I’ll be completely honest with you; the way I play The Sims games is generally as a hands-off sort. I’ll offer little guiding nudges, but for the most part I let the autonomy of these little people play itself out, or I’ll design houses and entire families and see what happens when they get together. The Get Famous expansion for The Sims 4 flies directly in the face of that playstyle, requiring you to make your character’s rise to fame a full-time, absolute focused commitment. This is our review for The Sims 4 Get Famous.
In spite of how that open might read, I actually don’t entirely mind how Get Famous requires you to focus on steering everything about your Sim. While it took some mental hurdle jumping on my end, those who play The Sims as fully guided dollhouse experiences will feel right at home.
To call this “‘Get to Work’ but with celebrities” kind of sells the whole experience short. Yes, you’re entering into the day-to-day work of your Sim as they go through a shoot, but there are a lot of interesting little tasks laid out before you to get a Gold rating for your work.
Even before you see the set, you still have to win an audition, which generally requires your Sim to have a set level of a skill like Charisma, Fitness or Comedy. Once you’ve nailed an audition, there are prep things you can do to help improve your performance, such as reach a Fitness level or perform social interactions. You’re not really required to meet these preparatory goals, but they’re a fun enough carrot to chase for those who want to ace everything they do at a shoot.
While on the set, there are a variety of tasks you have to perform such as get into hair and costume, and extra tasks like schmoozing with the directors or co-stars or rehearsing in front of a mirror help improve your overall score. Once you’ve told the director you’re ready for action, you even get choices of whether to play the scene safe or get “risky”, hamming it up in the best tradition of film scenery eaters.
The variety of shoots are interesting enough, ranging from advertisements to TV series to eventually larger productions, but the tasks can get pretty repetitive over a while. More often than not I found myself blazing through the opening tasks with the game speed turned to max just to get to the fun part of the shoot. Seeing my aspirant actor coat the scene with cheese brought me no end of joy.
Maintaining your fame is just as involved as everything that happens before and during a shoot. Practically daily, you’ll have to perform a variety of public tasks that keep you in the spotlight, whether it’s performing songs at a bar or posting new content on Simstagram.
What’s interesting about this whole system is that you unlock Fame Points, a sort of skill tree that can offer various benefits for you. This tree not only gave incentive to grow my Sim’s fame, but also had little branches for those who either did beneficent or malicious deeds. So, conceivably, you can make your Sim famous for being a jerkwad in public and get adoration for it.
Further wrinkling this whole progression system is the addition of random Quirks, which instill a number of Moodlet-like neuroses to your celebrity in the making. Whether it’s someone who obsessively drinks juice or a person who doesn’t like being touched by people less famous than them, these oddball additions make the life of a famous Sim that much more colorful.
All of this basically builds into making the titular goal of the expansion a full-time job, and one I’m not sure speaks to the way I play. It’s a lot to manage for just one person, so I can’t even imagine what it’s like for attempting to make multiple Sims stars.
Additionally, a lot of this expansion’s content seems to be geared towards the single-leaning Sim; how celebrity affects the family dynamic isn’t something I investigated, but all of the things balls to juggle with attempting to become a star were already a lot and I’d imagine the needs of a family would complicate things to the point of being not fun.
Still, if this expansion provided enough entertainment for the more observer-focused Sims player, I can only imagine those who like to get in the simulation and twist every knob will have lots of fun.
Note: a review copy of this expansion was provided by the publisher.