The Sims 4 – Steam Version


EA/Maxis has released Sims 4 and all it’s packs on Steam on June 18th 2020. This doesn’t mean you need to re-buy everything. EA app works just like before. I would actually advise against buying it on Steam again if you already have it on EA app. The Steam version also needs EA app so the advantages are small.

I put together a FAQ below.

This FAQ was done by self-testing everything and isn’t official Info. I couldn’t try out everything and some things may differ depending on your setup.

My Setup

  • EA app: Sims 4 Digital Deluxe + All packs and free content
  • Steam: Sims 4 Standard Version + Seasons (Many thanks to EA QA for giving me Steam keys to try this out)

No, that is not possible. You need to re-buy the base game on Steam if you want to play on Steam. EA app will also run on top of Steam if you play the Steam Version

No. This isn’t necessary though. The game automatically appears in EA app once you connect your accounts.

You need to rebuy the game if you also want it on EA app.

Yes. Once you installed the game, EA app opens and you can either create a new EA account or link with an existing one.

While you run the game, EA app will also run in the background. So both Steam and EA app run.

If you want to unlink your Steam Account later or link to a different account, you’ll need to contact EA Support

Yes, this is possible

You only need to rebuy the base game. All packs that you own on EA app should automatically be registered on Steam and show up in your game. For me, this wasn’t exactly true. My EA app installation was not recognized by Steam. I had to download and reinstall all packs that I already have installed on EA app again to make them show up in the game. It wasn’t necessary to re-buy them though.

I do not know what happens if you had EA Play, bought packs and then revoked your subscription. This will leave you with owning the packs but not the base game. It is possible that you won’t see the packs you own in Steam if you don’t have the base game on EA app.

No, this is not possible. EA app only sees packs you bought on EA app. You need to play with the Steam version if you want to play with DLC from Steam and EA app.

It’s also only possible to connect the base game with EA app. If you bought DLC on steam without the base game, it won’t be possible to use that content. It might actually be impossible to just buy/gift DLC on Steam without the base game.

The steam version is currently Windows only. I don’t know if a Mac version is planned or not.

There are a few trade cards. The achievements are bound to the save game just like they are in EA app.

I think so but I can’t verify that. There are only a handful of packs that are available through EA Play Pro though-

Yes. It’s sufficient to re-buy the standard Version. All digital extra content such as digital deluxe, the limited version or the Guitar or the P.R.I.M.A computer will be unlocked automatically in the Steam Version if you have them on your linked EA app Account.

The installation is done via Steam.

After buying you can download and install the game. After doing so, Steam asks for your EA app Account and you can either create a new one or link to an existing one. If you want your EA app packs to be visible in Steam, you need to link the account that has the packs.

Physically the game installs to the folder you choose in Steam. If you already installed through EA app, then those will be in different folders.

For me all packs I own on Steam were also automatically downloaded and installed, also in the Steam folder. This leads to duplication of all installation files. I’m not sure if that is how it’s supposed to be or not.

There are a few options to start the game

  • Through Steam
  • Through the shortcut on your desktop (new icon)
  • Through EA app (you should now also see the Steam version)

Testing with my installation always started the version I installed last, no matter which shortcut or tile I used on EA app. I don’t know if that’s how it’s intended or if this is a bug or if this has to do with having to different base game versions.

After starting the game, I got a message telling me that the missing packs that I own are now being installed. This never happened (although I turned on automatic updates). A few packs were downloaded on the next start of EA app. It’s all a bit random still.

You can uninstall the game through EA app or Steam.

Both options push uninstalling through Steam. If you have both the EA app and Steam version then the EA app version will also show as uninstalled afterwards although all the files are still there. You can then just reinstall through EA app which is basically a repair only and make everything shown as installed again.

You can repair the Steam version through EA app or through Steam. The process is done through Steam and if it only runs in the background, it can happen that you won’t see the message that a repair is being done, leaving you with the feeling, nothing is happening.

Because of that I would recommend using repair through Steam. This way you see that something is being done.

Steam uses the same User Files as EA app. Mods/Saves and everything else is there from start when you start the game. It’s not possible to have different saves for the Steam Version than you have for EA app. Make sure that you have all the same packs installed before starting an existing save.

Since the user folder is the same in both cases, you can use the same method you would for EA app. There’s an option to save your files in Steam but as far as I know that only saves your install files and not the user files.

The option to change the language is available in EA app as before but the language isn’t actually changed if you do it there. Use Steam to change the language (the process is also a lot faster)

Option can be found in: Properties –> Language.

There do seem to be a few issues, especially if the EA app installation isn’t recognized by Steam as it is for me.  There shouldn’t be any difference between the EA app and the Steam version other than the EA app igin version just needing EA app while Steam needs Steam and EA app and that the EA app version doesn’t recognize your Steam content.

Steam doesn’t show DLC you bought on EA app as bought.

It’s also important that the game uses the same user files. You need to make sure you have all the packs you need installed before you start an existing save. It’s also not possible to play one version with and the other without mods.

A few players also talk about issues with the EA app version after refunding the Steam version. It’s probably best to unlink your account first through EA Support before refunding the game on Steam.

In Theory: No. The Steam Version has the 64 bit requirement and the Legacy Edition isn’t available on Steam to download.

In Practice: It works anyways. Since the Legacy Edition behaves as DLC, you can just get it through EA app and then install in your game. This does only work if you have the base game on EA app as well (untested)

Probably only if you don’t own the EA app Version already or if you have very few packs.

The advantages of the Steam version are small. You need EA app anyways and there are no achievements – just a few trade cards.

If you don’t have a lot of packs, it can be interesting since prices on Steam tend to be lower. There have been a lot of sales going on in EA app as well though so in my opinion: It’s only for real Steam Freaks that need all their games on Steam.

I think the target audience for the Steam version are people that like to browse for games on Steam and don’t use the rest of the net to find new games that often.

  • The hotkey for the Steam overlay conflicts with the hotkeys for FPV. If you want to use FPV in Steam, you need to re-assign the Steam Overlay hot-keys.
  • Players that refund the game on steam report that their game was also removed from EA app. If this happens, please contact EA Support to have the game re-added to your EA app library.

According to information from EA/Maxis this is not possible but since the whole cross-platform compatibility is unsupported, it may just work anyways. I don’t have an Epic account to check.

According to a user report, Steam is able to see all content from Epic and EA app if you connect all your accounts to your EA account.