Hope and Desperation, Part I

I’m still going strong with the Wishful Living Challenge and having a total blast. However, my actual progression with the challenge has been fairly slow. This is not due to lack of playtime, as I’ve been playing nearly every chance I get (even staying up until 2 AM on work nights, because I’m an idiot), but due to various unexpected difficulties, mostly self-imposed. I’m just way too picky when it comes to my Sims.

Last we left Hope Shanley, I was trying to find her a suitable marriage partner and not having much success (because of aforementioned picky-ness). Well, that was only the beginning of the trouble I was to have getting my poor Gen 2 heiress knocked up.

But first…a little side trip to Egypt! Hope received a random opportunity from the military, which is odd because she’s in the culinary career track. But World Adventures wants everyone to travel as much as possible, so Hope was tapped to learn a game called Senet in Egypt and report back to military headquarters in Riverview.

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Learning Senet involved a mere chit-chat with one of the locals (why didn’t they put the actual game in the EP? A Senet table would have been cool!), so Hope spent the rest of her vacation time fishing and collecting.

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Hope developed a slight crush on a French tourist named Sebastien Goncalves, but he seemed completely uninterested in her. Every time she tried to flirt with him, he’d dart off into the desert to explore who-knows-what. Plus he always slept in some other lady’s tent. (Strike-out #1)

Upon returning to Riverview, Hope received a work-related opportunity that required her to bring someone to dinner at the bistro. I had her choose her best friend Travis.

Before dinner, Hope asked Travis if he was single and found out that he is married, which didn’t surprise me since he was always bringing his toddler over to visit. I was disappointed, though, as he still seemed like the best option for her future spouse.

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They had a nice meal and discussed one of their favorite mutual interests — the great outdoors — but after dinner, Travis decided that sticking his nose in a book was preferable to gabbing with his BFF. Not a good sign. Maybe he could sense Hope’s (and my) desperation.

(I love how the lady in the background is yelling at the other one about ratatouille, of all things.)

For whatever reason, probably to satisfy my own curiosity, or maybe because Travis called and asked Hope to hang out, I had her visit his house, which is a lovely farm out in the boonies. Strangely enough, Barry Newbie was there. I thought he was just visiting, but I later found out that he was living there with Travis and his family. Weird.

Hope met Travis’s wife, Reagan. Imagine my surprise to find that she was an elder! An elder with questionable fashion sense.

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Travis and Reagan seemed very much in love – they even flirted openly right in front of Hope. Bummer. I hated to break up a happy marriage. But it occurred to me that she could pass away soon, leaving Travis single again. Horrible thought, but desperation knows no shame.

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Before Hope left for the night, she and Travis played catch out in the garden, which I thought was kind of neat because it was right in view of the Granary where Hope’s father, Don Lothario, used to live.

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I found it funny that Hope nearly beaned Travis in the head with the ball. If I didn’t know better I would have thought she was a little torqued about his marriedness.

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The next day I decided that Hope might as well attempt to break the marriage up. Reagan’s days were numbered, and for that matter, so were Hope’s. Desperate times call for desperate measures, etc. So the next evening, she invited Travis over for dinner and readied her lair for an attempt at seduction. There was grilled salmon, good music, a little vertical woohoo…

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…and it seemed to be working! Travis responded positively to Hope’s flirtations. We were on our way.

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But Hope could never get past the light flirting stage with Travis, and he never flirted back autonomously with her – he kept wanting to Chat and Tell Stories. It felt like he was responding just to be nice and didn’t really reciprocate her feelings.

Eventually it got late, and Travis had to leave. The status of their relationship when he left hadn’t changed one whit all evening – they were still Best Friends. It was as if nothing romantic had even occurred.

Well, that was enough for me. Travis was proving to be far too difficult to woo, and time was running out. (Strike-out #2)

It was time for a new strategy. Since single adult males were so few and far between in Riverview, I started watching the story progression notifications for guys who had just turned from Teen to Young Adult. I figured maybe Hope could snatch one up before story progression married him off.

The next night, a story popped up to let me know that someone named Beckett Newbie had aged up to Young Adult. I clicked on his picture to find out where he was — the camera zoomed to his location — and had Hope drop what she was doing to rush off and meet him. Yes, it had come to this. Hope and I were stalkers now. No single man was safe from our mighty ray of ZOOM!

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Beckett was having a nice conversation with one of Riverview’s many old geezers, but Hope butted in and chatted up a storm, working her way up to the ultimate question – which I hoped would lead him to flirt with her. Yeah, I still had this stubborn idea/hope that Mr. Right would flirt naturally with her and not have to be forced, prodded, coerced, and cajoled.

“Are you single?” she asked him.

Beckett replied that he was married to someone.



The guy had just become a YA like five seconds ago, how could he be married to someone already? Curse you, Story Progression! How did Hope stand a chance if all of the available males got hitched two minutes out of high school? You know, aside from the obviously horrible ones like Barry Newbie, who couldn’t keep a steady relationship to save his soul.

Ah well, another strategy shot in the kiester. (Strike-out #3)

(continued on Page 2)

29 thoughts on “Hope and Desperation, Part I

  1. First of all, “toast” is always my anti-spam word. Lol.

    Second of all, I am really truly enjoying this challenge of yours. I’ve fallen in love with the Shanleys all over again, and I it is really fun to read about. I think Hope is so very pretty, and she seems like a sweet sim. Any man that doesn’t want her is just plain dumb! I was hoping she’d find a tourist to marry…she’d have cute chinese babies for sure. Is it even possible to marry tourists? I haven’t done much WA stuff yet.

    I have the same problems finding single sims ever since I installed that Story Progression mod. It seems they get married off so fast. And once they’re married, it’s near impossible to get past simple romantic interactions. I usually cheat…I make the sim that I want to marry the active sim, then break him up with his wife and have him move in with my main sim. Then I get them married! Lol, it’s cheat-y, but it gets the job done!

    I can’t wait for part 2.

    • Yup, you can definitely marry tourists; once you’ve met them, you can chat with them long distance from home and even invite them to visit. And heh at having to cheat to get your Sims married off…it’s really too bad that even non-EA Story mods have us resorting to things like that! Which one are you using?

      • Very nice to know about marrying townies. That opens up some new possibilities for my poor lonely sims. I’m using Twallan’s mod also. I love all of the notifications it gives you whenever something happens in the hood, but man does a lot of things happen! Like you’ve seen, I have trouble finding single sims too. It seems that right after they age up, they’re taken!

  2. Pangu’s angels.. lol!

    Man, I thought the story progression mod helped the rapid geezerification of the town. (I don’t have the mod yet… I’m clueless on installing, etc)

    Pangu’s Angels? BWAHAHAHAHA! I love it!

    • Yeah, I think because Riverview started out very YA/A heavy, and Story Progression is trying to keep the town at the same population, it just natually got geezer-heavy as everyone aged. It’s kind of like our own country and the baby boomer generation, I guess!

  3. Isn’t trying to find someone who isn’t an elder the pits?! I have been playing my game over the last couple of days, and trying to find a girl who was even -somewhat- close to my poor boy’s age and not already in a relationship was the worst part. I’ve taken to just trying to pair my sims up with whoever they go to high school with, but in one of my neighborhoods my main family is related to a lot of the other sims in the town, so all the other teens are cousins. Heh.

    Poor Zuzu! At least she got a rather humorous-looking Grimmy, though. And ah, the vacation pictures are slowly wearing away my willpower. I may have to go pick up WA here soon. ;) I hope Hope has some good luck in the man-hunting department soon!

    • Yeah, it’s certainly different from the days of TS2 where there were any number of single ugly townies/NPCs running around, just waiting to be drafted into the family. I guess any kind of story progression is going to make things more difficult, since no one’s in stasis anymore. Sorry to tempt you with pics of WA! Although I do think you’d enjoy it; it’s more fun than Bon Voyage was, to me, although I do wish you could have family vacations more easily. It’s very geared towards playing one Sim at a time.

      • And in Sims 2 if you found a good-looking NPC/townie you could just make a note of them and draft them into the family for later. In Sims 3 I can’t even keep track of the number of times my married sim has come across another that I would love to have marry into the family, only for them to be too old to be of use by the time the current kids finally age up!

        And back to WA… did you have any trouble with the game installing WA or anything? I’d heard a lot of people did, which is the main reason I’ve not yet picked it up. And now that I’m wanting to pick it up, I’m just worried if it’d screw up my game/current saves. :o

  4. Oh MAN! Poor Hope. So few men … so little time. I know exactly how she feels. *sigh* All the good ones are either taken, gay … or dead! I’m rooting for her to find someone in some exotic land somewhere … sometime. Moar Nao Plz?

  5. Poor Hope…maybe Reagan will die soon and Travis will be a little more amenable to hooking up!

    Ha, LOL at your Grim Reaper! What the hell is up with that?!

    I’ve got the same problem as you with finding eligible Sims, though in my case, they’re not married – they just don’t exist! I actually had to completely abandon my legacy hood because my male heir was waiting on a girl to marry and there were literally NONE! There hadn’t been any babies born to other families since well before my heir was born, so the other women in the hood were rather old and grey. And then when some women finally started getting pregnant, they all had boys (checked my story progression settings and the gender thing was on random, so it wasn’t that). It was frustrating!

    • Ack, that is definitely frustrating! I hope the various Story mods can evolve so that we can play things like Legacy challenges and not have these issues, but who knows. It’s too bad you had to abandon your legacy hood…yikes.

    • Hi Kay! Yup, I am using Twallan’s Story Progression, and I really like it, for the most part. I think you’re right, I just need to move some more families into town and shift the ratio of young’uns to geezers.

  6. Ha, that Grim looked funny! And, um, char-broiled. And what is with those traffic jams (“oh golly gosh, there’s someone standing in front of me! I’d best just stand here and look like a doof rather than just MOVING OUT OF THE WAY!”), that’s the one thing guaranteed to get me swearing at the game.

    Great update, although it did nothing to talk me out of attempting the Legacy challenge. I should try it just to see how long I can go this time without going insane and/or cheating.

    • Yeah, I ended up installing AwesomeMod just to get the better route navigation! My Sims don’t run into each other as much now, and if they do, they rectify it quickly, instead of standing around tapping their toes for eons…

      Good luck with the legacy challenge if you try one! I also recommend the Wishful Living Challenge — I find it more fun and challenging than a regular legacy.

  7. Hope is really sweet and cute. But what is up with no available guys!! I abandoned my Legacy for the same reason–

    I love how you and Hope were stalking anybody with the least bit promise.

    The first picture is really great too–I thought she was fishing in the farming town that came with the game, but then I saw the sphinx!

    • Heh, yeah, I’m in love with the scenery in the WA locations! Each one is beautiful in its own way (although France is a little undercooked compared to China and Egypt). It’s too bad you had to abandon your legacy, too…it’s funny, because the legacy challenge was such a hugely popular thing during the glory days of TS2. And it’s just not working as well in TS3, which is geared towards playing one family at a time. Anyway, hopefully the game and the various story mods will evolve so that we don’t have these issues.

  8. Married? He was married?! You just get notified and… well geez how is Hope going to find someone if that’s the case. Silly sims.
    I was waiting for you to say she found someone in China.. what about the guy who taught her a song? He was kinda cute.
    *tear* By Zuzu!

  9. It does occur. Does she get a way to contact Mr French Explorer Sebastien Goncalves? Maybe away from tombs and things he’ll be more approachable!

  10. I’m usually in lurker mode these days due to utter lack of time (sigh), but I had to comment since you’re blogging again AND since your grim reaper nearly made me pee myself with laughter.

    I’ve used a bunch of story progression mods and not run into that one, LOL! What a shame! That is just too funny to pass up. Poor Zuzu… at least the silly reaper brings some levity to the situation.

    If you’re still using EA story progression, I’d definitely suggest using a mod. I’m using Twallan’s and haven’t run into any issues with towns being overrun by old codgers or dying out completely. I’ve been using it successfully for a few months now.

    • Maooo! Long time, no see! I’m glad my pic of the reaper made you laugh. I found it pretty darned amusing myself. :)

      I’m using Twallan’s mod, and the town isn’t dying out or anything, but it does seem a bit geezer-heavy. I’m going to add some younger families to the mix and see if that shifts the balance of the demographics at all.

  11. I had a heck of a time with Twallan and elders until I installed SLAM (after asking on the forum and getting advice to do so) and set it to “real life” progression.

  12. I’ll elaborate. I started a neighborhood and just let it run for two days, checking the demographics using the Super computer. My neighborhood hovered at 34-55% elders on normal lifespan. I tried using short lifespan, to see if that would kill any off, and it did lower the elder percentage some, but not enough. Then I installed SLAM from MTS, the Real Life version, and that finally dropped my elder ration to around 20-25%.