EA loves to drop surprises for users of its online distribution service Origin. Every so often, gamers can be treated to a free copy of a major title through ‘On the House’ specials — albeit for a limited time only. Previously, EA had released Plants vs. Zombies and Battlefield 3 through this service, and users can currently pick up addictive puzzler Peggle.
However, EA has announced that another title is available for free through Origin — and not through the aforementioned ‘On the House’ service. Right now, gamers can pick up The Sims 2, with a huge amount of additional content, for absolutely nothing. It’s bound to placate any fans of the series who are disappointed over EA dropping support for The Sims 2 last week.
So, what’s the catch? There is none, unless you count adding a product code. All The Sims fans have to do is install Origin and set up an Origin account. Then, select ‘Redeem Product Code’ from the ‘Games’ tab in the Origin menu and enter the code I-LOVE-THE-SIMS. Gamers can also redeem the code online at the Origin website by going to the ‘Redeem Product’ Code page, logging in to their account, and entering the code in the ‘Product Code’ field. You’ll have to be quick, though. The Sims 2 is only available for free until 10AM and July 31.
EA did have a warning for those who already have another version of The Sims 2 installed. If you have a previous copy of the Maxis sim title, but want the Ultimate Collection offered here instead, EA suggests backing up your The Sims 2 save files first. Then, uninstall your version of the game and follow the directions above as normal.
Seems like a no-brainer. The Sims 2 may be nearly a decade old, but it’s seen by many as the real turning point in the series, with a lot of the game’s framework still visible in other The Sims titles. It’s worth bearing in mind that it’s not just the core game you’re getting here, either. All eight of the game’s expansion packs are also included in the free version, so your Sims will be able to have pets and go to university.
It’s another nice gesture from EA, even if the aim of all these free downloads is to get more people using Origin. It’s also a nice stop-gap for those waiting for the release of The Sims 4 on September 2. Grab your copy now — after all, it may well be your last chance to play The Sims with swimming pools. That feature, along with the toddler age span, is being left out of The Sims 4.
The Sims 2 is available for free download from Origin until July 31 at 10AM PDT.