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Maxis Studios, EA Games

© 2021 Electronic Arts Inc

The Sims 4

2014

Explore and customize every detail from Sims to homes, and much more. Choose how Sims look, act, and dress, then decide how they’ll live out each day. Design and build incredible homes for every family, then decorate with your favourite furnishings and décor. Travel to different neighbourhoods where you can meet other Sims and learn about their lives. Discover beautiful locations with distinctive environments and go on spontaneous adventures. Manage the ups and downs of Sims’ everyday lives and see what happens when you play out scenarios from your own real life! Tell your stories your way while developing relationships, pursuing careers and life aspirations, and immersing yourself in this extraordinary game, where the possibilities are endless. Play with life!

- Players are able to construct their own specific gender and sexuality expression through the gameplay and character design. The abundance of control and choice allows players to engage in queerness if they so choose - Meeting the Queer Me criteria

- Electronic Arts (EA) worked with LGBT+ media organisation GLAAD on reforming the character creation mechanic to loosen the gender binary.

- Following this update in 2016, the create a sim function allows users to construct diversely gendered sims – rather than selecting ‘male’ or ‘female’ characters, users are offered the choice of ‘masculine’ or ‘feminine’ with regard to the fashion preference and body type of your sim, as well as offered the option as to whether or not your sim is able to get pregnant.

- However, none of the NPC sims present as being anything other than cisgender. It was not until the ‘Island Living’ expansion pack that the first pre-made character, Lia Hauata, was introduced as non-binary. The player is therefore able to construct or see their own gender identity in the base game by creating sims but is not typically presented with others’ diverse gender identities unless they download additional expansion packs.

- Sexuality is fluid throughout the game: all characters can be attracted to and romantically involved with all other characters.

- In partnership with the ‘It Gets Better Project’, the Sims received an update that introduced gender-neutral bathrooms, rainbow flag-inspired clothing and Pride-related items.