EA announces The Sims 2 Pets

PC, handhelds and current-gen.

Electronic Arts has announced The Sims 2 Pets, a new PC expansion pack and standalone game for PS2, GameCube, PSP, Nintendo DS and GBA.

You can choose from cats, dogs, guinea pigs, birds and more, and there's a wide range of breeds available. Or you might prefer to create your own pet, customising everything from fur colour to body shape. You can also alter their personality, making them clever or stupid, for example.

Your Sims will be able to train their pets to shake paws, roll over, play dead and the like. And if the pets are found digging up the garden or scratching the furniture, they'll need disciplining. By using special codes, you can share pet accessories, fur types and markings with other Sims 2 Pets fans.

The different versions of the game will have unique features - the PC version, for example, will let you create designer pets such as Labradoodles, Puggles and Schnoodles. You can then register them to appear in Create-A-Pet as unique pedigrees. In addition, pets have three career paths open to them - show business, security and service - and five job levels to work through.

The PS2, GameCube and PSP versions will let you take your pet for a stroll down the park, where you can watch them make friends with other animals, and your Sim can chat with fellow pet owners. Or you can head to the town centre, where you'll be able to pick new clothing and accessories for your pet.

DS owners will be able to manage their own Pet Care Centre, where pets from all around will come to be pampered and groomed. You can also set up a pet shop and help other Sims choose their ideal animal companion. Selling pet fashions and accessories will earn you extra Simoleans, too.

And finally, the GBA version will let you choose from a range of new careers for your Sim, including vet and pet trainer. You can also adopt your own cat or dog, and take them for a stroll around the town of Barkersville. There are lots of tricks for pets to learn, and you can enter the World Championships to win big prizes.

The Sims 2 Pets is out later this year.

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