The Sims 3

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The Sims 3
The Sims 3 cover
Developers
The Sims Studio
Expansions EA Salt Lake
macOS (OS X) TransGaming Inc.
Publishers
Electronic Arts
Engines
The Sims 3 Engine
Release dates
Windows June 2, 2009
macOS (OS X) June 2, 2009
The Sims 3 guide at StrategyWiki
The Sims 3 at Wikipedia
The Sims
The Sims 2000
The Sims Online 2002
The Sims 2 2004
Series:The Sims Stories 2007
MySims 2008
The Sims 3 2009
The Sims Medieval 2011
The Sims 4 2014

Key points

Strong modding community
Lacks native vsync functionality. It is advised to force vertical sync via the graphics control panel to lessen the strain on your GPU.

General information

The Sims 3 Official Forums
Answer HQ for The Sims 3 at EA.com
Answer HQ for The Sims series at EA.com (OS X)
The Sims Wiki
Steam Community Discussions

Availability[edit]

Source DRM Notes Keys OS
Retail
CD key
Can only be used x times
Requires online activation
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SecuROM 7 and SecuROM PA DRM, unknown machine limit. A De-Authorization Tool is available.
Dropped starting with patch 1.2.7.
Later expansions add Origin DRM.
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Windows
macOS (OS X)
Origin
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Windows
macOS (OS X)
Steam
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Windows

Version differences[edit]

List of all different versions and regions can be found on Wikipedia.

Downloadable content (DLC) and expansions

Name Notes
70s, 80s, & 90s Stuff
Windows
Ambitions
Windows
macOS (OS X)
Diesel Stuff
Windows
Fast Lane Stuff
Windows
Generations
Windows
macOS (OS X)
High-End Loft Stuff Also known as Design and Hi-Tech Stuff in Europe
Windows
Into the Future
Windows
macOS (OS X)
Island Paradise
Windows
macOS (OS X)
Katy Perry's Sweet Treats
Windows
Late Night
Windows
macOS (OS X)
Master Suite Stuff
Windows
Movie Stuff
Windows
Outdoor Living Stuff
Windows
Pets
Windows
macOS (OS X)
Seasons
Windows
macOS (OS X)
Showtime
Windows
macOS (OS X)
Supernatural
Windows
macOS (OS X)
Town Life Stuff
Windows
University Life
Windows
macOS (OS X)
World Adventures
Windows
macOS (OS X)

Essential improvements[edit]

Patches[edit]

Patch 1.67.2 are the latest patch available.
The patch notes can be found here here.

Large Address Aware[edit]

Improves stability on systems with at least 3GB RAM by allowing the application to use more than 2GB RAM.

Skip intro videos[edit]

Skip intro videos[citation needed]

Download and install this mod.

SMAA injector[edit]

Universal fix for most D3D9 and later games. Should provide better anti-aliasing especially with objects that use alpha effects e.g. hair and foliage; the default FSAA implementation unfortunately does not cover such effects.

Game data[edit]

Configuration file(s) location[edit]

System Location
Windows
macOS (OS X)

Save game data location[edit]

System Location
Windows %USERPROFILE%\Documents\Electronic Arts\The Sims 3\Saves
macOS (OS X) ~/Documents/Electronic Arts/The Sims 3/Saves

Save game cloud syncing[edit]

System Native Notes
Origin
Steam Cloud

Video settings[edit]

Graphics option Option WSGF Notes
Widescreen resolution
Multi-monitor
Use The Sims 3 FOV tool. HUD Position Affects Gameplay.
Ultra-widescreen
4K Ultra HD
UI does not scale with resolution and is extremely small in 4K.
Field of view (FOV)
Use The Sims 3 FOV tool.
Windowed
Borderless fullscreen windowed
Use Borderless Gaming.
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
Can be forced in driver control panel
Anti-aliasing (AA)
Vertical sync (Vsync)
Can be forced through graphics card control panel.
60 FPS
120+ FPS

Input settings[edit]

Keyboard and mouse Native Notes
Remapping
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Mouse acceleration
No mouse acceleration.
Mouse sensitivity
Mouse input in menus
Mouse Y-axis inversion
Controller
Controller support
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.

Audio settings[edit]

Audio options Native Notes
Separate volume controls
Surround sound
Up to 5.1 when zoomed in.
Subtitles
No intelligible dialog. All in-game dialog uses the fictional Simlish language.
Closed captions
Sound effects accompanied by visual effects.
Mute on focus lost
Can be turned off

Localizations

Language UI Audio Sub Notes
English
Czech
Traditional Chinese
Danish
Dutch
Finnish
French
German
Greek
Hebrew
Hungarian
Italian
Japanese
Korean
Norwegian
Polish
Portuguese
Brazilian Portuguese
Russian
Spanish
Swedish
Thai

Issues fixed[edit]

You can find various fixes in this Steam Community Guide .
Many performanc issues can be fixed with mods. These include Overwatch, ErrorTrap, Traveler, Mastercontroller and DebugEnabler

Poor performance[edit]

Turn off online functionality
  1. Open the ingame settings
  2. Go to general settings
  3. Turn off shop mode, lessons, usage sharing, memories and interactive loading screens
  4. Go to online settings
  5. Turn off online notifications

World Adventures Region Error[edit]

Incorrect Region Codes can be fixed with a simple registry tweak.
World Adventures Region Error[citation needed]
  1. Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\The Sims\The Sims 3
  2. In the right hand pane, double-click on SKU
  3. Change the value to either 1 or 2 or 3 or 5 or 7 (depending on your version of expansion pack*.)
  4. Try to install the expansion pack again.

Region Codes

  • North America (languages: en-US, fr-FR, es-MX)
  • Europe (languages: en-US, fr-FR, es-ES, de-DE, it-IT, nl-NL, sv-SE, da-DK, no-NO, fi-FI, pl-PL, pt-PT, hu-HU, cs-CZ, pt-BR, el-GR, ru-RU)
  • East Asia (languages: en-US, ko-KR, zh-TW)
  • Japan (languages: en-US, ja-JP)
  • Worldwide (languages: en-US, fr-FR, es-ES, es-MX, de-DE, it-IT, nl-NL, sv-SE, da-DK, no-NO, fi-FI, pl-PL, pt-PT, hu-HU, cs-CZ, pt-BR, el-GR, ru-RU, ko-KR, zh-TW, ja-JP, th-TH)

Other information[edit]

API[edit]

Technical specs Supported Notes
Direct3D 9
Shader Model support 2.0
64-bit executable

Mods[edit]

The Sims 3 attracts a large modding community, allowing further customization features. Unfortunately, even properly designed mods could increase the chances of crashes and errors in the game. Mods have a major impact on loading time and stability, and should be used with discretion if you are having issues with the game.
AwesomeMod - A large compilation of mods and small tweaks. More information can be found at The Sims Wikia and Matywikka (archived)

Mod resources[edit]

The Sims 3 Exchange - The official website for sharing user-made content (sims, households, clothing and etc.). The website uses the Sims 3 launcher to download and install custom content. Both the exchange and Sims 3 launcher require the same account.
Mod The Sims - Also hosts mods for The Sims 2 and The Sims 4.
NRaas - A huge compilation of tweaks, tools and bug fixes

Tools[edit]

Official[edit]

These tools were created by EA and are hosted on the games official website.
Create a World (Beta)

Unofficial[edit]

More tools can be found here

Better performance[edit]

SaveCleaner

NRaas[edit]

Overwatch
Error Trap
Tempest

System requirements[edit]

VRAM requirements do not apply to integrated GPUs.
Windows
Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) XP SP2 Vista, 7, 8.1
Processor (CPU) Intel Pentium 4 2.0 GHz P4
Pentium D 2.6 GHz, Intel Core 2 Duo 1.8 GHz
Intel Pentium 4 2.4 GHz
Intel Pentium D 2.6 GHz
System memory (RAM) 1 GB 1.5 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 7.1 GB 32 GB (with all DLC)
Video card (GPU) ATI Radeon 9600 series
GMA 3 series
128 MB of VRAM
Shader model 2.0 support
macOS (OS X)
Minimum
Operating system (OS) 10.5.7 (Leopard)
Processor (CPU) Intel Core 2 Duo
System memory (RAM) 2 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 7.1 GB
Video card (GPU) ATI Radeon X1600
Nvidia GeForce 7300 GT
Intel Integrated GMA X3100
128 MB of VRAM

References