One of the most appealing things about The Sims series is the freedom to play your own way. It’s the ultimate sandbox life simulation, allowing you to live out whatever virtual life you want. For some people, that’s creating lots and lots of exciting drama. For others, it’s going back to another period in time and imagining themselves in another lifetime. It’s pretty difficult to find historical gameplay in the base game but there are quite a few packs that offer worlds, Build/Buy items, or CAS pieces that can help us imagine our Sims living in a time period from before.
Get Together comes with a huge, beautiful world called Windenburg based on a few different European countries. It’s old cobblestone city square, crumbling ruins, and chalet gardens make for an impressive historical urban backdrop. It also features plenty of Tudor-style Build/Buy wall coverings, flooring, and objects to create the old world builds of your dreams. There’s also a lovely old-fashioned gown and a suit of armour in CAS for your Sims to wear.
If you’re looking to go back to medieval England, Cottage Living is perfect for that. The picturesque rural town of Henford-on-Bagley is a great backdrop for an older way of life and it offers loads of Build/Buy content reminiscent of medieval times. It boasts a wide array of humble cottagecore CAS pieces. For gameplay, the addition of chickens, cows, and llamas which all provide food or crafting materials really enhance this medieval way of life. So does the Simple Living challenge this expansion comes with, requiring your Sims to have the ingredients for a meal on-hand in order to cook it.
The gorgeous world of Sulani is a relaxing escape from the rat race even in modern times but this scenic tropical location is also fantastic for historical gameplay thanks to all of its preserved natural beauty. It comes with plenty of thatch and woven textures in the Build/Buy catalogue as well as kava bowls, pit BBQs, and outrigger canoes which can be enjoyed off-the-grid by your Sims. Sulani’s also an ideal location for fishing and swimming.
We wouldn’t really recommend the Build/Buy catalogue, CAS catalogue, or the world of Evergreen Harbour from Eco Lifestyle for historical play but Eco Lifestyle has a lot of gameplay that makes it perfect for your historical Sims. Sims can raise a variety of insects in insect farms and harvest them for food and fuel. They can craft candles using wax and dyes. Grow soybeans to turn into candle wax or harvest beeswax from beehives if you own the Seasons expansion. Build community spaces where Sims can come together to craft, garden, or sell their homemade wares. And if your Sims are excellent stewards of the land, they can turn their eco footprint green which will offer benefits and positive moodlets to all the Sims living in the neighbourhood. It pairs really nicely with packs like Cottage Living.
You might not think an expansion about the glitz and glamour of celebrity life has anything to do with the ancient past but don’t be so quick to scoff at this suggestion! Get Famous comes with an Acting career which means this expansion has a huge variety of set pieces and costumes from many different time periods! Medieval castles, pirate ships, prehistoric set pieces, apocalyptic stuff, Victorian England, French Renaissance, even futuristic sci-fi set pieces if you want to go in the complete opposite direction! There is so much historical content to repurpose and work with in this expansion.
Realm of Magic
If you’re looking for a more whimsical, art-nouveau, fantasy take on history, look no further than Realm of Magic! With some delightfully rustic CAS pieces and plenty of ornate furnishings, Realm of Magic is a great pack for players looking for historical gameplay that’s a little more on the fantastical side. Of course, the addition of actual spellcasters and magic brings a lot to the table for this style of gameplay, too. All my elves in my medieval fantasy save are spellcasters, for example.
While Selvadorada can’t be lived in full-time, making it difficult to incorporate it into historical saves, Jungle Adventure still comes with plenty of rustic and ancient-looking pieces to decorate your historical worlds. From crumbling ruins to ancient, weathered stone, to dense foliage to unearthed treasures and more, Jungle Adventure’s décor can really add a lot to take your historical builds to the next level. I’m a big fan of the wooden market table. It’s the only market table in the game that blends in well with historical saves so I use it all the time in my historical builds.
Outdoor Retreat is probably one of the best packs for rustic and historical gameplay! Not only does it come with so much furniture in stone and weathered wood textures but it offers plenty of activities for Sims to enjoy off-the-grid, like horseshoes, campfires, stargazing, and cloudgazing. The Herbalism skill can be great for playing a healer from ye olden days, too. Have them gather herbs and berries to brew up tinctures and remedies to treat all kinds of common ailments in Sims. It’s really a great pack that I use a lot in my medieval builds.
If the Victorian period is more your style, you’ll want to pick up Vampires. This pack comes with a gloomy Victorian world called Forgotten Hollow and it really is like it’s been forgotten by the modern world. Cars don’t drive around here and the cobblestone streets are eerily devoid of activity. The Build/Buy catalogue is filled with ornate Victorian furnishings with a gothic feel to them. The CAS catalogue harkens back to the Victorian period as well with lacy gowns and button-up vests and trousers.
Laundry Day Stuff
Living way back when in history means there were a lot more chores. Like washing laundry by hand. If you want your Sims to toil and struggle just a little bit more to live out that rustic dream of yours, Laundry Day Stuff comes with a wash tub and a clothesline for Sims to do their laundry by hand completely off-the-grid. I love this little touch of realism in my medieval save and always make sure to put a wash tub and clothesline on every residential lot.
Maybe the distant past isn’t really your thing. Maybe you’re more interested in decades. In that case, you might like Paranormal Stuff, which has a Build/Buy catalogue reminiscent of the early 1900s up to the 1920s. The perfect crossover between the Victorian period and the modern age, Paranormal Stuff is full of odd and quirky antiques to clutter up your vintage home. Floral patterned wallpaper, ornate wooden floor designs, and curved edges give this stuff pack a distinctly vintage feel.
Nifty Knitting Stuff
Apart from the rocking chair itself that this pack comes with, we can’t really say the Build/Buy catalogue is good for historical saves. However, knitting very much suits an older way of life and provides both a fun and practical activity for Sims in your historical worlds to enjoy. I love to put a rocking chair and knitting basket in my medieval homes so my Sims can earn a living from their craft or provide their family with warm, cozy things to wear.
Vintage Glamour Stuff
Couldn’t get enough of the 1920s with Paranormal Stuff? Vintage Glamour Stuff’s got your back! Unlike Paranormal Stuff which focuses on the 1900s up to the 1920s, Vintage Glamour Stuff dives right into the midst of the Roaring Twenties’ art nouveau, avantgarde style. Clean lines, geometric shapes, and lots of glitz and shine are at the core of this pack. It’s a fun, colourful pack that’s perfect for your wealthy Sims living in the Jazz Age.
Bowling Night Stuff
Care to fast-forward a few decades? Sure, no problem! You can do that with Bowling Night Stuff. Harken back to a mid-century retro style with this stuff pack stuffed with plenty of funky patterns, rounded furniture pieces, and bright, neon colours! Seriously, your eyes will be assaulted with neon everything. Of course, we can’t forget about the actual bowling that this pack comes with as well. Hit the bowling lanes in your finest retro attire and relive the days of swing dancing and drive-in theatres… without the swing dancing or drive-in theatres. But there’s bowling!