Customizable pronouns has been a long-awaited feature in The Sims community and is now available in the game's latest update.
The popular life simulation game The Sims 4, developed by Maxis, has added a new customizable pronoun feature to the game following community demand. Previously, The Sims community ran an online petition requesting that the feature be implemented, receiving over 22,000 signatures.
In a blog post, the developers revealed, "We first announced that we were looking into this feature last year after hearing feedback from the community, however this is something that has actually been on our minds for quite some time before we announced it formally."
Earlier this year, developers gave fans the first look at how the feature would be implemented into the game.
The feature has been developed with LGBTQ+ nonprofit organisations It Gets Better and GLAAD, "We reached out to the It Gets Better Project and GLAAD and worked with them to learn more about how pronouns are used, particularly by trans and nonbinary people.
Through this research and through doing a deep dive into the game, we’ve learned about all of the different complex areas that binary gender was present in The Sims 4. From here we then worked with our team to come up with some wireframe designs to help us work on making this feature a reality."
For the time being, customizable pronouns are only available in English. But the team has revealed that they're looking to expand it to other languages.
While fans will be pleased to see this feature finally launch within the game, the developers have acknowledged that there may be times when certain errors or grammatical mistakes crop up. "This is due to several factors such as the complexity of how the feature was implemented, as well as rules around conjugation in English. An example of something you might see is “They likes…”. In this situation, the correct grammatical structure should be “They like…,” The feature works by replacing the pronoun token itself rather than the pronoun and the following verb."
Maxis has encouraged players to send in screenshots of any errors that do crop up and will be looking to fix these instances.
The blog post ends by saying, "While this update isnt the be-all end-all of representation of nonbinary and other gender diverse folks, we strongly feel that it’s important for us to approach better inclusivity over time as we figure out ways to work within the limitations of our code."