Since its launch in 2000, The Sims has gained a lot of popularity and following. It is one of the best-selling video games of all time. With almost 36 million players worldwide, the game developers don’t plan to stop developing anytime soon. Since most of the user base is kids, it is necessary to ensure that the content is appropriate for them and that the Sims 4 rating is ideal. As parents, it is normal to have concerns about what your kids are doing.
Hence, here is an outline of what you should know and can do to keep your kids safe and your worries at bay.
Table of Contents
A brief overview of The Sims
Released in 2000, ELECTRONIC Arts is the creator and developed by Maxis. Over the years, various versions have been launched in the series to make things more interesting for players.
The Sims gives you the power to create and control your own character. Create a life you always wished to experience. You can build homes, find love, start families and do day-to-day tasks such as eating, bathing, etc. This single-player game is one of the best life-simulation games out there. With the latest installment launched in 2014, The Sims 4 has taken the market by storm. The game comes with 11 expansion packs and 10 game packs to enhance your gaming experience.
Moreover, the game also had add-ons known as Stuff Packs. Rather than adding new gameplay functions, this pack offers unique items and builds for your Sim. Currently, there are 18 stuff packs and 7 kits available. However, these are available only at a specific price, requiring you to purchase them separately.
Since the gameplay depends entirely on the user, the playstyle can be anything. This game supports creativity and enhances it as well. Some players prefer following a storyline, others prefer building, whereas others may also like just doing whatever they wish. Players can tailor the game to suit anyone.
Currently, players can only play the game on a PC, PS4 and Xbox. Speculations of it arriving on Nintendo Switch are still there but highly unlikely to happen.
What is the age rating?
The Sims 4 has an age rating of 12+. This means the PEGI rating is 12+.
A PEGI rating of 12+ means that the game shows the violence of a graphic nature toward fantasy characters and non-realistic violence toward human-like characters. It is okay if sexual posturing and innuendo are present in the game; however, it must be censored, and any foul language used in the game must be mild.
The Sims rated 12+ plus means kids can play it, however, under the guidance of their parents if they are too young.
What’s so great about The Sims 4?
The best-selling and longest-running base game must be popular due to some reasons. The Sims 4 draws millions of players from around the world. Here are some reasons why the game is so popular:
- Easy to play – The game is easy to pick up and doesn’t require any prior technical skills. Just download and start, as simple as that.
- Customization and Simulation – Since Sims 4 is a simulation game, players can customize it in any way they want. Players can customize their sims, homes, careers, etc. To add to that, players can add game modifications. Download it from creators online and add it to the game. These include new features and cheat codes, and some may also be there to fix in-game bugs.
- Sim Language – The Sims have their language, and it is known as ‘Simlish’/ The language is so popular that singers have recreated some songs in this language.
- Youtube Community – The Youtube Community of Sims 4 is massive. Influencers and players live stream and upload recordings of their gameplay. These include streams of them covering certain new content, building homes and other architecture or simply just playing with their Sim. These videos receive thousands of views.
- Twitch Community – The game has 4.8 million followers on Twitch. The channel allows players to live stream their gameplay. Players can also learn about new updates, releases or modifications in the game and get help in certain aspects on Twitch.
- Custom Challenges – To add a layer of fun to this game, players can make it more complex and add challenges for them to complete. These custom challenges make the game very interesting for the players. There are many types of challenges that players can customize and enjoy.
- Regular updates – The developers release updates for the game very regularly. Designers, influencers and custom content creators are a massive part of the updates players receive. The regular updates make the Sims 4 free of bugs and keep the gameplay interesting.
- Escapism – The Sims 4 is so unique. It acts as a world in which players can escape. A world without any worries and troubles. A virtual world filled with imagination and fantasy—a world where you are in power.
What To Watch Out For
Although the Sims 4 age rating is 12+, there are still certain elements you should watch out for:
- Nudity and Sexual Content – Being a life-simulator, it is evident that sex would be there. Players can make sims have sex, although it should be censored. It happens under the covers or in places where the Player cannot see. Censor is also added when the Sims use the bathroom or are in their undergarments.
- Violence – In Sims 4, violence is limited to silly humour. However, players can die by electrocution or fire. Hence, if you do not want your kid to experience such tragedies, this may be unsuitable for your child.
- In-App Purchasing – Certain elements in The Sims 4 are paid. If your credit card details are present on your Origin account, it shall be straightforward for the kids to buy whatever they seem fit without any purchase confirmation details. Hence, this is one thing to look out for when kids play.
- Custom Content and Mod – Though mods and CCs are here to enhance your gameplay, certain Mods or CCs can be unsuitable for kids. Certain Mods could be about drugs, kidnapping, nudity or gory violence. It is also possible that if the kid downloads something and turns out to be a virus, it might put your digital safety at risk.
To sum it up and give parents more ideas about the Sims 4 rating, here are 10 things parents should know about Sims 4.
- Genre: What is Sims 4? The game is about managing the life of your characters, which are virtual people known as ‘Sims’. The game world can be described as “realistic-ish”, as Sims do everything to get jobs, earn money, pay bills, run errands and do daily chores. Players can create their own Sim and make them live however they want. The Sims 4 has added more emotional traits to the Sim to make things more realistic.
- Developer: The game creator was Electronic Arts and was developed by Maxis.
- Format: Currently, the Sims 4 is available only on PC, PS4 and Xbox One.
- Price: To play the game, you need to pay a fee. The Standard Edition of The Sims 4 costs $59.99/ £49.99. The Digital Deluxe Edition costs £59.99/$69.99, with additional digital content and other features.
- Length: The Sims 4 game is never-ending. You can keep playing for years together. Sims can die in the game. Natural and unnatural causes are both possible. Although, you can move on and play with another existing Spring or create a new Sim and start over again.
- UK and Europe – PEGI rates The Sims 4 as 12+. That means it is fit for those ages 12 or older. This comes with warnings for Sex and Violence to a minor extent. The Games Rating Authority explains the reason for a 12+ rating by pointing out that the violence in the games is mostly slapstick. It does not cause any significant harm or injury. Dring Create-a-Sim, it is possible to play around and enlarge the breasts of their characters and dress the Sim in revealing lingerie.
- US– ESRB Rating for The Sims 4 is T for Teen. It has content descriptors for Crude Humor, Violence, Sexual Themes, and other add ons in the game. The description is further detailed on the sexual content of the game, explaining some of the options players have when it comes to starting intimate Sim relations. Although, most of the sexual content in the game has been censored by pixels or is under the bed covers.
- Common Sense Media– The Common Sense Media gives The Sims 4 rating of 13+, stating there are a lot of sexual themes in the game. One of the concerns for a 13+ age rating was the ease with which players can download and share custom content and add features to the game.
- Themes– The Sims 4 is a mimicry of real life. It has the potential to mimic events from the Player’s real life. However, the developers have kept some things light. For example, babies cannot die, deaths are cartoony, and it is possible to turn off ageing. Hence, your Sim will not die of natural causes.
- Why do people play The Sims 4 – Although the rating age of The Sims 4 is 12+ and there are specific warnings, the fact that The Sims reflects real life is the primary source of enjoyment in the game. Players for the game for various reasons. Some spend time on Create-a-Sim to make characters look like their loved ones or celebrities. Some love to play it as it allows you to build the perfect houses. For a few, this is a way of escaping the natural world and entering a perfect one they created for themselves. The game gives the players freedom to make their fun and let their creativity enhance and flow.
Parental Review for The Sims 4
As a parent, who better to believe than other fellow parents. Many parents leave parental reviews for the games, which can be a great reference source. Common Sense Media has collected parental reviews, and most of them state that the game’s age rating for the game would be 10+.
Certain parents themselves have been players of The Sims for the longest time and hence know the game like the back of their hand. The majority of the parents approve of the game. They state that their kids have been enjoying the game. Although they are aware that sex and violence are a part of the game, they are okay with it since they are mild and most sexual scenarios are censored.
Certain parents say that The Sims 4 is a fantastic game that will help boost creativity in the kids. Building houses, interiors etc., helps increase their creativity and gives them a look at the real world. The kids get to know how the real world is through the game playfully. Parents state the game is easy to play, has educational value and can serve as a role model for the kids.
It is an excellent game for all ages. Kids will love the game, and it will teach them certain advantages and disadvantages of the real world. However, parents do need to take care of certain aspects of the game. Here are some tips to keep children safe and let them enjoy the game.
Tips to Help children play safely
- Create a Child EA Account- The child account limits access to certain features. The Sims 4 rating of 12+ should be kept in mind. The child will not be able to access online multiplayer purchases, social media connections, etc.
- Enable Parental Controls: For kids playing it on Xbox or Playstation, the account has settings to control in-game purchases and keep your bank details safe.
- Please encourage them to take regular breaks: Since many kids get addicted to games quickly, it is encouraged that you make sure your kid takes breaks from playing the game. Set the alarm or use platform control to manage the amount of time spent on gaming.
Rachel Kaser is an English major who has an unparalleled ability to transform words into poetry! He is also a big e-sports enthusiast and spends his evenings honing his gaming skills. He combines his passions for writing and gaming to provide us with the perfect amalgamated piece of literary work.