Singles: Flirt Up Your Life

19_1Singles: Flirt Up Your Life is yet another of the many clones of The Sims that appeared like mushrooms after a heavy summer rainfall. Oh wait, there haven’t been any Sims clones, aside from The Partners. Even so, it’s definitely not in the interest of this game to focus on the least interesting element of The Sims – developing interpersonal relationships. Friends were really a means to an end; you met more people in order to get a better job so you could make more money in order to buy more stuff. It was always about buying stuff.

The Singles is about sex. The primary objective in the game is to bang your roommate, but this proves to be less entertaining that it should be. You move from flirting and teasing to more serious pursuits. The numbers of interactions are limited, which is bizarre when you consider it’s the focus of the entire game, and there are limited responses for each character.

Also limited are the number of characters. There are a small number of fixed Caucasian characters to choose from, all with the exact same body type. The characters are of certain types: geeks, intellectuals, hipsters, art damaged types, but the choices are all ultimately irrelevant because you can eventually hook up with whomever you want to.

13_1There’s a strange mixture of the chaste and slutty as you move from simple pecks on the cheek, to French kissing, and to full-frontal nudity. Getting from point A to B isn’t particularly interesting as it’s all about managing the usual Sims needs (food, cleanliness, etc.). Your apartment is a very static place, with no visitors and no leaving except to go to work. (These are some seriously boring singles.) It’s easy to “win†the game, but the payoff is hardly worth it. And god help us all if people try to use this as some sort of guide to how to score.

Singles is mostly noteworthy for being rated AO, for “Adults Only,†as if seeing naked people is of greater concern to the ESRB than the snuff murders of Manhunt. Though it delivers the goods nudity-wise, there’s little else to Singles.

System Requirements: Pentium III 700 MHz, 128 MB RAM, 1.2 GB HDD, Win98

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