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The new chapter in the Sims story
This title has been a cultural phenomenon since 2000, when the first installment was released. The game crossed demographics, and everyone became a fan of the series. Now it’s on its fourth outing; how has the series held up?
From baby steps to retirement
The greatest micro simulation game is back. Sims 4 has big shoes to fill. Is this sequel up to the task?
The premise is the same: create your avatar, build your dream house, fall in love, watch your children grow - choose your life. As ever, there’s a lot that you can buy for your Sims, from stove tops to guitars and everything in between. You can share creations of your with other players online, and the detail work that’s gone into some of the objects in this game is incredible.
But you could be forgiven for thinking that there should be more in Sims 4 than there were in any of the previous games. Sadly, this is not the case.
There’s no swimming. You can’t make pools and you can’t toss your Sims in, remove the ladders, and wait for them to doggy-paddle themselves into an early grave. That was one of the most iconic things about the franchise up until now and it’s a curious thing to remove. The whole point of the game is to have complete control over the life of the Sim, so why take any of that control away from the player?
The avatars are now much more competent than they were in the last game. You don’t have to babysit them all the time, and while that might be good for some, it still takes away the player’s control.
While the game looks good and runs pretty well, it doesn’t really make up for the issues here. The loading screens take forever when you first start the game. This is a legendary trait of any Maxis game, but this time it’s really something else. If that weren’t enough, the most critical visual component in the game is broken: the camera. How can this be? Did the developers not playtest the game? Do they not realize the camera is broken?
It’s frustrating, because the team and Maxis / EA could have had a smash-hit here. But modern corporate practices are probably responsible for the underwhelming game that is The Sims 4.
Where can you run this program?
You can run this game on Mac OS and Windows computers.
Is there a better alternative?
Yes; in fact, The Sims 3 can offer you a better experience. If you’re looking for other Maxis sim titles, try any of the SimCity games.
While The Sims 4 does little to improve upon the groundwork laid by its predecessors, it’s still a fun game at its heart. The customization and in-game object shopping could take you hours alone, but it feels like this game is being purposefully left empty. Considering that the franchise has always banked on the expansion packs to turn an extra profit, that could be the reason it feels so bare.
Should you download it?
Yes. Despite its flaws, Sims 4 could be fun, and it might be more enjoyable if you haven’t played any of the previous games.
- Good graphics
- Attention to detail
- Online sharing
- Less content than previous entries
- Camera issues
- Long loading screens
The Sims 4for Mac
When we upgraded all our Macs to macOS Sierra, my daughter was upset because Sims 3 broke. After much scouring of the internet, I found the solution and tweeted about it:
My daughter's fave game, Sims 3, was getting stuck on the loading screen in Sierra. This Info.plist edit fixed it: https://t.co/HzjgWnB7cr
— Rob Griffiths (@rgriff) December 14, 2016
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It dawned on me, though, that if that forum post ever vanishes, I'll be in trouble with future new Macs and/or reinstalls, so I thought I'd document it here, too. Read no further unless you (or a family member) play Sims 3 and want to get it working in macOS Sierra. And really, try the linked forum post first; this is just a backup plan.
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The following is quoted verbatim as posted by user 'Ashpeef' on the Sims forums. I organized it as a numbered list and formatted some text, but left the content unchanged.
It's probably the Launcher that crashes at the time it hands over control to the game itself. You could try starting the game directly, bypassing the Launcher. Here's how (also a rather long story, I'm afraid...) :lol:
- Within your Applications folder, locate and open the folder The Sims 3
- Find the application The Sims 3.app, then right click (or hold the Control key and click if you can't right click) to get the context menu.
- In that menu, select Show Package Contents. A new window opens with only one item: the folder Contents
- Within that folder there is a file info.plist (usually the second item)
- Right or Control click that file for the context menu and there select Open With
- You'll probably have to scroll down almost to the bottom of the list to find TextEdit.app. Use that program to open the file.
- Now the real thing: locate the line <key>CedegaGameName</key> about 2/3rds down. Note: not the one just above it with CedegaGameDir!
- The next line should end ...Bin/S3Launcher.exe</string>
- Change S3Launcher.exe to TS3W.exe and save the file.
The next time you start the game, it should begin straight away with the EA and Maxis logos.
If you later on want to start with the Launcher again, just do the same thing, this time changing TS3W.exe back into S3Launcher.exe
To make this easier to do in the future, I made an alias of the info.plist file in our Documents folder. And as I'm not a masochist, I used BBEdit, not TextEdit, to edit the file.