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The Sims 3: Gardening Guide
/*===========================================================================*\ | | | The Sims 3 - Guide to Gardening | | Version 0.5 (2009-06-21) | | | | James Lambeth (Xafine) | | | \*===========================================================================*/ ++ Note (Please Read) ++ To anybody reading this guide: First of all, thank you for reading. This is my first guide, so I hope it's a good one! If you have any comments or queries, have a look at the contact section. I will endeavour to read all emails sent to me, and reply if appropriate. Secondly, I have a favour to ask. As some of you may know (particularly any Australian's reading this), Electronic Arts is currently running a competition to find the 'Ultimate Aussie Fan'. As part of this competition, entrants are required to gain the support of as many people as possible â this is where you can help! Please offer your support by visiting the following URL. It only takes a couple of minutes: http://www.sims3fan.com.au/?cryptix If you're having trouble giving your support: 1. Go to the URL provided above. 2. Click the "Become a Supporter" button on the left hand side. 3. Complete the form, making sure you rate the page by clicking the moodlet icons (the right-most icon gives the largest score). 4. 4. Click "Become a Supporter", and then verify your email address by clicking the link in the email you ere sent. Thanks, everyone, for giving your support and reading this guide. /*===========================================================================*\ | Table of Contents [S01.00] | |*===========================================================================*| | | | Table of Contents............................................. [S01.00] | | Revision History.............................................. [S02.00] | | Introduction.................................................. [S03.00] | | Becoming a Gardener........................................... [S04.00] | | - Choosing Your Traits.................................... [S04.01] | | - Changing Your Traits.................................... [S04.02] | | Basic Topics in Gardening..................................... [S05.00] | | - Levelling Up............................................ [S05.01] | | - Your First Garden....................................... [S05.02] | | - Interactions............................................ [S05.03] | | - Plantables.............................................. [S05.04] | | - Sprinklers.............................................. [S05.05] | | Advanced Topics in Gardening.................................. [S06.00] | | Contact....................................................... [S07.00] | | Acknowledgements.............................................. [S08.00] | | Copyright and Redistribution.................................. [S09.00] | | Appendices.................................................... [S10.00] | | - My Experiment With Bookworms............................ [S10.01] | | | \*===========================================================================*/ /*===========================================================================*\ Revision History [S02.00] \*===========================================================================*/ Version 0.5 (2009-06-21): First version of the guide submitted to GameFAQs.Com. Guide created using Microsoft Word 2007, and Notepad ++. /*===========================================================================*\ Introduction [S03.00] \*===========================================================================*/ Welcome to my first ever guide. Let me begin by answering a fundamental question: why am I writing this? Since I started playing Sims 3 almost a week ago I have noticed an obvious deficiency in the amount of information related to the game. The game did not come with a set of instructions, and third party guides do not seem to contain the kind of information I've be searching for. For a game like The Sims, I found this to be rather perplexing. After all, the game has been available (although, not legally) for a number of weeks. Why hasn't anyone written a solid guide yet? My solution is a simple one. From today I will be collecting as much information as I can in regards to the gardening skill; and developing a guide which is easy to understand and extremely comprehensive. I do this not because I care about the "gaming community", but because I have desire for perfection. Through writing such a guide I believe I can demonstrate a level of competency well above that of the casual gamer, and hopefully I can be the first one to do so. Another question â why gardening? Honestly, I find gardening to be the most complex skill within the game. Unlike many of the other skills within the game, it is not straight forward. Of course you can just plant a seed and wait for it to grow; but that is ineffective if you want to get the best out of the skill. The other obvious reason is that gardening is a great source of income within the game; provided you are persistent. At the highest level, gardening is fairly simple â it's making it to the top which is hard. /*===========================================================================*\ Becoming a Gardener [S04.00] \*===========================================================================*/ Like all skills within The Sims 3, gardening can be performed by anyone â but there are certain things which can make your gardening experience more fruitful. This section attempts to identify some key areas to developing a "perfect" gardener. ----------------------- Choosing Your Traits [S04.01] ------------------------- Much like you, Sims have a set of qualities which define their personalities. These qualities are known as "traits" and can be obtained at various points in the game â but most easily when you originally create your Sim. While I will not provide a comprehensive discussion of all traits in the game, I feel there are some notable traits which may assist you in your gardening, the first of which I consider to be the most essential: -- Green Thumb: "Green Thumbs are the best gardeners. They find solace and comfort in their gardens and can revive plants in the worst conditions." There are a number of advantages to possessing the Green Thumb trait. Your Sim will be able to develop the gardening skill much quicker than other Sims, and will have the added ability to revive plants. Furthermore, they can talk to plants (instead of people) to fill up their "social" need, and they start with a gardening book! There are several other traits which may help you to become an expert gardener. While you don't need them, they are certainly valuable. Here they are: -- Angler: "Anglers catch fish better than any other Sims. They also enjoy fishing more than anyone else." Great description... Not. Basically, we will be using Fish as our source of fertiliser. I am not sure whether or not the Angler trait really helps with fishing (i.e. increases the likelihood of catching a perfect fish), but I will assume it does. If anyone has any more information, with evidence, I would like to know. =) -- Bookworm: "Bookworms have a passion for reading that surpasses their other desires. They also tend to become good writers." The logic behind this is simple: bookworms can read faster than other Sims, hence they can learn (from books) faster than other Sims can. While you do not have to read to develop your skills as a gardener, it is generally an effective method to learn new skills, and thus beneficial. See my experiment on Bookworms (S10.01) for more information. -- Handy: "Hand Sims are the best tinkerers. They will never fail when repairing or upgrading a household item, which makes electrical objects far less dangerous." One of the functions we may be involved in as gardeners is the upgrade of our sprinklers. The Handy trait may be of some assistance to us, but I'm unsure as to how much of an impact it has. It is always useful to have a Handy Sim, though! -- Lonely: "Loners enjoy time spent alone more than time spent with others. Quite shy, they never approach anyone who isn't a close friend. They prize their solitude and get nervous around large groups". Since you'll be spending a large amount of your time gardening, this trait ensures that you can maintain full social. You can always talk to your plants to raise your social, but this skill is equally effective. Unfortunately, it also detracts from other areas of game play (in my opinion), so be careful choosing it. -- Loves the Outdoors: "These Sims love spending time outdoors and find special joy amid nature." As a gardener, you will be spending plenty of time outdoors; whether it be tending to your vegetable patch, or hunting for rare seeds. Loves the Outdoors is a great way to ensure your Sim stays positive and happy! -- Slob: "Slobs constantly leave messes in their wake. To make matters worse, they won't offer to pick up or clean. Luckily, common filth won't offend their senses." Extended periods of time gardening tend to reduce hygiene rather quickly, even after gaining the "Dirt Defiant" lifetime reward. Having the Slob trait can greatly reduce the impact of this, but I don't think it's worth it unless you're living alone. The negatives far outweigh the positives. There are also several traits which are detrimental to gardening: -- Absent-Minded: "Absent-Minded Sims get lost in their thoughts and occasionally forget what they are doing or where they are going." Gardening is quite simple in that you do not have to keep clicking away, but being absent minded could change all of that. There's nothing I hate more than having my Sims getting interrupted, so here's a trait I definitely won't be using. -- Clumsy: "Clumsy Sims muck up life with shoddy footwork and poor planning." You don't want to be dropping all those fine fruits that you'll be producing, do you now? Honestly... I begin to wonder why these traits are in the game. I guess they'd make things incredibly interesting for some people. Once again, I don't know if this trait will actually affect your Sim. -- Couch Potato: "Couch Potatoes are perfectly happy sitting on the couch to watch TV and eat junk food. They'll need additional prodding to lead active lives." Gardening is a very active pastime. You don't want to be the kind of Sim who lazes about, do you?! Being a Couch Potato increases the amount of time your Sim spends sleeping, which means less time working on your garden! -- Hates the Outdoors: "Sims who Hate the Outdoors despise being outside and will remain indoors whenever possible." Obviously if your Sim hates the outdoors, they won't like gardening too much. Enough said. -- Neat: "Neat Sims always fine the time to clean, regardless of their mood. They are easily devastated by filthy surroundings, but will never leave a mess behind." Like I've already said a million times, you're going to be spending a lot of time in the garden, and you will get messy! Being a neat Sim will just put you in a bad mood. That's about it for the traits â but you still have one more question, don't you? You want to know what I would pick. I wouldn't really be playing the game just to garden â so I'd generally make my Sims more well rounded, probably adding the Ambitious trait for those faster promotions! For the perfect gardener, I'd recommend: 1. Angler 2. Bookworm 3. Green Thumb 4. Loves the Outdoors That leaves you with one choice of your own! ----------------------- Changing Your Traits [S04.02] ------------------------- I mentioned in the previous section that there are various points in the game where you are able to choose your traits â but you also have the ability to change them! First let me discuss when you can nominate them. Sims are restricted to the number of traits which they are allowed, with the maximum being five. The number of traits which a Sim is allowed to have varies, depending on the stage of life they are in, as follows: Baby/Toddler: 2 Child: 3 Teen: 4 oung Adult/Adult/Elder: 5 When you create your Sim you have the ability to nominate all of your traits, but once you've started you lose this privilege. In order to nominate your traits as you grow up (i.e. from baby to young adult), you must ensure that you maintain a positive mood for your Sim. When pregnant, you must ensure that the mother is in a satisfactory mood so that you may choose your newborn's traits. As a toddler, you must make sure you teach your toddler to walk, and as a child/teen you must make sure you're in a good mood, and that you complete your homework! If you don't meet these requirements, the game will automatically nominate traits for your Sim â which may be positive or negative. It just so happens that you can also change your traits. Your Sim has something known as "Lifetime Happiness". If you earn 20,000 lifetime happiness points, you can get the "Mid-life crisis" award, which enables you to reselect your traits â this is particularly useful if you want to get rid of some traits (such as "Bookworm") which you no longer need. As far as I know, there is no limit as to how many times you can use this reward. /*===========================================================================*\ Basic Topics in Gardening [S05.00] \*===========================================================================*/ Gardening in itself is not a difficult skill to perform, but its complexity makes it a difficult skill to master. This section outlines some of the fundementals in gardening, hopefully to some level of detail. ---------------------------- Levelling Up [S05.01] ---------------------------- Your level in the gardening skill dictates a number of things, including what kind of interaction you can have with your garden, and what kind of seeds you can plant. For this reason, it is highly recommended that you reach level ten gardening as quickly as possible, and the majority of this guide will assume you have already done so. Getting to level ten can be achieved in three ways: taking a class, reading books or creating and tending for a garden. I do not recommend the foremost option, as the classes are highly expensive (costing $400) and not really rewarding at later levels. If you want to take a gardening class, though, you can do so at the Landgraab Industries Science Facility (in Sunset Valley) or the Soil and Water Research Facility (in Riverview). The reason I do not recommend taking classes is that you don't need to take them in order to begin gardening - you garden or read a gardening book at level zero! Personally, I think the quickest experience can be gained by actually gardening, but you can't spend hours at a time doing this. The most time-effective way to level your gardening skill is probably to read. Reading, as with other skills, requires you to buy a few books. If you nominated the Green Thumb trait, you will start with "Gardening Vol. 1: The Watercan Chronicles", otherwise you have to purchase it, along with the other two books, from Divisadero Budget Books. The books you need are as follows: Gardening Vol. 1: The Watercan Chronicles $350 Gardening Vol. 2: Odor Free Fertilizer $500 Gardening Vol. 3: Gardening to Riches $750 Your Sim can read "Gardening Vol. 1" from levels 0 to 3, "Gardening Vol. 2" from levels 3 to 7, and "Gardening Vol. 3" from 7 to 10. Once you reach the maximum achievable level for each book, as with other skill books, you will no longer be able to read it. Put it on your bookshelf, and leave it for someone else. ------------------------- Your First Garden [S05.02] -------------------------- As an amateur gardener you will be able to plant a few different crops, which give you some basic produce (I will use this term to refer to both fruits and vegetables). These crops can be planted from seedlings (conveniently, you will gain a few when you reach level one gardening); or from fully grown produce. I suggest growing from produce, as you can purchase it quite cheaply from EverFresh Delights Supermarket, and it is a reasonably high quality (always being "nice quality"). Here's a list of produce you can purchase: +---------------+-------+-------------------+ | Produce | Cost | Level (To Plant) | +---------------+-------+-------------------+ | Tomato | $ 5 | 0 | | Lettuce | $ 5 | 0 | | Apple | $ 6 | 0 | | Grapes | $ 6 | 0 | | Onion | $11 | 5 | | Potato | $11 | 5 | | Lime | $14 | 5 | | Watermelon | $14 | 5 | | Bell Pepper | $18 | 7 | | Garlic | $23 | 7 | +---------------+-------+-------------------+ These ten items make up over half (~53%) of plantable crops, but you can only plant four of them at level zero. Once purchased, these items will end up in your personal inventory (which is inside your "Sim Panels"). Planting your seedlings or produce is simple: with your inventory open, click the item you wish to plant, and then select the "Plant" action. You then have to nominate a spot to plant the item. Locations where you can plant the item will be indicated by a green square appearing around the item (as with all item placement), and locations where you cannot plant the item will be indicated with by a red square. You also have the option of planting multiple items by choosing the "Plant Many" option and then placing each item individually (meaning you don't have to go back to your inventory each time). Once you have placed your desired number of plants, you can press Escape or Backspace to release the item (if you have not placed all of the items in the nominated stack), and your Sim will begin planting. If you want to choose a specific item to plant from a stack, you can open the stack by clicking the left corner of the item to expand the stack, and then use the same interactions to plant the item. If the last sense doesn't make sense â don't worry. Your Sim will always try and plant the highest quality produce/seedling from a stack. As you plant items, your Sim will gain gardening experience â but there's more to gardening than just planting crops! You must learn how to take care of them as well. At level zero, the only thing you can do is water them (which you have to do on a daily basis, pretty much) to ensure they do not wilt. This is particularly important with more rare crops, as they have increased chance of dying! Watering crops is simple: click the plant and choose "Water Plant" â your active Sim will walk over to it and water it. As your Sim advances, you will unlock more interactions, described in the next section. Once a plant dies, you can get rid of it to make way for new (and hopefully improved) plants through using the "Dispose All Dead Plants" interaction. Your Sim will take collect all of your dead plants, and move them to the trash can. Keep in mind that your Sim can only carry one plant at a time, so this process could take some time! ---------------------------- Interactions [S05.03] ---------------------------- In the previous section we were introduced to a few interactions which are available with your plant. There are far more interactions you can have with your plants, and here is a comprehensive list! Some of these interactions are not exclusive to the gardening trait, but they exist nevertheless. -- Dispose (Level 0): Throw a (living) plant in the bin, clearing a patch of dirt for some new plants. This can also be achieved through "Buy Mode", simply by selecting your plant and deleting it. I don't know why you would use this; presumably you have enough land to plant new crops anyway. -- Dispose All Dead Plants (Level 0): Remove all dead plants from your lot, clearing out space for new plants. This interaction is only available on plants which are either Barren or Dead. You can also remove these plants through "Buy Mode", by selecting your plant and deleting it. -- Harvest (Level 0): This will remove all fully grown produce from a plant, and place it in your inventory. Harvesting fruits can then be either sold, or replanted. Provided you cared for your garden adequately, harvested fruits will be much higher quality than the produce or seedlings originally planted. -- Talk to Plant (Level 0): A Sim who has a Green Thumb also has the ability to talk to plants, enabling them to increase their Social need without having their friends come over. This is a really useful interaction if you want to focus on gardening, as it means you do not have to spend time making friends! In order to use this interaction, your plant must be a Sprout (at least), and it cannot be dead. -- Tend Garden (Level 0): Perform a variety of maintenance tasks on every plant in your lot, including watering, weeding, and harvesting plants. Combined with sprinklers, this interaction allows you to manage your garden with fairly little effort; although, it must be noted that you still need to have unlocked each interaction (by meeting the minimum level requirement) before your Sim will perform the action as part of "tending" the garden. -- View (Level 0): This action can only be performed on plants which are in the Mature or Harvest growth state, and allows your Sim to stand in front of a plant for a few seconds admiring it. I'm not sure the purpose of this, as it does not seem to provide you with a boost in fun, social or any other of your needs. -- Water Plant (Level 0): This interaction allows you to provide your plants with much needed water, which your Sim can provide through the use of a watering can! There is, of course, a much more time-efficient way to water your plants: the sprinkler. This will be discussed in a later section. -- Weed Plant (Level 2): Remove those unsightly weeds from surrounding your plants. I don't really understand the point of this interaction, 'cause I do not know what weeds do. It seems that they inhibit the growth of your plants, so it's probably best you get rid of them! -- Fertilize with... (Level 3): While weeds inhibit growth, fertilizers enhance it â and this interaction allows you to use them! Different fertilizers work to different degrees, but I will explain this in more detail in a later section. -- Revive (Level 6): If you don't care for your plants, they will die.If you happen to have a Green Thumb, you can revive them! This interaction will bring plants back to life, but only if they die â not if they become barren. A few of these interactions apply to all plants on the lot â making the gardening process simpler. If you choose to perform the action, your Sim will automatically do so on all applicable plants (e.g. they will water any plant which needs to be watered, if you choose "Water Plant"). This applies to the "Water Plant", "Weed Plant", "Harvest" and "Dispose All Dead Plants" actions. ----------------------------- Plantables [S05.04] ----------------------------- In addition to the ten basic produce items, The Sims 3 includes nine other plantable items. Five of these items can be purchased quite easily â although they are special plants, and cannot be planted until you learn how. The other four can only be found as seedlings, on the ground. They can be found almost anywhere, and are almost too tiny to see without some assistance from the "Collection Helper" (a lifetime reward worth 40,000 points). Here's a full list of plantables: +---------------------+---------------+-----------+------------------+ | Tree or | Level | Buy | Sell Price | | Plant | (To Plant) | Price | (Pefect Quality) | +---------------------+---------------+-----------+------------------+ | Apple Tree | 0 | $ 6 | $ 17 | | Bell Pepper Plant | 7 | $18 | $ 52 | | Burger Patty Plant | 9* | $24 | $ 70 | | Cheese Plant | 8* | $ 8 | $ 22 | | Death Flower Bush | 7 | - | - | | Eggplant | 8* | $11 | $ 30 | | Flame Fruit Bush | 7 | - | $ 79 | | Garlic Plant | 7 | $23 | $ 66 | | Grapevine | 0 | $ 6 | $ 17 | | Lettuce Plant | 0 | $ 5 | $ 13 | | Life Plant | 7 | - | $110 | | Lime Tree | 5 | $14 | $ 39 | | Money Tree | 7 | - | - | | Omni Plant | 10 | - | - | | Onion Plant | 5 | $11 | $ 23 | | Potato Vine | 5 | $11 | $ 30 | | Steak Plant | 9* | $30 | $ 88 | | Tomato Plant | 0 | $ 5 | $ 13 | | Watermelon Vine | 5 | $14 | $ 39 | +---------------------+---------------+-----------+------------------+ * These plants require you to complete the "Uncommonly Good" (for eggs and cheese) or "Outstandingly Rate" (for steak and patties) before can plant them. Omni Seeds can be planted before completing "The Omnificent Plant", but someone in your household has to have completed this opportunity so that you may order the seeds (from your letterbox). While the produce gained from the majority of these plants is used exclusively for eating, selling or replanting, some has special properties which we cannot neglect to mention! Here we go: -- Death Flower: If your Sim faces death from an unnatural cause (e.g. from getting electrocuted, or getting caught in a fire), having one of these in your inventory will help! Instead of taking your Sims life, the Grim Reaper will accept your Death Flower, and will spare your Sim. Make sure you're more careful in the future. -- Flame Fruit: Flame fruit gives your Sim the "Cozy Fire" moodlet, as long as you are holding one in your inventory. This moodlet grants you +5 five mood, and (unfortunately) you cannot the effects do not stack (holding multiple flame fruit will not give you any better mood). Flame fruit has another interesting property in that they will glow if you leave them on the ground. Pretty. -- Life Fruit: Eating life fruit "lengthens" your Sim's lifespan. In actuality, it makes your Sim younger! Each fruit you eat will make you one day younger (independent of quality) â and, to my knowledge, there's no limit to how much of this fruit you can eat! I do not think that you can eat Life Fruit to reverse the aging process, however, so if your Sim is in the elderly phase of life, you're stuck there! -- Money Bags: Money trees produce money bags, which cannot be sold or replanted. The money bags can be exchanged for a variable amount of money, by interacting with them through your inventory. When a money tree dies, it drops a seed which you can plant to produce a new tree! Cool, but these things are hard to find, and slow to grow money. The official Prima Games strategy guide says that you also risk having them explode into bills if you don't take proper care of them! Great. -- Omni Plant: The Omni Plant is perhaps the most interesting plant in the game, as it does not produce any particular produce. You can feed it (for lack of a better word) a variety of items, and the Omni Plant will grow this item. I will dedicate a whole section to obtaining and planting Omni Seeds in a future revision of this guide. ----------------------------- Sprinklers [S05.05] ----------------------------- The process of manually watering your plants every morning is certainly a tedious one, which I definitely to not envy (particularly if your garden is rather large). If you are a serious gardener, I would recommend investing in at least a few sprinklers. These can be purchased in Buy Mode for $90: Sort by Room: Outdoors â Outdoor Actitivies â Schuper Schprinkler Sort by Function: Appliances â Miscellaneous â Schuper Schprinkler While sprinklers benefit you massively, they do waste a lot of water, and increase the cost of your bills as a consequence. If you want to reduce the cost of your bills, you have to upgrade your sprinklers to Auto Water. Requiring level four handiness, this upgrade will enable your sprinklers to be automatically activated sometime early in the morning â when watering is most effective. This will, of course, reduce your water consumption! When you place your sprinklers, it's important to note their coverage area. While they do have an annoying translucent semi-sphere covering them, this is not actually the area they cover! They will water anything in a five block area, theoretically enabling you to water one hundred and ninteen plants with a single sprinkler. In practice, this is not possible â your Sim must be able to physically access each plant in order to tend to it. I will add the most efficient sprinkler/plant placement in future revisions of this guide. /*===========================================================================*\ Advanced Topics in Gardening [S06.00] \*===========================================================================*/ I plan on adding more advanced information in this section â including information about fertilising your plants and using the omni plant to maximise its effect. Please check back in a couple of weeks for this information â I'm currently busy with exams, which I have to prioritise. /*===========================================================================*\ Contact [S07.00] \*===========================================================================*/ If you have a comment, query or suggestion, please feel free to contact me: jlambeth [plus] sims3guide [at] gmail [dot] com Make sure you replace the content contained in square brackets with their literal characters, and remove the spaces! Everyone should know how to do that â if you don't, I don't really know if I want you to contact me. I will try to read all emails sent to me, but please understand that this might take some time â I'm often busy with other things. If your email warrants a reply, I will endeavour to send you one as soon as possible. Finally, I ask that you respect the following rules: 1. No spam, please. That's about all. If you enter the email address correctly, there is no need to even worry about adding a relevant subject line â Gmail will automatically label your email! /*===========================================================================*\ Acknowledgements [S08.00] \*===========================================================================*/ At this point, I don't really have any specific individuals to thank - but of course, there are still certain acknowledgements! 1. Thanks to all of my good friends, for being my friends. None of you even play The Sims 3, but thanks anyway! 2. Thanks to Electronic Arts for making such a good game. 3. Thanks to everyone who has voted for me in "The Sims 3 Ultimate Fan Competition" - more information at the top of this document, for those who have not yet voted! 4. Thanks to everyone who is reading this part of my guide! /*===========================================================================*\ Acknowledgements [S09.00] \*===========================================================================*/ The contents of this guide, regardless of where posted, remain copyright to me (James Lambeth), and redistribution of this guide is limited to the following websites: http://www.gamefaqs.com/ (GameFAQs) http://faqs.ign.com/ (IGN Entertainment) If you see this guide on any other site, please contact me! I do not mind use of this guide on other websites, but I would like to know where it is being posted. If you are running a website, and want to put this guide on it, please contact me first! I'm a reasonable guy â promise. /*===========================================================================*\ Appendices [S10.00] \*===========================================================================*/ -------------------- My Experiment With Bookworms [S10.01] -------------------- I did not have any written source to verify my theory about bookworms, so I designed an experiment to see whether or not the benefit of being a Green Thumb stacked with the benefit of being a Bookworm. I've now done this experiment twice, and the result was quite interesting. I took four Sims and assigned them different trait configurations, representing each possible configuration which combined the Green Thumb and Bookworm traits. These are: 1. Neither of the trait 2. Bookworm trait 3. Green Thumb trait 4. Bookworm and Green Thumb trait Since a Sim has to have at least one trait, I assigned each of the four Sims the "Great Kisser" trait; which I have assumed to be neither positive nor negative for gardening. While I do not believe the lifetime wish has anything to do with the speed at which a Sim learns a skill, I also standardises this wish, nominating the "Heartbreaker" wish. After using cheats to change the Sim's needs to static, I paused the game and instructed each of the Sims read a copy of "Gardening Vol. 1: The Watercan Chronicles". The results of the experiment are as follows: +-------+---------+---------+---------+------------+ | Sim | Start | Finish | Time | Difference | +-------+---------+---------+---------+------------+ | 4 | 10:35 | 18:14 | 07:39 | +00:00 | | 2 | 10:35 | 19:20 | 08:45 | +01:06 | | 3 | 10:35 | 20:07 | 09:32 | +01:53 | | 1 | 10:35 | 21:32 | 10:57 | +03:18 | +-------+---------+---------+---------+------------+ To confirm that Sims read at the same rate in normal circumstances, I had all four Sims read "Handiness Vol. 1: Unplug It First!" Naturally, I expected the Sims with the Bookworm trait to finish first, and those without to finish later. These results were exactly as expected, with Sims 2 and 4 having identical times, and Sim 1 finishing 1 minute (game time) after Sim 3. This leaves me with the following conclusions relating to reading for skill development: 1. A Sim with the Bookworm trait as well as proficiency in a particular skill (through nominating an associated trait) gains the fastest experience. 2. A Sim with the Bookworm trait will learn a skill faster than a Sim with a proficiency in the same skill. 3. A Sim with proficiency in a skill will learn faster than a Sim with no proficiency in the same skill. Presumably these results can be applied to any skill which you can learn through reading, including: Logic, Cooking, Charisma, Handiness and Gardening.