this second week is over:
Loans: 1 point for every 1000 simoleons earned by asking people for loans (maximum: 5 points)
Playful paintings: 1 point for every painting sold (max 5 points)
Cupid Juice drinks: 1 point for every five drinks sold (max 5 points)
MySims trophies: 1 point for every trophy sold (max 5 points)
Running a bakery: 1 point for every 100 simoleons earned (max 5 points)
Your own freely chosen way to earn money: max 5 points (you decide how to count the points)

Goal: You are successful if you get at least 15 points. If you did, congratulations! Get ready for next week’s challenge.


WEEK 3

(Don't read if you haven't completed weeks 1-2 yet!)

“I’m so happy to hear that you were able to collect enough money for the festival,” says the head of the town council frowning and looking desolate.

“Couldn’t you at least try?” you ask with a sigh.

“Try what?”

“Not to look the opposite of happy every time I’m talking to you about this. It’s a good thing, the festival, right?”

“Yes, yes, sorry. It’s true that I’ve been feeling a little gloomy for the past two weeks. Strange. Anyway, we’ve got enough money now. That’s great. Now we need to raise awareness so that enough people visit the festival, and we also need to find some performers. That’s going to be tricky. I’ve asked around but it seems that people aren’t willing to perform at the festival because there’s so little time left to practise. So it’s up to you to solve this problem, I’m afraid. Luckily I’ve found a caterer for the festival, at least. They served delicious cookies at the town council’s cocktail party, and they’ve promised to bake them at the festival, too. So, erm, I hope you are an enthusiastic trumpet player. Heh. Or know some particularly cool dance moves.”

“Not really,” you say. “But luckily I’ve got some friends and a little time.”

You leave the office and walk home trying feverishly to think of a way to solve this new problem. You’re so deep in your thoughts that when you reach your house it takes you some time to notice that something is wrong. Very wrong. On the wall of your house it reads in huge black letters:

YOU CANNOT BEAT US. WE ARE MANY.

There is a signature under the text: The Anti-Humbug Group.

You shrug and enter your house. At least they have a flair for the dramatic, you give them that. But they’ve chosen to intimidate a wrong person. If anything, your resolve is now stronger than ever. You take your phone and start calling your friends and acquaintances.



Tasks: Raising awareness and training performers. You might also want to keep an eye on the citizens of your town and make sure you really know who your friends are and what they are really like. Some of them might secretly be members of The Anti-Humbug Group... Here are the instructions in more detail:

Raising awareness: You’ll need to make sure that people hear of the festival and think it’s going to be a lot of fun. You can achieve it by expanding your social network (you unlock the ability by increasing the Charisma skill) and by having great parties.

Training performers: Move 2 sims in temporarily. They can be random people or your friends, it doesn’t matter. Use the “Ask to move in” interaction or just edit the town manually. They will be the performers at the festival. It’s your job to make them practise one suitable skill each, and you can also mentor them yourself if you can. The suitable skills are playing the piano, violin or guitar, Athletics, Dance and DJing (the last two are possible if you have the new expansion pack, Get Together). Choose one skill for each of the performers. If the performers aren’t your friends, you aren’t allowed to control them at all. If they are your friends, you can order them to practise once each day (but can't control them otherwise). If they are your good friends, you can order them to practise two times each day. You can use money cheats if you don’t have money for instruments or necessary furniture, for example.

Points to be calculated when this third week is over:
Social network followers: 1 point for every 30 followers (maximum: 5 points)
Silver and gold level parties: 1 point for every silver level party, 2 points for every gold level party (max 5 points)
Performers’ skill points: 1 point for every skill level in the appropriate skill (max 10 points)

Goal: You are successful if you get at least 8 points. If you did, congratulations! Get ready for next week’s challenge.


WEEK 4

(Don't read if you haven't completed weeks 1-3 yet!)

On your way to the town hall, you pass the square where they are already building the stages, carousels and little kiosks for the festival. One vendor has arrived, too, and is selling hot chocolate and cookies that smell heavenly. Everything looks perfect, except for one thing. People don’t look happy. You’ve had a rough week yourself and feel very stressed out, but still… You’re like the epitome of happiness compared to the other passers-by.

You arrive at the office of the head of the town council and knock on the door, but there’s no answer. You hear steps behind you and someone says in a lethargic voice:

“Mr Wilson isn’t working today. I’m his secretary. Please come back later.”

“Why isn’t he working? Is he ill?”

The secretary shrugs. “He said he didn’t feel up to it. Told me he was feeling down. Please come back later.”

“But I need him to help me with the festival! Whose responsibility is it now?”

The secretary shrugs again. “I guess yours.”

You go back home, wondering what to do next. Later that day, the head of the town council surprises you with a phone call.

“I’m sorry, I know we had a meeting today,” he says. “It’s just… I don’t seem to be able to get out of the bed. I think, and I know this sounds stupid, but I think it’s the Anti-Humbug Group. They are doing something to people. They try to make us feel gloomy and destroy the festival. I can’t do this anymore. We should just give up, admit that they’ve won. Whatever you’re trying to do, just stop. Give up.”

He hangs up before you have a chance to say anything. Bewildered, you put down the phone. One thing is clear now: you can’t do this alone. You need allies. You’ll also have to find someone who’s in the Anti-Humbug Group to find out what on earth they’re up to.



The second part - don’t read before you’ve identified at least one member of the Anti-Humbug Group (see instructions below in the Tasks section).



Tasks:
Get to know people in order to identify possible allies and members of the AHG.
Allies: You’ll need to find allies by making friends and finding people who are either Good or Cheerful. Your allies will help you by spreading good cheer and by acting as security guards at the festival. (If you own Get Together, you can create a club for all the allies you have for roleplaying purposes, but that won’t give you any extra points because it wouldn’t be fair to those who don’t have the expansion pack.)
Members of the Anti-Humbug Group: The only way to convince members to resign from the AHG is to find them and befriend them. Every sim who has the trait Evil, Gloomy or Mean or is in the Criminal career is a member. When you’ve identified and befriended one member, read the second part of the story (above). (If you already have such a sim as your friend when this fourth week starts, arrange a meeting with them. You’re then allowed to read the second part.)

Points to be calculated when this fourth week is over:
Allies:
*1 point for every friend you have, 2 points for every good friend you have (maximum: 12 points)
*2 points for every sim with whom you are at least acquaintances and who has the Good or Cheerful trait (maximum: 10 points)
Members of the Anti-Humbug Group:
*3 points for every sim with whom you are at least friends and who has the Evil, Gloomy or Mean trait or is in the Criminal career (maximum: 18 points)

Goal: You are successful if you get at least 18 points and have identified and befriended at least one member of the AHG. If you did, congratulations! You’ve won the whole challenge. You have now enough allies to help you prevent the AHG from destroying the festival and have convinced enough members of the AHG to resign. Unable to achieve anything at the festival, the rest of the AHG either flee the town in shame or are arrested for vandalism. You have good reason to feel proud and the townies, who feel happy again, are very grateful to you. You are free to decorate a park or another venue and roleplay the festival there if you wish. Thanks for playing my challenge! I hope you had fun!


If you have any questions, I'll be happy to answer them!
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Moderator
Original Poster
#2 Old 25th Nov 2015 at 6:41 PM
Yay, my Christmas challenge has just been accepted and published here! I'll add pictures of my own game here when I have a bit more time, but first, here are links to useful custom content in case you want to create a more Christmassy look in your game:

The snow mod: http://www.simcookie.com/2015/11/09...est-disponible/
A beautiful house with Christmas decorations: http://www.thesimsresource.com/down...015/id/1276947/
Links to more custom content: http://www.thesimsresource.com/down...arch/christmas/ and http://simscommunity.info/2015/11/2...r-the-holidays/

It would be nice to know if you'll be joining me in doing this challenge!
Test Subject
#3 Old 25th Nov 2015 at 11:26 PM
I'll always be up for anything Christmas related - definitely going to join in on this challenge!
Scholar
#4 Old 26th Nov 2015 at 1:27 AM
I´m in, too! I think I may create a self sim for this challenge.

I´d like to play the challenge in an already established world instead of a fresh game, is that okay?
(My reasoning is that in a savegame where I know the residents and am attached to them, the story will have more meaning.)
Test Subject
#5 Old 26th Nov 2015 at 7:34 AM
Are we only allowed to make the 1 sim for this or can you have a family?...and if it's a family is it only the actions of 1 chosen sim that count or all of them?
Also, jobs, are we living just a normal life with 1 job for the duration? It's too cheaty to make my sim a comedian to match the challenge and change it to match next weeks challenge, right? or does it matter?
Moderator
Original Poster
#6 Old 26th Nov 2015 at 12:35 PM
Cool! I can't wait to hear how you guys will play this challenge. I left some of the rules a bit vague intentionally so that you can mold this challenge to your liking. It's a Christmas challenge, after all, so the most important thing is for you to have fun.

@ellxn, I'm a fan of Christmas, too. I'm happy to hear that you're in!

@Enki, you can use an existing savegame, I think that's a great idea that fits the theme.
Moderator
Original Poster
#7 Old 26th Nov 2015 at 12:47 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by pixsay
Are we only allowed to make the 1 sim for this or can you have a family?...and if it's a family is it only the actions of 1 chosen sim that count or all of them?
Also, jobs, are we living just a normal life with 1 job for the duration? It's too cheaty to make my sim a comedian to match the challenge and change it to match next weeks challenge, right? or does it matter?


@pixsay, those are good questions! I'd say that it's ok to make a family (or a bunch of roomies or anything like that), but you can only count the actions of one sim. Otherwise the challenge would be so easy that it'd become boring.

You may change jobs in the middle of the challenge if you wish. Choosing whether to make the main sim go to work is one of the strategic choices people need to make in this challenge, and you're free to take any approach.
Test Subject
#8 Old 26th Nov 2015 at 4:59 PM
Thank you
I was thinking more each sim would have to complete the challenge rather than joining their scores, but that would probably get boring as well, so I thought I'd ask just to be clear.

This makes me wish there were more normal jobs. It also makes me miss the gift giving parties in sims 3. I hope if they patch in a christmas event that it's something similar or it's coming in a pack or something.

I can't decide whether to be alone or in a family. I think if I make a family they'll be all bah humbug too except my main sim of course, and if my sim is alone, my made up personal goal will be to become friendly enough with a family or another sim that my sim will be invited to their Christmas, or I'll have a gathering on Christmas day and invite everyone who made it to friend status. Maybe with clubs there can be some way to make a Christmas type club, and recruit people to my cause, it would be cool if gift giving was something they could like to do =D It would be nice if they introduced singing as well. Then we could hang out in a park and sing carols at night =D
My Mum said when Get Together is released they can hang out in the park and do the carols through interpretative dance lol.

I might make my sim single, because I think it will be fun to see who ends up at my Christmas gathering if I don't force friendships but let them come naturally through the challenge play.

Thank you for the challenge btw I don't think I said that yet
Scholar
#9 Old 26th Nov 2015 at 9:36 PM
Argh, ten minutes into the challenge and already I realized that didn´t really I understood the instructions

I just tried to cheer up Geoff Landgraab, who was in a sad mood. To make sure that he accepts the cheer up-interaction I stacked some friendlies and jokes first. Now Geoff is in the "happy" (green) state without my sim having used the cheer up interaction. Does that count as a point or do only succesful "cheer up" interactions count?
Same for calming down - do we get the points once the other sim is no longer angry or only after we did the intended interactions on them?

From my gut feeling I´d say only the special interactions count, because only those erase the negative emotions. Geoff is still sad underneath, he just has a stronger moodlet active from our talking that temporarily overrides the sadness. But I´m not 100% certain.
Test Subject
#10 Old 27th Nov 2015 at 6:58 AM
lok Enki I goofed as well. I spent ages in cas and when i got her in to the game I started to decorate. When I returned to live mode the job tab was open and I noticed my girl was a high school student. I had meant to make her a YA but now my sim is a teenager living on her own with no family. I checked the rules and it just says create a sim and doesn't mention age, so I guess this is ok?
If one of the weeks she needs to do something she can't I can just age her up.
I also forgot I could motherlode twice and I put her in the poorest area of town.
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Original Poster
#11 Old 27th Nov 2015 at 11:39 AM
Enki, my original idea was that only the successful "Try to calm down" and "Try to cheer up" interactions would count, but I notice now that my instructions were very unclear, sorry! Thanks for pointing that out to me, I've edited the rules now. Let's just say that it's indeed as you suggested, I think that's the best way to explain this rule: the special interactions are needed because only they erase the negative emotions so that they don't end up buried temporarily under fleeting positive emotions.

Pixsay, that's completely ok! I haven't played much with teens, but I think teens can do pretty much everything that is required in this challenge, especially since there will always be some options so that you can concentrate on the tasks that you can or want to do. And if you find it too hard to play a teenager, just age her up like you said. By the way, I laughed when you wrote about the possibility of including a "bah humbug" family in your previous post. I can't believe I haven't used that term anywhere in this challenge yet, it's a classic! I'll simply have to put it somewhere. :D
Lab Assistant
#12 Old 27th Nov 2015 at 4:20 PM
I think I'll do this challenge, sounds like fun and fitting for the winter spirit. Though my sims are going to celebrate snowflake day instead of christmas
Are we allowed / supposed to show pictures of stuff? Or just post our scores?

~ formerly known as trüffelschaf ~
Moderator
Original Poster
#13 Old 27th Nov 2015 at 4:28 PM
Jasmea, The Sims 4 Snowflake Day Challenge would indeed be a better name for this challenge since it's not meant to be religious in any way.

Pictures and stories are very welcome, it would be so nice to see or read them!
Lab Assistant
#14 Old 27th Nov 2015 at 7:16 PM
I just love your challenges-always fun! We get right on this-Christmas is just around the corner after all :-)
Scholar
#15 Old 27th Nov 2015 at 9:05 PM
Done & looking forward for the next installment
I played the challenge in a save where all the premades live in Willow Creek along with two CAS households. Those households are between one and two weeks old and most have children.
My selfsim had the traits Creative, Loner and Glutton and the aspiration to become a Bestselling Author (but I switched between aspirations as I went along to farm for points). He also was poor, that is, he only had the normal starting money.

Challenge score: 19 (47, 5%)

Story


Accomplishments & pictures


Thank you for making this challenge!
Lab Assistant
#16 Old 28th Nov 2015 at 12:51 AM
Default A Snowflake Day To Remember
Meet Northlyn Comet. She's a girl who loves the outdoors, is always cheerful and is quite childish at times. However, the one thing she loves most is Snowflake day! When she heard about the council cancelling her favourite festival, she knew she had to do something about it and bring cheer back to her community. Who knows, maybe she'll even find her soulmate along the way?



As soon as Northlyn stepped outside on her new mission, she saw a sim in distress. Her neighbour Jared was in a foul, angry mood. With a little rubbing on the shoulder and patting on the back, Jared was once again fine and Northlyn had completed her very first helpful task. (+1 point!)




Thank you for sharing this challenge! I think it'll be a lot of fun.

Always remember that you are absolutely unique.
Just like everyone else.
-Margaret Mead
Moderator
Original Poster
#17 Old 28th Nov 2015 at 6:32 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by mama_tex
I just love your challenges-always fun! We get right on this-Christmas is just around the corner after all :-)


Thank you for your kind words and welcome aboard!
Moderator
Original Poster
#18 Old 28th Nov 2015 at 6:59 PM
Enki, you never cease to amaze me with your stories! You breathe life to challenges in a way that I wouldn't have thought possible.

Mai2008, I'm happy to hear that you're joining us! Good luck, and I'm looking forward to hearing more about Northlyn's adventures.
Moderator
Original Poster
#19 Old 29th Nov 2015 at 7:01 PM
The rules for the second week have been added.
Test Subject
#20 Old 2nd Dec 2015 at 7:37 AM
I am only a few days in to the first week.

My sim met some neighbors and some random man who seemed sad. When all the neighbors went home the random man got in to her bed, so my sim ran to the old lady's house across the street. She made her dinner and noticed while trying to talk to her that she was insane. There was more but none of it seemed to go right for my sim. I followed my sim to school as well and she's exhausted when she comes back but I think she's made a friend there so that was nice.

I have a question if that's ok. If my sim makes dinner for the same old lady every night, is that a point every night or is that cheating and only once counts?
Screenshots
Scholar
#21 Old 2nd Dec 2015 at 1:57 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by pixsay
When all the neighbors went home the random man got in to her bed, so my sim ran to the old lady's house across the street.

Whoa, imagine that in real life No wonder your poor girl ran fast as she could! I know it´s normal for sims to cry their sorrows out in the nextbest available bed, but this is just hilarious. Here´s hoping things will take a turn for the better for your sim soon!
Moderator
Original Poster
#22 Old 2nd Dec 2015 at 8:30 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Enki
Whoa, imagine that in real life No wonder your poor girl ran fast as she could! I know it´s normal for sims to cry their sorrows out in the nextbest available bed, but this is just hilarious. Here´s hoping things will take a turn for the better for your sim soon!


Yeah, I think you deserve one point just for letting that random man borrow your sim's bed, pixsay. :D

Quote:
Originally Posted by pixsay
I have a question if that's ok. If my sim makes dinner for the same old lady every night, is that a point every night or is that cheating and only once counts?

You get a point every time your sim does that. I don't think it's cheating.
Scholar
#23 Old 2nd Dec 2015 at 8:34 PM
I´m back for round 2 and I must say I love the twist with the unknown foe!

Challenge score round 2: 25/30
Overall score is now 44/70

Story


Accomplishments & Pics
Moderator
Original Poster
#24 Old 3rd Dec 2015 at 10:00 PM Last edited by Aislynne : 4th Dec 2015 at 9:52 AM.
Selfies with Santa might be the greatest idea ever, I love it! I'm also fascinated by Johnny's background, so it's so interesting to see you include it in your story, Enki.
Scholar
#25 Old 4th Dec 2015 at 2:42 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aislynne
Selfies with Santa might be the greatest idea ever, I love it!

That credit goes to my city's Christmas Faire where I saw it just the day before playing round 2

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aislynne
I'm also fascinated by Johnny's background, so it's so interesting to see you include it in your story, Enki.

Sorry for off-topic, but where do you put him on the Landgraab family tree? The Johnny in my main save is Malcolm's second cousin, but I'm undecided on whether he share's Nancy's or Geoff's blood.
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