The Sims 2: UniversityEdit
Dormitory housing is one of the two types of housing available to all young adult Sims. Unlike renting a house on campus, there is no cost to move into a dormitory, so dorm housing is available to even the poorest students.
When in a college sub-neighborhood, the Specialty Lots section of the Lots and Houses Bin will contain pre-made dormitories of various sizes and designs. The pre-made dormitories in this section range in size from as few as 5 rooms to as many as 16. Also, each pre-made college has three or four dormitories of various sizes. Players should keep in mind that larger dorms with more residents will use more computer resources, and will be harder for the playable Sims to keep tidy.
Editing and building dormitoriesEdit
Dormitories can be edited, but some Buy and Build mode tools, and most Build mode categories, will be unavailable unless the cheat code
boolProp dormSpecificToolsDisabled is set to
false. In addition, Buy mode will be disabled unless the cheat code is used or the dorm is occupied. Even when using the cheat code, pre-placed doors and windows in premade dormitories may remain uneditable.
Players can also create dormitories. To make a dormitory, create a residential lot, then using the appropriate cheat code to zone it as a dormitory. This rezoning should be done before any Sims have moved into the lot.
Required and optional featuresEdit
When building or modifying a dormitory, each Myne Door must be placed so the picture area faces outward, and there should only be one door leading into a dorm room. This means that multiple-occupancy rooms are not possible, nor are "suites" in which two dorm rooms share a bathroom.
A dormitory must have a cafeteria with a ShinyTyme Cooktop, counter islands, and a sink or dishwasher. Since the cafeteria worker can burn food and will occasionally start a fire, there should be a Skimmer Securities Ceiling Sprinkler above the cooktop. The cafeterias in the pre-made dormitories all have refrigerators , but that is not required. If a refrigerator is present, the cafeteria worker will not use it when making food, but dorm residents will be able to take food from it.
Dormitories may also have mini-fridges and microwaves. Some premade dormitories have coffeemakers. Dormitories should also have bathrooms with showers. Many dorms use communal bathrooms with toilet stalls and several Strut Your Stuff communal showers, but some use ordinary bathrooms. Most dormitories will have at least one bookcase and computer, and some pre-made dorms have one or two rooms which have a computer. Most dormitories will also have have items for building creativity and logic, recreational items, and areas for lounging or doing class assignments.
All dorm rooms should have a bed. While the Dormies do not actually get into the beds in their rooms when they sleep, the quality of the bed in a Dormie's room determines how quickly he or she regains comfort and energy while sleeping. The premade dormitories will generally use the Craftmeister's Pine Bed or Caress of Teak Bed from the base game or the Flowin' Protozoan Single Bed from the University expansion pack.
While living in a dormitory, playable Sims live with young adult Townies, who are often referred to as "Dormies". However, if a dorm has 8 or fewer rooms, it is possible for all rooms to be occupied by playable Sims. Even though only playable Sims receive bills, it is assumed that all students in the dorm are billed the same, so the Dormies reduce the amount of the playable household's bills.[n 1][n 2] However, Dormies cannot be asked to join the household, and playable Sims moving out of the dorm cannot have Dormies move out with them. Individual Dormies living in a dorm will come and go at random; the player has no control over this. When playable Sims living in a dorm visit a campus community lot, Dormies living in the dorm may appear, even if they were in the dorm when the playable Sims left.
Dormitory rooms use the Myne Door. This door is able to be "claimed" by a single Sim, making a room his/hers and giving him/her the ability to restrict access to the room. After a Sim has claimed a room, his or her picture will appear on the door. This picture will not change if the Sim's appearance is changed, but the player can update the picture by having the Sim unclaim and reclaim the room. Dormies that move into the dorm also claim rooms; players are given a slight head-start (about an hour of game time) to claim the rooms they want the playable Sims to have. A Dormie's door will be locked if the Dormie is asleep or out of the dorm, but will be unlocked at other times. It the Dormie is in the room and the door is locked, the player may tell a playable Sim to knock on the door. If the Dormie's lifetime relationship with the knocking Sim is at least 20, the door will be unlocked, the contents of the room will become visible, and the player will be able to direct the Sim to enter the room. Playable Sims will not lock or unlock their doors unless directed to by the player. A playable Sim told to lock or unlock his or her door will stand in front of it and hang or remove a standard "no entry" sign. Dormies will not do this; the signs on their doors will simply appear or disappear depending on whether the door is locked or unlocked.
To maximize frame rate, rooms claimed by Dormies appear empty unless a playable Sim walks into them. This also creates a "What's going on in there!?" effect, which adds realism. However, it also means that Sims in a Dormie's room cannot be interacted with unless a playable Sim enters the room. A playable Sim can enter a Dormie's unlocked room, but cannot use "Call Over" to ask the Dormie to come out of it. The contents of these rooms, and any Sims that are in them, become visible if the player enters Buy mode.
Since Dormies' rooms appear empty, Sims in them are not animated unless a playable Sim is in the room. When a non-controllable Sim enters a Dormie's room, he or she will fade out and become invisible. Entering Buy mode will show that they are simply standing where they were when they became invisible, even if the door is locked and the room's thought bubble indicates that the occupant is sleeping. Sometimes, a Dormie will not fade all the way in when leaving his or her room, and will appear translucent. This is simply a graphical glitch, and does not affect gameplay; affected Dormies will appear normal after they shower or after they leave the lot and return to it.
If playable Sims are merged into a dorm household, an equivalent number of Dormies will move out. The player has no control over which ones move out.
Once a Dormie claims a room in a dorm, it appears that he or she becomes associated with that dorm, and will not move into another. If there are more unclaimed rooms than there are "unassociated" Dormies to claim them, the game will generate new Dormies to claim those rooms.
If a Dormie is moved into a playable household, either on or off campus, his or her room will become unclaimed, and the game will generate a new Dormie to take his or her place. However, the former Dormie may still remain in the dorm for a while, unless a playable Sim says goodbye to him/her.
Advantages of dorm lifeEdit
There are two main advantages to dorm life. One is that it's cheap. There is no cost to move into a dorm, and bills are generally low once the objects in the dorm have had time to depreciate. While the cafeteria has a limited selection, the food is free, plentiful, and available at almost all hours. Of course, Sims can still cook their own food in the kitchen whenever they wish, as long as there is a refrigerator.
The other is social. The Dormies are a ready-made pool of Sims for the playable Sims in the dorm to interact with and make friends with. Of course, the player has no control over which Dormies will be in the dorm at any given time, but there will always be some. It's also likely that some of the Dormies will be members of the secret society.
Plumbing, appliances, and electronics never break on dormitory lots, even if heavily used. Also, even shy Sims do not object to doing their private activities in front of others, even if they would be unhappy to use a public toilet on other lots.
Disadvantages of dorm lifeEdit
Dorm life does have its disadvantages, which mostly center around the Dormies.
Dormies will do assignments very often, and frequently leave unfinished assignments on desks and cafeteria tables. They may come back to finish them, but have been known to start new ones even if they have unfinished ones lying around[n 3] (Unfinished assignments can be moved or deleted in Buy mode). They may have a tendency to do research, and do not always put the books away. If a bookcase is near a television set, chess table, computer, etc., seats in front of those items may be monopolized by Dormies doing research. Dormies will not always shower when they need to, and will rarely, if ever, clean a toilet stall, shower, or bathroom sink without being influenced to clean, regardless of how high their Neatness score is. If a dorm household has some spare cash, hiring a maid may be worth their while.
Another disadvantage is that when a Sim throws a party or invites other Sims over, the guests often disappear into Dormies' rooms for hours at a time, even if they have no relationships with the Dormies. Guests cannot be interacted with while in Dormies' rooms, nor can they be stopped from going there (as soon as they start walking toward a dorm room, there are no options to interact with them). This can make it difficult to throw a successful party at a dorm. It may also make joining a Greek house while on a dorm lot a challenge, since the members of the Greek house who arrive to "check out" the prospective member need to be socialized with, but often make themselves totally unavailable.
Another issue is that the Dormies consider items such as desks, computers, etc. in a playable Sim's room to be publicly available, unless the door is locked.
Also, tables in dorms with high traffic may occasionally get "stuck", so that they're considered to be in use even though they're not being used, which can be annoying if a Sim is very hungry.[n 4]
- ↑ Each dorm resident's share of the bills is determined by dividing the dorm's total bills by the number of Myne Doors. If a custom dorm does not have any Myne Doors, the game will generate a divide-by-zero error. The DormBillFix mod from MATY fixes this.
- ↑ Delivery of bills to dorms has been observed to be haphazard. For any given dorm, they may arrive normally, or stop arriving after having come for a while, or resume after having stopped for a while, or never start arriving at all. The mail carrier has also been seen to arrive, look at the mailbox, then leave without putting anything into, or taking anything out of, the mailbox.
- ↑ The DormieAssignmentFix mod at MATY fixes this.
- ↑ This can be fixed by pressing
Ctrl+Shift+C, typing in
boolProp testingCheatsEnabled true, Shift+Clicking the stuck tables, Force Error, and then Reset.
The Sims 3: University LifeEdit
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Unlike the dorms in The Sims 2: University, dorms in The Sims 3: University Life are fully customizable when using Build/Buy mode. Also, Sims will no longer claim doors, but it is possible to click on a bed and reserve it for a specific Sim. To give Sims privacy in their own room, it is possible to lock the door, as doors in the base world are now lockable. There is also an option to select which Sims can and cannot use a door.
Unlike The Sims 2: University, there is no cafeteria or cafeteria worker to prepare food. Sims living in the household are responsible for making their own food, though household Sims may autonomously serve a meal. As in The Sims 2, however, Sims in the household are responsible for the upkeep of breakable objects and the cleanliness of the dormitory. If there is a washer on site, they are also responsible for taking care of dirty laundry.
NPC roommates in the dormitories may serve meals. They are usually not very proficient in the Cooking skill, and occasionally start fires on the lot. When building a custom dormitory, it would be wise to place a fire alarm in the kitchen area. Dormitories cannot be robbed by a burglar, so there is no need for a burglar alarm.
Mail service is available to Sims through a mailbox that is also part of a community job board. This object gives the option to look for one-time jobs to make Simoleons. The jobs break down into three categories: Social Group Jobs, Day Jobs, and Dares.
Pre-made dorms are set up to house 8 Sims, including the playable household. A custom-built dorm will also be expected to house 8 Sims, no matter how many beds are placed on the lot. If a roommate is found to be annoying to the playable household, the player click on that Sim, then dismiss them in the "Roommates" social tab.