‘Nuts, Oh Coconuts!’ – Prof Plumbob and the Coconut Island saga

There’s few Sims worlds quite like ProfPlumbob’s Coconut Island that have proven to have as much entertainment in the process of awaiting its arrival as much as the world itself – the old adage of what was going on behind the stage being better than the show!

When the first Coconut Island arrived on the 5th January 2010, it set a new standard not merely in design, but in the way it was presented to prospective downloaders, with a beautifully laid out map and screenshots that weren’t a load of close ups to accentuate the good bits and hide the crappy bits, but tastefully shot panoramas that assured you that plenty of care and attention had gone into the creation.

From that point onward, anyone thinking they could proffer a Sim world on a ‘take it or leave it’ basis was in for a rude awakening, and anyone not willing to work as hard in the presentation of their labour of love could expect little in the way of people even willing to try their ‘precious’ out.

Unfortunately the enterprise did have one problem from the outset.

ProfPlumbob’s ego.

Having given it all of two days, he was not happy at being ignored, despite the praise it was getting.

Mind you, considering some of the stuff coming out from the soothsayers in some quarters.

‘A niche thing.’

Wrrrrrrroooooooooooooooooooooooooooonnnnnnnnnnnnnnngggggg!

Coconut Island went on to be one of the most popular downloaded Sims worlds ever, ProfPlumbob being one of those commencing the trend for smaller more beautifully detailed worlds against the continent sized monstrosities that bought many an unsuspecting Simmers computer to its knees where EA’s game glitches had failed to succeed.

An updated version came out with some improvements to take into account the World Adventures expansion pack, and then work commenced on a third version, with the good news coming at the turn of the year of the updated version’s arrival being imminent.

Few other new worlds developments had been so closely followed on the notoriously fickle EA forum – but then they’d had to put up with so many fickle World creators proclaiming gradiose projects that seldom got to the Beta stage.

One thing Coconut Island version 3 was never short of, and that was people willing to Beta test it to death on their computers to help with the development just for the joy of downloading the new version as soon as possible.

Now you know how EA gets away with doing it with entire Expansion packs so often!

Slowly the bugs were all being taken care of one by one, steady continual progress made towards the perfect product.

But suddenly, and without any warning:

What was going on was a totally unrelated spat on a totally different thread between ProfPlumbob and some of those he’d crossed swords with in the past.

Albeit, his initial remark was innocent enough. But it was clear he’d picked the wrong audience to proffer his views to.

Cue one artistic strop.

With the backlash starting all at once.

There’s a number of issues in the background to this, one being ProfPlumbob being an AwesomeMod groupie that took umbrage with certain people daring to suggest that it wasn’t quite the faultless dog’s sweaty danglies Pescado and his toadies would have everyone believe. Ironically, over at More Awesome Than You there was gloating sneers over ProfPlumbob’s prima donna moment that had effectively cut off his nose, ears and other extremities to spite his face.

SummerSong86 on the EA forum was more generous.

Yes, January 2011 was certainly noticeable for the milk of human kindness being largely soured into yoghurt.

Amongst all those bewailing ProfPlumbob taking his ball home and saying ‘I’m not playing!’, the returning after a long absence JyellieTerror was a lot less patient.

Neither was another more prolific world maker, Rflong7, who’d taken considerable time out to post encouragement, help and advice in the making of the third Coconut Island, only to see it now potentially all being for nothing.

What happened next was bizarre.

Yep, one of the Snooty Sims lot showed up.

Dolldrms1 explained before 24 hours passed what was now going on.

However, this news was greeted with some rather interesting twists to events, as look who showed up.

Mods at Snooty Sims better than the Mods on the EA forum?

Useless and self-serving at the EA moderators all too often are, at least they’re not in the position of Snooty Sims where their moderators change their forum names every few months in the hope that those people that got pissed off and left sick to death of the ‘one rule for Kira’s kiddie clique (ie.”do what the hell you like”) but another for everyone else – especially Sharkloverplayer’ might come back convinced they’re gone.

Over at Snooty Sims, the irony-o-meter was almost fit to explode.

***Ahem!***

Sharkloverplayer’s disgraceful treatment on Snooty Sims (that all time favourite blood pressure raiser)

Kiddies baiting someone looking for help

Current moderator in charge of complaints Erhama (aka Erry, Vantus, Terra, etc, etc)’s anti-semitic remarks.

etc!

And so in a fit of pique ProfPlumbob forsook the company of the hundreds of experience players, game testers and creators within the EA forum that had been helping him for months in favour of putting those final crucial few weeks of testing into the hands of a shower of inexperienced kiddie snark-merchants – who to little surprise proved to be about as much use as a one legged man in an arse-kicking contest, and ironically it was all down to a handful of ‘come overs’ from the EA forum thread he’d flounched from – plus Captain Moryrie incognito – to provide any sort of meaningful, useful feedback.

So much for the prologue, what about the new Beta version that’s now out?

At once you can see this is a far different cry from how it all began.

One problem there’s been with the Coconut Island series is trying to provide just about everything despite the limited space provided, and although ProfPlumbob has taken advantage of the improved basement facilities (quite brilliantly with the new clubs, as you will see), still there’s the problem with trying to cram in far too much into what land there is, in doing so compromising the whole tropical island feel of the world.

Still, let’s have a look at some of the highlights of the new version of Coconut Island 3.

The Underground night club’s petite outside gives the lie to the wonders lying beneath.

Dark and minimalist, but is it a hip-hop club…

…or is is a coven for Satanic Freezer Bunny worshippers?

The Shark Club has a similarly modest entrance befitting the island theme and giving no hint to the beautifully laid out night club below.

The Keep, set in somewhat cramped surroundings is a lot more basic.

One of the nicest surprises was little Coconut Castle, the Art Gallery, although you may be tempted to convert it into something else.

The displays were tastefully put together, and right for the size of venue.

The display of Magical Gnomes as Art was an excellent touch!

There’s the option with a mod to be able to go around the island by subway. Much as we appreciate using this to cut down on time, wouldn’t a few strategically placed teleportation pads do the job just as well, and be a lot less ridiculous than the notion of an urban underground train system below a chain of tropical islands – unless the real owner of Coconut Island is Ernst Stavro Blofeld.

If you do download the Beta – and we recommend you do – you may find yourself wanting to scrub a lot of lots out – especially the completely over-the-top number of houses available – to provide a lot more breathing space for your Simmies. Whilst ProfPlumbob deserves thanks for all his hard work, it’s a moot point whether he ought to have saved some of his stuff created for a spin off two or even three tropical island paradises, rather than trying to cram it all into one.

Still, it’s going to go very nicely with the new Outdoor Stuff Pack (we hope!)

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