A new expansion pack for The Sims 4 launched on 16 March 2023, and thanks to the EA Creators’ Network, we got a chance to have a look.
This is a large pack, so we are doing a series of articles so we can focus in detail on the new features of the pack. This article talks about the new milestones and infant and todder quirks.
Milestones are a new feature for Sims of all ages. They remind me a little of the memories from The Sims 2, but these are easier to look through as they have a nicely organized panel for them. We’ll go over the ones we’ve found so far.
The Infant milestones are mostly about development. Below we have one of my infants, shortly before they aged up. There are a few missing that I know of, like Learned to Crawl and Peed on Caregiver, but this is at least most of them.
My sense is that the developers who worked on these either have recent memories of infants of their own, or asked people who did, because not only are the cute moments represented as milestones, but there are some much less cute ones, as well. Thankfully the blowout is just a giant puddle on the floor, but still.
Some of the milestones gate various actions and socials. For example, the fun need is locked until the Sit Up milestone is unlocked. Infants are also not able to sit in the high chair until they can Sit Up. Once they have the Learned to Coo and Learned to Babble milestones, you can direct them to coo/babble at other Sims. Once the infant ages to toddler, they get a bonus to toddler skills depending on what milestones they’ve achieved. So far I’ve only managed to get small bonuses, but it’s something.
Toddler milestones, like the Infant milestones, are about development. There are milestones for maxing each of the toddler skills, and also various social and firsts milestones. I didn’t get all of them on this toddler – I know I’m missing “Studied Numbers” under Cognitive, but this toddler got most of them, I think.
I haven’t spent a lot of time with Child and Teen Sims since the update, but their milestones seem to be more about firsts and life events than development. Child Sims have milestones like learning to ride a bike, first day of school, and childhood phases. If they’re an occult, manifesting their occult form will show as a milestone when they become teens. Their other milestones are things like falling in love, starting puberty, graduating high school, getting a job, and the like.
As with the other life stages, in the Simology panel it will show hints about some milestones your teen might work towards next.
Young Adult, Adult, and Elder
Most of a Sim’s life will be spent getting milestones in this section, as Young Adult, Adult, and Elder are all grouped together. Their milestones involve things like falling in love, getting married, breaking up/divorcing, having children, graduating university, getting jobs, basically the things you’d expect.
For example, here’s a Sim who is a little ways into their Young Adult years. They’ve fallen in love, gotten married, adopted a couple of pets, and had a baby. They’re a stay-at-home dad, so they haven’t gotten a job yet, but maybe when the baby is older they will do so. They’ve got time, though.
What milestones they do – or don’t – get seems to affect them in multiple ways. Sims will get moodlets about their milestones. This Sim, for example, has never had a breakup nor has she cheated or been cheated on, so she’s feeling pretty good about that, and seems to want to get frisky with her partner.
Sometimes Sims feel not so great about their milestones, though. If they get far enough along in life and haven’t accomplished much, they can have a midlife crisis.
You seem to get a warning first – I got this notice for this Sim about 24 hours before the midlife crisis started. I didn’t actually do anything to avert it, so I’m not sure if you get the Sim some milestones if it will avert the crisis. Eventually this turned into a full-blown midlife crisis for this Sim.
The details of the midlife crisis can be found in the Aspiration panel, and the duration can be seen by hovering over the midlife crisis moodlet. If the Sim completes midlife crisis desires, it will reduce the duration of the moodlet, until eventually the midlife crisis is over, one way or another. The flavour of a Sim’s midlife crisis seems to depend on what milestones they are missing, so each Sim can potentially have a completely different set of desires. The more desires you fulfill for them during the crisis, the better the outcome.
One of the stated goals of this pack is to make Sims feel more like individuals. One of the ways they’re using for this is Quirks. Quirks are effectively temporary traits that only last for that life stage. So far only Infants and Toddlers have been given quirks.
These quirks seem to be discovered whenever the infant or toddler does an action (or has one done to them) that is affected by these quirks, so most of them are discovered fairly quickly. They only last for the current life stage and don’t seem to take traits into account, so it’s quite possible – and I speak from personal experience – for your Sim who was a Calm infant to wind up being an Aggressive, Destructive toddler. There are some quirks that are the same for both infants and toddlers, like “Good Appetite” and “Loves Being Held”. If an infant gets one of these quirks it seems like they will get the toddler version of the quirk when they age up. I am only going on what I’ve observed, but I’ve had three infants with “Good Appetite” and all three of them also had “Good Appetite” as toddlers, so it does seem to work that way.
Let’s look at the quirks we’ve found so far – this is by no means an exhaustive list:
So far we have found Early Riser, Free Air Tinkler, Gassy, Good Appetite, Happy Spitter, Hates Being Held, Hates Wakeup Time, Loves Being Held, Loves Wakeup Time, Self Soother, and Snuggly Sleeper See the slideshow below for full descriptions of each quirk. The quirks are like traits in that some can conflict – you won’t get an infant with Loves Wakeup Time and Hates Wakeup Time, for example.
When an infant ages to toddler they get a new set of quirks, although, as I mentioned earlier, it’s possible that if they had an infant quirk that has a toddler version, they’ll automatically get that toddler version.
The toddler quirks we’ve found so far – and again, this is not an exhaustive list – are Aggressive, Destructive, Good Appetite, Light Sleeper, Loves Being Carried, Loves Books, Loves Sounds, Loves Wakeup Time, Loves Water, and Messy Eater. See the slideshow below for descriptions. We’ll add more as we discover them!
Some of the toddler quirks are fairly benign, even helpful, like “Loves Wakeup Time”. Toddlers with this quirk tend to wake up in a good mood. There are some other quirks, however, that are a bit challenging, like “Aggressive” and “Destructive”. By the way both times I’ve had Aggressive and Destructive on a toddler it’s been on the same toddler. I’m not sure they always go together, but they have so far. Those two toddlers were very quick to kick and bite, and one of them almost made a point of destroying their older sister’s school project. I’d take my eyes off that little toddler for just a minute and he was beelining for that poor rocket ship.
So I’d say these quirks are definitely doing their job of giving Sims more personality!
The quirks really do add to their personalities. The Aggressive toddlers I had really did go around kicking everyone, just like in the trailer. I had some infants who would just happily drop off to sleep when put down in their cribs, whereas with some their poor parents had the hardest time getting them to sleep. Every baby really is different.
The quirks and milestones were intended to make Sims feel more like individuals, and from what I’ve seen, they’ve really done that. My Sims definitely feel more “alive” than they did before. I actually found myself cheering the first time one of my child Sims learned to ride a bike. Her dad was pretty happy for her, too.
I haven’t been this invested in my Sims for a very long time. I’m thrilled with the changes this pack has brought.