Cinderelli Investigates: Strangerville

A big thank you to EA for providing me with early access via the Game Changers program. ŦĦ€ ₣ŘỮƗŦ Ø₣ ŦĦ€ ΜØŦĦ€Ř ƗŞ βØỮŇŦƗ₣ỮŁ.

Strange things happen all the time in the world of The Sims 4. Take, for example, the way everyone forgot about the existence of weather and seasons for years and then suddenly snow started falling from the sky again! ƤŘΔƗŞ€ ŦĦ€ ΔŁΜƗǤĦŦ¥ ǤỮŘỮŞ! Or the way all Sims used to be created equal until Simstagram became a thing and everyone started screaming at those weird glowing Sims because apparently they were FAAAAMOOOSE! ØỮŘ €¥€Ş ΔŘ€ ŞŦΔŘŘ¥! Or the mystery of why there are cars driving up and down the streets but nobody knows anyone who actually owns a car and there doesn’t seem to be any way of getting inside them. ŴĦ¥ ĐƗĐ ¥ØỮ ΜΔҜ€ ƗŦ ŦĦƗŞ ŴΔ¥ ΜØŦĦ€Ř???

But nothing… NOTHING! …had prepared Cinderelli_Sim for what was about to happen next!

But seriously… there are going to be spoilers in this post. Lots of them. Don’t say I didn’t warn ya!

Cinderelli was innocently enjoying gardening and dreaming of being famous when she heard a strange whirring sound. The next thing she knew a whole new world (don’t you dare close your eyes) had appeared!

‘We have to investigate this,’ she announced to The Beast, ‘there is a mystery to solve!’

‘Ok. But it sounds suspicious. Maybe we should leave the kids with Grandma and Granddad Mouse?’

And just like that Cinderelli and The Beast were magically whisked away to Strangerville.

‘This place reminds me of something…’ Cinderelli mused, surveying the dusty mountains and dry orange sand. ‘I feel like I’ve been somewhere like this before. A long long time ago.’

‘STRANGEE!’ The Beast replied as he checked out the tiny little trailer they would call home for the next few weeks. ‘Oh look! There’s a robot I can beat up!’

‘Maybe you should put some pants on?’ Cinderelli suggested, one eyebrow raised.

‘Nah, I get more kick range in my underpants!’ The Beast launched into a roundhouse kick and Cinderelli averted her eyes.

‘I guess I’ll go and explore the neighbourhood then!’

The Beast had been enjoying his new sparring hobby for a few minutes before he became aware of a presence behind him. He looked up to see an elderly man lumbering towards him.

Hmm… he looks awfully tense. Maybe he want to ask me about yoga stretches.

As the gentleman ambled closer, The Beast realised that there was something… very strange… about him.

‘Uh… hello,’ The Beast waved a hand in front of the man’s face, ‘Anyone home?’

The man jerked his body awkwardly, ‘ŁØØK ŦØ ŦĦ€ ŞK¥ IŦ Ŵ€ŁĆØΜ€Ş UŞ ΔŁŁ!’

‘Yeah, the sky is great. Really… blue.’

The Beast stepped back and allowed the awkward man to continue on his way.

I should probably lock the trailer door, The Beast thought. And it was a wise decision as suddenly more weird locals wobbled and jerked their way into the trailer park.

‘ØUŘ €¥€Ş ΔŘ€ ØƤ€Ň!’

‘Oh, hi there,’ The Beast waved politely as he unobtrusively locked the trailer door behind him.

One woman was carrying fruitcake, ‘ĆØŇŞUΜ€ ŦĦ€ FŘUIŦ ØF ŦĦ€ ΜØŦĦ€Ř!’

‘That looks delicious,’ The Beast lied, ‘Tell your mother I said thanks for the fruitcake.’

An awkward silence followed. The woman stared at him. He stared at her. She was still holding the fruitcake.

‘Uh… you can just put that over there on the picnic table,’ The Beast laughed nervously.

The woman continued to stare at him with that blank smile.

The Beast raised one hand… he couldn’t help himself… what if he just… slapped her a little bit?

‘Hey! Snap out of it!’

The woman continued to stare.


The Beast jumped as the man suddenly spoke right behind him. With that last word the group shuffled away.

Meanwhile, Cinderelli had stumbled across an interesting stall full of weird and wonderfull oddities.

A geeky guy with a colander on his head and an Simluminati t-shirt waved her over. ‘Hey, you there! Are you tired of the government listening in on your phonecalls? Worried aliens will abduct and impregnate your husband? Concerned about why there are so many cars but nobody knows how to drive them? Well step right up to Erwin’s Oddities and we will help you find the solution you need!’

‘Nice hat!’ Cinderelli quipped.

‘Oh, you like it?’ Erwin tilted his colander proudly, ‘It may be rudimentary but it will stop The Mother from taking over your grey matter.’

‘I’ll take one!’ Cinderelli said eagerly, ‘Do you have it in black?’

‘Of course!’ Erwin pulled a colander out from under the counter. Pretty soon Cinderelli was feeling delightfully silly in her new hat!

‘So who is this Mother person and what does she want with my brain?’

Erwin shrugged, his colander wobbling comically on his head, ‘We’re not sure exactly… but you’ve seen those Sims acting weird around town right? Well, they keep talking about someone or SOMETHING called “The Mother”. There’s a lot of military in town and they’ve been showing a lot of interest in the science facility lately. We think they are working on some kind of mind control device!’

‘Mmmmhmmm,’ Cinderelli said, noticing something pulsing on the guy’s t-shirt, ‘And who is “we”?’

Erwin leaned closer to her and whispered in a conspiratorial tone, ‘Those of us who aren’t afraid of the truth. Don’t trust anyone in the military. And don’t speak about any of this without wearing your hat. They’re listening!’

Cinderelli rushed home, she couldn’t wait to tell The Beast about the crazy conspiracy guy and to show off her new hat! But The Beast wasn’t at the trailer. There was a note on the fridge…

‘Gone Drinkin’!’

Cinderelli sighed. Well, if she was going to check out the local bar she should probably get changed. And she wanted to get some flowers planted ready for the change in season. As she was planting her autumn flowers she noticed a strange fruit half-buried in the soil.

‘I guess you can surprise me,’ she whispered to the pulsating orb as she patted it gently into the dirt.

Cinderelli didn’t have to look far to find The Beast! The bar was right across the road from the trailer park and The Beast was stood outside talking animatedly to a crowd of Sims dressed in military garb.

‘And then I said, “Tell your mother I said thanks for the fruitcake”!’

The soldiers burst out laughing and there was a smattering of applause and some cheerful back-slapping.

Cinderelli adjusted her colander nervously. Erwin had told her to be wary of the military.

The Beast spotted her, ‘Cinderelli! Come here and meet my new friends!’

‘Uh… hi…’ Cinderelli waved shyly. The soldiers smirked as they eyed her head-wear which annoyed her and made her feel rebellious. Loudly and proudly she asked, ‘Do you like my new hat!?’

‘It’s… very you.’ The Beast laughed, hugging her happily, ‘Guess what?’


‘I joined the army!’

‘Oh,’ Cinderelli thought for a moment then whispered, ‘Well, that’s great! You can be my spy on the inside. You can get top secret information about The Mother.’

‘What are you talking about?’ The Beast tapped her colander playfully, ‘Come on, you weirdo, let’s get you a drink!’

Will the mother take over The Beast’s mind because he refused to wear a colander on his head?

Will Cinderelli get herself into trouble with the military because of her conspiracy theories?

Will anyone eat the fruitcake?

Find out in Part 2 of Cinderelli Investigates Strangerville!


Cinderelli Investigates Seasons: Spring

Thank you to EA for providing me with an early access code!

Cinderelli_Sim needed a bit of help to investigate this pack, so she recruited The Beast, The Girl, The Boy and Luna the Cat to help her out. She earned quite a bit of money from her jungle adventures so when they got back they moved into this sweet little cottage, the perfect place for Cinderelli to practice her gardening skills!

When I first loaded the world after installing Seasons, the game asked me which Season I wanted to start in and I chose Spring. Now, I expected it to be the first day of Spring, however, it actually started me on the 6th day out of 7 (huh???). I think it did this because I’d already played in the world and must have last saved on the Friday, the calendar had to match and so the game put me on the Friday of Spring. Sadly, this didn’t give me much time to grow my Spring flowers!

Mildly perturbed, I went ahead and updated the lot with some of the new build/buy goodies! Like THE GLASS ROOFS!!! I plonked one on my greenhouse and I’m so excited to play around with these some more. I remember being really disappointed that TS3 Seasons didn’t come with a greenhouse, so I’m so pleased to get these in Seasons this time!

The first thing I did was jump into Options. I like that you can set the length of the season but I wish we could enable/disable specific seasons like we could in previous games. For review purposes I stuck to the standard 7 days, but when I’m playing normally I think I’ll use the full 28 days.

You also get some weather options where you can disable specific weathers. I guess this is because thunderstorms and blizzards might be particularly dangerous or destructive, so it’s good you can turn those off if you want to. You can also turn off rain and snow which is great because sometimes that can slow performance or just generally bother players, so I’m happy to have all these options.

Lastly, there is a toggle to ‘allow temperature effects on Sims’ and I’m so happy about this! Because, while I love that temperature effects are a thing, I don’t want to always be worrying about them if I’m focused on a different aspect of the game. Plus, some players may find this too hard to manage and prefer to only play the more fun and casual side of the game. Options are good. Yay options!

At the bottom of the screen there’s a little tab that lets you easily check the weather forecast for the day, which is handy at a quick glance. There’s a more detailed 7 day forecast on the calendar. Luckily, the weather was warm and only partly cloudy. Which was good because the Beast is one of those people who insists on wearing shorts in all weathers! Not that Cinderelli_Sim seemed to mind.

I’ll admit… the first few minutes of the game were spent by me giggling at the sunlight that was following The Beast around (which he previously picked up while exploring the jungle) and watching Luna the kitten bounding around and falling on her face.

When I finally got my seasonal act together, I had Cinderelli join the new Gardening career.


Yeah, I’m excited about that! Gardening is always one of my favourite activities in the game and I’m so happy to have it as an actual career option now. Especially since we have the new flower arranging skill!


I love the name of the workplace ‘Peter’s Petals and Pods Landscaping’ and I was so pleased to see this is a Work from Home career with active options! Straight away Cinderelli had the task of purchasing some seeds which, naturally, she did.

Seasons will now affect when plants will grow. I’m very excited about this as it’s something I loved about Stardew Valley, planning ahead and thinking carefully about which plants I wanted to grow each Season. It also adds a bit of extra challenge and difficulty if you are planning on making a living from your plants. But don’t worry, you can still put your plants indoors if you want them to grow all year round!

When you hover over a harvested item or seed in your inventory, you will be able to see which Season the plant will grow in.

Cinderelli planted some seeds and watered them using the new feature that allows you to water a number of plants at once. Instead of watering them one by one, you now water all the plants in the nearby area. This is helpful if you want to speed up the gardening process. It’s less helpful if you quite like your game to be a bit challenging. Cinderelli seemed pretty pleased with herself anyway.

When Cinderelli looked up, she noticed the rest of the family were being a bit chaotic! the Boy had thrown paint all over the ground, so she asked him to clean that up. Luna was being adorably distracting and playing with her ball. But where was The Beast?

Oh… Oh? What’s he doing in there?

I like that The Boy was just stood there watching him like, ‘Dad… why?’

Then… the most adorable feature happened! The Boy autonomously started drawing at the activity table. Only, this wasn’t an ordinary drawing, it was a spring decoration! It was so adorable! Obviously, he must have made this to give to his smother, so I had him pick it up and give it as a gift to Cinderelli! For an awful moment I thought she was going to reject it! It would have broken my heart! Luckily, it was just Cinderelli’s resting b**** face and she did seem happy in the end.

These two features are great! You can click on a Sim and choose to gift money or an item from your inventory. It’s so sweet! I had The Beast start to do woodwork so he can give the sculptures as gifts to the kids as well.

The new seasonal craft activities on the craft table and brilliant as well! There are so many! And the items are very sweet and it’s nice to gradually decorate your home with them throughout the season.

Time to check out some of the other new objects! Cinderelli tried to chat with the Scarecrow a few times, he seems like a pretty chill guy, but I didn’t manage to unlock any new features with him yet. The Beast seemed to have a thing for the bees, he had a want to gather honey. He did ‘disturb’ the bees once without getting stung but I think he annoyed them because Cinderelli later had an uncomfortable ‘stung’ buff. Generally though, The Beast and the bees got along pretty well and soon he had some yummy honey to eat! the honey looks lovely on shelves and I hope I can sell it in my grocery stores!

Hipster Beast: the bee whisperer!

Another great feature is the swing set. The animations are nice and it’s adorable that kids can push one another. The Girl pushes The Boy on the swing in real life, so this was extra sweet to watch! Only… in real life my daughter is usually dangerously close to getting smacked in the face, whereas The Girl had enough common sense to stand to the side.

After the kids had gone to bed, it was time for the grown ups to have some fun! *wriggles eyebrows* Nah, they just played on the swings too! What did you think I meant?

Time for Cinderelli to get back to work! Of course I chose to work from home so I could play with the gardening features more! She was promoted too, which was surprisingly fast! This meant she was given a packet of fruit seeds, which a nice way of getting more seeds without having to actually buy them.

Her assignment was to ‘research a plant’. This is a new interaction where you click on the plant to learn things about it. In this case it meant Cinderelli took photos, made notes and checked the angle of her chin. Once she finished doing all this she unlocked a new entry in her notebook which told her some facts about daisies, like what you can splice them with. Handy!

Luckily, the daisies she’d planted bloomed within the day (I guess springtime is magic time for daises!) and Cinderelli got to try out flower arranging! When you click on the bench you choose the main flower you want to use or you can select ‘all’. I chose ‘daisies’ and it gave me two options to make: just daisies or daisies and bluebells. Now, this is a bit like cooking, you can make the arrangement more cheaply if you have the correct items in your inventory. Or you can make it anyway but it’ll cost you more. The nice thing about this is that it tells you how much it would cost to buy all the ingredients, and how much of a reduction you’ll get if you have some of the ingredients.

I’m the sort of player who likes to have all the ingredients before I can make something, and you can see in the UI that I only had 2 out of the 3 daisies I needed for the first option. The second option, Daisies and Bluebells, only required 2 daisies as well as 2 bluebells. Since I had half the ingredients, it would only cost me half the price to make this bouquet. But I wanted to find the bluebells!

Luckily, The Beast had spotted some wild bluebells while out jogging around the countryside, so Cinderelli set out to find them! I noticed here that the grass was painted with lots of bright yellow flowers, I think this is new to Windenburg because it is springtime.

Once Cinderelli collected the bluebells she had all the required ingredients and the bouquet was free to make! This is great if you want to run a florist business and make bigger profits, because you can keep costs down by growing your own ingredients! I wish that they’d add more ingredients to the cooking system too, like flour and eggs, so we can make all meals for free as well. They have changed the cooking UI though, to show the discounts.

A little detail I really like about flower arranging is that Cinderelli actually used bluebells and daisies in the animation! They could have used a generic animation for all bouquets like in TS2, but it’s a nice touch to see that she used the right flowers. There’s also a Salt Bae animation which tickles me!

When Cinderelli was done with the arrangement she had the option to pick from a selection of vases (which you can change at any time) and you can take a photo of your bouquet! Which is great if you want to run a florist and have pictures of your stock on the walls! I guess this might be useful later on too as you advance through the career.

I’m so pleased to have flower arranging! I like skills that let you craft something useful, like how the painting skill gives you something to decorate your house with. And I’m also happy we finally have something practical to do with the flowers! So yeah… I’ll probably be overusing this one. My only concern is that the arrangements I’ve seen so far have all looked very similar, just with different flowers, and I’d have liked some variety of shapes. But I’ve only just started playing and I hope I can unlock more styles as I progress.

Cinderelli planted the extra bluebells on her patio. The bluebells are a summer plant so she should have plenty of time to grow them next season! Sadly, her only daisy plant went into hibernation in summer (it seemed to die back and look like it had just been planted). It didn’t actually die though, which I was pleased about. I was going to move the daisy into the greenhouse, which I think would have protected it, but I wanted to see what happened if I left it outside.

As Spring drew to a close, The Boy got an invite from Grandma Mouse to go to the coffee shop in Windenburg. I took the opportunity to go and see what changes there were to the town. Not much had changed, but I do wonder if there are more flowers than usual. I’ll have to keep checking back to see what changes.

That’s it for the Springtime! It was very short because it started on day 6/7 and I’d have liked more time to explore. But it’s off to Summer next and I’m sure there be lots to discover there! I’ll leave you with some screenshots of the interior of the house. I prepared the house using pre-Seasons content and added in a few new items when I got the pack, so not everything you see will be from Seasons. But the pre-Seasons version of the lot is on the gallery already if you want to check it out! And I’ll post an updated version to the gallery when I’ve played through all 4 seasons.

Take care and happy simming! =^_o_^=

Cinderelli Investigates: My First Pet Stuff

Thank you to EA for providing me with an early access code for this pack through the Gamechanger program so that I can investigate it for your beautiful faces.

Who thought one little rodent could cause so much trouble!? This pack has definitely been controversial. Personally, I don’t like how this has been packaged. I thought that small pets should have been included in Cats & Dogs and I think bringing us rodents in a stuff pack so soon after the expansion feels insensitive. I also think I’d have preferred them to have had the rodents as a standalone pack. I can see that some players do want more items for cats and dogs though, so I’m not adverse to having more paid content for that expansion. I just don’t like that this feels mixed, you can’t have one without the other.

I’m also not usually a big pets player. Sure, I like to have them in my game and I can definitely make use out of a rodent but will I ever use more pet clothes?

Well… it turns out this is the pack I never knew I needed.

It turns out dressing you kid or your toddler like you dog IS REALLY FREAKING CUTE!!! Who knew!? But not adults… because if you’re an adult and you wear a matching outfit with your cat then… that’s a bit weird I’m not going to lie. Even Hammy judges you.

So for this review I had to use a different family because Cinderelli is still lost in the jungle of Selvadorada. I chose the Jang family from San Myshuno, basically because I noticed there was a lot of orange in this pack and they seem to like that colour. Oh, and because they also have a child and a toddler in my game, which is perfect (purrfect?) for showing off the new children’s clothing. So I then decided to give them a dalmatian called Coco, a cat called Peanut that looks like a hamster, and a small dog called Fifi which reminds me of Englishsimmer’s dog and which makes me pull this face:

There are two new adult hair meshes in this pack, the short wavy style that is enabled for both genders and a long choppy style that comes in full colour and right highlight versions. I’m not too keen on the choppy style unless I’m making a goth or vampire Sim, but I think the short hair looks great on Anaya.

There are not many clothing items for Sims in this pack since the focus seems to be more on Pets. But you do get some t-shirt recolours which are cute. I particularly like the pocket-hamster t-shirt which reminds me of a real-life cat shirt (which I NEED) but I wish it came in more colour options. There are also some very sweet onsies for kids which are just adorable.

Then there are lots of new clothes and costumes for pets. Now… I don’t think I’m ever going to need to dress a dog to look like Bob Pancakes or Mortimer Goth… but I have to admit that having the option to do so is kind of amusing. There are some items that I do think I’d use. I think Coco looks sweet in the flat cap and I gave it to her as her ‘outdoor’ outfit. And Fifi actually does look kind of cute in the little dress. But my favourite outfits are the onesies and the outfits that match child or toddler clothes.

The Jang family needed a bigger house for their expanding family so I moved them to the big house in Brindleton Bay and did a bit of redecorating! I didn’t think I needed any more pet objects but I actually do like the new items that came with this pack. I think I prefer a lot of them to the expansion stuff, especially the pet beds which look a bit comfier and interesting. Those egg and beef beds are great for kitchens! However, the colour options on the large cat jungle don’t seem to match well with the rest of the pack which is annoying.

The furniture is cute and matches well with existing content and it is particularly useful for kids’ rooms. But I wish the office chair had little faces on them like the chair of the painting table. The new blinds come in three sizes, which is great because I always struggle to find blinds that fit all properly. Oh, and you get two new pet doors too.

The gameplay components of this pack are the rodent habitats with the option of having a hedgehog, rat, hamster or bubalus (which is a voidcritter from the Kid’s Room pack). What no mice!? Rude!

I know that some players were like ‘But my first pet was an African elephant!’ and I understand where they’re coming from. However, I do like the idea of hamsters being my Sim child’s first pet, and having them learn to love and look after their new little friend before moving on to bigger and scarier animals like vampire cats or dogs that think they are a banana.

I can also think of lots of ways I’ll use rodents. I’d love to have them in a school or nursery setting as a class pet. I could set up a petting zoo or have them in my pet themed retail store. And my natural scientist definitely needs a bubalus friend in her lab! In fact, any child with an interest in nature or science will be getting a new rodent buddy.

When I added a pet hamster to the house, the whole Jang family were instantly obsessed! Especially the pets who were constantly grouped around the poor mini-peanut. At first I thought this was really sweet but I think they need to tone that down just a notch. I did like seeing Coco the dalmatian watching Hammy intently in a very realistic dog-like way. And I like that cats can jump up onto the lid of the habitat, even though it is a little unnerving.

Billie claimed the hamster as her own and took the responsibility of feeding, entertaining and generally caring for Hammy. I like that the rodents have a happiness pop-up that appears if you hover the cursor over the habitat, it tells you if their needs are met so you don’t have to guess. I’m a bit paranoid about keeping animals happy and healthy in the game (which I think is why I often find them too much work to have them in every household) so anything that makes it easier to care for them is good for me. Hammy seemed to be quite content while I was playing with this family: running around his enclosure; exercising on his wheel; and rolling in his food. I didn’t see him doing anything weird though, like building a rocket ship, but I did keep excitedly checking on his habitat like ‘Let’s see what Hammy is doing now!?’.

Although I disagree with the way this content was packaged, the actual items are really nice and I’m glad I have them in my game. I honestly didn’t think I’d like this pack that much but as soon as I saw how pure the relationship was between toddler Sam and the dalmatian Coco was I was broken. Seeing them running around and playing dressed as superheros was just too much! They were naturally interacting with each other and Coco was always by Sam’s side and it was the sweetest thing.

So I think my favourite part about the pack is actually the matching child, toddler and pet outfits. There’s just something magical about seeing your toddlers and their favourite companion doing everything together while dressed in identical clothes. Having your Sim-child have that kind of relationship with their best friend is adorable to watch.

Should you buy this pack? I guess you have to weigh up how much you would use this content in your game. If you are the kind of simmer who usually plays with pets and families then you’ll probably get the most out of this pack. I think it really is aimed at quite a specific type of homely gameplay style. I don’t always play that way but I think I’ll be able to use the rodents in other scenarios, like in the natural science area of my museum as a hands-on educational exhibit.

While some of the items in this pack can be used without owning Cats & Dogs, I’m not sure it’s fair to buy a stuff pack if you can only use half the content. So unless you desperately want the rodents I’d probably wait for a sale. But if you do already own C&D and you’d like more content for your pets then this pack adds a lot of matching items which I personally think compliment the existing items really well.

I’m not adverse to getting more paid content for pets in the future, but I’d prefer to have a specific C&D add on with more gameplay, maybe with something like an interactive pet grooming or stylist career. And if they were to add more small pets or a pet store, I think that needs to be fully standalone content. But for now I’d like the gurus to move on to a different theme and… let sleeping dogs lie.

My grumpy-to-interested reaction to this stuff pack as acted out by an adorable hedgehog:

Thank you once again to EA Gamechangers for providing me with the code.

Cinderelli Investigates: Jungle Adventure!

I’m king of the woorrrld!!!

I was HYPED to receive an early access code for The Sims 4 Jungle Adventure Game Pack through the EA Game Changer program because I AM SO EXCITED FOR THIS PACK and the wait has been killing me slowly like evil jungle spider poison!

WHY am I so hyped for this pack? Firstly, because I loved TS3 World Adventures and TS2 Bon Voyage! I really love getting new interesting places to explore in The Sims, it’s not just the vacation or adventure aspect (although those are great too!) but also being able to experience different cultures that I don’t normally get to experience in my day to day life. In Bon Voyage I particularly liked speaking to the local people to learn their traditional dances and songs, and I loved exploring The Majestic Ruins of Jumbok IV!

And World Adventures was a favourite pack for TS3 because I loved having those different worlds to explore and I particularly loved collecting all the exclusive items that were specific to those worlds, not just the relics, but also turquoise gems in Al Simhara and all the different grape varieties in Champs Les Sims. Of course, exploring the tombs was really fun too! And I loved bringing home all the goodies and decorating my house with them.

Another reason why I’m so happy about Jungle Adventures is that I recreated all my characters from TS3 in TS4 but I’ve been missing some of the features. So, for example, one of my Sims is an Indiana Jones style archaeology professor but having neither the education career nor much archaeology beyond digging up the small number of fossils I was at a bit of a loss with him. So I made my Archaeology Mod. But I wasn’t 100% satisfied with it and have been working out what do do to improve it. So when I found out about all the awesome features in Jungle Adventures I was SO FREAKING EXCITED!!! The archaeology aspect looks amazing and it even has it’s own aspiration! YAY!

So, before we sacrifice Cinderelli-Sim to the fate of Salvadorada, let’s watch the gameplay trailer so we know what’s in store for her!

Create A Sim

First stop, Create-a-Sim for some adventure clothes! I also wanted to make The Beast to accompany Cinderelli-sim into the jungle and generally do all the hard work. Since Cinderelli is a clumsy old bean I gave her the Archaeology Scholar aspiration and it’s close to my interests in real-life (I studied Classics at Uni and want to be Mary Beard when I grow up). And since The Beast is a lot more explorer-y and into, you know, actual physical movement I gave him the Jungle Explorer aspiration.

The new clothing is half traditional Spanish-ish style, or Spanish-ish inspired modern clothing. These have lovely bright Peruvian style patterns, cosy knits and LLAMAS!!! And then there are also new adventure-appropriate clothes like cargo pants and denim shirts which scream Indiana Jones and Lara Croft!

Cinderelli got some practical outfits so she can dress up as a renowned archeaologist, but also a couple of bright clothes for attempting to Salsa dance at the local cantina. The new clothing actually reflects what the Beast would wear in real life, it’s very much his style! Sort of an ex-SAS hanging out at the cantina look I guess? Only in rl he has a shaved head and I wanted him to model the new long-haired bandana style, so his simself grew a head of luscious locks just for this adventure!

I really like the CAS assets in this pack, they’re really wearable and adaptable, with plenty of plain versions of the more patterned items. 10/10 gurus, well done!

I’m not going to list every item here, but I’ll be spamming Twitter with plenty of screenshots of different items and how I combined them with other items in the game once the embago lifts. I’ll also try to link to some Youtube CAS videos below.

Adventure Time!

New world icon hyyyype!

The Beast and Cinderelli touched down in Selvadorada and rented a nice little house near the market. They were hungry so I sent them to the food stand to order meals that I did not recognise with my low Selvadorian Culture skill. So I grabbed them something that looked vaguely taco-like and they seemed to enjoy it, even if it did overwhelm their senses a bit, giving them a bad buff. This is a bit like when you send Sims to the Spice District and they have to build up a tolerance to the hot food.

Then I ordered them to grab all the supplies that were available (thank you Motherlode) and shared them out evenly between them. Only, the supplies change and not everything is available all the time. So you have to keep checking back to get all the supplies you need. Luckily (or worryingly) the game randomly gave the Beast a machete, so at least we didn’t have to pull down vines with our bare hands! Yeah… more on that later…

The marketplace area is really pretty! And the paths are kind of winding and it’s fun to try and find your way about at ground level. There’s a lovely little dock area too which is a great fishing spot.

Once they had full tummies and a backpack full of supplies I sent them off to the base camp to explore the jungle area! Once they got there, Cinderelli realised The Beast had forgotten to buy any camping supplies (I didn’t realise until later that you are supposed to buy them from the merchants by clicking directly on them). Luckily the magical jungle supplied a Granite Falls ranger station with the mighty ‘bb.showhiddenobjects true’ spell! And it worked surprisingly well there, I could buy all my camping gear, including the new toddler bed if needed and pet items. And it even correctly directed Cinderelli-sim to the cool looking canvas bathroom!

‘What do you mean you forgot the tent?’

‘Hey, at least we have barrel meat!’

*unamused face*

Next, Cinderelli pretended to be a real archaeologist and started hitting a dig site with a hammer. It made me laugh that her thought bubbles reflected what my childish brain would be thinking, doing Hamlet impressions (‘Alas poor Yorick, I knew him Horatio!’) and thinking I was Indiana Jones.

Artefact shaped dirt clump.

But The Beast was ready to explore!

‘Let’s climb to the top of the mountain!’ he cried, trampling all over the dig site. Without waiting for an answer he jogged off along the path.

‘Uh… sure,’ was Cinderelli’s unenthusiastic response. She was already getting attacked by all kinds of pesky insects including…

Well, the bee stings hurt and put Cinderelli off from following The Beast deeper into the bug infested jungle. So while he attacked some vines with his machete like Rambo doing his gardening, Cinderelli contented herself with cooking some nice, safe, non #BarrelMeat veggie burgers, enjoying the beautiful sunset, and carefully reading the information sign for more tips.


The Beast meanwhile, was a little too enthusiastic with the machete and umm… managed to lose it. Ooooooh no. Then he stumbled on some wild Capybaras and managed to anger a swarm of bees.


So… they called it a night and went home.

While The Beast recovered from his ordeal, Cinderelli went back to the market in search of a new machete. She couldn’t find one, but she did buy some cute wicker baskets and wooden dolls! They’ll be helpful, right? She also found a handy archaeology table and worked on that ‘artefact shaped dirt clump’ and discovered that it really was Yorick all along! Where be your jibes now huh Yorick?

Cinderelli also spotted a wild pupper! Yep, a wild pupper outside of Brindleton Bay!

The next day of adventuring started off really well! Cinderelli and The Beast explored the new area they had uncovered which was a beeeautiful waterfall! Cinderelli found a new dig site while the poor Beast had to tackle the vines with only his machete-less bare hands and The Force. (His hands were more effective.)

Why isn’t this working?

But then… the jungle attacked!

First a friendly spider said hello to Cinderelli. Then they stumbled across a weird egg and were attacked by the creature’s fire-breathing mother!

But they managed to stumble into the next area where Cinderelli enjoyed the view, ate some granola from the cooler, ‘fertilised’ a bush and spent her time feeling generally paranoid about bugs. The Beast was attacked by bats while clearing the next gate, but luckily he had some Bat Bait which managed to distract them.

(They also forgot the cooler and had to go back for it later!)

At last they stumbled into a magical swamp area with sunken ruins. Amazingly the bugs there were kind of glowy and pretty and didn’t want to kill Cinderelli! Some spiders did try to jump The Beast but he had some handy Dr Parker’s Spider Deterrent from that original survival package the game gave him. I noticed too that Cinderelli seemed to have improved her excavating technique, instead of simply hitting the dig site with a hammer, she was now using the hammer to gently chisel the rock away.

The best part was that they found a treasure chest! Cinderelli was so excited she managed to heave the heavy lid off herself! But her moment of pride was immediately dampened by a notification telling her she had angered the gods and was now cursed! Not to worry, I thought, I’ll just have her avoid anything electrical. But no, the gods affirmed she would definitely die of electrocution in three days!

Now… I’m not a fan of random death in the game so this didn’t exactly please me. But during the live stream, the gurus assured us that there were cures for all the poisons and curses, or at least ways to avoid them.

Cinderelli will be fine… right?


Well, Cinderelli if you insist on pillaging ancient cultures for their artefacts, what do you expect!? (Topical comment.)

It was late so Cinderelli and The Beast decided to make camp for the night then set back to the village in the morning to seek advice. But Cinderelli was not to have a good nights sleep! First she got attacked by spiders while inside her tent (too close to a real life camping experience for me!). Then she was rudely awoken from her sleep to be zapped by a peevish god! RUDE! At this point she gave up on sleep and since she was starting to smell worse than a festering sloth she made her way back to base camp. Unfortunately the stink was too much to bear and she stopped halfway down the trail to have an uncomfortably sexy bottle wash. By the time The Beast followed her back to camp, she was stomping around and ready to go home.

While Cinderelli recovered in a comfy bug free bed, The Beast went in search for some way to break the curse. He was supposed to be asking the locals at the cantina but had a few too many drinks and got distracted.

That is NOT how you Salsa, Beast.

Then he spotted the cute stray pupper and tried to befriend it. He even bought little Yogi a new food bowl from the vendor. But sadly, the doggo didn’t want to be adopted and bounded away into the Selvadorian sunset.

Maybe Cinderelli would have better luck? She spoke to a few locals until she found one who had information about an antidote! But she didn’t have any bone dust! Oh well, she’d have to visit the museum and order the 1000 simolean antidote online!

Success! The curse was broken! But the gods had ‘blessed’ her with a new problem…

‘I belong in a museum!’ Cinderelli-skelly giggled.

Well, at least this curse wasn’t as permanent as the last one and would wear off naturally in a few days. Perhaps she could have fun trolling The Beast!

‘What do you think of my new look?’

‘Uh…’ The Beast was lost for words. But he was glad he hadn’t brought home the dog.

That was the end of Cinderelli and The Beast’s first adventure in Selvadorada! If you’d like me to explore with them more please let me know. And look out for more of my random screenshots of The Sims 4 Jungle Adventure on Twitter. ❤

Thank you once again to EA for providing me with the code. Happy Simming!

Cinderelli Investigates: Backyard Stuff

07-23-16_9-56-40 PM

Do you know what we need? More outdoor objects so our Sims can enjoy the perpetual sunshine while it lasts! You know it’s only a matter of time before those pesky gurus send the rain and the snow. XD

Buy Mode Stuff!

I decided that Cinderelli-sim’s house and garden needed a bit of a makeover. The outdoor area was a bit of a dumping ground from the growfruit challenge and it was in desperate need of some landscaping. Luckily, Cinderelli had earned a bit of money from writing books and painting, and so she had enough money to decorate the garden with some of the new items.

07-22-16_11-02-12 AM

07-22-16_11-02-56 AM

07-22-16_11-02-40 AM

07-22-16_11-03-17 AM

07-22-16_11-55-38 AM

One thing I really like about the objects in this pack is that they work so well with other content. While decorating the house I used filters to use items from Get Together, Romantic Garden Stuff, and Movie Hangout, as well as the new Backyard Stuff. I found that the items complimented each other really well and I could mix and match a little. One thing I would have loved to see was some texture continuity, so items from Backyard Stuff could have had matching patterns from Movie Hangout. But I guess I can look to the CC community for that. Although the textures are really nice on the new items, I did find myself wishing each pattern was available for all the different wood shades, particularly on the garden furniture. I was a bit frustrated I couldn’t have the pattern and wood colour I wanted (the red pattern and the dark wood) and had to settle an alternative colour, but it still looked really nice and I was happy with it in the end.

07-20-16_2-36-14 PM

07-20-16_2-37-47 PM

The clutter items in this pack are really nice (if a little on the large side) and I love the outdoor lantern, the nicely animated candle, and the glass bowl of fruit. The fruit comes in different colours to represent different types of fruit and looks really nice in kitchens or cafes with a fresh and healthy theme! I also really like the wooden decorative birdhouse and the stepladders. Although I wish the flowers were separate items from the ladders, and I could decorate the ladders with whatever items I liked. There is a slot on the top step though! I think lots of items in this pack will be useful for indoors and outdoors, in a similar way to the furniture from Movie Hangout Stuff. The ladders would look nice in an arty loft, for example.

07-20-16_2-46-02 PM

A small complaint is that I personally found some of the items in this pack to be a little too bright for my taste. The windmills are very gaudy, and only really feel appropriate for children to me. Other items like the lantern have quite primary colour swatches, and I would have liked a few more muted alternatives. And… wow, that bush is so unnatural! I don’t think I can use that without recolouring it. It wouldn’t look out of place in Sixam though. Another item I wish had a plain option is the water slide, but more on that later.

In general, the objects in this pack are nice and cheerful and I’ll definitely use them a lot! But some of them are a bit too large, and I would have appreciated some more muted colour options.

07-20-16_2-44-07 PM

07-20-16_2-45-46 PM

07-20-16_2-27-23 PM


I wrote GAMEPLAY in capital letters because there is a lot of it in this pack! The star of the show is the waterslide, but there are other smaller objects that add new functionality too, like the bird feeder and the drinks tray. And the dining table has a little unusual tweak which means that SIX sims can sit around it, more than the usual four, which makes it a bit special. There are also some windchimes which have some customisable features. It feels a bit like some of the development time has been dispersed throughout this pack, rather than focusing on one or two specific objects. The main bulk of the animation goes to the waterslide, but in total there are six objects in this pack that have customised features: the waterslide; the bird feeder; the six-seater dining table; the animated windmills; the windchimes; and the drinks tray. The citronella candle also has a nice smoke animation but I’m not sure if that’s new.

While I like having a lot of features, I feel like maybe they stretched themselves a tiny bit too far. The bird animations are a bit too choppy, for example. But all in all the items are really nice.

– The waterslide:

I have to admit, I like this item more than I thought I would! It’s quite a fun object and there are different animations every time your Sim slides, which makes it enjoyable to watch! Alan the Clown was the first to try out the water slide and he was a bit of a pro! He seemed to enjoy doing trick slides!

07-22-16_11-54-31 AM

07-22-16_2-28-59 PM

Parker Mouse arrived home from school (still getting straight A’s, the smart little mouse). Parker is cheeky and decided it was more fun to add soap to the water slide and make it all bubbly! Alan agreed, it was much more fun! I thought it was funny that Parker, a ghost, could float straight back to the starting point and Alan could slide right through him!

07-22-16_12-04-53 PM

07-22-16_12-05-33 PM

07-22-16_12-06-04 PM

07-22-16_12-18-42 PM

07-22-16_12-17-50 PM

Then it was Cinderelli’s turn…

She wasn’t exactly graceful! Later, it made me laugh that she got into bed still covered in bubbles! XD

07-22-16_12-24-24 PM

07-22-16_12-25-52 PM

07-22-16_12-26-57 PM

07-22-16_12-29-32 PM

07-22-16_12-31-22 PM

07-22-16_12-40-47 PM

07-22-16_12-42-08 PM

07-22-16_12-43-32 PM

07-22-16_12-44-39 PM

I think the water slide is a really fun item and it will be great on community lots too! I’d be a great object for a pop-up Fun Day at the park, or for beaches if we get a tropical world (or if you’re using the Tropical Getaway Mod Pack). My niggly complaints are that it would have been nice to have a plain option, because the bright designs are a bit childish, and it would have been nice to have a plain version more suitable for teens or young adults. Also, that it would have been nice if it was an inventory object, to make it usable in the big empty area in Newcrest or the beach area in Windenburg. Other than that, it’s a fun item!

– The bird house

This is possibly my favourite item in the pack! It’s just so sweet! And it would be really nice for elders who enjoy gardening. I had Cinderelli feed the birds and luckily she wasn’t attacketed. But one bird did look quite grumpy and aggressive so she backed off. XD

I would have loved a version that looked more rustic like the decorative birdhouse, and the bird animations are very jumpy! But it’s a nice object anyway and I’m pleased to have it.

07-23-16_9-56-02 PM

07-23-16_9-59-50 PM

bird watching

– The juice tray

This is a little bit like the drinks tray from Spa Day but with a few notable exceptions. Firstly, there is a new mixing and pouring animation which is much nicer than the magical swipe animation. Then there are three brand new drinks choices: lemonade; iced tea; and a citrus drink (I forgot the name). The sim will pour out six drinks onto the tray and leave the jug half full (or half empty depending on your philosophical outlook on life). A nice feature is that you can drag the drinks off the tray in live mode and then fill up the tray for a second time, giving you a total of twelve servings.

07-22-16_2-21-18 PM

07-22-16_2-21-43 PM

07-22-16_2-22-06 PM

07-22-16_2-22-21 PM

07-22-16_2-23-06 PM

And when life gives you lemonade you have to SELL IT!!!

If you have Get to Work you can use the retail system to purchase a small empty lot and set up a little lemonade stand! You can either use vanilla content to make a little stall, or you can grab the converted lemonade stand from TS3 by Oh My Sims! The lemonade can be set for sale! It is a little on the expensive side though, so a refreshing glass of sugared lemon water will not come cheaply to your simmies!

07-23-16_11-07-52 PM

07-24-16_9-18-24 PM

07-24-16_9-22-02 PM

07-24-16_9-24-45 PM

Finally, the wind-chimes are another really nice item. They are customisable, so you can choose what material they are made out of and the length of the bars, which affect the pitch and tone.


I have to admit I wasn’t exactly wowed by the CAS-assets in this pack. They’re just… nice. Usable but nothing too exciting. There are some nice hairstyles, the wavy bob and the dreadlocks are useful, and they have ombre options.

07-19-16_6-50-54 PM

07-19-16_6-50-41 PM

07-19-16_6-52-30 PM

07-19-16_6-51-05 PM

The clothing is usable and good for everyday wear. There are some skinny jeans that tuck into boots, which is a small detail we’ve not had yet, and for skinny jean fans like me, it’s nice to have this! And there are some shorts, shirts, and new t-shirt designs. I do really like the t-shirt with the knot in the front, and it has some nice metallic details on the different designs. I also like the cute little dungarees and would wear these in real life if it had a t-shirt underneath (I’m hoping I can manage to modify this with Sims4Studio). There is also a nice bodysuit with a lace panel in the back which can double up as a swimsuit.

07-19-16_6-34-37 PM

07-19-16_6-40-46 PM

07-19-16_6-59-24 PM

07-19-16_6-59-42 PM

07-19-16_6-59-58 PM

07-19-16_7-02-56 PM

07-19-16_7-03-29 PM

07-19-16_7-03-52 PM

07-19-16_10-07-59 PM

07-19-16_10-08-17 PM

07-19-16_10-08-09 PM

While the items are nice, I can’t help thinking this pack was a bit light in the wardrobe department and it could have benefited from a few more options. Maybe a few accessories or even just some more swatch options to bulk it out a bit.

07-22-16_12-37-12 PM

‘So, what do we think boys?’

The water slide is a lot of fun and it’s nice to have a new activity to do with family and friends. The other gameplay objects are nice to have as well: the bird feeder is sweet; the wind chimes are welcome; and the drinks tray is useful. It’s a great to have a bigger outdoor table that can seat more sims, especially for backyard parties! Most of the furniture and clutter is really pretty and fits in well when combined with existing content. Some of the items are a bit large though, and the items could have had a few muted colour alternatives. The new hair and clothing are nice and useful.

Backyard Stuff is a good pack and I’m happy to have the content in my game. Is it my favourite stuff pack? I’d have to say no. But there’s enough content in there to keep me amused for a while. ^__^

Enjoy! And remember to keep a little birdhouse in your soul!

Cinderelli (sort of) Investigates: Kids’ Room Stuff

As much as I love seeing Cinderelli-sim breaking all the new stuff, I felt like she wasn’t the best sim to review the new stuff pack. Yes, she’s a big kid, but she sadly can’t play with Voidcritters as she is technically an adult. Also, I felt like it would be difficult to show the new CASsets (CAS-assets) using a ghost. >__<

So I grabbed a few of my other Sims to explore the new pack! The family that leaped straight into my mind was The Clausen Family because they have lots of children and would definitely spoil them with the new toys!


06-28-16_6-39-14 PM

ALL the clothing in this pack is for children. Yep, you heard me. Nothing for Young Adults AGAIN!!! Urgh, when will they stop favouring the child age at the expense of all the other age groups? My young adults have literally NOTHING to wear! (Yes, I’m being silly here.) Honestly, it’s refreshing to have a pack focused on the young ones, especially after TS3 where they were often underrepresented. It reminds me of the popular stuff packs we had for TS2, like Family Fun Stuff, and the way that series had a much more generational gameplay focus.

Since the recent patch, we can now mix and match the clothing between genders, which gives us lots of options! This is particularly nice for children. In real-life I recently bought both my children Batman t-shirts, for example. So, you can give all your Sim kids Space-cat t-shirts if you want (and why wouldn’t you? Space-cat = Life).

There are some nice hairstyles in this pack, I chose a pretty long style with a side plait for Lena, and a cute tomboyish style for Kayla. Before I finally settled on the outfits in the screenshot above I had a look through some of the other options. There are a ton of different swatches for the new meshes! And a lot of them have interesting shiny details on them, like the t-shirt below which has pretty sparkly sleeves (can I have this for adults too please?). You have a good selection of patterned or plain options too, which is great! Like the pretty floral jeans, which also come in the plain option above.

06-28-16_6-23-50 PM

06-28-16_6-24-44 PM

06-28-16_6-28-09 PM

The more typically boyish styles have a really nice indie/urban feel and I think they are very trendy, but also appropriate for kids. They come in muted colours which I think gives them more of an older-child feel then brighter primary colours which feel younger (more on this age range later).

06-28-16_6-24-13 PM

06-28-16_6-24-10 PM

06-28-16_6-26-14 PM

06-28-16_6-26-27 PM


The buy mode content for this pack is really nice and useful! I love that they included stickered and plain options on the for the furniture, this means you can use the items like the bookshelves in other rooms. I also like how the two bookshelf styles can be placed together to make a bigger unit. Another thing I really like about this pack is that it has an older-child feel, almost pre-teen with the boy-band t-shirts! The decorations mean you can personalise your child’s bedroom more, to show their individual personalities and interests developing as they approach their teenage years. The base-game stuff for children has a younger feel, and I like that we can visualise the transition period from early childhood to a pre-teen age as our sim children develop their skills.

To show you what I mean, here are Lena and Kayla’s bedrooms before and after they had a makeover with the new content. You can see how they become less generic and more themed to their personalities. Lena is interested in nature and science, and Kayla is sociable and sporty.

06-29-16_10-55-45 PM

06-29-16_11-36-17 PM

06-29-16_11-36-54 PM

06-29-16_11-38-20 PM

06-29-16_10-55-10 PM

06-29-16_11-35-54 PM

06-29-16_11-35-40 PM

06-29-16_11-27-56 PM

I really, really, REALLY like being able to decorate my Sims’ rooms to reflect their interests. So I love decor like the sporty items: the trophies and medals. I’ll use these to decorate the rooms of my teens who love sorts as well! In the Clausen household, my teenager Michelle got to use the pretty photographs with the fairy lights over her desk, as she is interested in photography. Another Sim, Kyra, who loves fashion, will be able to use the Audrey Hepburn style canvasses. So, I like that this decor is adaptable and reflects my Sims interests, not just children but teens and adults too. I hope we get more interest-specific content.

06-29-16_11-45-28 PM


Ok… I LOVE LOVE LOVE the Voidcritters! I’ll admit, I was a teeny bit sceptical at first, but now I FLIPPIN LOVE THIS FEATURE!!! It is just perfect for kids, and really represents a common activity that children do between themselves of collecting and trading some popular toy trend. I love that they added a children’s TV channel and radio station, because again this shows the kids’ interests developing, whether it be a mad obsession with Voidcritters or idolising their favourite pop-star. I like that Voidcritters transition between being a TV-show to a collectable toy and game, because this is what happens with any popular kids’ brand! The one thing I wish they had added was individual Voidcritter pushies or toys, but luckily talented modders are on the case!

There are a few ways of obtaining the Voidcritter cards: you can have your children search for them in hollow logs or trash cans (much to my amusement! I hope they bring back dumpster diving for adults). Or you can nag your parents for permission to order a pack of cards off the interwebs (permission not essential but highly recommended). If you are lucky, you might find a rare foil card!!!

06-28-16_6-45-17 PM

06-28-16_7-13-38 PM

06-28-16_8-22-02 PM

There are 20 types of Voidcritter (plus the additional 20 foil versions) and they all have a unique back-story. They also have an ability class, so choose carefully when entering into battle! I like picking a suitable ‘favourite’ for each child, so they can focus training on their favourite, and decorate their rooms accordingly!




Once you have your Voidcritter cards, you can get gather some friends around and start battling on the gaming station! I really appreciate that they updated the Get Together club system to allow us to create Voidcritter clubs! You can also trade cards with other children, which is best done by clicking the specific card you want to trade (I pull my favourite card out of the inventory first to be safe).



06-28-16_9-41-32 PM

Sadly, the Voidcritter options are only for children, which is a huge shame because I would have loved my childish or geeky teens and adults to collect and battle Voidcritters too. :-/

Fortunately though, the cards look GREAT on shelving, and they can be sold using the retail system. I updated my cinema’s retail area with Voidcritter merch (and other collectable bits and bobs from the pack like the robot decor). This way, I can send my teens there to buy a card occasionally, so they can still collect them, even if they can’t actually play.

I’m pleased to see that modders are already unlocking interactions for other age groups!

06-28-16_11-08-44 PM

06-28-16_11-54-38 PM

06-29-16_12-21-49 AM

Puppet Theatre:

The puppet theatre (yes, I’m spelling that right) is a really adorable item which allows your sim kids to put on a puppet show for their family and friends. It’s quite straightforward to explain really. But it does have some very sweet animations and noises, and I love how sims gather around to watch with interest, even kneeling on the floor if no seats are available, so make sure you pop down a rug!

It will be a nice item to add to parks or libraries, to make those venues more interesting for children. And if you make schools and classrooms for you kids, or run a daycare, it will be a great item for those situations too! I do hope we get active schools and a real theatre added to the game at some point!

06-28-16_9-52-41 PM

06-28-16_10-02-11 PM

All in all, I think this is a great pack! I think you get a LOT of gameplay value out of it, if you enjoy content for children. You also get a huge amount of cas and buy mode items, with a really good variety of swatches. I love that the stuff pack has a very specific theme, and I like that there is content to support individual Sims’ hobbies and interests (more of that please). It would be nice to get a teen or hobby focused pack, something like TS2 Freetime, at some point too. I’d love soccer or basketball, and ballet or gymnastics, for example! More playground equipment for kids would be fab too, especially if teens can also hang around on the swings.

More stuffz:

The great news is that the community has gone crazy for Voidcritters! And there is already a ton of supportive custom content available!

* Voidcritter plushies by PickyPikachu

* Trade Voidcritter for All Ages Mod by Shimrod101

* Voidcritter T-shirts (adult and kids versions available on site) by Strawberry House

* WIP Voidcritter content by Brazen Lotus (watch this space)

* Buyable Voidcritters by Treelife Creations

* Alternate Puppet Theatre and puppets as toys by Sandy at ATS

* Another one to watch is SNW who is creating wallpapers, furnishings and pjs:

Cinderelli Investigates: Monstahs Under Beds!

06-23-16_10-02-56 PM

A recent patch added a new feature to The Sims 4 base game: monsters under the beds! Well, technically we had a similar feature in TS3 where children would get paranoid about monsters under the beds and if you looked closely you might see a pair of red glowing eyes. In The Sims 4 the monsters are a bit more curious, and you might find them reaching out a tentacle or two as they try to explore this strange new environment (what will they feed on instead of dust mites, I don’t know, but those ankles sure look tasty!).

If you don’t want your beloved Sim children to be awoken mid-dream by nocturnal bed octopuses (nope, not octopi, I checked), then you can deter or prevent them entirely! Either have an adult spray the room with ‘Monster Repellent’, or install the ‘Coolala, The Defender Wall Light’ which tentacled bed monsters are terrified of, apparently.

Well, I just had to test this out! And since Parker Mouse is an evil ghost child, he seemed like he’d be brave enough for the task! Ummm… he wasn’t. XD

06-23-16_10-03-02 PM

It took a little while for the monster to appear. It didn’t show up on the first night. But on the second night Parker woke up autonomously and started freaking out. A notification helpfully informed me that he’d spotted the monster!


Nope! My little Parker Mouse is not the type to be scared of a few tentacles! These semi-transparent supernatural minorities really should stick together! So I directed him to make friends with the besuckered beast. Several times. To no avail. The monster was stubbornly determined to be anti-social.

06-23-16_10-04-32 PM

monstah says no

Well… I might as well let events play themselves out then!

I left Parker to his autonomy. He screamed a bit then ran around the lot waking up all the grown ups. First he woke up Cinderelli-sim, but she’s not very functional if woken up early without coffee so she wandered off to the bathroom in confusion. So Parker ran outside to the tent and shouted until Alan the Clown appeared to save the day! Like a hero he strode into the house and taught that monster a lesson with a good repellent spray to the suckers (well, he assumed that’s what he was spraying but it was hard to tell as only children and childish sims can see the monster)! As Alan strode off to finish his sleep, Parker breathed a big sigh of relief!

One day he’d befriend that monster and together they would rule the WOOOOOORLD!!!

One day… O__o

06-23-16_10-09-33 PM

06-23-16_10-10-04 PM

06-23-16_10-10-45 PM

06-23-16_10-11-06 PM

06-23-16_10-11-43 PM

06-23-16_10-11-53 PM

06-23-16_10-12-32 PM

06-23-16_10-13-27 PM

06-23-16_10-14-27 PM

It’s a nice little feature to have in a patch, and it adds some welcome interactions between children and grown-ups. I like the monster repellent spray, it’s a funny touch. And I like the way children react by running to ask a grown up for help. The night light is a great addition for players who would rather not have the feature, because it stops the monster appearing. It’s a bit large, but can be hidden behind other objects using the ‘bb.moveobjects on’ cheat to make it less conspicuous if it doesn’t match the decor.

Cinderelli Investigates: Owning a Restaurant

06-07-16_10-47-31 PM

Cinderelli, Cinderelli,
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.

06-07-16_10-52-32 PM

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.

06-07-16_10-52-11 PM

06-07-16_10-52-54 PM

06-07-16_10-53-10 PM

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.

06-07-16_10-53-34 PM

06-07-16_10-54-03 PM

06-07-16_10-55-35 PM

06-07-16_10-56-27 PM

06-07-16_10-57-34 PM

06-07-16_10-57-50 PM

06-07-16_10-58-51 PM

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!

06-07-16_10-59-25 PM

06-07-16_11-00-23 PM

06-07-16_11-04-47 PM

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.

06-07-16_11-04-55 PM

06-07-16_11-07-02 PM

06-07-16_11-07-30 PM

06-07-16_11-09-29 PM

06-07-16_11-09-40 PM

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! XD

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.

06-07-16_11-03-00 PM

06-07-16_11-11-02 PM

06-07-16_11-12-21 PM

06-07-16_11-13-03 PM

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.

06-07-16_11-14-34 PM

06-07-16_11-15-50 PM

06-07-16_11-18-01 PM

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!

06-07-16_11-23-33 PM

06-07-16_11-26-09 PM

06-07-16_11-26-37 PM

06-07-16_11-27-04 PM

06-07-16_11-28-30 PM

06-07-16_11-30-10 PM

06-07-16_11-30-29 PM

06-07-16_11-30-43 PM

Create-a-Sim Assets

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!

06-07-16_7-31-00 PM

06-07-16_7-31-11 PM

06-07-16_8-33-00 PM

06-07-16_8-33-48 PM

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).

06-07-16_8-30-42 PM

06-07-16_8-40-48 PM

06-07-16_8-50-56 PM

06-07-16_8-52-42 PM

06-07-16_8-55-28 PM

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! XD

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.

Cinderelli Investigates: Clowning Around

04-25-16_9-03-28 PM

*sings badly* TRAGEDY!!! When you see a clown and you start to frown it’s TRAGEDY!!! When you start to cry and you don’t know why, it’s hard to bare, and no one can help you, you’d better beware!

That’s right, that lovable fan favourite is back: the Tragic Clown! We all loved him so much in TS1 that the thoughtful gurus decided he needed to make a comeback in TS4! We’re so happy and thankful, right? ….RIGHT???

04-25-16_9-09-05 PM

Well… maybe ‘happy’ isn’t quite the appropriate word to use. Wearing the tragic clown clothing actually makes your sim desperately unhappy. And it doesn’t just affect the wearer. All the sims around the tragic sim will also be overwhelmed with sadness. Poor Parker!

04-25-16_9-13-56 PM


At first, I have to admit, I was not amused to hear this sim was making a comeback. The Tragic Clown really irritated me in TS1! Some players have found his incessant crying annoying, and his self-loathing to be really quite upsetting. The Tragic Clown really brings down the mood and it’s understandable that some people want to avoid him.

(Video credit: SimsVip)

I actually considered just… not patching. Nope. Not doing it! I’ll stick with the egg hunt and growfruit thank you very much! But then… funnily enough… the Tragic Clown started to appeal to me. I guess it appealed to me in a sentimental way… why is the poor clown so sad? Why can’t he be cheered up? Is he suffering from depression?

This made me want to accept the clown and his mopey ways. He can’t help being sad. Like how people with depression in real life can be snappy and emotional, this clown is suffering in the same way, and needs our love and support. Even when he seems to reject it. ❤

And so… it became Cinderelli-sim's mission to, not cheer up the clown, but to befriend him in her own charming and… slightly annoying… fashion. I had Cinderelli-sim look at the tragic clown painting and summon one of these mopey wanderers.

04-25-16_9-12-03 PM

04-25-16_9-12-40 PM

The first clown that appeared was too smart to stick around to be Cinderelli-sims guinea-pig and immediately vanished into thin air. Okaysies. Maybe it was time for Cinderelli to take off that clown suit?

Attempt number 2 produced a very quirky looking character. I’m not sure why he wasn’t wearing the suit and make-up, but he did have the clown hair, and I kind of liked his unusual look. Maybe this clown was trying to dress ‘normally’ to fit in? Maybe if he acted happy, he would feel happy?

04-25-16_10-15-44 PM

So, I set about befriending this hapless soul. I knew better than to try the obvious ‘cheer up’ interactions (those never worked well in TS1) but I aimed at getting to know his interests and talking about those. Sadly, everytime I had a small amount of success and started to build up the relationship bar, one of the pair would put their foot in their mouth and the relationship would take a nose-dive. *sigh*

04-25-16_10-16-23 PM

04-25-16_10-20-42 PM

Cinderelli-sim is not the sort to give up easily when she has set her mind to something! And I really was starting to like this hopeless, awkward character. So it was time for Plan B! I took advantage of the Get Together club system to start a clown club! I set the club rules to encourage friendly and cheerful behaviours and invited the clown, Alan, back to the house. It took a while to convince him to join the club, but eventually the relationship bar was high enough for him to accept. Once he joined Cinderelli’s Happy Clown Cult… *cough*… I mean Club, it didn’t take long to build up their relationship and Alan the Clown really seemed to cheer up! Yippie!

04-25-16_10-39-04 PM

04-25-16_10-39-39 PM

04-25-16_10-39-10 PM


I felt like Alan was now rehabilitated, I really like the shape of his face, so Cinderelli asked him to move in! He’s evil, like Parker, so I figured they would get along well and maybe Alan could act as a role model for the young ghost-child. However, while Cinderelli accepts their evil traits, she wants them to focus on their more positive abilities! Alan is creative, and since he clearly likes music, she thinks he should focus on his DJ and comedy skills. He has now joined the entertainer career! Also, for those who want to know how Parker is getting along, while I was completing the growfruit challenge, Parker has reached level 10 with his violin lessons, and he is an A student! When we get the kids’ themed stuff pack, I’m going to treat him to some new goodies as a reward.

04-25-16_10-40-49 PM

04-25-16_10-44-14 PM

Cinderelli Investigates: Growthfruit

03-22-16_11-34-48 PM

So, the Sims team decided to revive the Spring Easter Egg Hunt but threw in an extra (eggstra?) twist. We now have an optional challenge of hunting down a new NPC at the community gardens in Oasis Springs or Willow Creek. Jasmine Holiday will give us a single pack of a new ingredient/plant called ‘growthfruit’ and a pack of fertiliser, she then asks you to return once you have grown 20 of the fruit for a special reward. So, I decided to send Cinderelli-sim over to check this out…

03-22-16_10-16-27 PM

The initial excitement of having a ghost protégé had worn off and Cinderelli was feeling nervous about her new role as fairy ghost-mother. What was she meant to do with this kid? She didn’t know the first thing about parenting! INTERNAL PANIC!!! Telling the sprog to go and do his homework seemed like the sort of thing a ‘good parent’ would do and a good way of distracting him while she thought about what to do next. FOOD! Kids need food. What kind of food do kids like? Chocolate brownies!!! She might be a terrible cook, but she can do the baking thing!

03-22-16_10-19-38 PM

03-22-16_10-19-53 PM

03-22-16_10-21-34 PM

03-22-16_10-22-18 PM

Sprog seemed impressed! Cnderelli patted herself on the back for being an awesome parent and chatted to Parker while they ate. He seemed to like her bad impressions and cheesy jokes. However, Cinderelli-sim was still feeling a little concerned. Suddenly the kid jumped up and took his plate to the bathroom. Cinderelli followed him curiously and happily found he was washing his plate! Maybe having this kid around could be a good thing, Cinderelli thought as she absent-mindedly dumped her own plate on the hall table. XD

03-22-16_10-22-45 PM

03-22-16_10-24-39 PM

03-22-16_10-25-05 PM

Rosy-fingered Dawn appeared and the new friends went to the community garden at Willow Creek to look for the new NPC. It took a few minutes of awkward standing around before Jasmine Holiday appeared. Cinderelli went over to greet her and they walked together. Jasmine’s expression made me laugh, like she thought Cinderelli-sim was bonkers [she is].

03-22-16_10-46-37 PM

03-22-16_10-46-54 PM

03-22-16_10-47-38 PM

And… this is where it went a bit wrong for me. I have to admit I really like having this special NPC, and I like the new fruit, and the challenges! Only… I really dislike that this is timed. I had Cinderelli-sim plant the seed and she couldn’t use the special fertiliser to make it grow faster (maybe she needs a higher gardening skill?). So I sent her to look around for wild growthfruit (I’d heard that was a thing but sadly couldn’t find any).

[It did make me laugh that she had this branch in her face as she collected apples]

03-22-16_10-53-52 PM

So then I had to pass the time waiting for the fruit to grow. This normally wouldn’t be an issue for me. I’d plant the seeds and get on with playing my normal game. But the fact that it is a timed challenge, and the fact that with 2 sick kids and a ton of coursework I’m very short of time at the moment, meant that I felt very rushed. I had Cinderelli paint to pass the time, and was jumping to speed 3 while Parker was at school. I never use speed 3 usually and I found that I really wasn’t enjoying the game, it’s not the way I play. I felt like I was just trying to tick boxes and I wasn’t engaged with the game or my sims’ lives. You can tell, as a result I have hardly any screenshots.

Finally the tree grew and gave me 6 fruit. I replanted one and saved the rest for the challenge. By this point it was late and I’d ran out of time to play. Since my game time is precious, will I be completing this challenge? Probably not. I felt rushed and didn’t enjoy it. If this wasn’t timed, I would have really enjoyed this feature. But now I feel like I’m going to miss out. If not on the content (which I believe will be in debug), on the gameplay.

I’d be happier if they kept Jasmine in the game all year round, and just updated her with the new content each season. So, I’d leave her in the community garden with her growthfruit. Then next time there is a challenge, like Spooky Day, maybe she’d move location to a park and offer a trick or treat themed challenge as well. This way, the content and challenges remain in game for those of us who don’t play seasonally, or who are short on time while the challenges are on. And you still get the new content and holiday-themed challenges.

Anyhoo, I like how the tree glows. It’d be nice if the fruit glowed too. And Cinderelli-sim and Parker seem to be getting along well, Parker improved his grade at school. Plus, Cinderelli made enough money from selling her paintings to be able to buy a computer. She wrote a kid’s story: Caspian the Evil Ghost, a story about a misunderstood ghost child who only wanted to make friends. She thought it would help Parker be able to talk about his feelings about his ghostly condition, and understand that even though the game gave him an evil trait, that he is not a ‘bad’ kid and he can still make friends and have a good life. He seemed really pleased. ^__^

03-22-16_11-40-23 PM

03-22-16_11-42-28 PM