Sims

Mateas brought up characters needing to be "believable enough so that the participant cares about them (Cyberdrama)." This was a statement in regards to the game The Sims. I found this interesting because this point is similar to issues of virtual reality, emotional bonds, and this unreal world that people want to experience. It is only realistic that one would need to care for a Sims character to want to advance his/her character in the game however, I would ask what is it and how is it that we do care for these characters? In class we were talking about similar issues and somebody said something along the lines of "you don't get attached to the character; you are only frustrated because you lost." Despite the fact that The Sims is a different type of game compared to say a game like Mario Kart why is it that we get attached to a character? I wonder if caring for a Sims character has anything to do with the fact that the game is not based in a fantasy land with mythical creatures but rather on human life, day to day routines and human activities.
This even has me question why we can be so intrigued by a game that reflects human life however you are in charge of how things go and how things are played out. I remember when I was young that one of my sisters would was obsessed with The Sims for a while. I never really got in to it but can see how it could be intriguing. I think that most of the incentive comes with the natural game factor of progressing in the game to say be able to buy/build a larger house and so on. But why and how do we learn to care? If your character dies on The Sims it is upsetting but why? Is it that the main reason concerns the fact that everything that you built up to is now gone or that you actually feel as if you may have failed your character? I guess what interests me is the fact that this is something that Wright had to consider and how we can be so invested in these false worlds. I wonder if a lot has to do with power; feeling that you are in power because you can to a certain extent dominate over what goes on compared to other games.
Also, in class we were talking about the difference between characters in a novel compared to a game. Somebody brought up interactivity and I would agree that interactivity has much to do with why games are intriguing but also why some might argue that you can have a connection with a game character. Some people like to imagine their own world or what a world would be like in a novel and others like the virtual world.