The Sims 4: Horse Ranch expansion is full of western charm | Digital Trends

Sims players had long hoped to see horses introduced The Sims 4, especially after they are initially cooked The Sims 3: Pets expansion pack in 2011. That long wait is over. The Sims 4′s new expansion pack, Horse farmbrings horses into the current generation of gaming with a whole host of new gameplay and storytelling options for horse lovers.

At a press preview event, several Sims 4 team members, including production manager JoAnna Lio and lead producer George Pigula, walked members of the press through the expansion pack offerings: from the new world of Chestnut Ridge, building the perfect ranch, to gameplay mechanics how to ride, train and bond with horses .

Horse farm brings with it a focus on ranch life and connecting with horses in new ways, through bonding with your horses to compete together and empowering players to build the ranch of their dreams. For new and longtime players alike, the pack seems to expand on the previous iteration of The Sims horses, opening the door to a relaxing and chaotic ranch narrative.

A large and vast world

The world introduced in Horse farm it’s called Chestnut Ridge. There are three neighborhoods in the world to be found with many horse-related names including Galloping Gulch, New Appaloosa, and Rider’s Glen. Just as you would expect from a ranching expansion, Chestnut Ridge draws heavily on American Midwestern landscapes with lots of rocky outcroppings, dusty trails, and a long, winding river.

And while we haven’t been able to look at each different lot (sections in each Sims world where players can build and design homes or community buildings), there are a total of 13 lots to be found in Chestnut Ridge. Players who like to build on larger lots will be thrilled, with a new 50 by 50 lot and a vacant 6 by 64 lot available at Galloping Gulch and Rider’s Glen, respectively.

A Sim stands next to a horse and brushes it.  The horse is tan in color with white markings and a brown mane and tail.

One thing that stands out at Chestnut Ridge is the fact that there are lots of wide open spaces that are perfect for horses to roam. The team behind Horse farm He pointed out that neighborhoods were created to have these larger spaces specifically for Sims and horses to explore together, also noting that players will really want to take the time to explore the trails for discovering activities and to practice their riding skills. now available with the package.

Players will find a busy social scene within the world, with a number of new Sims calling Chestnut Ridge home. And while visiting those Sims on their home lots is an option, there are plenty of ways to meet them around, including a dance bar, the Equestrian Park, and even just wandering around town or taking a horseback ride. .

Go around your ranch

The real protagonists of Horse farm they are, of course, the horses themselves. Horses, just like cats and dogs before them, are considered family members, so they will occupy one of eight available spots in each Sims home (there are currently no plans to expand the number of family members in The Sims 4). They’re fully customizable within Create a Sim, where you can choose from over 30 real-world horse breeds, like the Fresian, or you can play around with all the details like coat color, body mass, mane, and tails to create your own custom horse. And just like with Sims, cats and dogs, horses also have unique traits that can be chosen such as Brave, Defiant, Fearful and Mellow.

A full shot of the equestrian center in The Sims 4: Horse Ranch.  It is a large white building with a green root and barn doors.  In front there is a fenced riding arena.

Crafting horses isn’t the only way to get your new four-legged friend. Players can buy, save and breed horses. Horse breeding will reveal some special traits that you can only see in a foal or horse that has been bred. Horses also have four different skills that can be developed: agility, jumping, endurance and temperament. All of these skills will contribute to how well a horse does when competing in one of the many equestrian competitions players will find at the equestrian center.

Most of the competitions are Western-style, although you’ll also find some nods to English-style driving in the expansion pack. There are five different competitions to compete in: Barrel Racing, Show Jumping, Endurance Racing, Western Pleasure and the Ultimate Horse Championship. And while we haven’t had a chance to see the details of the competitions, players can expect to receive rewards for winning the competitions, including simoleons (the in-game currency) and decorative plaques.

The core of ranch living

Horse farm it seems to bring a lot to the table, in both the big and small details. In addition to all the new horse-related additions, there’s also quite a bit to dig into when it comes to ranch life. There are new Traits and Aspirations for Sims, including Horse Whisperer and Championship Knight, respectively, and Expert Nectar Maker.

Nectar, for those of you who may have never encountered this before, is the equivalent of wine in The Sims. In Horse farm, Sims will be able to grow ingredients that they can use to make nectar, either to enjoy them for themselves or to make a profit. You may also be able to learn some secret nectar recipes from other Sims found in Chestnut Ridge.

In the background is a blue stable.  A horse is being stroked by a Sim dressed in green, a child is walking towards another Sim who is shearing a sheep, and a child Sim is riding a horse on the right side of the picture.  A fifth Sim is mashing ingredients in a large bucket to make nectar.

Miniature goats and sheep will also help fill your ranch. They can be milked and sheared, respectively, and also provide wool and milk if the players have any Cottage life also the expansion pack.

All the tasks required to run a ranch in this expansion pack certainly seem to add up quickly which is why it was nice to see you’ll be able to take on a hand of the ranch. Ranch hands can be hired from a council in town and can help maintain horses, harvest plants, repair items, and more! For players who want to move work around the ranch so they can focus on bonding and training with their horses, bringing a helping hand to the ranch seems to be very helpful so you can live your best horse-loving life, be it through exploring trails, racing or building the perfect ranch.

The Sims 4: Horse Farm the expansion pack will launch on July 20 on all platforms.

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