While everyone is still waiting for an official trailer – and even an official announcement – about The Sims 4 University expansion pack, a leak over the weekend has shed some light on what Simmers might expect.
The Microsoft Xbox store listed The Sims 4 University for pre-order and included a description of some of the features Simmers have to look forward to.
The Sims 4 University – or “Discover University” as it seems it will be called – is one of the most hotly anticipated expansions for the franchise. Many Simmers who have played the game since the first edition put the University expansions at the top of their list of favourites.
But it will be tough for The Sims 4 to live up to the expectations of the previous expansions.
While The Sims 4 has been more immersive in some ways, many Simmers feel it lacks some of the features of the previous editions of the game.
The Sims 4 University: Theories about the world and buildings
This is a hot topic. The description from the Microsoft store listed two different universities. Some expansions have offered smaller worlds with fewer lots while focussing on gameplay. Get to Work and Get Famous are two such examples.
Additionally, the ability to edit, customise and build dorms and universities is another key feature many Simmers are hoping for. While the City Living expansion added apartments, many have found the limitations of editing the apartments prohibitive.
But the way apartments work in City Living is one way dorms could be replicated in the University expansion. It might be that some functionality – like extended customisation options for both apartments and dorms – is something might be added to the November patch ahead of the anticipated 15 November release of the The Sims 4 University expansion.
The Sims 4: Gameplay theories
One gaming blogger had some thoughts about how the classes and the progression through there might work. LazyGameReviews shared this theory to social media in September – prior to the description being leaked.
The Sims 4 Realm of Magic: A template for University?
The theory goes like this:
In The Sims 4 University:
Sages become professors, the different magic types become classes/majors, Magic HQ becomes the main campus building, other islands become classrooms/dorms
Magic duels become debates, experimenting with the cauldron becomes lab work, Caster’s Alley becomes a place to buy school supplies or whatever.
It’s an interesting theory, but the Get to Work and Get Famous expansions also offer options. Ditto for the “odd jobs” or part-time jobs that allow Simmers to follow their Sims around and perform tasks. The “cleaning up the island” from Island Living also has some gameplay options that could fit in with the way Universities function.
The Sims 4 University vs The Sims 2 and The Sims 3
But there’s another interesting aspect of the anticipated expansion. Much of what the University pack added to The Sims 2 and The Sims 3 already exists in The Sims 4. In fact, much of it came with the base game.
The Sims 2 University expansion: What The Sims 4 already has
This came with a new camera which was recently added in the Moschino SP.
This added a cowplant, which came with the base game in The Sims 4.
Already exists from Get Famous. It came with a Plastic Surgery Station – that doesn’t exist yet, but it could be added as part of a patch.
This came with the Ressurect-O-Nomitron. Currently, spellcasters can bring ghosts back to life.
The Sims 2 University also added a new “zombie” life state and new musical instruments. The Sims already has loads of musical instruments. Adding the ability to start a band like The Sims 2 did could be another option.
The “Young Adult” life stage was also introduced in this expansion – that was always part of The Sims 4.
The Sims 3 University
This added the radio station, business, anatomy skeleton, Cerebralizing Brain Enhancing Machine and a sketch book. Most of these exist either as part of a career or the base game in The Sims 4 already.
Social groups (already part of The Sims 4), a plant life state and Street Art (think The Sims 4 mural) also forms part of some of the gameplay already available.
The Sims 4 University: All building up to this?
The overarching theory is then that so much of what has been added through expansions is all building up to make University one of the best packs yet.
Take a look at this weird bug posted by another Simmer to Twitter.
The Sims 4 University: November patch could shed some light
As with Island Living, the November patch could reveal a bit more of what Simmers can expect. The lounger chairs that came with Island Living, for example, could very well become murphy or bunk beds for University.
Ditto for roommates.
Bicycles – which is listed in the latest leaked description – could also be patched in. The Sims 4 Real of Magic added brooms to the game – but that is a straight teleport animation rather than object that’s being visibly used. Island Living’s jetski could be another way that The Sims 4 University uses bikes.
But how much of this gets patched to the base game will be something everyone keeps an eye on.
That might give some indication on whether or not some of the functionality is confined to the university world (like swimming in the ocean is confined to Island Living) or whether we’re set for gameplay that finally transcends everything and ties things together in a game which has sometimes felt a bit disconnected.
Antoinette is a recovering journalist, having written for Sports Illustrated, The Guardian, Daily Maverick and others. She has won multiple SAB Journalist of the Year awards, across a variety of categories. She thinks it’s strange writing about herself in the third person, unless she’s playing as herself in The Sims…which she’s been doing for over 20 years.