With the announcement of Sims 4 Get to Work comes a plethora of speculation. How will the active careers work with loading screens? How in-depths will the careers go? Will running a business be as deep as in the past? Will it be able to compete with Sims 2 Open for Business and Sims 3 Ambitions? We’ll be taking a look at these past two expansions to refresh our memory before we compare them to what we know of Get to Work so far.
This comparative look will be split into two separate articles. Part 1 will look at Get to Work in comparison with Open for Business. Part 2 will be looking at Ambitions.
Running a business in Sims 2 Open for Business was so in-depth, it was essentially a video game within a video game. You oversaw your store, employees, customers, inventory, sales figures, reviews, customer loyalty, talents, and perks. Here’s a rundown of the most essential parts of running a business in Sims 2 Open for Business and how it relates to what we know so far in Get to Work.
The variety of stores you could own in Open for Business was astounding. Anything from a bakery to a car dealership was possible. You could even run a business that didn’t deal with direct sales thanks to the Electrono-Ticket Machine. With this on your business lot, any visiting sim would buy a ticket and would be charged depending how long they remained at your business. With this, your sim could make money running a gym, movie theater, country club, anything you could imagine.
We know Sims 4 Get to Work will allow us to run anything from a bakery to an appliance store to an art gallery. Anything our sims can craft as well as anything in the buy catalogue is available when making a business. The question is whether or not the ticket machine will be making a comeback allowing us to run non-sales businesses.
Another grey area surrounding Get to Work businesses is the ability to run a home business. In OFB you could either run a business at a community lot or on your home lot. There were some differences between the two, the main one being matter of convenience as your sim didn’t have to leave their lot to work. I asked SimGuruGraham on Twitter if home businesses would be possible, but he’s not allowed to say anything else than what’s been revealed currently.
Talent badges in Sims 2 were like skills as they expressed a sims experience in a given field, but instead of having ten levels like a normal skill they had four. These were no badge, bronze, silver, and gold. These were added because in Sims 2 there were a standard ten skills a sim could build without the ability for the developers to add more.
Nowadays we’re given new skills consistently in sims games, so sales, restocking, etc. could be skills on their own. But it’s already been revealed that the only skills being added in Get to Work are photography and baking. This means there are several possibilities for employees and their job experience.
• Every sim works the same without any type of improving over time
• Sales, register, stocking, etc. are hidden skills that improve over time
• Talent badges will be making a return and haven’t been revealed yet
We know we’ll be able to hire employees in Get to Work, but we have to wonder how closely it’ll follow the Open for Business model. In OFB employees each had different skills and talent badges which affected how well they worked, or didn’t. Each was also given a pay point that you could raise or lower as you saw fit. You could underpay an employee and watch as they burned out quickly and quit or overpay someone to make them work for you forever.
An employee’s mood was also important as they needed breaks every so often otherwise they’d become too uncomfortable to perform. Not giving breaks resulted in employees slacking off, taking breaks on their own, or quitting in frustration with the lack of concern for their well-being.
Each employee could be assigned one of many different tasks, and could be shuffled around as needed. These ranged from cashier, stock person, sales person, or the one making the store’s inventory. Once an employee built up enough talent badges, they could then be promoted to a manager. Having a store manager meant you didn’t need to visit the store as often to continue making big profits, you could just call the manager up and ask how things are going.
Customers were able to shop on their own, but it was important to help them along in the process. In order to secure sales or make shoppers buy efficiently, a sales person was needed. There were several different sales interactions available depending on the level of talent badge the sim had. You could play it safe with a basic sell, or risk offending the customer with a hard sell.
Over time if customers enjoyed their time at your business they would develop customer loyalty stars. As you collected loyalty stars, your business improved and more sims would visit each day. Each time your business leveled up you also received a business perk point that you could use on several different “perk sections.” These offered all kinds of bonuses from new sales interactions to large sums of money to improve your business.
One type of customer you needed to be on the lookout for were reviewers. These sims would occasionally take out a pad and pen and scratch down a few notes before continuing their shopping. A good review meant booming business while a bad review could essentially halt all sales for a while.
As it is now, we don’t know anything about the potential customers that will frequent out businesses. We also don’t know if there will be customer loyalty, business perks, or if our businesses will increase over time. Business reviewers are also not announced thus far.
As Sims 4 Get to Work has only recently been announced, it’s understandable that much isn’t known about how the business system will work. I only hope it will be as in-depth as it was in Open for Business.