The Sims took the world by storm in 2000, hooking gamers and non-gamers alike into its home life simulation on its way to become the best-selling PC game franchise of all time.

People loved the way you could design your own characters, build your dream home, and then watch your creations live our their curious digital lives. In a world where free will is optional, you can prod the characters in whatever direction you please, though their base needs will need addressing sooner or later. It’s a virtual soap opera in which you can be both the star and the omniscient director.

Fast forward eighteen years, and we’ve finally got a full-featured Sims game for iPhone and iPad. Released this week after a year of player testing, The Sims Mobile promises everything you fondly remember from the original games, compressed into a mobile package. Sure, there have been licensed Sims titles on the App Store before, but they’ve never before attempted to cram so much content and PC-style gameplay into a single game. There’s a lot to do here.

One concession to the modern age is the fact that in order to reach as many users as possible, the game has gone freemium. Meaning there’s no download cost, but you’ll have to deal with timers and virtual currencies if you want to achieve your dream home. Patient players should have no problems, but those who want to unlock the coolest furniture, best jobs, and most stylish clothes may have to open their real-life wallets to speed up proceedings. Your own mileage may vary!

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