Maxis' long-running Sims franchise launched its new iteration, The Sims 4, on PC today. Unfortunately, EA did not provide us a review code early enough to fully evaluate the game in advance. I am currently playing it, and planning to have the review later this week – but here are some of my early impressions.

I'm a huge fan of the franchise, so I've been waiting to see how The Sims 4 fares. Like many long-time fans, I was worried when I heard that a number of features were cut. As someone who plays every iteration and expansion, some of these cuts have been jarring and break some of the immersion for me, like not having cars to go to and from work. So far, the game plays out pretty similar to The Sims 3, minus a bunch of its features. The formula still is fun and the game is enjoyable in its own right. The Sims look better, the building tools are much more accessible, and there's some new cool traits and skills to learn. For instance, if you go into the tech track, you're going to want to hone your gamer skill. The game has tons of little touches like this, even going as far as to provide more games for your Sims as your get your gaming skill up. 

I've only spent a day with The Sims 4, and the game is a big undertaking, so I'm not confident providing a review just yet. As of right now, I have mixed feelings. I'm hoping that as I get deeper into the experience, it feels more like a step up.