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The Sims 3 Technical Help - Slow Game

How to Recover Your Game Speed

This article was written by RockinRobin on our Forum, who published it to the Technical Help board. I've put it here to give it more visibility to guide visitors. This info is really helpful if your Sims 3 game has slowed down since your last install, and most players who don't have large amounts of RAM will experience this. Cache files build up, and these can be safely deleted. Thank you RockinRobin for sharing this with everyone.

Over the last week or so, my game has gotten so sluggish that it was almost painful to play it. I had tried numerous things to try and speed it up and I finally found the correct answer so I thought I'd share it.

The first thing I did was go through my hard drive and delete any unnecessary files to free up some disk space, but that didn't seem to help. Then I tried Pam's suggestion and move all my screenshots to a different folder to try and free up some space in the game. That didn't seem to help either. I felt like there HAD to be something, somewhere that was slowing down my game, so I started looking in all the game files. I knew I had not installed any new CC or any mods so it couldn't be that.

I came across the folder called DCbackup located in My Documents--> Electronic Arts--> The Sims 3--> DCbackup. I looked at those files and realized that they were just a bunch of backup files of all the package files ever used in the game. I did some checking to make sure it was ok to delete those and found out that it was fine. Once any CC is installed, it's there in your game, so you really don't need backups of it. But if it will make you feel better, you can always move all of those files to another folder somewhere other than your Sims 3 folder. But the best thing to do is just to delete all of those files in the DCbackup folder - except for ccmerged.package if you have Premium Content installed. In fact, it's probably a good idea to clean it out weekly or monthly....depending on how often you play.

Once I deleted all of those files, I was amazed at how much better my game played! It's like brand new again! I think that folder basically acts as a cache to hold all the items that are used in the game for easier access. The problem is, just like with web browsing, once you get too much junk in there, it just slows everything down.

Edited to add the following from mtglady:

You can also delete your compositorCache file and your simCompositorCache file. Just delete them both as they will regenerate when you start a new game. They can be found in your 'Your Name' > Documents > Electronic Arts > The Sims 3 folder. They are standalone files so if you sort the Sims 3 folder by name, they will appear toward the bottom.

And please do as Pam stated, restart your computer, close all unnecessary background files and try loading your game again. Hopefully this will cure your problem for awhile.

I delete these two files every evening when I am done playing and my DCBackup files monthly.

Note: For Windows Vista and Windows 7, look in Documents, not My Documents.

Automatically Clear Cache

Grimsoul has additional information that can help you to clear the cache every time you start The Sims 3:

I keep getting little bugs like the consignment shop not working, missing texture file on the drafting board and find that I have to delete the cache file regularly to to fix them. I've been doing it each time before I start the game and haven't had any problems this way.

So instead of trying to remember to do this each time I made a simple little batch file to take care of it for me and thought that others mid find it useful also.

Open notepad and copy and paste the following into it. You will have to change the directories path if they don't match where your files are. Like if you are using Late Night instead of Ambitions you will have to change that. If you are using Windows Vista or Windows 7, the path will be 'Documents' as opposed to 'My Documents'

Then go to File, Save as... and give it a name like Clean Sims.bat and under the drop down menu for Save as type: change it from Text Documents [*.txt] to All Files then save to the desktop or where ever you want.

When you click the batch file it will run and delete the four cache files then run the Sims.

@echo off
del "C:\Documents and Settings\My Computer\My Documents\Electronic Arts\The Sims 3\CASPartCache.package"
del "C:\Documents and Settings\My Computer\My Documents\Electronic Arts\The Sims 3\scriptCache.package"
del "C:\Documents and Settings\My Computer\My Documents\Electronic Arts\The Sims 3\compositorCache.package"
del "C:\Documents and Settings\My Computer\My Documents\Electronic Arts\The Sims 3\simCompositorCache.package"
start /d "C:\Program Files\Electronic Arts\The Sims 3 Ambitions\Game\Bin" Sims3Launcher.exe

Comments (91)

1 2 3 4 > Last
Ashley says...
I did what you said I deleted everything in the DCbackup file thing but there is still one thing in it that I cant delete, it is ccmerged file anyway no matter what I do it takes 2 hours for create a household to load even after 2 hours it does nothing.... I am starting to get really annoyed with this and am ready stop playing.. and I have one game that is ready to install but it says I have to update my game but when I try is says "cannot connect to origin" help me please!!!!!
When was the last time you updated Origin?  Do you pull up the program to see why it won't connect?  Have you restarted your computer?

You might get more help if you join the forum and post there.  We also have a lot of topics that could help you.
16th June 2013 6:35pm
Me says...
Also going into my documents - electronic arts - sims 3- featured items and deleting all the stuff in there helps. It's just pictures honest.
I don't know how but I had 1,950 in there and it made sims 3 SO MUCH FASTER! It was like a dream come true!
29th June 2013 2:05pm
Schout says...
Aww, Thx dude, you save my day man
12th July 2014 1:29am
Wolf says...
My game is soooo slow. It takes up to an hour to make one sim and in game it takes my town forever to load. I've done everything you and other people have suggested. The only games I have is the base game late night master loft ambitions pets and university. I do have cc but I deleted the mods and other stuff I don't need! Please help me! :(
1st June 2014 1:29pm
Lulz says...
lol only 5 more DLCs.
I bet with only the main game, you were hitting the minimum requirements to be able to play the game. And now you're adding 5 more DLCs, no wonder it takes forever to load stuff.
2nd June 2014 10:42pm
Heather says...
and it took me forever to find it all and days. and i did what this page did and I LOST it all. was so upset still am. Not trusting this sorry wont do it again.
That's why it's advised to NOT delete the DCCache. Which seems to be what you lost.  Nothing that is advised above should have made you lose anything that you lost.
19th July 2013 3:17pm
Heather says...
Can i delete the backup cache just not the ddcache
You can delete DCBackup files (all but ccmerged). NEVER delete the DCCache.
21st July 2013 9:59pm
Ashley says...
I would do this, but i dont have a dcbackup folder?! where is it?
25th March 2013 6:20pm
Raider says...
Thanks man!
MY game use to take about 20 minutes to load and 10 minutes to save and close down, now it does it in like 2!
Can't say enough how happy I am that I found this saved my computer from a lot of angry frustration induced glares for a while!
29th April 2014 11:12pm
Kimberly says...
Thanks so much for this fix! I had over 6,000 files in the folder; nearly 4 gigs! My hero :)
15th July 2013 1:38am
HMMW says...
I have finished all the steps but it doesn't work...Before I install expansion pack, I can enjoy the game without problem.But now I have to wait for a long time for the loading screen. I have to wait about 5 minutes to get into the game and play..:( any suggestions? Thanks....
14th June 2013 2:16pm
anna says...
I have a problem, because i dont have the Dbackup files anywhere in my sims :P
DCBackup should be under the Sims 3 folder. It becomes present the first time you play the game.
28th June 2013 7:26am
Nataruma says...
I was looking this up and found out from other sources that deleting files in the DCbackup folder would affect your ability to package and share builds, so that objects would be missing in the final packaged file. Is this true?
7th August 2013 12:40am
Lawlietismine says...
Holy *****! I am not very computer savvy on my own, but I follow instructions well. Anyway, I never mess around with files on my own because I fear messing it up beyond repair. I emptied out the DCBackup folder, and I have forgotten that my game had ever run this fast! I have never emptied that folder out before, so it had 211 items in it dating back 2 years ago. Wow. Thanks so much for the help. I would be so lost without this website.
21st July 2013 2:58pm
Drensik says...
In The Sims 3>Download file, I've got a few files with names like "dynamicchallenge_dcd1586feaea40b494b40fdf2d6eb03d" The description says it's custom content, each file is about 50kb...I've never downloaded any custom content, would these be safe to delete?
You can delete them if you want.  I think they have something to do with the game achievements but they should be fine to get rid of.
20th July 2013 11:33pm
AbbyHeartsSims3 says...
I have another tip for sims 3 players experiencing freezing, lag, and/or crashing! With the addition of the Sims 3 store, that takes up vaulable space in the game. If you go to Libraries/Docs/Electronic Arts/ FeaturedItems, you can delete all of the files in that folder! When i deleted them, there was 3248 files. They are PNG files, which stores store item photos. These are unneeded, just like DCBackup. The photos are stored in the game, so you don't need the backup copies. Hope i helped!
1st June 2013 8:54pm
Lawetta says...
I cleared out the DCBackup file, had 328 files in there and the other two, CompositorCache and SimscompositorCache has 102,046 KB & 511,531 KB. When I click on them my system asks me with what program do I want to open these files with and lists a bunch of programs...what do I do there? Do I pick a program? All help is appreciated! Thanks, Lawetta
It shouldn't want to open it if you just choose send ot recycle bin. I'm not sure why it wants to pick a program.
18th July 2013 8:00pm
Ayunda says...
I've deleted those files, but it still running so so so slow :( any other suggestion?
There are a few things you might be able to try if you look on our forum under technical help.
16th July 2013 6:35pm
Ali Cat says...
Thank you so much. I had about 4500 items in that folder. Here's hoping that it fixes my alarmingly slow game. I don't want to have to uninstall and then get all of my cc again. It takes SO long.
3rd June 2013 4:34pm
Mike456 says...
You can also disable the cache files completely by setting permissions on them to be inaccessible to you. Then the game will not be able to write to them at all. In my tests, this has solved the freezing problems entirely. The simCompositorCache in particular would grow to hundreds of megabytes in size, which certainly explained the totally unreasonable slowness of the game coupled with a very low GPU and CPU loads.
19th May 2013 11:57am
jade says...
I am experiencing serious freezimg issues during gameplay. Every few seconds it freezes for a few seconds. It's kind of maddening. I have deleted the files mentioned. I have uninstalled the game and all expansions and reinstalled using origin rather than the discs and still the problem persists. Any other suggestions?!
Is it in every save file or just one?   Did you try using "ResetSim *" on the whole town?
12th June 2013 6:30pm
TheDoctor says...
Hey guys, here is an update to the batch file that will also nix your Backups folder to get it all cleaned out in one swing every time you fire up the sims. Copy the following to notepad and save as Sims 3 Launch&Clear.bat

@echo off
rmdir /s /q "C:\Documents and Settings\My Computer\My Documents\Electronic Arts\The Sims 3\DCBackup"
del "C:\Documents and Settings\My Computer\My Documents\Electronic Arts\The Sims 3\CASPartCache.package"
del "C:\Documents and Settings\My Computer\My Documents\Electronic Arts\The Sims 3\scriptCache.package"
del "C:\Documents and Settings\My Computer\My Documents\Electronic Arts\The Sims 3\compositorCache.package"
del "C:\Documents and Settings\My Computer\My Documents\Electronic Arts\The Sims 3\simCompositorCache.package"
start /d "C:\Program Files\Electronic Arts\The Sims 3 Ambitions\Game\Bin" Sims3Launcher.exe
Commands look good to any who might be weary - thanks good Doctor for the contribution!
29th August 2013 2:48pm
Jill says...
I deleted all the files mentioned and restarted my computer and now my saved games won't load. They stop loading around 1/5 of the way down the bar. I'm running Windows 8 on a fairy new Asus laptop with higher-than-average specs.
13th September 2013 3:45pm
Jennifer says...
I was wondering about the Featured Items folder. I've heard that you can delete it safely from your game as it happens to slow your download time and the time from switching from playing your sims and going into build/buy mode. BUT, I have heard that it regenerates all the thumbnails back into the folder every time your start your game up. Is there a way we can permanently delete the folder for good?
22nd July 2014 11:44am
mado says...
man this is no a solution ever .. the problem is last patch of the game .. reinstall the game and never ever install any patch ..
22nd July 2014 2:51am
Adisya says...
I tried it and it worked! well.. for once after you did this and restart your computer then playing the sims. After that my sims started to lagging again:( I tried to delete the files in DCBackup but there's no file to delete except the ccmerged that musn't be deleted. So what should I do to get my sims to be smoothly normal again?:((
6th July 2014 2:14am
Liv says...
Hi! Thanks for putting time into this to help some Simmers, as it probably worked for some. It didn't work for me though. I did everything you said :(
24th June 2014 1:20am
Wolf says...
My game is soooo slow. It takes up to an hour to make one sim and in game it takes my town forever to load. I've done everything you and other people have suggested. The only games I have is the base game late night master loft ambitions pets and university. I do have cc but I deleted the mods and other stuff I don't need! Please help me! :(
1st June 2014 1:27pm
Evelyn S. says...
HELP! PLEASE! Whenever I go into my Sims 3 game, as soon as I click the check-mark-thing, the game just...goes really slow! I click, nothing happens. I tried clearing my cache by doing the steps, but nothing worked! HELP!! PLEASE!!!
8th June 2014 8:39pm
Kaci says...
Okay this didn't help me at all.. I deleted all those DCBackup files and the game still crashed. I've recently installed Nraas Master Controller Cheats and Overwatch. Could that be the issue? Every time I get to the loading household screen it says "Sims 3 has stopped working". I do meet the PC Requirements and my game is updated as well as the mods. I do delete cache files outside the mods folder (scriptCache, etc) . what is the problem?
24th May 2014 9:32pm
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