I mentioned in another topic I'd recently spoken to a friend of mine who works at EA Sports in Burnaby, besides a few rumors and a bunch of sports stuff (I've quickly forgotten) he talked about the turnover rate of players between games in certain series. I brought up the Sims and he pointed out that apparently that unlike other EA titles (especially) with a stronger male player presence like Battlefield or Fifa - the Sims series sees a larger turnover rate (of players) then any other EA game series (game to game) over time between games.
I actually agree with this, a lot of people I know who played the Sims just don't have the time anymore as they've grown older, due to family or careers. I find this especially true with my female friends, many who loved previous sims games but never continued on to the next game in the series. While for a lot of younger people I work with or meet, the Sims 4 is their very FIRST Sims game.
Even looking at creator content, everything from mods to clothing much has been created often by a new generation of simmers for each game. Certainly theres a few familiar faces creating content between each game, but they are often in the minority. Much of the CC I download for the Sims 4 is not from the same sites I downloaded Sims 3 CC. .
My friend claims that when the Sims 4 was first released, a large portion of the day 1 sales came from fans of the series (something like 65%) - but (with the Sims) over time that margin turns on its head where the large buyer base becomes new players during the games life cycle (as each Sim game usually lasts 3 years with expansion releases, ect).
So I suppose what I took from this was, that each Sims game is made for a new generation to some degree. I know certain community managers have mentioned in passing that the Sims 4's target audience is teenage girls, while that does seem like a stretch - I can actually understand it more realistically when you put all this into perspective that NEW sales will come from a younger generation who have never played a Sims game before.
Its rather fascinating and I'm sure explains why certain changes and evolution's happen in the game due to each new generation of players.