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thesims

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The Sims 4 and The Simulation Hypothesis

This essay will explore the possibilities and implications of the simulation hypothesis using The Sims 4 as a reference. It will firstly address the issue of whether or not the Sims are actually part of a computer simulation, and if so, what type of simulation it may be. Would a particularly bright Sim be able to prove that she was in a simulation? And what would it mean for the player and the game if that proof was uncovered? It stands to reason that for a Sim to be aware of the simulated nature of their existence, they must be capable of thought. Does this also mean your Sims could be conscious beings? Are Sims self-aware? This train of thought opens up big-picture questions in regards to our own reality. If the Sims are all part of a computer simulation controlled by us, the player, how do we know that we ourselves aren’t also part of a computer simulation? If so, what kind of simulation would we belong to? What would be the reason for that simulation to exist? Although there are a multitude of possible answers, the simplest could be found in considering our reasons for playing The Sims in the first place. It’s also important to consider the religious implications of running simulation games like The Sims. What is our relationship with the Sims that we control? We created them, we built the world that they inhabit, and if we desire we can make them do whatever we want. We have complete omniscience over their world, being able to observe any space at any time. We can end their lives at a whim. Therefore, when playing The Sims, are we like god? The final point of this essay will consider The Sims in relation to Plato’s allegory of the cave, which will be explained further on. The allegory links The Sims to a number of science fiction texts that deal with simulation, most notably The Matrix, and provides some insight into how different types of simulation might function.

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