The Sims 5 job listing hints at free-to-play Project Rene

The Sims 5 job listing hints at free-to-play Project Rene
Images via Maxis

Written by 

Tom Chapman


28th Jun 2023 15:18

It sounds like we could save a few Simoleons, as a new job listing suggests that The Sims 5 will be free-to-play. We know barely anything about the mysterious Project Rene, and as The Sims 4 keeps dishing out the content like its Horse Ranch expansion, the next chapter is likely a long way off.

Since 2000, The Sims has made bank on the relatively simple premise of selling a base game and then dishing out multiple expansions. More recently, the various furniture packs have added even more zeroes to the bank. So, how would a free-to-play The Sims 5 work? 

The Sims 5 hints at free-to-play release

A new job listing has appeared on the EA hiring site, with the gaming giant hiring a Head of Monetization & Marketplace - specifically for Project Rene. The ideal candidate will "own pricing of all content in this free-to-enter game, ensuring we have an optimal pricing and content architecture."

They'll also have to "Provide guidance to content teams on in-game content needs to meet player demand," suggesting that while The Sims 5 might be free, you'll be paying a lot more for those extra bells and whistles. It's not too surprising when you look at the success of Fortnite and Call of Duty: Warzone pulling in the big bucks. 

The news hasn't gone down well in The Sims community, with one fan moaning, "I'd honestly rather a paid base game, I feel the same about Disney Dreamlight Valley. It's probably just going to be full of microtransactions.

Another worried fan added, "I hate to be like that but it sounds like people in this comment section have never heard of The Sims 3 store that costs 75k to max out," and a third said, "I'm so sick of microtransactions and a million dlc kits that add nothing to the game. If that's the case I'm probably not going to participate."

The Sims 4 is already free-to-play

The Sims 4 Growing Together
Click to enlarge

We probably should've seen this one coming, thanks to EA making The Sims 4 free-to-play as of 2022. While a seemingly bold move, making The Sims 4 free-to-play after seven years of service was a clever way to reinvigorate the fan base and lure in newcomers with an ongoing slate of paid expansions.

Still, there are worries about just how much paid-for DLC content there will be in The Sims 5 and whether we'll go down the dreaded microtransaction route to improve moods, get that promotion at work, or add another wing to the house. Following the Battlefront II loot box scandal, EA doesn't exactly have a good reputation.

The Sims Mobile is notorious for microtransactions, and with Project Rene teasing a crossover between PC and mobile, the writing was already on the wall. It's true that The Sims 4 didn't do this when going free-to-play, but we'll have to wait and see whether The Sims 5 will be a renovation nightmare or give us our Barbie's DreamHouse.

Tom is Trending News Editor at GGRecon, with an NCTJ qualification in Broadcast Journalism and over seven years of experience writing about film, gaming, and television. With bylines at IGN, Digital Spy, Den of Geek, and more, Tom’s love of horror means he's well-versed in all things Resident Evil, with aspirations to be the next Chris Redfield.

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