For the past 17 years, The Sims has reigned as one of the more innovative endeavors in video game history. Taking the simulator genre to the next level, the franchise has offered one of the most creative playgrounds imaginable. Players can customize their Sims’ appearance, personalities, and even life goals. They can make themselves, friends, or fictional characters. The Sims has always been a free for all in terms of what the player can come up with.
Unlike many games that offer a wide variety of freedom, players aren’t necessarily pushed in one direction or another. Of course, there is the general goal of keeping your Sim alive and having them fulfill their life goals, but these are ultimately secondary and act as more of a jumping off point. Players can pamper their Sims just as easily as they can torment them with little to stop them outside of the occasional warning of consequence.
While a good chunk of fun in The Sims comes from what the player is able to come up with themselves, that’s not to say the series isn’t consistently well designed or filled with secret goodies the developers have hidden far out of reach. Infinite money cheat codes, monsters to befriend, and hidden lots to find and refurbish are only some of the secrets the developers have tucked away. Some secrets are as simple as just playing the game and inevitably stumbling upon them, while others require a bit more devious intent: both in game and out.
15 You Can Drain Your Sims’ Sanity
In many ways, The Sims is the ultimate test of human morality. You are effectively given the role of God, creating and playing with countless lives all for your own amusement. Their happiness and sadness is dependent entirely on you. While cruelty is expected, Reddit user vsanna took it to an all new level when they decided to test the sanity of their sim. “I made a guy who was a compulsive neatfreak. Put him in a really surreal little house with a wedding buffet and a hamster or something, deleted the door. Eventually he went insane from lack of cleanliness and depression over his little rodent friend dying, and starved to death once the banquet rotted. I put the resulting urn in the room. I then repeated an identical scenario several times, always keeping the urns in the room. Eventually the tenth iteration of this guy is up all night, every night, terrified of a parade of ghosts of himself.”
With a bit of reincarnation and cruel carpentry, you, too, can make your sim suffer as his past lives come back to torment him.
14 Any House Can Be a Haunted House With A Bit Of Creativity
Now that it’s been established that you can fill your house with as many ghosts as you’d like, what’s stopping you from stripping away the doors and subjecting your Sims to some good, old fashioned horror?
First thing’s first, you’re going to want to find a suitably sized home. Try to spring for something with a basement and a second floor at least. Once you’ve got your abode ready, decorate to your heart’s content with some antique furniture and odd portraits. Then get your Sims.
You’re going to need to get your hands a bit dirty since you can’t just up and make ghosts, so make sure you’re comfortable with a bit of malice. Choose however you’d like to off your Sims and, once you’re ready, bring in the live ones. Watch as ghosts of the Sims you’ve killed torment and haunt the living as they desperately try to escape a doorless home. They might die of fright, but there’s no such thing as a haunted house that's too full.
13 You Don’t Need To Take Out The Trash In The Sims 1
It goes without saying that a life simulator is going to force you do actually participate in, well, life. You need to shower, you’re going to have to get a job, and, yes, you need to take out the trash. It’s not a fun chore and it’s very doubtful that very many people actively enjoying the process of tossing out a bag of garbage but, like most things in The Sims, a bit of creativity can get you a long way.
If you notice in the shop menu, you can buy and sell furniture. Given that The Sims 1 was Maxis’ first outing with the series, things weren’t as balanced as it could have been and there were some oversights in prices. One rather helpful oversight was the cost of the trash can. It sells for the exact same price it can be bought for, meaning that a trash can full of garbage can be sold and replaced with a brand new, clean bin. Is it devious? Yes. Should you probably have just thrown out your trash regardless? Yeah, but where’s the fun in that?
12 You Can Import Your Own Music Into The Game
While each installment in The Sims does a rather good job at adding in some music and re-recording real songs into the made up Simlish, a little more variety wouldn’t hurt. Thankfully, it’s possible to transfer your own music files into The Sims, ensuring you never need to listen to that Portugal. The Man Sim rendition ever again, as catchy as it is.
It’s a rather simple process that doesn’t take much time or brainpower. First, make sure all your files are .mp3, otherwise they won’t work. Next up, find wherever your folder for The Sims is on your computer and wade through its folders until you find the Custom Music folder.
Once there, you can now transfer your music into folders that correspond with each radio station. Dump them all into one or spread them how you please, but either way they’ll be radio ready if you managed to do everything right.
11 The Sims Can Be Multiplayer On A Console
Traditionally, The Sims has always been considered an immersive single player experience that tests the limitations of the player’s creativity and while it was immensely popular on PC, it had yet to dominate the console market.
Naturally, consoles couldn’t handle The Sims the way PCs could, so there had to be some incentive to pick the game up on consoles. Introduced in The Sims Bustin’ Out, multiplayer became the staple that differentiated The Sims on PC from The Sims on console.
Thanks to the brilliance of split screen, players can either work together to build a life together or cause as much chaos as they possibly can at the expense of each other. It’s not a trend that continued after The Sims 2 on console, but it’s one that perhaps should have, considering the unique possibilities it brought to the table.
10 You Can Have A “Painting Goblin”
Now I know what you’re thinking, “what in the world is a ‘painting goblin?’” Well, I’ll tell you. The year was 2013 and an anonymous 4chan user decided to share his secret on how to efficiently keep his Sim family happy and financially stable.
The first step is to create your “goblin.” It doesn’t matter what they look like, but what does matter is their traits. They need to like to be alone, they need to like art, and they need to hate the outdoors. Once they’ve been created, the next step is to build an inescapable basement with all the livable essentials.
After settling in, the painting goblin will spend their days mindlessly painting, only stopping to sleep, eat, or use the bathroom. Over time, the goblin will get better at painting meaning they’ll sell for a higher price, making sure the Sim family will live in prosperity without ever realizing the dark benefactor keeping them afloat.
9 Open Your Own Little Shop Of Horrors
Originally a 1960s B-Movie that turned into an 80s hit musical and then film, Little Shop of Horrors has gotten plenty of love from The Sims over the years. Perhaps the most on the nose reference to the movie comes from the Laganaphyllis simnovorii, which is also known as The Cow Plant.
Based off the killer plant, Audrey II, from Little Shop of Horrors, The Cow Plant feeds off of any kind of meat whatsoever, including Sim meat. The first time a Cow Plant eats a Sim, in The Sims 4 at least, The Cow Plant will spit them out and the Sim will “feel like an emotionless shell.” The next time The Cow Plant eats that same Sim, the Sim will die and turn into a ghost.
It’s morbid already, but it doesn’t end there. The Cow Plant can also lure Sims into its mouth with cake. The Sim will then be awestruck by the cake and consumed by The Cow Plant. Now imagine what you could do with an entire basement of them.
8 Laughter Can And Will Kill You
They say that laughter is the best medicine, but even the most efficient medication can come back to haunt you when abused. Telling a joke and general jovial merriment are two of the best ways at improving a Sim’s mood and getting them to develop a friendship with another Sim, but it’s also possible to murder your Sim by making them laugh too much.
If a Sim’s playful and happiness moodlets reach a combined 15 or higher, they can enter a state of hysteria where they’ll keep laughing until they inevitably suffocate and die. Anything that increased the happy and playful moodlets can work in forcing a Sim to hysteria. Sims who are comedians by nature can very easily fall into hysteria meaning you either have to keep a very watchful eye on your funnier Sims,or accept their deaths and allow them to enjoy their short lived days in this world.
7 Corrupting The Sims 2 Lets You Find Out The Grim Reaper’s Favorite Band
Developers have been hiding away Easter Eggs in code and impossible to reach places in video games since the dawn of man and The Sims is no exception. When using the debugging cheat in The Sims 2, players can interact with the world quite literally however they please. It takes the omnipotence of the player to a whole new level as it takes away just about every limitation they might have otherwise.
One of the main things players can do is check bios of characters you otherwise couldn’t see and The Grim Reaper is one of those people Checking his bio will reveal that he not only enjoys taking long walks, but is also a fan of the band Styx. Breaking the game to check what The Grim Reaper likes will ultimately corrupt your file and effectively ruin all the work you’ve put into your Sims but, hey, at least you have confirmation that The Grim Reaper is into Dennis DeYoung.
6 You Never Have To Age If You Play The Right Version Of The Sims
When developing a game for a console as opposed to PC, it’s very important to keep in mind that certain things won’t work on a console game. At least in the early 2000s, they didn’t. Given the specs they had to work with, there was just no way that Maxis was going to be able to properly implement The Sims’ aging system, so they had to go with another angle: eternal youth.
Aging can simply be turned off regularly on the PC version of The Sims, but there’s something special about knowing that, no matter what, you will never age. The Sims 2’s console release in particular is rather upfront about this with its opening cinematic showing off all the wonderful forever adult things you can do.
Most importantly, it removes a rather stressful part of Sim management since you no longer need to worry about how many in-game hours you have left before exercise will start to kill them.
5 The Sims 4 Doesn’t Want You To Abuse Medication
Medicine. What is it good for? Quite a lot actually and The Sims is going to make sure you’re only using it when necessary. In the first expansion for The Sims 4, Get to Work, three new careers were added with their own perks to go along with them. Detectives could investigate crime scenes, scientists could invent to their heart’s content, and doctors could perform their medical duties.
With the addition of doctors came an emphasis on medication. At first glance it may not seem too exciting and, truth be told, it wouldn’t be if it weren’t for one little message. If a Sim takes medication while perfectly fine, a message will come up referencing the infamous “This is your brain on drugs” PSA.
The notification will say just that, taking a jab at the player for making their Sim rely on medicine for no good reason. It’s a very small moment that most players will probably miss, but it’s nice nonetheless that Maxis found it worthy enough to be added with the expansion.
4 Sylvan Glade Will Reward Your Persistence
Sylvan Glade is arguably the most beautiful neighborhood in The Sims 4. Covered in gorgeous flowers and trees, the Glade features some of the most pleasing aesthetics to ever grace the series, but it’s also home to one of the most off putting Easter Eggs in the entire franchise.
Unlocking the Sylvan Glade really isn’t too difficult. Simply send any Sim to the Crick Cabana lot found in Willow Creek and have them search for a unique looking tree. Once found, just keep making your Sim view the tree and eventually they’ll climb in and be transported to Sylvan Glade.
Once there, feel free to let your sim walk around and take in the dream-like neighborhood because they’re in for a legitimate fright. Amongst the serene pond and beautiful pink trees is a glowing pair of bright red eyes hiding in the upper rightmost bushes in the lot. If your Sim gets too close then the eyes will quickly become visible before disappearing with a creepy laugh.
3 You Can Become A Super Villain
Added as a full fledged career in The Sims 4, players could now push their Sims down the path of a secret agent. Starting at a rather respectable 17 simoleons an hour, Sims will be sent out to do some undercover espionage and general intern nonsense. As your Sim puts in their hours and proves themselves worthy of the title “secret agent,” they can get promoted six times until they’re prompted to branch out into two possible categories: Diamond Agent and Villain.
Obviously, villain is the correct answer here. Not only will your sim get paid exponentially more money for their vile endeavors than playing for the good guys. At the tenth tier, your Sim will even get a freeze ray to solidify their descent into madness. If for whatever reason the life of a super villain isn’t working out for your Sim, they can get promoted to a triple agent and work for the good guys again, but any trust they once had with the agency will have been completely tarnished. Good pay though.
2 You Can Befriend Bigfoot
To find Bigfoot is to also find bliss, for he is perhaps the purest being to ever come out of The Sims. The first step is finding the secret map that leads to his house. This can be found by treasure hunting, going on hikes, or searching for pirate ships. If you do any of these enough, you’ll find the map. Once you’ve got your hands on it, you can then visit Bigfoot’s house via the map.
Interacting with Bigfoot is about the same as any other sim, with the exception that he is very friendly. Bigfoot will give you hugs and generally get along with anyone and everyone. After spending enough time with Bigfoot, you can ask him to move into your lot and he’ll become playable.
If playing as Bigfoot isn’t your thing, then you can take comfort in knowing you managed to snag his as a housemate. His hygiene may be poor and he might eat all your food, but he’ll be the most friendly sim you’ll meet all game.
1 You Can Spot Nessie
For years, people have claimed to have seen The Loch Ness Monster, but no real proof of his existence has ever been documented. Is he real? A hoax? The Sims opts for the former, hiding the mystical Scottish beast in broad daylight.
When visiting Downtown, Vacation Island, or simply staying idle on the neighborhood screen in The Sims 1, players can, on a rare occasion, spot The Loch Ness Monster going about her business, wading through the water. She’ll only appear for a few seconds, however making you question whether you even saw her at all.
A “Sea Monster” who bears a striking resemblance to Nessie can also be found in The Sims 4. She’ll, more often that TS1 Nessie, be found in the waters of Windenburg peacefully coexisting among the seaside town. While you may never be able to spot her in real life, you can at least share a few seconds of bliss with her in The Sims.