The latest addition to The Sims 4 is here thanks to the new Expansion Pack, Snowy Escape. Your Sims can now vacation – or live! – in the Japanese-inspired world of Mt. Komorebi. Introducing new festivals, new animations and snow sports, Snowy Escape promises the virtual vacation of a lifetime. Is this Expansion snow much fun, or is this another pack doomed to melt in the sun? Here’s our review of The Sims 4 Snowy Escape.
There’s no two ways about it: Mt. Komorebi is one of the most beautiful worlds we’ve seen in The Sims 4 so far. From its snow-capped mountains (which you can explore and ski down) to its bamboo forests and bustling villages, Mt. Komorebi is a wonderful snapshot of Japanese culture. Whether you’re exploring the bars, taking in the sights on a tranquil hike, or visiting one of the new festival events, there’s no shortage of beautiful and inspiring ways to soak in the ambience.
As mentioned, Mt. Komorebi is both a liveable world and one your Sims can vacation in, with three rental lots available for you to choose from. Whether your stay is a short one or a permanent one, there’s almost too many things to mention contained within the new world. I was surprised to find rivers which Sims can swim in, shrines which can be prayed at, and a wealth of new Japanese-inspired purchasable items, including gashapon capsules and lots of delicious foods. The Sims 4 Snowy Retreat provides us with one of the game’s most dynamic, vibrant and exciting worlds so far, and it’s one well worth taking the time to explore on foot.
The Sims 4 Snowy Escape leans heavily into its Japanese-inspired roots, something which is evidenced throughout every aspect of the world building. Residential Lots have also – for the first time – been designed by EA Game Changers, giving us wonderful pre-built lots that are hands-down the best we’ve seen from a Sims 4 Expansion. Thanks to the Game Changers, the environment artists have been able to put more time into the world we see, and where most Sims worlds feel flat and lifeless, Snowy Escape offers a vibrant and busy place to explore and enjoy.
Gameplay & New Features
The Sims 4 Snowy Escape introduces a number of new ways for Sims to interact with each other. The addition of Lifestyles and Sentiments gives your Sims more realism, adding to their personality and allowing them to create more meaningful bonds between each other (you can read more about Lifestyles and Sentiments here).
There’s also the addition of new Traits (“Adventurous” and “Proper”) and new Aspirations (“Sightseer” and “Extreme Sports Enthusiast”).
Meanwhile, new items like the Toasty Kotatsu Table and Hot Pot allow for friends and families to gather around and make mealtimes more of an activity than just another need to fulfil. The addition of hot springs are also welcome, and allow your Sims to make friends and deepen relationships while relaxing and unwinding in the warm waters.
New animations come into play with the new winter sports, which include sledding, skiiing and snowboarding. Use the ski lift (which is a rabbit hole) to travel to different heights of the snowy mountain and raise the relevant skills needed to perform the best tricks. Another nice touch is a new animation which sees Sims remove their shoes when entering their home, something which is very well-known in Japan.
There’s almost no end to the tiny and very welcome details there are to discover within Snowy Escape. Gashapon capsules might be fun to collect, and you can get rare collectibles from the mystery machines, but you might end up with an irate Sim should their capsule get stuck in the machine! There’s also some new events to be found, including taking damage from a demon or spying some forest spirits?! We’ll let you find those ones for yourself…
Despite spending close to eight hours with this Expansion, it still feels like there’s things to discover within Snowy Escape, and it’s been a long time since I’ve been so impressed with a Sims 4 Expansion Pack.
As expected, Snowy Escape welcomes a whole host of exciting new items, both for Create-A-Sim and for Build and Buy Mode. Everything you need to create your ideal Japanese-inspired home is here, and as evidenced by the Lot builds, you’ll be left wanting for very little.
New clothing and accessories also lend themselves to either the Japanese aesthetic or the winter weather, both of which suit the Pack and its world perfectly. There’s a handful of special clothing items which can be unlocked during the new Mt. Komorebi festivals, but not enough to make you feel like you’re being locked out of content should you not want to take part.
If you’re not into the Japanese look, there’s still some items you might use in everyday Sims living, but the majority of the new additions do lean towards Japanese culture and its aesthetic.
The Sims 4 Snowy Escape introduces new gameplay elements, a world that’s filled with wonder and – most importantly – there’s a million and one things to do within it. With its added focus on mindfulness and relaxing activities for your Sims, plus the addition of snow sports, The Sims 4 Snowy Escape is about as perfect as an Expansion Pack can get. A must-buy for Sims players, or the perfect starter pack for base game-owners, you can’t go wrong with Snowy Escape.
The Sims 4 Snowy Escape is available now for PS4, Xbox One and PC/Mac.
This copy of The Sims 4 Snowy Escape was provided by EA for review. This review of The Sims 4 Snowy Escape was conducted on PC.
Featured Image Credit: EA