logo-150-height

Sims 3 ‘Unknown Error’ fix – El Capitan, Sierra, Late Night & Ambitions related

This is the biggest Mac/Sims 3 issue at the moment, apart from the unsupported graphics cards issue which EA STILL haven’t fixed after nearly 4 years…

The Unknown Error is a magical mix of Late Night and/or Ambitions trying to be installed onto a Mac running macOS 10.11 El Capitan or 10.12 Sierra. It’s that simple. We have a thread running over at AHQ where people are posting about it and yesterday a rather super person called coreylamalva414 posted a solution which appears to actually work (go and show him some love if it works for you 💚). His instructions can be found here.

Thanks to Imay who has confirmed in the comments below that if you also have Outdoor Living and Fast Lane installed you should repeat the steps for these SPs too.

Edit – coreylamalva414 has uploaded a very helpful video to walk you through the fix:

Edit: I have to just make one thing clear here, this Unknown Error issue is very specific to El Capitan/Sierra/Late Night/Ambitions, there are plenty of other reasons why you may be getting the Unknown Error issue. If you do not have El Capitan or Sierra, or Late Night and/or Ambitions installed then please do not ask me for help on this page as it is irrelevant. There have always been issues running the game on a Mac and if you have a post-2013 Mac with unsupported Intel/AMD graphics then the game is not technically compatible so getting the game to actually run smoothly would be a miracle.

Advertisements

25 thoughts on “Sims 3 ‘Unknown Error’ fix – El Capitan, Sierra, Late Night & Ambitions related

  1. Blomms

    Hey Bluebellflora,

    I just installed The Sims 3 on my Mac and faced all the problems that other users had.
    My game had graphic issues (fixed that with your workaround and uninstalling EP10), as well as the debugging error.
    I don’t think that there is an official solution for that yet, but I think I have found one!
    I went into my documents and changed the ‘Electronic Arts’ folder to ‘_lectronic Arts’.
    Then I started the game. The Settings will be reset and a compete new game has been started. I set all settings to Medium except for Sim details, which I set to high, then saved and quit.
    A new The Sims 3 folder will appear in Documents, but not within an extra EA folder.
    I copied all my downloads, saves, etc. into the new folder. The only thing was, that I had to redownload all my installed content ( all from EA, no CC ).
    All trouble stopped, game is working fine and no crash in hours, nor debugging error. 🙂

    Hope that helps many others!

    Like

    Reply
    1. BluebellFlora Post author

      Thanks but that is the same as moving out the Sims 3 folder from Documents > Electronic Arts which is well documented on almost every Sims site and forum (I’ve covered it here). The user’s graphics settings will also be dependent on which Mac they have so whereas you have almost all settings on medium, some can play on high and some have to play on low. Also, you didn’t have to download your store stuff again you could have just gone into your old Documents > Electronic Arts > The Sims 3 > Downloads and copied over the items (that’s where they are downloaded to). They would show up in the Launcher where you can install them into the game again, no need to re-download 🙂 The Unknown Error message has been around since the game was launched in 2009 and can pop up for a myriad of different reasons. This article however is very specific to El Capitan/Sierra/LateNight/Ambitions.

      Like

      Reply
      1. Blomms

        I wasn’t aware of that haha and Ive been trying to figure this out for days. And I did copy them all into the new folder, however I did have to re download them all again. Thought I’d just leave it here because maybe it will help somebody like it helped me 🙂

        Like

        Reply
      2. Hjommd

        Thank you for advice, BluebellFlora. I’ve tried the method they describe in the link to the post byascoreylamalva414 you gave us, it did work! One thing could be clearer, perhaps, if you only have one EP installed (like Ambitions) the copied folder then should be placed within the Sims 3 app, and with in that at the same location ascoreylamalva414 describes in her post in your link. Perhaps it is self-evident but I didn’t get it at my first try.

        It raises the question if the original folder could be erased once you’ve copied it? I mean it is more than 2 GB, so having two such folder take up a lot of space. Have you tried?

        Like

        Reply
  2. Paul

    Hello BlueBellFlora
    Yesterday I uninstall the game, install it again (from Origin), manually patch it to 1.67, and the damn game runs perfectly, I played for a couple of hours. I went to sleep and today I was trying to open the launcher and it happened: “Unknown Error”, I tried to open the launcher from the App Folder, and it happened, I tried to open it from Origin and again.
    I have MacBook Pro (13 inch, early 2011), 2.3 Ghz Intel Core i5, Intel HD Graphics 3000 384 MB, with Sierra 10.12.
    After two years without playing this, yesterday looked like finally I would be a simmer again, and then, this happened. Can you help me, please?

    Like

    Reply
      1. BluebellFlora Post author

        Ok. Then I have no idea I’m afraid. It’s probably Sierra as EA stopped supporting the game 3 years ago when OS X 10.9 Mavericks was the current OS. Make sure you have 8Gb RAM in your Mac and purge it frequently. If you’ve added CC then remove them and try a vanilla game. Two mods which may actually be helpful are Overwatch and ErrorTrap from NRaas 🙂

        Like

        Reply
  3. caitlinridsdale

    i have just the base game installed and origin wont even open the launcher i have tried uninstalling reinstalling loading the patch but it still wont work saying unexpected error occurred… what now?

    Like

    Reply
    1. BluebellFlora Post author

      I can’t help you unless I know more about your Mac and which version of macOS you’re running. You don’t need Origin to play the game, just to install it. Have you tried launching it from within your Applications folder?

      Like

      Reply
  4. caitlinridsdale

    sorry 🙂
    my mac is a 2011 model and is running 10.12 Sierra.
    yeah i also tried that no luck 😦 is it worth installing windows on my mac and playing it that way? i read that Sierra is the problem?

    thank you 🙂

    Like

    Reply
    1. BluebellFlora Post author

      iMac? 13″ MacBook Pro? 15″ MacBook Pro? 11″ MacBook Air? 13″ MacBook Air? Mac mini? Mac Pro? MacBook?

      Sims 3 always runs the game better in Windows because it is native.

      Like

      Reply
  5. Ashley

    I’m hoping you can help me! I recently wiped my Mac and everything has been updated to Sierra 10.12.3. I have successfully downloaded TS3, however when I go run the program it won’t open at all. It will give me the message “The application ‘The Sims 3’ is not open anymore.” I have fully uninstalled and reinstalled the game many many times but it hasn’t seemed to help any. One of the last times I’ve tried to reinstall the game and run it, it would have the big square with the plumbob, then go to a black screen as if it was going to run. Then it would disappear and return to the desktop background. I called customer support thinking they could help me, but everything they suggested (and guarantee would work) hasn’t worked. Ive used the super patch, updated the game, fixed the patches and it still won’t run. Is there anything you suggest or should I wait to see if this issue gets fixed in the future? It seems that I’m one of the only people this is happening to. Could it also be because I don’t have enough RAM to even open the game? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated! Thanks!

    Details on my Mac:
    macOS Sierra Version 10.12.3
    iMac (21.5-inch Mid 2011)
    Processor 2.7 GHz Intel Core i5
    Memory 4 GB 1333 MHz DDR3
    Graphics AMD Radeon HD 6770M 512 MB

    Like

    Reply
    1. BluebellFlora Post author

      It’s happening to pretty much most people who are running Sierra and then install the game. If the game is already installed and the Mac is upgraded to Sierra there is a better chance of the game working. You have enough RAM although upgrading to 8Gb anyway would be a good idea. The game has not been updated since January 2014 so is not technically compatible on newer Macs with unsupported hardware (yours is supported) or any versions of macOS post OS X 10.9 Mavericks.

      Like

      Reply
  6. Ashley

    Thank you for your insight!! Its just frustrating that I tried for 3 days to get this game to wok and find out that the game really isn’t ‘supported’ with Sierra. How would I go about bootcamping my Mac?

    Like

    Reply
    1. caitlinridsdale

      no worries Ashley. if you type into your spotlight Bootcamp Assistant it should come up. you will need.
      1. A copy of microsoft Windows ( im currently using Windows 7 64 Bit)
      2. At least a 8-16gb USB or CD

      As long as you have the CD/USB and a windows software disk your all set. There is youtube tutorials if you need an extra hand like i did.
      I found this tutorial great! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2S5YM-TQ-nc&t=134s

      Good luck 🙂

      Like

      Reply
  7. Imay

    Hi BluebellFlora,

    Thanks so much for this, your blog has been a great help for running Sims 3 on a Mac (I have a 2011 Mac so it’s technically compatible with Sims 3 but is very old and so struggles a bit).

    I was having this problem (unknown error), and followed your link to coreylamalva414’s post. The first time I tried it, it didn’t work, but after scrutinising my folders I realised it wasn’t just Ambitions and Late Night missing but also Outdoor Living Stuff and Fast Lane Stuff. After copying those folders over the game launched.

    So anyway, I’m just posting this to a) say thank you and b) recommend anyone trying this fix double checks that ALL their installed packs are present as it may not be just Late Night and Ambitions that are the problem.

    Like

    Reply

Leave a reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s