Monday, February 25, 2008

When Androids Attack

Hello, hello, everyone! It's a glorious, wonderful, amazing day here, and if I keep using enough over-enthusiastic adjectives like that, I might actually start to believe it! Actually, it's kind of a crappy day for no particular reason, besides that it's still cold out and has been for weeks and weeks, I'm basically broke and eating Saltines for breakfast and lunch during what's supposed to be a ten hour work shift, I have to pee, and there are some other factors at work bringing me down, but do I really need to list anymore? Believe me when I say that if I actually kept a real personal blog, it would be jam packed today (which is part of the reason I don't keep one - who's got the time?)

After playing TS2 and its expansions for hundreds of hours, if you're like me, you've been exposed to lots and lots of the in-game radio stations. I finally broke down and started seeking out some of the songs in their English forms, because it was just too weird listening to and singing the simlish versions, which were the only ones I knew. Is it odd that the songs seem so strange when you can understand the words, as opposed to singing along with gibberish? I think the sign of a good song though is when you like it even without being able to understand a single word, which has been the case with some real songs I've liked in the past anyway.

The focus of our last post here was how Regina Daniels activated a servo named Jack, and how Jack said to hell with doing chores and decided to hit on the females living in the house constantly instead. Needless to say, this made for a weird situation in more ways than one. It was weird for Regina because the real Jack Daniels hadn't really been dead all that long, and it was strange for Debbie because she'd developed a crush on Alex Kent, and didn't have room in her life for a relationship with a robot on the side.

Regina: "That Conan O'Brien…what will he think of next?"

Alex has had a rough road ahead of him where his courtship of Debbie is concerned. When he first took an interest in her, she wasn't officially dating anyone, but Gia Fitch had a crush on Debbie, and took offense to anyone else trying to put the moves on her. That all came to an end eventually, after Debbie got tired of being slapped by Gia and Gia got tired of slapping Debbie and the two parted ways. Alex decided the coast was clear for the time being, with that crazy, jealous Gia out of the way, and proceeded to start wooing Debbie again. Poor Alex was totally unaware that Jack had turned into a self-proclaimed "pimp bot", and wasn't taking people putting the moves on "his women" lightly…

Debbie: "Oh, Alex, you're so much better at that than any robot!"

Like any other illogical sim in a situation like this, Jack sprang into action when he saw Alex and Debbie getting intimate, and proceeded to try to administer a good slapping to Debbie. And as usual, this made no sense, because what Jack saw that set him off was Alex kissing up Debbie's arm, which Alex had initiated. Jack didn't bother trying to slap Alex, of course, because that WOULD have made sense in some weird way (really, Alex had called dibs on Debbie before Jack was even activated, so he really had no business getting huffy to begin with). Poor Debbie - between fighting with Claire over Leon Jackson, getting beaten up by Gia because of Alex, and now getting slapped by Jack, her love life has been a constant war zone. It's amazing she has any interest in love at all anymore (or feeling in her face).

Jack: "Preparing to initiate 'Whoop-ass Program!' *bleep*!"

Yeah, sometimes I don't know which is worse, being stuck on Leon's boat back when she was together with him while he invited all manner of folks to live on the boat with them, or her current situation, where she's STILL living with weirdoes, and now fighting with them all the time. I'd say things were better before, but she was the one that gave all that up so no need to feel too sorry for her. Anyway, as much as Austyn loved to hang out with Debbie, he'd decided to keep a safe distance from all the hand to hand combat that was taking place, and had to find ways to busy himself in the meantime. Austyn decided it was time they gave the original Captain Jack a proper burial, and gave him a nice little grave behind the clubhouse he used to love so much.

Austyn: "If only I'd gone to college! Then we could have brought you back as a zombie!"

It did occur to Austyn at one point or another that the little resurrection phone career reward could bring Jack back, but there were two problems with that idea - the first was that University wasn't installed yet (more than a little setback), and even if it was, bringing back Jack would require somehow introducing a school age child to the family to go to college, or moving in a college graduate, and both methods involved bringing more people into the house, which was the last thing anyone needed. In the end, Austyn decided Captain Jack was probably enjoying his peaceful dirt nap, and given how much he hated being awaken prematurely while he was alive, one can only imagine how he'd have felt about being brought back from the dead. Meanwhile, Regina saw how much trouble robot Jack was giving Debbie and Alex, and decided he had too much time on his hands. She insisted if he cared about her, he'd get a job, and help support the family.

Regina: "You're not looking for a job! The computer's not even on!"

Ironically, Jack found a position as a school teacher, on the same track as his namesake Jack. Or maybe it's not ironic. Maybe it was an attempt by robot Jack to make himself so much like the original Jack that the family would forget there ever was another (he may have a great big eye, but he'd never have the first Jack's great big nose). Regina decided that if Jack was going to be working, she might as well get a job for the first time since moving to the neighborhood (she'd maxed almost all of her skills, but never really put them to good use). Regina got a job on the medical track, working really weird hours, but she didn't care, because the family has the worst sleeping habits in the neighborhood.

Regina: "Debbie…hello!...I know you're in that trash can!"

While Regina was making decent money even at the lower levels of the medical track (not too low, mind you, due to the high level of skill she started her career with), being out of the house late at night and leaving everyone else to their own devices might not have been the best idea. See, without Regina around, while he wasn't at work, Jack had nobody else to occupy his time really, and he turned his attention back to Debbie. He may not have shown any signs of harmful intent toward Alex previously, but he was furious with him, and decided to let it be known one evening out by the hot tub. Quite unexpectedly, Jack walked up to Alex and started poking him, which eventually turned into Jack slapping him instead. Well, Alex is no pushover, and wasn't about to be slapped by some lousy tin can without slapping back…

Alex: "Ow! That kind of hurts my hand!"

Yeah, smart move there, Alex, since Jack clearly doesn't look advanced enough to have any "pain receptors". I imagine slapping a robot in the face probably would do more harm to the normal sim's hand than the robot, but nobody stops to think about these things when tempers start to flare. Jack eventually decided all the slapping stuff was for sissies, which, let's face it, it kind of is. He decided to give his "fight program" a little test run instead, and went to town on Alex. Well, the bad news there is that since Regina had maxed her body points before she activated Jack, he's one buff son of a gun, while Alex is just average. The fight was short and humiliating, and unlike Katrina Wilson, Alex didn't feel any need for a rematch - the outcome was sort of a forgone conclusion…

Austyn: "Can't you two just play nicely?"

The butt kicking was basically symbolic, and useless in the long run, because it didn't put Alex off of wooing Debbie, nor did Jack increase his own efforts to win Debbie's affection after demonstrating his "dominance". So, there you have it - robots can be petty and vengeful too (might be something to ask your local robot dealer about before investing in one yourself). Jack decided to finally turn on the charm full steam and see if Regina changed her mind about the whole not dating thing, and this time, it worked. By this point, I'd given up on canceling romantic interactions between the two before they occurred, I just cringed every time Jack decided he wanted to smooch with Regina. I was NOT going to be queuing any romantic interactions between the two of them myself, though…no "woo woo" for those two…

Jack: "Once you go Jack, you never go back!"

So here we have it - Regina and robot Jack paired up together, and Debbie and Alex together as an official "item". Suddenly, Austyn found himself playing the part of the "fifth wheel". The worst of it was that with the rest of the household partnered up together, nobody was really interested in getting out of the house like they once had to make the scene and cruise the clubs, and Austyn wasn't terribly interested in doing it all by himself. Now, a more intelligent type might have considered picking up the phone and calling some of the potentially interesting sims met during previous outings, but that never occurred to Austyn. Luckily for him, "Lady Bricks-alot" was on the rebound since Jack decided to shower his attention on Regina instead.

Austyn: "You're so much more than a doorstop to me!"

I know what you're thinking, but it's not any stranger of a relationship than Jack and the brick…or Jack and anyone else for that matter. The important thing is that everyone finally had someone else to occupy their time, no matter how strange some of the pairings might have been. Believe it or not, the pairing of Alex and Debbie is a bit of a strange one, even if it doesn't seem so on the surface. I know, they're both "human", so that's a good start, but Alex is really a highly intellectual type, and Debbie is…um…good at cleaning. And she likes to have fun. She's not very intellectual, though. Don't forget, she's really a blonde underneath that deceitfully dyed red hair...

Debbie: "Are you sure you don't want to play Battleship instead?"

Somehow, the two still seemed to get along smashingly. There's always been something a little strange to me about Alex, though I'm not sure what it is. Part of it might be that he doesn't have a lot of "background story" to him, since I've never really spent much time with the Kent family, but at the same time, there are quite a few families in the neighborhood that are that way, so it shouldn't really matter. Eventually, Alex stopped being part of the Kent household, as he decided everyone else in the city was living in Regina's house, and he might as well do the same. Of course, living in the house presented a challenge since robot Jack lived there too and hated Alex. Alex decided if he was going to protect himself from getting his butt kicked regularly, he'd better get in shape and fast. Debbie decided to join him to provide a little motivation, despite having a pretty high body score herself…

Alex: "I'm not sure if this is less painful than getting beaten on by Jack!"

Well, it was nice that Alex was trying to make an effort to take care of himself, but Regina, being the selfless type, realized that Jack was causing more trouble than he was worth for the rest of the household, and still wasn't doing any cleaning. Thus, she decided it was time to "power down" Jack for a while, until he was really, really needed. Guess that "robot romance" wasn't all that spectacular if she was willing to turn it off just like that. That, or she liked the idea of being able to switch off "her guy" when she didn't need him and start him up again when she did. I know a few women that would find that a really attractive concept. Anyway, before we delve too deeply into all that anti-guy stuff, it's time to draw this post to a close. Tune in next time as we find out what Amy and Clarence Andrews are up to since we last heard from them. You can bet it will be more of the usual weirdness…See you then!


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