Posted in Gaming, Sims 4

Sims 4: Jungle Adventure First Impression

I haven’t been keeping up with Sims 4 releases like I should, so the Jungle Adventure Game Pack snuck past me. When I saw the announcement on a Sim blog I follow yesterday, I jumped over to the forums and Reddit to see what the thoughts were about this game pack.

I really enjoyed the Sims 3 World Adventures expansion pack, and even wrote a series of posts about it a while back. So, it was nice to see a new game pack that was themed towards this sort of thing.

I only got to mess around with it for a few hours, but here’s my experiences so far.

Wobbly Start

Jungle Adventure adds a new vacation location to explore in your Sim world. This builds on to the system they introduced with the Outdoors Retreat game pack a few years back, but doesn’t require that pack to play the new one.

I started by picking a random single Sim from my neighborhood. I’ve become really fond of this particular neighborhood, which houses several of my favorite Sim families. I have the Amanda/Akira family, a family of vampires that I played quite a bit (but never blogged about for some reason), and the family I played around with for the Cats and Dogs release.

I don’t even recall this Sim’s name (poor guy, I’ll have to look it up later), but I selected him, gave him better hair and clothing, and put him on the path to adventure. He started out living in a low-grade apartment in San Myshuno… but I had to move him to a different apartment because the Gremlin trait breaking all his appliances every other day was too much for me.

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And I saw this guy wandering around the local festival… not sure what his story is.

Anyhow. About Jungle Adventures.

So you set up a vacation using your phone. You arrive in Selvadorada, a place inspired by South American jungles, sporting a Latino vibe. You can unlock and level the culture there through interactions, and explore the jungles… if you can figure out how.

When your Sim first arrives, you’re dropped into a map that’s filled with question mark places to explore. The game tells you that you need to pick up some supplies before you head out to the jungle. That makes sense, but it wasn’t very intuitive to figure out.

Jungle Supplies

There’s a little outdoor market next to the bar with three tables and a food vendor. Here’s where the wonkiness comes in.

There are objects you can click on the table to buy — things like a machete (always carry more than one), bug spray and other such objects. But these are only active if there’s someone standing behind the table selling stuff.

Then, there’s a whole different second shop. You can click a shopkeeper Sim and choose to buy adventuring supplies. This opens up things like tents, fire pits, beds, pet supplies (if you brought your pet) and the new archaeology table.

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You can carry the archaeology table around in your inventory and set it up anywhere!

My poor sim was kinda up the creek because he used up his only spider repellent spray the very first morning, and no one ever came to stand behind the table selling sprays while I was in the market. So, I couldn’t replenish it.

Yes, there are spider attacks. And bat attacks… and probably other attacks I don’t even know about yet.

Jungle Jam

So, once I finally got my supplies, I had to figure out how to actually enter the jungle. This is also not intuitive. I ended up having to go to the forum for hints.

So, what you have to do is take your Sim to the National Park lot. There, you will find overgrown archways that you can click on. This allows you to clear the brush with a machete or by hand.

When you finish this, you get a random chance event. Having higher skills seem to help succeed and get a positive outcome on the event. So far, nothing that’s happened during one of these has been too terrible.

Going deeper into the jungle just requires you to continue clearing these passages. They warp you from one area to another in a rabbit-hole type progression.

Archaeology Time

Along the path, I began to find these little dig spots. Here, you can discover artifacts, which have various quality and rarity associated to them.

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Digging up artifacts and authenticating them on the archaeology table increases the archaeology skill, which I was most interested in exploring. You can choose to display the artifacts or sell them once you determine what they really are.

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At the end of your vacation, you can choose to extend the vacation or head back home. My poor little Sim was on the lowest rung of his career ladder, so he didn’t have a lot of vacation time to use.

I gave him a few days out in the jungle, and even discovered the first temple. I haven’t been able to start exploring it yet, so there’s still a whole lot more for me to find.

So far, I give this game pack a pretty positive-average rating. I like that they’ve expanded on the vacation system and are opening up an exploratory area. I’m interested to see what secrets I can find in the temple, and I want to work up the new skill and culture.

However, getting supplies and finding a way into the jungle should have been a little more intuitive from the start. Now that I know how to do these things, it’s fine.

There’s nothing that’s jumped out at me as wow-amazing! so far. Again, though, I haven’t been inside the temple yet. I’m going to assume the meat and potatoes of the game will be there.

I also wonder if clearing treasures and things out with one Sim will leave it like that for others. I believe I read that once you open the path to the temple, all Sims in the neighborhood can go through. But does that mean if you loot stuff, they don’t respawn?

That would be a bummer for replayability. Something I’ll have to check on.

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My first artifact!