In a completely free update, The Sims 4 is introducing a new sexual orientation feature eight years after release.
“As a team, we hold creativity, discovery, inclusivity and play as core values and strive every day to celebrate diversity, equity and inclusion for our people and community. With that in mind, we’re delighted to bring the Sexual Orientation feature to all Simmers. Between this update and the recent pronouns update, we’re taking several strides forward into being a game that respects and celebrates the nuance and colour of everyday life,” said The Sims 4 design lead, SimGuruJessica.
The new sexual orientation feature will allow you to assign “attraction parameters” for your Sim. These include the following prompts:
- My Sim is attracted to
- My Sim is exploring romantically
- My Sim is interested in WooHoo with
In response to still only having two gender options in The Sims 4, SimGuruJessica stated,
I’ll try to be very transparent with this one. This is due to technical limitations. As stated above, mechanically, non-binary Sims don’t yet exist in TS4. You still have to make a binary gender selection for your Sim at creation, regardless of pronoun settings. We hope that we’ve shown our commitment to improving representation of gender identities with features such as Gender Customization, which allows you to modify physical frame, clothing preferences, pregnancy and toilet use options. We look at the pronouns update as another important step toward better representation of non-binary genders, but we also acknowledge that pronouns are not the same thing as gender identities.
TS4 is 8 years old at this point, and reliant on systems that were originally architected with a gender binary in mind. In the intervening years, we’ve taken important steps such as Gender Customization, Pronouns and now Sexual Orientation. It’s a journey still in progress, with many more steps to go. Proper mechanical systems to fully support non-binary Sims is another step in that journey.ea.com
Though still not completely inclusive, EA is taking steps in the right direction that hopefully move faster than slow. As the EA post states, “It is important to acknowledge that these are steps in a journey that we are still mapping out.”
The Sims 4 Sexual Orientation will launch alongside the release of High School Years on July 28th, though you don’t require the expansion for the free download.