A petition urging EA to reinstate toddlers and swimming pools into The Sims 4 has passed 16,000 signatures.
“Toddlers have been a vital aspect to The Sims series because it is a lifestate that is crucial to the flow of the game,” it reads. “Without it, newborns will age straight up into children which will impair the possibility for story telling - a huge thing for the Simming community.
“We also want pools. Pools have been in every single basegame and to not have them would be ridiculous at this point.”
EA has now responded by effectively saying that the work required to develop the game’s new systems and architecture means that trade-offs had to be made elsewhere.
“We owe you a clearer explanation for why pools and toddlers will not be in The Sims 4 at launch,” The Sims 4 executive producer Rachel Franklin said.
“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, behaviours 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 behaviour.
“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.”
Franklin also outlined some of the evolutions that she expects fans of the series to notice.
“The Sims 4 is a completely new game, and it feels different to play,” she insisted. “There’s so much more depth in The Sims 4. For the first time, the Sims act like real people. They can interact with groups, not just one-to-one. A standing Sim can talk with a sitting Sim. They can multi-task (eating, watching TV and talking? Sounds like my typical evening!). You can even put a hat on any hairstyle or pair boots with any pants… well, maybe that’s just me that cares about that.”