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[READ FIRST] Help us Helpers to Help you
[ Edited ]


This guide was specially written for Sims 3 but it goes for all games. Some things might not apply but usually each forum has an overview with general issues and troubleshooting steps.


First let me say this: I don't work for EA and have of course no right to tell you what you should or should not do here, so if you don't want to follow the guidelines here that is fine, you won't get in trouble for it. 


This are just a few tips that can make the whole helping process a lot less frustrating for both sides. I might not even speak for the other helpers on this page but only for myself but I've been helping out Simmer for 3 years now and I do believe I have some experience on what info is necessary and what is not.


Please do NOT send me PMs with questions. They belong in the forum so others can read your issue and solution. I won't answer any questions via PM.

Do Research


Doing your own research goes a long way. The internet is a place of much information, so please use the resources at hand by googling your issue before you post. If you have an error message it's most efficient to google the message itself.



Before you post here


  • Read this post: Known issues, guides and FAQs. It contains links to a few known issues and a few tips on how to solve them.
  • Use the Search at the top by typing some words that best describe your issue.
  • Read the titles of  first two pages of the forum. Especially on new releases there is bound to be another post with the same issue that you have. If you find a thread with the exact same issue (there are exceptions to this rule, please see below), press the me too button and add any extra info you have. Try ANY solutions already provided in the thread you found. If you have tried the solution and it didn't help, please state so. Helpers don't know if you did.
  • In most cases it's ok to post in someone else's thread if you have the same issue but depending on how old the thread is on how much back and forth it needs, it's sometimes easier to make your own thread where you can be helped individually.
  • Do not post in a thread that has already been solved unless you want to add some extra info. I for example rarely check on solved issues. You can read the solutions and give XP if it helped you as well but if it didn't help you, it's better to make a new thread, stating that the solution in that other thread (post the link) did not help you.
  • Don't add your issue to multiple threads. If you made your own, stick to it and don't post the same in threads of other people. Also don't go posting it in threads of every other person that has slightly the same problem. Stick to one. If you made a double thread by accident, you can edit your post to let people know that it's a double post of something else and that it doesn't need help. If you passed a certain level here, you can even delete your own posts under options.
  • If a solution helped you too, it's nice to give the person that provided the solution XP. You can do so by pressing the XP button of the post with the solution.
  • Do you have an issue with your account ? Serial Code issues ? Keep in mind that the helpers here are users like yourself. We cannot check your account or have any access to it so if your issue is account/billing/serial code related, contact Customer Support instead.

Where to post what


Issues related to the your serial code, your order or your account


No one here can help you. Only customer support can. Read this first: [Information] How to Register The Sims 3 


Issues related to downloading/installig from Origin or other Origin Issues


Best to post in the Origin section of the AnswerHQ. The users there can probably help you better.


Issues related to downloading/installig from Steam or other Steam Issues


Best to post in the Steam forums. Users there know more about Steam.


Issues related to crashing, lagging, launcher, exchange, graphic or sound

Post here or if you don't get help in a timely period (allow 24 hours, we're all users here and wanna play the new EP too), try the technical forum at Also just users but more of them.


Issues related to gameplay bugs aka glitches that occur ingame while playing


Report in the bug threads at the official forum. There's one for almost every Expansion Pack, stickied to the top of the forum


Mac Issues


Here's a few trouble shooting steps:

If these don't help, open a thread and add the word MAC to your title so helpers know right away who should be answering


Console Issues


If you own Sims 3 on XBOX or PS3, your of course also welcome to post here. Please make sure to add the name of your console to your title.


Ideas & Feedback


For ideas & feedback, please use the appropriate forum at (make sure to choose US - English as your langauge):


Starting your own thread


If you were not able to find a solution on your own, make a post here. The people here are happy to help you out but try to follow a few guidelines. Remember that we are all USERS here.

We have no insight into the code or anything what EA does or thinks. All information given is strictly done at our best knowledge. I myself can't be held responsible for any damage done. You do try stuff at your own risk. If you want someone from EA to answer you, you need to contact Customer Support.

There are a few moderators/admin here which can easily be spotted cause they are called Community Manager but they are mainly here to keep the place tidy. They do answer but only if no one else is helping out.


The Thread Title


The thread title is very important. A title that catches my eye thinking: I know the answer to that one, is more likely to get an answer then threads title: I need help or The Sims 3. Try to put the essential of the problem in the title without making it too long or the only info you give. I tend to skip posts with no content. It also helps other users find a solution if they have the same issue.


If you are on a console or mac it's best to also include that in the title.


The Post Content


Try to describe your problem in as much detail as possible without getting too lengthy. A post should be made in english to the best of your knowledge. Don't use text speech or use too many abbreviations (I know I have the tendency to use those, so please ask if something is unclear). Use dots and commas to make your post more readable as well as paragraphs. 


If english is not your native language, it's good to make a note about it but there's no need to apologize for it. If you are more comfortable writing in German, that language is now supported too. Head over to the German Sims 3 Forum.


Don't use hard to read fonts, colors or write the whole post in CAPS or a large font. 


Please don't rant in your post. I get that you are upset but the people helping here have no association with EA and reading posts that consist of angry smilies and cursing usually make me skip those posts. Don't know about the other helpers but describing your issue in a calm and informative matter goes a long way.


Try to use the right terms if possible. It's sometimes not easy to know what the person means, if the terms are all scrambled.


  • Download: A download is something where you get something from a server or the Internet TO your computer (eg. you download the game from Origin onto your computer)
  • Upload: A upload is something where you get something FROM your Computer to a server or the Internet (eg. you upload a Sim or house to the Exchange)
  • Installation: Installing is the process of copy the necessary files to your computer and configuring it to run correctly (eg. you install the game from the disc to your computer or install it after downloading it from Origin.


DO NOT post serial numbers, email address, your DOB or any other kind of personal information. This is a public forum so anyone can see that info. It's for your own protection.


A post should include the following information:


  • Your Operating System. Please also state if you have the Steam version.
  • Are you getting any error messages ? If so, post the exact wording (if they are in a foreign language, try to translate as accurate as possible or post them in your own language)
  • Are you using custom content or mods ? That's fine but please let us know that you do.
  • What have you tried ? Don't say I've tried everything. The Helper does not know what everything includes. Try to be specific. Saying, I've tried everything listed in this or that thread is ok.
  • If you have pictures, upload them to a picture sharing site and link it here. Pics are great.
  • If you have an issue of a more technical nature, include info on your system, best is to post your DxDiag and also post if you have the download or disc version and if you have a notebook or desktop computer.
  • It might be helpful to include how computer knowledgeble you are (Basic, Intermediate, Advanced)

It's also good to use message tags for easy finding of the post.


Special Case: Game Crashes


Game Crashes are a very individual problem. Don't post in threads of other people.


Some general suggestions can be found here: but if those don't help you, make your own post and include the following info

  • What is your operating system ?
  • At what point does your game crash ? Any regularities ?
  • How long can you usually play ?
  • Which EP/SPs do you have installed ?
  • Are you using custom content and mods in your game ?
  • It's also good to include your DxDiag: [HOW TO] DxDiag for Sims 3 - PC Only


Keeping up with your thread


When you start a thread, do come back to check on it. It's kinda rude to make a post, have a helper invest their time and never come back. You can find all posts you made by clicking on the HQ Profile link in the drop down menu of you nick name. You can also bookmark or subscribe to it to get an email when you have an answer.


If you made a post and did not get an answer or the problem wasn't solved yet, DO NOT MAKE A NEW THREAD. Bump your thread by adding extra info in a new post. Try to rephrase what you wrote or maybe even change the title. It's very important for the helpers to know what you have already tried and keeping to the same thread retains the history of this. If you don't do this, you end up starting over if you get any help at all. Do make a new thread if you have a different issue.


If your issue is solved (even if you found the solution yourself), accept the post with the solution as solution (click on the green button). If you solved your own issue, post the solution you found and accept this for this can help someone else.


Accepting a solution makes sure that someone else with the same issue knows what the solution was without having to go through all posts and the helpers know that you have been helped and can maybe post the same solution to someone else. Do not accept a solution until your issue is resolved or you end up not having help anymore. If you want to show your appreciation although your issue is not solved, give the user XP instead. 

Happy Gaming


I don't work or have any association with EA. I give advice to the best of my knowledge and cannot be held responsible for any damage done to your computer/game.

Please only contact me via PM when asked to do so.

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