I was honestly quite shocked when I heard from SimsCommunity and BlueBellFlora that EA is releasing a pretty major update to The Sims 3. It’s a Mac-only update and macOS Catalina is being cited as the catalyst. EA is going to upgrade The Sims 3 to be both 64-bit compatible and to use Apple’s Metal graphics engine. This version is going to be titled “The Sims 3 (64-bit and Metal)”.
The Sims 3: A Royal Pain in the Ass
The problem with The Sims 3 is that with the recent updates to MacOS, it’s been increasingly difficult to install The Sims 3. In the last few versions, there have been documented problems with the install process. To fix the problem, you need to fiddle with the application contents. Uninstalling it can be a pain in the butt if you want to ever play it again. Not to mention if your Mac was new enough, it was going to require some extra jiggery pokery to play The Sims 3.
A lot of this could be bugs with both the Windows and Mac versions. A lot of it could be the fact that The Sims 3 for Mac was a poorly developed Cider port. It definitely can’t access all your memory being 32-bit. Honestly, I thought EA would have just moved on to The Sims 4 and the Sims 3 was abandoned. This announcement, however, changes that assumption.
It crashed all the time, its save files ate a sizable chunk of your hard drive, saving itself was a pain in the ass that could result in you losing game progress, moving between worlds was an ordeal that required your Sim to abandon all their friends in the old world as if they had made aliyah to Israel pre-Internet. But it was still fun to play and I spent plenty of hours playing it.
The Sims 4: Does it better
While The Sims 4 doesn’t yet have everything The Sims 3 did, what they have released is much more superior than what was in the Sims 3. Vampires in the Sims 4 contained a progression tree which allowed you to select powers and weaknesses, whereas no such thing existed in The Sims 3. The only upgrade to Vampires in The Sims 3 was the immortality reward. And that resulted in sparkly vampires.
Of all the things I wanted in my Sims games, a crossover with Twilight was not one of them. It’s also worth noting that Create-a-Sim was significantly improved in The Sims 4.
It seems everything they’ve done in The Sims 4 thus far is better. All the occult life states are better, the implementation of toddlers was better, and there are plenty of additions to Create-a-Sim and the Build/Buy tools that make The Sims 4 a pleasure to play.
Having said that, though, The Sims 4 is a different game from The Sims 3. From the artistic style to the things that the DLC adds on, I feel as though different stories are being told. The Sims 4 was an environment where a game pack like Strangerville wasn’t necessarily out of place. A lot of things are better in The Sims 4 but a lot of things are also different to the point where it feels like the two games are divergent. There is still space for both to exist and be playable games.
So, why do I bring all this praise for The Sims 4 up? Especially in a post about The Sims 3 and compatibility with macOS Catalina? Simply put, it’s a nice gesture from a company that has a reputation for being less than nice. They’re not necessarily making extra money by making this move. I mean, this does future-proof The Sims 3 for a bit longer. They might be able to get a few new sales of The Sims 3 and DLC from some new customers and might be able to keep the DLC store on TheSims3.com open a bit longer. I would argue that they might be able to make more money developing new DLC for The Sims 4.
As someone who has all the Expansion Packs for The Sims 3, the base game and a couple stuff packs, I appreciate that I’ll be able to pick up the game again next year. That alone is a couple of hundred dollars in DLC that I spent on The Sims 3, not to mention the DLC I have on the Sims 3 store.
That fact alone is causing me to trawl Amazon for a copy of The Sims 3: Katy Perry’s Sweet Treats.