How to Play "The Sims 4" in Windowed Mode

by Seth Amery ; Updated September 22, 2017

Like most good PC games, The Sims 4 has a wealth of options you can tweak to configure the game to your needs. One such option is the ability to run the game in a window, as opposed to full screen. Setting The Sims 4 to windowed mode lets you quickly tab out to another window and lets you reduce the screen size without stretching out the graphics.

Option One: Changing Resolution Options In-Game

Launch The Sims 4 and let it load to the main menu. Clicking the ellipses in the upper right-hand corner lets you open the Options menu.

In the Graphics tab, you'll see an option called Display Type. By default, it's set to Fullscreen, but you can toggle this to Windowed and click "Apply Changes" to instantly switch to a windowed mode.

Option Two: Adjusting Origin Launch Settings

If you'd prefer to start the game in windowed mode, there's an out-of-game way to set it up.

First, open up Origin. In your list of games, right-click "The Sims 4" and select "Game Properties." This makes a pop-up window appear where you can type in launch arguments.

Type "-w" into the box without quotation marks. Click "Apply" and launch your game; this command forces "The Sims 4" to launch in windowed mode by default instead of fullscreen.

Bonus Round: Further Improving In-Game Performance

If you're running windowed mode due to performance issues and performance is still a problem, you can change a few additional options in-game. Opening the options menu and enabling Laptop Mode will toggle graphics that aren't so hardware intensive.

For the most part, you may not notice a difference; colors are a little less vivid and the lighting is a little weaker, but the Sims and their lots still look smooth.

About the Author

Seth Amery is a long-time writer whose specialties extend to all areas of video games, having written thousands of tutorials, fully-featured strategy guides and reviews across all platforms. His experience also includes one-on-one relationships with major gaming publishers to write previews on upcoming games, establish interviews with game designers and hold early game giveaways.