In the past, a new The Sims title has been released every five years, making The Sims 4’s forthcoming 9th anniversary an unprecedented event for developer Maxis. Considering the series’ ever-expanding push towards a live-service model and expansion packs, this kind of longevity makes sense–after all, any devoted Simmer will tell you the game is quite an investment and, if you’re shelling out all your hard-earned simoleons on DLC, it’s nice to know you have a fair bit of time left with the game before its shiny, new version hits shelves. However, as we draw closer to a decade of The Sims 4, many players have been asking the same question: Where is The Sims 5?
Thankfully, we now have some answers. Though Maxis has historically kept quiet about development on new The Sims games before release, only revealing upcoming projects well after the bulk of development was completed, all that has changed with the announcement of Project Rene.
Revealed during 2022’s Behind the Sims Summit, Project Rene is the working title for the next generation of The Sims, presumably to be titled The Sims 5. According to Maxis, the studio behind the popular life-simulation franchise, Simmers have quite a long wait until they’ll be able to play the series’ next installment. However, this wait is for a good reason: Throughout now and launch, the developers at Maxis plan to share content and use player feedback to create a game more in line with fan expectations than ever before. Here’s everything you need to know about the upcoming game ahead of its release.
Why is it called Project Rene?
According to Maxis, the name Project Rene was chosen to be “reminiscent of words like renewal, renaissance, and rebirth,” as well as represent the team’s “renewed commitment for The Sims’ bright future.” It is uncertain if any part of this working title will make its way into the game’s final name.
During the Behind the Sims Summit, Maxis stated Project Rene is still extremely early in development. As such, it seems highly unlikely a full-version of the game will be released anytime before 2024. However, the team did soften this blow by stating they intend to share updates and in-progress work across the next few years, and will use player feedback to help aid the ambitious title’s development.
“Over the next couple of years we’ll continue sharing updates with all of you on Project Rene,” The Sims’ Franchise Creative VP Lynday Pearson said. “We’ll share In-Progress Work, Explorations, Sneak Peeks, and Behind The Scenes Content. As well as start to open up Early Access to Project Rene software to small groups over time. I’ll say this one more time before I go: this is super early for us and we’ve never shared information about our games years before they launch to the world.”
While there is no official list of platforms this next iteration of The Sims will be available on, it feels safe to assume you’ll be able to play the game on PC. In addition, footage shown during the game’s reveal indicates players will be able to switch between their primary mode of play to their mobile devices seamlessly, indicating that Project Rene will also be available on mobile.
While we might not know how our Sims will look in the franchise’s next entry, Maxis has shared footage of the game’s Build mode. For those who were a fan of The Sims 3’s robust customization, you’re in luck. The Sims 5 seemingly builds on the widely praised feature, allowing players to adjust patterns and even object shapes with ease. For example, rather than having two versions of the same bed in different sizes available for purchase, beds will now appear as one object you can then customize.
The gameplay also revealed objects will be more interactive, adjustable, and stackable than ever before, allowing for homes that look a bit more lived-in and far less blocky. Furniture can now be placed at previously unallowed angles, while items like decorative throw pillows can be set on comfort objects such as couches.
“We’re experimenting with what’s worked and where we can push further to offer more flexibility than ever before,” Pearson said. “We begin with the ability to change not only patterns and colors, but also the shapes of the objects that you’ll be using when you build and decorate in game.”
Not much is known about what The Sims 5’s multiplayer aspect will entail other than Maxis stating it will be both simpler and more all-encompassing than ever before. During the Behind the Sims Summit, Pearson said:
“With Project Rene, we want to make it easier to work together and share. You can choose to play it and create by yourself, or with your close friends. It’s entirely your choice! No matter who you want to play with, we want you to be able to play wherever you want.”
In The Sims 4, the only interaction Simmers can have with one another in-game is through the game’s gallery. In the gallery, Sims players can upload Sims, lots, and rooms for other players to download and leave feedback on. Based on Pearson’s statement, it seems safe to say this feature will also be in The Sims 5. However, it also seems possible there could be additional multiplayer features in store for us as well.
Cross-platform and cross-progression
One of the highlights of The Sims 5 reveal was the announcement of the game’s cross-progression and cross-platform compatibility. In the video, Pearson showed how The Sims 5 players will be able to seamlessly switch back and forth between their mobile devices and PC while using the same save file.
“This is demonstrating early technology tests on how you can play this game across supported devices of your choosing. Same experience–different screens.” Pearson said.
Maxis has yet to announce the full list of what devices will have access to this feature.
How to preorder
The Sims 5 is not yet available to preorder. We’ll be sure to update this section with where you can pick it up–and all the potential bonus content your preorder will come with–as soon as you can.