Sims 3 64-bit update from EA

MaxisJoe has posted an update in the ongoing thread in the Sims 3 Mac forum at Answers HQ:

“Hey macOS The Sims 3 players!

Just popping in to give my monthly update to you. First is the tl;dr version:

  1. Yes, we’re still working on it
  2. Yes, we’re adapting to work-from-home. I can’t say that this is a core factor in things not going as fast as we’d like, but it sure isn’t helping.
  3. Yep, that switch to ARM processors is exciting. Like all macOS developers, we’re frantically assessing what this means to us and our games.

The longer version of things:

I’m sure most of you have heard of the 80/20 rule. That’s the old developer’s truism/joke that 80% of the development happens in the first 20% of the budgeted schedule, and then the remaining 20% of work fills up that other 80% of the budgeted schedule. It’s a cheeky way of noting that the big low hanging changes happen quickly but then fiddly detail oriented stuff end up taking really big blocks of time. Guess which part of the schedule we’re in. Go ahead. Guess.

Part of the challenge is that some components The Sims 3 depends on were deprecated (“are no longer supported and won’t be updated to address compatibility, security, or stability issues”) in the intervening decade or so since the game was released. It’s been a challenge identifying these components and re-writing the integration points to work with the replacement components. Anyone who says “I migrated from Foobar 5.7.12 to Barfaz 7.12.58 and it only took a day” is not being entirely truthful.

As noted above, these are historical times. We’re adapting to doing work in the midst of a global pandemic and a societal reckoning. We’re learning new skills and new attitudes across the team and across the company.

No conclusions have been reached about the ARM/x86 transition. WWDC is still happening right now! Give us a chance to digest it all. We’re looking at the options available to figure out the best path forward.”

So yeah, they’re still working on it. Isn’t it lovely having someone at EA who actually bothers to take the time out and update us? Such a breath of fresh air.

Repairing Sims 4 packs in Origin

EA updated the Sim 4 back in April to comply with Apple’s notarisation policy. This resulted in all DLC (Expansion, Game and Stuff Packs) being installed outside of the Sims 4 app and in a standalone folder called The Sim 4 Packs in the same location as the game app is installed to, by default the User Applications folder, Users > User > Applications.

If you open the Sims 4 Packs folder you can see the game files for each pack. This is the contents of the Eco Lifestyle folder:

Since this update, repairing the game only repairs the base game and ignores all DLC. It also means that when you uninstall the game through Origin the Sims 4 Packs folder is ignored so you need to manually trash it.

This shouldn’t normally present an issue but removing or altering files within this folder, or if any files become corrupted, can impact your game and cause error messages. The Game Data Incomplete error message is triggered by the SimulationFullBuild0.package file and the ResourceSimulation.cfg file missing or corrupted.

The Pack Download in Progress error message is triggered by the ResourceClient.cfg file missing or corrupted.

A missing or corrupted thumbnails.package causes the llama missing icons error:

Simply repairing the game in Origin will not fix this. You need to trigger a re-download of the pack to replace the files causing the error. The easiest and quickest way to do this is to trash the relevant pack folder (see earlier screenshot above). This will prompt Origin to notify you of a pack available for download.

Download the pack and you should once again see the folder in the Sims 4 Packs folder with all relevant files present and hopefully not encounter anymore errors 🙂

The Sims 4 Plants and Planters

With Eco Lifestyle came a brand new style of planter, a vertical design. Not all plants can be planted in them though so I thought it helpful to compile a list of all plants and where they can be successfully planted to harvest. I tested all of these myself with MOO off in a clean game. If you are after more information about the plant and what it can do, head over to Carl’s excellent Sims 4 Gardening Guide.

Single Planter:

Large Planter:

Vertical Planter:

Harvestable Single Planter Large Planter Vertical
Apple No Yes No
Avocado No Yes No
Basil Yes Yes Yes
Begonia Yes Yes Yes
Bell Pepper Yes Yes Yes
Bird of Paradise Yes Yes Yes
Bizarre Fruit No Yes Yes
Black Bean Yes Yes Yes
Blackberry Yes Yes Yes
Bonsai Yes Yes No
Carrot Yes Yes No
Catnip Yes Yes Yes
Cerebrerry Yes Yes No
Chamomile Yes Yes No
Cherry No Yes No
Christmas Rose Yes Yes Yes
Chrysanthemum Yes Yes Yes
Coconut No Yes No
Cow Berry No Yes No
Crocus Yes Yes No
Dahlia Yes Yes Yes
Daisy Yes Yes Yes
Death Flower Yes Yes No
Dragon Fruit Yes Yes No
Elderberry Yes Yes Yes
False Morel Mushroom Yes Yes No
Fang Flower Yes Yes No
Fireleaf Yes Yes No
Flutterberry Yes Yes No
Forbidden Fruit Yes Yes No
Garlic Yes Yes No
Glow Orb Yes Yes No
Grapes Yes Yes Yes
Green Beans Yes Yes Yes
Green Pea Yes Yes Yes
Growfruit No Yes No
Gutsberry Yes Yes No
Holly Yes Yes Yes
Huckleberry Yes Yes Yes
Kava Root Yes Yes No
Lemon No Yes No
Lily Yes Yes No
Madnip Yes Yes Yes
Mandrake Yes Yes Yes
Merry Berry Yes Yes No
Money Tree No Yes No
Morel Mushroom Yes Yes No
Muckleberry Yes Yes Yes
Museberry Yes Yes No
Mushroom Yes Yes No
Napnip Yes Yes Yes
Noxious Elderberry Yes Yes Yes
Nuzzlenip Yes Yes Yes
Onion Yes Yes No
Orchid Yes Yes No
Parsley Yes Yes Yes
Pear No Yes No
Pineapple Yes Yes No
Plantain No Yes No
Plasma Fruit Yes Yes No
Poison Fireleaf Yes Yes No
Pomegranate No Yes No
Potato Yes Yes No
Quill Yes Yes No
Razzleberry Yes Yes No
Rose Yes Yes Yes
Sage Yes Yes Yes
Sixam Mosquito Trap Yes Yes No
Snapdragon Yes Yes No
Snow Drop Yes Yes No
Soy Beans Yes Yes Yes
Spinach Yes Yes Yes
Strawberry Yes Yes Yes
Taro Root Yes Yes No
Tomato Yes Yes Yes
Toxic Chamomile Yes Yes No
Trash Fruit Yes Yes No
Tulip Yes Yes No
UFO Fruit Yes Yes No
Valerian Root Yes Yes No
Vimberry Yes Yes No
Wolfsbane Yes Yes No