you can rush home from your real job, to work at your
fake job in The Sims universe. You might even want
to call in sick. by
17, 2006 - As
the third expansion pack for The Sims 2, Open for
Business, takes us where we've never been before in
the Sim's world - the world of work. In this game
you are an entrepreneur of a business of your own
design. You'll have employees, merchandise, a business
location - and hopefully lots of money.
some ways you could call this game an economic sim,
but that sounds so conservative, sterile and boring.
Keep in mind that although you are about to enter
into the business world, you are still in The Sims
universe. The gameplay is open-ended and you're self-employed
which makes for a lot of freedom. You'll interact
with a lot of eccentric characters and get involved
with a lot of interesting situations. There's never
a dull moment since you have total control over your
can be in the business of selling goods, services
or both. You're only restricted by your imagination
- and your financial situation. Although you may be
limited by funds, there are ways to raise more capital
to purchase bigger and better operations.
your character and then choose your business. You
can open up a restaurant, bakery, salon, flower shop,
electronics retail store, toy shop or clothing store.
You are not limited to just one business. You can
decide to open a bakery inside your toy store if you
think that will generate more customers.
you decide on a business, you must choose a location.
Perhaps you can work out of your home for a while
and save money on rent or not having to purchase a
building. Maybe you can get by just using the telephone
or a computer. When you generate enough income you
might want to move into a more expensive location.
You can even purchase the lot and speculate on real
estate. There are tons of items such as desks, shelves,
lighting fixtures and a myriad of other designs and
details that you can purchase to make your store,
shop or office stand out. Making your place look good
is essential to success since customers will be drawn
to places that they like. Through interfaces you will
be able to keep tabs on customers' likes and dislikes.
If you have a nice place with good prices and a good
sales team you will generate customer loyalty. Your
establishment will receive stars, like a hotel rating
system, which will rank your business higher as you
receive more stars. Not only will this bring in more
customers but you will receive more bonuses such as
lower wholesale prices and business perks which range
from motivational lectures that improve employees'
performances to upgrading employees skills and talents
to create and design new items for sale.
each business you will choose items from a catalogue
that you can purchase at wholesale prices and then
sell them for more money in your retail store or shop.
This is the essence of business - buy low and sell
high. But if your prices are too high you might not
get many customers. You can change the prices of items
and even put some "on sale" with prices
so low that you might even be selling them for a loss,
but in the hopes that it will increase traffic so
that customers may purchase other more expensive items
that aren't on sale.
can be hired, trained, promoted and fired. Some are
skilled in different areas and it's your job to exploit
them. You can watch their interaction with customers
and while you can't directly control them, you can
click on their interface and give them some direction.
This is called management - or babysitting as I like
to call it. Some employees will be walking around
in a confused state. Not uncommon if they are under
25. You have to set them straight by giving them a
task such as stocking shelves or cleaning the place
will come in with "Buy" bars over their
heads. The higher the Buy bar, the more interested
they are in purchasing something. Your sales employee's
ultimate job is to raise that bar. If their social
interaction skills are poor, that Buy bar may go down
and you'll lose a sale. Salespeople with such poor
skills are subject to be fired before they lose you
an employee/customer interaction, if you see the potential
sale waning, you might want to activate your salesperson
"dazzle" command, in which they genuinely
excite the shopper into purchasing an item. This is
a skill not all of your employees have. At the same
time you might want an employee to do a hard sell.
This is risky as it might upset a loyal customer but
it's almost guaranteed to make a sale. Risk is the
name of the game in any business and you'll have to
asses a variety of risks to achieve some level of
success in business - or blow it all to hell by making
the wrong decision.
you're preparing food or making toys you will want
to acquire talent badges. These allow you to have
above-average skills in any particular discipline.
There are things such as various toys and floral arrangements
that you can't buy from the catalog. You have to make
them in your shop. This is where the talent badges
come in. It will allow you to produce items for less
and sell them in your store. Ultimately it makes your
entire enterprise more valuable allowing you sell
your business for a tidy profit which you can then
invest in a bigger venture.
are lots of stock animations that retain a lot of
Sims humor. Give someone a bad haircut and watch them
freak. You can even go home at the end of the business
day and live a little of that original Sims life in
your own home, eccentrically outfitted with all the
money your business has generated.
not only use the Sim-speak form of gibberish but the
music, which features original artists, is also performed
in Sim-speak. New Wave artists such as Depeche Mode,
Howard Jones, Kajagoogoo and the Epoxies have re-recorded
their hits in Sim-speak exclusively for this game.
is just enough realism in Open for Business to make
this challenging even for boring economic students,
but it's still a lot of fun for Sims fans that have
come to know and love the wacky characters and unpredictable
situations that you run into in The Sims universe.
Thriving Businesses: Open shops selling any existing
item and create your Sim's empire.
The Boss: Train employees, promote the best, and
fire the rest.
the Tricks of the Trade: Cater to different shoppers.
Should your Sims use a hard sell or drop the price
to close the deal?
Talents into Cash: Go from Tinkerer to Master, craft
toys, arrange floral bouquets, or build zany robots
to catch shoplifters.
than 125 New Items: Stock up on essentials for your