The Sims 4: Best Mods For the Free-to-Play Game

The Sims 4 might have plenty of expansions that add vacations, werewolves, and everything in between to the base game, but some of the best content is offered by modders. 

The Sims 4
Photo: EA

At the time that The Sims 4 was released in 2014, it was missing a ton of features that gamers loved from the previous Sims title. In the years that followed, Maxis and EA released expansion packs of every shape and size to provide new careers, clothes, and houses. You would think that eight years is more than enough to produce a new sequel, but instead, the companies decided to give everyone the gift of Sims 4 for free. It’s odd that we’re still waiting for a new Sims game, but Sims 4 surprise free-to-play pivot means that everyone gets to enjoy the game’s very best mods.

Even though the barrier for entry into the latest Sims game has been lowered to “nothing,” anyone who downloads the game is still downloading the same, flawed title that was released in 2014. While Maxis hasn’t spent its time developing The Sims 5 (as far as we know), modders have been busy improving The Sims 4 base experience in ways that even some of the game’s official expansions haven’t topped. Here are some of the best Sims 4 mods out there.

MC Command Center

Usually, mods only change or add only one gameplay feature. But every now and then you will find a mod that provides a suite of alterations. MC Command Center is that kind of mod.

Deaderpool’s MC Command Center (MCCC for short) is a series of modules that alter and improve Sims 4 characters. These changes can restrict the clothes NPCs can wear, alter the employment rates of different age groups, and even control NPC actions (up to a certain point). This mod provides so many options it might seem intimidating at first glance, but once you get used to all of its bells and whistles, you will wonder how you ever played The Sims 4 without it.

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UI Cheats Extension

These days, gamers associate cheats with wall hacks, aimbots, and other programs that give players unfair advantages in online arenas. Once upon a time, cheats were fun extras that were used for a laugh. The Sims 4 was released more innocent time and still allows players to give themselves as much money, stats, and real estate as they want (assuming they can remember the cheat code).

The UI Cheats Extension mod, developed by weerbesu, does exactly as its title suggests: activates cheats using the game’s user interface. Not only does this mod remove the need to type in lengthy codes via a hidden command prompt, but it also prevents the risk of misspelling the cheats. The Sims 4 cheat codes tend to be long and resemble coding text, so you’d be surprised how easy it is to mess them up. 

The UI Cheats Extension mod isn’t for everyone (especially players who want to play without cheating and earn achievements). But for everyone else, it’s a quick and easy alternative to typing in cheats.

Personality Mods

The Sims 4’s titular Sims have simulated personalities that make each interaction unique. At least, they’re supposed to. In practice, Sims’ interactions are usually determined by their goldfish-like attention spans and the player’s random whims. Unless you download personality-specific mods, that is.

PolarBearSims’ mod, Have Some Personality Please!, alters how Sims interact with one another in the simplest way possible: removing their ability to engage in idle chat. That seemingly banal exclusion forces every Sim, from player-controlled characters to NPCs, to use their moods and traits in daily interactions. And, PolarBearSims also provides several add-ons for their mod to push the personality simulator aspect of The Sims 4 even further. Want to work your way up to certain romantic interactions? There’s an add-on for that.

Another popular (and great) personality-driven mod is roBurky’s Meaningful Stories. Unlike Have Some Personality Please, which focuses on interactions, Meaningful Stories reworks The Sims 4’s emotions and mood systems. With this mod enabled, events stick with Sims longer, which makes them feel happy or depressed for in-game days on end. Likewise, their personality traits either help them (or prevent them) from achieving their goals. The purpose of this mod, as hinted at by the title, is to turn each game of The Sims 4 into a character-driven drama fueled by the emotions and personalities of every character. In other words, this mod is a must for soap opera fans or anyone who just wants more realistic Sims.

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Body Adjustment Mods

The Sims games are supposed to let players create any kind of character they want. At least, that’s what the commercials claim, but the reality is much more limited. No matter how different characters look in The Sims 4, they don’t look different enough, especially when compared to…you know…real humans. Thankfully, several mods fix that limitation.

One must-own mod for gamers disappointed by The Sims 4’s homogeneity is CmarNYC’s Morphmaker. This tool lets users create their own character meshes and then turns them into in-game character sliders and presets. While players can use Morphmaker to produce a wider variety of body shapes, they can also go ham with the mod and produce wild and wacky results that defy every law of biology. Of course, since Morphmaker’s results are so in-depth, the mod is complex and difficult to use by default, but that’s nothing a little practice can’t fix.

Another mod that adds spice to Sims 4 body shapes is the height mod. Two popular variations include Luumia Sims’ Height Slider + Extras mod and GODJUL1’s Height Slider mod. Both offer the same basic features, including options that make characters taller or shorter than normal. However, Luumia Sims’ version comes with a few extra sliders, hence its name. You can’t exactly turn your character into Paul Bunyan with these mods, but you can add a bit more reality to your Sims 4 experience.

Career mods

Maxis and EA have added several new career paths to The Sims 4, but they are all locked behind DLC. Who wants to pay $40 just so their Sim can become an actor? But even if you bought all of the game’s DLC, you still wouldn’t have access to 1/100th of all the jobs that exist in the real world. To fill in those gaps, you need mods.

There are honestly too many career mods out there to list, and no one site houses them all. On Mod the Sims alone you can find mods that let you turn a Sim into a journalist, web developer, baker, and dog groomer. The Sims Catalog, meanwhile, offers career mods for gamers interested in real estate, social services, and modeling.

Since no two modders are the same, your mileage will vary. While everyone won’t like one single career mod, rest assured there is one career mod out there for everyone.

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More Realistic Sims Mods

The Sims 4 is supposed to simulate life. After all, that feature is in the game’s name. However, the game is ultimately bound by countless restrictions. Despite characters working towards their futures in The Sims 4, none of them have a history, and their abilities are restricted to the whims of the programmers. Without the right mods, The Sims 4 is but a pale facsimile of reality.

Well, modder Kawaiistacie has produced quite a few mods that give The Sims 4 characters that extra spice of life and variety. Their The Life Decider mod, for example, gives player characters and NPCs alike some backstory. These include bonus skills, traits, and cash to help get them started on their career. This might not seem like much on the surface, but it helps create a wider variety of characters and make The Sims 4 seem less like, well, a simulation. 

Another Kawaiistacie mod focused on realism is Slice of Life. Whereas The Life Decider gives Sims an extra boost based on existing game features, Slice of Life adds to that list. The mod provides extra personalities, animations, and illnesses, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Ever wanted a Sim to get drunk, throw a party or watch a stream on a phone? You can do that with Slice of Life.

Of course, these mods really only scratch the surface. You can find plenty of other mods on the internet that might strike your fancy better than adding new careers or activating cheats in the UI. You can control pets, drive cars, and so much more. We’ll have more recommendations for you in the future, but if you can think of something you want to do in The Sims, odds are good that there’s a mod for that.