The Sims 4 Farmland mod can improve or replace Cottage Living – it’s up to you
The Sims 4 community has worked hard to expand the simulation experience with mods since its release in 2014, helping to extend the life of the game and diversify its content. But The Sims 4 Farmland mod is something very different – it’s the first time a full-scale mod has dropped in the weeks following an identically-themed official expansion pack: The Sims 4 Cottage Living. . This creates a unique situation for both the modder (a Frenchman named Arnie, who previously worked in the film industry) and EA, as the culmination of months of hard work now clashes in a battle between free and paid content.
The Sims 4 Farmland mod is a free download for PC gamers available at Arnie’s Patreon, while The Sims 4 Cottage Living expansion pack costs $40 / £34.99 for PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, PS4 and PS5. After The Sims 4 Kits controversy sheds some light on the cost of The Sims expansions, Farmland’s release seems particularly poignant. Deciding between the two is entirely down to your financial situation, your preferred gaming platform, and your preferred way to play The Sims 4. You can determine that having both is the best way to go, or choose content rather than another. I’m just here to help you make an informed decision.
Note: You will need The Sims 4 Cats and Dogs and The Sims 4 Seasons for the Farmland mod to work.
A semi-open bocage
For many Simmers, the lack of an open world breaks the immersion of The Sims 4, as there’s nothing more shocking than going to visit your neighbor just to immediately get a loading screen. At Arnie’s popular open world mod from Brookheights, there was a mix of open locations your Sim could explore without a loading screen and rabbit holes, which are areas your Sim disappears into to complete a task. Farmland is a bit different, as it mixes open-world areas with traditional Sims 4 gameplay features.
Farmland takes the semi-open world concept and runs with it to the bank (which you can actually visit with this mod). Eden Hills replaces the Sable Square neighborhood in Brindleton Bay, which comes with The Sims 4 Cats and Dogs expansion). You will encounter an initial loading screen to get to Eden Hills, but once you get there, you can freely visit five huge terrains with multiple massive open areas in each of them. The Farms and Fields area alone is larger than five of the largest Sims 4 lots combined and is divided into plots of land that you can purchase to set up your farm on. If you need to get a loan for said farm, you can go to the bank and get one, or go to town hall to get the proper permits – again, without loading screens. “I missed The Sims 3 open worlds so much that I decided to try and do something similar that would make the worlds in the game feel a little more alive,” says Arnie.
Eden Hills is impressive and expansive, but the best part about it is that many of the decorative buildings are functional in some way, which is a far cry from The Sims 4 base game. of horses can be used for storage, and a magnificent church called the Temple of Love can be used as a wedding venue. There’s even a supermarket where you can buy fresh vegetables, seeds and toys or sell your own produce to other Eden Hills residents.
Farmland vs. Cottage Living
The Sims 4 Farmland mod has a ton of content spread over a huge space – that’s over 40 64×64 bundles (the largest bundles in the game) combined. Meanwhile, the official Cottage Living expansion features a new world, Henford-on-Bagley, which has three neighborhoods containing four lots each – and a single 64×64 lot.
Farmland offers several other farm animal options than Cottage Living, including pigs, sheep, and horses that require very little maintenance. You can collect the clay that clumps on your pigs’ little orbs and use it to make sculptures, or shear your sheep for high-quality wool to make a Weasley sweater.
Cottage Living has similar gameplay features that tie into the new animals available: you can collect chicken eggs, dairy cows, and shorn llamas. But the inclusion of even more animals in Farmland can be a major draw for Simmers – especially those who want the chance to take their horse to Old Town Road. Keep in mind, however, that horses aren’t exactly the smoothest mode of transportation and actually move quite slowly compared to walking.
The Sims 4 Cottage Living also requires a lot of work to keep your crops moving, including regular weeding, watering, bug spraying, and fertilizing. Several times during my Sims 4 Cottage Living Preview, I was reprimanded for filling my Sims queue with farming chores as I tried to make sure she took care of all her crops. The Farmland mod can automate some of the farming tasks, with self-watering setups, greenhouses to protect out-of-season plants, and the tractor that’s meant to help spread seeds. It doesn’t always work, but when it does, it’s much easier than doing everything manually.
And like Arnie’s last major mod, Brookheights, there’s a great story at the center of Farmland that you can choose to follow if you want. While Cottage Living has some great lore, Farmland goes a step further when it comes to tying gameplay to a cohesive story.
Ah, make decisions
In my preview, I said Cottage Living is proof that EA listens to gamers – and I meant it. The expansion has both breadth and depth, a far cry from heavy filler packs like Star Wars Journey to Batuu. But for many long-time Sims players, Cottage Living may feel too small, too late, a feeling exacerbated by the recent release of similarly-themed custom content that costs nothing to play.
The Farmland mod is extremely easy to find, download and play. As someone who has never used the best sims 4 mods in the past I had no problems accessing the necessary files, starting my base game and jumping into Eden Hills – just keep in mind this is a mod and has bugs , as it is not officially supported by EA or extensively QA-tested by a team of developers. But, for Simmers who don’t have the cash to buy another expansion pack, the Farmland mod may just be the only possible way to enjoy farming gameplay. After all, owning all of The Sims 4 content would cost you over $800, and that’s untenable for the majority of the community.
“I remember during the early years of The Sims 4, I couldn’t afford DLC and spent hours online trying to find new content, and I was so impressed, admiring the creators for that. “, Arnie told GamesRadar. “It’s also part of what made me want to start making mods for The Sims…Having free content created by players, for players is essential, it makes people grateful – and they let you know that ‘they are !”
If you’re someone who can afford Cottage Living, I suggest you try a little of both. The semi-open world of Farmland is a great way to enjoy The Sims 4 as it gives you the chance to experience a more lived-in universe without waiting for a loading screen. And the handful of new animals that aren’t in Cottage Living will only add to the expansion’s experience (even if the riding is a little wonky). I’m especially curious to see how Cottage Living’s new extra-large crops will perform with Farmland’s automatic watering devices, or how different animals will co-exist. This is something the modder wants to explore in the future.
“I can see wonderful things happening this summer between the two of them,” Arnie said when asked how Farmland and Cottage Living could work together in the future. “Once I get my hands on Cottage Living, I’ll try to make a version of my mod that mixes the features. I’ve said it many times but let’s say it again and again: Sims expect farming content I’ve been trying to introduce this via a mod for ages, and now the official game is releasing DLC, so players have been really served if I may! overall feeling different! That means more content for players, more hours of creativity, more storytelling, more smiles… and that makes me really happy!”
The release of Farmland and Cottage Living almost simultaneously show that EA has come to understand better what players want from The Sims over the past year or so. Whether that understanding will translate to The Sims 5 and/or include some of the features that Sims like Arnie are adding through mods remains to be seen.
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