The Sims team has released a community blog showing off a special VR Tour of Maxis with the help of Google Expeditions, a virtual-reality teaching tool.
We’re excited to announce that The Sims™ 4 is teaming up with Google Expeditions! In Explore the Maxis Studio: How The Sims Are Made, you’ll uncover the ingredients that make up the secret sauce behind The Sims.
Google Expeditions is a virtual reality teaching tool that lets educators, students, and adventurers lead or join immersive virtual trips all over the world. In this journey through Maxis Studio, you’ll see and understand how the Maxis team brings The Sims 4 to life, from inception to launch, and beyond!
To give you a sneak peek at this exciting VR experience, we asked Stephanie Callegari, a producer at Maxis, to provide a behind-the-scenes look at how Google captured life with The Sims.
Hi, Stephanie! Tell us a little about what you do for The Sims.
I am the lead producer for The Sims 4 Expansion Pack team. I love games and really enjoy creating a game that is so versatile for storytellers, builders, and character creators. At The Sims, I work with designers to kick off our overall vision for the next project. Once we have designs, we collaborate with artists, engineers, and all disciplines to bring the design vision to life. During execution, producers on The Sims make sure the game is fun, and maintains the gameplay and features our players desire.
How did you start your career in video games? What advice would you give someone trying to break into the industry?
I realized in college that what I thought I wanted to do was boring. So every summer, I took an internship to try to figure out what I liked. It was the best advice my big sister gave me! I interned at Sony Pictures Entertainment in creative marketing. I enjoyed it, but really loved the post-production side. Following, I interned at DreamWorks as a production intern and just fell in love with production. Once I finished school and worked a bit, I took a risk and went for an Assistant Producer position here at EA, and I’ve been producing ever since. My advice is if you are a student, get an internship and get some hands-on experience. If you are fresh out of college, work hard, apply, and take a risk if it’s something you think you’ll love.
What is Google Expeditions, and how does it work for The Sims?
Google Expeditions is a virtual app to help teachers bring lessons to life. The Sims 4 expedition will be a series of panorama images and lessons we’ve created for students and viewers. Using Google Cardboard, viewers will walk through different facets of what game development is like on The Sims 4. I love this project because we get the chance to reach a different audience. I think there can be misconceptions of what making a game really is like, and instead of just explaining to students and viewers “how to make a game,” we get to show them.
Who will I meet on my Expedition?
In The Sims 4 Expedition, the tour will kick off with Laura Miele, our Chief Studio Officer, and Lyndsay Pearson, The Sims 4 Executive Producer, to briefly introduce Electronic Arts and The Sims. The tour will also introduce you to our designers, artists, animators, audio engineers, gameplay engineers, marketers, and our entire team.
How can I try Google Expeditions through my school, or how can I experience The Sims on Google Expeditions?
Google Expeditions is available to anyone to download and install. Expeditions can be group experiences with a guide leading and explorers following along, which are especially useful to educators for taking students on virtual educational journeys. However, you can also go on an expedition by yourself.
Getting started is simple! To use Google Expeditions, educators or individuals need to buy an Expeditions kit or build their own. Having a tablet for the group is recommended, and each participant needs a mobile device.
For more information, visit https://edu.google.com/expeditions.
We hope this Expedition helps you explore and learn about career opportunities in the games industry. Visit Google Expeditions to get started, and we’ll see you soon, Simmers!