The Sims 3 is the third installment in the highly popular Sims series, and as with all the other Sims games, older and newer alike, a plethora of different expansions were released for it over the years. As a matter of fact, the Sims 3 holds the record in this regard, as it has received a total of 11 expansions, which is more than any other Sims game released to date.
In this article, we’ll be listing all the Sims 3 expansions and stuff packs ever released, providing a brief overview of each one.
First, let’s take a look at all the main expansions i.e. those expansion packs that feature a wide selection of new content which includes not only items, furnishings, and clothes, but also a variety of new features and gameplay mechanics.
Release date: November 18, 2009
The very first Sims 3 expansion pack, World Adventures focuses on travelling and going on adventures abroad.
It allows the player to take their Sims on a vacation to three entirely new locations based on Egypt, France, and China. The player can then explore these new sub-neighborhoods, explore tombs filled with secrets and traps, go on quests, find treasures, and acquire and level up unique new skills: martial arts, photography, and nectar making. It also adds mummies as new unique creatures that the sims can interact with.
That said, World Adventures is an interesting expansion but also not a very high-priority one if you don’t plan on spending time exploring pyramids or learning martial arts.
Release date: June 1, 2010
The second expansion was titled Ambitions and its primary focus were new career paths and new skills.
It introduces five brand-new careers: Firefighter, Investigator, Ghost Hunter, Stylist, and Architectural Designer. These new careers allow the player more control over what their Sim is doing at work, making these new careers more fun than the original ones present in the base game, which don’t exactly allow for any degree of direct control.
Furthermore, Ambitions added three new skills: sculpting, tattooing, and inventing, all of which are pretty self-explanatory. Other notable additions include a new town called Twinbrook and an update to the game’s Real Estate system.
Overall, Ambitions is a good expansion to have, as it introduces a bunch of interesting new careers and some miscellaneous improvements.
Release date: October 26, 2010
Taking the focus away from suburban neighborhoods, Late Night introduces a sprawling metropolis called Bridgeport – well, as “sprawling” as the game’s engine can support, which is to say, not very. Nonetheless, it is quite an expansive neighborhood and it manages to achieve a sense of scale that is lacking in most Sims 3 towns.
Seeing as the focus is placed on an urban environment, the expansion is all about the careers and activities that you’d usually associate with it: film, music, night life, and so on. Film is a new career in this expansion, while music and sports careers are updated and expanded. On top of that, four new skills are introduced: piano, bass, drums, and mixology. The first three are merely new instruments that musically-inclined sims can learn to play, while mixology allows sims to work as bartenders and mix a variety of exotic drinks.
The expansion also allows sims to become celebrities, gaining certain perks by increasing their celebrity status i.e. becoming more famous. What’s more, sims can also become vampires and access many of the perks of undeath that are usually associated with mainstream vampires.
All in all, if you like playing around with bachelor sims, then this should definitely be a high-priority expansion for you!
Release date: May 31, 2011
The fourth expansion, Generations, focuses mainly on younger sims and adds a bunch of new activities that you’d associate with them.
The expansion introduces only one new profession, Daycare, and only one new skill, Chemistry. As mentioned above, the expansion focuses primarily on new activities and items associated with child and teen sims. This includes things like field trips, prom, various school activities, and more. There is also a brand-new memory system which allows the player to record specific events in a virtual scrapbook.
Ultimately, Generations is an interesting expansion that is bound to appeal to those who like to play with large families of Sims, as it takes the focus away from young adult and adult sims, unlocking a bunch of things to do with youngsters.
Release date: October 18, 2011
As the name so obviously suggests, the fifth expansion doesn’t deal so much with sims as it does with their trusty furry companions.
Pets introduces a wide variety of dog, cat, and even horse breeds that the player’s sims can own, as well as an array of activities that go along with them, including a new Riding skill. In addition to these three “main” types of pets, the expansion also introduces a number of other so-called “small pets” such as birds, lizards, rodents, snakes, and turtles.
Obviously, if you’re an animal person and would like to warm up your sims’ home by introducing a new pet to it, then this is definitely an expansion worth getting.
Release date: March 6, 2012
Moving on, we get to the sixth expansion titled Showtime, and it builds off of the celebrity theme which was introduced in Late Night.
The expansion adds a new neighborhood called Starlight Shores, and it adds three new careers that place sims in the center of attention: Magician, Acrobat, and Singer. On top of that, Showtime also adds the DJ skill, which is pretty self-explanatory. That said, the primary focus of Showtime is putting sims in the spotlight and helping them become famous entertainers.
Much like Ambitions, Showtime is an expansion that’s only really worth getting if these new careers seem appealing, as it doesn’t offer much otherwise.
Release date: September 4, 2012
World Adventures introduced mummies, Late Night introduced vampires, and the seventh expansion adds a bunch of other supernatural creatures to the mix!
This includes werewolves, fairies, witches, and zombies, and vampires are also included for those who don’t own Late Night. The expansion introduces a new town called Moonlight Falls, and there are two new professions that sims can pursue – Fortune Teller and Alchemist (paired with a new skill called Alchemy).
The new creatures/races come with a bunch of unique features and perks that aren’t available with regular sims and they can put a new spin on the old game, so if these sorts of creatures and misty mountain towns are your thing, you would definitely enjoy Supernatural!
Release date: November 13, 2012
For years, the many neighborhoods of The Sims 3 seemed stuck in a sort of perpetual spring or summer, but the eighth expansion, Seasons, changes this.
With this expansion, seasons change every seven in-game days (by default) and in addition to the obvious cosmetic weather changes, each season comes with certain activities that sims can partake in only during that particular season, including holidays and festivals. It adds two new skills to the game: snowboarding and soccer. And on top of that, oddly enough, Seasons also adds aliens to the mix.
All in all, this is an interesting expansion that many players would appreciate having, as it breathes more life into neighborhoods both new and old, and it makes the world feel very alive and dynamic.
Release date: March 5, 2013
Up next, we have a college-themed expansion, and it allows sims to enroll in the Sims University – a brand-new sub-neighborhood where they will live while working on their degree.
There are six majors to pick from: Business, Communications, Science and Medicine, Fine Arts, Physical Education, and Technology. While staying at university, sims can live in dormitories, rented houses/apartments, or they can join a sorority/fraternity. Furthermore, they can also join one of the three social groups: Nerds, Jocks, or Rebels, potentially unlocking some extra perks that can come in handy both at the university and in their future careers.
Naturally, there are also new skills that sims can acquire, which are: Street Art, Science, and Social Networking. And speaking of social networking, University Life also replaces the old Sims 3 phones with smartphones which, of course, come with some new features.
Needless to say, University Life is bound to be a great addition to the game, especially for those players who like playing with single sims or small groups of sims.
Release date: June 25, 2013
Island Paradise is a vacation-themed expansion similar to World Adventures, but this time, the focus isn’t on exotic foreign locales but on, well, an island paradise!
The expansion introduces a new neighborhood called Isla Paradiso and it adds a number of features and activities what you’d usually associate with a tropical retreat. This includes boats as a means of transportation, scuba diving in search of underwater treasure and miscellaneous collectibles, and sims can even run their own resorts or become lifeguards.
That said, Island Paradise feels like a more limited version of World Adventures that doesn’t bring as many features and activities as the aforementioned first expansion does, but if you’ve got a thing for tropical locales, it just might be worth getting.
Into the Future
Release date: October 22, 2013
The final Sims 3 expansion is titled Into the Future, and as you may have guessed, it features a bunch of high-tech time travel shenanigans.
Obviously, the main feature of this expansion is the ability to visit the future with your sims and see what the world looks like further down the line. This means that the sims are actually able to meet their own descendants in the new sub-neighborhood of Oasis Landing, which can end up being an example of either a dystopian or a utopian future.
Of course, the expansion is replete with flashy futuristic technology, and sims can learn several new skills: Advanced Technology, Bot Building, and Laser Rhythm-a-con. The first deals with – you guessed it – various forms of future tech, bot building deals with Plumbots which are a new type of sim, and Laser Rhythm-a-con is a new instrument.
Overall, Into the Future is a fitting way to end the 11-expansion run of The Sims 3, and it is a rather interesting one, too. Needless to say, Back to the Future fans are bound to have a field day with this one!
Now, while expansions contain the bulk of the extra Sims 3 content that you can get your hands on, there are also the so-called “stuff packs” – cheaper mini-expansions that add a variety of items to the game that are unified by a common theme, but without any new major features. There are a total of 9 stuff packs available for The Sims 3, and these are as follows:
- High-End Loft Stuff – Adds sleek and futuristic-looking furnishings, clothes, and tech.
- Fast Lane Stuff – Vehicle-themed stuff pack that adds a number of new cars, as well as related accessories and garage furnishings.
- Outdoor Living Stuff – Adds lawn furnishings, hot tubs, and grills.
- Town Life Stuff – Focuses on public venues such as gyms, playgrounds, and libraries.
- Master Suite Stuff – Adds luxurious, baroque-y furnishings and clothes.
- Katy Perry’s Sweet Treats – Adds various Katy Perry and candy-themed furnishings and clothes.
- Diesel Stuff – Adds Diesel clothes and furnishings.
- 70s, 80s, and 90s Stuff – Adds a variety of clothes and furnishings inspired by the iconic elements of the 70s, 80s, and 90s culture.
- Movie Stuff – Adds various movie-themed furnishings, clothes, and props.
And those would be all the expansions and stuff packs ever released for The Sims 3! Of course, there is also a ton of DLC stuff that is bought separately from any of the game’s expansions and stuff packs, including clothes, furnishings, and a good number of neighborhoods.
Finally, if you feel like we have skipped anything important, feel free to let us know in the comments and we’ll see about fixing the mistake as soon as possible.
Whether its PC or console, AAA or Indie, New-York born and raised Justin has a natural curiosity to seek out hidden gems and share them with other gamers. He also maintains his own YouTube channel in addition to writing and managing the social media profiles for GamingScan.