It’s some that’s unsurprising to approximately no one who has ever been unfortunate enough to trust me with any sort of navigational duties, but I suck at directions.
Despite being an avid hiker, I suck even more at navigating them and might be one of the few people alive who manage to get more lost when in possession of a map.
So when The Sims 4: Snowy Escape expansion pack revealed that one of the new gameplay additions was hiking a colossal, freezing mountain, I was thrilled to bits.
Getting lost in the real world and forcing virtual people to suffer the same fate – in order to soothe my self-loathing borne out of my sheer ineptitude to exist – is exactly the kind of thing I want from a video game.
And it did not disappoint. Before even starting the excursion I was already lost. Perhaps that’s a bit of an indictment of the gameplay for the Snowy Escape expansion.
Or maybe it’s reflective of people (this person) who cannot read instructions, but figuring out how to even start climbing Mt. Komorebi in The Sims 4 Snowy Escape isn’t exactly obvious.
How to hike to the top of Mt. Komorebi in The Sims 4: Snowy Escape
Turns out this adventure is actually a social event. As the self-appointed leader of Hiking Introverts, this is not ideal. I select my hiking partners very carefully, but part of the appeal of hiking (okay, maybe not up a blizzard doused mountain) is the whole being-able-to-go-at-it-solo thing.
Nonetheless, it is one of those quirks of The Sims 4 that players put up with because the game offers so much else in return.
To get started, use the Sim’s phone and select the “Plan a Social Event” and choose the relevant option. You’ll also have to choose your Excursion Leader and additional team members to make the journey to the top.
Before doing that, though, make sure your Sims have supplies in their inventory. Snacks are a necessity on all hikes, virtual or real life. So, unless you are the sort of murderous tyrant who plays The Sims for no other reason than death and destruction, you should go with food.
Ordering rock climbing gear ahead of time is also useful unless you enjoy feeling inadequate and prefer reducing your self-esteem even further through a video game telling you how ill-prepared and utterly useless you are. By you, we mean the ill-prepared Sim, of course.
As with other social events in The Sims 4, there are set tasks to complete and you have to do so within a certain time frame. Failing to do this will result in furious Sims and a further existential crisis. Or maybe bestowing misery upon misery on your Sims is your vibe, no judgment.
Here’s an example of some of the tasks your Sims will be required to perform on their hike. And a screenshot of the Social Event option on your Sim’s phone, just in case you’ve never bothered with it.
And for good measure, here is a screenshot of Bella Goth, the Excursion Leader, making her way up an icy rock face in completely inappropriate attire, all while Mortimer is learning as he goes. Bella drew the long straw when the new MC Command Centre update, which allows for randomising skills, threw its benevolent dice.
Disappointingly, Mortimer survived, despite having absolutely no experience with this sort of thing. (Segue: I plan on freeing Bella from his hypnosis and letting her live the life she was meant to instead of the teenage-sweetheart Stockholm Syndrome she seems to suffer from).
Mortimer, however, could not continue his climb up the final rockface of this Sims 4 Snowy Escape adventure – because of those skills. Instead, he insisted on collecting blackberries until he was forcibly teleported for the purposes of this tutorial.
Other things to do en route to the Mt. Komorebi summit
On their way to the top, Sims can do things like collect food (like the blackberries), explore caves, maybe encounter forest spirits, Whoohoo in a cave, drink from mountain springs and you, the player, can build on the hidden lots.
Yes, lots. Not a typo. There are actually three hidden lots on the route – not just the one at the top.
Fun as these lots are to build on, it also highlights one of the less appealing things about the Snowy Escape expansion pack (and really, this is probably nitpicking considering how much wholesome goodness it offers).
The idea of recreating a type of Mt. Kilimanjaro (or another mountain of your personal preference) experience for Sims to repeat would be great.
You can certainly build a base camp lot, but because of the time restrictions on the ‘social event’ of the climb, your Sim isn’t going to be forced to sit around and wait to continue their ascend because of adverse weather conditions for example.
Finding some of the trail markers, much like finding the hidden cave in Granite Falls, can be quite frustrating at times, too. And the event-based approach to such an excursion feels a bit… mundane.
While there might be additional things for Sims to explore while they’re getting their faces snow blasted, trekking up a mountain isn’t supposed to be a tick-box exercise. It feels a bit like one of those ‘once you’ve done it and your Sim died then what’s the point in repeating it’ type of gameplay experiences.
That might also be because I spend most of my time building. Or because of my level 10 getting lost skill. Maybe even something to do with my control-freak tendencies. Overall, it doesn’t really matter. Because the world is mesmerising and despite the potential for feeling repetitive, I’m willing to give it the benefit of the doubt.
Because just like hiking in the real world, even if you do the same route 100 times, it’s not always what you are doing, but who you are doing it with. Bad luck, Mortimer.
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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.