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Hints or tips for poverty sim n00bs?

All right, I'm at a complete loss, so this seemed like the best place to ask.

I just started a poverty challenge, but I have no idea how to keep my sim from starving to death. Does anyone have any hints or tips? I haven't been able to track any down on google.

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( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
engram_au
Jan. 25th, 2010 11:16 pm (UTC)
1. Use the community lots!

So many people forget this. You can grab the "poverty legal" community lots from MTS or you can build your own. The "poverty legal" lots have everything you need most of the time - toilet, shower and BBQ for free hot dogs.

2. If you have Seasons - fish at home!

It's actually buried deep deep deep in the original rules on MTS but while you are not allowed to fish on community lots, you can fish and sell the fish that you catch at home. The cheapest fishable pond costs around 10 simoleons, which is more than affordable for a poverty sim. Once your sim has caught a couple of fish, buy a wall segment. It's useful in so many ways: you can put a toilet against it and you can hang mounted fish on it. Mounted fish cost more to sell than "raw" fish straight out of the inventory. In order to increase the fish in price, you need to place the fish on the wall and then go into Live Mode for at least a second (ie. it needs to be unpaused and time must flow on the lot even for a second) and then you can go into Buy Mode and sell the mounted fish off the wall.

3. If you have Seasons - grow your own food!

You're using my hint to fish at home, right? So start growing your own food because with the fish you sell you can afford a fridge :) And even the worst quality fresh food will feed your sim better than badly cooked regular food. Plus if you have fresh food you don't have to keep restocking the fridge :)

ETA: I just started a poverty challenge, literally a couple of weeks ago. You can read the first couple of entries here: http://engram-au.livejournal.com/tag/mckinley I describe quite clearly how my sim survives and what she needs to avoid and what she can do.

Edited at 2010-01-25 11:18 pm (UTC)
makemerun
Jan. 25th, 2010 11:24 pm (UTC)
Thanks for the tips! I do have Seasons, but I was for some reason thinking that ponds were illegal.

I don't EVER play community lots, (IDK why, I just am too lazy I guess) but that's a fantastic idea.
engram_au
Jan. 26th, 2010 12:49 am (UTC)
You just have to visit them at the beginning, you don't actually have to "play with community lots". Also, you need a community lot to buy clothing unless you're happy with what the game puts the sims into when they age up. This is supposed to be a challenge with no cheating so the Shop At Home rack with free clothing is totally out as it's against the spirit of the challenge.

You can't fish on community lots but you can on home lots. Searching has been disabled on MTS due to high server load at the moment so I cannot find the link, but there is actually a post in the original thread started by Ellatrue on MTS that states that fishing on home lots and selling fish caught on the home lot is OK. The main rules post only mentions no fishing on comm lots but there is a clarification buried somewhere in the 33 pages of discussion.
madame_ugly
Jan. 26th, 2010 01:23 pm (UTC)
Super simple way?

Inventory. More specific, a pizza in your inventory.

When you first start out you might not be able to keep your sim's mood up enough so they'll fish (which is a great loophole). So you need to buy a pizza and stash it in your inventory.

Don't have the cash for a pizza? Afraid the delivery gal/guy will steal some of your few posessions as a result? No problem. Call for the pizza then stash all your valuables in your inventory. When the pizza gal/guy arrives they'll bitch you out for not having money (or anything to take) but they'll leave the pie.

Now, make that pie LAST. Don't overfeed your sim. If the hunger is really low, eat 2-3 pieces MAX. Just enough so you're out of the danger zone and your sim will focus on other tasks.

One ill-gotten pie should last many days, especially if you make sure your sim goes to work a bit hungry (they'll get a free meal at work/school) and you don't bring out the stolen pie when guests come over.

(yes, some people find this too "cheaty" but I'm not one of them--I don't find it anymore "cheaty" then the fishing loophole or sneaking off to a comm lot to eat free hot dogs)
makemerun
Jan. 26th, 2010 04:09 pm (UTC)
Ooh I forgot about the inventory loophole with food spoilage.

Stealing pizza is kinda cheaty, but I think it's less cheaty than fishing because of the "realism" perspective. Which is more likely, a poor person fishing in their backyard and selling the fish, or a poor person stealing food?
madame_ugly
Jan. 26th, 2010 05:50 pm (UTC)
My beef with the fishing is it's just too easy to make money that way.

When I start a new poverty, I make the first generation really suffer and don't allow the fishing loophole. Instead, I have my founder (on their first day) check the paper for jobs. Whatever job is the highest paying, I use that income figure and allow my sim to "dig for treasure" or "comb beach" (one or the other, never both) once a week. If they dig up something equal to or less than the daily income from the job I selected, then they can sell it. If the item is worth more than the set number, it gets put in inventory and forgotten.

Or sometimes I'll start with a romance sim and let them only earn money by dating. They have to keep the flowers but if they get a gift they can sell it. The last time I did that, I had about 10 top dates but only ended up with two gifts, so it still kept my family pretty poor.
makemerun
Jan. 26th, 2010 06:39 pm (UTC)
Well, Bon Voyage is the only mac expansion I don't have, so my sims won't be looking for treasure anytime soon.

LOL @ the dating sim. Again with art imitating life, right? Okay, so you might not get a stereo IRL, but same concept.

On another note, I'm finding that I don't care that my sim keeps getting fired every day for poor job performance, as long as they get the free meal, amirite?
madame_ugly
Jan. 26th, 2010 07:28 pm (UTC)
The treasure digging and beach combing are the two best parts of BV (well, and Bigfoot--he's pretty sweet).

To keep it more of a challenge, I also limit how many plots of crops/trees can be planted. I limit it to two plots per crop and one of each type of tree. And I try not to buy those items until my sims roll the want.

Re dating sim: That's what I thought. It's like prostitution, really. My sims aren't above working in the oldest profession!

Speaking of professions, I HATED when my sims would get promotions. I swear I pick "correct" chance cards more in a poverty challenge then any other time. Drives me NUTS.

And I really get on the kids to maintain grades. They need that free meal at school.

Also, I get really morbid with poverties and both loathe and anticipate the death of the founder. It's a HUGE payday for the rest of the family but makes the challenge way too easy.
makemerun
Jan. 27th, 2010 04:14 am (UTC)
Have you seen any guidelines that gives Pets rules? If adopting pets is allowed, then that would be an interesting twist, because they can sell the strays that they adopt.

It'd actually be interesting to, instead of holding a job, have a sim set up a sort of pet business (without actual OFB business setup, obviously) where they adopt strays, train them, and then sell them.

Or has all of this already been discussed and banned?
madame_ugly
Jan. 27th, 2010 01:31 pm (UTC)
I've never read huge discussions on the rules for poverty challenges (like the crazy threads you see for apocolypse challenges, for example). I just found the basic rules and worked from them.

For me, I wouldn't have a problem with using pets for cash. I prefer a poverty founder to NOT have a conventional job, so wooing a stray and then training them and getting them work would be a good money making venue (and I wouldn't tie the "can't get promotions" rule to pets, since pet jobs aren't that high paying even if they get to the top). I'd even breed pets to sell (via the regular pie menu option) or give away (or keep in the household and get jobs).

I don't think I'd open a business (OFB style) with a founder, though. Only because businesses have the potential to make too much money. I like trying to keep my founder as financially strapped as possible (since the founding sim is really the only one you CAN keep poor, since future generations will benefit from the insurance payouts when the founder dies).

By keeping the founder really poor, the next generation has to struggle a bit, too (at least until the founder dies). So children get to work in the garden/fishing while teens get jobs or start dating for gifts. Once a gen two sim got to adult, I'd have no beefs with starting a business. BUT, I'd run it as a community lot because it would be more expensive to acquire/run.

If you want to really explore different EP options, you should check out the awesimsauce challenge (it has an LJ comm). It's a ten generation legacy style challenge but each generation has an EP based theme (and even though you don't have BV, you could still do a modified version). You could start the whole thing off as a poverty, then transition into awesimsauce after the poverty part is over. I'm a big fan of doubling up challenges.
makemerun
Jan. 27th, 2010 10:46 pm (UTC)
I decided to go for it, and I'm really enjoying selling the pets. She's making quite a bit of money selling pets, but less than she would be making if she had a job, because it requires output for dishes, toys, etc. She had to buy a bathtub to replace her shower, because no one would buy a smelly dog, which required her to sell another pet early, so that she could pay her bills before the Repo man came... there's a lot of trade-off and compromise, and it's really interesting.

I am ALL for stacking challenges, too. I love doing that. My poverty sim is actually the non-heir orange of a Rainbow-Pyramid challenge. (Rainbow legacy, but with generations like the pyramid challenge. So, 1 red child, 2 orange children, 3 in the yellow generation, etc.)

I'd never seen the Awesomesauce Legacy Challenge before. It certainly seems to live up to its name. I'll definitely have to do that one. :D Though, of course, it will remind me how bitter I am that Aspyr and Maxis broke up after BV. I want Freetime sooooo bad.
madame_ugly
Jan. 28th, 2010 01:16 pm (UTC)
Maybe that's what I really like about poverty challenges. The trade offs. You can have a toilet or a roof but not both! I also love building funky piece meal houses. And the floor dividers? They are LOVE. I can wall off a bathroom without buying a wall, just put down floor dividers. (and if I don't tile off the floor, they can dig up treasure on the bathroom "floor" all year round!).

I've never heard of a pyramid challenge. That's a nice twist.

(I'm also a huge fan of build a city challenges--they're very long and drawn out but you really get to explore all the EPs you have, especially OFB--that EP has a LOT going on)
makemerun
Jan. 27th, 2010 10:59 pm (UTC)
OH another hint: floor dividers are much, much, cheaper than doors. I am in simlove with those things now.
madame_ugly
Jan. 28th, 2010 01:18 pm (UTC)
*snort* I saw this after I posted my reply.

I adore floor dividers.

And another helpful tip: Awnings. They're cheaper than walls, too, and can protect not only sims but crops from the elements (except temperature--sims still get cold but they'll sleep on through a rain storm).
( 14 comments — Leave a comment )

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