With the exception of the first game, each new series in the "The Sims" franchise has a program called "Create a Sim" that allows the creation of characters. After being created and saved through this program, the Sim becomes available in-game.
As of April 2015, the latest installation, "Sims 4," has the most detailed "Create a Sim" program yet. This program is available for download so users can create Sims even if they do not have access to the game. After installing, downloading and running the software, a user can first name the Sim by clicking on the white banner at the top-left of the screen. The names can also be randomized.
Next, a user must assign the Sim's age, voice sound, walking style and gender. Below this panel sits another that lists the Sim's aspirations and traits. This affects the Sim's in-game behavior, goals and personality. Aspirations go through different levels as the game progresses, and changing a Sim's aspiration resets his progress; IGN explains that care should be taken during this stage of Sim creation.
Finally, a user gets to change the Sim's physical appearance. From height and weight to small details such as the angle of a nose, Sims are fully customizable. The Sim's outfit is also up for customization, and "Create a Sim" offers plenty of options for different clothes and accessories. When the Sim is created, it can be saved and imported into the game.