The Sims Unleashed Game Poster Image

The Sims Unleashed



Complex game is purrfect for animal lovers.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

If you mistreat your pets, animal control will take them away from you.


Death does not discriminate; little doggies must face the Grim Reaper too.


While players can breed dogs and cats, UNLEASHED doesn't add any new sexual elements to the game.

Not applicable

While players can buy treats and toys for their pets, game play focuses on pet activities.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that if your kids are begging for a pet, this game might help demonstrate some of the major responsibilities they'd be taking on. Sim pets need food, but they also need love and training (and they misbehave by hissing or urinating on the floor). However, note that the game is too hard to control for most young tweens -- they might get frustrated.

What's it about?

Add a new level of reality to your Sims life with this well-designed -- but complex -- expansion pack that lets you get pets from the adoption center or take in strays from the streets. With THE SIMS UNLEASHED you'll also be able to head to the new Old Town, where animals, including cats, dogs, iguanas, turtles, birds, fish, and pet goodies can be purchased (only cats and dogs become family members). You get a lot from having a pet: Letting your human Sims stare at an aquarium full of fish adds to their fun level. Cats will protect your home from mice and gophers, dogs chase skunks, and both cats and dogs are social animals, replacing the need for complicated virtual human interaction with simple warm and fuzzy animal relationships.

But as in real life, pets demand responsibility from their owners. Players must housebreak dogs to make sure they don't make a mess of the house, and you've got to clean your cat's virtual litter box. With the pets comes a whole new class of stuff to buy, such as cages, fish bowls, litter boxes, and scratching posts. And pets are not the only additions to come with Unleashed -- gardening plays a big part now, and there are new career paths, a new phone book, and new places to live.

Is it any good?


The downside is this already hard-to-control game just got harder to manage. Fast-moving animals are next to impossible to click on without pausing the game. Raising newborn kittens is extremely difficult (animal control arrives too quickly to take them away), and teaching your pets new skills takes a major time investment. Other game possibilities -- such as having your departed pets revived or setting up your own adoption center -- are much too complicated for the casual player.

Note: You need The Sims or The Sims Deluxe Edition before installing this expansion pack. Read Common Sense Media's reviews of other Sims products to learn the full range of pros and cons with this series.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the responsibility of caring for pets. If you already have a pet, do you find your Sims pet harder or easier to care for? If you don't have a pet, does this game make you want one more or less?

Game details

Platforms:Windows, Mac
Available online?Not available online
Developer:Electronic Arts
Release date:July 9, 2003
ESRB rating:T

This review of The Sims Unleashed was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.


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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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About Our Rating System

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What parents and kids say

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Adult Written byerinhunterfan April 9, 2008


This is a very fun game! It is fine if you're responsible. If you or your child (if an adult is reading this) is naughty and doesn't police themselves, I would say, hold off on this game for another few years or talk to them when they are done playing. I have lots of fun and the biggest problem I've had over the past, what, nine times I've played it was the oven caught fire. No biggie. The fire department came right away.
Adult Written bygbsfan May 22, 2016


This game is enjoyable enough and the addition of pets is fun, unfortunately, they are unable to be controlled. Though they don't die of old age, they can die from starvation and fires. When this happens, the Grim Reaper comes and makes scary noises. The game adds a racoon, which doesn't cause too many problems, but the music that plays is quite scary. Other than that, the game is fun.
What other families should know
Easy to play/use
Too much sex
Kid, 12 years old July 10, 2015
This game is awesome.
What other families should know
Easy to play/use


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