How To Fix the Sims 4 Face Glitch

Imagine yourself seated in your gaming chair, ready to step into the fantasy life of the Sims. You start The Sims 4 and find that your once-attractive Sims are suddenly a polygonal mess. And you have no clue how this happened. This was the bizarre reality of The Sims 4 face glitch, an unintended consequence of the April 18 update.

How To Fix the Sims 4 Face Glitch

Let’s dig deeper into this nefarious bug and its current status.

Anatomy of the Glitch

Post-April 18th update, many The Sims 4 players have experienced a bizarre facial feature reshuffle in their Sims.

The glitch distorts Sims’ eyes, mouth, and body shape. Players report their Sims sport distorted face structures, with misplaced positioning of the face, eyes, and mouth. The transformations range from misshapen eyes with abnormally large pupils to strange underbites.

The glitch also extends to body shape and causes Sims to appear cross-eyed and even affects teeth positioning. If you’ve created Sims with spaced-out teeth, you could notice that the teeth are squished together. Some Sims have even experienced dramatic skin color and clothing changes.

Custom content, usually the prime suspect in these situations, isn’t the trigger. The glitch affects both the base game and custom content. Granted, some of the most extreme examples of distortions seem to appear on Sims that use CC.

The Reach of the Glitch

The glitch’s reach was fairly extensive.

It Affects All Sims

Whether it’s a Sim downloaded from the gallery into Create-a-Sim (CAS) or a previously created Sim in existing saves, the bug spares none. The chances are high that your Sims’ faces will be hilariously distorted whether you’re using custom content (CC) or mods or your saves are new or old. This indiscriminate glitch even affects the premade families in The Sims 4.

Growing Together

The unwanted surprise shipped with the base game update, but the Growing Together expansion pack faced a similar issue. This pack included an adorable feature in which child-aged Sims would get a loose tooth and perhaps a visit from the Tooth Fairy. However, losing a tooth during childhood triggered random changes in appearance due to the glitch.

Some of the changes involved skin tone and mismatched outfits. The incorrect modifications to the Sim who had a loose tooth continued as they grew up.

The Community Response

The player community’s reaction could be described as a mix of confusion, amusement, and disbelief. A Sim with an oversized underbite, razor-sharp teeth, or strange eyes can be quite a sight. However, while the bug is funny, frustration overshadows the fun.

The Sims 4 is more than a game for many players. It’s a creative outlet, a storytelling platform, and a medium for self-expression. When a bug like a face glitch disrupts these aspects, it can become a source of annoyance and disappointment.

Over 700 players reported the issue on the EA Answers forum within a day. Before the bug report thread on EA Answers closed, around 1360 people checked off “me too” to signify they’ve also encountered the bug. The Sims Direct Team responded that it was already on the case, confirming they were investigating the issue.

The Developer’s Response

The Sims 4 team acknowledged the bug in response to the reports, assuring players they were working on it. A day after the update, they confirmed that a fix was coming.

As of the latest update on April 20, 2023, they stated that all Sims created before the April 18 update will return to looking as they should. This meant that Sims created before the April 18th update would be normalized, and all Sims created after it would appear slightly different now that their faces render correctly.

The developers also stated they were working on fixing other issues, such as control changes for PlayStation and Xbox. They promised to improve the console experience and release the fix as soon as possible, asking for the community’s patience.

Losing the Loose Tooth

While waiting for the official fix, players discovered a temporary workaround for the Growing Together expansion glitch. This involved fixing the tooth before aging up a child Sim. If a Sim has already aged up, players aged them down to a child, fixed the tooth, and then aged them back again. While not a guaranteed fix, it worked for many players who didn’t want freakish-looking children in their game before a patch rolled out.

The “loose tooth” feature linked to the Growing Together expansion glitch was temporarily disabled by EA on PC and Mac. However, it was not disabled on consoles, where it contributed to a similar issue. After some investigation, the team has also managed to fix this bug.

Debugging the Causes

So the bugs have been patched, and that sounds like fantastic news. But why does this problem happen, anyway?

It Has Happened Before

Although the bug caused inconveniences, the core gameplay remained largely intact this time. This face glitch isn’t as severe as some past bugs, such as a glitch causing Sims to age abnormally fast and die of old age quickly. Or how about that bug in the Wants and Fears update that made Sims want to date their family members? Or the bug wherein the EA app mistakenly charged users a subscription fee for a free-to-play base game?

Sometimes, It Just Happens

Before the Growing Together update, the High School Years pack, in particular, has recently acquired the reputation of being a terrarium of bugs, but this problem has a broader reach. All games and computer programs are prone to bugs. It’s a nearly unavoidable byproduct of how programming logic works. Complex programs with many unique systems running together, like The Sims 4, are naturally vulnerable.

However, the problem seems to have become more apparent in newer updates and packs, illustrating the potential troubles from the games-as-services model. Perhaps The Sims 4 needs a bit of a breather, a downtime without new content streaming in, to give the devs more time to focus on fixing and improving the already vastly diverse and colorful content.

The Good Stuff

This bug may have overshadowed other elements of the April 18 update, but it still had several neat things to offer. It introduced new underwear options for teens and older Sims and new decor placement options for various bathroom items.

The update also sets the stage for the upcoming kits – Greenhouse Haven and Basement Treasures, and two more yet to be announced.

Glitching Out

The Sims 4 face glitch has undoubtedly brought a touch of the absurd to our beloved simulation game. It has annoyed, entertained, and confused many people who didn’t see it coming once they booted their game after the update. Luckily for the players, the bug has been patched, and their Sims should return to normal. Another Sims story has reached a happy ending.

Have you experienced a broken face glitch in your game? Tell us more in the comment section below.

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