Hello and welcome to another oh-so-wonderful episode of Sims 3 errors. Haha. Wish I didn’t have a reason to make these posts but once again — errors! As with all game problems, try removing all mods and CC if you are still experiencing problems. For the record, I am not using ANY mods or CC in my game.
I describe 2 problems in this episode. If you have the first problem, chances are you may end up with the second problem eventually — that is what appears to happen, from reading about the problem on the Internet. Nevertheless …
A Sim dies and no Grim Reaper shows up!
Okay, so this doesn’t sound like that bad of a problem, but it actually is. What was happening in my own game was that Sims were dying of old age (most of the town was pretty old now, so I expect many more deaths to come), and they would just float there like a ghost forever because no Grim Reaper would show up to take their souls away. This also means no gravestones and any NPC spectators caught mourning at the scene of the death won’t move, they just keep mourning away since you can’t control their actions. Also, you cannot edit your town or anything because “a death is in progress”.
As I mentioned before, I play with no mods or CC in this game. I have not befriended the Grim Reaper or in any way affected that particular NPC. He simply has never showed up for a single death in my town. I am not sure how or why this game error occurs but it does. Using testingcheatsenabled and trying to force the Grim Reaper NPC to show up (by shift+left clicking mailbox) is also a futile effort — he won’t show up. It’s like he doesn’t exist.
SOLUTION: The solution is luckily pretty simple if you just want the death to keep progressing. There’s 2 ways of going about this, depending on what you want to do:
1. Have testingcheatsenabled on. When a death occurs and the ghost is just floating there, shift+click the ghost and choose Trigger Age Transition. This will cause the ghost to become an urn/gravestone, which will be located in the mausoleum of your town, and all your other Sims will go about doing their own thing like it never happened. Yep, that’s the downside — nobody will get the appropriate mourning death moodlet because it’s like it never happened, although you will have the gravestone at least as proof. If your dead Sim had any significant others though, they will get the appropriate heartbroken moodlet.
2. You can use the ResetSim [name] cheat instead. However, what this will do is cause your dead/dying Sim to come back to life and they will restart at the beginning of their life stage. I much prefer solution 1 to solution 2 because it keeps the game moving the way it should, but if you didn’t really want your Sim to die in the first place, option 2 is good.
Unfortunately, if you REALLY want the Grim Reaper to show up, I haven’t got a way of solving that at the moment. My solution would be to copy your family into the game library and move them into a new save file in a fresh new town. In theory, since it is a brand new save file with presumably no glitches, the Grim Reaper should show up for a death in that town. (I have not tested this though).
So you got the death to go on, everything is hunky dory right? It’s the Sims 3 — where there is one glitch, another ten will pop up. If you have the no grim reaper bug, chances are, you have the next error as well:
I cannot go into edit town mode, have a Sim move or travel. It says there is a death in progress on the lot but nobody is dying!
There are different ways to end up with this glitch. The solution I provided above for fixing the no grim reaper thing and letting the death continue may lead to this error. More commonly, it seems to occur when people delete a ghost (with moveobjects, and going into build/buy mode and simply deleting the ghostly Sim).
I first discovered this error when one of my Sims could no longer use the phone or be clicked on. “No problem,” I thought. I encountered this before. “I’ll just move her out and back in.” But then I realized I couldn’t click the computer either. Or the shower. Or the easel. Or … anything! Noticing that there’s not much left to do but perhaps move my entire family to a new save file (it’s so glitchy anyway, might as well restart fresh), I tried to go into Edit Town mode to copy the family and their house into the library. That was when I got the pop up saying there was a death in progress and I cannot go into Edit Town mode. But there is nobody dying on my lot. The last person who died did not have a Grim Reaper showed up and I had simply cheated with the Age Transition to make her into a tombstone. That was many Sim days ago; nobody was dying now.
Reading about the problem online did not get me very far. Many people simply gave up and restarted their families. There honestly is not much you can do without the help of a mod.
SOLUTION: If you are like me and wanted to save the family at the expense of losing your progress in your neighbourhood, then try this method: Download this mod, nrass StoryProgression and install it (there are many websites that tell you how to install Sims 3 mods, I will not explain it here). With this mod, run your game. Now, go into neighbourhood map view and click some other house that has a Sim family in it. You should see a new menu option that says nrass. Click that, and then click on change active family. This will now change your active family to this new one — congrats, you finally got out of your buggy lot without using Edit Town mode!
Now the rest is pretty simple. You can finally go into Edit Town mode, so do that. Once in Edit Town mode, go to the family you want to save and Split Up household. Ordinarily you would probably just try saving the family to the library as is, but the game will give you the pop up saying there is a family tragedy occurring at the moment and they cannot be saved to the game library, so Split Up household is you best option. However, you’re not going to split up your household — just move every one to the clipboard. Once they are in the clipboard, click on the family and now save them to library.
As for the house, it is now empty. You can easily save the household with furniture to the game library as well.
Now, go back to the Main Menu of the game and make a brand new game (new town, same town, doesn’t matter). In your brand new town, go to Edit Town mode and place the house on a lot, then move your family back in (pick furnished house so all objects are in the house as well). Everything should be working perfectly fine! Your Sims will retain their family relationships with one another. They will still have their jobs and retirement pensions. Any gravestones on the lot will still be there. The downside — paintings and photographs are gone and, of course, your entire neighbourhood is reset, so if your Sim had a fling with the neighbour or some beef with the guy down at the bar, it’s all gone now and those NPC’s ages are reset. However, I personally feel that is a small price to pay to continue your Sim family’s life.
Lastly, feel free to remove the mod if you don’t really want to use it from your game, you won’t need it anymore after you’ve moved your family. We only needed it to get into Edit Town mode :)