How to Fix Problems With The Sims 3 Cheat Code Window

What to do when you can't activate The Sims 3 cheats on PC and Mac

Enabling cheat codes for The Sims 3 is usually a breeze; just use the appropriate keyboard shortcut to bring up the cheat console and input your code. However, if the Sims 3 cheat window isn't showing up, there are a few things you can try to get back in the game.

Instructions in this article apply to The Sims 3 for Windows and Mac. The mobile and console versions of the game do not support cheat codes.

The Sims 3 logo
 EA / The Sims Studios

Causes of Cheats Not Working in The Sims 3

Like other titles in the franchise, The Sims 3 supports hundreds of cheat codes that players can enter via a hidden console. While playing the game, you can usually bring up the cheat window using the following keyboard shortcuts:

  • For Mac, press Command+Shift+C.
  • For Windows, press Ctrl+Shift+C.

If the methods above don't work, then your keyboard could have a different configuration, or there could be a software glitch that can be resolved by flushing out the memory and starting over. Other software that utilizes keyboard shortcuts can also interfere with The Sims 3.

Once you have the cheat console working, type help and press Enter to display a list of all the cheats available for the game.

How to Fix It When the Sims 3 Cheat Window Won't Open

Try these steps in order until you can access the Sims 3 cheat window:

You can use these same troubleshooting steps to fix it when The Sims 4 cheat bar won't open.

  1. Click out of the search field. If you're in build/buy mode, make sure the search field isn't selected before you enter the cheat window shortcut.

  2. Include the Windows Key. On some Windows computers, you must use the shortcut Ctrl+Shift+Windows key+C to open the cheat console. Press and hold each of the four keys simultaneously, then release them when the cheat window opens.

  3. Include both Ctrl and Shift keys. Another keyboard shortcut you can try is Ctrl+Shift+Ctrl+Shift+C. Hold both Shift and Ctrl keys on each side of the keyboard. When all four keys are pressed, release the keys on the right side only, keeping the left side Ctrl and Shift keys held down, then press C.

    Mac users should replace any instance of Ctrl with the Command key in these keyboard shortcuts.

  4. Reboot your computer. Save the game and restart your computer, then try again. If the cheat window works this time, then there was just a temporary glitch.

  5. Disable custom mouse software. Make sure you don't have any custom cursor or mouse pointing software enabled. Such programs can interfere with the cheat console. Consider removing the software or at least not using it while you're playing The Sims 3.

  6. Close any other running software. If you have another program running that supports keyboard shortcuts, it could conflict with The Sims 3.

  7. Change AMD hotkeys. If you have an AMD video card, check the settings to see if another keyboard shortcut is interfering with The Sims 3. To disable AMD hotkeys altogether, go to the Preferences menu and select Toggle Radeon Overlay Hotkey, then press the Delete key.

  8. Restore the default settings for The Sims 3. You don't have to uninstall the game to reset it; however, you will lose any custom settings, so consider this solution a last resort.