'Incredible' SimCity Grows Up

Most reviewers love the new version, which gives players way more control
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 5, 2013 1:05 PM CST
In this mage released by Electronic Arts/Maxis, concept art for a waterfront city is shown for the video game "SimCity."   (AP Photo/Electronic Arts/Maxis)

(Newser) – The SimCity franchise gets a major reboot today with a sixth version that gives players far more detailed control over the cities they create and the individual citizens who live in them. For the most part, reviewers are wowed:

  • Farhad Manjoo, Slate: The update is "incredible," he writes. It is "deeper and more realistic than any other sim game I’ve played." What happened in previous versions was largely determined by luck; now you get a trove of "real-time data" on all aspects of city life.
  • Chelsea Stark, Mashable: Be warned that the first thing you build in the new game is probably going to fail miserably—but you'll still love playing, writes Stark. "The city feels responsive and alive, and is good at telling you what it needs. Once you learn about the detailed metrics available to you in for each city, it's like a whole different game has opened up."

  • Dean Takahasi, Venture Beat: "It is wonderfully complex, but very easy to play," he writes. "The title is a massive undertaking and it has come together beautifully overall. Hopefully, EA will be able to improve the connected parts of the game, and the experience will become more fun with more players."
  • Kyle Orland and Peter Bright, Ars Technica: The two editors each played over the weekend for about 12 hours, and "were pretty disappointed with what we found." Both found the new game's space limits way too restricting, for one thing. "Maybe EA shouldn't have messed with its successful city building formula quite so much."
  • Server trouble? Adam Barnes at NowGamer says lots of players are having trouble connecting to the game's servers, which could bode poorly for an "always-on" Internet game.
(Read more SimCity stories.)

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