Technology: The Sims 2: Virtually Mortal

In The Sims 2, characters age and die, and are more captivating than ever

The one computer game you couldn't avoid at the big Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) in Los Angeles last week was The Sims 2. Its booth was front and center in the main hall, and it stood out like a Philip Roth novel atop a pile of Tom Clancy paperbacks.

After all, E3 is the insular annual confab of the video-games business, devoted to sound and fury and ever more realistic ways to annihilate the undead. (Resident Evil 4: Kill zombies with guns! Dead Run: Kill zombies with cars!) The Sims 2, by contrast, is a poignant, witty and fun interactive story...

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