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Has there ever been a canonical explanation for the technological mismatch between all 3 Sims games?

There is something that always bothered me and that was the technology mismatch between The Sims, The Sims 2, and The Sims 3 which would have been okay if they were chronologically in that order. However, The Sims 3 is a prequel to the original title, yet as far as I found there was no canonical explanation for why all of the sims in the third game have cellphones and technology that closely resembles today while those in The Sims don't at all and what seems to be just reintroduced to that in the world of The Sims 2. This is probably the most noticeable example, but there were other things I noticed that just doesn't align with the chronological events in the overall timeline.

Please tell me there is a canonical reason for this among other things or else this is really going to bother me.

To see a timeline of all events. I have provided the link to the unofficial Sims wiki below.


  • igazorigazor Posts: 17,412 Member
    edited September 7
    I don't know how canonical this is, but the reason sims in TS1 do not have cellphones and they aren't as important in TS2 as they are in TS3 is that the technology was not as widely in use in 1999-2000 and 2003-04 as it was in 2008-09, which is when the three games were developed. I mean, certainly we had cellphones in 2000 but here in the US where things were a bit slower to catch on than perhaps in other countries, only around 20-25% of the population had subscriptions and the coverage in many areas of our country was horrible. I didn't know of anyone who would even have considered dropping their landlines in favor of cellphones back then, yet today no one would blink at such a decision. By 2009 that had shifted forward considerably.

    That's a reflection more on what the player gets to experience than the sims. While we can attempt to put the sims games in chronological order by way of events and genealogy, we can't really assign particular Earth decades to them as the wiki tries to do as a lot of things like technology, cars, music, and styles of the times are not really going to match up. For those of us who play many generations within an ongoing game, things get even more out of alignment as except maybe for the Uni EP smartphones the technology sims get to enjoy doesn't really change over time in TS3 until we jump them into the future with ITF, for those of us who choose to.
    Post edited by igazor on
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  • lzbthnndglslzbthnndgls Posts: 164 Member
    @igazor Wonderful explanation! Couldn't have said it better myself. OP, definitely the biggest thing to take note of was when the game was developed and when cellphones became prolific. Another thing to take note of is that the Sims live in a different world. If you really want to rationalize the timeline, pretend that there was a nuclear war (like Adventure Time is on Earth, but there was a nuclear war and now things are strange) and they lost certain technological advances when the power went out.
    Just started Writing my first Sims 4 Story. Check it out here: Meet Me in the Middle
  • FreakAboutSimsFreakAboutSims Posts: 784 Member
    None of the explanations in this thread resolves anything other than stating the actual reason for things. I'm looking for any canon (you know, in-game) for why things are the way they are and not an actual reason. I also knew somebody was going to bring up the nuclear war explanation which really only seems to logically to the official lore unless it's sometime after The Sims 2 and before The Sims 3 Into the Future. Plus evidence for a nuclear war seem absent in most worlds to even suggest such a thing occurred. Nobody has discovered any clues in any game, expansion pack, or stuff pack that might hint to any canonical explanations?
  • MikezumiMikezumi Posts: 47,365 Member
    If you really want a canonical explanation, make one up. I'm pretty sure 99% of the "canon" out there has been ;) Since there's no way that TS3 is truly a prequel to The Sims because, technology aside, there are way too many discrepancies, just think of them all as alternate realities or just stand alone games :p
  • KeiomestreKeiomestre Posts: 140 Member
    I doubt there is a canonical explanation and it gets worse when Sims 4 and console versions of the game get included in the mix.

    Remember there is a time machine in Ambitions and also time travel in Into The Future, so any time paradox could make cellphones disappear from The Sims 1 and only be reinvented on The Sims 2. Or there was a law on Sims 1 prohibiting cellphones :smile: .

    Anyway, The Sims 1 had teleporters and robots that cleaned houses, so, in a way it was more technologically advanced than our world. Also, teleporters disappeared on Sims 2 (pretty sure they were hazardous and got banned :smiley: ).
    ..... ..... ..... ..... My favorite Sims 3 family: THE ENFADONHOS!..... ..... ..... .....
  • emorrillemorrill Posts: 5,727 Member
    I don't think the 3 games were ever meant to coincide with each other - have anything to do with a timeline. I think they were just made to cater to the fun and technology of the times in which they were released; made to appeal to the interests of the current rising generation. (Cause let's face it, EA is in the business to make money). And adding in references to iconic characters certainly helped keep the fans coming back and the fun going. ;)

    @igazor and @Mikezumi really took the words out of my mouth. :star:
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  • fxchrfxchrfxchrfxchr Posts: 311 Member
    emorrill wrote: »
    I don't think the 3 games were ever meant to coincide with each other...

    I agree. There's no "progression" from TS1 to TS4. They just did the same game over again four times.

    Firby nurbs!
  • cocococo Posts: 2,438 Member
    I don't think even the developers can explain a canonical timeline. That's probably why they said that TS4 takes place in an alternate time. Time in the game doesn't work the same as in real life so you can't apply normal logic to it. You won't be able to find a canon reason why things are the way they are because it's a sandbox game and establishing plot would create limits to how sims react within their world. Sorry I just don't think there is a big elaborate explanation to it all :frowning:
  • KevinL5275KevinL5275 Posts: 1,901 Member
    Was there a reason why The Sims 2 is in the past, and The Sims 3 is also in the past?
    I'm a 44 year old married man, with a beautiful wife, a cat, and a simverted personality.
  • KeiomestreKeiomestre Posts: 140 Member
    edited September 12
    KevinL5275 wrote: »
    Was there a reason why The Sims 2 is in the past, and The Sims 3 is also in the past?
    The Sims 2 isn’t on the past. It is supposed to be 25 years after Sims 1. Just look at the Goth family and how Cassandra became adult and Mortimer an old man.
    ..... ..... ..... ..... My favorite Sims 3 family: THE ENFADONHOS!..... ..... ..... .....
  • mw1525mw1525 Posts: 846 Member
    @FreakAboutSims - Keep in mind, everything I'm about to write is just a 'Theory' I'm working on based on actual facts and clues found within the game or written as 'official' history.

    The more I dig into the Sims Universe, the more it appears the story lines of this game is built on the theory of a paradoxical space-time anomaly.

    It is a story of the mixing of two universes and not solely about the Sims of SimNation. One story tells of the history of the Sims and the other tells of the history of the 'Aliens'. The combined stories would make up the games. I don't have all the bits of information gathered yet, just enough to show a connection in some key areas.

    As near as I can figure it, the true 'present moment' of the Sims takes place in ITF (normal timeline). An event happened in TS2 which caused a space-time anomaly which rippled through specific connective points of the Multi-Verse of SimNation which was the catalyst for the 'unusual' events which followed. The ripple ceased in the normal timeline of ITF. In present day (ITF) the world faces an unstable time loop which threatens them.

    However, the time lines are blurred and continuously crossing.

    As for how this could possibly effect which of the usable technology appears (or doesn't) in the games, cell phones, computers, food replicators and teleporters. It's my best guess this is where the two stories 'overlap' as the actual paths are undefined.

    As with any true 'paradoxical anomaly' story, the fragments of story are told out of sequence but, the connective clues are all there. It all depends on where the player enters the game. I hope my theory has given you a potential explanation to the seemingly disconnected events of history.

    On a more realistic note, the people writing the 'histories' are able to choose which lines of the story they want to expand and insert those expansions (new details) into future games. Which means, they may find a potential story line of something which originated in the Sims 1 and insert clues or more information about that event in the Sims 3. If the storytelling is done correctly, the final clues to the full story could be written into the next Sims game
  • king_of_simcity7king_of_simcity7 Posts: 23,323 Member
    Roaring Heights is set in the 30s. Sims have mobile phones. I don't take much notice of timezones like that :smile:
  • Nikkei_SimmerNikkei_Simmer Posts: 5,524 Member
    Never been able to make sense of the time periods within the Sims timeline. All I know is that Sims 3 was roughly 25 yrs before Sims 1 and Sims 2 was roughly 25-30 years after Sims 1.

    I tend to play whatever scenario that comes into my head so I don’t bother listening to particular time periods.
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  • InfraGreenInfraGreen Posts: 6,084 Member
    The Sims is about holding a mirror up to our own lives first and following a chronological storyline second not even second, let's be real here.

    TS3 especially really loved to dabble in the idea of time travel too.
    The demon whispers in my ear, the hurt has found a home in here.


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  • Finbar659Finbar659 Posts: 1,205 Member
    Just think of all of each sims series as a parallel universe!
  • king_of_simcity7king_of_simcity7 Posts: 23,323 Member
    Keiomestre wrote: »
    KevinL5275 wrote: »
    Was there a reason why The Sims 2 is in the past, and The Sims 3 is also in the past?
    The Sims 2 isn’t on the past. It is supposed to be 25 years after Sims 1. Just look at the Goth family and how Cassandra became adult and Mortimer an old man.

    I like the bit where they accidentally deleted Bella so made a story line out of it. A Bella Goth Sim appears as an NPC in Strange Town to hint that she was abducted by aliens and ended up having her memory wiped. She was last seen on Don Lothario's balcony and he was in an affair with both Dina and Nina and they have an alien in their family tree. Dina wanted money and so she wanted to marry Mortimer but needed Bella out of the way first.

    I like how they also had Daniel Pleasant have an affair with a few Sims as well so the story lines played into each other. Don was meant to marry Cassandra but Darren Dreamer wanted to be with her. Sad Bob and Betty Newbie had passed away by this point.
  • KarritzKarritz Posts: 19,722 Member
    I think when sims with names that match up to indicate possible family relationships with sims in other Sims games, in in other Sims worlds, it opens up a possibility for each player to make up their own story as to if there is any relationship or timeline or none at all.
  • Damienf519Damienf519 Posts: 6,496 Member
    edited September 21
    I remember reading about how the Sims 2 is a sequel to the Sims 1, and Sims 3 is a prequel to Sims 1. Its pretty confusing, so I'm kind of glad they just started the story over again with the Sims 4. Maybe the reason why the technology is more advanced in the Sims 3, is that the technology also existed in the Sims 1 era within the Sims universe, but we just never see it in game. I don't think that the Sims take place in our universe anyway, since there is no "Sim Nation" on this planet for one thing. I think its an alternate sci fi fantasy world, of some sort, especially given all the completely make believe things in the game. I am not sure at what point in the past the original Sims' time line diverged from our own however. There aren't too many examples of real world historical events being mentioned in the Sims games, that's probably because even the ones that aren't really unpleasant to think about, would still make the game feel more like it was taking place in one particular part of the real world that many of players wouldn't know much about or feel much of a connection to.
  • Damienf519Damienf519 Posts: 6,496 Member
    Roaring Heights is set in the 30s. Sims have mobile phones. I don't take much notice of timezones like that :smile:

    Does it really? I just assumed it was a world that was designed to look like it was inspired by the 1930s, not that it was actually supposed to be the 1930s. If it was supposed to be the 1930s, than that definitely doesn't make sense.
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