A while back, I expressed my disappointment with how the Sims Cottage Living pack would not contain horses. While I’m still disappointed in this (despite the devs answering why), that didn’t stop me from picking up the pack last weekend.
I’d been hearing a lot of very positive things about the pack, including how challenging it can be to use the Simple Living challenge trait. So, having the itch to try something new, I bought it and spent most of the weekend playing it.
This is the first time in all these years playing Sims that I felt like I just completely failed the game.
I’ve been Simming since The Sims 1. I can probably count on one hand the number of times I’ve had a Sim die to something beyond my control. A few of those were thanks to guinea pig bites in The Sims 1, before I realized what was happening and why people were getting sick.
I’ve always been the kind to make sure fire detectors were set in a Sim house. But for some reason, I completely overlooked that. Maybe because for a long time, Sims 4 didn’t have a fire department that responded to house fires like other Sims – not until the May 2020 update!
Anyhow, I found a cheap broken down cottage on the Sims exchange and picked a random Sim to play this pack. This turned out to be an elderly fellow named Lucas. I’d had some interaction with Lucas before with other Sims, it seems. And I recall him being a fun and good-natured fellow.
So I took Lucas to his new home, where he immediately began to make the best of things by splashing around in the nearby pond.
Not that I could blame him. There wasn’t much else to do in the place until I unboarded the door and fixed it up some.
So I was set to explore this new pack’s content on a very small budget – exactly what I hoped to do. I had Lucas buy a coop and some chickens, which he took proper care of every day, earning new eggs and hatchlings over time.
When he had enough money, I invested in a llama. He used the wool to work on his cross stitch skills and started making money selling on Plopsy – the Sims version of Etsy. I also had him work up relationships with all of his animals, including the wild rabbits who were helping him with gardening.
Most of his income he earned busking at the local bar. He had a decent singing skill and he also was already somewhat of a low-level celebrity. So he could go and start his own little one-man concert and bring in enough to get by on the tips.
Luca was living a lovely, simple, pastoral life. Even if he was mostly broke and just managing to make his bills. That was the fun thing about it.
But then, tragedy struck.
Tragic Tale of Lucas
It was a stormy afternoon. But the llama needed feeding, cleaning and shearing. So I sent Lucas out into the storm to do his daily caretaking. Standing right next to the llama, he got struck by lightning.
That was crummy, but nothing I couldn’t come back from. He was a little dazed, but I had him finish up and send the llama back into the barn for safety from the storm. Then, I sent Lucas in to get cleaned up.
Luca was hungry after that, so he went to cook something to eat. I didn’t think much about it. But likely, his dazed state could have led to the fire that took his life.
A fire started and he instantly caught flame. Because this was a fixer-upper cottage, I never thought to install a smoke detector. Lucas was the only one in his family. All these things led to me being able to do nothing but watch Lucas burn to death.
When the grim reaper showed up – he now has a snazzy new tablet – and took poor Lucas away, I was even rewarded with a Sims 4 game over screen. More like a pop-up. I’d never experienced this before and found it all curious.
I could have exited and rolled back to an earlier save then took more care to see that Lucas didn’t befall such tragedy. Instead, I decided to play through it – now the Cottage was haunted!
Haunted Cottage Life
I did a quick search across random single Sims and found Ryder Goth. Thinking it was ironic that a Goth would be the next to move into this tragic cottage, I did so without looking at any Sims details.
Ryder is not too thrilled by the scene that welcomes him. An urn on the floor and several pieces of furniture that need to be replaced due to fire.
It’s only when I start to play him a bit, getting the place cleaned up, that I discover Ryder is a vampire Sim. I would have likely not have chosen him if I’d known that – I’d rather have played this content without the vampire content overlapping.
But it was what it was. I decided to roll with it and see if I could help a ghost and vampire friendship blossom.
I discovered that somehow, Ryder had come with the trait that allowed him to walk in sunlight unharmed. I’m not sure how that happened, but seeing that was a trait I usually went for early for any vampire I played, it helped out significantly.
I picked up with Ryder where I left off with Lucas. Ryder now had to start all over making connections with the animals around the cottage and learn to garden. He actually adjusted to cottage life quite well, to be honest.
In the meantime, the ghost of Lucas would appear from time to time in the night. Because he died to a cooking fire, it seems his ghost is stuck doing nothing but cooking food over and over. Especially white cakes, which he leaves sitting around the counters if he manages to finish them.
The process of cooking gets him riled up and angry. When his spirit turns red, he then starts to engage in all sorts of more violent activity such as knocking over trash cans and possessing items in the house to break them.
At first, it’s hard for Ryder to befriend Lucas. This is because Lucas was a bit of a celebrity in life. The way celebrity levels work makes it almost impossible for a Sims who is also not some sort of celebrity to introduce themselves successfully.
So, I had Ryder break into the Fame system just a little bit. A few posts to Simstagram bolstered his following, and that seems to have been enough to finally let him introduce himself to Lucas.
Now they are well on their way to becoming friends.
Since then, Lucas has been a little more helpful around the house whenever he appears. He even helps the crops to grow, taking care of gardening just like he did in his living years.
In the meantime, Ryder has found a nice girl to settle down with. They got married and well… this is kinda where I left their story for now.
I need to figure out what I want to do with this household as having all this influx of cash is going against what I was aiming for when I wanted a simple living challenge.
Also, I’m considering reversing Ryder’s vampire curse. On one hand, it makes things super easy since he really doesn’t have as many Sims needs – he can stay up all night and all day without needing to rest if he doesn’t use up any of his vampiric energy.
And on the other hand, if Ryder is going to further the Goth legacy with a family, I’d really rather his kids not be vampires. I don’t have anything against playing vampires in Sims 4 – I even have a vamp family – but I’d rather do it as I choose to do it.
So this is where my Sims fail led me. Certainly not the story I expected when I decided to pick up this pack. But you know what? That’s just fine!