Night and day it’s Cinderelli,
Make the fire, fix the breakfast,
Wash the dishes, do the mopping…
Well… Cinderelli-sim doesn’t need to do any of that because she can hire employees to do all that for her while she has a nap.
That’s right… the third Sims 4 Game Pack has FINALLY arrived after only ten thousand years since SimGuruNinja first hinted about it in THAT TWEET. Now our Sims can not only visit, but also own and manage their very own restaurants! We might not be able to actually play as a chef or wait staff, and I’ll admit I was a bit miffed about that at first, but the level of customisability is impressive! We can choose individual meals for the menu, hire staff and choose their uniform, and even choose which category of clothing our customers wear! If you want Sims to dine in their swimwear and have them served by employees in bear outfits, you can totally do that! And as a manager your Sim does have an important role to play, they need to chat to customers which improves their mood and their reviews. They also need to manage the employees, offering them encouragement… or criticism. All in all, owning a restaurant is pretty involved.
Now, you might remember Cinderelli’s recent successful leadership of the Happy Clown Club? Well, it only seemed natural for her to staff her restaurant with her new found friends. It worked for Ronald, right?
Oh yeah, and one guy is wearing a hotdog suit. Although The Crusty Pie doesn’t actually serve hotdogs, Cinderelli found the comedy value and the colour scheme of the outfit complementary to the restaurant’s overall theme.
Now… Cinderelli happens to be a TERRIBLE cook. But she does like cake. And pie. And any kind of sweet savoury dish. So she decided to only serve things like brownies, doughnuts, and other sticky carbohydrate goodness. Oh and coffee. Because coffee = life.
I was really shocked at just how many food and drink options we actually have in the game! There is actually a lot of room for customisability here. Although, I hope we get some more types of food soon. Some different themed food from around the world. And vegan options would be great too!
The customers began to arrive while Cinderelli was napping, but she thought she should probably get up and set a good example to her new employees. They didn’t seem too enthusiastic to be honest (you need to check out their responses when you ask them how they’re doing, they’re pretty amusing!). Cinderelli grabbed a bowl of cereal (she knew better than to trust anything made by her new chef) and went to check on her first customers. She found that the customers were really unimpressed by the level of service offered by her host and waitress. Cinderelli reassured them that they would recieve only the highest levels of service from that point on. Then she dumped her empty cereal bowl on their table and wandered off.
Hmmm… Cinderelli’s staff were pretty basic and she couldn’t really be bothered motivating them (maybe the hot Oasis Springs weather was making her feel lethargic?), so she called her new lodger Alan to come and help out. Maybe he could amuse the customers with his amazing comedy skills? Ok, so he was an evil ex-clown, but he was pretty good company now he’d got over that tragic melancholy!
‘Hey there Sausage Boy! You’re doing a great job!’ he said enthusiastically to the host. Sure, he was lying through his teeth but if it motivated Sausage Boy to be a bit less rubbish then it was all for the greater good. The employee was so pleased with this unwarranted praise that he didn’t even care that Alan didn’t know his real name. His performance really did seem to improve after this!
Meanwhile, the first customers’ meal was ready and… the quality was a bit… questionable.
The customers seemed very unimpressed by their meal, so Cinderelli quickly leapt into action and made the situation slightly less awful.
Alan continued working his oily charm on some of the other guests. Luckily, they seemed to appreciate his terrible jokes. I’d made a mistake of putting TVs inside and this seemed to upset the seating arrangements (I’d advise taking TVs out of restaurants but other than this the Sims seem to keep to their own tables quite well). Who wants to eat at a table in the sunshine when you can perch your meal on your lap in front of the telly anyway? I know what I’d rather do! 😄
Sadly, these Sims were not too happy with their meal either (although they were pleased with the overall service). So Alan had a quick word with the chef too.
After Alan had a little chat with the employees to motivate them, the rest of the evening ran quite smoothly. There were no more serious complaints about service and the food was of a steady but satisfying average quality.
It amused me that Cinderelli’s good friend Bjorn Bjergsen arrived for a meal but ate at a different table from his wife Clara! What happened there?! They seemed to enjoy their meals though and left reasonable reviews.
It was getting a bit late and the employees seemed to be getting a bit tired. There’s a really useful feature that lets you stop any more customers from arriving if you choose the option on the host podium! The last customer was Geoffrey Landgraab. Now… I have a soft spot for Geoffrey because he seems like such a nice Sim! But he annoyed me because he was sooooooooo slow! He was that annoying last customer of the evening that takes his time although the staff are glaring at him like GET OUT! And then he had the cheek to complain that the service was slow! No Geoffrey, just… no.
Finally Geoffrey finished eating and they closed the restaurant for the night. Cinderelli autonomously gave Alan a big hug and they seemed really happy with their first attempt at running a business together! They’d even made a small profit! AND nobody had died!
From the trailers and official renders I felt kind of ‘meh’ about the new CAS assets (or CASsets, if you will). Apart from the employee outfits which you’d expect from the pack, I’d only really spotted a couple of nice hairstyles and a pretty dress. However, when I poked about with them in-game I was actually really happy with them! The two full body outfits for women with flowery skirts both have plain swatches, this makes them much more flexible as not all my Sims suit that kind of bold flowery pattern. It also makes it easier to create recolours when we have a plain base to work with, so I appreciate that detail. These two outfits are also just really… nice! They work well for normal Sims and are the sort of thing you’ll see normal people wearing (rather than the very revealing or overly-dressy clothing that we so often see in female CAS). I really like these two items!
And also THAT HAIR!!! It’s so nice! There are other hairstyles available but I think that one is my favourite! It has a bit of a vintage feel, which I really like. In fact, a few of the CAS assets have an old-Hollywood or vintage film feel that really appeals to me. The black dress reminds me of Audrey Hepburn, and the trousers and hairstyle remind me of Katherine Hepburn when paired with a blouse. The male and children’s CAS also has a nice vintage feel (modelled here by Alan and Cinderelli’s adopted ghost child Parker).
I’ve only shown a few of the CAS items but you can see all of them in more detail in XUrbanSimsX’s Overview and Gameplay video below:
There are sooooo many really nice build/buy assets in this pack! They don’t seem to have one particular theme, but they are all so nice and useful and contain many different things that you might find in a restaurant! And plants! Lots and lots of plants! Which is great… if like me, you really like plants! 😄
A couple of the stand-out items for me are the booth seating, which is so helpful for creating restaurants and bars! And there are counter-height tables which use bar stools which I think are really clever! I like that there are two chef’s ovens, and that one of them has a service window! There are also customisable signs: blank signs that you can customise with decals. These decals can also be applied to windows, which is a smart touch.
Many of the objects match existing content too. There are some Japanese style objects in the game already, like the items in Spa Day, and I feel like these packs compliment each other really well. And many of the retail items from Get to Work can be mixed and matched with Dine Out content as seen in The Crusty Pie above, which I pre-built before I had access to Dine Out and just updated with some of the new items.
I like this versatility of content! If you have Cool Kitchen, Movie Hangout and Get Together you’ll find ice-cream, popcorn and coffee on the menu! Now I’d just like some more variety of styles, and different types of food, to create more styles of restaurants! I love that in the future I’ll be able to add a new themed restaurant to match all the new worlds we’ll get! One thing I really like about The Sims 4 is that they are creating these really flexible features! Like the club system in Get Together that gives us so much creative freedom to use the feature in our own way, I love that we are not limited to certain styles of restaurants, and we can create whatever we want with the content we are given. I really do feel like they are giving us tools to play in our own way. Yes, there could always be improvements! Nothing is ever going to be 100% perfect, but on the whole I’m really pleased with how the developers are handling The Sims 4.