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In this sequel to the The Sims, Maxis has created an entirely new, 3D engine, similar to the console Sim games. The player can rotate the camera in a 360° view, or shuffle the camera to the left and to the right.

The Sims are also fully animated, articulated characters. They have a wide range of movements, most of which are humorous. Eating, drinking, going to the bathroom, getting kissed, proposing marriage, etc. with each having a specific animation for it.

The Sims 2 has an expanded Build mode. The player can now create large houses, going up to four floors, with new types of wallpapers, carpets, stairs, fireplaces, and more. The player can connect parts of their house via a deck or patio, or a balcony-type catwalk.

When first playing the game, the player can choose to move their family into a pre-made neighborhood with different themes, or they can create one from scratch. If the player has SimCity 4 and/or Rush Hour installed, they can import cities into The Sims 2 to use custom neighborhoods.

The biggest change to the game is aging and fears/aspirations. The Sims will now age, from a newborn, onto a toddler, then to a child, then to an adult, and then finally to a senior. The Sims will also eventually die of old age (although they can die earlier by other means), but there is a way to prolong a Sims youth.

Fears and aspirations are just that. Each Sim has different fears and aspirations that must be avoided and met, respectively. If a Sim has a fear of a loved one dying, the Sim will experience difficulty for a time after that person dies. If a Sim has aspirations to get to the top of the corporate ladder, the Sim will earn aspiration points, which eventually turn into a Platinum meter. When enough points have been reached, the player can buy special items, like a Money Tree which releases bags of money every so often. Meeting a Sims fear results in their aspiration points being lowered.

Sims also have memories, which they will use to remember things throughout the course of their lives. This can deeply impact gameplay depending on how the game is played.

The last major addition is the ability to create movies using Sims. The player can capture the Sims actions, and then edit the video to make a movie of sorts. The player has the option of adding special effects, like slow motion or blur.


The Sims 2 Windows When your Aspiration meter goes red, you have a breakdown and need to wait for the Therapist, who floats down from the sky.
The Sims 2 Windows You can also combine several types of roofs into one
The Sims 2 Windows The Social Bunny appears whenever your Social score is low, to help you get back on your feet.
The Sims 2 Windows This is what happens when you try to repair an electronic object with no Mechanical skill.  At least my wife is worried.

Promo Images

The Sims 2 Screenshot
The Sims 2 Render
The Sims 2 Screenshot
The Sims 2 Render


Alternate Titles

  • "模拟人生2" -- Chinese spelling (simplified)
  • "TS 2" -- Common abbreviation
  • "Os Sims 2" -- Portuguese title
  • "Los Sims 2" -- Spanish title
  • "Les Sims 2" -- French title
  • "Die Sims 2" -- German title
  • "De Sims 2" -- Dutch title

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

Escape to a better life Mario Duenaz (32) 4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars

Critic Reviews

UOL Jogos Sep 17, 2004 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars 100
GameZone Oct 04, 2004 9.4 out of 10 94
Pelit Oct, 2004 92 out of 100 92
1UP Sep 14, 2004 9 out of 10 90
Gamer 2.0 Sep 07, 2004 8.9 out of 10 89
Game Informer Magazine Nov, 2004 8.75 out of 10 88
ActionTrip Sep 17, 2004 87 out of 100 87
Game Revolution Sep 29, 2004 B+ 83
Gameplanet Sep 27, 2004 4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars 80
Gamekult Sep 20, 2004 7 out of 10 70


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Copy protection

Electronic Arts released The Sims 2 with a hard-coded protection that can actually detect if you are using a no-CD crack, CD drive emulator, or other similar tools for bypassing a CD copy protection check, and disables the game to something like a "shareware" version, in which you can play the game, create families etc, but Build Mode (for constructing your houses) and saving your game are disabled.


The description of a memory of "doing WooHoo" with a a service person such as a maid includes the sentence "Hey, what am I really paying for here???" This was originally removed due to ESRB issues, but apparently made it into the game.


The Sims 2 is used to make The Strangerhood, a machinima sitcom from the creators of the Halo-based sci-fi comedy Red vs. Blue.


Modifications to tweak a game to your needs are common practice, but some of the hacks in The Sims 2 have been spreading like viruses. Popular hacks allow you to keep multiple lovers without the issue of jealousy or let you be pregnant as a teenager. These need to be downloaded and installed, but others are spread unwillingly.

EA provides a feature to export your house to an online "Lot Exchange" to let other gamers admire your work. Unfortunately, hacked items and routines are included as well and some of them replace the default settings for the entire game. People reported their sims to be abducted by aliens every time they looked through a telescope, a single shot of espresso would fill every need and all sims were graced with eternal youth.

Therefore, similar to the virus scene, hack scanners and anti-hack cleaners have been developed, but often a complete uninstall is the only solution.


  • Characters from other Sim games make cameos in The Sims 2 through job "chance cards". For example, Malcolm Landgraab, a wealthy developer from SimCity 3000, is mentioned in one of these.
  • In the University expansion go to the create a student mode. See that guy in the portrait? That's the games creator Will Wright!.
  • If you are wondering about the pigs that are often floating in the sky when you are browsing through a neighbourhood (eg Pleasantview). The pigs are a reference to a very famous Pink Floyd cover for their album Animals which depicts a flying pig.
  • The town Veronaville is a parody of Shakespeares Romeo and Juliet and contains two equivalent families.

References to the game

  • The game is featured in the first episode of the fourth season of the US HBO drama series Six Feet Under. Arthur, an intern, is shown playing the game for about twenty seconds.
  • The Sims 2 was parodied in an episode of "Die Redaktion" (The Editorial Team), a monthly comedy video produced by the German gaming magazine GameStar. It was published on the DVD of issue 05/2008.


Having sold one million copies in a week, The Sims 2 was Electronic Arts' strongest launch up to date.


Weather was originally planned on being included, but was scrapped due to a bug that had it rain inside houses. It was re-introduced in the expansion The Sims 2: Seasons.


  • 4Players
    • 2004 – Best PC Simulation of the Year
  • Apple Design Award
    • 2006 - Best OS X Game
  • Computer Games Magazine
    • March 2005 - #6 Game of the Year
  • Computer Gaming World
    • March 2005 (Issue #249) – Strategy Game of the Year (General)
    • March 2005 (Issue #249) – Best Weapon of the Year Runner-Up (for the vacuum)
  • GameSpy
    • 2004 – #4 PC Game of the Year
  • Golden Joystick Awards
    • 2005 - Girl's Choice for 2005
Information also contributed by Agent5, Nelson340, Paul Graves, PCGamer77, piltdown_man, Rambutaan, Sciere and Vaelor

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JPaterson (9534) added The Sims 2 (Windows) on Sep 16, 2004
Other platforms contributed by Corn Popper (69011)