How The Sims became the internet's most exciting place to eat

Loel Phelps, design director for The Sims, said his team uses consultants, research and employee input from diverse backgrounds to decide...


Loel Phelps, design director for The Sims, said his team uses consultants, research and employee input from diverse backgrounds to decide which foods and kitchen and dining items best fit the spirit of the game. Game.

“The Sims is about real, lived experiences, so once we have a theme or setting, I like to reach out to those around me or explore food trends on Instagram and TikTok,” Phelps wrote. in an email. “What are their favorite signature dishes? What do people eat for breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner in this environment? Why and how do they eat these foods, and do we have the right tools in a virtual kitchen to prepare, serve and eat them? »

Writers then create detailed descriptions of these foods, explaining how they are prepared, as well as the real-world cultures they come from. You want to know everything about pho, nigiri, choripan? The Sims can be your guide.

Since The Sims might be the first place some players encounter these foods, it’s important that they receive as accurate and precise a description of the dishes as possible, said Ms. Pearson, Vice President of The Sims, adding that the developers of the game would never describe lumpia or banh mi as “just a bun or a sandwich”.

“It means different things,” she said. “They are made differently. And I think that’s a way for us to also recognize this variety that exists in the world and say, “Yeah, we see you.”

Like reality, the world of Sims is imperfect. Some foods are so pixelated that they are not so appetizing. (“Some of them just look nasty,” Ms. Sims said.) And most of the dishes players cook most often — like spaghetti, pancakes, clam chowder and tuna casserole – still reflect a white American palate.

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