This year has been a busy one for The Sims 3, what with 3 stuff packs, and now a second expansion pack (with another one on the way in November). Whether you’ve been collecting each and every one, or just picking up the ones that appeal to you, Supernatural is something you’ll want to investigate.
As the name suggests, the theme of this expansion is the Supernatural. This in itself is nothing new to the Sims franchise, with just about every expansion pack having included some or other mystical being. However, this is the first time we’ve had so many collected in one expansion pack. There are several that have made appearances in the Sims world before, including witches and werewolves, and others that were already in other Sims 3 expansions, like the vampire and genie, as well as the brand new fairy.
Entirely new to any Sims game is the ability to create Supernatural Sims from scratch. This means you can start a new game, go to create a family, and choose to make a ghost, vampire, fairy, witch, genie or werewolf Sim instead of a human one. There is also a wide variety of new skin tones, meaning you can really go to town and create the perfect freaky family. There are also a handful of other options available when creating Sims, like the ability to create and fine tune pointy ears. The various Supernaturals do have unique options where applicable, for instance, a choice of styles and colours of a fairy’s wings.
As with any expansion pack, there are plenty of new outfits and hairstyles available. A handful of these options are available to children and teens, but most are for adults. Styles range from Victorian type dresses to fairy and genie outfits, to ragged zombie/werewolf clothes. There really is quite a nice selection here, and the new hairstyles complement the clothing nicely.
There are also a few new traits and lifetime wishes, some specific to certain Supernatural types. Which brings us to the new skills and career. Sadly, there is only one new career, fortune telling, but this does make sense as the pack really focuses on the Supernaturals. Alchemy is the new skill, something that witches in particular excel at, allowing your Sims to create a variety of potions from plants, bugs and gems. These potions can do anything from temporarily (or permanently) transforming a Sim into a zombie, to curing a plague, to improving job performance.
Other new interactive objects allow you to keep bees and harvest their honey (assuming the bees don’t decide to attack your unwitting beekeeper!). You can also cut gems at home instead of sending them away. There is a wonderful selection of themed furniture, which, like the clothing, focuses on a fairy-ish theme and a Victorian theme. My favourite items included the altar bed, perfect for your slumbering vampire, and a rather dramatic couch that would work well in any pompous, overly dramatic Supernatural home.
The new town is Moonlight Falls, where Supernaturals abound. There are a variety of old fashioned homes here, complete with a family of vampires and a family of werewolves, among others. There’s a definite hint at a Twililght influence in the vampires, which have been updated for this expansion pack. Vampires can even choose to gain immortality, which also includes immunity to sunlight and a tendency to… sparkle…
The collection journal is a fantastic new addition to the game, as it shows exactly what is available to collect and keeps track of what you have already collected. It’s perfect for those magpie Sims. Phases of the moon have also been added to the game, though you can adjust these in the settings (heck, you can even turn off some or all Supernaturals if you really want!). The main effect of the lunar cycle, is that the full moon draws out the Supernatural beings in the town. Most noticeably, you’ll see zombies popping up in your backyard at night. The main annoyance here is that they tend to eat your plants. Fortunately, they are thwarted by doors and fences, so unless they spawn inside your gardening patch, your plants should be fine.
Whether you decide to create human Sims and painstakingly go about transforming them into Supernatural Sims, or if you decide to make a Supernatural straight away, you’ll notice that each type of Supernatural has their own special abilities and quirks. They tend to grow in their powers as they make use of them, unlocking new spells or abilities. They’re not all powerful, however, as spellcasters have an energy bar that depletes as they use spells and abilities, needing to be replenished over time (or with a potion).
Witches cast spells and ride brooms (they can even compete at the arena in town), and in a nice cross-expansion addition, can take cats as familiars to enhance their powers, if you have the Pets expansion. Witches can do everything from start fires to putting them out, to magically upgrading items and cursing other Sims. Fairies, on the other hand, project auras that soothe nearby Sims or improve their learning of certain skills. Fairies can also turn into tiny sprite form and magically repair items or hang out at the fairy house. They also have a special bond with plants and are excellent gardeners, artists and musicians. Werewolves, as expected, transform during the full moon, but as they grow stronger, they can gain a measure of control over this. I won’t go into any more detail here, as it’s much more fun to discover these things for yourself.
It could be argued that the ability to simply make Supernaturals takes away the fun or challenge, but if you’re like me, you’ve probably been there, done that. Making a vampire or playable ghost previously required rather a lot of effort, so these new options can save you time. It all depends on what you want to do.
If you enjoy playing as the Supernatural type Sims, this is most definitely the expansion pack you’ve been waiting for. If not, perhaps you’ll be more excited by the Seasons expansion pack coming out in a couple of months, which will (finally) introduce weather and aliens to The Sims 3!
Last Updated: September 19, 2012