The Sims 4 Creator’s Camp: Modding Masterclass

We attended a Sims 4 Modding Masterclass during Creator’s Camp, where Darren Gyles and Lyndsay Pearson gave us some information on the current and future plans for modding in The Sims 4. 

Modding: What it means in The Sims 4

Everything the community makes is astounding to us, super inspiring, and it is interesting to see what people come up with. Please continue doing it as we want to be able to encourage and foster that creativity because it’s so important to what The Sims means to everyone.
We cannot officially support and screen everything that comes out, so it is very important to us that we set up a good foundation that can help the community manage what they’re creating, and communicate to other people how to responsibly get involved in the modding and creating community.

What to expect in The Sims 4

• Directory for Mods in the user data folder.

• Custom Content Technology Document with data formats that will help creators avoid conflict with what has been done in the game.  This document will be expanded on as we go along.

• Dedicated Modding Section section on The Sims 4 Official Forums for feedback, discussion, and issues.

• Game options panel contains section for mods. (Script and Non-Script)

Q&A Session

• H Gender species and sub-types included in the data format with some of them defined

• Sims 4 coding written in Python

• Package files will not attach to creations when uploaded

• The .ini file will be available to everyone just like it is in The Sims 3


32 Comments Were Written on This Topic!
  1. Lucian says:

    Information overload – I;m afraid i will get fired if you keep posting info

  2. Jakkal says:

    in short: modding still a thing, Python language, easier mod-choose in-game.

  3. bludhound says:

    How’s the scripting performance like? I’m kindda worried as I always have the impression that Python code runs slower than .NET code (which is used in Sims 3).

    1. mmoblitz says:

      I’m not sure about performance, but I know it has more limitations.

      1. cryptotoad0 says:

        The entirety of EVE online was developed in python. I think it’ll be fine.

        1. Edward Vella says:

          Python is a cpu intensive programming language, but there are packages to use the GPU, but since ive been using it, my programs that i ported from .NET to python seemto use less memory which is good.

        2. mmoblitz says:

          How many mods do we see for eve-online?

          1. Srikandi says:

            Eve is an MMO :p If there are mods, they are UI mods only.

            BTW, I gather that TS4 uses Flash for the UI, which means THAT should be easy to mod ;)

      2. Joseph says:

        What limitations do you believe a dynamically typed python has compared to statically typed C#?

        1. Ian says:

          I wonder too. It might be a little slower than stuff like C# and C and C++ but that is solved with Cython, so not even an issue.

    2. Ahmed says:

      What CPU intensive task do you imagine doing in a mod? I don’t think 3d rendering, raw mathematical calculations, etc. are among the things that people usually do in mods. (and those things can still be done in a performant way with Python)

      Don’t worry :) Many of us use Python for maths, machine learning, data processing… and I’m sure you won’t notice any performance difference in mods. (but you will surely notice how easy it is to use and test compared to using C# with .NET)

  4. denkert says:

    Ooh, time for me to brush off those Python skills. =) (aka actually gain them……..)

  5. waytoomanyUIDs says:

    Ooh, stuff won’t attach to an uploaded sim or house? That’s the best news about Sims 4 I’ve heard. I know downloading all the custom stuff will be a schlep, but I’d rather do that than run Custard on everything I download.

    1. I hope that does prove to be right. I never used the exchange anymore after I downloaded a Sims with a dress that corrupted my whole game and made me loose the first family I ever played in Sims 3.

      1. Cody says:

        This made me happy :)! I hope it proves to be true, it would make downloading a much better experience.

      2. wolfsilveroak says:

        Yeah, I had that happen in Sims2. It was a pain to have to take everything out and go item by item to figure out what item was causing the issues.}:/

        Hence I never downloaded anything from the TS3 exchange that wasn’t SimGuru made.

    2. Alourra says:

      It’s one of my favorite things too. I know people love CC, but I like to choose what goes in my game, which turns out is very very little. Now that there won’t be any CC and I don’t have to leave the game, I think I’ll actually use the gallery.

  6. SimsForever15 says:

    No more worrying about corrupt/bad downloads on the Gallery due to CC? Awesome!

  7. vitani says:

    Oi vey people it says .package files will not upload. Not the other one which is probably called .sims4pack. Sims 3 had an issue where BOTH could upload which is why some people would have CC in their game even after going through their launcher and not finding it.

    I’m really glad they’re becoming so mod-friendly. Hopefully now people won’t be so afraid of them.

    1. vitani says:

      Just in case anyone has this issue and is wondering how to fix it, you’ll have to check out your SavedSims folder. Anything unusually large in size has .package CC attached to it.

    2. I’m not sure that even exists anymore. The .sims3pack-files were kind of their way of trying to limit CC and mods before they finally accepted that it’s not possible and built in a mods-folder via patch. As they’ve build in a mods-folder from the get-go now, I wouldn’t be surprised if there wouldn’t be any .sims4pack-files.
      That’s assuming that the store will be replaced be Origin or an in-game store, of course.
      I really am hoping that Sims 4 won’t have a launcher anymore and everything will just be managed directly in the game or via Origin. Maxis really does have a long history of terribly programmed launchers that take ages to load and tend to completely freeze the computer.

  8. Srikandi says:

    … if it was their intention to be more mod friendly, why didn’t they invite any MODDERS to their camp? I mean technical modders, tool developers, and scripters, not CC creators :p They’ve been plenty friendly historically with the artists, but without the technical people none of the artists would be able to make a thing.

    And, if it’s their intention to release technical docs with formats, it’s already too late — should have them now :p Why wait?

    As for the Gallery, the state of things right now is — you can upload a sim with CC, and the thumbnail will show the sim WITH THE CC, but the downloader will get the sim with the CC stripped out. Which would be fine if there was a place to indicate that the thumbnail includes CC, what CC the sim is wearing in the thumbnail, and where it can be downloaded… but there really isn’t (just a Tweet-length description field). That is really not a good solution to the problem, although my guess is it will just lead to everybody avoiding the Gallery and getting their content from other sites… just like today :p

    I should not complain I guess… the fact that they’re going to be releasing any documentation at all is a big step forward ;) They’re not demonstrating a real understanding of the modding community by how they went about it, though.

    1. I think not inviting any modders has to do with legal issues. EA’s lawyers and the other people who are in charge are not that kind of people who can be toyed with. They did say that there are quite a few limitations as to how much they are allowed to support modders.

      1. MItch says:

        Honey they didn’t invite modders because they are too smart to fall for the usual EA BS. Last thing they want is to be asked questions of substance and actually have to be accountable.

        1. Bloody hell… -_-
          I won’t even try, honestly…
          Believe what you want to believe!

        2. Srikandi says:

          From a modder’s point of view, there’s currently no reason at all to believe that TS4 is actually worse than TS3/2/1. In many respects it’s virtually the same as either TS2 or TS3, and in some other respects it’s pretty similar. So I don’t actually think that a modder would be any more aggravated with EA than anybody else… they’re getting pretty much what they expect. They may have negative opinions of the game as PLAYERS, same as everybody else, but like everybody else, that depends on gameplay preferences. *shrug*

          In addition, I’ve noticed that a lot of non-modders have opinions about the game that any modder knows are simply incorrect… concerning for instance what the limitations of the engine are, what the performance tradeoffs are, and what could or couldn’t be added in an EP. EA hasn’t been lying about those things as far as I can tell, but a lot of folks just automatically assume they are. In other words, on some topics the modders are smart enough to AGREE with EA.

          My skepticism just relates to the idea that they’re suddenly mod-friendly in new ways ;) But if they fork over these docs… sometime BEFORE all the information in them is already well known and documented in our wikis… I’ll have to retract that.

  9. Nico says:

    Wow, this news alone just made me decide to get the game on release

  10. Matthew says:

    Hmm… on one side it’s good that modding becomes official with support and documentation. But on another side I’m afraid that through such “official” measures, The Sims 4 team might actually leave some parts unrevealed (but at the same time saying “there’s thorough documentation / that file is dangerous! Don’t touch it!”) to avoid modders actually outsmarting EA’s so called “limitations in the game engine”. More importantly, I’m afraid that everyone out there will actually think they’re born scripters and release problem scripts, or objects that actually are viruses and do attach in creations.

  11. Steve says:

    Which version on Python? Python 3 or 2?
    Any documentation yet on modding?

    1. Srikandi says:

      Official? not yet. Unofficial? Sure, the Wiki at MTS should have most of the data the people who are researching the file formats have uncovered (aside from anybody who is selfish enough to keep it to themselves :p )

      Nothing on scripting until we get the game code. There aren’t any scripts in the demo.

  12. nikivictory says:

    I’m hoping that custom content creation will be easier in ts4 as well, if so I may just start making my own cc for this one

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