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The Sims takes emotion and creativity to the next level

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Posted by: Matt Liebl

As promised, EA gave fans a first look at The Sims 4, the newest installment in their long standing simulation franchise.

This time around, EA is emphasizing Smart Sim, the power to create and control "a new generation of Sims." Sims have evolved, not graphically, but emotionally. Sims are now intelligent, emotional beings whose actions are affected by emotional states such as being happy, sad, flirty, or even depressed.

During the press conference, we were shown just how Sims' emotions help drive gameplay. By performing certain actions, you can affect how a Sim reacts to his surroundings, and essentially change the outcome of a developing relationship. For instance, we were shown two guys competing for the attention of the girl. By playing a sad song on a violin, one of the guys was able to make the other depressed, and allowing himself to swoop in. But rather than sulk, the depressed Sim exacted revenge by poking a voodoo doll and making his nemesis angry. An angry Sim can't be a flirty Sim so he had to blow off some steam, allowing our once-depressed Sim to go back in an get the girl.

In addition to Sim actions, the environments in which they live can also effect their mood. Furniture and decorations, like a picture of a very suggestive rocket ship, can help set the mood.

Aside from emotion, EA is allowing even more flexibility for creation in The Sims 4. New, powerful tools were shown off like the ability to move entire rooms with the simple click of a button. You can now hand-mold you sim, essentially reaching into the game and sculpting their body and facial features as if you were working with clay. Additionally, you'll be able to manually set their walk styles to match their personalities.

Graphically, not much looks different with The Sims 4, but it seems to be what is under the hood that is truly next-gen. Are new emotions and creation tools enough to get you excited for The Sims 4?

Tags: The Sims 4, Gamescom 2013, EA

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