A Witness from Dirbine is a short story published to The Sims 3 Story Exchange on June 11th, 2009 as a promotional for Ciem 2. It is a midquel to Ciem 2, taking place relatively during the time frame of Ciem 2 but involving characters never mentioned explicitly in that story. The direct sequel to Witness is Pursuit of the Facts, as Witness was cut short due to circumstances in the writer's life.
Veronica Stalick is a Dirbine resident who flees town when it is attacked by the Mik-Non terrorist faction from China. Her high school friend Chuck Corsi meets her in a chat room, and they discuss the things that happened to them while they were enduring the assault on the city. Both of them become particularly interested in the fact that Veronica witnessed an unknown accomplice helping Ciem battle Captain Aardwulf by running a car into him. The two of them speculate wildly about the relationship between Ciem and the mysterious woman in a baseball cap.
Briefly, they argue about whether Navyrope is a hero or a terrorist, as they've heard contradicting stories. The two speculate the possibility that Ciem and the mysterious girl are related. Veronica claims that they could even be lesbians, but Chuck argues that there is no evidence for that. Ironically, his first guess (that they were sisters) is the correct answer; but he defaults to belief in his second guess of them being cousins. As Veronica leaves the chat room, the two of them realize that they are thankful to be alive. Still, they are haunted by unanswered questions concerning the events that threatened to tear their community apart.
A Witness from Dirbine and its immediate sequel Pursuit of the Facts were developed through the exact same process. The free story creation tool on The Sims 3 Story Exchange provided pre-defined music and images. The images and music were then simply combined with original story text to create the impression of DSHW content that ties in with the universe of Ciem 2.
Few useful clips existed in the pre-defined bins, so the characters are often depicted with stock footage being repeated numerous times. Veronica and Chuck begin in an online chat room having discovered each other to be in there. All that stock was from the "People at Computers" bin, and the sequel's footage was all from the "People Talking" bin.
Not true DSHWEdit
This story is denoted as "DSHW 0.2" because it is a slight improvement over the faux-DSHW used to create stories at The Sims 2 Story Exchange (denoted as "DSHW 0.1.") The Sims 1 Story Exchange, which has never been used by Dozerfleet, is considered "DSHW 0.05," since the original Sims game's Family Album system barely resembles true DSHW.
No story on any of EA's Sims-themed Story Exchange websites is considered valid DSHW for the following reasons:
- While all three versions (0.05, 0.1, and 0.2) have the basic functionality for storytelling and carry the 3.0 standard of value switching as a replacement for actual HTML navigation, none of the Exchanges have DVD-like menus.
- Stories on the Exchanges do not possess the option for multiple chapter navigation within a story. Instead, chapters must be published as separate stories.
- The absence of a DVD-like Main Menu and lack of DVD-like menus for sub-features to a story defeat the purpose of the DSHW 1.0 standard.
- Cursors cannot be customized.
- Resolutions beyond 600 x 450 are not yet realized.
- No credits pages
- No automation options, though page value transition effects are possible and cross-browser-compatible.
- Use of Flash for technology other than video embedding/streaming
The soundtrack for the story is the song "Illumination," made available to Sims Storytellers on the Sims 3 Exchange for accompaniment with stories published to the site.