"The Sims 4" Walkthrough: Guide to Death and Killing Your Sims
Death. It is, for all sims, the eventual end. No sim can avoid death forever; indeed, no sim should try to avoid death forever, as it is, in most cases, the natural conclusion to a life well lived. That said, not every death in The Sims 4 is natural, and many of them are the result of some poor judgement on your sims’ part (or, perhaps, malicious intent on your own).
Below is a listing of the ways your sim can die in The Sims 4, as well as some other accompanying mechanics. Dying in The Sims 4 is really really difficult compared to some of the previous iterations of the game, so you often have your work cut out for you to off a sim.
Sims have six ages: Baby, Child, Teen, Young Adult, Adult, and Elder. Once a sim reaches Elder they run the risk of dying of old age, something sims can only avoid by turning off aging in the main menu. Click on your sim’s Simology tab (bottom-right corner of the screen) to see how long your sim has before they ‘age up’, which, in the case of an Elder sim, is the end of the road.
Still in the Elder bracket, it’s possible to kill your older sims through sheer exhaustion. If you set your Elder sim to work out in any way, they will eventually become Dangerously Tired for several hours, typically four. If you continue to press your sim to exercise or otherwise exert themselves there’s a chance the sim will die. Note that it’s quite difficult to kill a sim this way, since the game will not allow you to choose most strenuous activities for a Dangerously Tired sim. It’s more likely that the sim will have to be stupid and kill themselves. Ways to gain Dangerously Tired include:
- Using a weight machine
- Woo Hooing
- Strenuous cleaning
Most players will discover early on that broken objects around the house can be repaired by sims using the Handiness skill. This is no problem with the plumbing, but sims who attempt to fix electronics (televisions, fridges, ovens, stereos, that sort of thing) without a decently high Handiness skill (five or more) run the possibility of becoming either Singed or Seriously Fried when their repair efforts backfire. These effects last for several hours. If the sim attempts to fix anything else with these Moodlets in place, they will be immediately electrocuted once the repair is complete. Zap.
For obvious reasons, your sims like to eat. Regularly. Often, even. If a sim is deprived of food for a long period of time, roughly two days (it may vary), they will become Ravenous. From that point on the sim has twenty-four hours to eat something. If they don’t, the sim will die. Death by hunger is very difficult to accomplish unless you purposely want to kill your sim, in which case you’ll probably just pen ‘em up in a room with no doors and leave them to die. Villain.
Sims don’t like fire. Should a fire break out in your home or on the road, sims will start to freak out, gain some powerful negative Moodlets, and attempt to run away. If they can’t run away, or if you order them back into the area with the fire (not immediately available, but it will pop up after enough time) the sim can catch fire. If they aren’t put out quickly enough they’ll burn to death. Yow. You can avoid this put putting out fires with an extinguisher, always an option for sims, or by installing fire alarms / a sprinkler system in the rooms of your house. Fires can be started in the following ways:
- When anything electronic breaks down, though the chance of a fire is pretty small.
- If the oven breaks in particular, or if your sim somehow mucks up while cooking.
- If a sim crashes after landing a rocket. You can ensure a crash by having one of your sims use the Mischief options Stuff Fruit in Exhaust Port or Sabotage Landing Stabilizers (in the former case your sim needs a piece of fruit or a vegetable to perform the action). The chances that a sim will die of fire under these circumstances are, nevertheless, fairly low.
- Fire can travel through walls and will quickly wreck your house if not extinguished, so unless you want your sims’ possessions to fry, it’s wise to crack out extinguishers on the double.
If your sim is an exceptional gardener, or if you send sims into space on a regular basis, you may wind up with a Cowplant Berry. Plant the Berry and water it regularly and, within a few days, a Cowplant will grow. These hefty creatures are friendly to sims… at least unless you forget to feed ‘em daily. Neglect a Cowplant and it will attempt to lure sims over with a piece of cake, dangled tantalizingly from the Cowplant’s mouth. If a sim takes the bait - or if you make them take the bait - the Cowplant will eat the sim. Every time this happens the Cowplant will steal the sim’s current emotion and turn it into a handy item. There is, however, a good chance that the Cowplant will not spit the sim back out again. If this happens… yeah. In short, feed these things.
Whenever your sim does something embarrassing they may become Embarrassed. That’s bad enough on its own - but if the sim continues to be Embarrassed, Very Embarrassed, and eventually Mortified, there’s a chance they will die of embarrassment. It takes a lot of terrible circumstances for a sim to reach Mortified, and they need to stay Mortified for a decent while to die of embarrassment. If you want to avoid death, give your sim some alone time. Embarrassment piles up much more quickly when the sim is around other sims, especially strangers. Ways for your sim to become Embarrassed include:
- Walking in while someone unfamiliar is using a toilet
- Walking in while someone unfamiliar is showering
- Walking in while two other sims are Woo Hooing
- Choosing Embarrassing conversation options (depends on the sims in question, though Funny / Mischief options do the trick nicely)
- Having an Embarrassing conversation in general
- Having a low Hygiene score around other sims
- Peeing one’s self, particularly in public - this on its own, depending on the circumstances, may be enough to kill your sim
Sims who have a lot of fun gain the Playful emotion, which, in most cases, is a good thing. Sims that specialize in comedic ventures will love Playful. That said, a sim that becomes too Playful - say, Very Playful, or, eventually, Hysteric - is in trouble. Once a sim reaches Hysteric they either need to calm down or risk choking to death on their own laughter. Playful bonuses stack with each other, and it’s surprisingly easy to rack up a lot of bonuses in a short period of time. Methods for doing so include:
- Acting Goofy
- Listening to comedians
- Telling Jokes, either sim-to-sim or on a microphone
- Reading funny books (Comedy genre)
- Watching Funny Videos on computers
- Watching Comedy on TVs
When things don’t go their way, sims get Angry. Anger is cumulative, so the worse things get, the more Angry the sim will become. Angry escalates to Very Angry, and then peaks at Enraged. Once a sim is Enraged there’s a chance - assuming they don’t calm down, usually from exercise or venting - that they’ll drop dead. Boom. There are a fair number of ways to make a sim Angry:
- Choose Mean conversation options with other sims to get into an argument
- Suffer Mean conversation options with other sims to get into an argument
- Use Mischief options on sims who aren’t interested in being mocked
- Escalate the conversation with additional options (Provoke, Rant Logically, Yell At, Mock, etc.)
- Get into Fights
- Be cheated on by a significant other (and catch them)
The Grim Reaper
Regardless of how your sim died, the Grim Reaper will show up to collect their soul in the aftermath. If the Reaper is left to do this he will leave either an urn (indoors) or a gravestone (outdoors) behind. Either item can be stored in a living sim’s inventory, and when they’re deployed in the world your remaining sims will sometimes mourn over the urn / gravestone and become Sad. The only way to prevent this from happening is to have another sim run up and Plead with the Grim Reaper. If successful, the dead sim will be returned to life.
(Note that the Grim Reaper will stick around for a while after collecting a dead sim, successful or not. During this time you can have your sims interact with the Reaper and, with enough work, turn him into a friend. This will net your sim the Hello, Darkness, My Old Chum achievement. You don’t have much time before the Reaper leaves, regardless of the quality of the conversation, so put your best sim on the job. All relationships with the Reaper reset to zero shortly after he leaves, so invitations to hang out and romance are out of the question.)
Once your dead sim has been reduced to an urn or a gravestone you have the option of Releasing their Spirit. Doing this will cause the urn or gravestone to disappear forever, taking the sim with it. This is quite final…
… but it need not be the end. If you want your departed sim back, enrol one of your living sims in the Bestselling Author Aspiration. Once the Aspiration has been completed your sim will gain the Poetic Bonus Trait, allowing them to write The Book of Life at a computer. Though they take a while to create, Books of Life can be used via Capture Epic Saga to copy down the stories of still-living sims. Once that sim dies, use Summon on their Book of Life to bring them back to life. As easy as that… though there’s one major caveat: the sim can’t already be dead. The Book of Life has to be used on sims who are still alive. Sims that have died without a Book of Life ready to go are, for now, gone for good.