Content of the article: "Expansion pack idea based around wealth."
(Note: This is a long read and I apologize that there is no TLDR, but the list in the intro might serve you well for such needs.)
It has been observed many times that once a sims family gets rich, there is not much to spend that money on. It has also been observed that having lots of money in the Sims 4 makes things easy. My idea for a pack addresses both these problems to some extent.
The pack would probably be called something like Get Wealthy and is all about expanding the systems around simoleons and adding ways to gain, spend, and even lose them. Some of theses systems already exist in the game in some way, sometime multiple ways, but this pack would hopefully give them more depth. These systems are:
- Loans & Mortgages
- The Lottery
- Real Estate
- The Stock Market
- Private and Boarding Schools
- Law & Crime
This maybe be a lot, more akin to a Sims 3 expansion, but this is a hypothetical expansion and some of these ideas probably will never grace the series proper outside of mods, so lets just go with it
I will also go into the CAS item, Build item, traits and such as well, after discussing the aforementioned systems.
Part 1: Loans & Mortgages
Now loans already exist in the game to some extent. If your sim is high enough level in charisma, they can ask people to borrow money, and Discover University added student loans. Here, general loans for all that come in three flavours, for simplicities sake: mortgages, bank loans, and
loan sharks insta-simoleons loans.
Let’s start with mortgages, as this can be among the first to thing see in game. After starting a new game, when a player is choosing a place to live, they may take out a mortgage to afford a house more expensive than the standard starter homes. Players sims still start with the standard 2X,000 to purchase a home, but will have the option to take out a mortgage of up to 80% of the homes value as well. Mortgages will also be available when moving in Live Mode or when moving in a family from World Management later.
When it comes to paying off your Mortgage, payments are always made when paying bill and are a set amount, but the player will have the option of paying off more of it whenever.
As to the other loans, when a sim is strapped for simoleons, they will have an option to take out two types of loan, both of which come with interest. The bank loan is generally the safer loan, but it takes time for your sim to get it, and there is a chance they will not be approved. Insta-simoleon loans are, as the name implies, instantaneous and your sim does not have to worry about being approved. They will have to worry however about interest, as these loans have much higher, almost criminal, interest.
Players can choose to auto pay their loans with their, or pay as they please. If they do not pay their loans, they will be hounded on their phone, and eventually, the repo-man will arrive and do their thing.
If players have Get Famous, the reputation system will affect and be affected by loans. If a sim has a good or greater reputation, they will find it easier to be approved for loans, with the inverse happening for sims with bad or worse reputations. Sims who do not pay off their loans will also find that their reputation will plummet.
Part 2: The Lottery
Now the lottery already exists in Seasons, as a rare holiday. Here, it would be a weekly thing, with various amounts of money up for grabs. Sims would be able to purchase multiple tickets to increase their odds of winning, and it would be possible for no one to win, causing the next week’s jackpot to be even greater.
Part 3: Real Estate.
Now we already have some real estate functionality between Get to Work & Dine Out, but this would expand those systems to include all lots and add some functionality from the Sims 3.
Similar to the Sims 3, lots would have a rank dependent on how much they are worth, with the more they are worth, the higher the rank, and the higher the rank, the more money the player makes. Like Sims 3, players would be able to make money of their holdings without actively managing them, but here they will only get a median amount of money, while those who actively participate in running their businesses will have a chance of making more money, or potentially less.
Sims would also be able to purchase additional homes and vacation homes and would be able to rent them out.
Part 4: The Stock Market
Sims would have the option to invest their money on the stock market, as well as sell their stocks. Companies on the market will not be in-game businesses, such as Dine Out restaurants, but more abstract along the lines of things like charities or causes from the political career are handled.
Sims would be able to make it big, dabble in insider trading (which ties into a system down below), or potentially lose it all and go broke.
When it comes to the rising and falling of stocks, I see three options: random, manipulated through chance cards, or through a combination of the two.
Integrating with the base game, sims in the investor career would have a bonus when dealing with the market.
When it comes to going broke through the market, I see two possibilities, one is you choose poorly and lose all your money, the other being that the sim who manages your portfolio embezzles from you.
The stock market could be a bit deeper, but as I am not expert in this field, so I’ll leave it here for now.
Part 5: Private & Boarding Schools
Returning from the Sims 2 & 3 respectively, the player would have the option to send their children and teens to a private or a boarding school instead of public school, for a price of course. Sims also would not be immediately accepted into one of these schools either, as they would need to pas a test and/or schmooze up to the headmaster in order to attend. That said, attending one would be well worth it for your sims, in theory.
Private schools function like standard schools, in that sims live at home, but unlike standard schools, private school students have a uniform (more on this in the CAS section), and sims gain skills while attending classes.
Boarding schools function in a similar matter to private, but like the Sims 3, the sims would be sent away to attend and the player would not have to worry about their needs. Unlike Sims 3 though, sims mat return home on weekends, or on holidays if Seasons is installed, at the player’s discretion. Unlike Sims 3, Sims at boarding school would still get chance cards.
Like many things in the Sims 4, there would not be only one option for private and one option for boarding, but multiple schools. Both would get an option for an academic focused school and an art-based school, while the boarding school would also get the option of a military school. In the case of the later, a sim maybe sent there if they are failing in school.
Which school your sims attend would determine what skills they gain when attending class, with the academic school giving skills like mental, logic, charisma, etc., while the arts school would give skills like creativity, painting, musical instruments, etc. The military school probably gives motor and fitness, not quite sure here.
Chance cards for both private and boarding schools would be more involved than the ones for standard school. These cards might see your sim immediately go up or down in grades, make new friends or enemies, gain a new skill, or even be kicked out of the school. Boarding schools would also have cards that could change the traits of sims attending. For instance, a slob sim attending an academic boarding school could have that trait be changed into a snob trait, or a lazy sim attending a military school could have that become active depending on the player’s choice.
For graduating from one of theses schools, sims would gain a trait that functions similar to the child’s gifted traits, in that it makes them learn skills associated with their school faster. They would also gain a hidden trait similar to the one granted by normal school, except an A would start your sim at Level 5 of their career, B at 4, and so on (for careers that have the branch choice, they would get it the second they joined if they joined at or above the level it is given).
Obviously, sims can be pulled from private and boarding schools at any time, and as mentioned earlier, they can be kicked out. Being kicked out should probably give your sim a trait that makes getting careers and/or making friends harder, but that might be a bit much.
As to pack integration, those with Discover University would find it even easier to get accepted to university if their sim is an alumnus of one of these schools. As to Get Famous, celebrities will find it easier to get their children in to these schools, and sims will get reputation for attending, and will lose reputation for being kicked out. Parenthood’s values would also be affected by which school you attend. For instance, academic students might get a boost to responsibility and manners, but find empathy harder.
Part 6: Law and Crime
First and foremost, NPC cops and burglars, as well as burglar alarms, would be added to the game, probably in the theoretical patch that goes with this theoretical pack. Both would function al they classically have, and Sims could get in trouble for calling the cops for no reason, similar to how firefighters are handled. Basic functions would be in the patch, but there would be more integration with the pack.
Now, lets discuss crime. All jobs, or at least base game jobs and career that come with this pack, would gain new chance cards that would allow the sim to commit crimes for money, and existing crime card would be modified to function similarly. Cards could be things like the painter can launder money through their paintings, or the businessman can embezzle simoleons from their company. Of course, all these crimes would fit the teen rating (no murder). These cards would generally have three outcomes: success, failure, and busted. Success obviously means you succeed in committing the crime, failure means you failed but no one is the wiser, and busted means you fail and you were caught. This leads to the next part of the system.
Every action from across all the packs that could be illegal has a chance of getting you arrested. New illegal action introduced would include insider trading, tax evasion, and creating your own scam charity. This would integrate with the NPC cops in that if you are caught, whether from a chance card, someone catches your kleptomaniac sim stealing stuff, or the the new crimes, the cops would be called on you and take you away.
Depending on the crime, different outcomes would happen. Sometimes your sim would just be fined, sometime they might spend a little time in jail (like in the Sims 3), sometimes they would have to go to court and defend themselves. They might even be sent to prison.
When it comes to the court, it would be a rabbit hole. The greater the crime, the tougher it would be to be found innocent. Charisma would help in defending your sim, and the greater your sim’s charisma, the better they would defend themselves. You could also have them try to bribe the judge and jury if they have money, but that would be extreme risky, and if it fails, it will make things worse. As to pack integration with this feature, reputation would help or hinder your sim’s prospects, and being a celebrity could also make it easy for the charges to be dropped. If they are found guilty though, they loss a lot of reputation, especially for a celebrity. If one has Discover University, a lawyer could be hired from that pack to defend them, or if your sim is one, it would increase their chances of being declared innocent.
Sims would also be capable of suing other sims for wrongdoing or defamation, whether its true or not. Active sims might also be sued and have to defend themselves in court.
Like crime cases, having good charisma would help, and if one has Discover university, having someone in the law career helping you. It will cost money to sue someone, and depending on how things go, you might spend more money on your case than you get back if you win, or you might win big and the other party will have to pay your court costs. If you lose, the inverse might happen. Cases might also have a small chance of being dismissed.
Now, as to prison, if your sim is sent here, it functions quite similar to boarding schools. Your sim is sent away, and you are unable to control them for however long their prison sentence is. Prison sentences would be in weeks, and it would be possible to even get a life sentence. In a case such as this, the player will have an option to kick that sim out of the house, and they will become a hidden sim.
Chance cards with prisons would be stuff like lowering your sentence, parole, making friends with fellow prisoners, making enemies, and of course, prison escapes. In the case of the later, how successful your attempts would be dependent on your skills and the relationships you forged in prison, as well as some rng.
Part 7: Inheritance
When it comes to inheritance, I see it potentially working two ways. In the first manner, when the last sim in a house dies, their belongs and house will be sold off and their money will be divided among family & good friends. Family member with a negative relation to the deceased would be likely to get nothing, except maybe an angry or sad moodlet that lasts a couple days over the situation.
The second way is a bit more involved. Sims of young adult or older could write a will. In this will, they would be capable of selecting a few sims and saying how much of their wealth goes to them. They maybe even capable of saying this sim gets a certain object(s), which would be added to the family inventory of that sim. Sims would be able to alter their will at any time, and other sims could attempt to alter another sim’s will via persuading them to, or sims with high mischief could attempt to secretly alter the will themselves.
This second option would only be available to active sims, with non-played sims instead only getting the first option. Players do not have to have their sim write a will, and if they die without writing one, their assets remain with their family, or if they are the last member of their household, option 1 occurs.
With the will system, there is potential for the deceased sim to give away all their simoleons to a sim outside the active family, leaving the family broke. This though would only be by player direction.
Part 8: Careers
A lot of the careers that would go well with this pack already exist in the game, but it would not be an expansion without at least a few new careers. In this pack. There would be two careers: A producer and
scam artist Ponzi pusher an mlm seller. There could also be a stock broker options, but not quite sure how it would work, and it could step on the toes of the investor branch of the business career.
The producer would be a semi-active job, branching into either film/tv or music. Part of leveling this job up would require the player to invest certain amounts of their simoleons that they made back into their career; with the chance they might not make it back.
The mlm seller would be a freelancer career, and include such things as trying to sell your useless crap, trying to get people to join your Ponzi scheme, etc. Sims in this career would also get the option to talk to other sims about essential oils and stuff like that.
Part 9: The World
With few exceptions, Sim's expansion packs should always come with worlds. The world I’m picturing would be inspired by New York. It would be similar to San Myshuno, in that most properties would be apartments, though there would be proportional more standard lots than San Myshuno.
This world would be divided between four neighbourhoods, an uptown section with an art-deco style to building shells, a poor downtown section inspired by the like of Hells Kitchen in the 70s, a more middle-class area inspired by Queens, and a higher end area inspired by Nassau County, Long Island.
The base price for all lots and apartments in this world would be more expensive than elsewhere, and the weekly bills and rend would be as well. Some of the most expensive lots, however, could come with traits that granted bonuses to earning money or at one’s career. Think tiny home bonuses, but based around decadence and opulence.
Part 10: CAS Items
This pack would be primarily divided between two fashion ideas: the stuff one would expect someone from Wall Street to wear, and the stuff you would expect a person involved in an mlm to.
The Wall Street stuff would include stuff like high-class trench coats for both genders, better suit options for women, a dress shirt with tie and vest for men, and things of a similar style. The MLM fashion would include a lot of tasteless print dresses and leggings.
Children and toddlers would also get new clothing, with a focus around formal wear.
As stated above, to go along with the private/boarding school system, there would school uniforms for both children and teen+ sims. The different schools might have different uniforms, with the academic school having the more classic school uniform look, the artistic one having something that fits that more, and the military school having something akin to a soldier’s uniform. These uniforms would be locked until a sim attended the matching school.
School uniforms would also come with moodlets. Depending on the sim’s traits, they might get a moodlet that implies they enjoy wearing their uniform, or that they are embarrassed or hate it, Players with Parenthood might find that their sim going through the rebellious phase may refuse to wear it.
Hair wise, there would be a focus on male haircuts for once, especially focusing on haircuts for older sims. Such hair would include styles like Comb-overs and that ugly, bald ponytail, as well as some nicer, business haircuts. For female haircuts, I’m not sure, except there would be the most Karen haircut to ever demand to speak to the manager.
Facial hair wise, a horse shoe moustache, shorter non-muttonchop side burns, and muttonchop’s that combine with the moustache, leaving the chin bare would be available.
Part 11: Traits and Aspirations
Aspiration wise, there would be an aspiration based around getting rich from the stock market and a gold digger and/or a black widow/blue beard one akin to the gold digger lifetime wish from 3.
Trait wise, we already have a lot of traits that would work here (snob, materialistic), so instead of those, three of the traits that would be added would be absent-minded, fool, and cutthroat.
The absent-minded trait would return from 3, and make it hard for your sims to concentrate on what they are doing, sometime even canceling the action, and might randomly get a dazed moodlet. The fool trait, meanwhile, is meant to be a challenging trait, and will make it harder for them to gain experience for skills, make it harder to rise in careers, and they would more prone to lose money on the stock market. The Cutthroat trait would focus on making money through devious means easier, whether through the stock market, or from conning fellow sims.
Part 12: Build Mode
As I am not a good builder, nor well versed in architecture, I am not going to focus too much on the exact styles of objects, merely a general idea. Here, Build Mode objects would be divided between expensive, high end stuff, and kitschy junk. The high-end stuff, like statues and art, would actually be expensive, making it hard for normal sims to purchase them. Some might even be as expensive as a starter home
A new item introduced would be a small safe. This would be like the money vault form Get famous, in that you can store money here, but you would also be able to store your will, and use it to hide money and documents that would incriminate you.
I highly doubt that EA/Maxis would ever consider half of these ideas, but I must admit, it was quite fun brainstorming this theoretical pack and I think they would be fun additions nonetheless. I do not think they would fix the inherent problems with the game, but I do think they would add some needed depth. I hope you enjoyed yourself reading this small essay and would love to hear your thoughts and idea’s in the comments.
Have a good day and happy simming!
- The disconnect between EA and consumers has gone too far
- EA: “Make your own story!”
- Does anyone else wish financial struggles were a much bigger part of the game?
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