Generally favorable reviews - based on 36 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 24 out of 36
  2. Negative: 0 out of 36
Buy On
  1. AceGamez
    It not only makes for a perfect introduction to the genre for those curious few yet to sample a taste of Sim City, as well as providing some more meatier challenges for the experienced simmer. Combine this with the incredibly detailed, smooth and well-conceived graphics and the discrete sound and music, and you have a game that's pretty much a must have.
  2. If you are a fan of City Building Sims than this is a great title for you. Just be warned that the extra need to balance your different social groups will make this one harder to master than some of the other City Building Sims out there.
  3. It scores well in all areas, but the inclusion of StarForce will put a lot of people off. Note to Monte Cristo: Seriously, guys, don’t use StarForce on one of your products again. Ever.
  4. Much more than a clone of "SimCity", City Life is a deep, realistic urban planning simulation that is both challenging and entertaining.
  5. The fact of different groups and their interaction adds another dimension to an already neat idea. Budding Mayors will love it.
  6. PC Gamer
    It won't win any awards for innovation (or its horrofic yacht-rock soundtrack), but City Life is still a great, slightly offbeat take on an old-fashioned formula. [Sep 2006, p.58]
  7. 82
    If you've got the time and patience for City Life, then you'll surely uncover an engrossing gaming experience that, despite its minor faults (including a still-lacking tutorial, a confusing interface and some awful accompanying shopping centre 'muzak') that does more than enough to stand proud in the company of Tycoon and Sim City.
  8. I love the first person point of view. It does nothing for me as far as making better building choices, but being able to wander around street level and see what all my little people are doing is fun.
  9. City Life adds a new social element to the traditional sim game. It takes some clever planning to keep your city’s populace from destroying each other, but the implementation feels just a bit heavy-handed. The rest of the package is high caliber, except for some questionable taste in music.
  10. The relative simplicity, the choice of structured or freeform play, the ability to mingle with your populace... it's all very successful. If Monte Cristo could just turn the volume up a fraction on the interesting social conflict dimension, and add a few extra building models to make skylines a bit more varied.
  11. The interface is simple in its design and layered very logically.
  12. "SimCity" in its later incarnations became too laborious, so that cyber-builders even found themselves planning and maintaining water systems. City Life scores high by keeping things more straightforward.
  13. 80
    Dedicated Sim City players are probably saying, "Yes, of course I need that level of detail!", and that's why City Life isn't going to appeal to them too much. But plenty of folks will be glad of a little more abstraction and a little less overwhelming detail.
  14. 80
    City Life is the freshest take on the city-sim genre in memory, managing to be both as challengingly complex as its more gearheaded forebears and more accessible to casual or more philosophical players.
  15. 80
    A very decent game with a new twist in the city building genre that will force players to think not only about efficient design, but also the social structure within that metropolis. While that aspect could have been a bit more challenging, the game as a whole does a pretty good job setting up a reasonable caricature of city living.
  16. Computer Games Magazine
    City Life is all about creating a provocative and challenging social model, then giving you the tools to play with it and the 3D engine to admire it. [Sept. 2006, p.66]
  17. While it happens to have an deceptively inconspicuous title, the same cannot be said for the experience it provides.
  18. PC Gamer UK
    City Life provides a valuable municipal service by being far more accessible while still providing a decent challenge. [June 2006, p.95]
  19. Despite the familiarity of City Life’s gameplay, the social element is fresh enough to make it an easy recommendation, despite any political overtones it may carry. If you are a city building fan or just have time to kill until Sim City 5 is released, City Life is a good choice, thanks to its easygoing nature and appealing structure.
  20. There are a few things missing, and long-term gameplay in the scenario mode may be a little repetitious but City Life does a nice job of creating a city management sim that has its challenges, but is entertaining and enjoyable.
  21. City Life’s handling of social dynamics adds a fresh new layer to the enterprise of city building.
  22. City Life combines the fun of a city-building game with the challenge of a financial simulation, though it requires patience and perseverance to master.
  23. Games Master UK
    Juggling to accommodate the intellectuals with the riff-raff offers a pleasant twist on the genre, but this still doesn't quite have the sheen of Will Wright's series. [June 2006, p.80]
  24. It possesses the sort of open-ended gameplay structure that will nurture your addictive tendencies and have you tweaking and expanding your city way beyond the time you promised yourself you would stop.

Awards & Rankings

User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 29 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 18 out of 29
  2. Negative: 4 out of 29
  1. Sep 7, 2011
    cool game. makes fun and you can waste a lot of time palying it XD.
    having more traffic options would be great and a better fire control would
    cool game. makes fun and you can waste a lot of time palying it XD.
    having more traffic options would be great and a better fire control would avoid losing your whole city in flames.
    Full Review »
  2. Axwell
    Nov 27, 2006
    I couldnt be more dissapointed with this game, it held my attention for a mere half a hour, not worth buying AT ALL.
  3. RonnyG.
    Oct 13, 2006
    Great game. Very user friendly, took me only around 10 minutes to figure out without reading tutorial. I love every minute of it. This is Great game. Very user friendly, took me only around 10 minutes to figure out without reading tutorial. I love every minute of it. This is like Tetris in a way - addicting, "Just five more minutes, mom!" Full Review »