Thinking about playing god with virtual Sims again? Well, you still have the Sims 4. But if you are craving the “next generation” of drowning people in the pool, the Sims 5 is what you should be dreaming about. However, the Sims 5 release date might not be as close as you expect.
The developers have revealed that The Sims 5 is currently being developed under the name of Project Rene and playtesting is already underway for the title. Despite that, the game is still in early development. The developers state that this will be the “new future” for Sims and will “reimagine The Sims you know and love with new ways to play.”
For an immediate Sims fix, the Sims 4 is still offering good expansion packs, game packs, kits, and even mods to keep you occupied. While still a great game, it’s been almost 7 years since its release, and the game is showing its age, especially when compared to other modern games. Even though the game is going free to play soon, new content for it will continue flowing.
The Sims 5 – Release Date
EA was adamant about not releasing a sequel unless Sims 4 achieved great commercial success. Thankfully for the fans, the game is raking in millions each year, $462 million in the last year, to be exact.
They have also seen a lot of support from the developers, they released The Sims 4 Cottage Living recently, and it earned a lot of praise from the fans. They also updated the game with over 1000 new item variations, which is a lot of free stuff, especially for an EA game.
We don’t have any concrete release date for The Sims 5. Maxis, the developer behind the long-running series has just confirmed its existence during the Behind The Sims Summit live stream under the codename Project Rene.
Lindsay Pearson, the VP of franchise creative, said the game would be “built on a foundation of charming Sims, powerful tools, and meaningful stories.” Here is the full Behind The Sims Summit Live Stream:
“Over the next couple of years, we’ll continue sharing updates with all of you on Project Rene. We’ll share in-progress work, explorations, sneak-peeks, behind-the-scenes content as well as start to open up Early Access to Project Rene software to small groups over time,”
– Lindsay Pearson, VP of Creative Franchise Creative
This sounds like the game is still in early development.
“(This) marks the start of our journey over the next few years…, This is super early for us, and we’ve never shared information about our games years before launch to the world.”
Pearson further added
The developers are looking to open up the game to certain community members and are actively seeking their input. It is always a good sign when developers are honest and invites the community to contribute to the development. Whether The Sims 5 will have an early access release or have standard alpha and beta access programs remains to be seen.
With opportunities for the community to see how the game is shaping up, the Sims 5 could see a lot of multiplayer-focused features. Unfortunately, a release date for either the early access programs or the game isn’t announced yet.
History of Speculation
Previously according to a veteran industry insider and reporter Jeff Grubb, the game might be announced sooner than we thought. The presentation for the Sims 4 going free to play may also see an announcement about Sims 5.
“At this thing next month, they will almost certainly announce it then. The announcement is coming soon, I’ve heard it’s likely coming, and that all lines up with what they’re saying.”
Jeff Grubb on Jordan Middler’s Game Mess Morning Podcast
EA held an event on October 18 to announce Sims 4 going free to play. Jeff reckons new content for Sims 4 will continue to be made despite the announcement of Sims 5.
However, in 2020, EA CEO Andrew Wilson hinted about a multiplayer-focused Sims game. During a conference call with the investors, he stated, “As Maxis continues to think about The Sims for a new generation – across platforms in a cloud-enabled world – you should imagine that, while we will always stay true to our inspiration, escape, creation, and self-improvement motivations, that this notion of social interactions and competition“
He further added, “like the kind of things that were actually present in The Sims Online many, many years ago – that they will start to become part of the ongoing Sims experience in the years to come.”
A fan site Sims Community spotted this info back in 2020. He further went on to say, “We are very excited. This is a game that really doesn’t have any competition in its category for delivering and fulfilling these motivations for players, and we think is a tremendous growth opportunity for us for many, many years to come.”
Just to recap, Andrew Wilson is aiming to make the next Sims game a bit more connected with social aspects. We highly doubt that they would go the MMO route, but if they are going to focus on social and online experiences, we at least hope we can invite our friends to our home.
Given that it’s already been 2 years since Andrew Wilson talked with the investors, it is fair to say that the game won’t be released anytime soon. A point to be noted here is that typically The Sims game has a large gap between each iteration.
The Sims 3 came out in 2009, and The Sims 4 was released in 2014. EA continued to release expansions for The Sims 3 until October 2013, and yes, The Sims 4 was already announced. The fact that EA is still releasing expansions for The Sims 4 doesn’t mean that they aren’t actively working on the next game.
Taking a calculated guess, we estimate The Sims 5 won’t be released until after 2023.
The Sims 5 – What Platforms Will See the Release
Going by the previous track record, The Sims 5 will most probably release first on PC. Then eventually make its way to PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X. It’s a tradition at this point that the new Sims game will get the PC version first, and it’s highly likely EA won’t deviate from this schedule.
People who game on Macs will probably see The Sims 5 on their Apple devices. Considering that The Sims 4 got a Mac release, we have no reason to doubt EA won’t release their popular game on Apple platforms.
We were very hopeful to see The Sims 4 make its way to Nintendo Switch. However, that never happened. So we have very little hope of seeing the next major release come to Nintendo’s handheld. Of course, we would love to be proven wrong.
Does EA Even Want to Release a New Sims Game?
The Sims 4 has seen a total of 12 “game packs”. The most recent game pack is High School themed, released on July 28, 2022. The DLC machine isn’t stopping yet. These game packs or expansions are all paid DLC and not free updates. Some of them are quite essential to the overall gameplay and increase the quality of life as well.
If you were to purchase all the game packs, it would set you back around $439.89 USD. This number doesn’t include the price of the base game, which is usually around $39.99 USD when not on sale.
Most Sims 4 fans pick and choose what expansions they like the best and buy those. Many choose to purchase everything to have a complete experience.
In short, Sims 4 is making a lot of money for EA and at the end of the day, that’s what matters to a company. EA is another business, and its goal is to maximize profits. While they are not re-releasing the game like a certain other company (cough…Bethesda…cough), they are certainly milking the game like Rockstar did with GTA V Online.
I can’t believe I’m saying this but the expansion model of EA is still better than Rockster and their predatory Shark Cards. At least you are getting a whole expansion instead of a single flying car you can use to grieve other players.
We can understand as a business, Sims 4 is printing money for the company. They’d want to continue doing that until the well runs dry. They are essentially getting the same amount of money without having to make a whole new game. Their development team can be downsized and a skeleton crew can maintain the new content, essentially saving more money for the company.
On the other hand, EA just lost their cash cow, the FIFA partnership following FIFA 23. They won’t stop making football games (soccer for the USA fans), but they can’t use FIFA in them. Perhaps losing out on the partnership may make them focus on a franchise they own completely. No licensing fees or partnership deals are to be made when it comes to the Sims IP.
The question remains, does EA have any definite plans for the Sims 5 release date? No, they are going to wait until Sims 4 loses all steam and then release the new installment.
The Sims 5 – What is Our Wishlist
Optional Social Elements
We understand that EA is moving in another direction, and it is commendable that they are trying something new with the social aspects. But a lot of Sims fans love the game because they can play it at their own pace. Traditionally, when EA goes the “multiplayer and social” route, they try to entice people to play online.
Sure, some features, like the Autolog in Need for Speed games, do enhance the experience, but mandatory online isn’t going to fly with a lot of Sims fans. We are hoping that EA would at least cater to solo players, so there won’t be any always-online requirements.
Back To the Open World
The Sims 3 had an open world, your Sim could go outside and see other Sims going about their daily routine. It was a seamless experience as well, there were no loading screens, and you were free to explore the neighborhood. You were free to visit shops and just discover the surroundings. The level of immersion that it brought was incredible.
The Sims 4, for some strange reason, abandoned all that freedom and instead opted to bring in restrictions. Clicking on a menu to travel to another location is not as great as simply walking there.
Loading screens yank you out of the game and are huge billboards that say, “You are playing a videogame” this completely ruins any immersion. Just stepping outside your house boundary greets you with a loading screen which further discourages you to explore.
With the power of next-generation consoles, we are hoping that EA would bring back the sense of immersion and belonging. The adequately fast SSDs on both PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X should be enough to eliminate any loading screens. Combine the seamless open world with the diversity of The Sims 4, and we have a recipe for success.
Better Building Options
While The Sims 4 has a respectable selection of building options, there were several that were missing. The biggest one, in my opinion, was the lack of The Sims 3 color wheel. The Sims 5 could use better building options or at least have building-focused updates.
Enhanced building options are always welcomed and allow players to make beautiful creations without strange limitations restricting their builds.
Speaking of, we should also demand better neighborhood creation tools. Back in the day, you were able to not only build your own house but choose the lay of the land as well. Selecting the terrain style was just the beginning, you were able to add environmental touches like trees in The Sims 2.
The Sims 4, however, restricted everything. Not only the lot sizes were predetermined, but the whole world was also locked, severely limiting player options. The Sims 5 should have some better neighborhood creation tools, so we can tailor our neighborhoods exactly to our tastes. We recommend Buildings Have Feelings if you are craving a building management Sim.
This one is a given because each iteration of the Sims franchise brought in several graphical enhancements. But they haven’t seen a giant leap in graphical fidelity for quite some time. For example, take the graphics from Battlefield Series, you can see the games improve with each game. The jump from Battlefield 3 to 4 was stunning.
I’m not saying that Maxis should change their in-house engine, which by the way, doesn’t have an official name. I’m simply suggesting that they could do so much better if they overhauled it to include modern graphical techniques. Sure, they can simply use another more capable engine, but I think that would ruin the overall iconic look.
Better Overall Package
Did you know fans had to wait almost 2 years for pools to be added to The Sims 4? Of course, you do, we wanted our Sims to swim in the pool, and maybe, remove the ladder while they were in there.
The wait for toddlers to be added in The Sims 4 was also the same. We are hoping that EA would not omit important elements from the game at launch. Maybe they can add in the Pets from the get-go too. Speaking of, To The Rescue is a great dog shelter management game.
Sure, they can always add them back in, but it ruins the overall package at launch. Updates and expansions are to build upon previously released content, not patch in cut elements.
The Sims 5 is a bit far from release. Thankfully, The Sims 4 is in a better place these days, and thanks to the usual discounts, you can grab the game and its numerous expansions that have a very affordable price tag.
Sure, bagging them all would be expensive, so it is always advisable to pick and choose. Hopefully, we’ll hear more about The Sims 5 release date in a year or so.