Youtuber The English Simmer is a bit of a paradox within her successful, growing channel. One one side is her innate love of The Sims wherein she puts her various families across many software generations into fun, or deadly, little scenarios for your sick pleasure. On the other are the linear, story-driven titles that have come to affect her and connect with her on an emotional level.
Find out a little about both sides below as we chat with Mollie about so much Sims and other pieces of her growing, evolving hobby.
1. Hello Mollie. We usually take our first question as an opportunity to find out how the Youtubers name came about, but yours - The English Simmer - seems pretty self explanatory. Your English and play The Sims, we gotcha. However your channel does not solely consist of Sims content; did you start feeling burned out by just posting Sims videos or was there something more behind bringing additional games to the channel?
Yep, that pretty much covers the name! I didn’t feel burnt out by The Sims, as I love that game so much and it is constantly changing. When you’re starting to feel burnt out, you can completely change up your gameplay. But I’ve always loved gaming in general. I grew up in a big family so we pretty much had every game console possible whilst growing up. I just wanted my channel to be filled with games I love to play.
2. Interestingly, those other games that you post Let's Plays about (Life is Strange, Unravel, Oxenfree etc.) are story-driven and linear by design. Jumping from our last question, what is it about this opposite side of the spectrum that's brought you to post your own playthroughs?
Story-driven, choice based games are some of my very favourites. I’ve always been interested in stories and creative writing so these games really appeal to me. I feel like you can easily connect with the characters and grow to love them. Take ‘Life Is Strange’ for example, I became so immersed in that game and Max’s relationships with the other characters that I felt every consequence hit me, just as they hit Max.
3. Still, The Sims is the main focus of your channel with your focus spanning from role-playing various family types to completing challenges laid out by the internet. What made you decide that this was the series you wanted to make videos on?
The Sims has been my favourite game franchise since it was first released. I remember when my brother first came home with the original base game and I would sit and watch him play for hours (even though it would always end with him killing off his sims by trapping them in the pool). I would draw every house I was planning on building and always had little stories in my mind for each sim I created, even at the age of 6. I’ve loved every installment of the game as much as it’s predecessor and I just feel like there are endless possibilities to the creativity of The Sims.
4. The Sims has been an ever growing franchise with a ridiculous amount of content coming to the four main iterations. Do you feel the game has been growing in the right direction? Is there anything you would add to the current formula to improve it?
I definitely think the game has been growing in the right direction. Every installment has been different but has kept the original formula of the player being in control of so many aspects of life, whether they’re realistic aspects such as keeping a job and supporting a family, or crazier ones like being a vampire or a famous celebrity. I feel like the current formula has been focusing recently on the social life of sims, so I would love to see family life being brought into the game soon.
5. You recently posted on your Twitter that you are going to be attending Insomnia this year, the UK's biggest gaming festival. How important do you think it is to attend gaming conventions as a YouTuber?
I’ve recently just started attending these kinds of conventions but I get so much enjoyment out of them. It’s so nice to be able to introduce yourself to like-minded people who have the same interests as you. So many YouTubers attend, alongside so many gaming industry influences; therefore conventions are really handy for networking. You can meet fellow creators to collaborate with, find new games that could appear on your channel in the future or just speak to those that help make your favourite games. I’d highly recommend any YouTubers to attend if they can.
6. In your YouTube "About You" section, you have a list of game series that you have completed. Do you think that it is important as a Youtuber to complete any series that you start?
I feel as if the best thing to do as a YouTuber is to enjoy the content you are producing. If you’re producing content that you would enjoy watching, then it’s likely that others will enjoy it to. In saying that, if you aren’t enjoying a series anymore, explain to your viewers and it might be that they feel the same way. Just be honest and love what you do.
7. You've also recently been interviewed for the official Sims website in a Simmer Spotlight. How cool is it to be recognized by the very place and property for which a lot of your work is done through?
It is the coolest thing! I never thought a fun little hobby I started in university would open so many opportunities for me. I’ve had the chance to test games before their release, speak to the producers of a game franchise I’ve been playing since I was young and do interviews like this one. I’ve met so many amazing friends through the gaming community and YouTube itself. It’s just been an incredible ride so far; I hope it continues for a long time.
8. Last but not least, do you have any hardware recommendations for fledgling Youtubers?
I can only really talk on the gaming side of things, so I’d highly recommend a gaming PC/laptop that can run the games you plan to play fairly well. That’s not saying go out and spend thousands, it may be that you don’t like creating content once you actually start. But videos are always more enjoyable when there isn’t tons of lag. I also think a good quality microphone can make a big difference. There are some great USB entry-level microphones out there so definitely shop around.
Thanks to Mollie for answering our questions! You can wave around and shout jibberish at her on Twitter, her Youtube channel, or her incredibly English and official website.