As the ancient ones predicted, long ago in the forums of old another Sims expansion has arrived. This time it’s The Sims 4 Get Famous, the sixth expansion pack and overall the twenty-sixth addon pack for The Sims 4. As the title suggests, Get Famous is all about claiming some fame, following in the footsteps of previous packs from previous Sims titles like Superstar, Late Night, and Showtime. So yeah, once again the underlying concept is nothing new.
But dang it, as ready as I was to write off yet another celebrity expansion, I’ve gotta say that Get Famous still managed to amuse the crap out of me. I’ve been playing it constantly since I bought a copy on launch day, with no small part of that being due to the fact that I am a YouTuber. Or “content creator” or “influencer” or whatever gag-worthy term you wanna use. And Get Famous provides the most accurate representation of my current daily experience that I’ve seen, since, I guess maybe the game Youtubers Life. But before we dive into the simmified world of viewcount analytics, trending topics, and corporate sponsorships, let’s get familiar with Get Famous.
Starting with the new world of Del Sol Valley, a loose approximation of Los Angeles, California and Hollywood Hills. Certainly fitting for the simulated star-studded silliness, though Del Sol Valley isn’t super generous with its usable land. You get three neighborhoods containing five houses, five community lots, and one lonely empty lot. The rest of what you see consists of Sims 4 set dressing, a visual facade that’s almost as fake as real life Hollywood.
Looks nice, but a couple more spots to build on without bulldozing would’ve been appreciated, and maybe an explorable downtown area too. Oh well, moving onto clothing and such, consisting of dozens of tops, bottoms, outfits, accessories, hairstyles, shoes, makeup, scars, and assorted aesthetic superficialities. A lot of this arguably falls under the costume category, seeing as there’s plenty that’s used on the pack’s film sets. But the rest seems to be… lifestyle wear? E-celeb attire? Influencer garb, I’ma go with that.
There are also new aspirations and traits to consider: world famous celebrity, master actor, and self-absorbed. By design these work nicely with the new career options, which are Actor, Style Influencer, and Self-Employed — the last two having been added in a free patch to the base game. Oh and kids get their own mini-career as well through the after school activity of Drama Club. This happens largely the same way scouting did in The Sims 4 Seasons, where youngins gain incentive to hone new skills and get a jump start on a future career. But regardless of what path your sims pursue, fame and stardom is attainable at any time. This goes beyond the five celebrity star levels seen in the past, diving deeper with a dedicated skill tree complete with perks, quirks, and reputation.
Certain actions will affect both your celebrity level and public image, meaning you can now have sims that are known for both good and bad deeds. Whether or not you choose to follow fame or infamy, it works in much the same way, just with corresponding positive and negative actions affecting progression. All of this means that The Sims 4 finally has a decent reputation system to play with, where your actions are acknowledged and judged by the community at large. It affects what you can do, where you can go, and who thinks what upon seeing you. For example: there are clubs and social gatherings that require having a set fame level or positive public image.
If you’re more controversial you may be locked out, but there are still unique opportunities available to more unscrupulous individuals, with money to be made on the black market and like-minded celebrity vermin to hang out with. There’s a continual river of opportunity flowing your way once you’ve acquired enough fame, regardless of how you got it. And there’s a ton of variety to be explored through the new perks and quirks, similar to the progression system seen in Vampires. The more levels you gain, the more of these unlock. So with the right perks a sim is able to get away with mean-spirited pranks and stirring up drama between celebs, then calling on their squad of unquestioning fans to back them up, possibly even wearing the same clothes like a douchey cult.
While another set of perks can let sims give inspirational speeches and inspire charitable donations, while making them so likeable that nearly everyone instantly becomes their best friend or romantic interest. Even the annoying paparazzi can be dealt with in a positive way with the right perks, it’s powerful stuff! However, quirks are more complex, affecting sims of all reputations. These are triggered by actions and events, ranging from becoming addicted to drinking “juice,” to developing a phobia of physical contact from strangers, to exploding in anger or sadness at any given moment.
You might even develop stalkers, have your phone number leak to the public, or start getting obsessive fan mail with increasingly questionable contents. And of course, if you want to opt out of the celebrity life entirely that’s an option too, either directly through the fame panel or in the options menu with this checkbox that alters how fame actively accrues in the first place. Speaking of active, the new Acting job takes the form of an active career à la the Get To Work pack, where you’re given the option to follow a sim to their place of employment and directly take action. You begin as an uncredited extra, taking any gig you can get through your chosen acting agency, and climbing the ladder of progress to becoming a star. The first step is auditioning, which outside of preparing for in your own home by making sure you have the right skills, takes place off-screen and relies on a bit of luck. When you finally land a part, a shoot will be scheduled and it’s off to the set!
And man, as a fan of games like The Movies, shows like Extras, and filmmaking in general, I found each of these sequences superbly engaging. Which surprised me considering they’re not too different, mechanically-speaking, from the existing active careers and timed events already in The Sims 4. But yeah, the whole vibe of the acting career just amuses me, from rehearsing with costars, to going through hair, makeup, and costume fitting, to enjoying the free on-set catering, to the actual performing of scenes themselves. There are a slew of interesting scenes to perform, although each one functions about the same. You can perform either a “safe” or a “risky” version of a scene, with risky performances providing both greater chances for advancement alongside greater chances of looking like a moron.
I really enjoy this career and the constant struggles it presents, with it being one of the more well-rounded in terms of required skills for success and multiple chances for failure. Next up is the Style Influencer, a free addition to the game which takes the form of a traditional work from home career and has your sims pursuing the life of a Trend Setter or Stylist. You start off discussing style tips and interviewing sims about fashion, writing reviews for online rags, and using a sketch pad to compose new ideas while augmenting your painting, writing, and photography skills.
Eventually the routine becomes more hands-on, with the ability to come up with fashion trends that other sims will follow, and provide makeovers to sims around town much like you could back in The Sims 3 Ambitions. And finally, there’s the self-employment option, made up of any number of money-making activities already in the game. But with Get Famous, you can now fully commit to a career in the dubious realm of content creation and becoming an “Internet Personality.” This is distinctly different to the social media career introduced in City Living, although it builds on several features it introduced like social media status updates, posting to Simstagram, and building an online following. Self-employment is far more self-guided though, much as it is in real life, with few actual rules and a whole lot of risky decision-making. The new Media Production skill affects your capabilities with each of the main pieces of equipment: music production stations, video production stations, and drones.
Music production ties into the new hip-hop music that’s been added and involves a bit of creative mixing, with multiple audio tracks that can be enabled and disabled, and the final result can be uploading to online streaming services or submitted to labels for possible record deals. Video production takes place at an editing station desk with a computer, camera, microphone, and lights, each of which can be upgraded. Using this setup you can make fashion and beauty tutorials, toy and tech product reviews, and of course straight up vlogs, which can be recorded in distinguished styles based on your sim’s mood. Drones are the other method of producing video content, where you select a sim or a location and your hovering friend will autonomously wander around filming as long as it has the battery life.
You can’t actually watch the end results yourself unfortunately, but whenever it’s done recording the drone will land and you can name the video. Honestly half the fun. Once you’ve gotten some video clips loaded onto your computer, you can either upload them raw or begin the editing and post-production phase.
Ahh now this is some surreal gameplay for me: editing footage, combining video clips, applying transitions, adding effects. Then uploading the video but not budging from the chair because now it’s time to hype it up on social media, respond to commenters, and check the analytics to see how it’s performing. Mmm. Nothing quite like watching my virtual self perform the exact actions of my actual self in real time.
Like turning down a friend’s offer to hang out so I can stay at home checking the comments section and studying trending video topics in the dark. Am I talking about the game or real life, beats me I’m a mess, send help! Really I savor these moment of terrifying self-reflection, so props to Get Famous for making me question what I’m doing with my life. I truly was impressed with how specific it got in terms of playing the part of an “influencer,” like pulling all-nighters, dealing with fickle fanbases, making sponsored content, and navigating the murky waters between staying true to your values and completely selling out. It’s a scary, exhilarating, lonely, lucrative, unstable, fantastic career to have, and being able to experience it in a game like The Sims is wildly cathartic for me.
About the only thing it doesn’t include are the endless press emails from Nikki Perez, and the extensive research and scripting stages of content creation that I personally spend a lot of time on. But I suppose Get Famous caters more towards the unscripted vlogger/lifestyle-type channels. Exemplified by the fact that you can even put your kids to work filming videos, so if you’re a father of five then you can easily exploit the system by making your kids angry or sad, filming their reactions, then editing the results to rake in those slimy views and indulging in your piles of cash. On the topic of monetary indulgence there’s a host of new buy mode objects, like the vault for storing your sim’s valuables and providing some Scrooge McDuck-like escapism. It’s also a new woohoo location because of course, along with the floating sci-fi sleep pods.
Doesn’t look comfortable but who am I to judge. There’s also a golden toilet for taking golden dumps, as well as an assorted selection of chairs for talking golden sits. Another big thing added in the most recent patch is a first-person camera mode, accessed by pressing Shift+Tab. This drops you into the shoes of the currently selected sim, with camera movement split between the mouse and your sim’s head. And it’s not just a passive viewpoint, you can actually play through a majority of the game like this if you want, with interactions accessible in first-person so long as you have the interface turned on. Heh, speaking of turned on, first-person woohoo is downright hilarious to me.
[woohoo music plays, sims mumble in awkward pleasure] Yeah so, first-person mode is admittedly not the most ideal way to play, with copious clipping, visual glitches, and a wobbly POV that acts more like a drunken mistake simulator than anything else. But it’s so unnecessary that it’s great, and makes the game feel unusually intimate. Oh and before I forget, The Sims 4 also finally has terrain editing tools, along with deeper basements, and multiple foundation and half-wall heights. Yeah I know, stuff that could’ve been in the game from the start but better late than never I suppose. And that is The Sims 4 Get Famous pack. As usual the asking price is $40, and as usual I’m pretty much recommending it with the caveat that it offers what you’re looking for.
It is by no means a necessary pack, but it’s a darned enjoyable one that caught me off guard with how challenging it can be to succeed within. Having never been sold on the whole “celebrity life” packs of the past, I didn’t have much hope here. But what sold me was the fame system working as more of a spectrum of overall social standing and reputation, combined with all the self-indulgent fun I had being a virtual content creator. If anything, I totally recommend it to my fellow YouTubers and other online weirdos.
Get Famous is not only prime let’s play fodder, but it makes for a solid bit of self-parody where the jokes practically write themselves. So yeah, Get Famous. It exists and I like it.
And if you enjoyed this review then do check out my others. I’ve talked about plenty of Sims stuff, and cover a variety of things each week on LGR. And as always thank you very much for watching!