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Top Secret Researcher
Original Poster
#1 Old 10th Mar 2022 at 8:10 PM Last edited by Corylea : 10th Mar 2022 at 9:22 PM.
Default Wanna Play the 8-Sim Challenge With Me?
Okay, I guess it's not WITH me, but would you like to play separately and then talk about it? What strategies did we try, what worked well and what didn't, what weird stuff did our sims do?

The Eight-Sim Challenge has been floating around for awhile, and there are a few variations. The basic idea is that you make a family with 8 sims and keep them alive without any hacks or mods or cheats. :-)

It's been a long time since I've played without hacked objects that make life easier and more pleasant! :-) I went through my Downloads folder, Objects, Globals, and the folders for every expansion pack and took out my mods, moving them to a safe place. I left in the Maxis objects; I figure those are legitimate. My Downloads folder looks so empty!

Custom heads and clothes are okay, since they don't give the sims any advantage; they're only cosmetic. Custom walls and floors are okay, too, as long as they cost at least as much as the cheapest Maxis wall and floor. I use SimWardrobe's SimWallCat to increase the price of a few walls and floors that I know I'll want to use that were priced too low.

To prepare for playing, I've put my UserData that I was playing before in a safe place and put into the game UserData from right after finishing the tutorial, so Neighborhood 1 is pristine.

But of course, the Maxis-made sims have no interests -- Maxis forgot to go back and give those sims interests when Hot Date was released -- and sims hate talking about something they have no interest in, which means that the Maxis-made sims hate Every Single Topic of conversation. Look, poor Bob Newbie is interested in NOTHING, yet before Hot Date came out, my sims used to have great conversations with him:

There's an easy way around this, though; play a Maxis-made family and take them to a community lot, and the game will generate interests for them.

I took Bob and Betty to Old Town, and they now have interests:

I played every Maxis-made family for two minutes, just long enough to take them to Old Town and back again, so the game would generate interests for them. I also carefully copied down those interests onto a sheet of paper, so I would know who wants to talk about what. :-)

Lastly, I made two families to serve as friends for my main family, since the Maxis-made sims are not enough to get to the top of any career. Since I'm not playing those families -- the Friendly and Neighbors families -- I cram eight sims into each family, for a total of sixteen new potential friends. (Of course, I only plan to make friends while playing the Eight-Sim family; playing another family to make friends with them would be kinda cheating.) I make sure each of the families I made has a phone, and I'm all set to play.

At the last minute, I decide to permit the invisible ceiling lamp from Simlogical. It costs just as much as the Maxis ceiling lamp, but it doesn't obstruct my view of the sims. It gives the same light for the same price as the Maxis object, so it doesn't give any advantage to the sims; it only helps the player see what the heck is happening.

Ready? Okay! Time to make a family of EIGHT sims and try to keep them all alive with NO cheating. :-) Join me?

I've made some mods for The Sims 1 -- yes, The Sims ONE :-) -- which you can find at
Top Secret Researcher
Original Poster
#2 Old 11th Mar 2022 at 4:08 AM Last edited by Corylea : 11th Mar 2022 at 6:25 PM.
Day One, and I now have eight sims to take care of and no mods to help me. It's been so long since I've played without mods, I hope I remember how! Welcome to the world, Anna, Bill, Carmen, Diego, Evelyn, Fred, Ginger, and Henry!

I built my sims half a house. Their house will eventually have a living room, kitchen, two bedrooms with four beds each, and four bathrooms. They can't afford that yet, though, so they have one main room, one bedroom, and two bathrooms.

My strategy for the first day is to get jobs for all 8 sims. The sims begin at 7:01 a.m., and the carpool for the majority of jobs comes at 8 a.m. That gives us 59 minutes to find a job that begins at 8 a.m. Since the carpool will wait until 8:59, that means we have a little less than two hours to get a job for all 8 sims.

Not only do jobs bring in money, but the entry-level job for most careers has almost no need decay. Keep a sim at home, and they'll get hungry, but send them to work, and they won't! (This only applies to the entry-level jobs, of course; needs decay a lot more at higher levels.)

When sims are created, their Bladder and Fun needs are down a bit, but all their other needs are totally full. So we need to get them all jobs, send the ones with the worst Bladder needs to the toilet, and get the ones with the worst Fun needs to watch TV.

We obviously can't get them all jobs if they're all sharing a newspaper, so that means computers. To get jobs for all 8 sims, we need at least three computers. Not only does this mean we can get jobs for three sims at once, but any one computer will only be used 2 - 3 times before we sell it back to the store, which lessens the chance that the darned thing will break on us.

To minimize the distance the sims have to walk, I buy a big table and put it right on the lawn, with computers at three different places and chairs in front of each. I also buy an excellent sofa and the medium TV and also put those right on the lawn. We'll be selling that sofa back to the store before it has a chance to depreciate, but while we're topping off all their motives, they might as well be comfortable. :-)

The first sim to sit down at the computer has the task of getting ANY job that starts at 8 a.m. Once anyone in the household has an 8 a.m. job, that means the carpool will come, and that gives us that oh-so-useful extra hour.

Bill happens to be closest to the computer, so he gets the honor of looking for jobs first. Ginger and Fred are also nearby, so they take the other two computer stations. Bill looks at the first job, and it's in the Fashion career, starting at 8 a.m. Yes! Fashion doesn't pay that well at the early levels, but that's not what's important for that first sim; what's important is that they get the carpool to come.

Once Bill has gotten a job, I send him to pee and wash his hands, then to watch TV. I don't click on the toilet, though. He's outside on the lawn, and the bathrooms are some distance away. So I click on the floor NEXT to the toilet, and Bill makes a mad dash to the bathroom. Once he's there, then I click on the toilet. The minute he leaves the computer, he's replaced by Henry. Meanwhile, Ginger has also gotten the Fashion job.

Fred now takes a chance, and instead of taking the first job offered, he continues the search onto the second job. Politics! Great! That pays well for an entry-level job, and it'll keep them at work (and thus not hungry) until 6 p.m. I send him off to attend to needs, and Carmen and Evelyn take his and Ginger's places. All three of the second set of job seekers take the Politics job, then I send them off to attend to their needs.

Six sims have jobs so far, only two to go! I think we're gonna make it!

At some point during the job-search extravaganza, the Mystery Man shows up with his box. Our room score immediately takes a nose dive -- Maxis REALLY wants you to open that box -- so I have Bill open the box. There's a bunch of stuff we can sell, for around 500 extra simoleons, and Bill now has some magic ingredients in his inventory. As soon as he takes the last item out of the box, the box sails away, and our room score goes back to normal. It isn't HIGH -- we can't afford decorations at this point, but it's still a lot better than it was with the box here.

Anna takes the Politics job and goes off to attend to her needs. Diego is the last one to look for a job, and I have him pass up the first two jobs, so we can see what the third job is. Golf Caddy in the Slacker career! No way! The carpool time for that job is already past, so anyone who takes that job couldn't go to work today, AND the pay stinks. Okay, Diego, start over. The car is out front and honking, but we have time yet.

A few sims have watched as much TV as they want, so their needs are as full as they're going to get right now, so I send them to work. Diego is frantically typing on the computer -- come on, Diego, get the job, but don't break the computer; we can't really afford the $999 hit that would be. Another couple of sims stand up, and I send them off to the car, making sure not to send them all, so the carpool doesn't leave.

Diego takes the Fashion job, since I'm not sure we have time for him to continue to search until Politics is offered. He races for the car, and I send the last sim after him. Henry gets to the car at 8:52, and all eight sims go off to work. Yay!

As soon as they leave, I sell all three computers and the nice sofa and bring the big table, the three chairs, and the medium TV inside. We have a phone, a smoke alarm, and a burglar alarm, because we really can't afford to have anything burn down or get stolen. The alarms cost money, but I think they're worth it.

3 p.m. rolls around, and Bill, Diego, and Ginger return from their Fashion job. Bill and Diego have gotten promoted! Thanks, guys; we sure can use the money.

Now that they're home, I buy them a sofa and a bookcase and get them to study Cooking. Once they've gotten two Cooking points apiece, I buy a refrigerator, stove, and two counters. The Fashion promotion requires Charisma and Creativity, so I also buy a mirror. Since Ginger didn't get promoted, I set her to cooking, set Diego to working on Charisma, and have Bill watch TV.

The Politics folks come home, and Evelyn and Fred have gotten promoted, as well. Excellent! Four out of eight sims promoted means that we can afford beds for everybody. They're the second-cheapest bed, but it's still WAY better than napping on the sofa.

The bedroom is 7 x 5, which means it fits four beds across and two along the other wall. Only two of you will have to sleep in the main room. I move the phone into the bathroom so that it won't wake them once they've gone to bed. I'll need to remember to turn the TV off, too, since it's in the main room with pretty much everything else.

I also buy an easel, so Bill and Diego can get the Creativity point they need for their second promotion. I get everybody to study Cooking and watch TV in shifts, so everybody reaches the level where they shouldn't burn down the kitchen, and everybody's Fun and Comfort needs are high enough that they might get promoted tomorrow.

Eventually, everybody has their two Cooking points, and I send them all to bed. I'm feeling pretty good about my first day ... and then the racoon knocks over the trash can, and all 8 sims immediately vault out of their beds. By the time I got them all back to sleep, it would be time to get them back up again, so I decide to just start their day early, even though their Energy isn't where I'd hoped it would be, poor things.

I'm just about to start having them do the eat-pee-shower-watch television rotation to get ready for work, and then the food I had Ginger make last night develops flies. Oh, that's right! I remember now! I've been using my Food Stays Fresh For A Week mod for so long that I forgot how fast the food goes bad in the vanilla game. Oops! Sorry, guys.

So ends Day 1. :-)

How was YOUR Day 1? What strategies did you use to try to get your sims off to a good start? How did that work for you? Did you have a refrigerator, stove, and counter by the end of Day 1? Did everybody have beds? What skills did they have? How did you feel about how your Day 1 worked out?

I've made some mods for The Sims 1 -- yes, The Sims ONE :-) -- which you can find at
Top Secret Researcher
Original Poster
#3 Old 13th Mar 2022 at 12:23 AM
Default Day 2
Luckily, the raccoon got them up early, so there's time to cook, even though the food we cooked last night has gone bad. It's challenging with only two bathrooms, but with so much time at our disposal, I manage to have seven of them go off to work in reasonable shape except for Energy. We'll all go to bed early tonight, and I sure do miss Simlogical's No Scavengers Mod mod, which gets rid of raccoons, roaches, Claire the Bear, skunks, gophers, bunnies, and non-plate flies!

Ginger didn't get a turn at the bathroom in time to go to work in a good mood, so I decide to keep her home to make a friend, in the hopes that Diego will get promoted again. Even if he doesn't, we'll need that friend shortly, and after eight sims with Zero Neatness points have all taken showers, the place needs a little attention. (I gave all of my sims 0 Neatness, 6 Outgoing, 7 Active, 6 Playful, and 6 Nice, because this makes it much easier to make friends.) Ginger bathes and mops up a lot of puddles, then gets her Comfort and Fun back up by sitting down and watching TV while I wait for the daily walk-bys to give us a friend prospect.

The first walk-by is a dog, but the second is one of the sims I made in the Neighbors family, Ruth. What are Ruth's interests? I consult my sheet, and see that her interests are Travel, Weather, Sports, Music, and Parties. Ginger's interests are Travel, Politics, Weather, Style, and Hollywood. Hmm. Two interests in common isn't ideal, but it's enough to try it at least. Since Ruth is a sim I made, she has the same personality profile I gave above. Six Playfulness will make her like jokes and tickles, Six Niceness will made her like compliments, and Six Outgoingness will make her enjoy social interaction in general. Seven Active will enable her to stand up long enough to socialize for a long time. :-)

Ginger, go greet Ruth, then Talk, Talk, Entertain (Joke), Compliment, Tickle, then repeat that sequence. Mercifully, Ginger decides to talk about Travel and Weather, the two interests she and Ruth have in common, so it isn't long before they're friends.

We made that friend just in time, because the two Fashion guys and the two who'd been promoted in Politics all come home. Diego has gotten his second promotion. Yes! Those lovely promotion bonuses! I set Bill to building Creativity so he can get promoted tomorrow while Diego attends to needs, and Ginger cooks dinner. I buy a second mirror and set the Politics folks to building Charisma.

The Politics folks who didn't get promoted yesterday come home at 6, and Anna and Henry have now been promoted. Excellent! With all those promotion bonuses, we can afford a third bathroom, which will really help in the morning.

Nobody has much Energy, what with the 4:30 a.m. raccoon wake-up call, so the few who are hungry eat Ginger's cooking, and everybody goes to bed early.

Not as exciting a day as yesterday, but three bathrooms, one friend, and three more promotions makes me happy, and I'll take it. :-)

How was your Day 2? Did you also have a raccoon, or did your sims sleep through the night? What's the status of your sims, your house, and your plan? Did anything interesting happen? Did you make any friends?

I've made some mods for The Sims 1 -- yes, The Sims ONE :-) -- which you can find at
Top Secret Researcher
Original Poster
#4 Old 14th Mar 2022 at 2:26 AM Last edited by Corylea : 15th Mar 2022 at 7:34 PM.
Default Day 3
Well, the good thing about having had to go to bed early on Day 2 is that everybody is ready to get UP early on Day 3. I get the first two sims up at 4:30 and set them to making breakfast; since a group meal only feeds six, and we have eight in the family, that means we need TWO group meals, for a total of $40. [I don't know what they're eating, but I could make omelets or pasta for eight for a lot less than that, out here in the real world! :-) ] While those two sims cook, I get three other sims up and have them attend to hygiene. With three bathrooms and an early rising, everybody is clean and fed and has had some TV time by the time the carpool arrives.

Unfortunately, all this hygiene has made one of the showers break. Since Carmen is ready early, I have her call the repairman, and while she's at it, I have her call the maid, too. I'm pretty sure stuff breaks more often if it gets dirty, and although my sims clean the toilet after every single use, they aren't able to clean the shower very effectively. So we'll hire someone who's a lot better at cleaning than we are, and hope that keeps things from breaking again soon. (There's a HIDDEN Cleaning skill in The Sims 1, and maids have a lot more of it than my poor sims.)

The shower's breaking only seems to have ruined MY mood, though; the sims all go off to work in good moods, and the Politics folks all have the two Charisma points they need for their second promotion.

They come home with lots of promotions, but Diego also gets a negative chance card in the Tailor position. He stuck a customer with a pin and has to pay $1000 to make the customer happy again. Whew! That's pretty steep, especially for a Level 2 job. [Will somebody pay ME $1000 if I let them stick me with a pin? Sheesh.] Still, the others get enough promotions that we now have enough money to add a fourth bathroom and a second bedroom. They're still using the main room as both the kitchen and living room, so space is still a bit tight, but not having people sleep in the same room as the TV helps a lot.

We're also able to upgrade the chairs that are around our kitchen table, so we go from the Comfort 3 redwood chairs (Deck Chair by Survivall) to the Comfort 5 metal chairs (the M chair). This will make it a lot easier to get those needs up while they're having breakfast in the morning.

Meanwhile, the maid is still here. She'll eventually charge us $50, but I think it's worth it. It would take my sims a long time to clean the place, and they actually make more money if they spend their time skilling up for the next promotion than they do if they spend their time cleaning. And if you don't clean, the plumbing breaks more, plus you get roaches and flies, and I hate the sound the flies make.

Although Politics has a good starting salary, it requires a LOT of friends, and I want to try transitioning my people out of that career. I buy a computer temporarily and have Henry look for jobs. I'm looking for careers that need three or fewer friends to reach level 5 and twelve or fewer friends to reach the top. I also want the career to pay $400 or more at level 5.

There are eight careers that meet my criteria, but I'm only open to seven of them, since I'm not willing to have my people be Criminals. Fashion is one of those careers, but we already have three people in that, so I'm hoping to find one of the other five: Hacker, Law Enforcement, Medicine, Military, Science, or Xtreme. Military and Law Enforcement both have relatively low pay at the top, but it'll be a LONG time before we get to the top, so I'm still open to those. But Hacker, Medicine, or Science would be especially fabulous.

Henry sits at the computer and starts typing. I tell him no, he doesn't want a job in the Slacker career, and no, he doesn't want one in Music. But the third career is Medicine, and I tell him to take that job. After he's done with the computer, I tell Anna to go take the Medicine career, too, then I sell the computer back to the store.

Everybody builds skills for the evening, and we need a second friend for our next promotion. Donna walks by shortly after 4 p.m., so I look up her interests and find that she has three interests in common with both Ginger and Diego. Ginger is already maintaining one friend, so I send Diego out to chat up Donna. Donna and Diego get along great, and before the evening is over, we have our second friend. Diego is pretty tired, from standing up talking, complimenting, tickling, and hugging for the past three hours, so I send him to watch TV and rest his feet.

Everybody looks to be in reasonable shape, so I send them all to bed -- all in BEDROOMS, even -- at 10 p.m. Evelyn needs the toilet before bedtime, and while she's washing her hands afterwards, the sink breaks. That's the second plumbing disaster in one day! I have Evelyn call the repairman before she heads to bed, and we get ANOTHER visit from a humming Mr. Fix-It while my sims sleep.

I've made some mods for The Sims 1 -- yes, The Sims ONE :-) -- which you can find at
Top Secret Researcher
Original Poster
#5 Old 15th Mar 2022 at 2:16 AM
Default Day 4
The repairman came while my sims slept, so on Day 4, they woke up to four fully functioning bathrooms, which made our morning routine go a lot more smoothly. We human beings love to talk about how smart we are and all we've achieved as a species, but it's funny how often things come down to the basic animal requirements of eating, sleeping, and peeing. :-)

Everybody goes off to work in a good mood; Anna and Henry have their first days in their brand-new Medical career. Almost all of them get promoted, and now we have enough cash to finish off the house! I add the living room, a sidewalk in front of the door, and a row of daffodils on either side of the sidewalk. I'm still using gaps in the wall instead of archways for a lot of things, since Maxis has bizarrely made an archway -- which is just a door frame -- cost 50% more than a door, which is a door frame AND a door. Once we're even richer, we'll take care of those minor details and add a lot more windows, but for now, having enough space to put skilling equipment is lovely.

I move the chess table, the easel, the sofas, the TV, and the bookcase into the new living room. In addition to the new room, we get some new things to put IN that room. I add a love seat to the two sofas we had, so all eight sims can watch TV or read books at once. I buy a weight bench, which the Fashion folks need for Body skill, and which the Medicine people will need shortly.

Now that the house is in reasonable shape, I can get more sims out of that Politics career, which I hate to play more than a few levels of because it requires so MANY friends. I temporarily buy a computer, and Carmen takes today's first offering, the Xtreme career. Fred skips that one to see what the next career is, and I have him take Law Enforcement. Evelyn skips the first two -- will we be lucky THREE times today? -- and the third career is Science! Yay! No more Politics career, and now there's a lot more variety in my game, with sims in more different careers. Tomorrow, I'll have one of the Fashion folks check to see if Hacker is on offer.

Now that both of the Medical folks have been promoted to Paramedic, and Fred is a Security Guard, we have three sims on the night shift. I send Anna and Henry to bed as soon as they get home and send Fred there as soon as he gets the Law Enforcement job. Gosh, it almost seems quiet in here, with only five sims awake. :-)

My sims haven't needed dinner the past few nights, since need decay is so slight in the entry-level jobs, but now that they've been promoted a few times, they're hungry. I have two sims cook two dinners, and Anna and Henry get up from their rest in time to eat dinner with the family. Fred gets up a bit later and has to eat alone, but I have him socialize with Evelyn -- whose interest pattern overlaps the most with his -- to get his social up.

Anna and Henry go off to work at 10 p.m., Fred at 11, and everybody else goes to bed. Tomorrow we'll start working on buying them all better beds, but things are in pretty good shape for now. It's only day four, and things are really up and running. I still miss my mods, but the vanilla game turns out to be quite doable when you understand how the game works.

I had thought I'd be doing this for a week, but things are in good enough shape now that I think this will be my last post about the Eight-Sim Challenge. Is anybody else playing along, or am I talking to myself? :-)

In other news, I've made a flat lamp you can walk on for the yard and have hacked the Mystery Box so it doesn't wreck your room score and optionally gives you enough magic coins to buy a Magic Town lot. I guess I'm not done with modding yet. :-)

I've made some mods for The Sims 1 -- yes, The Sims ONE :-) -- which you can find at
Test Subject
#6 Old 26th Mar 2022 at 6:14 AM
Even if you were playing by yourself, I enjoyed reading this
Top Secret Researcher
Original Poster
#7 Old 26th Mar 2022 at 4:33 PM
Originally Posted by TTR
Even if you were playing by yourself, I enjoyed reading this

Thanks for saying so; I really appreciate that!

I've made some mods for The Sims 1 -- yes, The Sims ONE :-) -- which you can find at
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