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The Best Selling Computer Game Ever.. The Sims

Boot Camp feature for Friday, April 26, 2002

The best selling computer game of all time. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. It has sold over six million copies... not including add ons to the game. The Sims... lets players control the life of a virtual person. It's the creation of Will Wright... founder of Maxis, now part of Electronic Arts. His explanation for the popularity...

"Well one thing is that the game is about real life. Most computer games are about a fantasy land or they're military warfare things or sports things... but The Sims is really about normal everyday life. So I think everybody can kind of approach with a certain amount of experience and expectations of how to play. And also we went out of our way to make the game very approachable even to non-gamers. We tested the interface with a lot of people who don't normally play computer games."

More than fifty percent of the players... says Wright... are female. Highly unusual for a computer game. And its popularity spans all ages. Perhaps it ties in with the reality TV craze...

"A lot of times people kind of put themselves in the game... they're kind of looking at themselves now from above. And they get a different perspective on how they balance their time and what they do with their life. It kind of takes real life and turns it into a strategy game. That's kind of what The Sims is. And people can't help but walk away from the game thinking about their real life in those terms, which is kind of funny."

There are now four expansion packs... .the latest being The Sims Vacation... and plans are in the works for an online version. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.