Traces of a galaxy far far away have long been part of The Sims 4 in the form of costumes and even a little statue of Baby Yoda, but with The Sims 4’s upcoming game pack, The Sims 4 Star Wars: Journey to Batuu, the world of Star Wars exists alongside the regular game world in full force. Much like reliving my excitement walking into Disneyland’s Galaxy’s Edge for the first time, launching Journey to Batuu was an exciting event. Once that initial excitement passed, however, I saw in my six hours of preview playtime that this game pack is, as seemingly intended, a fun accompaniment likely meant for visits rather than long-term stays.
Journey to Batuu allows your Sims to take a vacation to Batuu, a world where Simoleons have no meaning and you’ll need to earn the local Galactic Credit currency by completing missions. Or, you know, by cheating. It’s The Sims, so naturally I figured out how to cheat my way into a small fortune immediately. You’ll land in the Black Spire Outpost with some credits even without cheats, though, and a Star Wars-appropriate outfit for any Sims in your party. From there you can take on quests for the Resistance, First Order, and Scoundrels or just hang out in Oga’s Cantina.
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Quest completion means more Galactic Credits, but more importantly, reputation points for the three factions that then build up to raise your rank within each. You will have to choose between the Resistance and First Order as doing quests for one will earn you negative reputation points for the other, but so long as you don’t have a quest active, you can pick up tasks for the Scoundrels regardless of your allegiance. You can also choose to stick with the Scoundrels and prioritize earning money if you’d prefer. The new Star Wars aspiration does split into two goals that lets you focus on either the faction conflict or side with the smugglers and focus on getting credits.
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Aligning with one of the two conflicting factions and improving your rank within them can change the faction banners present throughout Batuu, earn your Sim access to special bases for the Resistance or First Order, and give them special interactions with Sims around them. For instance, Rank 1 First Order Sims can check IDs of other Sims. If the person is aligned with the Resistance, the two will fight. If the First Order Sim wins, they’ll take the rebel into custody for questioning. I didn’t get very far in either quest line in my time (earning reputation is a slow affair) but it was neat to see how my Sims fit into helping the two rival factions even early on.
The quests themselves are a handful of tasks that sometimes require your Sim to have enough skill points in things like Programming to complete. In one Resistance mission my Sim needed to hack into a First Order communications panel to scramble starfighter traffic monitoring systems. On my first attempt her programming skill was too low which resulted in her failing to disrupt the system. The only consequence was a nasty-looking shock and a bad mood, but I was free to let her study up at lightspeed (by this I mean cheat and give her the skill points of my choosing) and try again. On the other hand, some are quests that don’t have much risk and only require you to chat with others. An early First Order quest tasked my Sims with spreading First Order propaganda to at least five Batuu residents. They met it with mixed results, but their opinion of the information wasn’t important for my quest.
There are other basic quests similar to those two that can be repeated for your Sim to earn extra faction points, but the main missions that require certain ranks are the real fun ones. These are a sort of choose-your-own-adventure activities that take place off-planet. Your Sim will board their faction’s spacecraft, launch, and the mission begins. Like when a Sim goes to a job, you’ll receive text pop-ups with options for the mission. Choices for each mission vary and some options will even be locked if your Sim doesn’t have the skill points to execute the option properly. It seems like rocket science, handiness, programming, and fitness are going to be important skills for successful Sims in Batuu.
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Aside from factions and quests, your Sim can build a lightsaber or even a droid, just like we can in the real Galaxy’s Edge. I was delighted to recreate my own real-life BB-unit droid in Journey to Batuu and see it trail my Sim all throughout the three neighborhoods of Batuu. You can build BB-units or R-units and give them personality chips if you’ve reached a high enough rank in the three factions. Droids are more than just little buddies, though. They can create distractions while you’re hacking into panels, they can play music, and they can help improve your navigation when you’re on an off-world mission. If your Sim has the right skills, they can improve their droid’s capabilities too.
I unfortunately didn’t have time to build a lightsaber, but once your Sim has one, they can challenge other lightsaber-weilding Sims to duels. I adore the authenticity and details found throughout this expansion. In my time I saw a variety of neat creatures lurking around Batuu and even had a drink at the same table I did in real life in Oga’s Cantina. It’s a great way to experience Galaxy’s Edge when visiting in real life isn’t an option.
However, there is something to be said about taking a break from Batuu. For those unfamiliar with The Sims expansions, Journey to Batuu is a game pack, meaning it’s not quite as big as a full expansion pack (and comes at a lower price point too), but still with plenty to do. But as a game pack, it’s not exactly a location in The Sims world you’ll want to exist in perpetuity, although you can if that’s your jam. There are limited spots across the three neighborhoods for your Sims to take care of their more private needs and the quests can get repetitive.
When you do leave, though, you leave behind your galactic life that’ll wait for you until you return. There are of course plenty of neat household items you can use to deck out your home in Star Wars gear. You can also use items you collected in Batuu to decorate your home. I’m looking forward to eventually opening my own Star Wars-themed restaurant with all the new foods my Sim experienced in Batuu.