The Sims 4 is now a free-to-play game - and yet somehow this isn't today's biggest The Sims news. That's because, during today's Sims Summit livestream, Maxis also announced that the next The Sims is in-development. Currently codenamed Project Rene, it's a few years away, although we saw some early footage of its creative tools in action.
You'll find the chat about Project Rene at the 26m 50s mark in the vidoe below:
Maxis explained that Project Rene is in the "very early stages of development", with "very" in bold and italics. They say they're showing it this early because they want to involve the community in the development process.
Although it's early, there are a few mentioned features. Players will be able to play the game alone or "collaborate with others," suggesting multiplayer of some kind. They'll also be able to play across multiple devices, and the video above shows the same game running on both PC and on mobile phones.
Finally, there will be "more flexibility to help with building and decorating in-game", with options to customise not just colour and pattern of furniture, but the shapes that it's made from. That was illustrated in the video above by showing a couch with cushions that could be split into different numbers of segments. It's similar to the level of customisation we've seen in early trailers for indie rival Paralives.
Although Maxis have a growing team focused on Project Rene, it was mentioned that they were at the start of their journey in making the game "over the next few years". In the meantime, they plan on continuing to release new packs, kits and updates to The Sims 4. As part of the stream, they also announced that long-requested babies will be coming to The Sims 4 in 2023.