Paranormal Stuff Pack DLC Review

The news of The Sims 4: Paranormal stuff pack has The Sims community a-buzzing, and it’s not from the spine-tingling horrors that await. The developer introduced ideas for a stuff pack of this caliber when Nifty Knitting won the community vote, but the idea for “Happy Haunts” did well with most of the community. While the original pitch has some elements in the Paranormal stuff pack, this pack is also more refined than the “Happy Haunts” idea, which works to its advantage. It’s fun to say that this pack is for everyone, but there’s a lot of great content from CAS (Create-a-Sim) to Build/Buy mode to Live mode. Supernatural fans will certainly enjoy this pack, but other Sims 4 players who aren’t fans of the occult will also find use in the CAS and Build/Buy items. Although it’s just one stuff pack, there’s a little something for everyone, no matter what type of Sims player you are. The Sims 4: Paranormal stuff pack is by no means perfect, but it’s fun, quirky, and definitely brings the scare factor. Being a stuff pack, there aren’t many CAS items added, but what it does come with fulfills the bohemian vibe of the pack with flying colors. Flowy, open-chested shirts paired with layered necklaces and patterned pants help bring boho-chic to life in The Sims 4. A new pair of chunky, open-toed boots is a little different from the “clay ” texture of Sims’ fingers , but that was somewhat forgotten after looking at the gorgeous floor-length, open shirt paired with shorts. While this style isn’t for everyone, those looking to create bohemian Sims will be in luck with these CAS items. Similar to CAS, the Build/Buy aspects of this pack are very niche. However, it’s not too bold to say that Build/Buy mode items are more versatile than CAS ones. The added furniture is both new and old—a perfect boho vibe. The séance table is nice, especially when combined with a crystal ball, but even though the table has a “special” seat for the Medium, the Sims will randomly pick a seat each time—even if the players say to their Sim to sit down first and then use the table. This is not a big deal, but can be a little annoying if there is a certain vision the player is hoping to achieve. The gameplay in Live mode is really where the Paranormal stuff pack shines, though. The new type of Haunted House lot is positively terrifying at times; full of random flashing lights, pop-up dolls, and lots of things that go bump in the night. Both players and Sims will hear unearthly voices from nowhere and loud bangs from no apparent source. When playing late at night, it’s definitely a scary experience, even for a game like The Sims 4. Not to mention the vengeful spirit from Guidry the (friendly) Ghost’s past who also appears while a Sim is living in a Haunted House or working as a Paranormal Investigator. We won’t reveal his name, but this ghastly ghost will be instantly recognizable and will terrify every Sim near him. Be careful, because he likes to blow out Spirit Candles—the stuff that protects Sims from bad juju. As previously predicted, the “Medium” skill only goes up to level 5, making it easier for Sims to enter the Paranormal Investigator career. After chatting with Guidry or purchasing a Paranormal Investigator license from the Rewards Store, Sims are ready to begin their freelance career. The “Easy” and “Adept” levels are relatively easy to play, but the “Expert” level is, unsurprisingly, kind of challenging. RELATED: The Sims 4 Skin Tone Update Still Doesn’t Work for Console Players It’s a bit monotonous with every job (kick a doll here, run through mud there, do a mobile seance here), but the game has glitched when it came time for the third level investigation. This took the Sim to an apartment that was definitely haunted, but no matter how many Specters were asked to leave or how much mud was mopped up, the progress bar stayed at zero. This is disheartening and seems like an oversight that should not be overlooked. The game will randomly generate townie houses as haunted, but it should work properly for all lot types first. There’s also the return of Bonehilda, the iconic skeleton maid from The Sims: Makin’ Magic. Some fans were upset that Sims could only summon him through the seance table and that he “lost” his iconic coffin, but that doesn’t appear to be an issue with the game. However, it seems odd that Sims must first have “Medium” skill past level one to summon Bonehilda when no skill was required in previous games. He is also romanceable, which has not been the case in previous iterations of the game. Bonehilda will be an eternal lover, because there is no choice to marry her. There are some great Easter eggs hidden within the game, such as the “I Ain’t Afraid of No Ghosts” Confident mood after a successful seance. Another nice nod to past Sims games, especially The Sims 2, are the auto-generated names for the Specters inside their jars. When clicking on the “Name” option, players will see either “Olive” or “Ophelia” in the auto-filled box—a blatant reference to the towns of The Sims 2 Olive Specter and her niece Ophelia Nigmos (also known as Ophelia Specter.) Overall, The Sims 4: Paranormal stuff pack does what it sets out to do. It gives players a new, terrifying experience never before experienced in the game. There are a few bugs, such as the accident in the apartment and an instance where a bed had to be removed to get rid of a creepy doll, but these things are easily fixed with patches. It’s hard to say that every Sims 4 player needs this pack, but for those who enjoy occult gameplay and artsy/boho CAS and Build/Buy items, this will certainly scratch the itch—just make sure it’s not a ghostly hand making a scratch. The Sims 4: Paranormal Stuff launches on January 26 for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. Today Technology was provided a PC code for this review. MORE: 15 Games You Should Play If You Love The Sims 4

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