The Sims 4 is a quirky take on life, but developer Maxis is cautious about what it wants to make a game of.
Like previous titles in the series, players tailor tiny people to their liking, tweaking their look, personality and more, before living out their lives. Sims can slouch around the house, get jobs and even get married and have kids, if players choose. The Sims franchise is considered progressive by many for its inclusion of same-sex relationships, and that’s an assessment the developer agrees with.
Speaking with Polygon at a recent event, associate producer Graham Nardone said that Maxis strives to find a balance between being fun and being respectful. Finding this line is a big part of why the series hasn’t included non-binary characters — people with gender identities that don’t fit with the binary of male and female — so far.
“You don’t want to trivialize somebody’s life by making it a gameplay feature,” Nardone told Polygon. “You have to have the right respect for people and who they are, and I think that’s one of the most core things that’s important about The Sims — being respectful about people’s lives.”