Tips for playing The Sims 4 on a Mac

This list isn’t exhaustive and if you have any tips I have left out , please feel free to leave a comment and I will add them, giving you credit of course 🙂

  1. Ideally playing on a Mac with dedicated graphics will ensure the best possible gameplay experience. The current Macs with dedicated GPUs are the high spec. 21″ iMac, the 27″ iMac, the 5k iMac and the high spec. 15″ MacBook Pro. If the Mac you’re looking at only has Intel graphics then it doesn’t have a dedicated GPU.
  2. Play around with the graphics options in game to find the best configuration for your Mac. You may need to enable laptop mode for smooth gameplay.  There is a graphics thread on the official forum detailing other Mac users experiences, it’s worth checking to see what settings they have their games on and how it is playing. If your game won’t load properly after playing around with the graphics settings simply go into Documents > Electronic Arts > The Sims 4 and drag the Options.ini file to the trash. Empty the trash and restart your game. The graphics settings will have been restored to the default settings.
  3. For instructions on how to install The Sims 4 on a Mac go here. For uninstalling go here.
  4. Close all other applications running on your Mac, including apps such as Time Machine, Spotify and Dropbox.
  5. Turn off automatic updates for both Origin and The Sims 4. Instructions on how to do this can be found here.
  6. Play offline.
  7. Disable Origin in Game: Open Origin, click on Origin in the menu bar then Preferences. Click on the Origin In Game tab then uncheck the box next to Enable Origin In Game.
  8. For help on installing Mods on a Mac read ItsaprilXD’s excellent step by step guide.
  9. ALWAYS move your Mods out before applying an update/patch. Verify with the Mod creator that they are compatible with the latest update then you can put them back in.
  10. If your game isn’t performing properly try repairing it in Origin by right clicking on the game in My Games and selecting Repair Game. You can also try moving out your Sims 4 folder onto your desktop and letting the game regenerate a new one (Documents > Electronic Arts > The Sims 4). If your game now works the problem is in your user data somewhere, most likely you have a corrupted save or your CC/Mods are causing issues. For help dealing with Saves read Crinrict’s excellent post here.
  11. My help, bug and troubleshooting thread over on the official forum is updated regularly with known issues, possible bugs and what to do if your game is experiencing problems. Lots of Mac Simmers also contribute to it. Similarly Simsocity’s tips thread is definitely worth a look at.

12 thoughts on “Tips for playing The Sims 4 on a Mac

  1. Ashton

    So, with intel graphics I can’t take decent pictures? Do you know of the game settings my computer will be able to handle so that I can still get good quality pictures? A lot of cc I have looks terrrible in-game but perfect in CAS and I don’t understand. Thanks, ❤


  2. Katharina

    Dear BluebellFlora,

    at first I really want to thank you for all the hard work you’re doing, you’re really helping us out a lot!
    I have Macbook Pro Mid 2014 13″ Retina and Sims 4 is running very well. I only have the base game though and I would love to install the expansion packs. I am just very afraid because Sims 3 was running well, too, until installing my first expansion pack. After that nothing seemed to work anymore and I really tried a lot. Not even the base game ran without crashing when creating a Sim, so i just gave up and bought Sims 4.

    Do you think it’s safe to install an expansion? Or what do I have to consider? Does the chronological order play a role?
    Maybe you can help or give me a short advice?

    Thank you 🙂


    1. BluebellFlora Post author

      Aww, you’re welcome, thank you 🙂 Sims 4 runs like a dream compared to Sims 3 because it is natively written for macOS whereas Sims 3 was the Windows version in a wrapper called Cider. This caused all the problems which EA have just swept under the carpet 😦 You should be fine but if not then I think EA offer refunds within 24 hours.


  3. Teagan

    I just got a 2017 Macbook pro and started playing sims4 on it. Runs perfectly but my laptop gets extremely hot. Is this normal?


  4. Kari

    My Mac (with Retina) also gets really hot when playing the Sims 4, unfortunately so does the power pack. Has anyone ever heard of a pack blowing while playing the Sims 4 (I am onto my third – thank goodness for Apple Care)?


    1. BluebellFlora Post author

      If you are running any kind of software that requires a lot of processor and graphics power, like a game, then your Mac will be consuming a lot of power too. However, your machine will only draw the maximum needed from the charger so it shouldn’t burn out. For example, the old non-retina 13″ MacBook Pro required a 60w charger, the 15″ an 85w and the MacBook Air 45w. You could use the 85w and 60w charger for the MacBook Air as it would only draw a maximum of 45w but you shouldn’t use a 45w or 60w for the 15″ MacBook Pro as it will not be providing enough power and could damage the battery.

      I’ve had one burnt out charger but three? Wow, that’s excessive! The white block should never be covered as it does get hot so be careful you don’t have a cushion/duvet covering it. Are your electrics ok? A power surge could quite easily cause this issue. And yes, Applecare is always a definite yes when buying a new Mac 🙂



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