Vocabulary in Context: Video Game Meals

31 22/06/2022


Compiled by Katherine Schulten

Test your vocabulary and reading comprehension with this quiz based on the Times article "How The Sims Became the Internet’s Most Exciting Place to Eat."

Welcome to our new weekly interactive Vocabulary in Context Quiz, created with help from Vocabulary.com. We will be publishing a new one every Thursday this school year, and you can find them all here.

This week's quiz comes from an article published in February in the Food section.

Fill in the Blanks

Choose the word or phrase that BEST completes each blank in the following paragraphs.

Vocabulary in Context: Video Game Meals

In the last year, Kayla Sims began raising her own cows and chickens. She did a bit of traveling, trying dishes like bhel puri, tuna maki rolls, beef yakisoba and feijoada for the first time. She even did some cooking; one day, she made a crown roast and baked a birthday cake shaped like a hamburger.

But she didn’t need a farm or an airline ticket or a stove — just The Sims, the long-running video game that allows players to create characters, called Sims, and build a/anlife around them, from the houses they live in to the clothes they wear to the jobs they work.

For Ms. Sims (yes, that’s her birth name), one of the most parts of the game has been the chance to learn more about cooking, farming, foraging and cuisines from across the world — all from the comfort of her desk in Oviedo, Fla., where she streams herself playing The Sims on YouTube and Twitch under the username lilsimsie.

“There’s just no way you could have experienced all of those things in your lifetime,” said Ms. Sims, 22. But by playing The Sims, “you learn about a lot of other foods that you’ve never seen before. And I think that everyone probably has that experience.”

Since its debut in February 2000, The Sims has become one of the most successful PC video game franchises in history, with more than $5 billion in sales as of 2019, according to its publisher, Electronic Arts. Millions of players around the world log in each day to create Sims avatars and watch their lives play out in vivid fashion. The game’s popularity has only grown throughout the pandemic; Simmers, as fans call themselves,up 1.2 billion hours of play in 2021.

Part of that new and, for some, renewed interest may stem from a simple need to fight off boredom. But much of the game’s appeal can be chalked up to players’ ability to create an increasinglyvision of how their Sims live, dress and eat.

In early versions of the game, food was used simply to satisfy Hunger, one of a handful of basic needs that every character has, or to add an element ofwhen Sims traveled to new locales. But The Sims 4, released by the game developer Maxis in 2014, expanded the depth and realism of how players can interact with food.

“I think The Sims 4 was really where we made this conscious effort to recognize that food is more than a place,” said Lyndsay Pearson, a vice president on the creative side of The Sims, and a Maxis employee since 2002. (Electronic Arts acquired Maxis in 1997.)

Reading Comprehension

Now that you've read the first several paragraphs of this article, let's see how well you understood it.

Now that you've read the first several paragraphs of this article, which short summary below would you say BEST captures what the piece is about?

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