Some Fans Reject EA’s Explanation On Cutting Swimming Pools and Toddlers From ‘The Sims 4’

When fans of EA's upcoming The Sims game — The Sims 4 — heard that swimming pools and toddlers would not be in the game at launch (or possibly ever), they were upset. A recent post from EA's Rachel Franklin on The Sims 4 blog hoped to explain why these things were excluded and calm down any backlash from The Sims community. But it seems like Franklin's rather lengthy explanation has done little to nothing to calm down the community.

In her post, Franklin says that EA excluded these two things (and probably some other stuff that hasn't been revealed yet) to focus on improving the AI from Sims and to add new emotion animations so that players could tell by looking at their Sims how they were feeling.

The fact is, we owe you a clearer explanation for why pools and toddlers will not be in The Sims 4 at launch, so here goes. It begins with new technology and systems that we built for this new base game for The Sims – a new AI system, new animation system, new audio positioning tools, new locomotion logic, new routing intelligence and much more are all entirely new in this game. The vision for The Sims 4 is a new experience that brings your Sims to life in deeper and uniquely personal ways – through emotions, personality traits, behaviors and interactions. To do that, our technology base needed a major upgrade.

So the bottom line is that when we sat down and looked at everything we wanted to do for this game, all the new tech we wanted to build into it, the fact was that there would be trade-offs, and these would disappoint some of our fans. Hard pill to swallow, believe me, but delivering on the vision set out for The Sims 4 required focus. Focus on revolutionizing the Sims themselves. So, rather than include toddlers, we chose to go deeper on the features that make Sims come alive: meaningful and often amusing emotions; more believable motion and interactions; more tools in Create A Sim, and more realistic (and sometimes weird!) Sim behavior. Instead of pools, we chose to develop key new features in Build Mode: direct manipulation, building a house room-by-room and being able to exchange your custom rooms easily, to make the immediate environment even more relatable and interactive for your Sim.

But some fans are roundly rejecting this explanation from EA; some are saying that the game will be a PR nightmare for EA on the scale of SimCity if they don't add these items. Others are a bit more dramatic if you sift through all the comments.

If taken at face value, the comments seem to indicate that fans want pools and toddlers added into the game at launch and anything other than acquiescence on EA's part is unacceptable.

I prefer Andrew Eisen's explanation (who sent this story in to us) on why EA removed toddlers and swimming pools from the game:

"EA: Because we know you sick bastards would just drown them!"

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  1. 0
    Monte says:

    I think its not the specific features themselves, but its more about the fact that they are REMOVING features that have been in the game for what seems like no reason at all. Sequels are supposed to build on the previous games, not take features away.

    Or heck there's another possibility, maybe they would give them back later on, but as DLC. Now its sounding more like the case of Forza 4 where the lastest edition of the game gave players LESS cars than the previous so they could sell you the rest as DLC.

    EA is a PR nightmare. Their constant BS over the years has left very little faith left in the gamers. They are down to the point where they pick up on ANY little detail.

  2. 0
    Longjocks says:

    Sim City having to be online only. That's a pretty big deal. Having tiny cities in the next iteration of a series where they got bigger and bigger each time. I can understand the irritation. But I have to wonder about a game where the lack of a pool and/or toddlers is such a big ticket item that it's worthy of mention… backlash… news. So I take it The Sims 3's greatest contribution to the series was the ability for your characters to wear brown shoes or something? I hear it was a big step up (arf arf) from The Sims 2.

  3. 0
    brotherspartacus says:

    I don't understand this. "We had to choose between advanced AI and swimming pools" sounds like the punchline to a joke. Just because it is in the subset "entertainment" does not mean you are no longer in the tech industry, EA, and your customers (not me, not for a long time) are knowledgeable enough to know when you're just making things up.

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