I'm aware that I talk about The Sims a lot; in fact, that's kind of how I ended up in this job. So rather than go into detail here about the original game itself (although if you want to hear more about it, I've got something pretty cool in the pipeline for you, so watch this space!), I've decided to use this HYP to talk about the brilliant TV adverts that first brought it to my attention.
Back in the year 2000, I'd already played a fair few video games in my then-short life, but I'd never really been the driving force behind purchasing one. Even kid-oriented favourites like Lego Island and Detective Barbie had, I recall, been given to me in the way that toys just sort of arrive in childrens' lives sometimes. That changed when I saw one of these adverts, which I highly encourage you to check out for yourself right now:
I knew immediately that I needed to play this game. I was just on the cusp of beginning to outgrow playing with dolls, and this ad campaign for The Sims presented me with the concept of a more grown-up digital toybox. My make-believe games with Barbie, Polly Pocket, et al had been taking on a darker flavour recently, due to my burgeoning obsession with TV shows like Buffy and X-Files. And now, here was a game that let you play house with your dream spouse and throw a hot tub murder party for the Grim Reaper! My 10-year-old self regarded this as the absolute best of both worlds, and you know what? At 32, I'm still inclined to agree with her.