For many players, the appeal of The Sims primarily lies in the customization aspect; in creating Sims of ourselves, our partners, our family, and our friends. We can give them personality traits and quirks that sometimes make them a little too much like the real thing, and it’s fantastic fun.
With that said, though, many series veterans have a soft spot for some of the pre-made Sims too. Recurring families and individuals are a hallmark of The Sims, and there’s even some interesting family lore that has advanced as the series has progressed.
Let’s take a look at some characters that just kept cropping up in the Sims games!
10 The Goth Family
That’s right, friends. We’re kicking this party off the right way, with probably the best-known recurring Sims family of all. The Goths originally consisted only of Mortimer, Bella, and their daughter Cassandra, and were one of the starting families of The Sims.
They would go on to return in Sims 2, 3 and 4, and always have a vital role in the general lore of each entry (for instance, Gunther Goth, Mortimer’s father, is reported to have founded Pleasantview, one of the major neighborhoods of The Sims 2).
More Goths would be introduced as the series went on, including Alexander, Cassandra’s brother.
9 The Crumplebottom Family
Speaking of the Goths, our next recurring Sims family has a very close connection with them. Cornelia Goth was a Crumplebottom before marrying Gunther, and the two families definitely have a lot in common. Most notably, their wealth and influence.
Our first encounter with the Crumplebottoms occurs in Hot Date, the third Expansion Pack for the original game. The Miss Crumplebottom we meet here is later revealed to be Agnes, who once lived in Pleasantview, too.
In The Sims 2, the prominent Crumplebottoms, Prudence and Simon, are deceased. They're only encountered in ghostly form (as is Agnes’s husband, Erik Darling, who tragically passed away before she could even change her name to his). Agnes is also featured in The Sims 3.
8 The Pleasant Family
On the surface, things certainly seem pleasant for the Pleasant family. The trouble is, though, as so many of us know, families can be big, complicated beasts, and things aren’t always as rosy as they may seem.
The Pleasants crop up various times in the series and they’re perfect soap opera/Sims game material. They’re very wealthy, too (Daniel and Mary-Sue Pleasant are honeymooning on a tropical island in The Sims 3’s Sunlit Tides), but there are affairs with maids, troubled children, and all kinds of other issues beneath the surface for the player to resolve. Or just revel in and make it even worse, obviously. You know how Sims players can be.
7 Michael Bachelor
The Bachelors is one of the oldest established families in the series. In the original game, we meet Michael Bachelor, a singleton lounging in the Sim Bin of Neighborhood 1. Of course, he can live with anybody and do anything you see fit, but lore-wise, this Bachelor is certainly intended to be a bachelor in the first installment of The Sims.
Later in the series, we learn of his connection to the famed Bella Goth; the two Sims are siblings.
Michael reappears in The Sims 2 as a ghost, and we learn a little more about his life: he eventually went on to marry Dina Caliente (more on the Calientes soon). Meanwhile, in The Sims 3, he’s a teenager living in Sunset Valley. In addition, there are actually two Michael Bachelors with different aspirations, skin tones, and such!
What a complex Sim.
6 The Caliente Family
Now, this is where those family connections really start to get tricky. The roots of some of these family trees stretch for miles, friends.
As we saw previously, Michael Bachelor did not remain a bachelor. He married Dina of the Caliente family before passing away of old age during The Sims 2’s timeline. Dina and her twin sister Nina live on 170 Main Street, and their personalities ensure that they’re always at odds with each other.
Nina’s partner Don Lothario lives next door and is romantically involved with both sisters (apparently unbeknownst to either of them). Another perfect recipe for high Sims drama.
5 The Newbie Family
The Sims is a super accessible franchise, but it’s still pretty darn difficult at times. There’s a lot to get to grips with. Ensuring that your Sims can keep their jobs, keep themselves fed and cleaned, take care of their children, and not wet themselves on the rug? It’s like real life, and we all know that real life can be a whole heck of a lot to handle at times.
For this reason, yes, a Sims tutorial is always gratefully received. To help us out with this, the Newbie family is at hand. We first meet Bob and Betty Newbie in the first game (the tutorial is mandatory before they can be played ‘properly’), and they would go on to appear in console versions of The Sims 2. In the third game, Robert and Mags Newbie and their son Bob feature, but they don’t serve as a tutorial this time around.
4 The Landgraab Family
Ah, the Landgraabs. This series seems to have a way with creating deplorable, wealthy characters, doesn’t it?
In the original game (on consoles) and The Sims Bustin’ Out, we meet Malcolm, Dudley, and Mimi Landgraab — the richest landowner around and his two infuriating-rich-kid children.
The Landgraab name pops up throughout the series. Landgraab House and the secret society in The Sims 2: University is named after them, and Malcolm Landgraab IV is featured in the Open For Business Expansion (he lives in a huge, ridiculous mansion, naturally). In the third game, more Landgraabbs live in Oasis Landing, while Geoffrey, Nancy, and Malcolm return in The Sims 4’s Oasis Springs.
3 The Burb Family
You might think that hefty Expansion Packs and DLC are more of a recent development in gaming, but that's not so. The original The Sims got an ample crop of them itself. In the fifth content pack, The Sims: Unleashed, we meet our next recurring family: the Burbs.
This expansion added pets to the game for the first time, so it’s no surprise that Brad, Tiffany, and Johnny Burb also have a dog, Tucker. They lived in Old Town in the first game, before reappearing in the Sim Bin of Pleasantview next time around.
In the third game, they appear in the Dragon Valley world.
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2 Don Lothario
Ah, yes. The silver-tongued charmer of the Sims series, Don Lothario has made various appearances throughout the games. While he didn’t appear in the original game, he immediately made his presence known in The Sims 2, just like his principle love interest, the Calientes (yep, both sisters).
The local Romeo of Pleasantview in the second game, he lives in Riverview in The Sims 3 and Oasis Springs in the most recent title. The Sims 4’s Don Lothario looks markedly different to his prior appearances in the series, but that’s due to the game’s odd position in the overall continuity.
1 Ginia And Tara Kat
Now, I’m not sure what the game’s trying to say here, but there’s more than a whiff of the cat lady from The Simpsons about this mother and daughter duo.
Ginia Kat appears in The Sims: Unleashed, taking full advantage of the newly-added pets to live alone with four cats: Boots, Maggie, Waggles, and Scout.
Tara Kat is playable in The Sims 2, appropriately enough in the Pets Expansion. She has three cats of her own, and as reported by The Sims Wiki, appears to have been adopted by Ginia (she doesn’t appear on her family tree). It’s one of those obscure connections that the game never quite makes clear.