The Sims 4: Ghosts
Removal, Resurrection, and Joining the Family
Ghosts are a feature of the Sims 4 Base Game. They are the result of Sims who've passed away, and their behavior and abilities vary based upon the cause of death. We have a separate guide to individual ways Sims can die, and preventing death. This guide to Ghosts will teach you about their attributes, means of getting rid of ghosts, having ghosts join your household, and how to bring a ghost back from the dead.
Ghost Visits & Basics
While there is some variation in what ghosts can do and how they behave, they also share the same qualities. Ghosts will visit in the middle of the night (after 10) and depart in the morning (around 6am). The presence of their urn (indoors) or tombstone (outdoors) is what determines the lot they will spawn on. Ghosts tend to behave erratically, but also in ways tied to the type of death they experienced. Having a haunting can be predictably chaotic, given the damage they could cause overnight, but they're mostly a minor nuisance that sometimes leads to funny moments and overall has a negligible impact on gameplay.
Ghosts get a few unique socials, namely 'Scare' and 'Pass Through'
Ghosts may cause a Tense +2 Moodlet on Sims whenever they possess a nearby object, and possess the spook and pass through socials in order to scare Sims. Often, their arrival is nothing special to a group of Sims unless they possess a nearby object, and you're able to easily socialize with them and even befriend them over time. The color of a ghost shifts based on their emotions, not on their death type. You can easily tell if a ghost is happy if they're green. Flirty if pink, red is angry, blue sad, and so on.
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Befriending ghosts lets you ask them to move in.
Given the odds are somewhat low for a visit from an individual ghost each night, the more urns on your lot the more likely you are to experience paranormal activity. Players of multi-generational families who keep their previous Sims around may have 2-3 ghosts running around at night, messing with the house. I'd say a ghost appears on average 1-2 nights a week, sometimes more, and you may experience long dry spells with no activity.
Cheat to Get a Ghost
The following cheats add or remove a specific type of death trait that is responsible for making a Sim into a ghost in the first place. Turning one of these on will immediately turn them into a ghost of the appropriate type. Equip the trait with traits.equip_trait X to turn them into a ghost or remove it with traits.remove_trait X to return the Sim back into a normal, living Sim. For this second part, you must use the exact type of death cheat to reverse it. Use the simology panel (hotkey Y) if you're unsure.
- traits.equip_trait anger - Anger, and for example traits.remove_trait anger to remove it. This cheat may be temporarily broken due to a patch.
- traits.equip_trait cowplant - Cow Plant
- traits.equip_trait drown - Drowning
- traits.equip_trait electrocution - Electrocution
- traits.equip_trait embarrassment - Embarrassment
- traits.equip_trait fire - Fire This cheat may be temporarily broken due to a patch
- traits.equip_trait hunger - Hunger
- traits.equip_trait laugh - Laughter
- traits.equip_trait oldage - Old Age
- traits.equip_trait exhaust - Overexertion (Old Age)
- traits.equip_trait steam - Sauna
Removing Ghosts and Bringing Back the Dead
Ghosts can be removed from the game by sending them to the netherworld. Afterward, the tombstone or urn they belonged to can be destroyed.
Return/Send to Netherworld
This is how you get rid of a ghost, forever. Do not use this option unless you are sure that you never want to see a ghost again and that you'll never want to play them. Click the ghost's urn or tombstone and you can release their spirit, permanently. Family tree aside, it will be as though that Sim never existed as far as the game is concerned and they cannot be recovered. Ghosts can decide to 'move on' this way, even once controlled by the player. Simply have the ghost select their own remains and return to netherworld.
Sims who complete the Bestselling Author Aspiration can earn the Poetic Reward Trait, which allows them to write the Book of Life. This book, which cannot be bound to the author, allows a Sim to be restored to life when they are a Ghost. If you want to protect the Author, you'll need to have another Sim do this Aspiration. Once it's written, simply bind the book to a Sim while still living, and then have them read the book themselves. You can make one for every member of your household. The Ghost must use the Restore feature to resurrect themselves. Any other Sim who reads it can only summon the Ghost.
A group of ghosts gathers around, as the Reaper prepares to make another of the poor test family join their ranks.
If you did not get the Poetic Trait, then you need to make Ambrosia to bring the Ghost back to life. This requires a Death Flower, Potion of Youth, and Angelfish, along with mastery of both Cooking and Gourmet Cooking. Click to learn about Ambrosia and how you can get all its requirements in an efficient way. Ambrosia is one of the more challenging things to create in The Sims 4.
The game has a limit of 180 Sims, and ghosts are subject to deletion in multi-generational games. They are likely targets for the game to delete and make room for new Sims as others grow old. You can prevent this and remove the limit entirely with the No Culling Mod, available at modthesims.info.
Playing as Ghosts
Ghosts can sometimes take shortcuts to get from A to B faster. This is great, even better is that they're immortal and have all the time in the world.
Even if a ghost was your Sim's husband, relationship will decay at the normal rate and thus levels may fall. In order to play as a ghost, you can simply befriend one each time it visits and then ask it to join your household. If you don't mind cheating, you can easily use testingcheats on and shift-click the ghost when it visits, click add to family. If you wait it out, you should be able to befriend them within 2-3 visits and get them to rejoin the family.
Ghosts are immortal as they have already died, and you can play as a single ghost without any living Sims in the household without issue. Sims can Woohoo with ghosts, but may not produce the ever-coveted Ghost Baby. Ghosts do not have any special abilities when it comes to need decay, their needs are exactly the same as those of living Sims.
They can, however, walk through walls (when you've clicked and automatic pathing decides it's a good idea) and get a few unique socials related to scaring Sims. Ghosts can do the 'Ghostly Repair' on certain objects (mainly plumbing, but not electronics), fixing them and saving Sims time. They'll actually gain handiness skill in the process. Other behaviors relate to how they died:
Sims' death type determines their abilities as a ghost. In this case, she was eaten by a cow plant and can now decay plants when angry - hence the red.
Ghost Behavior by Death Type
Here are the behaviors ghosts exhibit, based upon the type of death. Many of these effects are situational or only existent whenever the ghost is a non-player character:
- Anger - May give nearby Sims a small angry Moodlet (+1) with +2 for the Ghost.
- Cow Plant - When angry, they can Decay a plant and cause it to grow weeds and lose water, possibly killing a plant that was already in bad shape.
- Drowning - May cause pools of water to appear.
- Electrocution - When angry, they may break electronics by possessing them. They can also shock Sims for a laugh.
- Embarrassment - May give nearby Sims a small embarrassed Moodlet, with +2 for the Ghost.
- Fire - May set fires at times, in random places. When player controlled, click the ground while angry to start a fire (may only work on the home lot).
- Hunger - Will often eat in the middle of the night
- Laughter - May give nearby Sims a small playful Moodlet, +1 for others, +2 for the Ghost.
- Old Age/Overexertion - They just tend to chill when acting autonomously.
- Sauna - Like the death-by-hunger Sim, except they strongly desire a cool-off. Because of this, they can near-instantly absorb puddles from the ground as opposed to mopping them.
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