EA and Maxis are releasing a new Game Pack for The Sims 4 themed around weddings. However, Russian players won't be able to buy The Sims 4 My Wedding Stories due to the country's notoriously strict laws against homosexuality.
What's new in The Sims 4 My Wedding Stories?
As the name implies, The Sims 4 My Wedding Stories is heavily themed around weddings. Players will have the ability to have their Sims take part in a variety of pre and post-wedding events, including engagement parties, rehearsal dinners, and vow renewals. These events let players draw inspiration from wedding ceremonies all around the world, letting players choose clothing, decor, and customs for a variety of tastes. In addition to the objects and events, Sims can now visit a new location known as Tartosa, which offers a diverse array of picturesque locations and venues to suit all tastes.
Why isn't The Sims 4 My Wedding Stories coming to Russia?
Much of the marketing and storytelling for this Game Pack, including the official trailer, centers around two women, Dominique and Camille, as they plan their wedding ceremonies. Unfortunately, this marketing isn't the type that flies well with a Russian federal law introduced in 2013. Often simply called the "gay propaganda law" in English-language media, this law prohibits any children-marketed content (anyone under 18) that treats homosexuality as a societal norm, even labeling it as "propaganda." This law was heavily criticized around the world by human rights groups, lead to an uptick in violence against LGBT+ individuals in Russia, and was a hot issue during the Sochi Olympics. Because of this law, The Sims 4 was hit with an 18+ rating in Russia when it launched, but EA had no plans on changing the content for this version.
Yesterday, EA published an announcement titled 'Our Commitment to You: A Letter To Our Players from The Sims Team' explaining why their newest Game Pack won't be hitting Russian shelves. The post talks about the love stories players have made over the years and how My Wedding Stories was made to celebrate "the joy of finding love, celebrating that love and telling stories that have meaning on a personal level." However, if the team wanted this Game Pack to release in Russia, they would have to cut out Dom and Cam's story, which meant "compromising the values we live by." They conclude by telling Sims fans around the world that "we are grateful to have you in our universe."
The Sims 4 My Wedding Stories will be available for download on February 17th.