How-to article, entertainment, for the PC game The Sims 3.
How to Haunt Your Sims
by Kris Gutknecht
Sometimes your household grows too large, causing game lag. Sometimes your Sim’s an annoying Scorpio with a Childish trait who picks fights and throws tantrums. Sometimes the Legacy Challenge gives you too many spares, eating up the playtime you’d rather spend with the important heredity Sim.
Sometimes, you’re just up for a little spot of murder.
Since the first Sims game on PC, the player has been given the ability to wield his godlike hand in deadly ways. In The Sims 3, the cause of each Sim’s death can have fun or disastrous results on the playable household.
In order to create a ghost, a Sim must die on the property, or you must place its tombstone/urn somewhere on the property — a death-marker automatically becomes tombstone when it’s outdoors and an urn when it’s indoors. Chance of haunting is increased when friends and family Mourn the departed at least once a day (left click on the tombstone/urn > Mourn). Depending on the ghost Sim’s personality and the way he or she died, regular Mourning may make the ghost more interactive and less destructive.
- Blue, ripple textured ghost: Drowning
- Build a pool on your property. Instruct your Sim to Swim. Sell the ladder. Place objects or a wall around the edge of the pool, since Sims 3 Sims can climb out of the pool. Ignore the pleas for help. The swimmer is more likely to die if they have the Hydrophobic trait.
- Blue ripple ghosts will drip puddles of water all over the property. Very messy.
- Yellow ghost: Electrocution
- Instruct a Sim with 2 or fewer Mechanical skill bars to Tinker an appliance. Alternately, instruct a skillful Sim to Repair an appliance while standing in a puddle. The Sim is especially likely to die if his vital bars and/or mood bars are yellow or red.
- A yellow ghost will try to Repair objects and, instead, break them — requiring a living Sim to Repair them or call the Repairman. A time-consuming and expensive ghost.
- Orange, smoky ghost: Fire
- There’s many ways to do this, but try blocking your victim in a small room with a fireplace and a few pieces of furniture, and then delete the door. The conflagration will spread, so be sure to build your fire cabin far from the rest of the house.
- Orange ghosts take showers or baths, obsessively putting out the fire that killed them.
- Pinky-purple ghost: Starvation
- Either remove all food sources and kitchen appliances from the lot, or simply wall the Sim up in an inescapable dungeon I call “Sim of Amontillado.”
- Pink ghosts raid the fridge and make a mess in the kitchen. They aggressively rattle furniture, zip around, and ignore social interactions, possibly as an homage to the Japanese “hungry ghosts” tradition. Their weight slider moves to the thinnest side, so they look eerily emaciated
- Firey-skinned, orange ghosts: Meteor Strike
- That old chestnut from Sims 2 isbrought back only in the Sims 3: Ambitions expansion pack. Falling meteors are an extremely rare occurrence that you can’t trigger, unless you install player-created cheat mods. In Sims 3, meteors can hit buildings and kill everyone inside.
- I won’t spoil you, but you can save your Sims from being struck if you’re paying attention.
- Dark gray, sand-texture ghosts: Mummy Curse
- Getting cursed is complicated, involving seeking out the mummy and getting it to breathe on you (not from getting knocked out by it). You will know you’re cursed by a pop-up message. The curse can be cured, or you may allow the Sim to die after being cursed for 2 in-game weeks.
- One of the ghost’s Traits will be replaced with Evil, even after you resurrect or reinstate it.
- Gray, sparkly ghosts: Old Age
- They nap in beds and complain, just like in life.
- Ghost babies
- You get these when you Try for a Baby with a ghost, not from killing a baby, which you can’t do in The Sims. The playable female Sim must be the one to become pregnant, and you have a 50/50 chance of each pregnancy producing the undead. If you build a Romantic relationship with an off-site ghost, you need to wait for the option to move its tombstone to the playable household. It’s quicker, easier, and a surer thing to mate with a ghost that un-lives at home.
- The ghost baby will age like a normal Sim, die, and move on to the “Netherworld” where it becomes an NPC.
When you’re tired of necromancy, you can exorcise your ghosts to the town graveyard. Place the tombstone/urn in a playable Sim’s inventory, send the Sim to the graveyard, and place it on an open spot on the ground. The ghost will now haunt the graveyard where your living Sims can visit him or her. If you want the ghost gone entirely, you could hire a Ghost Exterminator or Sell the tombstone/urn.
Extermination may be desirable if the ghost’s living spouse wants to become involved with another Sim; after death, the marriage is downgraded to “engaged,” but the romancer will still get the Cheater reputation.
Like the other alternate lifestate Sims — vampires, mummies, the Big Foot — ghost Sims are fun but unpredictable, and worthy of experimentation for players seeking to enhance their Simming experience.