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The Sims 4 celebrates its 9th anniversary with two new kits and a long-awaited Gallery overhaul

Thus ends the "Take The Reins" summer content programme… at least in terms of paid DLC

Several adult Sims hanging around at a poolside party in The Sims 4. All are in swimwear and many sport floatation devices.
Image credit: EA

The Sims 4 turned nine years old this weekend, and while that might not seem like such a big milestone, it is in fact fairly noteworthy if you know your franchise history. The Sims 2 and The Sims 3 both had a roughly four-and-a-half year lifespan, so their most recent successor has officially worn the current-gen crown for twice as long as either of them ever got to; or, looked at another way, is now as old as both of its immediate predecessors combined.

While the hotly anticipated birthday reveal of an "unexpected surprise" still hasn't materialised, the event was marked by the official announcement of the game's next two mini DLC packs. The Poolside Splash and Modern Luxe kits are releasing very soon — in fact, they're due out tomorrow at the time of writing. Poolside Splash will feature 29 new swimwear themed Create-A-Sim items, including cosmetic flotation devices and a surprising number of outfits for kids (more than zero is surprising in a pack not aimed at that life stage, after all). Modern Luxe, meanwhile, is a Build/Buy pack themed around "statement" bedrooms and living rooms, and will contain 28 new items. The item count means that both new releases are on the larger side as far as kits go, for whatever that's worth.

The news was accompanied by the release of the historic-sounding Patch 150, which — while more low-key than many players had anticipated, given its proximity to the game's anniversary — brought with it a number of heavily requested features. The Gallery has now been returned to full functionality after being thoroughly gutted for long-term maintenance a few months ago, meaning that you can now browse other players' creations with a greatly more accurate search function, among other improved features. The patch's other significant addition is to Build/Buy mode, allowing you at long last to select each kit individually when filtering items according to the DLC pack they come from. Previously, kits were all lumped in under a single toggle, an encumbrance not suffered by other pack types.

The update is rounded off as ever by a slew of other minor fixes and tweaks. My favourite this time has to be that Morgyn Ember — The Sims' first confirmed canonically non-binary character, who arrived with 2019's Realm of Magic add-on — should now take proper advantage of last year's pronouns update to go by They/Them in game.

Along with July's Horse Ranch expansion pack, the announcement of these latest two kits marks the last of the paid DLC planned for The Sims 4's Summer 2023 lineup. The "Take The Reins" programme has now delivered everything it promised, although it's still technically scheduled to last until the end of September, and many in-the-know fans are predicting some kind of big news to round off the season. Watch this space, I guess.

The Sims 4's Poolside Splash and Modern Luxe kits will be released on September 7th. Patch 150 is live now across all platforms, so remember to back up your saved game and mods folders before updating!

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