'Sims 4: Seasons' Just Makes Everything Better

Summer, Autumn, Winter and Spring don't come with every Sims game, but when seasons do finally arrive it always makes everything better. The Sims 4 version is no different.

The best Sims expansion packs add more incentive to stop skipping through half the game, and Seasons succeeds in breaking up what can often be hours of repetition. It's the same reason packs like Parenthood, City Living and Pets are so well-received, and why smaller "stuff" packs largely draw the most criticism. It's easy to get caught up in skill building, house building and relationship building. And, just like real life, not so easy to get caught up in the actual world around you. Seasons will make you want to step outside for extended periods for time, and that's always a good thing whether you're in a simulation game or not.

sims 4 seasons leaves
Autumn in 'Sims 4: Seasons.' EA

Each seven-day rotation through the seasons has different offerings, but a new calendar interface helps keep track of what's inside the expansion. There's an array of holidays to choose from that mirror real world ones or you can customize your own. By extension, this calendar interface also lets you plan house parties in advance, a less distressing method than clicking on the phone to have a bunch of people show up in five minutes. Each Sim has different reactions to holidays, a thoughtful and nuanced decision. Some may appreciate the sense of community and celebrate more of the 'giving' part, others may just stuff their faces with the grand meal, open some presents and be done with it. Both valid.

The pitter patter of the rain, the sun glistening on the top layer of snow, the warmth of a cozy house after walking through a blizzard, getting soaking wet with an 'uncomfortable' moodlet after a downpour, being disgusted by the dense, noticeable humidity in the air—all of these details are examples of how the Sims team identified the core of the pack and did it really well. The snow may not have depth, but it has character and smooth intractability, which is ultimately more important.

winter sims 4 seasons
See your breath during the winter season. EA

What's missing here are all the flashy features. The Sims 4 is working smart compared to Sims 3, with the result that Seasons feels somewhat safe. There's no snowboarding half pipe, but the entire gardening system update makes investing time in outdoor skills more practical (in addition to the flower arranging career and beekeeping activity). There's no swimmable beach vacation world (sigh), but there is a skating rink that can be placed in any world, during any season. There's no allergies or igloos, but everything, including objects, is reactive to the weather.

Seasons is a well-made expansion, offering a dozen pieces of desirable furniture, hot-and cold-weather outfits and everything you need to celebrate any holiday. While unfortunate that Seasons is the selling point instead of some big feature that encompasses and accentuates the actual weather itself, the expansion pack is still essential to enjoying the game for all it has to offer.