E3 2014: The Sims 4 (Impressions)

by: Travis -

As a longtime fan of The Sims series I walked away from the E3 presentation of The Sims 4 with confidence that as one of the developers described it, "the best Sims game ever made." The key game features showcased were the new Create a Sim mode, emotion-rich Sims, revamped building tools, and gallery mode for sharing game content.

The completely-redesigned Create a Sim mode is a tactile experience versus the old model of various sliders. The developers described the new mode as mimicking the process of sculpting with clay. As demonstrated during the presentation, one audience member had their appearance modeled in-game and it was a near perfect match. From selecting the Sim's outfit and walking style to their aspirations and traits, players have nearly-unlimited customization options.

In addition to the improved Create a Sim mode, Sims themselves have been completely redesigned on the inside in regards to their emotions. Sims now are affected by their emotions along with basic survival needs that fans will already be familiar with from past games. As showcased in the presentation, severe circumstances with emotions can even result in the death of Sims such as literally dying from laughter.

The revamped building mode was showcased with its new tools such as moving complete structures to adding fully furnished room templates into houses. No longer are players bound by invisible limits when constructing houses as nearly every aspect of the process can be tweaked. Many improvements have also been added to aid in repeat tasks such as placing windows on houses.

Lastly, the new gallery mode was previewed in which players will be able to upload content ranging from their Sims to houses for others to download directly in-game. This process before required browsing a website and then going through various steps until it finally appeared in-game. Now players can browse through a variety of content and download the content in seconds, which in turn is as easy to upload and share content as well.

While the presentation was brief and left many questions unanswered, I'm still eager to start creating Sims and houses when The Sims 4 launches on September 2 for Windows and Mac.

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