For quite some time, The Sims has been a massively popular franchise; with launches across PCs, consoles, mobile and even Facebook, the series has let players run wild and create or destroy virtual lives with a few deft clicks of a mouse. But the latest iteration of the game, The Sims 4 heavily divided opinion, worrying some that it would be the final Sims game in the series. While many liked the new emotions system that EA introduced (that could even kill Sims through laughter) some reviews didn't feel that the new game was worth the full price.
Gamers were also disgruntled by the fact that EA and developer Maxis removed longstanding features such as toddlers, swimming pools and even family trees. However, the team behind the game has now announced that a plethora of extra features will be coming to The Sims 4 for free.
The announcement came during a Twitch livestream hosted by Sims producer Graham Nardone alongside designer Daniel Hiatt during which they revealed the update lineup for the next few months. First up in the video (which you can see below) was a variety of seasonal content as per the upcoming Halloween festivities.
To get everyone in the spirit of the trick-or-treating holiday, a brand new radio station fittingly called "The Spooky Station" will be blasting out some new tunes, meanwhile players' Sims will be able to boogie down in their flashy new Star Wars threads. There are even "some scary gnomes" now featured in the game to really give Sims 4 players a fright.
The free update, which is now available, also introduced ghosts, a feature missing when The Sims 4 first launched. According to Sims 4 executive producer Rachel Franklin who spoke to Kotaku, ghosts will now have a "wider range of abilities than the ones in previous installments". This includes appropriate mood lighting (red for angry, pink for flirty etc.), the ability to date living or dead Sims, have jobs, build aspirations and even gain specific traits and powers depending on the way they died.
The traits of these ghosts are potentially something for players to worry about. If a Sim died from one of the three deadly emotions (anger, embarrassment and hysteria) then the spectral version of them will radiate that emotion so in certain situations it could even be possible for other Sims to die from that too.
This will be a welcome addition to those who were missing ghosts when The Sims 4 launched but the most exciting announcement is that pools will be coming to the game in the November update. There's no date on the update yet but we do know that it will be released for free, putting fan fears that it would be released as paid-for DLC to bed.
Toddlers were also missing from the base game with the team explaining that they'd been left out so that they could focus on other features. Now that pools have been implemented this might give some fans hope that toddlers will eventually make it into The Sims 4 too, even if that has yet to be announced.
The final big update that we'll get this year, in December, will bring careers although it wasn't specified which ones. We also have news on the Mac version of The Sims 4 as EA has said that they know Mac owners "are looking to hear more. We are working on it." Even if that is incredibly brief, the updates are at least a step (or a swim) in the right direction.