On July 21, EA published a update for The Sims 4’s policy regarding content creation and modification. While the post claims that EA understands mods are an “important part” of the player experience, and outlines how players can re-enable mods once they’ve been automatically disabled following the latest update of The Sims 4, it also established a new set of rules for content creators and modders – and not everyone was happy about them.
Under EA’s new guidelines, The Sims 4 custom content creators are no longer allowed to promote mods “in a manner that suggests they are endorsed by or affiliated with The Sims, Maxis, or Electronic Arts. ” As a result, creators are prohibited from using “any game logo or trademark, including versions of the main puzzle or art design” to advertise their creations.
While this can be inconvenient for modders, the second set of terms is much more controversial. According to the post, all content created by modders must now be freely distributed to the public. Mods are no longer “sold, licensed, or rented for a fee”, nor can they contain features that support “currency transactions of any kind”. EA added that creators are free to “cover development costs” by running ads on their site to generate revenue and donate – as long as any in-game content they create There are no paywalls out there.
Soon after the announcement was made, content creators began to speculate on whether this would affect the community’s popular early access pay model, in which creators provide mods and custom content on sites like Patreon to paid subscribers for a certain period of time before opening them up for public access. Earlier today, Twitter user MarlynSims96 shared a conversation they had with an EA support agent suggesting this was the case.
While EA hasn’t added any provisions explicitly stating the prohibited early access model, this tweet – along with the new “non-commercial” claim – means it’s likely to be the case. this. While some members of the community celebrate the decisionwill essentially make all modified content free for all players, others concerned by the new policies.
“Early Access pricing is now being targeted by EA when it wasn’t an issue before,” The Sims 4 architect and renowned EA creator KawaiiFoxita told GameSpot. “Using Early Access as a way to secure some money for the work these creators are doing is, to me, a much better approach, and I fully support the creators.” create pay for the sake of having early access to their works This is something I don’t think EA should get rid of. Everyone deserves some form of compensation for their work and time. they’ve dropped out, so early access is a good way to do that.”
For some, that compensation has proven important to their day-to-day lives. In the family Patreon’s post Regarding the policy changes, JellyPaws creators wrote that Patreon’s funding is in part helping them pay rent, medication, and other necessities.
JellyPaws writes: “Early access to Patreon was one of the only reasons I was able to pay for my own medicine, food, pet care and an apartment so I could live next to my dad. disabled to take care of him”. “It’s really upsetting to see early access removed but I hope you all can continue to support my work, even without early access privileges.”
JellyPaws is one of many modders of The Sims 4 that used Patreon and the early access model as a means of income, but is now removing the perks due to EA’s new policies. Another modder, ChewyButterfly, found themselves in a similar situation.
“Patreon has helped me buy the smallest amount of groceries in the past few months as my work keeps falling,” ChewyButterfly wrote on Twitter. Patreon. “I really hope EA releases another statement clarifying early access, as they don’t state especially that it is not allowed. But until then, no more early access. “
The Sims 4 community on Reddit has mostly praised creators like JellyPaws and ChewyButterfly, who have chosen to pivot with EA’s new regulations – even if there is frustration with those who have “abused” the feewall protocol, thus placing creators into this situation.
If some mod creators don’t abuse, use permanent fee wall, put virus/malware tracker in mod/cc, harass, leak personal information… If they don’t, this won’t happen…
– Ginie62 (@ Ginie62) August 1, 2022
However, there are quite a few creators who are choosing to maintain current business practices. Felixandre, one of the most popular The Sims 4 content creators, did not mention the policy changes on Twitter or their Patreon. Currently, Felixandre has a massive 4,433 patrons who each contribute at least $5 a month to the creator. Similar, AggressionKitty (who has 649 patrons paying at least $6 a month), Hey Harrie (4,293 patrons paying at least $2 a month), and Sixam CC did not mention the intention to stop. MaxisMatchCCWorld and ADeepIndigo both shared their thoughts on EA’s new policy for their Patreon, but have stated that they will continue to do business as usual until it becomes clear that the early access model is prohibited. In the end, both CowPlant and PixelVibeSims was criticized on Reddit for finding “holes” in EA’s terms. Both creators have announced they are severing any connection with The Sims 4 franchise and that the 3D models they build are their own property.
Ultimately this issue is a divisive one, with The Sims 4 community members being in various places with various thoughts on the issue.
“As someone who primarily builds custom content, I can understand why people wouldn’t be happy with fee walls.” KawaiiFoxita said. “This didn’t really bother me at first because I think the people who make these amazing meshes and assets deserve to be paid for the time and effort they put in. They are the ultimate artists. and I support the work of artists where I can. That said, I also understand it can be for those who can’t afford it and also for those who believe these people have violated the rules. terms of service.”
However, KawaiiFoxita also brings another good point. The Sims 4 community has largely credited modders as being among the first responders to bugs in the game, and has also brought in a larger number of players to the franchise through its add-ons. their free big.
“Many mod and CC users feel that the game wouldn’t be playable in its current state without them. So with the removal of income for many modders, this could mean them no longer creating – and if they don’t, KawaiiFoxita said. “EA really should be aware of what’s going on in the custom and modification content community and consider hiring these creators to help implement the features. this feature/content in the game itself, so that they can be rolled out to more PC players and these people can be rewarded for all they do. “
UPDATE: In an email to GameSpot, EA confirmed that The Sims 4 modders are allowed to continue using early access periods.
“The Sims team just updated Frequently asked questions about Sims 4 Mods to make it clear that all users must be able to access the full Mod for free,” an EA rep told GameSpot. However, creators can still run a reasonable early access window for their content.
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