Worldbuilding: The Wrightian Faith, Part 1

Ever try to write a story in which religion plays a huge, big important part of it, and come to realize that, while you’ve got a good idea of the general system, you’re really, really short on specifics?

If you have been, please tell me, because that’s kinda where I am right now and it’d be nice to know that I’m not the only one! 😉

Anyway, this is where I try to get my little duckies all in a row and figure out what the heck is going on with this whole “religion” thing, before I get myself into big trouble in the story. I can’t hope to answer EVERY question about religion in this post, especially since the Checkylist asks so many questions about religion, but what I hope to do is paint the religion in broad strokes and fill in the details in the Checkylist and story posts.

And an all-purpose disclaimer: I’m stealing creatively reappropriating materials from many religions (Roman Catholicism is the big one) in my conception of the Wrightian faith. I’m not trying to offend anyone here. Think of it as a compliment — your religion is so cool, I nicked borrowed some stuff from it! And while yes, there will probably be some snarky comments, I’ll try to tone it down for the sake of any religious folks who might be reading this.

But that’s enough of that. On with the fun stuff — the heaven/hell hierarchy, and the founding of the Wrightian faith.

The Basics: Who the Wrightians Believe In

The Wrightian faith is centered around the worship of the Lord Wright, Creator of the Sims Universe and the Sims themselves. It’s a strictly monotheistic system (like Islam and Judaism, and not at all like the trinitarian system of most branches of Christianity). The Lord Wright is it, the Lord and Creator of the universe, the final court of appeal, the Alpha and Omega, etc., etc.

However, just because the Lord Wright is THE supreme being does not mean that he’s the only supernatural creature out there. (And I’m not talking about the fae and the vampires and the zombies here.) The Lord Wright has three orders of angels underneath him to do his bidding, you know — make the coffee and order the pizza and basically make sure that Heaven’s running smoothly so the Lord Wright can concentrate on the rest of the universe. The lowest order of angels are the souls of departed Sims who died in the Lord Wright’s good graces. Their job is to return to their descendants and spook them if they’re doing things deemed to be upsetting to the Lord Wright, and they look much like the deceased did in life. Only, you know, transparent and floaty.

The next-highest are the Maxoids. They helped the Lord Wright with the creation of the Universe, and created patches miracles and such after the initial creation period was over. In Wrightian iconography, they’re depicted as traditional angels: long hair, very pretty, wings, the whole nine yards. Think of a Christmas tree-topper and you’ve got the idea.

The last and highest order of angels are the Most Holy Llamas. These are the Lord Wright’s closest companions, his confidantes, his best buds. Their role is so specialized and ineffable that even the most sophisticated theologians aren’t sure what they do. No one knows what the Most Holy Llamas look like, but in artwork they are often depicted as four-legged, shaggy-furred mammals. This is to represent their holiness and ineffableness, and also that the Lord Wright works in mysterious ways.

But things aren’t all fun and games in the supernatural world; there’s an opposite side to every coin, after all. If there’s a Heaven for the Lord Wright and his angels, there’s a Hell for … well, actually, there’s some debate over who’s in charge down there. Most of the lewd and uneducated folk of Albion and beyond believe that Hell is run by the Grim Reaper and his hula zombies. However, the visions of many a well-regarded mystic has thrown this once universal truism into doubt. The Grim Reaper and the hula zombies generally only show up to guide a Sim who has lived an excellent life to the afterlife — could this mean that the Lord Wright is sending these Sims to Hell? Or is the Lord Wright humiliating the Grim Reaper and the hula zombies by forcing them to act as ferrymen (and women) for the most favored Sims — forcing them to view Heaven over and over, but never to be allowed to enjoy it? While the leading theologians of the Church try to argue this out, they leave the regular teaching — i.e. that the Grim Reaper is in charge of Hell, and the hula zombies are his minions — intact, rather than subject the normal folk of the Church to complex theological puzzles that would probably fry their puny brains.

However, luckily the Church agrees that there are other denizens of hell: the souls of Sims who died out of favor with Wright, and the demons. There are many, many types of demons (so many that more cynical Wrightians suspect the Church higher-ups of making up a new one whenever they need to denigrate someone or something). However, theologians insist that the multiplicity of the demons establishes an important doctrinal point. The Lord Wright stands for order, unity and hierarchy: hence, there are only three orders of angels, all of them are well-defined and have clearly defined (with the exception of the Most Holy Llamas) duties. In Hell, however, there is confusion, disorder, and chaos.

Out of all the possible demons, one is held up as the worst: the cow demon. Why, exactly, cow demons are so bad is a mystery to much of the populace — but since most of the theologians who make these sorts of distinctions are college-educated … well, I’m sure you guys get why the cow demons are so hated.

The Book of Wright and St. Robert the Crumpled-Bottom

The Book of Wright is the main holy book of the Wrightian faith — there are other influential works by saints and sages, but this is the MAJOR book that nearly every Wrightian has some familiarity with. Most of them don’t own the book, of course, but they’ve heard the stories described therein. The Book of Wright details the tale of the creation of the universe and lays out the hierarchy of heaven. It also tells the story of the early days of the Wrightian faith. Most of it was penned by the most holy prophet, St. Robert the Crumpled-Bottom, though some sections, detailing St. Robert’s death and the founding of the Wrightian church in its founder’s absence, were written after his death. Where St. Robert’s authorship leaves off and his followers’ begins is a matter of some debate.

Some one thousand years before the founding of Albion, St. Robert the Crumpled-Bottom was born in the Dousa Desert, in the far reaches of the Reman Empire. Little is known of his early life, though the Book of Wright records the visions of llamas his mother, St. Brandi the Broke, had shortly after his conception and before his birth. It is also mentioned in the Book of the Wright that he was born some time after his father died in a drowning described as “suspicious” at the oasis where the tribe was staying at the time. Because of this, some more daring theologians theorize that “Crumpled-Bottom” is a Dousa euphemism for bastardy, though all agree St. Robert was actually legitimate, and that any imputations of bastardy were the result of gossiping neighbors and Reman smear campaigns.

He lived rather inoffensively — and quite lucratively — as a dowser for most of his early adulthood, until approximately the age of thirty. Then, he too had visions of llamas and a direct line of communication to the Lord Wright (or so he claimed). He began to move about the Dousa Desert, preaching the good news of peace, salvation and permanently platinum aspirations for all. He brought with him his wife, St. Agnes, and a train of followers that grew by the minimum.

When he arrived at Downtownium, the Reman metropolis on the edge of the Dousa Desert, things started to get ugly. His fame had preceded him, and though he was welcomed into the city with great ceremonies, the Reman officials were rather alarmed. In their minds, such large groups of subjugated people could only mean one thing: potential rebellion. Within a week, they had St. Robert arrested and put to death by crucifixion.

It didn’t stick.

Less than forty-eight hours after his demise, St. Robert was spotted walking about the Forum of Downtownium. Specifically, he walked up to the Governor’s house, knocked on the door, and made moose ears when the shocked Governor, summoned by his slaves, came to the door. St. Robert informed the Governor that the Lord Wright had allowed him to die simply in order to resurrect him and thus prove that his might was supreme. The Governor didn’t give a damn and swiftly re-arrested St. Robert, but was stymied when the courts ruled that, since he had already been put to death for treason, rebellion and all the rest of it, the government could not re-prosecute him. The fact that St. Robert informed them that they could kill him as many times as they liked, and the Lord Wright would keep bringing him back, probably helped them in coming to that decision. While still imprisoned, St. Robert struck a deal with the Governor, allowing he and all his followers to be transported by boat to Glasonland, where they would try to make converts in a new land. Glad to have this particular band of potential rebels out of his hair, the Governor agreed. As soon as they were gone, he went about mercilessly executing the many, many converts St. Robert had made in Downtownium who did not wish to remove to Glasonland. Of course, some slipped through the cracks and went about spreading the Word of Wright in Reme.

Note: Some years after his death, the Mashuga Heresy claimed that the Lord Wright did not, in fact, resurrect St. Robert, but that instead he had discovered a mystical object, called the Resurrect-o-Nomitron or “bone phone” some years before his preaching began. This object allowed the user to open up a direct line of communication with the Grim Reaper. Sylvia Marie the Mashuga, the originator of this heresy, claimed not only that a wealthy backer of St. Robert, having been given this object shortly before St. Robert’s execution, used it to bring St. Robert back, but also that she herself was in possession of this mysterious “bone phone.” Sylvia Marie the Mashuga was sentenced to death by secular leaders, but somehow escaped prison before the sentence could be carried out. The “bone phone,” if she ever had it — if it ever existed — has not since been found. Interestingly enough, though, this whole debacle went down in the area that today is known as Albion …

While on ship, St. Robert dropped two bombshells. The first was that his death had effectively dissolved his marriage to St. Agnes — after all, vows only last “until death do us part.” This wouldn’t have been much of a problem, since another bought of wedding vows would have re-tied the knot. Then came the second bombshell. In his many conversations with the Lord Wright in the afterlife (conversations that he would refer to, sporadically, throughout his life, often when the fledgling Church was divided or facing challenges), the Lord Wright had indicated that, while normal married life was expected and encouraged for normal Sims, those whom the Lord Wright called to special service were to be celibate. Thus, the vows between he and St. Agnes would not be renewed. St. Agnes shocked the whole ship by taking this news with relatively good grace. St. Robert thus formed the first order of monks of all the men on board ship who were willing to become celibate (or who were forced into it when their wives opted to become nuns), while St. Agnes formed the first order of nuns from the women who wished to become celibate (or who were forced into it when their husbands opted to become monks).

Their ships were sighted some time before they landed and were met by a delegation from the King of Glasonland, Brutus I. The delegation, upon hearing the pilgrims’ story, instantly conveyed them to the King, where St. Robert, according to the Book of Wright, was inspired by the Lord Wright to speak in such an eloquent manner that he converted the King and all his court that very day. (Secular histories, most of which have been suppressed by this time in Albion’s history, claim that Brutus was a staunch follower of the proverb “the enemy of my enemy is my friend” — thus, anyone who pissed off Reme as much as St. Robert did was well worth cultivating as an ally — and moreover wasn’t that attached to his religion anyway.) In any case, the land that would eventually become Camford University was ceded to St. Robert and his followers, and they were licenced to preach and convert throughout the country. Thus the slow work of converting the country folk of Glasonland, many of whom were unreasonably tenacious in their former, erroneous beliefs, began. Some of the Church’s first martyrs came about as a result of violence from the country folk, or at least the first martyrs the main body of the Church knew about — Wrightians were still being slaughtered in droves back in Reme, but owing to slow communication speeds, it was a while before the Glasonland branch of the Church got to hear about it.

While in Camford, St. Robert and St. Agnes founded the original chapter houses of their respective monastery and nunnery, naming them oh-so-creatively “The Monastery” and “The Nunnery.” After their deaths, they became known as the Order of St. Robert and the Order of St. Agnes, respectively. As the original chapter houses, these two houses are theoretically the mother houses of all orders of monks and nuns in Wrightendom — theoretically.

St. Robert lived to an astonishingly old age: eighty-five. Up until his last years, he continued to travel about the countryside to preach and convert, as well as send relief and comfort to the struggling Reman church. Before he died for the second time, he informed his followers that since his time of life had run out, the Lord Wright would not be resurrecting him again. Apocryphal accounts of his death date it as one of the first sightings of not only the Grim Reaper, but the hula zombies — and certainly the first time the Grim Reaper had given a Sim a nice little umbrella drink to sip along the way to the afterlife.

St. Agnes disappeared from her nunnery shortly after St. Robert’s death. Her fate is still a matter of much debate: was she instantly translated into Heaven by Lord Wright? Did she move into the hinterlands between Reme and Glasonland (i.e. Albion) to preach and convert there, and die peacefully eventually? Did the senility that was gradually overtaking her lead her to wander outside at night and fall down a well? No one knows. There is a fourth theory, that St. Robert, realizing that St. Agnes would be sure to go to Heaven after her death, petitioned the Lord Wright to never let her die, but this is held to be borderline heresy. However, there is a strange old woman in a nun’s habit who haunts the northern coastline of Albion, whacking with her purse couples who are engaging in public displays of affection … and St. Agnes was always a foe of sexual impropriety, particularly after she became a nun …

In any case, the Wrightian religion survived and even thrived following the deaths of its founders, growing to the point where even the Reman Empire realized the religion would be much better co-opted than persecuted (approximately five hundred years before the founding of Albion). The Church today is a powerhouse, with a finger in virtually every pie, and continues to do the work of preaching, teaching and shepherding Sims along the path of life.


29 thoughts on “Worldbuilding: The Wrightian Faith, Part 1

  1. Lol! I like! Your religion is very creative and you tell it so funny. I can, however, see just a bit of your own religious cynicism peeking through.

    Especially the part about Brutus and why he converted.

    I also like how monks and nuns came about and the fact that the governor couldn’t kill Robert again because they’d already put him to death once before.

    I always love how you integrate the Maxis sims in for your religious people. It’s really cute.

  2. Ever try to write a story in which religion plays a huge, big important part of it, and come to realize that, while you’ve got a good idea of the general system, you’re really, really short on specifics?

    If you have been, please tell me, because that’s kinda where I am right now and it’d be nice to know that I’m not the only one!

    *raises hand* In the beginning, the Lady created the first world. She shortly grew dissatisfied with it, destroyed it, and created another. This pattern repeated until she created a world, realized she had made a mistake that would cause this newly-created world to explode in a big fiery ball visible from space, destroyed it, and uttered the most holy words, “That’s it! Until I know what I’m doing and have everything I need, I’m making a testerhood!” There are some who say that strange world still persists to this day.

    So, basically, I’m the Lady, right? The one who inspires great deeds and punishes the wicked and provides miracles. Not every culture believes in the Lady, but in every single genesis story, the figure who created the world is a woman.

    The Church that actually calls itself a Church follows the teachings of the Lady, which basically boil down to ‘be excellent to each other.’ There are plenty of saints involved in this church, however, who did something so excellent that they help inspire excellence in others. (The Lady looooooves statues, so there are no prohibitions against graven idols.) Most people pray to a patron saint they identify with or a patron saint who is said to aid with their particular problem rather than directly to the Lady.

    The Lady totally doesn’t mind this. She also totally doesn’t mind that the Twikkii pray to the Fire God and the Earth God and the Sun God and the Sea God, and probably some other gods and spirits and old dead chiefs and headmans and shamans besides, or that the cold Northern folk have their own set of Gods and Goddesses, or whatever it is the Eastern folk do when they meditate (which means, I have no idea how to set up an Eastern-seeming yet non-real-world faith), or even what happens in the Overforest. Because all gods are one god and all goddesses are one goddess and all of them are the Lady.

    Granted, sometimes the Lady herself is torn between ‘Human sacrifice is very, very bad, you shouldn’t do it’ and ‘If I could only find the custom content for it…’

    The various orders of shaven-headed men and women who dedicate themselves to the Lady usually do so by dedicating themselves to a particular saint. Saints include Bestina the Gray (The Gray Woman of Sim City statue), a patron of children’s safety, and Saint Aquilegia (who gave me kid ninjas and a really awesome re-meshed BV shrine), who is probably going to be a patron of writers (cos she asked) and education (my monks wear the ninja costumes because trousers are practical; Aquilegia made it so kids could be fully raised inside the Orders (no, babies and toddler don’t count– too many nappies)).

    And that is… um, pretty much all I have. I have a whole MESS of statues, many of which are likely to grace my University (which hasn’t decided if it wants to be French or Greek), a few statues with huge versions and tabletop versions (which are awesome; I can have the Church run a charity shop and sell tiny home versions of your patron saint to take home and inspire you to good works and remembering to put your frickin’ books away!), and some vague ideas of the personalities of the Twikkii gods. Who are generally pretty easygoing; the Fire God might blow his top now and then and set off the volcano, but he gave the Twikkii a hot spring to make up for it.

    (Also, writing this much has given me the idea of having the Church consider the testerhood to be a sort of limbo. If you haven’t been so good or so bad in your life, you must be tested after death in a world where the laws of the universe randomly change (due to hacks) and the fae and the dryads breed like crazy… but nobody’s ever short of cash and you’re never really hungry or tired or uncomfortable…)

  3. The Lady sounds like a very sensible deity. 🙂 Why can’t all deities be like that?

    I haven’t even begun to think about religion in Smina (Takemizu Village) or Twikkii or the remote hinterlands of Reme (i.e., Three Lakes). Though I do have this idea to make the Reman hinterlanders the only ones who know what’s going on with the actual gods and goddesses … or, er, one demi-goddess. “Oh, aye, m’lord, the Lord Wright created the universe, everyone knows that. But ‘e left the buildin’ a long time ago, so ter speak. ‘Tis the demigoddess Morgaine what’s in charge now … what do ye mean, ye ain’t never heard of the demigoddess Morgaine?”

    The demigoddess Morgaine would find this all to be very amusing. 😉

    I’m going to be including a ton of saints too, mostly named after Maxis Sims and other Sim creators/storytellers. Maybe not all with their own statues, because I’ve personally never seen one of Agnes Crumplebottom or Will Wright or the Curious brothers. 😉 Never mind statues of individual Sim creators/storytellers — most of us aren’t that egotistical, I would hope!

    Lol @ the human sacrifice bit. You know, there’s a rack table over at MTS … with some OSMPs and a posebox or two, plus some creative picture-taking …

    Though human sacrifice does sort of fly in the face of the whole “be excellent to each other” bit, alas. 😉

    I really like the testerhood/limbo idea! If you wanted to you could do some very funny stories with that. Like one of your Sims gets put into a coma and wanders around the Testerhood for a while, the comes back swearing to be a better person. 😉

  4. The Lady knows her creations are idiots, that’s why she’s so reasonable. To them the height of independent evil seems to be theft. Or unauthorized use of telescopes.

    I can see that. *nods* “Lord Wright gave us all live and the divine spark of Free Will, that’s true, but he’s a creator, traveler– he can’t be expected to sit and watch all his creations when he could be off making new. It’s the Demigoddess who minds our small affairs, now.”

    See, that’s why I’ve been trying to think backwards. Find statue I like, nab (especially if there is a wee tabletop version, too), set aside for potential saint. (FantasyRogue’s getting a haberdashery named after her, however. Delicious hennins and crispinettes!)

    The trouble with human (well, Sim) sacrifice is that it is not excellent but it is kind of a little bit awesome. It’s possible to get things confused as time goes by, after all, and it would give the missionaries (tourists!) more of a leg to stand on, don’t you think? (I have the babbyroaster. It doesn’t work on adults, though. I long for a way to push Sims into a volcano. So much for being a reasonable deity.)

    I spend so damn much time in my testerhood already, it’s almost a ‘well, why not?’ sort of thing. The Testing Lands. Where you go if you’re not quite bad enough for hell but nobody’s sure if you’re good enough for heaven.

  5. Don’t forget adultery. 😉 Nothing will get you a knocked-over trashcan and a lot full of roaches faster than getting caught!

    Lol, statues first, then saints — that makes sense! And I like the haberdashery idea!

    You know what might be funny — stick a Human Statue or two in the church(es), call it the Statue of St. … Somebody-or-other, and have a storyline about the miracle of the statue’s movement!

    Stopping human sacrifice around the world does seem like an excellent reason to go on a vacation — er, mission trip. Though I thought the babbyroaster didn’t actually roast babbies? Maybe I misread that.

    As for volcano-pushing … hmm. Maybe if you created a volcano lot, with a really big mountain an a hole in the middle … some terrain paint to make the hole look like it’s full of lava … and maybe invisible recolors of those flame-jet things. Again, OMSPs, poseboxes (like one maybe that will give you some of the poses/animations from alien abuduction for the fallling in?) and creative picture taking … it could be done …

    It would probably be a headache, though. 😉

    The Testing Lands. I like it. 😀

  6. Ohhh yes indeed adultery, but adultery has requirements that “Oh look! An unguarded gnome!” does not.

    Well, she fixed one hat mesh and is providing another, so to me it makes sense? (Also The Rogue’s Fantasy just sounds like a silly fluffy sort of ladies’ shop. Or the kind of shop that sells assorted leather goods.)

    I desperately want a default replacement of the Human Statue, I really do. I think I’m waiting on Sunni’s templates, cos I have an idea– just gotta do it. Alas, there’s no jesterish hat, but I think Daislia’s Altair hood would work well. It’s only got one layer.

    I haven’t tested the babbyroaster, but it does in fact do exactly what it says on the tin, according to my learnings. It’s just too bad it doesn’t have that Moloch-like look to it. (No, the Lady doesn’t have a nemesis who runs hell for her, why do you ask?)

    You have, in fact, just described my volcano lot on my tester Twikkii Island. It’s a community lot, so there aren’t any poseboxes– that’d be a main and a half– but I’ve got the invisible firejets and everything. Trouble is, I’d want a Sim to ACTUALLY die up there, because that’s the kind of nutbar I am. … I did have a dead sheep up there on my first draft of the lot. And I do have a way to tie Sims up. I may have to settle for rescuing beautiful island maidens from the heathen ways of their tribesmen, and beg sanctuary at one of the Lady’s missions for the remainder of the vacation. (And considering the missions are actually super-cheap hotels attached to chapels anyway…)

  7. Lol, very true re: adultery and other requirements. Unless, of course, you have ACR. 😉

    The Rogue’s Fantasy sounds like an awesome name for a hat shop. Though it seems like a name that would not sit well with the menfolk. “I don’t want any rogue’s fantasies on my wife’s/daughter’s/sister’s/mother’s head! Or anywhere else on her, for that matter!” I think the Rogue’s Fantasy will just have to be run by a woman. 😉

    Ooh, default replacement Human Statue. That sounds like fun! A jester type-one would be even more fun. *imagines jester Human Statues scaring unsuspecting Sims silly*

    And oh boy! At first I was sure that the babbyroaster didn’t roast babbies — but when I first saw that upload, I didn’t know who Pescado was. Of course, now … well, naturally it would roast babbies. Otherwise Pescado wouldn’t put his name to it.

    Watch, next thing he’ll come out with will be a Thoma$$ roaster. 😉

    That’s right, something tells me poseboxes wouldn’t work on a community lot. (Plus you’d have to, you know, plan ahead and stuff to use them. And who wants to do that?) And that does answer how you had that volcano in the background of some of your testerhood pics! I was wondering if that was a lot or neighborhood deco or what.

    Your idea, regardless of the fact that it does not include actual death, sounds pretty awesome. You’re going to have to take pics, you know that, right? 😉

    Tee hee. I’d love to read that kind of story.

  8. Ahh, ACR. The trouble you are responsible for… Still, there’s no way I’d take it out. I like my Sims having a sex drive that I don’t have to manage. Means if I direct ’em to Try for Baby, it’s for storyline (or testing) purposes.

    Well, according to Hello Dolly, “All lady milliners are suspected of being wicked women.” If you’re going to be the subject of gossip no matter what, why not have a little fun with it? (Either that or claim a rogue’s fantasy would be a modest, loyal woman, IE, Robin Hood and Maid Marian.) Although it also makes me want to build a bawdy house and name it The Sisters of Sweet Mercy or Indefatigable Compassion or something.

    The only decent jester hair mesh I know of won’t work– too many alpha layers– but a hood and maybe something on the mesh with the stripey pants only a fair bit more accurate sounds pretty good to me. Er, a hood on this mesh, since GoS is down (I intend to beg for someone to fix it for teens once GoS comes back up, since it gender-converts so easily).

    My University’s secret society may have one. I’ve already decided they’re going to be a small cult dedicated to that most stalwart and misunderstood servant of the Lady, the Grim Reaper. (What can I say, Discworld books make one sympathetic toward Death.) Or an invisible recolor of one with a bunch of rocks and a firepit or something. I don’t know. Experiments are needed. (And yet I felt so damn bad about feeding Zombie to the Cowplant…)

    Many have clamored for a way to sacrifice or just kill and eat townies, but babies only use one of two meshes, so a roast baby is simple. Townies tend to be more random. Soup was suggested.

    Poseboxes might WORK on a community lot, but what a pain in the ass to keep the rest of, you know, the community from wandering in and spoiling your shot. I have enough trouble on my home lots when the sun suddenly sets. And yes indeed! My volcano is a mighty hill with a hole in it. Somehow I managed to get the steam vents set inside from neighborhood view, and in lot view there is fire. The witch doctor’s hut is right across the street, but I need to finish playtesting it before I actually make it into a secret lot.

    Of course I’ll take pics. Someday there will be a legacy challenge photostory thingy… once I finish enough of my defaults that Crayola Plastic Syndrome becomes a rare, rare thing. I have founders waiting for me in Body Shop! (Founders who need a little going-over, now that I have more eyes and skin and hair.) I may need more pretty Twikkii girls, however, but it’s ludicrously tempting to make a TON of Twikkii Islanders. Delicious Castaway Stories crap makes it fun.

  9. OMG the Castaway Stories stuff. I have WAY too much of that. Too many clothes, too many objects for the few native Sims I’ll have to redo (at some point, at some point)! Not mention all the pretties I’ll have to add to the lots. AND the other objects I’ll have to experiment with. (Like that potion mixer. If it works properly, sounds like something that would be perfect in your average witch or wizard’s basement!)

    I agree with you about ACR — now that I have it tweaked to my satisfaction, I have no desire to take it out. 🙂 I’m just going to have to get better about letting the AUTONOMOUS part of it play more of a role in my story, and letting go of my control-freakish ways.

    *giggles at bawdy house names* Though they do make a certain amount of sense … as Rabbi Brad Hirshfield points out, “After all, how many other things do couples do together which culminate in their screaming, ‘Oh my God’?”

    The hood mesh looks awesome! I’d love to see that on a court jester! *adds court jester to the list of Things She Has to Add to Albion*

    … Though really, Bors could work well for that position. He’s already the laughingstock of half the kingdom. 😉

    Townie soup! Sounds appetizing! Especially for those stupid AL townies. Since I forgot to do clean templates for AL. *smacks forehead* First, we kill all the townies, I swear. And I like your secret society idea! Mine … are just annoying, lol. Haven’t thought of any real reason for them yet; when I do they’ll probably end up in the story.

    The witchdoctor is a brave, brave man to live across the street from an active volcano. Or is he just so awesome that he knows when the Fire God is going to piss off the Earth God and can get out of the way in time?

    Can’t wait to see your pics! And lol, Hat — there can never be too many pretty island girls. 😉

  10. The potion doodad DOES work; Serviette (one of my tester Servos; it amused me to give her a name that’s French for ‘napkin’) sells potions from it in her front yard along with potions from the assorted witch cauldrons. The elixir of life from there is POTENT STUFF YO. It rockets your Sim right back to the very beginning of their current life stage.

    Luckily you can have autonomous Try for Baby set to married only, although I hardly ever seem to do that. For me, it makes something like a neighborhood legacy challenge kingdom thingy a little less like a Sim Eugenics Program– I had fun with my upper class founders and will do the same thing again. Eight young adults, four male, four female, sharing a dormitory with nowhere to woohoo. Random chemistry, all Sims told to check out all other Sims of the target gender (sorry, founders do not get to be gay. Their kids can be), and then left to their own devices as far as courtship goes.

    The Lady does not prohibit prostitution. (The Lady doesn’t specifically prohibit much at all; Her official stance is probably “I gave you Free Will and Autonomy; surely you can figure it all out.”) It is not necessarily smiled upon by authority figures or the Church (who consider sexual matters to be a distraction), but if the Lady didn’t want people enjoying sex, surely She wouldn’t have made it so much fun.

    The hood IS awesome. It’s from Daislia’s Altair set, and I’ve done it in colors to match my heraldry, that version, which was mostly just a gender-conversion test, and I’ve got a color map done for parti-colored hoods. Damn shame GoS is down or I’d link you.

    Feel free to steal it! I’m using the Graveyard Grim statue from TheJim07’s set. I wanted an old and dangerous cult type feel to the secret society, and it kinda hit me that THAT would probably be the best possible use of a Grim Reaper statue ever. Bummer about the AL townies; they are fugtastic. Stupid templates. I left the Maxis-only templates in without realizing that if Kaylynn Langeraak had some friends in Pleasantview and thus couldn’t be ditched, the AL townies might have some friends in Belladonna Cove and likewise be un-ditchable. Blarg. Clean templates now, must re-do neighborhood and sundry decorations. But I have some shiny new decorations now and I’ve still got all my lots saved and I have a MUCH BETTER idea for the University. Also much better terrains for what I wanted it to look like. Blessing in disguise! Now I just have to figure out if it’s fake French or fake Greek.

    The Witchdoctor is required to live up there next door to the Fire God, so he can keep an eye on things and determine when a sacrifice is needed and what shape the sacrifice ought to take. Also to stand in the way of the Fire God’s wrath and BE a sacrifice, if necessary. Course, he probably won’t live to find out if standing in front of a lava floe (flow? Ice floe, lava… what?) saved the village, but hey…

  11. Hoo boy, that’s one hell of an Elixer of Life! Mix that with the Holy Grail doodad and — whoa. You’ve got yourself one spring chicken!

    Do you use ACR 1.0 or 2.0? I’m still using 1.0 because I’m not sure if all the kinks are worked out with 2.0 yet. (Even if it’s not technically 2.0. Two-point-something.) THough if 1.0 does come with “try for baby married only,” I NEED TO SET THAT FOR EVERYONE! At least then I can fiddle with my ladies’ ACR scores and let them be more actually autonomous, instead of setting most of them to “spouse only” so I don’t get bastard babies left, right and center that I somehow have to explain.

    Fun fact: When I first installed ACR and was fiddling with the settings, Bianca Ferreira had a brief fling with Martin Pelles!

    Next time one of my Sims gets abducted, I probably will make over the SS Lot. Once I get an idea for it — I mean, your idea is great and I might steal it, but before I go crazy making over the lot, I kinda want to know I’m going to use it for something, you know? It definitely won’t be with this current batch of college kids (as in anyone who’s in college RIGHT NOW) because I’ve already got way too much going on with them. But someday, someday, there will be a use for the SS folks.

    THe plus side is that the Academie Le Tour SS already has a cowplant, so that makes the whole “Sacrifice to the Grim Reaper” thing that much easier!

    Decisions, decisions — fake French or fake Greek? Hmm … Greek is kinda overdone with colleges, you know? I mean all those columns and arches and partially clothed women all over the place. Fake French might be a bit more unique. 😉

    Brave man, the Witch Doctor. VERY brave man.

    And according to the Almighty Google, it appears to be lava “flow.” “Floe” just tells me it searched for “flow” and to learn how to spell. 😉

  12. I think I’m on version 1 of ACR. I got it a while back and didn’t grab the beta version. I forget where the control is– overrides, I think. Maybe acceptance. You can also dial down risky woohoo, but I always dial that sucker way up.

    Gotta find uses for everything, of course! And I don’t blame you for wanting a look at the existing lot. I was using Academie Le Tour before I discovered you’re not supposed to delete anybody from the Family Bin and saved a bunch of their buildings. My plan is to make a sacrificial student, plop her on an empty lot, money-cheat all to hell and gone, do the career reward objects cheat thing, decorate like mad… and then kill my sacrificial student, so not only is there a cowplant and a cult and a bone phone and what-have-you, there’s a ghost. So it’s not just the mysterious cult headquarters, it’s the mysterious HAUNTED cult headquarters.

    Fake French makes use of my rescued Academie buildings. Fake Greek– or fake Greco-Roman– makes the decorating style easier. Or I could go for the Greco-Roman architecture and slap faux-French names on everything.

    He’s got a sacred duty. Gotta do your sacred duties.

    Google would probably know.

  13. Probably version one, then. I’ll definitely hunt through the options next time I get in-game. Then I can set all the ladies’ autonomy scores to dynamic … except for those people who would never cheat, ever. 😉 They can stay at “Spouse Only.”

    Oh. And Sims of the Church get 0 autonomy. If they’re woohooing, it’s because I want them to.

    Your idea for the SS Death Cult building sounds pretty snazzy. One of these days I’m going to redo Academie Le Tour, so far all I’ve done is remove modern trappings from the existing buildings that are likely to end up in pictures. (Oh, and I completely redid the interior of the psychodelic coffee house. That’s the Llama and Lion.) But one massive rebuilding project at a time. 😉

    Tee hee, I like your combination idea — Fake Greek & Fake French! Why choose when you can have both?

  14. ACR: the cause of and solution to all your Sims adulterous problems?

    Of course they are. Mine have that and the turn-off of underwear, so they lose some chemistry steam when it comes time to hop in the sack. (Underwear is the default dress state for whoohoo, as read by the game. Twas my first way to try to keep the clergy chaste before discovering the fun of ACR.)

    I redid a lot of the Academie’s buildings… Romara’s coffee shop turns into a rather nice cozy little pub. I also grabbed a couple of buildings from MTS to turn into dorms, and I find the Little Aristocrat from Parsimonious makes a cozy high-class cottage for a Uni ‘hood. Good place for wealthy siblings or a scholarly couple, if you move a few walls around. And of course I built a chapel– one of the fun things about InTeen is that it supports young adult marriage and pregnancy, as well as the teen version. Also miscarriage.

    Many churches and cathedrals were built in the Roman style before Gothic caught on– why not?

  15. Yeah, pretty much, lol!! (And it turns out that I’m already not allowing the unmarried to try for baby! Go figure, every now and then I underestimate my intelligence …)

    Good idea for making their turn-off underwear. I’ll have to do that! I usually try to give them rare turn-ons — like stink or werewolfism or Servoism or something. Because I don’t have that many werewolves and Servos running around, it keeps the heart-farts down. 😉

    At least as long as the monks and nuns aren’t hanging around the whorehouse with all those platinum Romance Sims …

    Nice ideas, I never thought to use the Little Aristocrat for a college cottage! I took a couple houses from the Lot Bin (the Bonny Bungalow and Tiny Tudor, I think) and redid them as cottages for Isabel and for Mordred & Rosette when they were at uni. (Dindrane spent her four years in a dorm — lucky her! 😉 )

    One of these days, I’m probably going to cave and get InTeen … *sigh* One of these days, one of these days. 😉

  16. I used to go with the supernaturals as turn-ons for my monks, but… well, gosh, I like supernaturals so much and yet want them to be about half-and-half shunned by the church… (Alienfaries? Okay, no problem there, basically a child of rape and they tend to have a reputation toward being very smart. Plantsims? We have a garden! Servos? Only if they have very bad relationships with their owners and ‘run away’ from home. Then it’s protection. Werewolves, not so much. Vampires, hah, no. Zombies… nope. Witches, I haven’t decided yet. Possibly you just have to be a very GOOD witch.) Contradicting turn-ons, like Unemployed and Hard Worker, might be good, too.

    I think I’ll put off the cathouse until I end up with a fallen woman or two, myself. I have a ton of backstory to work on while I try to get things how I want them, anyway. Mythology and character-driven, both.

    As far as college residences go… I haven’t playtested Fimbulvinter yet, but I’ve got it set across from my fishing, salvage, and import docks as my official fishing village (unless I change my mind, my main kingdom is on the Belladonna Cove terrain, with the weird little splot of road waaaaaay off in one corner), I use the Sleeping Beauty Cottage just on the edge of the woods even if I have no idea who I’ll ever move into it– might use it in my college town, too– but the one I use for my noble-kids’ dorm is the Royal Manor. I just tore up the upstairs so it’s got four teeny tiny bedrooms on each side. Single beds only, no sofas, nowhere to woohoo. Ladies on one side, gents on the other, a bathroom for each sex, kitchen, study, and game room downstairs… A little crowded, but it worked so nice I’ma use it again. I also remodeled but haven’t playstest the Knight’s Tale Manor as dorms. The actual University buildings are much more Greco-Roman, so the overall feel I think I’m going for is ‘education and vineyards.’

    InTeen is a fiddly mod, it really is… but! I heartily recommend it if you’re willing to keep track of whether or not your other mods are compatible or not (most are) and otherwise use it wisely. It’s an absolute bitch to find period TF clothes with pregmorphs, and teenagers don’t get pregnant from alien abductions, but it’s like ACR– now I’ve got it I wouldn’t give it up. Unless someone took it in their head to make a more elegant, streamlined version now that EA won’t be adding craptons of new spaghetti code with every expansion.

  17. I can’t see werewolves and vampires being welcomed with open arms by the church — particularly not if you keep the mythology of vampires having to suck other people’s blood in order to survive … I mean, especially if the church is running a hospital, that all just seems like way too much temptation!

    Oh, I like Fimbulvinter! I might have to plop that down in my hood across from the barracks, for family/officer housing. (Probably family housing, maybe I’ll have the officers all own homes when they don’t live in the barracks.) And fun fact — the Royal Manor was actually Lance & Gwen’s first home. (Then Gwen had twins and needed a double nursery.) Knight’s Tale Manor looks awesome too, thanks for pointing it out!

    That makes sense, about InTeen I mean. I just hesitate because I know about the compatibility issues, and because of the pregmorph issue. Someday I’ll break down and download it — but not quite yet. 🙂

  18. Werewolves undergo a personality change and like scaring people, which is unsuitable for someone devoted to being excellent to others (although, like human sacrifice, the Lady kind of goes “Awesome!” This may just be because I’m so darn fond of Lupe and Zombie, however, the happiest, meanest couple in Tester Valley. They love their kids, they woohoo all the DAMN time, and they steal everyone’s newspapers ever). Vampires can only come out at night, and… well, I’m considering running Black Spirit’s vampire mods, where they actually CAN drink blood. Which would absolutely make them unsuitable for the clergy. … Probably the Church will sell cures for these things.

    I redecorated the heck out of Fimbulvinter– it’s a gorgeous lot, it really is. How’s the barracks thing going? Or do you not quite have enough young men going for soldiers yet?

    The funny thing about InTeen and hack compatibility… I am a hack addict. Mmm delicious hacks. I have over three hundred of them, INCLUDING InTeen and a couple of its flavor packs. Most modders will outright say if something is INcompatible with InTeen, but on the whole you only really have to look out for hacks that alter age duration, pregnancy, or age-restricted interactions (like Poifectly Poiple’s child werewolves hack). And of course, lean on the good old HCDU. Clothes are harder to find, but I know of some default replacements for Maxis meshes– base game, Teen Style Stuff, H&M, and Seasons. The base game version has that one long dress with the slight fishtailing at the bottom that ZoeJ uses for a lot of her stuff, and the shorty nightgown that was used in the Dark Project. If you want to use Bloom’s sexy feet, though, you either have to be comfortable enough with SimPE to weed them out or ask me and I’ll give you my edited versions. (not that I USE all these meshes, but.) Speaking of Bloom, he’s done a few meshes, too. Kaylynn06 has done a version of that dress with the tassel without the tassel for teens, so slapping some adult textures on that mesh is easy-peasy. It’s really not a LOT of variety, but Silvain Shadows has been embarking on a pregmorph-adding mission.

    Here’s hoping I didn’t break any links.

  19. Isn’t it great how mean Sims will make you fall in love with them like that? I swear, if Accolon isn’t on your lot to steal your newspaper, it’s because he’s already got it and is running like hell — but I love him to pieces anyway. 🙂

    The barracks are built and sitting next door to the castle, waiting … waiting … waiting … when some of the guys get out of college, then it’ll have people in it. Until then, it’s … well. Waiting.

    Three hundred hacks?!? WOW! Every time I add a new one, I always cross my fingers and pray my game won’t explode! I run the HCDU, but the only conflicts it comes up with never seem to have any impact on my game.

    *nabs Maxis default replacement meshes* Hey, if some of ZoeJ’s gowns work as maternity wear, at least I’d have that for merchant/noble girls if they get pregnant early!

    And actually I don’t use Bloom’s sexyfeet, so that isn’t a worry for me. (I figure I’m playing enough with different bodyshapes/showerproof skins, I don’t want to add more things to the already-burgeoning downloads folder. 😉 )

    Thanks for all the links, Hat!

  20. Hey! Hey! Look who’s back!

    I actually got to observe one of the sweetest animations I’ve ever seen in Sims 2 thanks to a Good Witch who is ridiculously mean (note to self: yes, the personalities of random model-sims do in fact matter). She teased her kid so hard he ran into the next room to cry about it, and then she followed him, knelt down, and consoled him. What the HELL, Glinda, okay. (Yeah, names don’t matter in the testerhood, either. The Tester family includes Guy, Donna, Nina, Beau, and Beau and Nina’s seven or eight daughters, who all have names that mean ‘girl’ (Chica, Sheila, Lassie), except for Surprise– one half of a set of twins– and Sunset, because I was out of things that meant ‘girl.’

    Well, hey. Waiting happens? I have a horse trader’s business that pretty much functions as hood deco.

    Yep. Over three hundred. I admit it is a little bit nuts– my pants aren’t tight, they’re impeccably tailored! Now that GoS is back up, I can link you to the list I posted. Probably ought to put that up at the DW sometime. I’ve updated it since then.

    You’ve got the AF pregmorph defaults from The Mystical One, right? Cos those are invaluable. And Cynnix’s pregmorph for Aligeth’s AM nightgown mesh?

    Oooh, you’re using different body shapes? I’m jealous. I can’t find nearly enough period meshes for that. If I could, I’d have androgynous girls joining the army and random big burly men for no good reason. I’m saving it for the alien invasion ‘hood, where all I need is the motoracer mesh and a good blockfoot nude.

  21. Lol, the only different bodyshapes I’ve been brave enough to try out are the Bodybuilder and RenGal — and I don’t have too many of the RenGals running around. But all the male adult/elder Three Lakes guys are going to be bodybuilders, as is the Sports hobby maven. (The Fitness hobby maven in my ‘hood is a woman, and I don’t have any female bodybuilder meshes. More to the point, I don’t even know where I’d begin to look for medieval female bodybuilder clothing.)

    Yup, I’ve got all those defaults! 😀 My pregnant ladies’ (and gents’!) wardrobes are nice and expanded.

    *does cartwheels for GOS and sings Hallelujah Chorus* Ahem.

    *looks through Hat’s list* Wow. That’s a lot of hacks. And they all work? Good for you! 😀 I’ll hae to study that list in more depth later.

    And OMG, that is so cute!! I mean, not so cute that Glinda (the good-mean witch?) was teasing her son, but that console interaction — aww!! Free Will can lead to amazing things sometimes. 🙂

  22. I keep looking longingly at the lean bodybuilder over at Kielen’s, but there haven’t been any Medieval meshes for that shape yet. I like it because it’s the Maxis shape, just… a little beefier. Most of the bodybuilders are too huge for my tastes– I’m looking forward to the androgynes, though, male and female. Skinny little bookish scholars! Flat-chested girls!

    Awesome! There are apparently some teen pregnant morphs on the way, and some more men– Cynnix saw my wishlist and decided since she wanted those, too, she’d make them. Blows my mind, but I guess sometimes you just need to know that somebody else wants what you want, too. Makes me all giddy, really. (P’raps there’ll have to be some famous midwife back in the mists of history named Cynnix.)

    Oh yes, they all work. If they didn’t all work, I’d weed through and find what didn’t. I have about twenty conflicts with the HCDU, but they’re all expected ones– InTeen and flavor packs, InTeen B and Pregnant Sims Wear Any Outfit (which loads after InTeen, so that’s okay), a couple of objects from some paysite that seem to conflict with each other but actually don’t…

    Glinda and Elphie are both on the mean side. Sandra, my neutral witch (she looked like a Sandra) is actually pretty nice. Console seems to be autonomous-only, too– I’ve never had it pop up as an option, and Glinda makes people cry all the TIME. (Elphie, Sandra, and Glinda, for the record.)

  23. … So no Nessarose? 😦 😉

    I’ve heard that console is an option, though, or maybe it’s only if you do the “Consolable Cry” from Paul’s Reaction Tester. At least, in theory it must exist, if Van can so consistently take pictures of it …

    Yeah, the bodybuilder is plenty huge — but I figured that might work for the Mountain men. When they were lads they ate four dozen eggs, and now that they’re grown they eat five dozen eggs — so they’re roughly the size of a barge, you know? 😉

    Androgyny with medieval clothing sounds like a fantastic combination. 🙂 I’ve got some guys who could do with a skinnier look — and maybe Heloise would do with a more androgynous look, too. 🙂 Once she hits college, that is.

    More male pregmorphs FTW!!

    Lol, it’s a good thing that most RKCers are fine with hacks out the window — I don’t know about you, but I think at this point, I’d go nuts without the few that I have. 😉

  24. They were my original models for those Sherahbim dress recolors– they’ll have actual places in the Real Kingdom, I just needed a few different ladies to model in the testerhood and yoinked ’em out of the Sim Bin. Besides, it’d be kind of hard to do a Sim without arms.

    Maybe that’s what Garcia was up to, then– usually I try to manage my Sims well enough that they don’t end up running into the next room sobbing, but you take your eyes of Glinda for a minute…

    … I helped stage that song in high school. My sister was a wench. And one of our silly girls got to jump in after that line with “He’s no barge, he’s a dream boat!” Audience cracked up. Not as hard as the choir teacher the first time he heard it done. What clothes are you using for your manly mountain men?

    I have my fingers crossed– the whole thing is a pet project of Aquilegia’s, so if she even does a couple of period-useful meshes, I will be the happiest little camper in the woods. One long dress/robe thing, one good tunic…

    Pregmorphs are ALWAYS for the win. Do want, baby.

    None of my hacks are cheaty hacks, either– nothing to make things easier. More period, less broken, less rage-inducing (like, say, Get the Closest Plate, Stupid), but never easier. … Okay, okay, I DO have Waterproof Servos, but that’s to reduce rage. Seeing them run amok after fixing a broken shower is funny! … The first time. Likewise, ACR excludes Servos by default, but other Sims don’t necessarily exclude Servos by default. They can and will autonomously invite them to join in the hot tub.

    Besides, when I get off my duff and do my wooden servos on Amaryll’s androgyne mesh, they won’t be metal and thus shouldn’t have problems with water anyway. (Unless you choose to say it mucks with the spell on your golems.)

  25. That would be an interesting bodyshape — armless! You’d almost have to put the magic shoes on every outfit Nessa wore, to explain why she isn’t falling over.

    And I don’t know how you’d explain the telekinesis whenever she tried to do … anything. 😉

    Tee hee, Beauty and the Beast is my favorite Disney movie. (And I just finished writing a paper on the fairy tale. So I’ve kind of got it on the brain.) That line IS hilarious! Why didn’t Disney think of it? 😉

    Most of the clothes I’m using for my manly men are from the Dark Project. I also used some of Zoej’s Knight outfits. I’ve basically just been looking for an excuse to download & use ’em — and I found one. 😉

    Hmm, I think most of my hacks fall under the “less rage/fix brokeness/add cool newness category,” too. Most of them. “Talk to Plants Faster” does make it easier, as does “Antibusinessdecay.” Hey, the Ferreiras have five of those suckers, and if I had to visit them all every day to get a decent profit out of them, it would take me forever to get through their turn!

    Though now that I think about it, ACR does make that 20 woohoo want much easier …

    And I like your reasoning with the wooden servos. 😉 Water doesn’t hurt wood — so why should it hurt a wooden servo?

  26. Disney did think of it; it was stolen whole cloth from a Beauty and the Beast stage show Disney had in Fantasyland in the early ’90s, back when there were actually shows there (and when it was called Videopolis) and not just OMG PRINCESSES. … Er, yes, hello, I was raised on Disney, name any song from any full-length animated feature from Snow White on up through Tarzan and I can give you at least a double-handful of lyrics from memory. There are many, many ways that I am a nerdbucket.

    *pokes ZoeJ’s knight outfits* You know, if those are mapped the same as the alpha tunic, you could make blank ones using my tunics as templates.

    … I had no idea business ratings deteriorated. Ah well, Serviette’s two businesses have ridiculous numbers of stars, and she lives in the testerhood anyway.

  27. Business ratings don’t deteriorate, sorry I wasn’t clear on that. The amount of money you make every day if you call the manager does. (And the amount of money you make even before the deterioration sets in is ridiculously small, something like 1/3 of the average of the money you made in your last five business sessions.)

    Oh, Disney did? Huh. I saw a production of the B&B stage show but I don’t remember that line — maybe because I was revelling in the new songs and the fact that the Beast actually got to sing!

    Tee hee, I was raised on Disney too. It helped being a child (as in, you know, a little kid) of the 90’s when they had a new animated blockbuster practically every summer. 🙂

    Blank tunics would be awesome. One of these days I’ll poke around with GIMP and see what I can do.

  28. Ahh, so you don’t make as much if you don’t go in yourself. Makes sense.

    Oh, no, not the Broadway version– though that version is spectacular and I’d love to see it somewhere besides the stage in my own head someday. This was just… the kind of little thing Disney used to do whenever they had a new movie out. They’d throw together a stage show and there’d be some singing and it’d be a lot of fun. Now there’s a Princess meet-and-greet there, instead (but they do have a full theatre over in California Adventure. It just so happens that their Aladdin show (where Jasmine finally gets her damn solo) has been running there since the park opened).

    Yep, I was ten when The Little Mermaid came out. Hello, Disney Renaissance.

    <a href=""There are blanks in my sets. Yellow is coming, though. So is a white version with non-cross heraldry, and green with non-Maxis heraldry. I just want to get everything absolutely finished first, because I am a nerd.

  29. Well, that makes sense — I mean a little musical show to promote the new film. I wonder if they did anything for the Princess & the Frog?

    Awesome!! Again, one of these days, I’m going to have to open up GIMP and see if I can figure something out.

    One of these days. ^_^ When my brain is working again.

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