The Sims 2 Open For Business Review

The Sims 2 puts you in charge of just about every aspect of your sims’ lives, including such basic things as when to go to the bathroom. When it comes to their careers though, you can pick a career path for them but that’s about it. When it comes time for work a sim will disappear from the game for eight hours and then return with a paycheck. For all you know they could be spending the day at the track. The Sims 2: Open for Business changes all of this, not by allowing you to follow your sim to work but by letting you bring the work home. Open for Business is for sim entrepreneurs who want to set up their own shop, or work from home, and escape that mysterious sim rat race for good.

The entrepreneur at work.
Starting a new business is remarkably simple. All that it takes is an “open” sign, a cash register, and a phone, and your sim probably already has a phone. The interface for getting things going is a bit non-intuitive, but once you have things figured out you won’t have any issues with it. The sign is used to open your business to customers and bring any employees that you have to work. Flip the sign over to “closed” and you’ll send everyone home. The phone can be used to hire employees to give you a hand. The cash register is used to collect money on sales of items and is how you earn your pay. Actually the cash register is technically not required as you can build a business that charges customers simply for being there (think cover charge at a club, for example). Or if your sim is already loaded with simoleons, you can simply purchase an existing business by buying a commercial lot from one of the prior expansion games.

Open for business is very flexible when it comes to giving you the freedom to choose your entrepreneurial venture. You can build a gym, a beauty shop, or a bar, for example, or go into retail by buying objects at special wholesale prices and marking them up for sale to your friends and neighbors. You can even mix and match business related items to create a unique business, like a toy store with a bar to give the bored parents something to do. There are also items available for sale that you won’t find in the object list. If you want to sell these items you’ll need to make them yourself using one of the game’s workstation objects. The more time spent at the workstation, the better your sim will become with it, allowing him or her to build more and more expensive items for sale.

Opening a business is no guarantee that you’ll soon be rolling in simoleons. You will need to develop new work-related skills such as running the cash register, sales, and keeping the shelves stocked. You’ll need to hire enough employees to keep your business running, but not so many that their salaries will bleed you dry. You’ll also need to make sure that they are treating your customers right and that you didn’t hire any slackers, otherwise you’d better fire them quickly.