A new update for The Sims 4 will allow players to give their trans characters mastectomy surgery scars, chest binders, and pants designed to hide penises.
The official Twitter account for The Sims revealed the new base game update for The Sims 4, allowing players to customise their Sims characters to appear to be visually trans for the first time.
Along with creating functional lightswitches and hearing aids for the first time, EA proudly boasted that for teen and older male Sims, a “top surgery” scar can be added to their bodies. “Top surgery” is a euphemism for a mastectomies, which biological women can undertake if they feel like they are a trans man, removing their breasts.
Trans male Sims could also wear a “binder top,” designed to harshly squash the breasts and conceal their appearance. Trans female Sims are not left out however, with a new “shapewear” asset for bottoms, which suggests a penis being hidden.
The Sims 4, which was originally released in 2014, began allowing greater customisation when it came to how a character presented in 2016, with all clothes able to be worn on all body types. Last May, the option for non-binary and other pronouns was rolled out, and in July, players were able to customise their Sims’ sexual orientation.
Notably, The Sims 4 has a “very unique userbase,” as admitted by their developers Maxis. 60% of players of The Sims 4 are women between the ages of 18 and 24. Women make up only 41.5% of all American video game users, and of women aged 18-29, only 9% identify as “gamers,” compared to 33% of men the same age.
A strong reaction was seen online from conservatives who were concerned as to what the game, which is advertised for children 12 and up, could be suggesting to its potentially young players. “They’re teaching young healthy girls that it’s ok to chop off their breasts,” tweeted Libs of TikTok.
Gays Against Groomers quipped that children were now able to groomed in the “metaverse,” slamming The Sims for promoting “body mutilation” and “self-harm” to children. “This is not inclusive or affirming,” they added. “It is a virtual gateway drug with real life consequences.”
This news and commentary by Jack Hadfield originally appeared on Valiant News.