This paper presents the first detailed simulation approach to evaluate the proposed imaging method called 'magnetic particle imaging' with respect to resolution and sensitivity. The simulated scanner is large enough to accept human bodies. Together with the choice of field strength and noise the setup is representative for clinical applications. Good resolution, fast image acquisition and high sensitivity are demonstrated for various tracer concentrations, acquisition times, tracer properties and fields of view. Scaling laws for the simple prediction of image quality under the variation of these parameters are derived.