Like the Sims games that came before it, "Sims 3" inspired many people to create mods and custom content for the game. Of great popularity are Story Progression mods. "Sims 3" did not include its own story progression. Non-player characters (NPCs) would not marry, get jobs, have children or otherwise progress their own stories. Only those families you were actively playing would progress. A couple of mods were made to simulate this progression within the game.
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Story progression is when "townies" (the name commonly used for NPCs) go through their own lives while you play the family of your choice. In previous releases of "The Sims," this would occur naturally. In "Sims 3," however, it did not occur, but townies were much more accessible to play. Many people have felt that part of the charm of "The Sims" was that these townies would progress through their lives at the same time as the family actively being played.
Originally two separate mods, they were ultimately combined after the creator of Twallen stopped updating the mod. Primarily marketed as NRaas mods or StoryProgression, this mod encompasses more than just the standard story progression. You can customise it extensively: whether it allows romance, deaths, pregnancy, etc.. The interface is simple to use and it reports on a regular basis what has happened to which townies, so you can easily keep track of what is going on in your town.
AwesomeMod handles story progression much the same way as the Twallen/NRaas mod. It does add some special traits and interactions, as well as some overall "fixes" for the game (such as clothing or hair category fixes). AwesomeMod also does a "cleanup" in the game, such as removing extraneous vehicles and objects that have been created by bugs or left by Sims that have died or left. This cleanup enables the game to run a bit smoother, without having to handle the extra, unneeded objects.
The people behind NRaas have made separate plug-ins of a kind that allow things, such as managing pregnancy (between same gender, teenagers, etc.) and the general cheats some people go for (trait and mood manipulation, selecting NPC Sims, etc.). These generally work fine along with AwesomeMod, but like all custom content, it is best to back up your game before attempting to use them. This is especially important as some of the mods are not made by the original NRaas team, but submitted by others to use alongside the other mods.
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