Seems simple enough. Look at the box for Sims 3, and particularly the system requirements. Now double or triple them, and start looking to see what kind of computers you can find that meet with these inflated specs for the game.
And for my money, I would avoid the following brands like the plague: HP, Compaq, Acer, Gateway, and eMachines. Which leaves you with Apple, Dell, IBM/Lenovo, Sony, and Toshiba (laptops only) for name brands, and then of course you can build your own.
I recommend avoiding those brands because really only two companies make all of them anymore. HP owns Compaq, and Acer now owns Gateway and eMachines. Both of these companies, IMO, are real bottom of the barrel quality wise. People who buy these systems often run into problems that can ultimately be traced back to shoddy quality hardware and/or poorly written drivers. It's just an added bonus to me that these companies also use exploitative asian labor that is basically just shy of slave labor by western standards. That's a big part of how they keep prices so low.
I also recommend avoiding sub-$500 systems regardless of brand. Those are just a nightmare waiting to happen for the reasons outlined above. Shoddy quality hardware, and no corner left uncut, all in an effort to get that rock bottom price. You WILL pay for it, just over time in frustration, not up front in cash. If there's some temporary rebate or sale going on that puts a system below $500, that's different. You'd just be wise to not even consider any that are normally priced at $500 or less. It's not a hard and fast rule, but there is a lot of truth to the statement, "You get what you pay for" when it comes to any kind of electronics.
I want a gaming computer, but i want to make sure that i actually need a gaming computer. The only PC game i play is Sims, i don't play any hardcore games like halo, and my husband has been banned from using any computers that belong to me.
Basically i want a computer that i can play SIMS 3 on smoothly with no problems.
What are your recommendations. I don't want to spend over $1000, but if i have to i will.