The Sims 2: Pets

The Sims 2: Pets Review for PSP

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Love and care for your new best friend in The Sims 2: Pets.

Review Verdict Read Review
6Out of 10
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More pets find their way to a handheld
More pets find their way to a handheld

More pets find their way to a handheld

Having a pet in video game form has become all the rage. Since Nintendo unleashed Nintendogs everyone and his dog (excuse the pun) wants in on the action, so it's no surprise that the legendary Sims series wants in. The Sims 2 Pets on PSP is almost a direct port of the game on PlayStation 2 and GameCube, and therefore plays like last year's The Sims 2, but adds pets into the mix and features some nice AI improvements that help improve the overall console Sims experience. Sadly, it also suffers from one near game-breaking PSP only feature.

If you've played a console version of The Sims before you'll know what to expect. It's all about achieving life goals, whether that be a long-term thing like getting a good job, or something very much in the present, like simply eating some food to ease hunger. As the title of this game suggests, pets are now part of the family, and each is treated like a Sim, albeit a rather limited one that can't get a job and needs constant looking after.

The variety of pets on offer is really the game's biggest weakness. Given that pets are the focus of the game, a selection that's limited to dogs and cats is rather disappointing. You can create your animal from a number of different breeds and there are numerous appearance criteria that you can tweak to give your pet an individual look - including, if you're one of those cruel people, pet clothes. The number of breeds on offer isn't bad, but a few more species would have been preferable.

How your pet looks is just one aspect of it though; how it behaves is the key. As in real life, how you treat your pet during its early years will shape its personality. This is important as a bad pet isn't ideal to have around the house and it's not likely to get on well with other pets down the park, especially if you make it into a psychotic maniac. It's very tricky to train your pet though, as it takes constant attention, so if your Sims have jobs it means less time for little poochy.

Actions need to be carried out as soon as you see your little darling doing something naughty, in order to hammer home that destroying the house isn't good. Each time this happens you need to go through a rather long disciplining process, and it takes a really long time before the bad behaviour trait is trained out of your pet. You could alternatively encourage bad behaviour, but that might not meet your Sims' social needs.

The pets add a new dimension to the classic Sims gameplay

The pets add a new dimension to the classic Sims gameplay

Focussing on people and character interaction is also possible, and this area has been enhanced over the previous console version of The Sims 2 thanks to improved artificial intelligence. You only get a single neighbourhood and downtown area to play in, but it's no different to previous console Sims 2 games, so shouldn't come as a huge surprise to anyone. Various bonus items can unlocked by spending pet points on toys for your pets, and these should keep fans occupied for a fair while.

So far, so good for the PSP port, but now comes the near crippling PSP only feature: an abundance of loading. Players of The Sims 2 Pets on the PSP will have to suffer 3-4 seconds of loading almost every time they open a menu or attempt to interact with something in the game. In PSP reviews the biggest complaint is often lengthy loading times, but here the issue is the frequency of pauses. You'll get used to it after a while, but plenty of players won't be as lenient. Strangely for a PSP game there are no multiplayer game modes at all, which admittedly isn't a huge problem, but surprising nonetheless.

The Sims 2 Pets isn't anything more than The Sims 2 on consoles with pets. It feels like an expansion pack, and if that's what you want, you won't be disappointed. Overall gameplay improvements make Pets a better game than The Sims 2 was last year, and animal lovers will no doubt spend hours creating their ultimate cat or dog, but the PSP game is severely hampered by frequent loading.

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10 Comments

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gamerjinno's Avatar

gamerjinno

This game is very fun and very cool. You can train your pets but,It's very iretating becuz our pets can meesup your trashcan and you can't overbuild your house!
Posted 08:08 on 29 December 2009
hicks's Avatar

hicks

the sims 2 pets psp is enjoying alot of items to buy so that keeps you acoupied if you know what i mean keeping your pet happy is just diffucult and complete fun and getting jobs and paying bills is entertaning keeping high friend levels not so much fun but if your fan of pets or sims you will love it choice of clothing and pets huge!!!!
Posted 19:40 on 13 December 2009
sims 2 fan's Avatar
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sims 2 fan

I need help on how to breed cats and dogs on the psp version of the sims 2 pets, and only if you can. can you have birds on the psp version!!!!!!!!!!
Posted 20:35 on 20 January 2009
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Mr. Cool

I use the game often though how do you unlock the other homes that are available in the layout section in the PSP version? I am having trouble figuring this out for a long time now and I simply can't come to any conclusions or solutions. I was thinking that you may have to achieve goals and all needs but Im not sure, Can anyone help?
Posted 22:35 on 23 December 2008
gamenerd's Avatar
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gamenerd

its cool but i don't know how to get to more shops but its good but i hate the space the pets take
Posted 21:28 on 05 February 2008
tommy's Avatar
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tommy

it is soooo cool and now im getting the new sims on psp and i cant w8 but in the sims 2 pets is cool but how do u die in it lol
Posted 17:09 on 16 June 2007
Weekend_off's Avatar

Weekend_off

people like different thing's,but i spend good lot of money on this and i didnt like it guite so much <<<<<=)
wasted my life saving's =)......
i dont recommend buing psp version =p its just ..baddish
Posted 18:31 on 18 January 2007
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Shelbi

I have the playstation 2 version and the psp version of this game ,but their deffinently differn't than each
other. The psp game is boring :( Not that good of graphics and more confusing than the ps2 version!
If you have a ps2, BUY IT ON PS2 :D trust me you will
like it better that the psp version!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Posted 23:04 on 10 January 2007
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robert

i know it is but my hanheld game is a totally different version
Posted 08:22 on 07 January 2007
loopyx567's Avatar

loopyx567

this game is kinda boring and its kinda cool

Posted 00:35 on 04 January 2007

Game Stats

The Sims 2: Pets
6
Out of 10
The Sims 2: Pets
  • Engrossing once you get into it
  • Essentially the home console game on the PSP
  • No PSP only features
  • Frequent pauses for loading
Agree? Disagree? Get Involved!
Release Date: 15/12/2006
Platforms: PSP , PC , Wii , DS , PS2 , GBA , Cube
Developer: Maxis
Publisher: Electronic Arts
Genre: Sim Clone
No. Players: 1-2
Rating: PEGI 7+
Site Rank: 16,328 11688
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