The Sims 4: Love and Loss

This is an ongoing series about my experience playing The Sims 4 for the first time. For other previous posts in the series, click here (part 1), here (part 2), and here (part 3).

If Peeps seemed to be something of a mild, computer-addicted introvert in her twenty-somethings, middle-aged Peeps is proving to be something else entirely! As well, that no matter how old someone gets, “awkward” cannot be escaped, especially when someone like me — a self-proclaimed impatient and unobservant video game player — helms the controls. (Wait, what?) Case in point: remember Cooper? He was a nice gentlemen whom Peeps met over the course of various outings to the park. Well, after another few nice social gatherings… 

Look, it’s all very nice.

…where Cooper took more than a few chances to show off his prowess…

Thanks, Cooper, but clearly no one cares.

…he and Peeps ended up back at her house chatting. The conversation seemed to be going nicely until silly me decided to intervene. In perusing Peeps’ conversation options, I hadn’t realized before that I could steer any conversation towards a number of different emotional directions, from happy to angry, from humorous to absurd. In between all that was also the option to flirt with my companion. Not knowing any better, I did just that. The scenarios that played out were cute, but a little weird…and then suddenly Cooper put a stop to my affections. Well, okay then.

Feeling slightly dejected, I did some digging to see if I could find out why Cooper had put on the brakes. It didn’t take me too long to realize that Cooper was married. And not only that, but Peeps had met his wife, who just happened to be on her friends list, too! My dejection turned to utter embarrassment, so I sought out Cooper to see if Peeps could apologize. It seemed that all was forgiven at their next meeting, and the two became good friends. In fact, over the course of several sessions, Cooper visited Peeps quite often to talk about things like beds and sports and the number one most common thing in the world: hatred of mosquitoes. (I could be misinterpreting the game’s icons.)

Only then, he starting coming around a little less often once Peeps met Adam.

With one love interest down the tubes, I was determined to find for Peeps some interpersonal happiness, and a nice, single fellow named Adam seemed like a suitable suitor. I can’t recall exactly when Adam showed up on Peeps’ friends list, but when it came time to host a dinner party, Adam was there and invited. The group had a nice time, and Adam was the sole person to remain afterwards.

It was a great dinner par…wait a minute…??

After a few more meetings, Peeps and Adam went out on a date.

Okay, so they are pretty cute together.

It was a little odd on my part as I tried to reach certain, uh, amorous goals as the couple’s evening went on, but…it was a success? (As the game said, and I quote: “It was a date…if not the most successful date ever.” Huh.) And that was despite the fact that Peeps decided to take a nap in the middle of it, on a nearby bench at the restaurant, nonetheless. Maybe that’s why it was not the “most successful date ever.”

When a nap calls, Peeps listens.

As I arranged more meetings between Peeps and Adam, the more “in love” they became, and the more Adam’s “boyfriend meter” rose. And that means nothing more than exactly that.

See, a “boyfriend meter.” It’s pink and okay yes it’s weird now.

Soon enough, my cute little couple was an actual couple, and Adam showed up frequently at Peeps’ house. They dated and occasionally disagreed, but it seemed like they were having a good time together. In the meantime, Peeps continued to excel at her job, and I managed to reach an interesting balance with the game. I worked to level up several of the skills at Peeps’ disposal. She reached full “chef” status by using the outdoor grill where she masterfully made vibrant veggie burgers and tantalizing tofu dogs for her friends. (Indoors, however, her cooking skills remained relegated to oatmeal, chicken nuggets, and…peas. Yep, like just a bowl of peas.) She also remained consistent with jogging and painting, and she became a master fixer of plumbing and appliances, too! And, of course, she still loved her computer. But, to be fair, she had been working from home a lot, so the PC was her lifeline to money-making.

And then, one day, Peeps woke up sad, as in very sad. It was unlike the “sad” she experienced when I forgot her birthday that one time; this time was different, heavier. Checking the icons, it turned out that (gasp!) Peeps was in mourning. I had no idea this was thing that could happen in the game, but who had died? Checking her friends list, it turned out that…on no…it was Cooper and his wife. That was sad, very sad indeed. Without knowing what to do (would there be a funeral?), I eventually discovered that Peeps could find closure by visiting their headstone…which were located…on the front lawn of their residence. Ummm….alright. (Make no mistake that I have been constantly surprised by the way lifetime events play out in the this game.)

After finally finding Cooper’s former house (Holy crow, he and his wife had kids, too. That made me feel like twice the heel for Peeps’ initial come-ons towards Cooper.), there were indeed two headstones on the house’s front lawn. And so, Peeps paid her respects. And yes, I was moved, too.

I’d never seen Peeps cry before. 😥

It was wasn’t too long after that Peeps entered in the “elder” life-stage herself. As it is, time waits for no sim, and so the next chapter in Peeps’ life begins.

A confident Peeps quietly plots to…take over the world! Or maybe just finish that book.

If I can’t stop harping on the fact that it’s been remarkable watching Peeps’ microcosm of a world play out before me, it’s because I can’t believe how engrossing it’s become. I’ve let go (mostly) of my need to control what’s going on in the game and have enjoyed just watching Peeps do her thing and learning from my own missteps. Frankly, I can’t wait to see what Peeps, with her distinguished gray hair and worldly outlook, decides to do next!


All images including lede taken by author during PS4 gameplay of The Sims 4 © Maxis, Electronic Arts (2014).


One Comment

  1. cary says:

    Reblogged this on Recollections of Play and commented:

    In my latest update of my first playthrough of The Sims 4 on Virtual Bastion, I think I finally learned the nature of the game’s life simulator-ness. And just like in real life, I found that not paying attention doesn’t pay off, especially in remembering the friends I never knew Peeps had. Ah, well.


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