One of the major things that's always been great about the sims is the ability to play sims of every sexual orientation. The other great thing is the thousands of hours of work that many glorious modders have put into various hacks that can make gameplay fully customizeable and micro-manageable, or run almost on it's own.
However, I had a little trouble making my simself because one of these hacks, ACR, has a minor drawback if you're asexual: it leads to about 90% more woohooing for everyone. Autonomously, which is the entire point of the hack Though this is a definite feature for about 95% of my sim population (unexpected children! Sims hooking up when my back is turned! Drama!) it’s a bug when it comes to sims who I want to be Ace, especially Aro-Ace sims like my simself, who in the interest of complete accuracy should have no desire at all to run amok romantically among my sims. So here’s a quick tutorial on the correct ACR and game settings for a variety of sims on the Ace spectrum, to keep them from the same rabbit-like woohooing that the rest of your sims probably participate in due to ACR.
I’m using ACR version 2. In ACR version 1 I’d simply remove sim’s tokens, which would allow only player-directed base game interactions, but that’s not an option in ACR v 2… even though I otherwise like it better due to the friendzoning and other adjustabilities.
Brief Overview of Terminology:
Asexuality Umbrella: A description of various terminologies relating to Asexuality.
Asexual – describes a person who does not experience sexual attraction. They may still desire romance, children, committed relationships. Asexual people can be sex positive, sex repulsed, sex neutral, to name a few examples, and may choose to have sex for a variety of reasons, but the “I’d tap that” feeling does not show up. This does not, on its own, preclude falling in love.
Demisexual – describes a person who experiences sexual desire only towards people that they are romantically attracted to / extremely emotionally close to. Essentially, a person who never thinks “I’d tap that,” except about people they’re already really close to.
Grey-asexual / gray ace – describes a person who experiences sexual attraction so much more rarely than the majority of the populace that they identify as part of the ace spectrum. Alternatively, this is a label sometimes used by people who don’t believe they are demisexual, but think they may be somewhere between asexual and allosexual.
Allosexual – describes a person who experiences sexual attraction. Allosexual is to Asexual as straight is to Gay, Lesbian, Bi, and Ace people, and as Cis is to Trans. It’s the “everybody who does not identify as part of the group.”
People in the asexuality umbrella may have romantic preferences for the same gender, different genders, all genders, etc. or no one.
Aromantic Umbrella: A description of various terminologies relating to Aromanticism.
Aromantic – describes a person who does not experience romantic attraction, i.e. the desire to be in a romantic relationship or perform romantic actions with other people. Aromantic people are not necessarily all asexual, but both identities are lumped together under the A in LGBTQIA.
Demiromantic – describes a person who only experiences romantic attraction to people they are already extremely emotionally close to.
Greyromantic – describes a person whose experience of romantic attraction is rare, or who believe that they exist between alloromantic and aromantic.
Alloromantic – describes a person who experiences romantic attraction: Alloromantic is to Aromantic as Allosexual is to Asexual.
People under the Aromantic umbrella may have sexual preferences for the same, other, both/all, or no gender. They may or may not enter into partnerships with other people.
Note that in real life, being aromantic or asexual is way more complicated than I can express using a mod for a fourteen year old game that was never built for this eventuality. This is literally just a guide to how to set up ACR to facilitate representing asexual sims in your game. (And I can’t give you settings to change when your sims fall in love because that’s coded into the base game, so this tutorial is primarily for asexuality.) If you are confused about the actual orientation irl, here is a useful resource. You can also ask me, but I reserve the right to dispose of all questions that seem unduly personal or in bad faith.
Aroace Sims: How to set your sim to be ACR-driven relationship proof.
This is the easiest setting to keep track of in ACR out of the three I will be talking about.
- Turn Autonomy to off
- Turn required relationship to accept woohoo to 100/100
- Friendzone anyone who hits best friends with your sim
This should prevent your sim from accepting ACR driven romantic interactions, from woohoo on down to flirts.
During character creation, or with a matchmaker poition, it helps to turn your simself’s turn ons to something you don’t use, and turn offs to something that most, if not all of your sims use. Having a lower chemistry makes sims less likely to become someone else’s ACR target. For my simself, I set my turn ons to robots and hats, and turn off to makeup.
If you make this sim after randomizing the gender preference of the neighborhood, you can simply proceed without setting a gender preference. If your sim gets assigned a gender preference accidentally or through randomizing the neighborhood, however, you can simply remove it via sim blender.
With judicious use of the friend zone, your sim can now live their pixellated life unbothered by ACR while the rest of your neighborhood slowly devolves into a love dodecahedron.
I have as yet found no way to prevent your sim from showing how many “bolts” they have with others in their relationships panel, as that assessment is done by the game itself, but it doesn’t bother me unduly.
With the caveat that there are lots of different experiences that go into being demi, one situation that I have been able to simulate using ACR settings is experiencing attraction only to committed partners.
- Set autonomy to “spouse only”
- Set required relationship to accept woohoo to 70/70 (the basegame setting for falling in love)
- Friendzone sims with high relationships whose ACR settings might cause them to attempt romance interactions with your sim.
- If desired, set cheating to “totally faithful”
Of note: there are demi people who are in poly relationships IRL. Monogamy, Romantic attraction, and Sexual attraction all appear to be feelings with wide spectrums, but I haven’t yet fully worked out how to successfully play a poly relationship in the sims game due to hard-coded jealousy interactions, and that deserves its own tutorial anyway. Setting “totally faithful” does guarantee that your sim will not accept woohoo or flirting etc. from sims other than their spouse though, so it can be used as a way to guarantee that ACR will not try and pair your sim off if they already have a partner.
Romantic Ace Sims:
Settings somewhere between my preferred setting for aroace sims and demi sims are ideal for sims who have romantic partners. Options include:
- Setting autonomy to zero or “spouse only”
- Using base game romantic interactions only, since the required relationships are higher than standard ACR settings and non-autonomous.
- Setting required relationship to 100/100 will reduce the amount of times a sim will agree to an ACR woohoo, because a perfect relationship score is not long-lasting.
These settings essentially allow you as the player to determine if your sim enters a romantic relationship and what they do in it, while ACR runs amok for your other sims.
Assorted Other Settings to Consider:
In ACR 2.0, lots can be set to disallow woohoo, or as “churches” where sims’ ACR timers do not run down. This will mean that other sims living on the lot will not woohoo autonomously, but it works well as extra insurance for an ace sim living alone… and keeps party guests from ruining their pixilated sheets.
I have yet to discover a way to prevent sims from rolling wants to woohoo, especially on dates, but those go away after a while.
Ideal Family Size: This affects a sim’s likelihood of autonomously trying for baby, based on how many kids they currently have versus how many they want. Setting this (default is at -1) will not change your sim’s likelihood to initiate or accept woohoo, but it will change the likelihood that any autonomous woohoo will be try for baby.
I use the IDF to determine if a sim will adopt, spawn a plantbaby, or summon aliens to have an alien spawn as well. It’s one of the four settings I use in my Relationship Satisfaction Calculation as well.
Birth Control: essentially reduces a sim’s “risky” woohoo chances to zero, iirc.
Unmarried TFB off/on: toggle this per sim to determine if they will or won’t try for baby without being married.
Libido and Monogamy
Since ACR allows me to set up libido (‘autonomy’) and monogamy as scales, I do so.
Jealousy: This only effects ACR “casual” romantic interactions, so a sim who initiates “woohoo” instead of “casual woohoo” with a party other than their partner will still register with the game, and their partner, as cheating, using the default maxis check for this. Fortunately, this won’t happen autonomously, and they’re still subject to “getting caught.” If you intend to play an ace sim in an open relationship with an allosexual partner while avoiding ACR drama, the ace sim’s jealousy setting should be set to zero and the allosexual sim’s monogamy setting should be set to anything other than totally faithful.
Monogamy (cheating): Sims can have fluid settings here, totally faithful, or you can set the highest flirting, kiss, woohoo they will accept. This is useful for sims in open relationships who might autonomously see townies or off-lot playables. If you intend to play an ace sim in an open relationship with an allosexual partner while avoiding ACR drama, the ace sim’s jealousy setting should be set to zero and the allosexual sim’s monogamy setting should be set to anything other than totally faithful.
Libido (autonomy): I randomize my allosexual sims’ libidos. A setting of anything other than zero or ‘spouse only’ means that sims will attempt woohoo with eligible sims after a certain number of game hours since they last did so. Higher numbers mean fewer hours, lower numbers mean more hours. This means that an ace sim set to “spouse only” autonomy, partnered with a high libido allosexual sim, will still end up woohooing a lot.
So, in conclusion: ACR settings do a lot of different, interesting things, and if you want ace sims in your game, but also want ACR, it's totally possible to have both. Also, happy pride month.