Community Blog: Why Your Sims React Differently To Fire and Death!


In Case of Fire…

We’ve been making improvement to how Sims react to events happening around them in The Sims 4. The first major change to this Reactions system was the Jealousy update, which improved how Sims react to their loved ones cheating on them. Fire and death are two huge moments in any Sim’s life, so they were next on the list to make bigger and better – and earlier this month, we did just that.

Though it might sound grisly, fire and death (including death by fire!) have been a core part of The Sims franchise ever since the first Sims game was released over 15 years ago.


Fire fire!

We noticed that sometimes, Sims were reacting in a lukewarm (pun intended) fashion to the raging infernos around them. On some occasions they wouldn’t even recognize a fire was going on near them and continue doing what they were doing before. This led to some unbelievable situations, like a Sim watching their favorite TV show, oblivious to the fact that their stove was on fire. (We’ve all sort of been there, right?)

We’ve made improvements so that Sims realize that there’s a fire sooner. When one Sim discovers a fire, they’ll also alert the rest of the Sims in the house to the fire. This’ll give all the Sims a chance to escape the building in case the fire grows out of control. Once they reach safety, they’ll sigh in relief and play different animations depending on their traits. Most Sims will panic, but evil Sims will cackle, and Gloomy Sims will cry. Factoring in the traits of your unique Sim into our Reaction system is one of the ways we’re making Sims more believable than ever.


Grim Affairs

Death is a part of every Sim’s story, and we weren’t totally satisfied with how Sims reacted to the grim occurrence when it did happen near them. Sims would often mourn for the fallen Sim, but the moment that ol’ Grimmy showed up to reap them, they’d be perfectly fine afterwards. This didn’t feel believable. We’ve made several improvements to how Sims react to death and its steward, the Grim Reaper.

First of all, Sims will play an initial reaction animation when another Sim dies. It felt unrealistic that a Sim would see a body and just begin crying, so we added a set of animations that play upon “discovering” a dead Sim. In addition to this, Sims will now react differently to another Sim’s death depending on their relationship with the recently deceased. Sims with higher relationship will sob more heavily, while Sims with very negative relationships (like enemies!) might even cheer at the Sim’s death. How morbid!


We also felt like the Grim Reaper wasn’t getting enough respect. The embodiment of death would appear, and Sims around him would simply continue doing what they normally did. We don’t know about you, but if the Reaper appeared next to our Sim, we’d sure freak out! After this past update, when the Grim Reaper appears to reap a dead Sim, other Sims around him will gasp and react to the Reaper’s presence.

Speaking of the Grim Reaper, remember that you can plead with him to spare your Sim’s soul. We’ve added some new reactions if your plea succeeds!

We hope you’ll have fun playing, and let us know about all the ferocious fires and deadly situations your Sims get into.