Once you discover the magic of “motherlode,” The Sims can start to seem repetitive outside of building custom homes and creating Sims for your neighborhoods. Fan-created challenges incorporate new twists by adding self-imposed rules into the gameplay. There are a variety of challenges to choose from, some of which work with older games in the series.
Fans looking for a competition can share their challenges on forums, and there are numerous YouTube and Twitch channels dedicated to sharing challenge gameplay. The five challenges listed here are a small fraction available for players to try. Check out these, or any of the other fan-created challenges, and add a new twist to your game.
There are many variations of the original legacy challenge, one of the better-known Sims fan challenges. Households start with a single Sim that must be newly made in Create-A-Sim. This Sim will become your household’s founder. The only rules are that the founder cannot be a Sim that was previously played, they must be the only member of the household at the start and they must be a young adult. Legacy challenges go on for ten generations, and players can choose between a variety of succession laws from randomized heir selection to strict matriarchal or patriarchal lineages.
Founders can be moved into any neighborhood, but need to be moved onto an empty lot 50×50 or larger. You must demolish any existing structures on the lot before your founder can be moved in. There is a starting limit of §1,800, though an extreme challenge option can be used leaving founders with no starting funds. Players are permitted to use the money cheat to get the appropriate starting funds, but this is the only time that cheats are allowed.
This challenge has been around since Sims 2 and has been adapted for subsequent games. There are two versions available for Sims 4. The Apocalypse Challenge is designed to be difficult, especially at the start, as your Sims must adhere to several restrictions. In total, there are 24 restrictions in place, each tied to specific career paths. To lift these restrictions, Sims must reach the top of each career. Winning the challenge requires you to lift all 24 restrictions. If you’re competitive, your score is the number of in-game days it took to complete the challenge, with a lower score being better.
The game starts with a founder, though unlike in legacy challenges, the founder can be a Sim who was previously played. This means that they can have skills built, as well as other perks and advantages. This is a great way to utilize Sims from other challenges. Your founder Sim can be any age from young adult onwards. Oasis Springs fits the aesthetic of the challenge, but players can choose any neighborhood.
The only rule is the lot must be empty, so demolish any buildings before moving your founder in. If your founder has a job they will need to quit it. The challenge will begin once your founder is unemployed.
This challenge was created for The Sims 3 and has since been adapted for The Sims 4. Players create a household with three Sims who will live together on the same lot, each in their own separate dwelling. There are limitations to what items players are permitted to use in each dwelling, and once the houses have been built and the Sims moved in, the household funds must be reduced to zero.
Players are permitted to control each Sim on the first day of the challenge to get them jobs and start building essential skills (like cooking) to avoid any mishaps. After the first day, players must rotate control between the three Sims, but only control one per day. For two days, your other Sims will be left to their own devices while you are helpless to watch, allowing them to get into all sorts of mischief.
The Asylum Challenge was first made for The Sims 2 and has evolved with the series. Players create a full, eight-Sim household and are limited to controlling a single main Sim. The main Sim must be a young adult and, along with the other seven Sims, must have the Insane personality trait. Players can choose the Sim’s appearance, style and remaining two traits. To win the Asylum Challenge, players must complete a number of aspirations to be allowed to “leave” the asylum.
There are a few aspirations that are off-limit, most pertaining to wealth or a successful lineage. Players can choose between three difficulty levels which will impact the number of aspirations needed to win, household funds and even how many comfort and skill-building objects the household starts out with. No matter what difficulty level is chosen, the game is designed similar to a game of musical chairs: there is never enough seating, toilets and other essentials to go around.
Most challenges limit the number of Sims that players are permitted to control, but the Off the Grid Challenge allows players to play with an entire neighborhood. The goal is to transform your neighborhood into a tribe of likeminded Sims who wish to live in a paradise that does not use any modern technology. No technology, no indoor plumbing and no businesses or careers. If there are any community lots with these amenities, Sims are forbidden from visiting them. If a community lot requires forbidden items, players may create an inaccessible basement to place these items in to meet lot requirements.
Players can choose any neighborhood that has a minimum of five lots. The number of lots will determine how many community lots you’re permitted, so you may need to rezone your community. To prevent any families from aging out of sync, players will need to turn off aging for all but the active household and rotate between families. Currently, players are required to pay bills even if they have no utility-sucking items. Wind turbines and solar panels in the new Eco Lifestyle expansion pack may allow players to have a truly off-grid experience in their games.
If you're finding your Sims gameplay is becoming monotonous, challenges are a great way to change the way you play with life.