This week, Electronic Arts surprised absolutely no one by covertly announcing a service called "The Sims 4 Premium," which will give players early access to slightly better looking versions of things they've already done in Sims games for the last 15 years. What EA isn't telling you? Anyone who doesn't want to fork over an annual subscription fee will be dealing with a substandard Sims experience. And, thanks to an exclusive intracompany memo leaked to Something Awful, we've discovered the many features non-subscribers will be missing out on.
- Windows will be absent from the Standard edition, though Sims can now hang soiled scraps of fabric in front of the rectangular holes in their walls in an effort to keep out the many clouds of roving wasps that nest primarily within the woodwork of non-Premium homes.
- Bathroom fixtures such as toilets, sinks, and showers can only be found in the Premium version, though the Standard edition includes exclusive new items such as "communal waste pit" and "cleansing trough."
- Male characters in the Standard edition can only have one haircut: "The Macklemore." Unfortunately, this will make finding new friends for your Sim nearly impossible.
- New pets exclusive to the Premium subscribers: sugar glider, fennec fox, pygmy marmoset. Pets available in the Standard edition: hissing cockroach, Brazilian scrotum spider, horseshoe crab, H1N1 virus.
- The job of "Electronic Arts viral marketer" will be mandatory for all newly created Sims in the Standard edition. In order to be promoted out of this role, players must spend at least three months of in-game time watching exciting new trailers for Battlefield: Hardline, the game you'll play because of course you will.
- Sims in the Standard edition will only have two ways to interact with fellow Sims: "shove" and "talk about Farscape." Players willing to pay can purchase new interactions, like "squat aggressively," "mime oral sex," and "mega-sit."
- While Premium subscribers will have access to all manner of shops and storefronts, those with the Standard edition will only have four destinations to visit outside of their home: needle exchange van, abandoned Circuit City, the bank that used to be a Taco Bell, and Hobby Lobby.
- Those without a Premium subscription will not be able to have two Sims produce a baby. Standard edition players will have the option of outfitting their pets with people clothes, though this action will cause all friendly SIms in the area to immediately turn hostile, as in real life.
- Premium subscribers have the option of making their Sims immortal. Standard edition players will have to live out the last few years of their Sims' lives in bed with only a few actions available: "regret," "suffer," "bore with anecdote," and "absorb morphine."
- Standard edition players will be able to access The Sims 4 through the Origin platform, as well as post updates about their progress to Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. Premium subscribers won't have to deal with any of that bullshit.
– Bob "BobServo" Mackey