How to Play the Sims 4 for Free Now (and Always)

Like many people, I have fond memories of being addicted to The Sims . My favorite game was The Sims 2 , but I also dabbled in The Sims 3 for a while. Somehow I kicked the habit before The Sims 4 dropped in 2014 and haven’t played the franchise much since then. However, it seems like EA may have brought me back as The Sims 4 is now permanently free to play.

EA announced this last month by announcing that they will be making the latest entry in their Sims catalog completely free from Tuesday. This is not a trial version: you can download and play the base game without spending a dime. This is a pleasant, if not shocking, event; The game was criticized by Sims fans before launch , as it lacked content found in previous installments, and while downloadable content added many old and new features, some felt that the base game was never worth the full price. In a sense, The Sims 4 was designed to be free to play with add-ons and game packs.

Of course, some of us have already paid for The Sims 4 , and EA doesn’t want to leave you unattended. If you’re an EA Play or EA Play Pro subscriber, you’ll get special upgrades for The Sims 4 . The EA Play Edition of the game includes the Get to Work Expansion Pack , while the EA Play Pro Edition has both that and Materials for Toddlers .

To be clear, this is The Sims 4 base game. While this sim is enough to get you started, you’ll only be introduced to a fraction of what EA has to offer. True to The Sims formula, EA has designed expansion packs to complement the gameplay with additional furniture, clothing, pets, situations, storylines, weather, and more. Expansion packs include:

  • Cats and dogs
  • Life in the city
  • Cottage
  • Discover the University
  • Ecological lifestyle
  • Get famous
  • Get together
  • Get to work
  • High school years
  • island life
  • Seasons
  • snow escape

There are also twelve game packs that are additional upgrades to your game compared to expansion packs:

  • have lunch
  • Dream home decorator
  • jungle adventure
  • My wedding stories
  • Open Retreat
  • Parenthood
  • realm of magic
  • spa day
  • Star Wars: Journey to Batuu
  • Strangerville
  • Vampires
  • werewolves

By opening The Sims 4 for free to everyone, EA will earn a pool of leads for these add-ons and game packs (ah, here are the other shoes). Of course, you might never want to spend a dime on the game, but you might want to see the seasons while you play, or add restaurants to your experience, or send your Sim to high school. Suddenly you are on hundreds of dollars (and hours). Classic Sims .

How to download and play The Sims 4 for free

Chances are you have something that can play The Sims 4 . The game is available on PC, Mac, PS5, PS4, Xbox Series X/S and Xbox One.

On PlayStation and Xbox, downloading the game is obvious. You’ll find the game on both the PlayStation Store and the Xbox Store , which is free to download. However, things are a little different on the desktop.

On both Mac and PC, go to the EA website for The Sims 4 here . Hover over the blue “Play for Free” button in the top right corner, then select “EA App for Windows”, “Origin for Mac”, or “Steam”. If you choose one of the first two options, you’ll need to scroll down, click the appropriate link for your computer (EA app for Windows and Origin for Mac), then install and open the program.

Currently, The Sims 4 on Steam is only available for Windows. You can play The Sims 4 directly from Steam without first downloading the game.

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