I’m back!! -Who is this Waiter for Food Synthesizer?

Well, I hadn’t played the Sims in a while, and just recently started up again. I usually just try to complete the goals/achievements, but lately I’ve hit a impasse. So I started re-playing a few features. One I call “Cat Lady” – I realized I’ve taken several screenshots of that so I’ll make it into a series of posts! The next I’m playing is the firefighter profession. To get started quickly, I try to find an existing family that has the right characteristics I’m looking for. I found one with Chelsea Gateway and her Plumbot Gladys. They didn’t get along, so I moved Gladys out. Chelsea is Brave and Athletic so she should make a great firefighter. She joined the profession, and I spent quite a while fixing up the neighborhood fire station (Moonlight Falls). I removed the garage doors and cars, added the futuristic bed that only takes a few hours to get full energy, and other improvements to kitchen and bath. I added the food synthesizer that came with Into the Future. Then when she went to work, there was a waiter (waitress) there! I guess if the synthesizer is on a community lot you can order your food from the waiter?? Isn’t it easy enough to order food from the synthesizer? I guess it can backfire if you don’t have enough advanced technology skill, but it still seems pretty self-serve to me!

SimCity Glitches -Garbage Truck Stuck Off Road

Ok I’ve heard that there’s a lot of glitches in the new SimCity. For instance, I really wish their algorithms for ambulance, garbage truck, and fire truck routes were better. I think related to those routes is a bug where the vehicles just seem to stop doing their routes at all. I just noticed my garbage was not being picked up. I only have 4 trucks and over 5000 cans of garbage, so I need to add more. BUT after doing some road remodeling I had noticed a truck stuck off road. I thought it would be removed automatically, but it hasn’t in a long time. I just demolished the garbage truck garages but it’s still there 🙁 I guess I’ll just add the garages back and hope this one is just an extra (and I don’t have to pay for it!).

Off Roading!
Off Roading!

Sims 3 Into the Future – Dig Rainbow Knoll

I’ve been playing Into the Future for a while now, and got the Utopia future world. I see the pretty colorful trees, huge flowers that you can harvest dew, but I heard there’s buried treasure somewhere. I started looking around but didn’t really know what to look for. Then, my Sim Dante got a wish to “Dig Rainbow Knoll” and I see a little picture of a dirt mound. It says something about buried treasure and dig up a suspiciously loose dirt mound. I still didn’t see anything around the town that looked like the picture in the wish, so I did some Google searching to see what it looks like. I found an article that briefly mentioned it and shows a picture of a rainbow leading toward a dirt mound. Finally I found one! Here’s some shots. It’s by a residential household in the mountain area. Hope it helps!

Rainbow Knoll location
Rainbow Knoll location
Rainbow Knoll close-up
Rainbow Knoll close-up

Completing Badge- Have 15 Children/ 30 Grandchildren

I decided to try working on one of the base Sims 3 game badges a few days ago, Get a Sim to have 15 Children and Get a Sim to Have 30 Grandchildren. I thought, since a household has an 8-Sim limit, surely these two badges are the exception to the rule that you need to stay playing the same household in the town to register the badge! Sure, you can use the edit town to move out the children sims, but then how do you get each of 15 children to find a partner and have grandchildren without moving them out and playing separate households??

Well, I guess I found out the hard way when my McElley couple finally had their 15th child – I didn’t use any adoptions because I was afraid it wouldn’t count– and the next time I went into that family, no badge appeared. Very disappointing since I have separate families now for about 7 of the children – each found a spouse and started having children. I was up to about 7 grandchildren with 3 more on the way! But I kept switching to each new household.

I did a quick internet search and found this nice page on buildSims.org to tell you how others have completed some difficult badges. It does give a warning that you have to stay on the same household throughout completion. You can still do it without cheating technically, but there are some techniques that are almost required unless you want to spend a really long time.

Here are my tips:

  • Due to the 8-Sim limit in a household, you’ll need to use Edit Town mode to split up your household and move the oldest children out. But only move a child out once they have (at least) 2 children.
  • Adopting children seems to work just as well as having them naturally, so you might as well use that to your advantage and adopt. I guess you don’t even need to start with a couple, just a single parent.
  • The cycle would be: adopt a child, age them up to Young Adult, have them adopt 2 children, then move that ‘family’ out. Continue to adopt the next child.
  • Techniques on aging up:
    • I immediately set my game options to  make baby, toddler, child, and teen stages take only 2 days. Since I was having babies naturally, this still took a long time to get to Young adult though! If you adopt you can skip baby and toddler stage.
    • Buy the birthday cake to age up a child immediately. *Note: The birthday cakes do go bad, so you’ll need to buy them just when you need them. It might save some time to have the grocery store close to your house. It can be annoying especially if it’s on another island in Island Paradiso. I just added a new store closer to the house.

Not as much Woo-Hoo-ing going on with this technique though!

Edit: I tried this approach using only adoption rather than natural births. I got the 15 children badge but not the 30 grandchildren! I wonder what happened! 🙁 I went on to 31 grandchildren and I’ll see if a few more will trigger it. Each child had just 2 children.

Where do you find Harvestable Kelp?

Mermaids’ favorite food is Kelp, which satisfies much more hunger than even raw fish or human food. But buying from the grocery store can be expensive! You can harvest it from underwater plants, but where? When you’re a mermaid, you have level 10 diving skill so can go to any dive spot. I found some here at the cave at Pearl’s Deep. They are the small light-green plants (3 pictured below).

Harvestable Kelp
Harvestable Kelp


Each one can be harvested repeatedly, and you get 3-4 kelp with each pick! A great way to collect a good supply.

Mermaidic Kelp Not Working, Bad Quality

I’ve been trying to become a mermaid with one of the pre-made Sim families in Isla Paradiso, Rajan Patel. I want him to fall in love with a mermaid, become one, and have a mermaid baby to complete the Sims Badge! He became friends with a male mermaid and got several pieces of mermaidic kelp. But when Rajan ate it, he would get nauseous for 2 hours, throw up, and that was it. No transformation. I even waited a day or so to see if it happened later. But nothing. Then I decided to pull it out of the inventory and compare it to the normal kelp you can buy at the store.

Here’s a screenshot – the “Mermaidic Kelp” received by the mermaid is blackish and has some bad quality indications, and some normal kelp is nice green.

Bad Mermaidic Kelp
Bad Mermaidic Kelp


So my theory is the mermaid Townie I found has some bad kelp that he gave us! I even created a brand new Sim and merged her into the family to try it, but it didn’t work for her either. Then I put some in her inventory and moved her to another lot via Edit Town. When she ate one on the other lot, it worked! She transforms almost right away. Also when she pulled it out to eat it, it was glowing! That must mean it’s a good one. Then I moved her back into the original family. The kelp is now glowing!

Good Kelp-Glowing
Good Kelp-Glowing


EDIT: I found on a Sims forum that the evil mermaids may give you bad kelp. The one I became friends with did seem kind of strange looking. His name was Salty.

Building your First Island Paradise Resort

The first uncharted island I discovered is quite nice, Beryl Shoals. I decided to try building my first resort there. First, I went to live mode, clicked on the icon in map view, and converted to a resort. To build the resort, I used the stilted foundation plus the regular foundation to build a good sized building around the little pond. Created several rooms with just a bed, and a common bathroom. I took quite a bit of time creating an upper level deck with a hot tub overlooking the pond. (I had to use the terrain tools to get the level of the deck just right so steps would join it to the main building). I spent quite a bit of time just getting the basic walls, wallpaper, flooring, etc. Then when I went to Live mode it said it was closed because it didn’t have a Resort Tower!

Remember to Include a Resort Tower!

So I had to level out some of the mountain on the island and pick one of the basic resort towers (you can view the resort-specific items in buy mode- >sort by function). I read that the resort tower is where multiple guests can stay in a rabbit-hole style, where you don’t get to see what’s going on inside. You can click on it to set certain options like enable room service. One of the first complaints I got was that there was no room service!

Here’s a screenshot of my initial working resort!


My First Resort
My First Resort


Houseboat with Jetski or SpeedBoat

I couldn’t figure out how to add a Jetski or Speedboat to the Houseboat that my Sim family owns. It says you need a mooring post or cleat, or boat trailer. But I think the mooring post and cleat need to be placed on some open ocean water. So I just bought a house lot and tried out the stilted foundation to build a house out over the water, and added a mooring post and cleat there.  Here’s my new house on the mainland, in case they want a break from their houseboat.

House over water with boats
House over water with boats


Now that I think about it, you should be able to place a boat trailer on the roof or any large area of your houseboat, and place the speedboat there. So I tried it out and it works great!

Boat on houseboat


Then when he went boating, he actually went on to land, turned around, and the boat transported next to him so he could hop on.



The speedboat is so much faster than the Houseboat that he’ll be using it to go scuba diving and snorkeling!

Sims 3 Island Paradise – How to get to another island

I installed the Island Paradise expansion pack today! I can’t wait to try all the different features in this one, like scuba diving, traveling to different islands, finding map fragments to get to those uncharted islands I see hidden in the mist, and owning a successful resort!!

One thing I wondered about was how a typical Sim would be able to get from one island to another to get to the shopping over there. Would they need to swim over? Would they need to buy a boat? No! There’s a taxi boat that automatically picks them up!

Taxi Boat
Taxi Boat

SimCity Power Grid Bug

Even if you have enough power capacity (e.g. buying enough from a neighbor and your gauge says no excess and no deficit) not all buildings may get power. I wait and wait to hope that the power eventually reaches them, but it seems to be taking a long time! Are there some buildings who use up all the power before it reaches these outlying buildings? Or is it because my road system has a lot of dead ends that are not being reached?

Power Grid Issues