History Of The Sims: How A Major Franchise Evolved From City-Builder To Life-Simulator

Back in 2000, California-based developer Maxis released a game entirely focused on the micromanagement of someone’s life, letting players pull their strings to make them do chores, go to work, and make friends. The Sims filled a niche that no one knew existed, becoming both a video game and cultural phenomenon. With the release of The Sims 4 on Xbox One and PS4, as well as the new Pets expansion pack, we thought we’d relive the history of one of the biggest PC franchises of all time.

This gallery starts at the very beginning, looking at the game that sparked the idea for The Sims, how creator Will Wright explored his burgeoning ideas further, and–eventually–the creation of The Sims. As with any long-running video game series, The Sims has had its ups and downs, as has Will Wright, developer Maxis, and publisher EA, and these highs and lows are also thoroughly covered.

For those that would rather see a video, we have a 30-minute look back at The History of The Sims, which covers the same touch points and delves much deeper into the history.

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