I went into The Sims 4’s Journey to Batuu pack afraid. Afraid for its quality, design, and gameplay enhancements, as many Simmers will be since it was announced on such short notice and without much regard for what fans want in new packs. However, I was surprised to find that I enjoyed Journey to Batuu well enough to recommend it as a good travel destination pack for any Simmers looking for a new experience.
If you’re not much of a Star Wars fan (which I am not), you might be put off as I was –but it offers a nice introduction to what seems to be some fun lore. Let’s jump right into this review of The Sims 4’s Journey to Batuu.
Right off the bat, I found myself a bit disappointed. There weren’t that many additions to Create-A-Sim mode, meaning that my Sim got to pick between just a few outfits related to the pack. There were two new aspirations, one of which I picked –one dependent on your choice to join the First Order or Resistance, and one that’s more about just chilling in Batuu. Unfortunately, I saw no new traits. You can choose “hats” and styles that give your Sim alien heads, which was kind of disappointing. I hoped for them to introduce aliens as separate races, not as cosmetic items to be put atop a human Sim.
After I made my Sim, I picked an apartment in San Myshuno to get my Sim ready in (for Batuu). I also saw this as a great opportunity to check out some of the new objects available in Build/Buy mode. Sadly, there isn’t much from the pack, but I made use of a bit of it to show what you can choose from. It’s mostly crates, plants, lighting, some tables, and chairs. It’s not a Stuff Pack, though, so I guess I can’t complain too much.
To reach Batuu, a world based off of Disney’s Galaxy’s Edge, your Sim must take some time off from their job and travel there via their phone, much like with other similar pack areas (e.g. Granite Falls from Outdoor Retreat). I highly recommend you have some skill lines leveled up before leaving (namely Fitness, Logic, and Programming) as your Sim will make use of them in Batuu.
All Simoleons will be left behind and your currency will instead be comprised of Galactic Credits. Earning these at first felt extremely overwhelming, but I quickly found some easy ways to earn them making my first in-game mission much easier. The first familiar Star Wars face I encountered was that of Hondo Ohnaka, an annoyingly amusing space pirate. I picked up a quest for the Scoundrels faction from him where I had to beat him at a game of Sabacc –Star Wars fans will appreciate the inclusion of this card game, I feel.
This quest, annoyingly, took me FOREVER. It was probably just chance, or maybe the decisions I made while playing, but it did put me off a little. Running back and forth between lightsaber matches and Hondo’s quest –not fun.
Once I finally completed a couple of quests for Hondo, I went on to choose a side. Of course, I went with the Resistance (authoritarian society isn’t really my thing). The questing made me feel like I was experiencing a nice crossover between an RPG and a life sim, which I suppose this pack essentially is. I loved following the little story descriptions as I’d complete objectives, but if I’m honest, it did get a bit old.
My missions began to feel repetitive (especially the constant slicing and such), but watching the world change because of my actions was cool. I got to see my Sim get physically beaten by the First Order and arrested (multiple times), which was fun. My main criticism with the missions is that you can only have one at a time. For a more immersive, RPG-like experience, I’d prefer to be able to pick up multiple quests so that I can switch between working on them, but it’s a good starting point right now for a game like Sims.
The greatest aspect of this new pack for me would have to be the droids. They are ADORABLE, and you can customize them when you buy them! I chose a BB myself and made him black/white. The little guy can follow you around, distract people so you can go through with your mission objectives, shock people until they pass out, and even serve as a portable radio.
This pack’s music is awesome, so I definitely made use of his stereo capabilities! If you’re a fan of the Star Wars soundtracks, get ready to be pleasantly surprised by Sims’ take on the different beloved songs!
As I completed missions for the Resistance and ranked up with them, I unlocked new actions. This feature was really cool, and made the immersion more serious for me. I’d build trust with them, and in turn could do more with them or ask more of them. When I wasn’t working towards this, I was chilling in Oga’s Cantina, listening to the great robotic music and playing Sabacc.
In conclusion, my Sims Journey to Batuu review would have to be read as mostly positive. It’s a fun pack and you can definitely get some good hours out of it between questing and dueling in Batuu and living your normal Sim life in whichever area they live. I wish that more was done with the alien “races” and Create-A-Sim/Build modes, but it didn’t affect my experience enough for me to not recommend the pack.
The real setbacks for me are the repetitive missions, inability to have more than one mission active at a time, confusing aspects of some missions (with not enough guidance), and a shallow storyline that could use more work. I loved the faction immersion, RPG elements, and the ability to have my own droid companion that would help my Sim during missions.
As a non-Star Wars fan, this pack introduced me to some of the fun lore and even some characters without being too overwhelming. For the price point ($19.99), I’d say the pack is worth a look –Star Wars fan or not. To get better bang for your buck, wait for an Origin sale. They happen more often than not!
Reviewer: Anna Koselke | Copy provided by Publisher.
- Fun RPG elements.
- Faction immersion.
- Companion and customization.
- Great music.
- Lack of story.
- Lack of new items added.
- Confusing objectives.
September 8, 2020
Microsoft Windows, macOS, PlayStation 4, Xbox One