- Maxis has been bringing down the number of Expansion Packs released in a year in the past two years.
- The charts show that there has been not a single pack released in the month of April, ever.
- With 5 packs a year and 1 pack already released in the first quarter, nothing is missed.
- Missing the update in March is not to be made into a serious issue.
A lot was being made out when it was informed that Maxis did not plan to release an update for March 2020. Many began saying with a sense of certainty that the Sims 5 is around the corner and it was the end of the road for the Sims 4. However, this may not be the real scenario. When you dig into the records of the Sims 4 game, ever since it was released in 2014, some interesting patterns emerge.
Look at these two graphs about The Sims 4
Number of Sims 4 Expansion Packs since 2015. The first one shows the number of Expansion Packs or game updates the Sims 4 received year on year since 2015. You will find that the figure has come down from 8 in 2015 to just 5 each in 2018 and 2019. This is roughly one in each quarter. The game has received one update in 2020, and we are yet to be done with the first quarter. Therefore, why would anyone have an issue if an update did not appear in the month of March?
The second one is even more interesting. This plots the months of all the six years of the game’s existence and indicates how many updates including the DLC packs the Sims 4 received. You will find the month of April has had no release at all through these years. That by itself should be an eye-opener. If the month of April could be without a release for years, the month of March in one year could miss out on the update and it should be considered normal.
Aren’t These Abnormal Times?
There could be a straight forward explanation for the studio’s inability to release an update for the Sims 4 in March 2020 – Coronavirus. The virus that started in one region in China has virtually brought almost the entire world to a halt. Business establishments have been told to shut down, the staff asked to operate from their homes and no business activity worth its name is operational. Under these extraordinary conditions, if Maxis is unable to send out an update for a game, it should not be treated as a big deal. On the contrary, eyebrows would have been raised if the update had been released as if things were normal.
What are the Major Takeaways from the Current Scenario?
The developer Maxis and the publisher EA don’t seem to be in too much of a hurry to release the successor to the Sims 4 yet. It is true that the Sims 4 has been around for 6 years and since it has been receiving a lot of updates and Expansion Packs, it is still popular. Due to disruptions in the operations, the update pack for March could not have come out. It may come out in April 2020, breaking the past pattern of giving the month of April a miss.
The Sims 5 might still be very much a priority for the studio and work could be going on. The actual release of Sims 5 may happen by the end of 2020. Until then, fans need to have patience and understanding.