We hope we’re wrong but it’s giving us My Wedding Stories vibes…
We need to talk about The Sims 4 Horse Ranch, guys. Namely, today’s developer livestream that was supposed to show off all the gameplay this expansion pack has to offer but did pretty much everything but that. However, we’re not going to be criticizing what you might think. We could debate forever over whether this expansion pack has enough content in it to call itself an expansion pack. For the most part, that’s a subjective argument depending on what kind of content you deem valuable or not.
We’re not going to talk about that. What we are going to talk about is all the red flags this livestream raised for us that gives us a sinking suspicion that The Sims 4 Horse Ranch is not finished and not fit to be released. This is probably the expansion pack we have been looking forward to the most so we really, desperately hope that we’re wrong. But having survived the My Wedding Stories fiasco in the past, it’s impossible not to notice a repeating pattern here.
Table of Contents
Why We Think The Sims 4 Horse Ranch is Unfinished
Again, we really hope we’re flat out wrong in our suspicions. We want The Sims 4 Horse Ranch to be amazing SO bad. We will happily eat our own words if all of this turns out to be false but as of right now, everything we saw today reminds us of the disastrous My Wedding Stories launch.
A Prerecorded Livestream
While prerecording livestreams is not uncommon for big events that EA puts on, such as Behind The Sims, it’s pretty much unheard of for a gameplay livestream. The whole point of tuning into a gameplay livestream is so players can see how the pack behaves in real-time. Prerecording this kind of stream is immediately suspicious and tells us they were scared to show off any live footage of the pack.
If you’ll remember, the livestream for My Wedding Stories was pretty disastrous. The devs only showed off one event and literally everything went wrong with it. Perhaps EA also remembers this and prerecorded another unfinished pack stream to cover up any embarrassing glitches like that.
Still Putting on “Finishing Touches”
Right away at the beginning of The Sims 4 Horse Ranch stream, SimGuruJoann tells players that they’re still putting “finishing touches” on the pack and that some of what we see in the stream may be different from what we see when we get the game. This would be perfectly fine and expected if we were being shown an early development demo, but we are less than one week away from launch. At this point, the expansion should be pretty much finished. Nothing should look or behave differently for us than what we see in a livestream this late in the game.
That tells us that they’re scrambling to finish an unfinished pack at the last minute. This is exactly what happened with My Wedding Stories and the players suffered for it in the end.
Where’s the Gameplay?!
Okay, okay, we said we’re not going to talk about the lack of gameplay. And we’re not! But what we are going to point out is all the gameplay that actually is in The Sims 4 Horse Ranch that we didn’t get to see. Why not?!
Even though the Equestrian Centre is clearly a rabbithole, we were still looking forward to seeing the mechanics of how the competitions worked. Aren’t the equestrian competitions one of the biggest features of this pack? There’s a whole aspiration dedicated to them! Instead, we were told that it was too late at night to show them off. What? Since when has that stopped the developers from showing off important pack features before? They often utilize dev cheats to fast forward time and trigger specific gameplay for the sake of the stream. They used the same excuse for why we couldn’t see the functionality of the general store and clothing store.
They gave no reason whatsoever for why they couldn’t host a social event during The Sims 4 Horse Ranch stream either, other than they had to keep moving with the stream. Again, not a very good excuse for a stream that was already less than half the length of a typical expansion stream. Something just isn’t adding up there.
This is just yet another example of how The Sims 4 Horse Ranch launch is following in the ill-fated footsteps of the My Wedding Stories launch. That game pack came with seven different social events which were the main focus of that pack, yet we were only shown one (which didn’t work).
Not Looking Good…
Overall, it’s not looking good for The Sims 4 Horse Ranch. This is probably one situation where we would love to be wrong about our suspicions but we’ve been covering The Sims 4 for a long time. Long enough to notice alarming patterns when we see them.
Still, we do maintain a feeble hope that this expansion pack will be great. It deserves to be great. We want it to be great and we do hope it will be… at launch. Not a month later after numerous emergency patches, like My Wedding Stories.