I’ve been wanting to play the Homeless Challenge for a while, but felt uncomfortable with the idea. Homelessness has been an upsetting topic in the news lately, and while I think it’s good to explore real-life issues with art, I felt personally uncomfortable with the idea of playing with a homeless sim. But the idea interests me. I like the gaming process of starting with nothing and surviving, and aiming towards a more comfortable position (I’ve been doing this a lot with Minecraft lately, finding ‘start from scratch’ type scenarios like SkyFactory appealing).
Finally, an idea struck me! I could make a group of sims who have chosen to reject the consumerist society and live simply! The Freegan household have opted to be homeless. At first, they will survive off the land: eating wild fruits and vegetables; and fishing (so they’re not technically vegans). I chose a picturesque countryside district of Windenburg as their home and moved them onto an empty lot. The area they can explore is beautiful, and full of natural resources to make their lives easier. There are bushes to ‘fertilise’, rivers to provide fish, wild plants to harvest, places to sleep and rest, and even community bonfires and grills to provide comfort and food.
My three sims are all creative, and will ‘trade’ (not sell, although I haven’t planned this bit out yet) their creations for things to make their lives more comfortable, like tents and showers. Eventually, their plan is to start a bit of a hippy commune and invite other like-minded sims to join them. The three sims are:
* Penelope Greene – an artist and nature enthusiast: she will paint beautiful landscapes and take charge of growing crops.
* Apollo Golden – a happy-go-lucky musician who loves to philosophise about how he will save the world through his music.
* Daphne Laurel – an independent free-spirit who loves books and writing.
My initial play session with them didn’t go to well. I’d set their household funds to zero, and while they’d managed to catch some fish, they cannot cook them on the grill or bonfire (they need a campfire but it is $450), and the wild shrubs have not produced any fruit or vegetables yet. So, they’re kind of starving. I’m using a series of food mods including one that requires all the ingredients before sims can prepare meals, so this aspect will be tricky! I think maybe their enthusiasm for the freegan lifestyle was poorly planned! But I’m excited to see what happens next.
If worst comes to worst, there’s always the local pub.
I’ll upload the household to the gallery later today if you’d like to play along (be sure to use the money cheat one you’ve placed them). Just search for the hashtag: #Freegans