Generally favorable reviews - based on 30 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 30
  2. Negative: 0 out of 30
  1. 100
    Fans of the series will lap it up whilst those that find The Sims to be boring and pointless will not be in any way swayed.
  2. 100
    Even the addition of crazy new Social moves like Break Dance and Booty Tease make interactions with other Sims much more fun than they were in previous titles. [Jan 2003, p.48]
  3. I never thought I'd find myself saying that I enjoy connectivity more than online play, but this just happens to be the case with Bustin' Out. [Jan 2004, p.140]
  4. A vast improvement to an aging franchise, breathing a little more life into a concept that's days may be numbered.
  5. It's somehow mind-numbingly mundane and brilliantly addictive at the same time. [Jan 2004, p.92]
  6. 90
    This was my favorite version of Bustin' Out. Although the graphics are sharper on the Xbox version and the PS2 version boasts online multiplay, the GCN-to-GBA connectivity feature gives this one a notable edge.
  7. It's monotonous, mundane, and frightfully addictive - just the way I like 'em. [Jan 2004, p.132]
  8. Perhaps not as precise as using a mouse and keyboard, but the streamlined control system does do a great job of keeping the action consistent with a dual shock.
  9. Refines control, adds personality to character appearance and interaction, fills up on customization details and goes hog-wild with connectivity. [Feb 2004, p.146]
  10. This is a game without winners and losers. It's all about the personal satisfaction, and engrossing yourself in a wonderful game. Yes, I said a wonderful game.
  11. Sims fans will find the game very inviting, but will also find that other than going to various locations, seeing new items to buy, and experiencing the wild animations, this game is definitely not an overhaul of the series. Yet with the new unlockables, it is hard to resist this delicious title.
  12. Sims fans should bust out of their homes and bust on down to their favorite store to pick up The Sims Bustin’ Out.
  13. Makes good, solid improvements over its predecessor and stands on its own as a great version of The Sims for consoles.
  14. 82
    Without any gameplay advancements, I can't say this is really an improvement over the original. However, the GCN/GBA link up is a really nice feature, especially if you have a troublesome Sim.
  15. Tweaked sounds and graphics make it look slightly better and sound slightly nicer, but it’s not really a sequel in the true sense of the word. The Sims Bustin’ Out adds logical improvements to an already winning formula without blowing us away with any stunning revelations.
  16. Slow, often frustrating, but frighteningly engrossing at the same time. If you're after a leisurely, open-ended experience then it's highly recommended. [NGC]
  17. If you liked the Sims, Bustin’ Out is a great addition. Much of the series’ originality has lost its shine, but the mechanics and playability remain extremely good even though there’s not much in the way of plot.
  18. 7 / 9 / 8 / 8 - 32 gold [Vol 788; 23 Jan 2004]
  19. Worth a look-see, but memory card requirements effectively banish this one to the realm of "Either buy it, or don't bother."
  20. 80
    It’s really no more than yet another extension of a five-year-old gameplay device. Concept, meet the breaking point.
  21. It adds just enough to keep fans interested, but doesn't fix all the flaws or reinvent the game. With that said, the game has more focus, a bit more style, a lot more to do, and a definite ending if you choose to pursue it.
  22. Despite some flaws and relatively few improvements (on the PC this would be just another expansion pack), it still may be worth a purchase.
  23. The addition of goals and plenty of different unlockable locations and items does breathe new life into this old game, and slower meters and a more responsive interface lead to a good version of The Sims. However, this game is very similar to the original PS2 version and might not feel filling enough for those who already made that purchase.
  24. Despite being a massive fan of the franchise I couldn’t help but feel that the whole thing is starting to get old, despite the new features the games structure is basically the same.
  25. A fairly unremarkable Sims expansion pack on the same disc as a new cut of the original game.
  26. The GameCube and GBA versions have possibly the most exciting exclusive option, with players able to download special mini-games to their GBA which will earn them Simoleons and other goodies to use in the Cube game.
  27. While they did add various goals to keep console gamers occupied, they end up turning the game into more of a stressful mess than the passive pace of the original.
  28. Despite a veritable host of respectable changes and additions, this still can't live up to the standards of the original game. An improvement over the last console effort, but with so much more potential than is actually realised, Bustin' Out still disappoints a little. [Christmas 2003, p.126]
  29. 60
    And if the thought of cleaning up virtual garbage and keeping your sim familiar with the toilet isn't your idea of fun, steer clear. Love it or hate it, this is still "The Sims."
  30. There is more freedom in career choices, less intense caretaking, plus a few console specific features. But the gameplay is old hat for previous console players.
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 12 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 7
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 7
  3. Negative: 0 out of 7
  1. PennyE.
    Apr 2, 2007
    An excellent sims game. I would recommend this game to new and old fans alike.
  2. S.J.Donovan
    Oct 11, 2006
    I really liked the freedom of this game, especially the interaction between free and story mode. It's addictive and nonstop; I literally I really liked the freedom of this game, especially the interaction between free and story mode. It's addictive and nonstop; I literally would play it for entire days. Full Review »
  3. AlexanderR.
    Feb 11, 2004
    The best game ever!!!!!.