Hey everyone, and welcome to our
corner of the forums. This is something we've never tried before - a collaborative project between Maxis and Sims players where we can be completely transparent about our development process, and ultimately build a new Stuff Pack for The Sims 4 together! If you're just now discovering this project, I'd encourage you to where we unveiled this project and discussed how you'll be able to influence its development. While this project is well under way, there are still many ways for you to contribute...
First, you'll see a number of helpful links to blogs and discussions that have helped shape this pack's development to reach where we are now. Following the links, you'll find the dates that each survey will be conducted on, where you can come back and directly vote on how development should proceed. Finally, you'll find a welcome message that outlines what we're doing here on the forums and how you can participate.
Thanks for being here - this project couldn't happen without your support and input!
• An introductory blog where we discussed the vision for this project and how it will work, and commenced voting to select the Stuff Pack's overall theme.
• In this blog, we presented two distinct art styles that could fit within an eco living theme, and discussed how our art director typically helps in making this choice.
• This blog helped kick off the most in-depth survey yet, where players helped select 28 objects and 14 pieces of clothing. It discusses the thought process that those of us at Maxis follow to narrow down choices when we're planning a new Sims pack.
• This blog introduced a very important vote, giving players the opportunity to read through proposed design blurbs, and vote for their favorite group of features. Options included Laundry, Off the Grid, Food Preserves, and Carbon Conscious. It also showed off our initial design brainstorm for this pack, and discussed the process of how we select features to include in Stuff Packs.
• This blog discusses the process we go through when selecting the name for a pack, as well as sharing an important development update as the pack moves from pre-production into full production.
• This blog discusses how we develop the official icons for Sims packs, and reveals some of the concept icons for packs that didn't make it to the final product. There's also a first look at a prototype of laundry gameplay running in-game for the first time!
Eco living is the winning theme!
• Results from the first survey, where players selected the overall theme of this Stuff Pack.
"Style B" has won the art style vote!
• Results from the second survey, revealing the winning art style which we'll use to inform the look of all the objects and clothing in this Stuff Pack.
Stuff Pack object vote results!
• Results from the third survey, revealing the 29 objects which will be included in this Stuff Pack.
Stuff Pack clothing vote results!
• Results from the third survey, revealing the 17 pieces of clothing which will be included in this Stuff Pack.
Stuff Pack gameplay feature vote results!
• Results from the fourth survey, where players selected the interactive gameplay features that will be included in this Stuff Pack.
Stuff Pack name & icon vote results!
• Results from the fifth and sixth surveys, where the community helped select the official pack name and icon.
June 4th dev update - learn about object creation
• Learn all about the development process objects go through to get from concept art drawings, to the final in-game object.
SimGuru Forum Posts
So what happens to those themes that didn't win... ?
• A candid discussion about the themes from the first vote that didn't win, and what their future is in The Sims.
References for Concept Artists
• A concept artist from The Sims 4 asks the community for reference images that help express their vision for what an eco living theme should look like.
• Theme Vote
(April 3rd - April 6th): Select the overall theme for the pack. Every part of the pack will be influenced by this key decision.
• Art Style Vote
(April 10th – April 12th): Select between proposed art styles for the pack, which will guide our concept artists in the objects and clothing they create.
• Objects & Clothing Vote
(May 18th – May 21st): Browse through the concept art we’ve drawn for the pack, and select your top choices to help us determine which objects and pieces of clothing are included.
• Feature Vote
(June 23rd – June 26th): Select the top gameplay feature(s) you want to have included in the pack.
• Pack Title Vote
(September 6th – September 8th): Select a title that best summarizes the pack's atmosphere and content.
• Pack Icon Vote
(September 13th– September 15th): Peruse different icons and select the one that will appear in the pack's box art and within the in-game catalog.
You made it through the links! Thanks for sticking with me through this introduction that sets the tone for what purpose this forum will serve.
Most importantly, I'll set some base guidelines for what myself and other developers can't share while we work on this pack. There are really only two things we can't discuss... First, we can't talk about anything regarding the pack's budget. As a publicly traded company, this isn't the right venue to share financial information. Second, we can't share a release date. You're going to be with us every step of the way throughout the development of this pack, but it is still a real stuff pack that we're selling, and as such it will have a normal announcement and marketing campaign - the same as any other stuff pack.
As development progresses, I'm very much looking forward to sharing in-depth information. It's really up to you though how much you want to be involved, or how much you're interested in learning about how we work. If you're just looking for general information on the big development milestones, be sure to read our blog posts on the main site. If you want to check in from time to time to see how things are progressing, we'll have regular updates that are stickied in this forum where you can get caught up. And, if you really want to delve into the nitty-gritty, you'll find me here on a regular basis starting threads about our accomplishments, challenges we face, and the small decisions that are made in day to day development that influence the game that you'll ultimately play.
So, outside of voting - how can you contribute to this pack? As we share regular information about the pack's development, it will naturally spur further discussion here in these forums. In game development, many of our decisions are group discussions where well reasoned arguments can convince the majority and help us proceed. In the same way, you're all welcome to post threads and participate in reasoned debates here that are prompted by recent development updates that we've shared. Certainly your contributions here will be read, discussed, and considered as we work on the pack, and your ideas can influence the final game.
If you have any questions feel free to post them here in the forums, or to contact me directly on Twitter . I hope you're as excited as I am to discover where this pack takes us