Another Challenge you say? Why yes! Yes, I do! Wait, don’t leave just yet. This isn’t the month-after-month, perhaps years challenge that you’re used to hearing about. This is a shorter, although more intense (in my opinion) challenge that pushes the limits for one single Sim for his or her childhood. What I’m talking about is the Wonder Child Challenge created by none other than Pinstar and Imagining Mystic. This creative couple has put their heads together yet again to give us all another way to play in ways we may not usually play on a regular basis.
In a nutshell, the goal of the challenge is for the first born child of an Adult couple – yes that’s Adult, not Young Adult – to accomplish as much as possible in a normal life span without any cheats. Doesn’t sound all that hard, does it? Think again. There’s a points system involved if you really want to get into it and there’s a score sheet that I made that you can download to help you out if you want!
Here I’ll give you a few tips on how to maximize your points, and hopefully the fun factor, during the Wonder Child Challenge.
First things first, you need to make or download from the Gallery the lucky couple who will be responsible for creating and raising the Wonder Child. They must start out as roommates so there is no advantage given from the start. I recommend playing with their genetics in Create-A-Sim to see how their children will turn out because you’ll be spending a lot of time with that kid. I also like to give them fun, nerdy names like Sheldon or Bernadette, or in this case Faraday, but that’s totally up to you. Pay special attention to their traits and aspirations, keeping in mind what jobs they may take. For example, you don’t want to give a stay-at-home writer dad the ambitious trait because he’ll never get a promotion which makes for very unhappy Sims, and nobody likes that. Well, maybe some do, but that’s a whole other story.
Next, your Sims need a roof over their heads. They only have the standard starting funds, so choose wisely! A mid-range med, a decent cook top, a bathroom and the pertinent skill-building items are enough to begin with. The first several days should be focused on three things: 1) building the relationship between your two chosen Sims, 2) getting as many promotions as possible to bring in a decent income and 3) completing as many aspiration milestones and whims as possible.
One of the key things about this challenge is knowing when to change their Aspirations to earn the most Reward Points as possible. Selecting different aspirations based on the game play is your friend! If you’re sending them on a date, change BOTH of their aspirations to Soulmate or Serial Romantic.
If they are reading a book, change it to Nerd Brain. Get those points where you can! The more reward points you can earn between these two Sims, the better. But don’t spend them all right away – save them because after that baby becomes a child, the future Wonder Child is going to be drinking a lot, and I mean A LOT of Sleep Replacement Potions.
If you’re anything like me, money becomes tight pretty quick when there’s no cheating allowed. This is why I almost always have one of the parents be a painter. The money is good and it doesn’t take all that long to paint something. Granted, it is a one time payment unlike the Writer, but it is a bit more instant gratification as far as Simoleans go. Keep in mind that the parent’s skills don’t count towards any points. They are there to bring in money to be able to get the Wonder Child the things he/she needs to learn and accomplish as much as possible!
Fast forward about a Sim-week or so. Your two Sims have gotten a promotion or two under their belt. Perhaps they have gone on a date and are actually starting to have some romantic feelings towards one another. It’s several days into their already truncated lifespan since they started as Adults. It’s time to get busy and make that Wonder Child a reality. I feel like now is the time to point out that they are not required to get married. It is up to you. If they do get married, I recommend forgoing the wedding since it costs 1000 Simoleans to throw one. Eloping gets the job done without all the fuss.
Don’t wait too long to have children or they will die when the Wonder Child is still a child. Having the child too early isn’t good either because the parents won’t have enough Reward Points of Simoleans to help out too much and the child will take up too much of their time. So timing is pretty crucial here. I tend to go for getting pregnant around day 7. Thanks to the miracle of instant pregnancy tests, you can determine if your Sim is pregnant and prepare for the bundle of joy. Once he/she is born, you can go ahead and age the Wonder Child up to, well, a child. I like to think of the infant to child transformation like the sublimation of dry ice – it completely bypasses the toddler phase and goes straight from infant to child. It’s a scientific wonder!
Now it’s time to start visiting your local Wholesale Warehouse and purchase Sleep Replacements Potions in bulk. Ideally you’ll be able to get enough between Mom and Dad that it would be worthless to buy the kid a bed. Wonder Child will stay up all night and day learning everything possible. Again, you’ll need to get in and stay in the habit of bouncing from aspiration to aspiration depending on the activity the Wonder Child is doing. The goal is to max all childhood skills and complete all childhood aspirations. It can be done! The more traits the Wonder Child has, the more points to be gained.
This brings me to another point. Do not – DO NOT – use the Wonder Child’s reward points to buy Sleep Replacement potions or any other consumable Reward Potion. Those points should be used to buy traits only! I made this mistake my first go around and missed out on buying traits. Each trait earns the Wonder Child 10 points! They’re all worth the same amount of points no matter how many Reward Points you spent on them so don’t look over the cheaper ones. There are no bad reward traits. I also highly recommend investing in both the Morning Sim and Night Owl reward traits so skills increase faster in the morning and evening.
Kids, don’t forget to do your homework! The number of days remaining after earning an ‘A’ in school before the Wonder Child ages to the next life stage gives you that number of points. After earning that A, they pretty much just coast on through so you can focus on building skills and completing aspirations. Every skill COMPLETED earns you 13 points, and every skill level earns one point. Once the Wonder Child becomes a teenager, the skill building becomes crucial. Focusing and maxing a few skills will earn more points in the long run than getting one or two levels into all of them since you get an extra 3 points for maxing a skill. Also, don’t be afraid to use vacation days after earning that ‘A’ in school to give you more time to build skills.
Speaking of vacation days, travelling to Granite Falls as a family also allows for additional skill-building and aspiration completing time because the clock essentially stops while on vacation. It would be a great time to work on fishing, herbalism, fitness, charisma, pretty much anything you can.
But most of all, have fun with it! Sure, it’s a challenge, but it’s also pretty incredible seeing how many aspirations can be completed and skills maxed out by one Sim in such a short period of time! Make the challenge your own. You can make it as easy or as hard as you want. So go out there, toss two Sims in a house, and see how YOUR Wonder Child does!