Become the ultimate neighborhood puppet master in the next Sims 4 update

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There’s really nothing new about playing The Sims 4 as a puppet master, manipulating and ruining other characters’ lives. But generally, if you really want to mess with your neighbors’ lives, you need to roll up your sleeves and play as those characters. Why can’t there be an easier way for them to make people’s decisions?

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With a feature coming to The Sims 4 on November 30th. Without switching characters you’ll be able to influence Sims you’re not actively playing, which EA calls “Neighborhood Stories,” but in the real world we call “interfering in the lives of others.”

Want Bob and Elijah Pancakes to have a baby and then part ways? Right now you have to take care of their household for making such rash life decisions for them. With Neighborhood Stories, you’ll be able to accomplish this just by talking to them. Essentially, the non-player characters (NPCs) in The Sims 4 will experience life decisions just as you would with your main characters. Should they have kids? Should they romance the other Sim? Should they accept a promotion at their job? break up with their partner?


You will be able to serve as an advisor to such decisions and steer them in the direction you desire. You too will be able to plant the seeds of those decisions in their mind, just like Inception. Talk trash to one Sim in front of the other, and their relationship will be ruined. Push two Sims into a relationship with each other, just because you can. Break up a happy couple. Convince an unemployed Sim to get an already bad job. You will really be able to peep into people’s private business. Remember that moment I wasted by making santa go to my dirty house and pick up a pack of sick raccoons, Now I will be able to ruin Santa’s life by chatting with him or his friends.

This is similar to a feature in The Sims 3 called Story Progression, which lets the NPC Sims make decisions such as moving away, getting married, or having children, thus making your neighborhood more dynamic and unpredictable (note: not everyone is in this situation). Doesn’t like the convenience) ) The difference here with Neighborhood Stories is that your neighbors won’t have nearly as much agency. If an NPC experiences a life decision, they will call your Sim and ask what they should do before actually doing anything. You will be able to tell them yes, no or let them decide for themselves.

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It looks like EA is going very carefully around this update, perhaps not wanting to completely upstage the player neighborhood by letting all the neighborhood randos do their job. It’s an attempt to make the rest of the neighborhood more dynamic, but not so dynamic that you’re ultimately not making all-for-all choices.

And your intervention may not always be successful, either, because it will depend on how strong your relationship is with the characters you’re trying to manipulate, and how each character feels about that. Feels, for which you are trying to nudge them. For example, if a character hates kids, you probably won’t be able to talk to them about raising ten kids just to laugh. And if you suggest to Bob the pancakes that he should dump Elijah, and he Really Don’t want to, it might just make him mad at you.

Neighborhood Stories will also come with two new ambitions. One is called Villainous Valentine and will reward players for “destroying their own and the love lives of other Sims.” Neighborhood Confident is for those who want to make a more positive impact on others. I’m pretty sure I know which one I would choose. You can read more about the stories in The Sims 4 Neighborhood official site,

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