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SimAnimals is a life simulation video game published by Electronic Arts for the Nintendo DS, iPhone/iPod Touch and Wii console systems. It was released on January 21, 2009 in North America. It was released on January 29, 2009 in Australia and January 30, 2009 in Europe.
The game has the player in the same role as in The Sims controlling a disembodied hand in which the player manipulates over 30 types of animals, and creates their habitat around them. The animals evolve personalities depending on how the user treats (or mistreats) them.
The player can use the animals to solve challenges and achieve goals by discovering secrets, unlocking forest areas and uncovering one-of-a-kind objects and wild animals, some with special abilities, by having the animals successfully complete tasks.
After a certain number of achievement points are earned in the DS version, the player can blow into the DS microphone, creating wind for the pickup of berries.
The player can pick up anything in the forest including trees, flowers, other plants, animals, water, logs, and rocks.
The game contains at 35 species of animals from the Northern Hemisphere, some of which include: squirrels, robins, cats, rabbits, mice, crows, dogs, deer, raccoons, weasels, beavers, ducks, hedgehogs, chickadee, boars, rats, doves, bears, skunks, bluejays, porcupines and opossums.
Electronics retailer Best Buy offered an exclusive in-game animal (panda for Wii, electric squirrel for DS) with purchase during the initial US release of the game. In The Next Level you can see animals in the grasslands like before you can choose one forest animal You can see zebras, lions, elephants, hippos, cheetahs, antelopes and gorillas Also there is an unlockable animals (rhinoceros for the Wii and the Nintendo DS, Cappucino Monkey for the Nintendo DS and tiger for the Nintendo DS in bonus).
IGN gave the game a 5.3, writing,
"The Sims franchise is insanely popular for a reason, and growing a community, whether it be man or animal, is rewarding. But no effort has been put into the presentation here. The game doesn't run smoothly, the forest is unattractive, and the controls aren't user-friendly."
However, not all of the reviews have been negative. USA Today awarded SimAnimals 5 stars out of 5. Reviewer Jinny Gudmundsen wrote,
"It (SimAnimals) is a fascinating experience that is hard to put down... There are many things that make this game compelling, including the outstanding graphics, music and artificial intelligence, but the most attractive feature is that the game lets you explore the delicate balances found in nature."
The music for SimAnimals was composed by Winifred Phillips and produced by Winnie Waldron. The music from the game was released on January 13, 2009 as a digital download album by E.A.R.S. EA Recordings. The SimAnimals soundtrack album was released to positive reviews and high scores, including a 9.5 out of 10 from Michael Pascua of The Celebrity Cafe, a 90 out of 100 from Jeremy Hill of Gamertell, and a 9 out of 10 from the music review site VGM Rush.
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- Electronic Arts E3 2008 Press Presentation
- SimAnimals: Animals, Planet The Sims. Retrieved on 2008-09-18.
- IGN: SimAnimals Review, IGN.com. Retrieved on 2009-02-02.
- Get in touch with nature with 'SimAnimals', USATODAY.com. Retrieved on 2009-02-02.
- "The Sims Label Announces Winifred Phillips as the Composer of the Original Score for SimAnimals: Business Wire Business News: ERTS – MSN Money" MSN Money. Accessed January 28, 2009.
- "Amazon.com: Sim Animals: MP3 Downloads: EA Games Soundtrack" Amazon.com. Accessed January 28, 2009
- "Winifred Phillips – SimAnimals Soundtrack – Soundtrack CD Review at The CelebrityCafe.com" TheCelebrityCafe.com Accessed January 28, 2009.
- "Gamertell Review: SimAnimals Official Videogame Score by Winifred Phillips - Gamertell" Gamertell.com. Accessed January 30, 2009.
- "VGM Rush - SimAnimals Original Videogame Score (Review)" VGMRush.com. Accessed January 30, 2009.