THE SIMS 4 PS4 REVIEW: Requires The Utmost Patience on Console, But Still Utterly Enjoyable

STORY

Well, all you Sims fans already know the story. You create a Sim, you decide on aspirations and skills, and you tell your Sim what to do throughout its life and career while upgrading his home with the well-earned dough. Sims 4 was originally released for PC in 2014, and finally we were able to play it on PS4 and Xbox One with this latest release.

Almost all of the free PC updates have been included in the console release, but seasonal events such as Halloween and Christmas events have yet to reach us. At least from console release you get to put in your pools, have children and have that all important dishwasher if your Sim doesn't enjoy cleaning.

The inclusion I've rather enjoyed are the aspirations on the bottom left menu bar where your Sim will relay his desires to you based on the traits you selected. Is your Sim creative and loves art? Well, he may want a new painting or go to the neighbourhood museum. Is your Sim a nature lover? Why not take him or her for a walk by the river?

The whole 'story' of your Sim's life is also affected by the new emotions simulator. This means that your Sim can become aggravated, frustrated, elated or moody. Other Sims in the neighbourhood can also be affected by your behaviour, which can affect relationships. And decisions you make can also have an effect on your career. So from the beginning, you have to manage every part of your Sim's life more effectively than before.

sims-4-screen-02-ps4-us-18july2017.jpg

The graphics are absolutely stunning, crisp and clear with an amazing scope with regards to the amount of objects you can place. You can zoom really close into your Sim and objects within the room, and there is a wealth of choices when it comes to Build Mode. Having said that, I did notice that when the screen becomes too busy, there is sometimes a drop in framerate, but not serious enough to make the game crash.

The-Sims.jpg

GAMEPLAY

From the get go, every button has a function. Not only that, but for various modes of the game there is an individual button set. Character creation mode, build mode and live mode all have their own sets, and Maxi Games made it easy for you to work out which does what by highlighting the button scheme button on the top right of the screen. Click in L3 and the relevant button set will be revealed.

Moving around can be tricky at first though. If you press the central Ps4 pad, you switch between a cursor and moving between on-screen menu tabs. This has often led me astray and got me frustrated trying to get to a certain setting. Yet once I was used to it and settled into a comfort zone, it was easy to manipulate and move around. 

One of the most impressive features to me was the Build Mode. They have made it so easy to select how you want to build, what you want to build and to copy and paste certain features through the eyedropper. This has been by far the easiest Sims to build on console with by far. Once again, you have to get used to how to move between various build settings, but once you have the knack of it, it is easy going.

 The user interface may alarm you at first. If you are not used to Sims, it could overwhelm you and you may spend the first 10 - 20 minutes just working through the menus and reading through the tip clouds that pop up now and again. Yet, the interfaces are wonderfully set out, out of the way in each corner and easily accessible.

What's great about having this for console is that, when new DLCs and packs are released in the PlayStation shop, you can buy and download it to be added to your main game. There is a countless amount of replayability available, as you can create new characters with new traits to reach new career heights that your other Sims might not have been able to. The only limit to replayability is if you happen to get bored with it, and if you are Sims fan, I don't see that happening anytime soon.

TS4_GP4_Screen1.jpg

WHAT IT COULD HAVE DONE BETTER

Sims 4 on PS4 doesn't need much to improve it, except for small glitches here and there that aren't really worth complaining about. As mentioned before, the only thing missing that the PC version has are the Seasonal events, which might still be coming to the console versions. For now, it is very much absent and it would have made for an even more exciting experience.

the-sims-4-review-01.jpg

FINAL VERDICT

Not having a gaming PC, I don't get to play Sims games until they come to console. So it is always with some exhausted excitement and perhaps some fear towards poor performance that I obtain it for console. Sims 4 was not only a great decision to buy, but my favourite console Sims game ever. I can't remember the last time a game had me up late into the morning hours like this. 

Yes, the console version requires the utmost patience at times, especially when learning the button configuration and finding menu tabs. Yet once you've played for a few hours, you became an ace at it and can focus solely on your Sim's development. Sims 4 is an utter pleasure to play on PS4 and I will be stuck playing this for months to come.