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In The Sims 4, you can become an astronaut, make friends with ghosts or turn into a vampire. One thing you can’t do is smoke weed, which is why one player has spent months working on a mod to bring that and other drugs to the game. He’s earning thousands of dollars in donations for his work.
Filip, who only wanted to use his first name, says he first downloaded The Sims 4 in May of last year to try to make a virtual model of his kitchen while he and his wife were making renovations on their house. He’s not a Sims player, and soon discovered that he wouldn’t be able to use the game to simulate different ways to change up his kitchen. When he stumbled upon some drug-related custom content, however, he started getting more interested in the game. He found drug-themed clutter objects, like lines of cocaine or bongs, but none of them were usable. Although he didn’t have too much programming experience, he wondered if he could modify those objects so that they’d be more than just decorational. During a call, he told me that he started with making a mod that allowed a Sim to snort a line of cocaine that he’d downloaded, and then it just grew from there.
For the past six months, Filip has been working on Basemental, a drug-themed mod for The Sims 4. It includes four different drugs—cocaine, MDMA, amphetamines and weed—that Sims can buy, sell and use. In order to use it, you make a sim with the “Drug Dealer” trait and move them into your neighborhood to act as an NPC that other Sims can buy from. Sims can also buy from the the Dark Web on their computers. Once Sims have drugs in their inventory they can use them—sometimes autonomously. Sims experience both the peaks and valleys of drug use. They’ll get high, but also come down and have hangovers. They can have fatal and non-fatal overdoses and form addictions. If you’re using WickedWhims, a comprehensive sex mod for The Sims 4, they can also exchange sex for drugs when they’re desperate.