The Sims is still a creative goldmine for content creators

The Sims has always been a popular game among gamers regardless of which iteration we are talking about. With four games for the main title, the franchise’s enduring history still goes strong today. This can be seen in the constant additions made via DLC – such as the latest My Wedding Stories game pack, which adds brand new wedding-related content – ​​and a thriving international community that has grown since the release of its first. title in 2000.

The Sims community can be found in a number of different places, including EA’s official Sims forums, social media, and even various sites focused on sharing custom player-created content (CC) like The Sims Resource, a popular CC website that currently hosts over a million uploaded creations. But there’s one space within The Sims community that has stood out for many Sims players: content creators on YouTube.

YouTubers who make Sims-centric videos are certainly leaving their mark on the community by sharing their own unique experiences of the series, whether through their own individual games that they decide to share or simply by engaging. with the Sims community through their channel.

Along with the large Sims community on YouTube, I spoke with two content creators who shared what it’s about The Sims that has captivated them so much over the years. The creators are still in love with the series all these years later because it’s a game that gives them complete freedom in how they play and the stories they tell.

The Enduring Appeal of The Sims

With a series that has over 20 years of history, every gamer will no doubt find different elements of the game appealing. Add to that the unique factor of being a content creator and Sims’ appeal can vary as both a gamer and a YouTuber. So what exactly attracts Sims content creators?

Speaking with Mollie Faux-Wilkins (also known as TheEnglishSimmer), a YouTuber who has been making videos about The Sims for over eight years, and Malixa, a content creator who originally joined YouTube in 2018, I able to find out more about what appealed to me. the most for them as players and creators.

“As a child, I loved to write and draw my own stories with my own characters, so when I discovered The Sims, I felt like I could create my own virtual characters and tell stories,” Faux-Wilkins told Digital Trends. “I had never played a video game where I could make up my own stories instead of just playing someone else’s. I’ve managed to create a platform on YouTube and Twitch where I can create characters, tell stories, and have people consume that content and relate to those characters.

Malixa, who both shares videos on her YouTube channel and streams regularly on Twitch, has been playing for The Sims 2 era and regularly watched other gamers share their own Sims creations online.

“Once I was able to get a good computer, I was finally able to create content for my favorite game,” says Malixa. “I think for me, it’s so much fun to be able to create stories with The Sims and see it all unfold in front of you. And I wanted to share the stories that I created with my Sims to an audience and I found my way here [to YouTube].”

A shared love of storytelling in The Sims is a main draw for both content creators that has endured over the years – something that many Sims players can no doubt relate to as well. And with new official and fan-made content regularly released, as well as game mechanics that further promote the freedom within the story potential that Faux-Wilkins and Malixa love, there doesn’t seem to be a shortage of factors about The Sims that both keep the creators’ interest piqued.

“I had never played a video game where I could make up my own stories instead of just playing someone else’s.”

Something that keeps Faux-Wilkins coming back is the fact that The Sims has four main titles in the franchise. She’s able to revisit the first three games as often as she wants, but she also notes another feature she appreciates to keep the game fresh.

“I think what really helps The Sims is the fact that you can always start a new game without losing the progress of your others,” says Faux-Wilkins. “If I stumble upon a new challenge created by the community or think of a new character, I know I can start working on it in The Sims right away and if I ever feel like I bored with some save, I can change how I play in the next one.

Endless customization

The Sims regularly receive changes in the form of game expansions and packs and free base game updates that further add to the customization options available to players. Free updates often include additional clothing and furniture, but they have also included more comprehensive updates such as adding the ability to customize Sims without any gender constraints and an upcoming update that will allow players to customize their Sims’ pronouns.

With such an emphasis on customization, both official packs and player-created custom content, it was no surprise that Faux-Wilkins and Malixa had a lot to say about their own favorite additions to the game.

Two Sims walk down the aisle after getting married in My Wedding Stories.

Malixa’s favorite updates were changes that made it even easier to create a wide variety of Sims, like the pronoun update and a 2020 update that added over 100 player skin tone options to the game. basic.

“I’m super excited for the pronoun update because I feel like more people will finally be able to represent themselves without having to use mods or CC,” says Malixa. “I know for me, I get super excited whenever I see someone who looks like me or whenever my culture is represented in any form of media. It makes me proud to be who I am and to see that represented in my favorite game is everything.

Base game updates bring many new options to the table for players and content creators who want to tell a wide range of stories through their own games. The same can also be said for game packs and larger expansions.

“When a new pack comes out, it allows me to create new series that focus on new content while trying to find ways to incorporate entertaining and relatable stories, which is a challenge I love as a as a creator,” says Faux-Wilkins. “I always feel like the community has such a buzz around new content because it’s so fun to see how everyone interprets it differently and makes it their own. I think those are the times when I probably feel the most inspired as a creator.

Building communities

As with any video game, community can also impact how players experience a game. And The Sims community is no different. It is an important part of the game experience for Faux-Wilkins and Malixa as creators who continually share their unique Sims stories with others.

“When I found Sims content online, which inspired me to start my own YouTube channel, I didn’t even know there was an active community for The Sims!” said Faux-Wilkins. “But there are Sims gamers scattered all over the world and I’m so lucky to call so many of them my friends. I’ve managed to find so many like-minded people who don’t mind discuss all my thoughts on video games and I think it’s really special to finally feel like you’ve found your people.

“I’ve even met my closest friends through the Sims community, and I’m so thankful for that.”

There is a sense of shared passion for storytelling within the community which can be seen by players like Faux-Wilkins and Malixa who decide to share their ideas and characters with others through their videos. Unlike what is a single-player game, The Sims suddenly becomes a kind of shared experience.

“I love sharing what’s going on in my games and I love seeing what other people are creating from their games. I love the community because sometimes playing the game alone can feel lonely,” says Malixa. “So with the community there, I feel like I’m sharing my love for the game with a group of friends. I’ve even met my closest friends through the Sims community, and I’m so thankful for that.

The Sims has a lot of freedom to offer players with a community that fully supports them – both among the creators who spend time sharing their games and their fellow fans who watch. For these two content creators, the full creative control The Sims affords them is a unique way for them to create stories and characters they’d love to see on a real canvas of their own making.

Interview responses have been edited slightly for clarity.

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