When I first started playing the game I was irritated with the way you had to play the game, as dictated by the goals set. As I got past the first 15 minutes, I realised this wasnt the case at all. After you have completed the first few goals you are pretty much left to your own devices and goals come less frequently, allowing you time to explore. A few things I must mention though
I had difficultly finding the rat cave, after I'd bought it. Make sure you explore all of downstairs properly, walk up to everything along the walls :)
It takes patience to learn how to catch goons and aliens but with some practise this is just challenging fun, rather than frustrating.
Make sure you keep the sound on at least a little bit, or you might miss your phone ringing in the corner.
Talk to everyone and get them to be your best friend, you will find out their secrets, everyone has one :)
Play the casino game lots and you will have enough money to complete the goals comfortably, also ensure you paint lots of pictures once you have built the gallery, if its good enough, you could earn $1000's of simoleons.
All in all I am really thrilled with the game, even once its completed you can still carry on with the game, ensuring you collect all of your lisence plates, skill points and find out everyones secrets. I give it 4 *'s