It’s no secret that The Sims 4 had a bit of a rocky launch back in 2014. Players were rightfully upset about many glaring omissions that they felt were essential to the core experience of The Sims, like toddlers, ghosts, basements, pools, and many other big features that just weren’t in the game at launch.
With all the controversy surrounding what wasn’t in the game, it was easy to overlook nearly two dozen brand new, never-before-seen careers, skills, activities, and collections that launched with the base game.
Now that many of our most-wanted features have been patched into the game for free (and better than ever), let’s take a look back and appreciate some of The Sims 4‘s coolest new features that made it stand out from its predecessors.
The Tech Guru career is tied to the brand new Programming and Video Gaming skills. For the first time ever in Sims history, your Sims can make a career out of playing their favourite video games (and coding them, too)! The E-Sports Gamer and Start Up Entrepreneur branches let your Sim choose between two focuses; will they strive for Internet gaming fame or get involved in the booming tech industry?
While your Sims could be an astronaut if they reached the top of the Military career track in The Sims 3, blasting off into the stars was never its own career until now. Work your way up the space traveling ranks until you get to choose between two branches; Space Ranger or Interstellar Smuggler. Will your Sim devote themselves to protecting the galaxy from evil or will they become an intergalactic pirate?
Ever dreamed of being the next James Bond? Well now your Sims can be in The Sims 4! Or maybe they prefer to be the villain of your epic spy story. The Diamond Agent and Villain branches of the Secret Agent career let your Sims choose between fighting for good or allowing the temptations of corruption to turn them down a path of villainy.
Sure, you might have had a Sim with a good sense of humour in the past, but were they master comedians? Not before The Sims 4, they weren’t! The comedy skill is a brand new addition to The Sims franchise. It goes hand-in-hand with the Comedian career branch of the Entertainer career. Building the Comedy skill allows your Sim to tell better and more elaborate jokes at the microphone and write their own comedy routines!
Gourmet Cooking is a brand new skill that allows your Sim to truly refine their culinary talents. Unsurprisingly, it compliments the Culinary career. Raise your Sim’s Cooking skill to level 5 to unlock the Gourmet Cooking skill and start serving up some of the most exquisite dishes that are typically served in five-star restaurants by award-winning chefs. Bon appetit, mes amis!
Some Sims just want to watch the world burn. The Mischief skill is for them. This skill compliments the Criminal career. Build this skill by performing Mischief interactions on other Sims. Building the Mischief skill allows your Sim to perform more Mischief interactions, sabotage objects, and even purchase a voodoo doll to mess around with the emotions of other Sims.
With the all-new Programming skill, your Sims can make a living doing all kinds of activities related to the computer. While it’s tied to the Tech Guru career, your Sims can easily make a living off this skill at home by doing freelance programming work, hacking corporations, and creating video games and viruses. Building the Video Gaming skill along with the Programming skill will allow your Sims to mod all their favourite games.
For a full guide to the Programming skill, check out our article, A Day in the Life of a Programmer!
Rocket Science is of course tied to the Astronaut career but your Sims don’t need to be an astronaut to explore space. Purchase the Steampunk Flyamajig in Buy Mode and start building your very own rocket in your backyard! Building and upgrading your homemade rocket will build the Rocket Science skill, allowing your Sim to traverse the stars safely and build and upgrade faster. Lots of collectibles can only be found in space, so what are you waiting for? Shoot for the moon!
Ever wanted to play video games for a living? Now you can in The Sims 4! The Video Gaming skill is tied to the Tech Guru career but your Sims can make a comfortable living at home from this skill. Build the Video Gaming skill by, you guessed it, playing video games. Building this skill will allow your Sims to play more games and enter pro gaming tournaments to win prize money.
Space exploration is an all new addition to the franchise. It’s tied to the Rocket Science skill. If you purchase a rocket pad, your Sims can build their own functional rocket ship and blast off into space for a wide variety of exciting choose-your-own-adventure style expeditions. Your Sims will often bring back collectibles and other goodies from their intergalactic travels. Make sure your rocket has a few upgrades or you might find yourself crash landing back on earth in a pile of rubble!
The Handiness skill is not new to The Sims, but the woodworking table is. While Sims could create sculptures in previous games, the woodworking aspect of The Sims 4 is in a league all its own. Not only can your Sims carve a variety of decorative sculptures to sell or display around their home, but they can also build their own furniture. From mirrors to garden planters to tables, chairs, wall hangings, and even a bathtub and toilet, your Sims can be truly self-sufficient and build themselves their own house.
For a full guide on woodworking, check out our article, The Sims 4 Tutorial: All About Woodworking!
Frogs are a new collectible in The Sims 4, but collecting them is only a small part of the fun. The dedicated frog enthusiast can breed their frogs to create new types of frogs for their collection. Simply have two frogs in your Sim’s inventory, click on one of them and select Breed Frog With… to breed your very own frogs! The frog breeding system is very in-depth. You’ll have to carefully select frogs with the right combinations of genes to get those rare breeds.
Frogs are a brand new collection in the franchise. There are a total of 25 frogs to collect. All frogs can be caught out in the world but it’s easier to get the rare ones by carefully selecting and breeding your frogs with particular gene combinations to get the one you want.
Space rocks can only be found by exploring space in a rocket ship, so start building and upgrading to hone your Rocket Science skill! Space rocks can be tricky to find, but luckily, there are only four of them, so it’s not an impossible task.
There are a total of 10 aliens to find out in space! Blast off in your rocket ship and explore as much as you can to bring home both live and preserved aliens to decorate your home with. Or put them in the front yard and creep out the neighbours with them. It’s your world. Your Sims are just living in it.
Elements can be found by sending rocks and crystals to the Geo Society. They’ll extract the elements and send them back to you in the mail. There are 15 elements to collect. You can even display them in their own nifty periodic chart found in Buy Mode!
Fossils can be dug out of rocks around the world. There are 15 fossils to collect in all. Click on a limestone deposit in your Sim’s inventory to extract the fossil inside, but beware! There’s always a chance you could break the fossil, instead.
Microscope prints make a gorgeous addition to any Sim’s home. Obtain them by using the microscope. There are 12 microscope prints to collect. Your Sim has a much better chance of finding rare microscope prints if they examine slides taken from plant, fossil, or crystal samples.
MySims Trophies are the perfect collectible for any geek or child Sim. There are 20 of them and they can be found inside capsules dug up from rocks around the world. Using a treasure map to dig up a rock guarantees a capsule with a MySims Trophy inside!
If your Sim is more of a homebody, they can get a pen pal on the computer and write letters to them to receive postcards back in the mail. These postcards come from all over the Sim world and can be proudly displayed on their very own corkboard found in Buy Mode. There are 14 postcards to collect in all.
Just like Microscope Prints, the Space Prints provide some beautiful art to display in your Sim’s home. There are 15 space prints to collect and you can find them by using the observatory.
With so much to learn, explore, and collect in The Sims 4 base game, it’s no wonder The Sims 4 is enjoying such a long, prosperous lifespan.
What’s your favourite feature in The Sims 4 base game? Let us know in the comments!