The Sims 3 Generations Imaginary Friends and Making 'em Real
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The Sims 3 Generations Imaginary Friends

Getting One, What they Do, and Making Them Real

Sims 3 Generations Guide:
Chemistry | Children | Teenagers | Adults/Elder | Afterschool Activities
Day Care | Boarding School | Pranks | Imaginary Friend

Sims 3 Generations: Pillow Fighting with an Imaginary Friend
But no other Sims can see him!

Imaginary Friends are a new feature of The Sims 3 Generations. It allows kids to socialize and have fun with this entity that no one else can see. It looks absurd as you'd expect, coming from a child's imagination. As you can tell in the shot above, this new form of life is basically a rag doll come to life.

Getting an Imaginary Friend
The process of getting an imaginary friend begins as a Toddler. If your toddler was created in Create-A-Sim, there's a chance that it will load with a doll in its inventory. If it doesn't, you can try moving in the household again. No need to recreate them. If the child is born via try for baby, it reportedly will come in the mail. You require this doll, and there's no known way to cheat and get one at this time.

Greetings from the Lostso Family! We heard that you have a new addition to the family and would like to congratulate you! The Lostso family has sent Azure Dreamweaver a special toy. Gain relationship with it to reveal its special gifts as she ages. Retrieve the mail to place it in Azure's inventory.

Growing Up Together
Your toddler should play with the doll very often. Give it a name, and play/sing to it. You will see a message that it has become a very special toy to your Sim. This is a good sign that it will age up with them. When the toddler has a birthday, the process continues as a child.

"Steel has become a very special toy for Azure Dreamweaver. Who knows what will happen if she keeps playing with it? Maybe they'll stay as good friends when she grows up!"

Again, if you want the bond to form between child and imaginary friend, you'll need to keep playing with it into childhood. That's fine as it fulfills needs. Have tea parties and sing/play with the toy as often as possible. You will eventually see a message that you should set the doll down, so it can look about the world. Drag it out of the inventory and your Sim's Imaginary Friend can now interact like a normal Sim with the child. No one else will see it, which can lead to some funny moments.

Sims 3 Generations: The Imaginary Friend as a Child

The Imaginary Friend can play, pillow fight, get your Sim a snack, and even clean up for the kid. Just treat it nice and build the relationship. Interact as much as possible. When you're super good friends, the option to Offer to Make Real will appear on the social interaction menu. If you have the Imaginary Friend Metamorphium potion, which any Sim can learn to make through Chemistry. If you didn't learn Chemistry, your child or older may get an opportunity to make the Imaginary Friend real. You'll need to collect a rainbow gem and deliver it to the Science Lab in order to do so. If you know for sure you'll want to do this, you can start looking for the gem early and hope to find it. Check the consignment shop from time to time as well. You never know what's on sale -- maybe a rainbow gem! I probably wouldn't mess with looking for a rainbow gem for days, I'd rather learn Chemistry instead. You're guaranteed to get one of these potions upon discovery.

If you can't accomplish bringing the doll to life in the childhood age, fear not. It will grow up along with your Sim at this point, and just gets bigger as a teenager. The perk to doing it earlier is getting control over the trait selection.

Sims 3 Generations: The Imaginary Friend drinks the potion Imaginary Friend Metamorphium
The Imaginary Friend is made into a real Sim

Once your Imaginary Friend is made real, they'll change in appearance to that of a Sim and have needs and abilities like any other regular Sim. It's a route of adding another member to your household, although it has a special history for your Sim. They can turn to doll form at any time. During that time, they can't have any romantic interactions, and needs fall just like normal. I suppose EA didn't want weird woohoo with a strange non-Sim creature, as is the norm. This transformation is just a cosmetic effect, really, but it's a good one. When the Imaginary Friend made real is in Sim form, it will be approachable by any Sim for romance, including the doll's original owner, which is kind of interesting as far as story potential goes.

To the cheaters out there, know that triggering the age transition for your child does still allow the imaginary friend to grow up later, so long as it's become a good friend in that life state. You can even trigger age transition on the friend once it's in a form that can be seen by the kid.

I'm not aware of any time limit on doing this. The doll just seemed to get bigger as it aged, and it's likely you could transform it into adulthood. Your Sim has been talking to it all those years, and as the message states when it transforms, it's time to prove that "you're not crazy".

This should give you a good understanding of the Imaginary Friend system in The Sims 3 Generations. Comment on the forum or drop me an email (address on home page) if you have any suggestions or corrections that would improve this guide.

Share Tips and FAQs (123)

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1 2 3 > Last
Simmy says...
I don't know why everyone says the imaginary friend is ugly or scary I think its really cute and funny. ;=l
10th April 2014 4:47pm
A PERSON says...
I agree I think it is ADORABLE!!!!!
23rd April 2014 2:29am
Brandon says...
I have a whole family of imaginary friends.
5th October 2013 4:49pm
Dawn K. says...
Am I only the one who absolutely hates the imaginary friends? My family had four children who only wanted to talk to the imaginary friends and never their siblings or parents. I turned them all back into toys! (I'm such a party pooper!)
2nd October 2013 2:40pm
Maddie says...
what I always end up doing is having my adult sims take the toy drive to some random lot I never use and drag them to the ground and leave
3rd April 2019 3:57pm
Jess says...
I find the imaginary friends pretty annoying. I don't like how they've become the top choice for toddlers/children when you allow your Sims free will. Before generations, toddlers would often choose the xylophone or peg box and gain skills. Now they choose to play with their IF doll almost all the time. And they frequently choose to do so in the most inconvenient place, like right in front of the bathroom door.

And then when the toddler becomes a child, all they want to do is play with their imaginary friend and if you give the child tasks (do homework/learn a skill/etc) then the IF goes around placing booby traps. >:-(

I wouldn't mind so much if the interactions were more balanced with the other choices, I just really dislike how IFs take over the toddler/child's life.

30th August 2019 1:56am
Tamsen says...
I have left them in junk yard and even taken them on vacation and left in a underground tavern never to see them again
31st May 2020 1:04pm
Whitney says...
So I started playing the legacy challenge and not only have I *not* been getting imaginary friends for most of my children (Thankfully!) but there's something wrong with the only imaginary friend that's become "special" to my sim. I have an alien child who has a male IF and when it walks around the house, instead of looking like the creepy doll thing, it looks like a normal sim child. No weird hair color, no doll-like appearance, not even the imaginary friend clothes! It's a sim child with a light over it's head. Has anyone else had this glitch?
This is actually kind of common. You can actually use ResetSim on him but it's not guaranteed to fix him.
10th July 2013 1:21pm
abby says...
i cant get my imagnary friend to grow up
6th April 2014 3:23pm
Grace says...
your sim probably didn't have a good relationship with the doll
6th July 2014 7:15pm
okay this is urgent!!!

~ I threw a slumber party
~ Iwas told to set my imaginary doll Boinky down
~I put it on the floor
~ my friend picked it up and started playing with it
~ trying to get it back, I deleted the friend
~ the doll also got deleted
~ it isn't in my inventory
~ WHAT DO I DO NOW?????????????????????????????????????????????
23rd April 2014 4:20am
janet m webster says...
(probably too late for this time) - but in a case like that DON'T SAVE GAME!!!
13th May 2014 5:21am
gladys says...
Same thing happened to me but with my child. So now I have a long lost child who's twin is still with me. It happened when my stupid rich elder husband invited a paparazzi in and she wouldn't stop interfering.
16th July 2017 9:44am
hello says...
okay so I have generations and all that and i've had like 5 toddlers and babies and none of them ever got a imaginary I doing something wrong?
26th May 2014 3:18am
Cierra says...
Don't worry, is not you..the imaginary friends are not guaranteed with every's more like a 20%/90% chance of each of your children getting one
29th May 2014 8:48pm
NA7 says...
I have had three children so far. My first two boys got IFS but I just had my third and he didn't receive anything. You're not always gonna get it.
22nd July 2014 5:08pm
Llama says...
If you make your toddlers in create a sim then your toddlers should have imaginary dolls in their inventory.
25th October 2015 3:34pm
gladys says...
You probably have to check your mail.
16th July 2017 9:48am
Esme says...
My Toddlers doll moved, why did this happen?
6th May 2014 3:21pm
Hi says...
This is just part of the magic of having one as it is imaginary. It happens to everyones
5th August 2017 10:06am
musicnerd42 says...
I'm not sure how many people are still looking at this but if you have the World Adventures expansion pack, you can find the rainbow gem in France at the mausoleum. It's in one of the chests that are located in one of the five tombs.
6th July 2014 9:30pm
NA7 says...
Yeah,before my child was even born I found over 5 rainbow gems. Now that he is a child I have received the opportunity and I am trying at the moment trying to figure out if I should accept because everything I get from foreign countries I keep including books and nectar. I also bought one from the consignment shop which I visit every Monday. Sometimes they have it and sometimes they don't but every country I have been to has it and it is pretty easy to find. I found a few on The Little Island in France by excavating some piles which appear often on the island. I went camping there for ten days after me and my husband Fahed had just married. My first child was not born yet so I was not sure if I was gonna need it but as I said I keep everything. The Little Island spawns piles almost every morning. There is a 8 out of 10 percent chance it will spawn as I have observed. No need to keep looking in a CS if you have WA. Just go to France for 3 days or more if you like.
22nd July 2014 5:18pm
NA7 says...
The Little Island is at the end of the river. There are some houses on the edge before you travel down. It is a short swim,about 10 to 30 Sim minutes. The Little Island is also a great place to camp especially if you have not reached Visa level 3 or don't have a vacation home. You probably want a portable fire because it is great for fishing. You can find a whole bunch of relics and grapes just sitting around too. Glow butterflies,water beetles,roaches,and many other insects are very common. You can either camp around the tomb or in it. The tomb is open so it's kinda nice to camp in but it's a bit small so there is no room for huge tents or large families to camp in but around it there is a lot of space. My main point is it's a great place for rainbow gems if you have WA.
22nd July 2014 5:25pm
sas says...
how long does it take for the doll to come in the mail??

Please help!
1st July 2014 6:27am
Scott says...
If the baby is born before midnight, the doll will arrive the following morning. If the baby was born after midnight, the doll may not arrive until the next morning. The doll will go directly to the child's inventory when another Sim has performed the Get Mail action.
24th July 2014 8:26pm
Stephf. says...
My toddler does not have any options to interact with the doll except to change the name. Did I do something wrong?
Is it the doll that she got in the mail? Is the doll on the ground, in the inventory?
16th July 2013 7:52am
Molly says...
my sims friend wont grow up so i assumed they had to be BEST friends so i tried while she was a child still its not working yet,maybe i could cheat her a trait to help? well if it doesnt work ill report it to you guys.
Sounds like it's going to be friendship or better at toddlerhood or it doesn't happen to me unfortunately.
15th July 2013 9:07am
Ally says...
i have a family of double couples and they both got pregnant around the same time and they had babies and then i got the generations ep while still babies. is it possible for the two kids to get the dolls for the imaginary friends?
30th November 2013 8:01pm
SIms All Around says...
Yeah, usually moving the household out and in does the trick!
6th October 2018 3:23am
Sarah says...
The imaginary friend grew up with the sim into a kid and then it turned back into a doll a couple of hours later and now it is stuck to my sim. I can have tea parties and sing to it but it won't change back! Help!
7th October 2013 5:58am
kira says...
so when a toddler ages up to a child it will not come alive but then you make the child play with it and host tea parties and then after a while it will come alive right?
12th July 2013 6:30pm
Scott says...
Not exactly, Kira. Your child must form a very strong relationship with the IF...Best Friend may be enough, but shoot for BFF. When the relationship is high enough, the Child Sim (or Teen) gets an interaction of "Offer to Make Real", provided the Sim in question has a method of doing so. I always have every kid go through the Chemistry stuff, and the Imaginary Friend Metamorphium Potion is one they will, eventually, make. It isn't spontaneous.
24th July 2014 8:36pm
MarkusFire says...
If you have twins, the note your receive is different. For me, it said "Two mystical gifts have arrived for the twins in the mail. Nana LuLu retrieved them from a far away land. It is said to have mystical powers if relationship is gained with it. Discover its mysteries as the children age. Obtain the mail to put the toys in the twins' inventories."
30th December 2013 1:30am
Sims Girl says...
What if you do not want an imaginary friend?
27th December 2013 7:47am
Someone says...
Then sell it. When you get it in the toddlers inventory, drag the doll to the thing on the left side of the inventory and sell it
7th August 2014 10:41am
Sera says...
I would suggest that upon its arrival, either sell it to the inventory sell menu, or put somewhere out of reach (the Family Inventory should work perfectly.)
19th September 2015 4:55pm
Jess says...
I know this comment is old but in case there are people still checking here for advice... (I know I do).
Playing a toddler mania challenge last night, I discovered that you can't sell imaginary friend dolls and the game won't let you put them in the family inventory either. What I ended up doing was dragging the dolls into the cribs to stop the toddlers doing nothing but playing with them all the time but every now and then a doll would escape (teleport to the ground) and I'd have to drag it back to the crib.
Someone above suggests putting the dolls in an adult's inventory and then leaving them on the ground of a different lot. Another thing which I haven't tried but ought to work is using the delete object command on the doll which you can do when you have testing cheats enabled (see the cheats page).
30th August 2019 12:57am
Sam Winchester says...
I would also like to point out that if you have the Supernatural expansion you can buy a Scary Bearys: Imaginary Friend in the Kids Toys section. So you can always buy one rather get it in the mail.
28th July 2014 3:50pm
Rosy says...
HELP!! I sent all my children to boarding school and they came back but I want to change the imaginary friend into a human but it wont grow HELP!!!
Having them age up at boarding school could prevent it from growing up with them, also when the Imaginary Friend is in the Sim's inventory, it will not likely age up with them.
15th June 2014 8:38pm
Rosy says...
ok thank you i always wanted you to comment back on what i said
thank you so much!
23rd June 2014 6:58pm
Yol says...
I just wanted to add something. I made my imagnary friend real, and then made her (It was a girl) have a romantic realationship with her "owner". In human form, they woohooed, and she got pregnant. when the child was born he was able to transform into the doll form himself! how cool is that..
22nd August 2013 12:11pm
Simmerpeep says...
So my doll just changed into an imaginary friend. She turned into a sim though, she doesn't look like a robot/toy! Do you know why? His is really confusing.
9th February 2014 12:06am
SIms All Around says...
They always turn into Sims when they are real. You must initiate turning them back to toy form.
6th October 2018 3:22am
Just a Tip says...
If you installed generations, and didn't get a doll on a family made before installations was installed. EX: Installing generations after a baby has turned into a toddler. Try moving your sims into another household, my toddler automatically got the doll, I was so excited!
17th May 2013 12:44pm
Voidsabre says...
My wife's sims just had twins, and when she went to the mailbox to get the imaginary friend dolls, it wouldn't let her. She deleted and replaced the mailbox, but the dolls were gone. Is there any way to get them back?
16th May 2013 1:48pm
LOLZIES says...
I got the exact same problem
31st October 2015 11:18pm
Lady Zephyra says...
To turn in the rainbow gem, click on it in your child's inventory. To make the doll an imaginary friend, drag it out of the child's inventory and set it on the floor once your child ages from toddler to child age. It will automatically age up too and become the imaginary friend. I'm having issues turning in the 4500 simoleons, it's an opportunity, my Sims have the cash, but the yellow turn in isn't lit up and available. Very frustrating.
9th May 2013 9:29pm
Elisabeth says...
I have the exact same problem. I couldn't donate the gem to the facility by clicking on it (in appaloosa plains) but I just clicked on the gem in my child's inventory. Now, however, when asked to deliver the money, which I have, there is no button and no other way around it. The blue star is over the facility but when clicked all that appears is the normal hospital/facility interactions. I was thinking I could move towns and complete the opportunity in a different hospital but I'm worried the opportunity will just disappear. Have you had any luck, is it just a matter of time?
28th September 2013 1:29pm
Alisa says...
How long does it take to come in the mail?
22nd October 2013 5:03pm
kaitlyn says...
it is usually right away, at least in my experiences, if not it will only take a day or two.
5th July 2014 7:36pm
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