Hi. My name is Kaitlyn and I'm having problems with The Sims 4. I tried contacting EA directly multiple times, but failed. The live chat seemed to malfunction on multiple occasions, so I opened another case and was advised to talk on the phone with EA. No phone number was provided and I can't find it online. So, here I am. I'm quite lost. If anyone could help, it would be very much appreciated!
I haven't played The Sims 4 online in a long time. I always played it offline (mostly to avoid dealing with updates). That's a poor choice, I'm sure. I always struggled with updates for The Sims and Origin, because no matter how many times Origin would say "origin updates are optimized - which means they're really fast!" or whatever, they would never be any different than they were in the past. I'm on a PC. A Lenovo ThinkPad, to be specific. I have Windows 10 as well. I always saved my games (of course) and saved my households and lots to my library within the game. Anyway, after finally deciding it was time to update, I attempted to go online in Origin. I couldn't get any of my games to open nor could I get Origin to update. So I uninstalled it and reinstalled it. Keep in mind, I never backed up any of my saves. After it finally reinstalled, I had to reinstall and update my games. After a lengthy installation of The Sims 4 and the expansions that I own, it was finally ready to play. Or so I thought. I clicked on The Sims 4 and received an error message. I don't remember exactly what it said (another poor choice on my part for not taking a picture of it) but I couldn't figure out what to do so I went back into Origin, clicked on The Sims 4, clicked on the settings icon, and chose the "repair" option. This didn't take too long, which was nice. However, when I opened the game and went to go load one of my worlds, none of my worlds were there. So I figured maybe my saves were somehow deleted, which was upsetting, but isn't horrible because all my Sims and households are saved in my library, right? Nope. Those were all gone too. Now I was really starting to panic. So I tried to go with the flow and create a new household, hoping that if I created a household and bought a house and finished whatever tutorial there was that covered the new features, it would let me back into my other worlds. Of course that didn't work out either. So I went back into file explorer, and all my Sims 4 files had been replaced with new ones dated 3/22/2020 (the day all of this chaos was happening) and contained nothing except the new pointless household I had just made. And I can't seem to find my old files anywhere.
I don't know where I went wrong. Probably everything I did was wrong. I hope I explained this well and if anyone could help, that would be great. I've spent so much time and effort on this game and it would break my heart if that were all gone for good!
Let me see if I understand what you are saying.
Sims 4 was played on offline mode.
Never updated game or Origin?
I think you said you uninstalled Origin or Origin and your Sims 4 games?
Repair is always a good idea but not seeing your worlds .... not so nice.
Ok ... if all that is correct let's try a few things to get your game back in running order.
What is your current game version?
What packs do you own?
The game files that are used to run it are under
C:\Program Files (x86)\Origin Games\The Sims 4
Do not worry about those just know that is where the live on your PC.
The files we need to look at are under Documents\Electronic Arts\The Sims 4 and is the home of your current saves, screenshots etc.
Inside that folder is the Tray folder and that is where you find your "Library".
Anything in the Tray folder is only temporary storage on your PC.
Search your PC for "Tray" and "saves" to see if they still exist.
If you use mods or custom content remove the mods folder.
Do repair again then test to verify your worlds are back.
Instructions are in the link below:
March - last edited March
Hi! Thank you for the response.
Yes, I played it on offline mode the majority of the time. In the beginning I played it offline and kept up with updates for both the game and Origin but I only did so until about 2017 or 2018. I uninstalled Origin, but I did not uninstall my Sims 4 games. I'm not quite sure how to find my game version, but my expansions are City Living, Get to Work, Get Together, Outdoor Retreat, Spa Day, and the Holiday Celebration pack. I do not use any mods or custom content. In the Tray folder, the only items that are there are the ones from the new household I made when I was trying to get my game working a few days ago. The same goes for the saves.
I'll take a look at the troubleshooting tips article. Is there anything else I should do? And thank you so much for your response.
Edit: I just looked at the troubleshooting article and I'm still unsure of what to do since my old files are gone. I never created any backup folders of those files either. I have a feeling I'm out of luck on this. Also, I may have to install the Legacy Edition version of the game. It says I can get it for free, which leads me to believe that I need it due to the message that keeps popping up about it being required for players on older operating systems. But I was able to open The Sims 4 just fine as you already know because that is where I ran into the problems with my missing save files. So I'm not sure if Legacy Edition would be able to help with that if my files are already gone.
Also, I can't restore my PC to another point in time. It shows that I have no restore points. Is there anything else I can do to access my files before the repair? I'm starting to think that the problem was created when I repaired the game without having created a backup folder with a copy of my Sims 4 files. Again, thank you so much for all of your help.
March - last edited March
@kaythesunshine Thank you for the additional information.
Do not install the Legacy version unless absolutely necessary.
It is intended for PC users with a 32-bit Operating Systems that cannot upgrade to a 64-bit system.
To confirm which one you have follow these steps:
Source: Lenova Support
If you searched for the folder named Tray and it (older version) was not there you can try another search.
My computer came with a link to cloud storage using OneDrive. What I did not realize was several files were automatically saved to that drive.
If you have ever had or used that service you can try searching there.
Otherwise you have a fresh start. Trust me when I say you have my sincere condolences. My last computer had a severe non-recoverable crash a while back. The only solution was to reset to factory specs. It was very painful because I not only lost my Sims files but irreplaceable personal family photos and documents. I am over it now but was sad for a very long time.
Information FAQ about The Sims 4 Legacy Edition:
The Sims 4 - Update on Supported Systems
Thank you so much for your help! This means a lot to me.
I do have a 64 bit computer, thank goodness. However, I have never used OneDrive, so I think I am out of luck.
It's okay though, I've come to accept it. I think it'll all be okay and that I can make the fresh start work. I mean, obviously that's what I'll have to do. There's no other choice.
I'm so sorry you had to deal with that crash, that's horrible! I'm glad you're over it now, but I still feed bad about it. I hope you could create lots of new memories, not to replace the old ones but to make new ones that bring you more joy and happiness. And thank you again for your kindness, understanding, and patience. You're amazing! And I'm glad this fresh start on my Sims journey was aided by you.
I hope you have a lovely day and that you're safe and healthy!
March - last edited March
@kaythesunshine You are a dear sweet person to offer up such kind words.
The Sims has been my go-to game for a very long while. It truly brings me joy to Create-Share-Play which is one reason I am here. There are lots of things I have learned along my journey that I like to share in the hopes it keeps others excited and engaged in playing.
‣ Sharing to the gallery is a great way to protect your creations. Your favorite households, rooms and lots are always available to you. Many of my favorites are there to redesign and restyle over and over.
‣ Protect your saves by making a place to save them as backups.
Only the ones ending in .save are important.
Always feel free to come back here with any questions. The helpers here are all very friendly and knowledgeable.
Now go and have fun making new memories.
"Remember the past. Cherish the present. Plan a positive future" - EQ