A main difference between The Sims and The Sims 2 is that sims now grow up. This article reviews each age group and the features and limitations of them.
- Age: 3 Days
Babies are the first age group in The Sims 2. They are uncontrollable. They also lack the comfort and environment needs! They are not selectable either! You can only tell their mood by the colour on the background of the portrait. Babies don't have aspirations either so that can't collect points. Their needs can only be satisfied in specific ways.
- Hunger: Feeding a baby through a baby bottle from the fridge.
- Bladder: Can't be fulfilled. Babies always fail. This decreases hygiene. After the need has failed, you can change their diaper either on the baby or on the changing table.
- Energy: Fulfilled by placing baby in the crib.
- Fun: Fulfilled by playing with the baby.
- Social: Fulfilled by playing and talking with the baby.
- Hygiene: Fulfilled by changing the babies diaper or giving them a bath in the sink.
If hunger or social needs fail, then the social worker will take the baby away. They will sometimes spit on the adult while being played with, causing said adult's hygiene to fail.
After installing some exapansion packs, such as Apartment Life, your sims can study "parenting", which enables your sims to "check" on their baby. A thought bubble will appear over the baby's head, telling you what need they need filling.
- Age: 4 Days
Toddlers behave a bit like babies but are a bit more mature. They can now be selected and their personal information is now accessible. They move by crawling until they are taught to walk. They have the grow up aspiration as well. Their wants revolve around interacting with the family and getting trained. They can also satisfy needs in a few other ways.
- Bladder: Can be fulfilled with the potty.
- Hunger: Toddlers can be placed in the high chair and fed toddler mush. This is served with any other meal.
- Hygiene: Toddlers can be bathed by older sims.
Toddlers also have Ask For interactions that can be asked to older sims. They can also have books read to them. Toddlers can be taken by the social worker.
Toddlers have special skills they can learn. These are
- Learn To Walk: After that toddlers walk to places instead of crawling. They can't however climb stairs and must be carried up stories.
- Learn To Talk: After that toddlers can communicate effectively with other sims.
- Potty Training: After that toddlers no longer need to have diaper changes and will autonomously use the potty to fulfill the bladder need.
Toddlers also have special training objects that can help them build other skills. Skills they can build are Charisma, Creativity and Logic. Children can't build charisma without a career reward so building the skill is extremely beneficial.
- Age: 8 Days
Children are much more mature than their younger siblings. Children now go to school from Monday to Friday. They also have a comfort need. They still have the grow up aspiration. Their wants revolve around doing well in school, making friends and socializing. They also have special toys that they can play with. Some of them are restricted to their age group. Children can learn cooking by using the toy oven to make a muffin. They can also study at the bookshelf. Children can also bring other sims along with them from school and want to become friends with them. They can also have sleepovers. They can't have romantic relationships.
School is a major part of a child's life. It also affects part of their home life. They can take other children home with them. A major way they are affected is through homework. On the first day of school and the rest, they bring home homework. They will initially have wants to complete homework and learn to study. Any older sim can teach them to study. Learning to study helps them complete homework faster. Not completing homework will result in a decrease in their grades. If they get an F then they will be taken away from the social worker.
- Age: 15 Days
Teenagers are the first self-functional age in The Sims 2. They can fulfill needs just like adults and have access to all of their socials. They can only perform romantic socials with other teens, however. Teenagers still go to school but it lasts two hours shorter. They still have homework and can be taught how to study if it wasn't done during childhood. They have access to teen careers which help them during adulthood. They also have to choose an aspiration and Turn Ons/Offs if Nightlife is installed. If University is installed teenagers can earn scholarships for college. In that scenario teens have the option of going to college or going straight into adulthood. If they don't go to college then they have a 'never went to college' memory
Teenagers have special socials only available to them. They are mostly to do with getting their taste of romance and going out. Teens are the only age group that can Go Steady. This is the highest level of commitment for a teen. They can also experience their first kiss. Because this social is romantic, it can only be done between sims. Teens also like to have fun; they can ask an adult for permission to go out. If it is granted, they can call another sim for a night out on the town. During the night a car arrives at 8 pm, the teen gets in and returns 4 hours later with high fun and social and low hunger and energy. If permission is not granted, they have the option to sneak out. If they sneak out, the car arrives at 1 am and arrives home at 4 am. They can be caught by an adult on the way to the driveway or by a policeman when they're sneaking out. Both cause the same memories.
Finally, teens can runaway from home. If relationship is low with everyone in the household then the teen announces that he or she is running away. If the police are called within 24 hours then the teen is returned. If called after that deadline the chance is only 50 percent. If the teen isn't returned then he or she will come home a day before adulthood.
- Age: 29 days
Adults are the longest age in The Sims 2. They have access to most of the options in The Sims 2. They can get married, have children, advance in a career, etc. Their aspiration at the last day of adulthood can influence the age of an elder.
- Age: Random
Elders ages are completely random, however, they can be influenced by aspiration. An elders age is determined by these steps. Each value is added to each other except for the aspiration value. Only the score the adult is in at the time they grow up is added.
- Base Age: 10 Days
- Random Increase: 1-10 Days
- Low Red: -2 Days
- Top Red: 0 Days
- Green: 3 Days
- Gold: 7 Days
- Platinum: 10 Days
Elders behave just like adults, though their needs take longer to fulfill. They also have two unique things about them.
- Retiring: Elders can phone work and retire from it. After this they receive a pension equal to the amount of pay they received while working. After retiring they can reenter the workforce at the teenage careers.
- Anniversary: If two elders got married when they were adults, then they can hold an anniversary. This is just like a normal party except that all the guests arrive in their formalwear.
When elders die, the amount of inheritance, their survivors receive depends on relationship and aspiration score.