The Sims 4: Ghosts

Removal, Resurrection, and Joining the Family

A Ghost in The Sims 4
A Ghost

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.

A Ghost scares a Sim in The Sims 4
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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Becoming friends with a ghost will let you add them to your household
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.

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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 trait_ghost_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 trait_ghost_animalobjects_killerchicken - Death by chicken (Cottage Living)
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_animalobjects_killerrabbit - Death by rabbit - Cottage Living
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_beetle - Beetle - Eco Lifestyle
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_climbingroute - Climbing Route fail - Snowy Escape
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_cowplant - Cow Plant
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_drown - Drowning
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_electrocution - Electrocution
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_embarrassment - Embarrassment
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_fire - Fire This cheat may be temporarily broken due to a patch
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_flies - Flies - Eco Lifestyle
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_frozen - Frozen - Seasons
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_hunger - Hunger
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_laughter - Laughter
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_lightning - Lightning - Seasons
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_motherplant - Mother Plant - Strangerville
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_murphybed - Murphy Bed - Tiny Living
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_oldage - Old Age
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_elderexhaustion - Overexertion (Old Age)
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_overheat - Overheating - Seasons
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_poison - Poison - Jungle Adventure
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_pufferfish - Pufferfish - City Living
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_rodent_disease - Rabid Rodent Fever - My First Pet
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_steam - Sauna
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_vampire_sun - Vampire sun exposure - Vampires
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_vendingmachine - Vending machine - Snowy Escape
  • traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_witchoverload - Spellcaster Overload - Realm of Magic

Removing Ghosts and Bringing Back the Dead

Return to the Netherworld sends a ghost off to the beyond, never to be seen again
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.

Resurrecting Ghosts

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.

Ghosts and the grim reaper
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.

Playing as Ghosts

Ghosts can walk through walls, sometimes.
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.

Playable Ghosts
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:

A ghost who was eaten by a cow plant can decay plants when angry
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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Comments (115)

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New
TLDKakeliawolfXxsays...

also if it's too new, can someone please let me know when it isn't? but for now, is there a way i can get my sim that died to come back home? and how do I add her back to the family? her sister was her best friend so she's often sad about it

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Admin
Playalotsays...

Ghosts appear between the hours 11.pm and 6am so look out for the ghost to make a visit to their original home lot during those hours. Build up your friendship with them when they do appear and then use the friendly social that asks them to move into the household again.

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New
TLDKakeliawolfXxsays...

okay thank you ^-^ also I just noticed theres no lightning...whats the cheat for death by lightning? 0-0

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New
Nikiesays...

I got a ghost Child from the well, brought him back to life and now he never stops doing anything even when the bar is full and others near empty. Autonomy is on, no cheats, ps4. Anyone else have this? If so is there a fix without cheats?

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Admin
Playalotsays...

Two things you can try: One: while in live mode on pause, Press Shift-Ctrl-C keys together to bring up cheat console. Type in:

resetsim [firstname lastname] using the actual name of your Sim.

Two: delete the localthumbcache.package file from your TheSims4 folder.

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New
Carmsays...

So I followed ur directions here on how to get a ghost resident... but it’s not letting me add the ghost to my household... they died there, I have the urn in the household, ghost shows up, but I cant add them to the household. The option doesn’t show up at, and the Sims relationship with the ghost is full, the ghost is his girlfriend too...

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Admin
Playalotsays...

It's a really annoying interaction to get sometimes. best thing to do is enable cheats and just shift click them into the household

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New
Natesays...

If you use "traits.remove_trait ghost_fire" it will remove the fire trait.

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New
Mintysays...

Hi. You have the old cheat for turning into ghost (caused by fire) the new cheat is traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_fire

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New
Mintysays...

It's also the same for anger. The new cheat is

traits.equip_trait trait_ghost_anger

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New
Selenesays...

Can you summon a non-playable sim who is a ghost? My sim feel in love with a townie, but he died. I don't know where his urn is to summon him.

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Admin
Playalotsays...

Housed dead sims spawn an urn or a gravestone even on an unplayed lot, even if they are NPC's you've never played and even if you are not on the lot when they die. But if the Sim that died was not in a house, then no urn will be created meaning once dead they are pretty much gone from the game. Sometimes the ghost will phone your Sim up and invite them out, say yes as this is possibly the only opportunity you will get to save this ghost. You may need to use cheats to insta-add them to your household. Enable 'testingcheats on' then shift+click them and choose 'add to household'.

Culling mechaniocs and a few more tips

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New
Weird Peepsays...

I killed my sim by the poison cheat but I didn't get a tombstone how do I get rid of them

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Admin
Playalotsays...

Go to Manage Households and find them and delete them

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New
Khsays...

Anyone know the ghost behaviors for the newer death types?? (e.g. murphy bed, etc.)

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New
Jaesonsays...

how can you be a ghost and half human

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New
T 2bJonesinsays...

I cannot find an accurate hint to find a sim that I created and was playing but dies while I was actively playing another household. Can you help?

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New
Gamelife76says...

How are ghost sims affected by death by killer rabbit?

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New
ARSsays...

This is missing a lot of the newer causes of death, such as flies, flowers, etc.

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New
Laylasays...

I have a mysterious ghost walking around my house , i don’t know WHO THE HECK IT IS soooo this helps!

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New
Jemsays...

Thanks for this info! I'm new to sims 4 and I think its a great way to learn about the game!



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