The Sims 4 Development Team Drops a Snowy Trailer
Today, the Sims 4 development team dropped the gameplay trailer for Snowy Escape, their newest expansion pack. In doing so, Sims 4 solidified their commitment to diversity in a few, wonderful ways.
Gameplay trailers are immensely significant for players because, after viewing in-game footage, they can differentiate between actual gameplay experience and glossy, render fluff. That is, in animated official trailers, developers can sometimes include gameplay features that are not actually in-game. In-game trailers, however, only show what is actually in game. They are real portrayals of what gamers can expect in a given expansion pack.
October 28th, Simmers feasted their eyes on the stunning, frosted world of Komorebi.
As most players suspected, Komorebi is a Japanese-inspired winter wonderland which exists at the foot of the massive Mt. Komorebi.
Dappled with pink cherry blossom trees, ancient-looking curved bridges, lovely flower strewn boulevards, and scintillating slopes, Komorebi shines with culture both new and old. The Japanese-esque appearance of Komorebi is a deep departure from the currently, largely Euro-centric worlds available in Sims 4. Komorebi is filled with hot springs and temples, threaded with ski-routes and snowboarders, and brimming with both modern and ancient buildings. Players should expect a marriage of old with the new, both paper lanterns and vending machines, tatami mats and modern hibachi stoves.
There are are several neighborhoods in Komorebi, boasting fourteen lots, each offering unique experiences.
Wakaba rests at the foot of Mt. Komorebi. Stuffed to the brim with waterfalls and gardens, genkan entryways and giggling children. Wakaba offers players their first brush with the Festival of Youth and such time-honored traditions as bowing respectfully and removing shoes inside. Players will quickly realize that, while enjoying the new foods Wakaba offers, that they can choose the utensil they'd prefer: forks or chopsticks?
At the Festival of Youth, kids will meet Yamachan, the town mascot. They can also take part in Voidcritter hunts.
NEW SIM DEATH: DEATH BY VENDING MACHINE
When attempting to retrieve a snack from a festival vending machine, the desired item may get stuck, killing the hapless Sim determined to dislodge their chosen snack.
These vending machines will also offer "Simmies," collectables for which a Sim can scour the new world. There are twelve Simmies in all, with ultra-rare golden variations.
Senbamachi: Thousand Leaves Town
A more traditional area surrounded by serene nature, Senbamachi is the place where players will experience hiking, picturesque bridges, cave exploring, electric bugs, and the festival of lights.
Yukimatsu: Vacation spot
Yukimatsu, cloaked in snow, offers what players will most likely salivate over for many weeks to come. Here, players may create rentals for their Sims, and this ability extends to other worlds such as Sulani. This means that Sims will be able to vacation in any world, not just Granite Falls, Batuu, or El Selvadorada.
Yukimatsu offers a stunning variety of snow sports such as: skiing, snowboarding, sledding (for one or two Sims), rock climbing, and cave exploring. Yukimatsu also houses the onsen, a hot springs bath house, to relax in the steaming, therapeutic waters of Komorebi.
Near the onsen, Komorebi citizens hold the Festival of Snow, a celebration filled with fireworks and fantastic sculptures.
NEW WOO-HOO SPOT
Get down and dirty while you get relaxed and squeaky clean in the brand new hot spring locations.
Players will be able to trek either in groups (tours begin at the onsen) or alone to the top of Mt. Komorebi. Much like Jungle Adventure excursions, a player's Sim will need the right skills and pack the right snacks in order to survive this dangerous journey that is often disturbed by the new thunder snowstorms. There are caves along the way available for both exploring and woo-hoo, and as a player's Sim climbs, the weather worsens, increasing the possibility for a new Sim death.
NEW WOOHOO SPOT: ICE CAVES
During their trek up the slopes, any given Sim may find the intriguing ice caves. If conditions are just right, Sims can climb inside to enjoy each other's ahem... body warmth.
NEW SIM DEATH: DEATH BY FALLING
If weather conditions are too icy or a Sim's climbing skill isn't quite up to par, then that Sim runs the risk of falling during their scenic climb, plummeting to a painful death.
The Sims 4 ensured this newest trailer was filled with Sims of many ethnicities. The trailer's narrator is, of course, Asian, but Sims 4 included Sims of other ethnicities too. Players quickly noted the new textured hairstyles and unique CAS items. Players also got their first look at the Lifestyles function, a new addition to Sims gameplay that will have an even bigger impact on Sim behavior than even traits.
"Lifestyles are an expression of a Sim's behaviors and habits over time," the trailer overlay explains. "A Sim can only work towards or against a lifestyle so much in a given day."
That is, a Sim's unique lifestyle is unlocked by their own daily habits. Participating in a lot of extreme snow sports may earn a Sim the "energetic" lifestyle, for example. But if a Sim is already committed to a lifestyle, then that lifestyle can fade if the Sim doesn't continue practicing their way of life. For example, a "sedentary Sim' won't be considered that any more if he suddenly takes up skiing and rock-climbing.
The lifestyles currently available are:
The new expansion also comes with two new aspirations.
The "Extreme Sports Enthusiast" aspiration will motivate Sims to rock climb, to explore the most death-defying reaches of Mt. Komorebi, and to snowboard to their heart's content!
The "sight-seer" aspiration will encourage Sims to eat at every town festival, to meet Yamachan, and to explore the various Komorebi sights.
Sentiments, a fresh feature, deeply affect Sim behavior and moodlets. When Sims share experiences with one another, they form memories that affect how they feel away from that Sim and in that Sim's presence. Did a Sim's friend let them forget their bug spray at home, as suggested by the gameplay trailer? That Sim can now hold a mean grudge against the negligent Sim, gaining angry moodlets in when that Sim is around.
Most heartwarmingly, the narrator of the latest gameplay trailer reveals that she met the female love of her life at Mt. Komorebi! This nod to LGBTQi+ inclusion only solidifies Sims 4's commitment to representing people of all walks of life: all cultures, all sexual orientations, all ethnicities.
Bravo, Sims 4 devs. Bravo.
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