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Generally unfavorable reviews- based on 4341 Ratings

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  1. Mar 7, 2013
    I cannot fathom the reasons for the online-only gameplay forced upon players of this game. After playing for 4 hours; (server issues aside), my city has disappeared. All of it. The server ate it, despite having started a private region in which only I was playing. This is, and should be a single player game; as its predecessors have always been. The game itself is actually very good, once you are able to log in of course. It's a very enjoyable simulation that could live up to its expectations. The new grid-less approach to organizing your city is simply amazing, as are the new features that the game has to offer. The only significant irk I have despite the ridiculous online connectivity requirement is that they should have named it Simtown, as you cannot actually create a city; the size constraints are simply too strict. Why can't I choose to build cities 4 or even 16 times the size of the football field that is provided?

    In short: It's a very good game; that has been destroyed by online connectivity requirements. Admittedly, the situation regarding the overflowing servers should be rectified, but as it stands it is unplayable. A game costing as much as this shouldn't suffer from these kind of launch issues; not after the debacle that was Diablo 3's launch.
  2. Mar 7, 2013
    Well, here it is. Although, I'm not that upset that I cannot play the game at the moment (and likely for a few more days). What ticks me off the most is what has ticked me off since I found out about it: the transformation of this into this But I'll get to that. Graphically, the game is beautiful. While I prefer a more realistic look, the visuals of this SimCity are definitely a turn to a more simplistic and toy box-like world. The effects and movements of all the tiny pieces on the ground are ultimately satisfying and fun to look at.

    In terms of sound, apart from being a siren simulator, the game is not much of an improvement over SimCity 4, but that is fine.

    Now I hear a lot of people saying that this SimCity is much harder than the older ones. This, ladies and gentlemen, is a false flag. I've been able to make nearly 100k population cities in under an hour while maintaining over a 10k profit (that's including simoleons from specializations) to the point where I have nearly millions...and not really all that much to spend it on. In previous SimCity titles, your job never really felt complete. Now, you eventually build yourself up to the point where continuing is pointless and you are forced to move on to another small square. But this is where my biggest complaint lies.

    Ultimately, this SimCity is a simplified version of previous titles. There are no mass complicated regions and each square is its own independent city, although sims will commute to other cities to shop, work, etc. I also feel like I am having cooperation forced down my throat. I understand that they had a multiplayer vision for this game, but I think that vision is in no way true to that of SimCity. Not that SimCity cannot be multiplayer and even cooperative, but I think it should never have been dumbed down to the point of baby's first sim game while not even focusing on what made SimCity so captivating: that it was hard, expansive, and that it offered you huge options. Did you like thermoforming? Well, too bad, because that's gone...or did you like creating your own mass transit highways? Well...yeah, that's gone.

    Personally, I enjoyed being not a mayor of one square, but being a bunch of mayors and even God of the entire region. I could build entire regions by hand using terraforming tools and then start building small, huge, and everything in between cities.

    In terms of the always online feature, I have no qualms. I lived through the Diablo III launch and have come to expect this I suppose. But it is unfortunate that such a launch was, once again, handled so poorly. Not only that, but while Blizzard has probably the best forum service and PR I have seen, EA and Maxis have next to no PR and a poor forum system. Apart of what kept people on DIII is that Blizzard took a proactive stance in communicating to its buyers and still continues to work with players in order to deliver a better product, even after nearly almost a whole year. Ultimately, I believe SimCity has fallen victim to a type of mixing the complicated structure of SimCity with the simple and easy-to-access world of the Sims; to appearing hostile to long-time fans of SimCity; to over simplification; and to a poor launch, which it seems has solidified the opinions of many.

    Will Maxis and EA work together with fans to deliver the best SimCity they can, or will they fall short due to their poor PR or unwillingness to give fans what they want?
  3. Mar 8, 2013
    I haven't purchased the game (yet), but I've honestly gotten more entertainment from watching EA getting scorched than I have had in a long time. So I give the game a 5.
  4. Mar 9, 2013
    The Good: A lot of fun. Great strategy playability amongst the regions.
    The Bad: Small city sizes all gameplay online with your game(s) saved in the cloud...
  5. Mar 9, 2013
    When I eventually did get to play in single player mode after 2 days it looks great and has some interesting stuff but within 2 hours I had run out of space. I paid £60+ for this and when I've finished this review I'm going to boot up Cities XL
  6. Mar 18, 2013
    The servers generally seem to work when logging in but even now I still experience issues where the game will freeze and I'm told that the server needs to "roll back" my game to an earlier point in time. A few other points: You aren't technically forced to interact with others. You can set your region to private and then create multiple cities within the region, which seems to be the way to go. Iodiotic AI ensures that your city will apparently always have traffic problems and that tourists may or might not go to your tourist attractions. Problems with the AI seem to multiply when multiple large cities are in the same region. This game should still be in beta. Nevertheless it still looks great and is a lot of fun, when it works. I've played it a lott so I couldn't in good faith give it too low of a score. If it worked more smoothly it would deserve an 8. If plot sizes were bigger then it would be a 9. If you didn't always have to be online, in addition, it would be a 10. Expand
  7. Mar 16, 2013
    The GlassBox thing is obviously raw. AI is dumb. Etc, etc. But most of these things can be patched. Yet there is 1 serious issue that cannot be, most likely. It is the plot's size. At present it looks like a small town. And by the sounds of it the GB just cannot handle big and huge maps well. So, if one wants to build a City, Cities XL Platinum is a safer bet. In terms of complexity they are about equally easy (Cities just try to simulate the city in more depth, while SimCity tries to simulate the sims). But Citites looks like a City when you zoom out, while SC looks like a shiny town. Expand
  8. Mar 18, 2013
    I deeply respect and commend all efforts made in order to modernize the new SimCity and produce a superb graphics engine with innovative and realistic additions such as expansions to public service buildings, realistic traffic aesthetics, incredible detail, school bus stops, and so on.

    However, for us die-hard SimCity fans, this game falls very short of our expectations, namely for just
    a few yet devastatingly consequential reasons:

    No terraforming. Nearly half of the pleasure of the old SimCity was creating a landscape that was entirely a product of your own work and settling the human population where you wished and where the terrain best fitted such development. The satisfaction of "owning your work" and producing an entirely customized terrain that boasts and entirely customized network of human development is indescribable. The loss of this option in the new SimCity is thus also indescribable.

    Tiny city boundaries. In a game where I would be deeply involved in playing a region for months and sometimes years concocting sprawling metropolises, industrial suburbs, bedroom residential communities, satellite cities, extensive interconnected mass transportation networks... I have grown agonizingly frustrated with the fact that my cities are unrealistically constrained by tiny square borders. In fact, the city limits are built-out so quickly that I've already grown bored with the game only after a few days of playing it. No possibility for expansion or realistic regional connections equates to no more motivation for me to play the game.

    City boundaries do not touch each other. Similar to my last point, I cannot "continue" one city into an adjacent one to create a realistic and expansively developed metropolitan area. Instead I am restrained to making rather isolated communities connected by "exits" on a transportation network that is reminiscent of how post-World War II sprawling suburban communities are connected.

    Zoning is regulated by roads. If I want a higher-capacity road in a rural area and simply wish to have some light development along it, I'm out of luck. Mid- and high-rise buildings will unrealistically rise out of what was intended to be a sparsely populated landscape. In real life, zoning is not delegated by road capacity. In fact, there are numerous examples of high density developments on tiny roads. Restricted vehicular mobility in such areas are compensated by extensive mass transportation networks. The game is highly-geared to the road, which in my opinion, is a big step backwards. If I want to zone high density on a small street, please let me do it. My sims will either suffer the consequences or I will figure out a way to make it work through other transit options. In any case, give me the freedom to make that decision.

    Truth be told, the highly controversial move to entirely-online game play does not bother me one bit. In fact, it's great because I don't have to save extensively large files associated with SimCity on my computer anymore. If I wanted to, I could invite friends to make cities in a region with me and we could cooperatively build a metropolitan area together. That is such a great idea and deserves much applause. This does, in fact, push the game into the 21st century.

    Unfortunately, though, despite the wonderful aspects of the new SimCity, the four major downfalls mentioned above, in my opinion, have taken the game back into the 20th century. For "self-proclaimed" veterans and die-hard fans like myself, there are several major disappointments to the new SimCity that degrade the game to the level of undesirable. Having been playing SimCity since I was a small child, I've watched as the game has made leaps and bounds toward more creative, customizable, expansive, and realistic game play. But as I play the new SimCity, it pains me to say that I've been taken backwards. My hands literally feel like they're tied, in so many ways.

    I really do hope that the keys to these handcuffs associated with the new SimCity's game play are not thrown away forever. I strongly urge you to incorporate elements from the previous SimCity (as indicated above in the points above) into the new SimCity and perhaps come out with a serious of patches, updates, or whatever is needed to bring the real SimCity back to life. The innovate and highly appealing elements are there, but some of the most basic, realistic, and quite frankly expected, aspects of the game need to be reincorporated.
  9. Mar 20, 2013
    First off, I had no connection problems, it probably helped that i'm in New New Zealand. So as I began exploring the game and its features I thought to myself, wow, this is a well built game, the modding capabilities are going to be huge. But every now and then something would crop up and cause a confused face; the first one was the small plot of land, I shrugged it off and thought the mechanics must be different. The second confusion showed its face when I first hit the 100,000 mark, at that point I noticed the city I had built had become so squished with tall buildings that it no longer resembled a typical city, to make matters worse, I could not build all the structures I would have liked to, this led me to understand that the game does not want me to play alone, it wants me to either play other plots of land in the same region and specialize them to support each other, or wait for online players to join in. The frustration was starting to set in heavy at that point. 1. I do not like loading and reloading all these different cities that don't even look like cities just to support the one city you care about. 2. When I attempted to start a multiplayer game, no body joined. So with a final attempt at giving the game a chance, I looked for existing maps to join, but very few were active longer than 3 days and those that were, are full; so no hope there either.

    Maxis, if you read this, you have a valuable game sitting here, this is only going to be successful for you right now: release the modding tools, but if you won't do that, at least focus the game for single player, doubling the plot size would be a welcome start. If something does not happen within the next few weeks, I'm sorry to say goodbye to another could-have-been. Just take the plunge and listen to us gamers for once.
  10. Mar 20, 2013
    I won't go into much detail about the DRM stuff. It's EA's Origin. Like it or hate it.

    The game itself however, once you finally manage to log in, plays pretty fun for a couple of hours. The cities are rather small so you have to expand inside your region to create new cities that can provide each other with different services. This makes a huge part of the so called multiplayer
    experience, since you can either choose to build up several cities in one region all by yourself or let your friends build some in your region. A good idea actually but server instabilities, slow response times (e.g. it takes AGES to send someone inside your region a gift. Hell it even takes ages to do so while playing all on your own with different cities inside YOUR region).

    After a couple of mostly pretty entertaining hours however the game starts to behave "strange". A city with a HUGE load of residents and nearly no industry whatsoever suddently starts complaining about not enough workers?! At first you might start to compensate by building "support cities" that provide more workforce for your main city but this doesn't help at all. The reason is that the actual resident size is more or less a hoax. Doing the math (google it, I really don't want to go into detail here), a city of 100000 residents might just have 10000 real ones, logicaly not providing enough workers for the industry.

    The flaws of SimCity really make it hard to enjoy after a while and although it could be a very very good game, it isn't. Sadly.
  11. Mar 23, 2013
    I've played SimCity for countless hours, a few of those hours where in beta. Of course, within the allotted beta time there wasn't a great ability to build a very large city that would have traffic problems. The game seamed great in beta but now that the full game is out, my entire opinion of this game has changed. Below are some areas of the game that I have a problem with. 1. Traffic
    This is the biggest problem because it translates into many more problems, such as fires not being extinguished and criminals not being arrested. It also negatively effects tourist attractions and trade, garbage collection and other issues. Try plopping an airport and watch the masses of taxis pile up on your roads. Adding mass transit only seems to worsen the traffic problem and while the recent game update did help lighten traffic some, it wasn't enough to thoroughly enjoy the game more. Previous versions of SimCity offered one way streets, subway travel and the ability to connect cities with each other via highway and other methods. Can you think of many real cities that only has one road connecting it to the outside world? The game needs a complete do-over when it comes to transportation and regional connectivity. 2. City Size
    When it comes to the size of the city I would much rather be playing CityVille (a free Facebook game) which allows you to expand your city boundaries as you meet certain achievements. I spent $79 on my copy of SimCity (as did many of you) and I most certainly do not appreciate the relatively small city boundaries that are present in this game. Plop a municipal airport and expand a few wind or solar farms and then see how much space you have left.

    3. Others
    There are numerous bugs throughout the game and the only real way to bring it to Maxis's attention is to post in a forum, I'm not a big fan of forums, the game needs a built in form to submit bugs.
    The game doesn't have enough depth to it to keep me entertained for long, to be honest, if it weren't for the traffic problems I probably would have already got bored with it and quit anyways. For example, what is the most used utility besides electric and water (maybe even as much as those)? Cell phones! It looks like this neighborhood could use a cell tower! It looks like the city needs to contract with a cable provider. Simple additions like this would continue to make the game more entertaining.
    What happened to the ordinances? These little city laws that you could activate in SC4 made a world of difference on traffic, pollution, education, health and many other aspects of the game.
    Server issues appear to be a thing of the past and that's great but now it's time to focus on the overall game. I didn't want my review and thoughts of the game to be based on server issues so with those aside, I give the game a 5/10 rating. Since the game is fully a connected experience (which I'm perfectly okay with) I hope to see many improvements made but I think I'll wait awhile before I hop on the game again.
  12. Jun 29, 2013
    The game now, a few months after release, is good and quite enjoyable. The game alone i'd rate as good as any other simcity, about an 8 rating. The downside of the game now is that despite best efforts it didn't bring anything new to the table with the multiplayer aspect. That said... at release it was awful as the negative reviews show, and it really would make me think again before buying anything with DRM such as this or any EA/Maxis product again as they were caught lying and time after time refused to refund a completely unplayable (at the time) game. Expand
  13. Mar 27, 2013

    All regions are clogged, filter by region, and there is no possibility of finding an empty area, too, the whole line launched in the toilet if you do not have any friends with this game you'll play alone in the region. Google Translate
  14. Apr 7, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Sim City is a great game where you learn a lot of cities, the acting is good management, but has many problems on maps and graphs that present technical difficulties in large scale. Expand
  15. May 16, 2013
    Look, I'm not saying it's a bad game, but it's a bad game. SimCity had potential to be a great game, but Maxis and EA flubbed up with the DRM and the many under the hood mechanics.
  16. May 18, 2013
    The game is good at gameplay, but he can be better. The idea was a good one, but when you buy the game at DVD, EA says: Unlimited posibilites. The game is an remaster of SimCity 4 Societies, but he has some bugs. EA must solve them with a patch. That game it was so close to be a succes but the multiplayer- why we use that? I can't play that.... cause tht cursed server are full or busy. It can take hours. Once you are in your world you will see a very small place to create your world (SimCity 4 is 10 times bigger). And in 2 hours (max) I haven't anything fun to do in my world.
    P.S EA wake up and don't fail like that with Sims 4.
  17. Oct 29, 2013
    I have begun to really hate EA and Origin recently, too many bad decisions have resulted in SimCity being unplayable most of the time, due to servers being full or not having a good enough internet connection. The Game is good, you just can't get on there 50% of the time. EA It's in the game (of you can actually get on it in the first place).
  18. Jun 2, 2013
    Sim City is a nice game, however, it's had a rough start. The maps are too small and sometimes it's just not enjoyable to play.
    Servers are unstable sometimes, game crashes.
  19. Jul 30, 2013
    I honestly have to say that Simcity 5 disappointed me very much. All of us where waiting for the return of the Simcity saga with a stunning performance of Maxis, but instead of having a master game and they gave us just a simplified version of the previous game Simcity 4, but we must say that the graphical advances of this game are a huge advance.

    Talking about the negatives points,, as
    I said at the beginning: this is a simplified version ,I mean that the lots o transports that were in SC4 like highways (that are already there by the game), monorail, subway, train, etc. were all removed. Another thing that has get the most of the critics is the fact that you must be online to play a single player game, that's something incredible, in this game is well know by the users that if the server reached its maximum capacity you can play and you will have to wait until you are allowed to play and the server has a little space four you game, another thing that captured our attention us that the space for the city is too small, you can't rise a metropolis in that tiny space. And finishing the negative points, we see that the buildings for every tools or service is limited to 3 or 4 compared to SC4 where in police you could have like 5 or 6 buildings, but that's obvious, isn't it? a few things for a little space.

    In the other hand, this game has some positive things. Starting from the 3d camera that allows you to see every corner of the city and the extraordinary graphics that it has. For me there are two important things that wasn´t in the previous games of the franchise:
    1) The multiplayer mode: it allows you to play with other people in the world if you have an Internet or LAN connection, it's based in a region where the players have a city and they interact with the other ones for better or worse, and every city has a role.
    2) The city role: in CS4, the cities interact with each other but It wasn´t like now, in Simcity 5 the cities perform a specific role, for example: you have a tourist city, an industrial city, a casino city, a city based on minery and other kinds.
    Others things like, the add-ons in the buildings is another advance and the realistic geographic conditions, like the places were is water under the ground, the way the wind blows or the mineral that are in the ground.

    In conclusion. I can say that the users expected more of this game, and for now we will go on using Simcity 4, almost we must admit that correcting this negatives things and we combine this with SC4 I can ensure you that this will be the best urban simulator ever, but by now we will have to wait until EA and Maxis decide to take this franchise more seriously and take it back to the place it must be.
  20. Feb 21, 2014
    I rate this game a 5. As it is a SimCity game and it featured most of the things you would of expected from a SimCity game. It even had some nice features like you could play online with others. It had a nice feature where you could play multiple cities in a region at the same time. Specializing each city. Therefore one could be the commercial area. Another the residential. Another the industrial. So in theory and what you got when you bought it, it was probably a 10.

    However what destroyed the game was EA's greed. They forced you to join Origin. They forced you to play the game online. But then they didn't have the capacity on the Origin servers to handle the masses of SimCity fans who were trying to build their cities. Remember everyone was forced to play online. This caused lag. Which in a city sim, that was happening in live time causes massive problems. From the cars, to crime, to pollution. This could cause whole sections of your city to just fall apart with no apparent way to fix it. It also caused the game to behave illogically and not be able to handle multiple specialized cities very well. For instance when I built a commercial area that was near a residential city, that was also sending electricity, water and other resources to build up the commercial city. The game was sure there weren't enough people to support it. Even though the residential city needed tons and tons of jobs and places to shop. Same with the industrial. You could start up a regular city and then rebuild it. But it's illogical multiplayer flaws coupled with lag could just ruin your gaming experience. This was especially a problem for those serious builders. As EA was trying to promote building competitions. The lag made things ugly really fast.

    When you couple this lag with bugs, bad pathing, and illogical flaws in the new ai the game was all but doomed. It's sad really as most of these flaws would of eventually been patched and everyone who purchased this game would of been happy rating it 8 or better easily. And most of the flaws were probably caused by the lag of the server you were forced to play on.

    I played solo, or private games where I invited friends. I have highs speed internet, but being forced to play on the Origin server which was lagged out of it's mind, just ruined the game for everyone. It is so sad because if we could of played this game solo, or on our own servers this game would probably have been a classic. Which all of us would be replaying for years to come.

    But instead EA decided they would stop game hackers by forcing them to play on their servers. Sadly those who cracked the games are probably the only ones who can enjoy the game in the state I last saw it. And this policy for what was traditionally an offline game, ruined it. Without stopping the hackers. In fact it was a PR problem for EA as they said you couldn't play the game offline. But people were quickly finding evidence that the game could probably be patched to be able to play offline.

    If EA just put out a patch that allowed us to play the game on our own computers or our own servers this game would be saved. Which would save the game for those who want to use the game on Origin, because Origin wouldn't have it's servers lagged. And it might help restore EA's reputation.

    Sadly EA already stole the money from all who bought this game. And sadly it seems EA is not concerned with keeping SimCity as customers.

    In the end the game launched so badly that EA had Origin give players a free game. Which is okay, if you actually enjoy having to log into someone else's server just to play a game. But it's quite annoying when it destroys a classic franchise. And a game that should be able to be enjoyed offline.
  21. Mar 7, 2013
    One thing that I don't get by this publisher is how low they treat us customers that bought the game with our hard earn money, and slapped our face with middle finger by introducing always online DRM, micro transition ramshackle servers, etc. and those who pirate the game are likely to be having the most fun. I give you red.
  22. Mar 17, 2013
    SimCity is finally *playable.* I'm not going to bother with the always-on DRM pros/cons/WTF EAs except to say I don't feel like it helps the game at all. (Most of you probably have your own opinions on this, and I'll bet 99% of you agree with me) So, the game itself... it is a more simplified game than SimCitys past. And when I say simplified, I mean really simplified in almost every way. For a newbie to simulation strategy games, then SimCity may be a decent start for you. The mechanics of the game are easy to learn. The sizes of your cities are tiny. Tiny to the point where if you know what you are doing, you will fill that entire space to maximum capacity within about 6 hours of game time. You can potentially have a city half covered in skyscrapers in that amount of time. That's with Llama speed too (the 2nd fastest game pace, and the fastest available as of writing). So, from there, you either keep growing in... or you make a new city. What does making a new city do? Well, it freezes your other city for starters (your city only progresses when YOU are inside of it), and you basically start a brand new city from complete scratch. Cities in the same region are connected in a sense, regions can share almost any asset possible, ranging from workers, to resources, to wealth. What happens in one city can also make impacts on the rest. Cities in the same region are very intertwined with each other. For example, I have a city in the same region as a friend. My friend is specializing in industry, however, I'm specializing in tourism. Sadly, I'm downwind of him, so all that air pollution he produces is making its way into my region, causing widespread illness. Luckily, hes willing to get those factories upgraded, but there is nothing I can do to force him. Are you seeing the pros and cons of this? On the topic of specializations, while we are mentioning it, they are helpful, but they don't feel significant. What I mean by that is, you could go ahead ignoring all city specializations and be fine. Maxis seemed to emphasize these, but they feel like an afterthought to me unless I am specifically looking for a coal mine or something. So, if you are a long time SimCity fan, this game is going to be a mixed bag. I'm sure many of you will enjoy some of the enhancements, but I'm also certain that that same many of you will loathe a lot more of them. My final score is 4/10. SimCity is a game that has a lot going for it, but the complexity has been diminished severely and relying on the SimCity servers is a pain (I guarantee the servers WILL be the thing you will hate most about SimCity). Otherwise, the game itself plays well when the servers are working. Expand
  23. Mar 31, 2014
    I'll make it quick and simple.

    It's a good game ruined by game-breaking bugs. EA has shown little interest in fixing these bugs. As a result you will end up needing to restart your city/region or accepting sacrifices due to bugs.

    Be aware.
  24. Mar 8, 2013
    Ok, I understand having to have an internet connection to play the game. But if the servers are junk or full and you can't even play the damn game that's just stupid! EA dropped the ball on this one! I don't care who but since I can't even enjoy a single player game. Because the servers are unavailable or down or full. This game is going back and I'll save some money and get Cities XL. I don't care who eats the cash but its not going to be me! Expand
  25. Mar 6, 2013
    Server reached maximum capacity and so I was placed in a queue and was not allowed to play a single player game because it forces me to constantly be online.
  26. Mar 12, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I pre-ordered and deliberately waited a week before reviewing to give EA a chance to bounce back from their self-inflicted launch debaucle. After that, my rating is still "meh". Though I give credit to their server team for standing up so many servers so quickly and a furrow of my brow to whatever management bean-counter prevented them from doing so prior to the launch. As of writing, Origin says I have 121 hours played, but some of that is just watching my my city burn and playing until 5 am (as that's when you can actually get on the servers)

    Some of the positives: When they said they'd be tracking every sim, I feared this would turn out more like the Sims, which was only fun when you mercilessly took away the only pool ladders. However, being able to click on any car travelling on the map and see where it's going, whether it has spending money, and follow it is actually pretty neat.

    Region play. It was in Sim City 4 to some extent, but it's cool to have all the cities work together to build great works. And with it, Multiplayer is a great idea. Sometimes I like a little teamwork, or to flood my neighbouring city with murderers and arsonists.

    Finite resources. Go ahead put all your eggs into the oil mining business and plop some high tax entitlements like education and fire safety for a better society. What's the worst that could happen? Tip: Diversify and plan for renewable income before the well runs dry

    Some of the negatives:

    DRM always on requirement. When I'm not sabotaging my neighbors, sometimes I like to play with myself and I want to build my Dystopian region without the condescending glares of my neighbors. But even as I write this a week after launch, I cannot log into Sim City to do so. One tip, if you get logged in, stay logged in. While you're playing you'll see "server disconnected" messages happen all the time, but then they'll reconnect and presumably everything will be peachy. If you disconnect, however, it's much harder to get connected and a region loaded.

    Difficulty. It's not. Pretty much any city (except one I'm playing now which it about 50% water) can be turned into a cash cow pretty easily. If your planning right, the only thing that throws you a curve is the occasional disaster. I like the idea of the global market, but as near as I can tell, there are hard lines at the minimum prices for buying and selling that pretty much guarantee you can make a ton of profit buying (then refining, smelting, producing) and reselling. I guess it'd be nice if there were bad investments. The only way to screw that up is misjudging your input or output rate, or bottlenecking your supply line.

    City Size. You run out of room fast. Because it's so easy to make money, you end up bulging at the borders in no time and your city become.

    Region play. The idea of region play is great. The implementation of region play is still a little off. Nothing is more frustrating than overloading a city with sweet nuke plants and the other cities in the region not recognizing that there is power available to buy. Or when collaborating on a great work, some cities will recognize that all of a specific resource (metal, allow, oil) has been provided, while others do not or only see that half has been provided.

    Multiple servers. Spreading out the load was a great idea to increase server availability. The downside is that the regions aren't shared between servers. So, if you've spent countless hours building a perfect replica of Trenton, New Jersey and that server is unavailable, EA supports answer is try a different server (where your region does not exist and you get to start all over). The result of this is a bunch of cities in the public regions that don't look like people are playing them. So it ends up as a Multiplayer environment where you're the only one on.

    Summary: After 10 years, they fell on their face at the starting line, but were able to get an Ok game out. They've hinted at some changes (bigger cities is the last one I heard), but I suspect a lot of these enhancements will cost you real-world Simoleans.
  27. Mar 6, 2013
    The maps are unbelievably small and that scale takes away from any real experience in creativity you could have. I've created about 5 "cities" in the same region, and have had others join my region and fill about 3. I've basically seen every feature in about 6-8 hours. If you don't zone a formulaic grid of high density streets around a central avenue, you won't get anywhere near 100k population. The size of the cities is an absolute joke considering many aspects that provided depth in sc4 have been removed. Yes, I can zoom in and watch my sims, but what part of watching them is considered "gameplay". I guess it's no big deal that I've explored the same space 5 times and plopped almost every item in the first day of playtime. Avoid buying this, it's nowhere near the quality of game you'd expect. It needs a serious patch right now to address the scale. A "major sports arena" or other large park or landmark will take up so much space(a few "blocks"), that you won't want to place many at all, because it will knock out about 5-10%(not exaggerating, maps are that small) of your housing! Expand
  28. Mar 6, 2013
    Ah sim city, we meet again. I have lost so many days/weeks/months of my life to your series. From the original all the way to now. I find that I have a childish giddyness inside me as I login to the game. It seems that the serves are full, well I guess I can wait, if I could give Diablo 3 the patience that its launch needed, then I most certainly can give sim city as much patience. I just hope it's not as much of a let down. Front of the queue at last, I whiled away the wait time with my plans for the grand city of "Our Land", and so begin my first steps back in the land of sim city. While playing I must say that I did enjoy the game. It was beautiful and deep (obligatory that's what she said comment!) My city was beginning to take shape, no longer a village but a town! Then I got dropped:-( You see, I live in an area where I can only get a pretty poor internet connection. 3MB, and it isn't the most reliable either. There are the random drop offs and what not. Now, none of this is EA's fault, however when I reconnected I was back in the queue.... again..... and so I waited..... and unfortunately due to a phonecall I missed my window to get back into the game so I was placed into the queue again.

    Now I admit, I should have been prepared for the always on, but due to my current experience's with their queue and their DRM I have found myself unable to play the single player game I wanted to play. This has left a bitter taste in my mouth and has seriously got me contemplating a pirated copy: I don't pirate "arrrrrr" as I have a job, so I purchase all my games. But this experience made me feel that pirating could be the way to go. Which is a shame, as there is a shining jewel of a game beneath this stool water that is the always on DRM.
  29. Mar 7, 2013
    Not really much good to say about a game that doesn't even work 75% of the time.
    I loved the previous instalments of the series so had high hopes for this one, but sadly no cigar. Why the hell did they make this traditional single player game with a on-line requirement, that is not only a authentication server connection but an actual game server connection where the server capacity is
    clearly not enough to feed the demand, my first ever attempt to play was on the 7th EU launch day, and first try entry got in and the game told me i had timed out and told me to log back in. 2nd try the same server was suddenly full with a 19min queue, even though it shows green and not full in the list.

    3rd attempt to play resulted in yet another time out due to the 15minute queue hurray!
    When I finally got to play the game it crashed in 20 min or so and back to the god damn queue.

    So my first thought on this new Sim City is a big WTF?!? where you smoking Maxis?

    Shame that so many critics based there review solely on the EA press version they got to play without the thousands of real players crammed on to the few servers. Would love to see the reviews if 90% of them would spend 30min or more in a queue to play for the review, and then have the game crash on them in 20min 3 hours repeatedly.

    I can already hear the lawyers over the pond getting ready to process the class-action lawsuit that this embarrassing excuse of a game will likely produce in true Americana style. Maybe we EU citizen should also put our class-action lawsuit powers in to good use here
  30. Mar 8, 2013
    This review is based on the current state of the game (minus connection issues). This game has online only DRM which was justified by making a single player game multiplayer by having regions share resources. However, this feature currently doesn't work and EA has admitted as much. You cannot share workers, resources, or money. City Hall upgrades do not sync with the region and carry over into other towns. As usual for an EA game it is infested with all kinds of other bugs. IE water is supposed to refill when it rains: Not working. Emergency vehicles will sit in long traffic lines even when there's an open road near by. You will also see fire fighters drive around in circles on the roads rather than go to fires. Fire Marshalls Wellness vans will randomly target buildings rather than prioritize high fire/gem prone areas. Not worth buying for a few months until they 1) Fix connection issues and add servers. 2) Patch all the broken features and revamp traffic AI. Expand
  31. Jun 23, 2013
    In this version of SimCity you compete and cooperate alongside other mayors within a larger region containing several areas. Citizens, resources and economies all interact with eachother across the borders, and the decision of one city influences the development of another in quite an intriguing manner.

    This really could have been a great game if it hadn't been for the fact that it's
    not. Not right now at least but with a couple of patches and an expansion or five it could be. At present there are so many issues that despite the new and interesting features and it's obvious potential overall gameplay suffers vastly. The 5000 characters permitted won't be sufficient for me to list the game's every shortcoming, so I'll just focus on the most essantial ones.

    First off, the area you're given is so small you can hardly fit a small town in it far less a metropolis. Nothing more to say about that really... if you like it cramped you'll marry this game and carry it's children no doubt. And these cramped buildspaces are particularly annoying seeing as how certain disasters (who seems to occur quite frequent) leave large portions of land uninhabitable for long (near infinite) periods of time.

    And to add to this misery of small build-areas, you can't even interact properly with the tiny patch of land you're given. Even the simplest of landscaping functions such as leveling/flattening the terrain in order to make more room for buildings has been removed and seeing as how the placement of buildings is dependent on the terrain the tiniest elevation can ruin any hope you have of properly planning the outlay of your city.

    How can you construct a city, if you're unable to interact with the terrain? Have you ever seen someone build a house without first adapting the ground? There are bulldozers in the game but appearantly these only work on removing buildings and rubbles of buildings.

    Even The Sims has terrain tools even in that game where you're only constructing houses they understand the value of this yet in SimCity where you're supposed to manage an entire city they've chosen to remove this option entirely.

    And speaking of stupid...

    The regions you choose are all preset. You are unable to create new ones like you could in SimCity 4, and the ones you're stuck with gets dull real fast. Especially seeing as how you can't even influence which areas of the region are made available nor the landscape within in these areas.

    Why anyone would take away the ability for users to customize or create own regions is beyond me. Adding such features can keep a game fresh for years without any effort made on behalf of the developers at all and well-designed user-content is a potential source of income too.

    As of now you can't even kick an inactive player from your regions your influence on setting up your own game is actually *that* limited. So if the person controlling your neighboring city decides he doesn't want to play anymore, you're stuck with his deteriorating community forever. And seeing as how one city's development influences the next, this can effect your area quite profoundly.

    So... To conclude...

    All in all I enjoy this game. At first I didn't. I got hung up on it's issues and comparing it to SimCity 4 which I hold very dear and this blinded me of it's uniqueness and it's potential. But after having played it a couple of days it's actually grown on me. It delivers many new twists and concepts that can be challenging and rewarding in their own ways but this fascination won't last unless they add more interactivity to the concept and solve some of the major and deeply annoying gameplay and design issues.

    Because this game *does* have plenty of issues the ones mentioned here are far from all of them and if it is to reach it's full potential they have to be addressed. Otherwise it will end up in mediocrity, be one of many games you buy, play for a while and then uninstall for a long period of time before you one dull day decide to reinstall it again hoping it's not as limited as you remember it to be only to find yourself disappointed once more.

    I won't recommend anyone buying this game at present, if I could do it over I'd most likely wait a couple of months when it's clearer in which direction it's headed but it's not so horrible I would warn against it either.

    I've already had my money's worth of fun and it's only been a couple of days since I got it, and despite all the issues and the fact that it lacks much of what I enjoyed from previous games it also has a lot to build on.

    Let's just hope whoever decided to leave out landscaping tools is long gone when they do, and that the sensibility of the rest is larger than the maps they've provided us with so far. Otherwise, this game is doomed.
  32. Mar 8, 2013
    Paid for the game, but the very stupid system didn`t let me get english version because I live in Azerbaijan. What a joke. At least they gave me a refund.
  33. Mar 10, 2013
    This game was fun at first but the limited city size and laughable multiplayer take the fun away about two days after you start playing. At first I loved it but then after playing about 12 cities it got old really fast. The multiplayer is stupid sure if you're connected to another city via a highway its fun you can send police, fire, trucks, amberlamps and sell or buy services from another city that is connected with a highway. The problem is only about 4 of the 16 cities are connected via highway in a region so whats the point. Sure those cities are connected but what about all the others they don't benefit from anything you do in the other cities. It even says your departments connected to your City hall are supposedly region wide but they aren't so if you start a city that's not connected with a highway you are basically starting from scratch on a tiny patch of land that's often full of hills and valleys and water that you can even build on and there is no terraforming only what your road does to the land when you lay it down except it just terraforms around the road still leaving the land around it completely incapable of supporting structures.Notice how i said nothing of the DRM or Server issues that also plague this game. If you do buy this game make sure you buy it at a place that will take your return cause its not worth staying. Expand
  34. Mar 8, 2013
    Welcome to: Simcity Children addition My specs: E6600 Processor, GFX: 660TI, 12 gigs ram, highspeed internet Price: 59$, Very steep considering what you get, more on this later (3 on 10) Installation: I picked up the digital version, it took about 15 minutes to download and about 40 minutes for the first patch. I would have MUCH preffered it on STEAM though, Original is very finicky (6 on 10)

    Booting up: The game took a while to start, and after several attempts I was finally able to join a server.
    (1 on 10)

    Adding friends: At the time of this writing this feature does not properly work, many many errors and adding a friend is very painful to do. You can forget about playing with a friend at this point. we tried for about 2 hours, many reboots and even more errors. We gave up and decided to play "solo" until they fix it
    (1 on 10)

    Creating your game: My first issue was getting to the game world, there were constant errors and I had to do multiple restarts just to get to the region view of my game world. (1 on 10)

    Map: Maps are VERY small, you cant modify the terrain in any meaningful way. (4 on 10)

    Graphics: They work, they arent mind blowing but arent ugly either. (8 on 10)

    Gameplay: Difficulty: VERY EASY on my first play through of about 2 hours (after skipping the tutorial) I was able to get 7,000$ per hour with no real effort or specialization. A nice little town with schools, fire halls, police stations, everything my citizens needed, taxes 10%. So I sat there thinking "Well now what??" (3 on 10)

    Layout: The UI is very intuitive, everything is well layed out, the layers sub section needs work as there's many icons and it's difficult to see which is which. (7 on 10) Building: I really like the new road system, very intuitive and works great, I like the way zoning snaps to the road and builds appropriately however I would also like a more advanced zoning option, one where you can customize exactly what size of zone you want, I like how government buildings are all modable however there is not NEARLY enough base building options for the 59$ price point. I know they plan on adding a whole bunch of DLC in the way of buildings and maps but for this price you get just the very basic buildings. Sad to see because its very obviously a money grab. (5 on 10)

    Always online: I HATE this feature, I personally don't have an issue with it but my dad would love to play and he simply can't because he lives in the boons and has no reliable internet access. Please include an offline mode! (1 on 10)

    Conclusion: Positives: The game looks decent, the overlays are nice, dynamic roads, sim immersion, traffic simulation, modable buildings.

    Negatives: Difficulty is very easy, Very few base building options, always online, impossible multiplayer with friends, small maps, gameplay is too simple (no power lines or pipes at all), no complex tax system, all graphs are gone.

    If I was to rename this game I would call it: SimCity Children Addition

    My Rating: 3.6
  35. Mar 13, 2013
    I'm not here to rage about DRM. Yeah it sucks, but what can you do? At this point, the servers are a little unreliable but I have played 106 hours and haven't had any major issues in about 3 days now. Most of these reviews bash the DRM and always online blah blah blah, but it's not just that. The AI is beyond horrible. You start getting up to 80k population (which is tiny) and things go from bad to worse quickly. Sims stack up and fill the streets needlessly, buses from other regions all flood into the city back to back at the same time, your freight trucks (the backbone of profit) get stuck in this traffic and your city begins to burn to the ground. The traffic and AI is not just challenging, as I first thought it was, it's just broken. It completely ruins your sense of success in building a thriving city. Sure, you can get around it with exploits and bugs like only zoning residential with some parks, or dirt access roads for trade express lanes, but it just sucks that you can't just build a big badass city and have things work right the way they should. The game is fun for a while, or if you aren't really hardcore about it, but I can't recommend it to any of my friends that have previously played the franchise. It's bad news, pick it up in the bargain bin in 6 months. Maybe they will have fixed a couple things by then. Expand
  36. Mar 6, 2013
    when you buy a game you probably expect to be able to play it. EA's servers are constantly down so playing this game when you want to is not something you can expect. You'll be playing when EA wants you to and a few years down the road when they stop paying for servers, you won't be able to play at all. This happens to MMOs when they cease to be profitable. This should never happen to a single-player game like SimCity. Expand
  37. Mar 5, 2013
    Here we go again. Another game that is simply worse than its predecessor.
    1) You must always have an active internet connection
    2) You must use EA's origin service
    3) Terraforming is officially out
    4) Maximum sized maps are only the size of a SimCity 4 medium map, and to put the icen on the cake, you can no longer build outside your city area (the region is off limits!), so in other
    words you are limited to building a small city/town (no more sprawling metropolises like Sim City 4).
    5) You cannot control regional mass transit anymore, and are restricted by pre-defined road connections.
    6) Modding is out, at least for the time being. Personally I don't see how Maxis can include mod support in an MMO game anyway, because mods would upset the game balance, and game balance is usually essential in an MMO game DLC's would make an attractive profit earning alternative to communty mods
    7) If you get some troll set up a city next to your city, and he decides to create lots of pollution or crime, your city will ofcourse pay the consequences
    8) The game is very expensive, and i'm sure there will be many more DLCs to come to "fix" the game, and ofcourse earn EA an extra bit of profit from us consumers.
    9) Your saved game will be located on an EA server. If EA decide to shut down the servers due to lack of profit, say goodbye to your cities! EA have a history of doing this with other games, and Maxis have blatantly ignored all questions regarding this matter.
    10) No direct control of zoning, this is now controlled by the type of road used
    11) No more farms or agricultural zones

    Simply put, don't bother with this game, pick SimCity 4 up instead, you'll be better of that way.
  38. Mar 7, 2013
    I dont like but i could even overlook all the issues with DRM, even accept that the game could be "constantly" paid by microtransactions, and the lack of real single, offline playing. But for me, what really kills this game from the beginning is the lack of a real map size. The current city plot size is just a joke. And its not only about simulation restrictions; EA/Maxis choose the poorest idea to keep performance at bay, by limiting physical size. Even if i wish to build a city with a lot of aesthetics, like avenues, curved roads, bridges, and so, i could not, because the space is so small. I cant even have farmland. That certainly wouldn't press performance, a lot of space with farms, but thay choose the size way, and i fear the reason was purely to charge for bigger plots. They could perfectly managed the "performance issues" with sims limit on city, blocking immigration, or even restrict the city to a certain number of buildings, but they choose to limit the size of the map, what is really dull. Plus, there is zero terraform options, so the game is essentially a simulator, constricted by what EA wishes, and we basically administrate some kind of pet cities that are limited by a magical barrier. Tunnels? Bridges? Anyone? No, basically the maps are just simple squares. Hell, if at least i could have some realistic tiny plots of land, shaped by some "natural limits" it wouldn't feel so empty. I have other minor complaints, like low graphic quality, and over cartunesque style, but i could even cope with that. But the city limitation is a real deal breaker for me.

    If you see people with reviews at 10 or 9, telling you "its fun and this is all that matters" are the same people that probably will find Farmville or any facebook game "fun and addictive". It will hit high for casual gamers. Anyone who really played some serious sim like previous sims will not have the same kind of opinion.
  39. Mar 5, 2013
    Between city size, no save/load functions, necessity to be always-online, I'm not sure I would buy this game at full price as it exists right now. The gameplay is enjoyable and the visuals are nice, but it feels incredibly limiting. This game has a lot of promise but sadly the product as delivered just feels clumsy. Hopefully EA takes criticism to heart and actually attempts to learn from missteps instead of just handwaving all concerns. Expand
  40. Mar 31, 2013
    Origin and EA's DRM scheme is horrible. That aside, the game itself doesn't deliver on its promise. Total city size is *very* small. Traffic is badly bugged (police patrols, buses, and garbage trucks all move in a giant cluster rather than dispersed throughout your city). Simulation depth just isn't there after you build a high school, elementary schools no longer needed; after you build a university no other type of school required, period. Transportation options limited: no highway over/under-passes and no subways. And because it's multi-player mayors in neighboring towns can grief the entire region by building a high-crime, high-pollution town and there is nothing you can do about it. Watch as your budget dives into the red because you are forced to build tons of police services to manage the criminals coming in from the other town. If you want to build huge cities go with CitiesXL or SimCity 4. If you like depth of simulation go with Tropico 4. This product just doesn't deliver on either level, imho. Expand
  41. Mar 6, 2013
    I had to sign up to reply to some of these positive reviews. Someone said they recommend buying a $60 game first and than to get the 10 year old game. Why not start with the better 10 year old game since you can play it when where you want. Sim City 4 you can save your own game you can build an actual city. Sim City 4 is not a little square confined by white dotted lines. Sim City (5) has fun gameplay until you fill up the map in a couple hours. This by far is the most jarring thing to me. 10 years later and the maps get smaller and confined by dotted lines. I hope they fix this without charging more money for DLC that should be standard in a AAA release. DLC is fine if its not removed from the original game to sell later Expand
  42. Mar 6, 2013
    Sim City is beautiful and the interface is perfect (really good job on it guys). But what happened to the real Sim City This game is really frustrating for 2 major points and 1 other reason:
    - The size of map is ridiculous (we can fill a map in 2 hours max). No possibilities of creation for a gigantic city.
    - The game is easy. Even if I add a lot of taxes to my population, it's still
    easy to keep your city safe.

    The last point concerns your DRM it's fully on-line and this is annoying. If Origin doesn't work, you can't play. Why did you do the same mistake as Diablo 3 ?

    My fear concerns the future: if Maxims adds a lot of paid DRM for special building bigger maps, that would be the glory of shame. I hope I am wrong but for now, as a Sim City fan, I am disappointed.
  43. Mar 6, 2013
    This game is plagued with problems. First, the obvious: The server overload proves correct all the folks who have been screaming about the always needing to be connected to the servers. I wasn't worried about DRM and no local saves originally, assuming people were just being anti-EA alarmists and that the game would work fine for me, but I was wrong. While it's broken, I can't even play a single player game which is all I want to do in Simcity anyway. That's stupid. I've also had the game crash a dozen times and lost progress. Also, EA is simply telling folks to use a different server if one is busy. A)They're all busy. B)The city you've put hours into doesn't transfer from one server to another, so you have to start all over if you use a different server. I also thought people were overstating how tiny the maps are, but again I was wrong. The map size is severely limiting. I've managed to make large cities, but they all just feel cramped and generic as you have to use every inch of space to get an even decent population. Do you really need skyscrapers to reach 60K citizens? What if I want to build my real-life home city? I can't. Also, I understand the idea of specialization and not needing to build a large amount of industrial or residential in every city, but I find myself constantly having to bulldoze hospitals and police stations (which I had to pay money for) just to make room to put new roads that allow greater density. (also, why can't I simply pave over a dirt road with a high density road? They're the same size). Lack of subways, lack of farms, lack of map size, lack of customization all feel like an eventual cash grab. There's going to be so much DLC for this game it should be free to play. Even the day one DLC is $10 just to make a few of your buildings look German and give you one special landmark. Save yourself some money and buy the eventual "game of the year" edition which will include more. By then the servers should be fixed... if they haven't shut them off by then rendering the game unplayable. I'm really disappointed overall. I've played Simcity from the beginning. While I think the game engine is incredibly impressive, the graphics and music are good and there are moments of brilliance when the game works well, the whole thing is brought down by attempts to maximize money gouging at every possible turn. It just seems like a good game ruined by a cynical cash-grab. Feel free to wreck new games EA, but why destroy a beloved game that's been sitting on the shelves untouched for ten years? Expand
  44. Mar 7, 2013
    Hello, I made a metacritic account just for this, Simcity is currently a 69 AUD Frisbee as of 9:48PM Melbourne time. I give my frisbee a 4 out of 10, it just doesn't fly as far as my real frisbee.
  45. Mar 7, 2013
    From what I got to play after about an hour of trying to get it running. By Following a number of different solutions posted online it looked.good and played well that was until it lost it's connection to the server and that was it. Might come back in a month or two but this yet another example of a complete lack of care for the community. Online DRM doesn't stop piracy it's just makes your company look stupid and annoys the people that actually want to pay and play. Expand
  46. Mar 7, 2013
    The game itself is actually fantastic, and the small map size does not bother me at all. It gives the city a nice intimate feeling that adds a lot of emotional depth to the game. I imagine the smaller city size was an absolutely deliberate (and wise) design decision, and not due to tech constraints. That said, the anti piracy always online aspect treats the user like a criminal after they bought the game fair and square. This is not something any customer should stand for, especially with such a high price tag. This game simply cannot be recommended until this is fixed, as it is often completely unplayable due to server problems. The game is great, but I'll agree with the majority here and say EA probably ruined it. Expand
  47. Mar 7, 2013
    I'll start by saying that it is a fun game except for the 20 or so problems that I have PERSONALLY experienced. We'll start with server troubles: My friend and I were trying to play with each other. P1: I couldn't get on any server on my continent so I had to switch, and when she switched she couldn't find me. P2: We went to a different server which forced us to do the tutorial again, but on this server the tutorial was broken and wouldn't progress at all. P3: On this server and on others the 'find friends' UI element was just missing entirely. After about an hour and a half, we finally found eachother on a european server and started playing together. There is more but I want to get to the in game stuff too.

    In game troubles: P4: Crashes, occasional crashes, or cities that load forever until you reset the game. P5: Cities that you claim once, but if you go to region view and try to get back the 'wrong' way tries to make you claim them again. P6: Absolutely terrible concurrency. I gifted 50k simoleons to a neighbor but it didn't show up for 2 hours (but immediately came out of my account). P7: Confusing or broken sharing of power, water, etc. I have a city producing an extra 200MW of power and another starts buying power, but it says it is buying 13MW of available 40MW, and still has a deficit of another 20MW. Why not just get more power??? P8: Firetrucks and buses that are REALLY stupid: If there are multiple fires, all buses go to one fire and let every other place burn. Almost all buses go to one stop, then the next bus stop, etc. I had a line of about 15 buses once. P9: Cities failing to 'process' meaning you can choose to destroy and restart or let the server try to 'process' it to possibly fix it for... at least 12 hours, maybe more, maybe forever? P10: Firetrucks sometimes don't even leave the fire station when there are fires. No explanation... P11: Recyclying centers that just stop recycling. There is recyclable material, storage space to do it, but it just doesn't do any work. P12: I have a surplus of water, but multiple buildings have no water??? P13: Again, concurrency between cities: Some cities that have just appeared don't even show up on the region view, for maybe an hour or more. I want to play with my friends in real time, not waiting for updates like this.

    Anyway, I could go on, but I'm on lunch break so I should wrap this up, but it seems like it COULD be a fun game. I haven't had any trouble with my own network, which I was actually expecting, I only have mild reservations against always-on DRM. But this thing is broken. Avoid it for at least a month I would say.

    The problem is I really want to enjoy it, and I do have fun between the times that I get really frustrated that this thing is released in this terrible state.
  48. Mar 7, 2013
    I was able to play for a few hours yesterday, and what I can say is that the visual aspect of the game and the interface are very well done. It's simple and efficient, you don't need much explainations to know what's going on thanks to the very well designed UI. As for the graphical design itself, the buildings and vehicles look very toyish, I personnaly didn't mind but that didn't feel real.
    In terms of gameplay, well it's really like the other sim cities. I don't understand the "reboot" of SimCity since not much has changed in terms of gameplay, except it became much, much more simple. Indeed, while you may have some negative cash income for a few minutes when you're building stuff, you'll get back on your feet in no time thanks to loans and no-cost RCI zones. Pop houses, raise taxes, people keep coming anyway. Wonderful. This makes the game very sandbox-style, but not for long. Indeed, cities size are very small and you won't spend more than 5 hours to fill completely a city, and another 5-10 hours to upgrade it to its full extent.

    The worst part, though, is how the game is designed to be played: you'll need a permanent connection to internet if you want to play. Yes, SimCity intends to behave like a MMO... for a solo experience (well, you can play with other people too, but you'll still build your own city in the end regardless of what's being built in your neighboors cities). And what a shame this is. As of today, the game is not playable because of servers issues since several hours.
    This raises the question of what will happen, in five years (or less), when EA decides to close the servers. After 10 years of sc4, I sometimes find myself reinstalling the game and play it a little. Obviously this won't be doable with SimCity if the servers are shut down, the game just won't be accessible.
    Add all of those troubles to the fact that you could already buy DLC before the game was launched, and you got the gist of it.
  49. Mar 7, 2013
    Ignoring the DRM/online only requirement/servers are crap issue for a minute I still have mixed feelings. The lack of a save/load feature is painful because you can't experiment with your city layout once you put down your roads, if you made them slightly too widely or narrowly spaced, you can't plop the buildings you want. And since the addons to the different upgradable buildings (a nice feature in itself) can only be placed in certain locations, you may need to bulldoze and rebuild the base building a few times to find the right location but you can't just reload a save to do so. The map size is also way too small. Sure you can specialize and design multiple cities in a region, but I play SimCity because I like creating and designing massive urban sprawl it's too simple to do it in bite sized chunks. And then the region map looks strange with tightly packed squares of development separated by empty wide open spaces. If they want to leave regions intact, so be it, but make them directly adjacent to each other so the empty space is gone its an eyesore otherwise. Now to go back to the server issue pure incompetence. They should have known by the amount of the preorders what the expected server volume needs to be. Once the game rolls out in other countries, the volume is only going to go up, and they haven't even solved the problem for existing customer. Not only is this a PR disaster by itself but EA's overall marketing strategy of micropurchasing depends on satisfied customers. Customers aren't going to be willing to be nickeled and dimed for add-ons if they feel cheated by the initial product. Irritated fanbois with short attention spans are one thing. SimCity has a lot of long term fans who are now well into adulthood and have been playing the series for decades (such as myself) cynical marketing and poor technical execution. This game is taxing everyone's patience and customers deserve much better. ***One final comment from someone who knows PR: thanking customers for their patience when they are actually not patient, and have valid and justifiable reasons for their frustration is the opposite of soothing it causes more frustration by making the speaker sound condescending and arrogant. Just apologize and tell us what you're doing to fix the problems stop thanking us for our waning 'patience'. Expand
  50. Mar 7, 2013
    In line with predictions from the general gaming community, the launch of the new SimCity reboot has been shaky, at best. For the couple of hours I managed to play, thus far, the game seemed fun. The visuals were gorgeous, especially some of the architecture of the shops and residences. The ability to specialize in trading or tourism etc. is an interesting feature which gives a city much needed income, especially due to the small map sizes. The biggest issue with the game is the online only DRM that the community complained about before release, predicting the failure of servers on launch (and into the future). All these predictions have come true. On launch day I managed a couple hours of play. Since then, the servers have been down or so full that I cannot connect. After years of MMO launches, it's mind boggling that a company would not over-prepare for the launch of a game that requires their servers to operate. As a consumer, it's insulting to pay money for a product only to be told that we cannot use it. As of right now, I'd like a refund. Unfortunately, EA support also has queues of multiple hours due to the inadequacy of their preparation for this release. The game may be worth its price in a couple weeks, once these teething issues are sorted out. For now, avoid it. Do not waste your time or money on this product. Expand
  51. Mar 7, 2013
    The best summation of the anticipated SimCity is this: It has potential but its problems far outweigh its majesty.

    The SimCity franchise has taken some of its former elements and brought them into a more modernized environment. I was ecstatic to see that the cities influencing the demands of its surrounding neighbors stuck around. Unlike the previous installments the player is given
    the opportunity to build roads that turn and work around the terrain as opposed to being pre-selected arraignments. While the terraform option had been removed the new layouts make it so that the challenge of working with the terrain offered is a more balanced challenge. Other benefits include not having to re-zone, and power lines, the staple that could make the ideal city a pile of garbage because there was not enough space to place power lines have been eliminated. While this simplifies construction it is one simplification that most would see as beneficial as opposed to detrimental.

    Unfortunately these few positives are the cushion for the detrimental amount of bugs, glitches, and server errors that come along with the game as is. As an individual I am adamant in stating that I am not a fan of 'Origin'. To me I feel that it is the equivalent of Zune to Steam. So learning that I needed to install Origin to play this game was a disappointment but one that I could handle. As with any game that requires the use of proxy installer (Rockstar Social Club) it is a means to ensure that the product can not easily be hacked and illegally downloaded. This leads to problems in that it forces the consumer to have an active internet connection at all times in order to play. The reason I consider this a problem is that it forces the consumer to agree to two conditions. The first being that the game is designed and strongly encourages multi-player to get the full benefit of the game. The second is that if, for any reason, there is a problem with the developer's servers, the game can not be played. The game has been released for two days and this solitary problem is what has led to this title to lose virtually all credibility and anticipation that it built up prior to its release. At certain points one could find themselves stuck on the loader loading screen waiting while it searches for updates. Other times it freezes while it tries to authenticate with the server. Occasionally a message will pop up saying that the server is unavailable and to choose another one. Unfortunately that message will sometimes appear when all servers are down yet the availability says that they are all open. If/when one can get past the loader itself and access the game then a new nightmare begins when the consumer tries to create or join a game. Even though the game loaded and they are in the game the server may be down in which case you can neither create nor join a game. Because all of this is running through Origin half the time the status that Origin and the game itself conflicts with each other. Want to switch to another server since the current one is not working? That requires shutting down the game and going back to the loader where it begins again. Even when playing a region if the server disconnects any progress made from then on out is lost unless a connection is re-established. The last major problem is that, when trying to locate any information regarding server downtime or attempt to find any resolution there is difficulty as to where to go. I have attempted to go to EA to find that a message explaining the current issue is not there. I have gone to the official facebook page to find thousands of people demanding a refund. Twitter seems to give the updates but they are so sparse and vague that the only thing the player can hope for is that the problem will be resolved before the day is over. EA says that they are doing everything possible to allow people to play the game but since its debut SimCity has gone from a long anticipated follow up to a long running franchise to one of the biggest failures and a testament to the fact that when companies are more interested in making sure that they can control the rights of their property that bad things typically follow in its wake. EA can make promises but unless they can manage to fix their connectivity issues and address their dwindling fan base promptly and constantly I fear that this game will be one where, for one that promotes a healthy online community, there will not be one when the game is finally ready for a proper release.
  52. Mar 8, 2013
    The game is great, when the bigger maps come out, it will be perfect. So I am very happy with the game.... but the always online DRM is hell.... Origin says I played simciy for 11 hours... I played it for like 1 hour.... with connection! And it did not save my city!!! I understand the overwhelming dislike and the average of a 1.6, but this is not fair towards the game! Yes the game is very limited because of the small maps, but it is manageable untill the bigger maps will come out... which ofcourse we will have to pay for, thanks EA! The game is worth a 7.5 and with bigger maps (4x4, 8x8) at least a 9. But because of Origin.... it is not worth even more than a 6. Verdict: The game does not deserve to be hated, but Origin and EA do.... so EA YOU DESERVE THE 1.6 AVERAGE! Also, Maxis...... You are to be blamed too! You let this happen! Expand
  53. Mar 17, 2013
    Now after a while, I've played a lot and sadly, the re-occuring bugs, graphical errors, the overall limits of the gameplay has made this game a lot less fun than I initially found it to be. The game gets boring fast. Sadly. I feel I either should have waited until the game had been reviewed and game tested a bit more thoroughly, so I could make a decision of whether to buy or not to buy, because at this point it's money out the window. I had such high hopes for this game. I even thought that if I tried it myself, see for myself, it couldn't be that bad? Unfortunately it was. I don't think this game can be fixed through patches and what not you need an entirely NEW game. EA/Maxis you f*cked up! Expand
  54. Mar 21, 2013
    DRM is a reality of the future of social games. Maxis attempted to make this game social and in the end ruined it because of that. This is not a complaint, its a fact. This is a game that is still in beta as far as I'm concerned, yet it was released, possibly by executive order. Someone near the top needs to be fired.

    To the people complaining about DRM itself, they (you) are ignorant.
    For a social game (even if it has single player) DRM promotes the social aspect of the game. That is why it is being required. DRM is not the problem. The problem was that the SimCity's implementation of DRM is horrible.

    On to the actual game, the cities are too small, and things like "airports" have become a part of the "region". This alone kills the game for me. Creativity in this game is lower than ever before. Its not fun once you have played it through once to a dense city. I will admit that first run though was really fun, but not deserving of a good score at the cost of $60. This game is worth $10 even if it took 50 million dollars to develop.
  55. Mar 11, 2013
    This game starts off looing full of potential but after a few hours its very similar style repetitive game play. Online features look fantastic but I wasn't looking for those features in this game. SimCity for me was always a single player game to be enjoyed once you have a few hours spare in the evening. Its very MMO orientated. Offline play please maxis, hope so very much that the upcoming C&C from EA will be better at launch! Expand
  56. Mar 14, 2013
    SimCity is a fine arcade game to play for a little bit I played 15 hours... but that seems a little short for a $60 game! There isn't much to do in this game other than get frustrated at protesters, not having enough money without pissing off your people and making your people leave and having too much to deal with with how little money that you can accumulate for most of the game. I've never played it, but personally Tropico 3 or 4 looks better since it appears to have more political depth, but that's just me. Expand
  57. Mar 16, 2013
    Against my better judgement, I finally caved in and purchased SimCity. I was quickly faced with server limitations, and had to settle for a server outside of my continent. After many hours of game play, I can clearly see a true gem in this SimCity entry, but it is very difficult to get past all of the bugs, lag and progress loss that commonly occurs do to this ludicrous always online DRM forced on paying customers.

    The City sizes are also disappointing, but the sheer depth of the simulation nearly makes up for it. It would be very much appreciated if larger lots were added to the game's regions, even if they were to come with a higher system requirements warning.

    I have had plenty of fun with the game so far, and I have to say the multiplayer feature can be very entertaining, but it should by no means be forced on us. SimCity was always a very single player centric game, and I think that still holds true for the vast majority of fans. If EA/Maxis patches the game to include a TRULY single player mode for those who don't wish to be bothered by the always online requirement, and all the annoyance it can bring, I would gladly give this game a much higher rating and recommend it to friends. Until then, I simply cannot...
  58. Mar 16, 2013
    This is my first Metacritic review. I'm giving the game a 4. I feel that's an honest score, and it will still raise the user score. The launch was terrible. Completely terrible. The DRM and the map size are two serious issues for anyone considering this game. The game is buggy and feels unfinished. It was a lot of fun for a few hours, but I have little desire to return to it now. It seems more like a tech demo that they decided to get ready for public release. I expect a lot of DLC and future store items to buy. I guess spending $60 on the base game isn't quite enough. Luckily, I got a $20 credit with my pre-order, but I still wish I had just not purchased the game and saved the $40 for something better. Anyways, a warning to anyone thinking about purchasing the game: It's kind of fun, but it has a ton of issues. Maybe wait until it's in the bargain bin or wait for an expansion or future patch to iron out the kinks. Expand
  59. Mar 17, 2013
    Get rid of "origin" PLEASE!!!!!!!!

    Good game, but terrible install process. Long registration and massive file updates make playing the game the same day you bought it, damn near impossible. Confusing registration prompts you to download the game rather then use the actual CD I bought for $60? Why do we even need it then... Microsoft is slipping. You guys need to look at Blizzard
    (starcraft, warcraft etc...) install and registration process and take notes.

    When buying the game at Game Stop, the guy behind the counter said, "Before you buy this I must tell you that a lot of customers are trying to return this game because they are having problems installing the product. We do not accept returns on PC games" I took the risk)

    FIX THE INSTALL AND LOAD TIMES. PUT MORE DATA ON THE ACTUAL DISK and stop trying to always "sell" me something of acquire my email for marketing (typical Microsoft sh**t)
    Get rid of "origin" PLEASE!!!!!!!!
  60. Mar 19, 2013
    I had high hopes for Simscity.. not only was there such a huge build up for it, but they made it look awesome. HOWEVER... I was hugely disappointed. Not only is it online based (annoyingly), but the server crashes all the time, the cities are tiny AND the game crashes.
    Okay the online issue. They should have made this optional. A lot of my time is spent on travelling, which has no
    internet... so how am I supposed to keep track off my cities.
    Notice I said cities.. not only do you have to use internet, you have to put up with tiny cities which run out of spaced ridiculously fast and constantly give you bad reviews as you cant satisfy your cities need for expansion, you have to control numerous cities, or rent them to strangers.
    The only good factor about this is that you can share resources,
    SO yes.
    it has relatively good graphics; compared with the older simscity; but I much prefer simcity the older ones for the simple fact I can make them as large as I want, without having to worry about running out of space so quickly.
  61. Mar 25, 2013
    Not taking into accounts the server issues at launch SimCity has a number of gameplay issues. Fans of the prior series might discover the entire base upon which the simulation is created suffers from design issues. Entire cities can be created without the need of anything but residential areas and the most basic of needs covered. While most of us wouldn't find enjoyment in merely planting residences and let time go, this shows a game broken in the very core. The fact the simulation design allows people to move in, be happy and improve their houses in cities with no jobs and no shopping ripples throughout the game experience. The areas of which you can build your cities is pre-made and compared to earlier SimCitys the area is very limited in size. This is a part of the multiplayer aspect Maxis invisioned. The option for a multiplayer in a SimCity game is in this reader's eyes a great evolution, if not for a few things: The multiplayer part is not really an 'option'. To get the maximum efficiency from your city, it needs to co-operate with other cities. Sure enough you can build multiple cities yourself, but as each is paused when you leave it, there'll never be a feel of a real flow between the cities. Another issue is the interaction between the cities is unimaginary, limited in such ways you can't even decide how much, if or at which price you want to sell the goods you got in excess. It happens at a preset price as soon as someone clicks "buy" in regional view. This is if it even works through the seemingly limitless amounts of bugs with inter-city relations. Perhaps the worst part about the multiplayer 'option' is the way it was used as an excuse of forcing you to be constantly logged in to their game servers. Not only does this force you to be connected to the internet constantly, which most of us are anyways, but it forces us to rely on servers being available. 'A small server crash is not an issue, go do something else' you might say, and yes, I can do that now, but what happens in a number of year's time when SimCity isn't worth keeping around any more? If servers then get shut down, we're left with a product we can't even use any more. When through with all these issues and bugs you're left with a beautyful game and at times a good amount of humor. Who here wouldn't love to shop at "Lead Paint and Baby Oil" for instance? There seems to be a little Maxis soul left in there in the details, but overall the game feels rushed, the old fans forgotten and most of all give you the sense of being 'victim' to a quick moneygrab based on old feelings toward the brand. For experienced and long term SimCity players, the issues in the basic design will most likely come as a huge problem, same would most likely go for the restricted space offered. Personally I wouldn't advice anyone to buy the game till it's on sale at half off, the quality of the game is simply closer to a $30 game, if even that. The most frustrating thing is that I'm not only giving SimCity a low score, I am giving the future of the brand the same low score. Based on a broken design, a bugged game, visions that might've been good but where the execution failed and a raped brand, which only redeeming qualities are the humor and the beautyful graphics I'll give it a 4. Pozz... Expand
  62. Mar 29, 2013
    Don't bother purchasing this game. It's been over 3 weeks, and core features of the game (filters for joining multiplayer, cheetah speed, global trading) are either disabled or not working properly. As a supposed "multiplayer" game, there is very little, if any opportunity to play with others outside your own friends list. Beyond the launch problems (which were immensely frustrating), the game feels too simple to have any longevity. Small city spaces fill up quick, and populations stop growing either because of the small space, or the broken traffic. The only redeeming quality of the game is that it looks beautiful. But again, a game that looks nice and plays like dirt, is not a game you should play. Expand
  63. Apr 21, 2013
    Written April 21, 2013. 50 days since launch. This game could have been really good. I wouldn't call it great though. EA and Maxis made the classic corporate mistake of thinking they know what people actually want better than the people do. They ran completely in the wrong direction with this version. Benefits: · Fully 3D rendered buildings · Add-ons for buildings allow for limited customization
    · Curved road system looks great
    · Multiplayer option
    · Clean layout of OSD
    · Game runs smoothly 95% of the time
    · "Sandbox Mode" cheat mode built in

    · Always online ruins single player:
    No local saves
    No ability to undo mistakes
    No ability to rollback cities after using disasters
    Limit of 10 regions per server. Not allowed to transfer cities to other servers
    No ability to access cities on one server from another server
    · Building have generic names on buildings (markets named "Food", banks named "Bank")
    Doesn't apply to DLC ad content (Nissan Leaf charging station)
    · Few landmarks included even in limited edition (no doubt saved for DLC)
    · Glassbox engine not nearly as complex as led to believe:
    Poor traffic handling
    Inflated statistics
    Sims go to random jobs, then go to random homes
    · Bugs. Lots of them. Too many to list.
    · Tiny Cities. My small interstate city is 9 times larger than the plots allowed in game, and our tallest
    building is the local courthouse. Skyscrapers in a city 1.2 miles square? Really?
    · One road connection to the rest of the region. One highway exit, connecting hundreds of thousands of
    people to areas outside of their little city. I've seen traffic backups longer than my city is wide.
    Commuters stuck for simulated days.
    · Intercity trade and great works projects suffer extreme lag. Even when all the cities in a region are on
    one player's account.

    I could play SimCity 4 for days, and not get bored. I start falling asleep after 2-3 hours with this one. Instead of sticking with a formula that worked, Maxis and EA decided that limiting our creativity was the right way to go. Curved roads are practically useless on a map that small. Changes to your city are permanent, unless you physically unplug your modem. Many small bugs persist, despite updates.
    I would compare this game to a new car. A brand new car whose engine stutters, radio works intermittently, occasionally won't start, GPS attempts to run you in circles, and is boring to drive. And when you take it back to the dealer, they deny that they sold you a lemon, and try to sell you upgrades.
  64. Apr 29, 2013
    I play Simcity since the first one. I can say: EA destroyed the series. The map is too little and you have very limited options to build a nice city, among many other problems.
  65. May 12, 2013
    According to origin I have now logged 100 hours of sim city gameplay time. My guess is about 75 hours of these are real gameplay times, due to the server issues upon launch. These have been fixed and I am not taking these into account scoring the game.

    Even though I consider building the city to be solid fun, there are too many bugs and design problems in this game for it to deserve a
    sufficient grade.

    An example; and keep in mind we are now at patch "3.0" and yet I still keep running into game-breaking bugs. After spending 5 hours designing your town to the best of your abilities and judging it is the appropriate time to educate your sims it is extremely frustrating to see your students being picked up by schoolbuses from neighbouring towns, never to be returned again.

    Another example; after giving up on educating your town and switching to tourism industry it is extremely frustrating to have 10.000 tourists enter your town by train, only to have them all leaving by taxi. Even though sim cities traffic issues have been mitigated somewhat, this still leads to a city breaking traffic jam.

    I could name several more examples I have personally encountered, but instead I would like to refer any interested buyers to the official simcity forums and its bug list; Notice that the ratio of game breaking bugs to merely inconvenient bugs is about 1/3.

    My judgment could be summarized as;
    The gameplay has a lot of potential. However the amount of bugs and several suboptimal design choices have culminated in a product unworthy of anyones investment at this time. The game feels somewhat "unfinished" to me. A feeling backed by the amount of patches issued in the past two month.
  66. May 26, 2013
    I tried to like this game. I really did. I spent a whole 32 pounds on this and I thought it'd be rude to not play it, so I gave it a go. What I got? A large laggy sack of disappointment. The Game itself has to connect to the Internet or you can't play, so I can barely play it. When you do start, you get an overly long laggy tutorial that has some useless features. And if you play multiplayer, thieves and other can arrive from other players city and mess up yours. Things cost too much coins in game, so you can barely upgrade roads or build well needed things. And Sandbox mode isn't even Sandbox, you have limited money and not everything is unlocked. And the lag... oh I hate it. I am not one to care about graphic, but I had to turn off shading, shadows clouds etc to make it not lag. And then it looked like an Elementary School Drawing. Give this a miss. But the only good thing is that if your city sucks, natural disasters occur. So hey, you don't fell bad. Expand
  67. Nov 24, 2013
    Sadly, i was disapointed by SimCity. I expected alot, and i was let down. You are forced to be online all the time, and then the servers are not working. What a great start. Anyway i forgave Maxis and after they fixed their servers i gave it another try... It is just so messy and buggy. It really seems unfinished to me.
    Missing support and not listend to the beta Testers SCREAMING:
    "BIGGER MAPS!!" those are the things that make me tell you:
    Dont waste your money on this one, Seriously.
  68. Feb 1, 2014
    It certainly had the potential to be a really great game--worthy of the SimCity franchise. But it fell short by an "always on" DRM...I'm sorry, an unnecessary connection to an EA server. Now that wouldn't be so aweful IF EA made 100% sure their servers are always functional and can handle the traffic--of course there's always the chance something may happen with your isp too. Anyway, it was completely unnecessary to make the game work and caused many problems.

    Now on to game play, which the raw gameplay itself I found to be very good--detailed buildings, individual sims, etc. I also enjoyed upgrading buildings and working toward certain goals to unlock more options in the game. However, as others have pointed out, the maps are smaller than I would have liked and there's no option that gives you larger maps.

    Overall, the game was okay but it could have been a whole lot better.
  69. Mar 24, 2014
    I love SimCity 2000, SimCity 3000, SimCity 4, The Sims, SimCopter, et cetera. EA Ruined Maxis, this game stinks. SimCity 2013 is a scam and EA is the snake oil selling con artist. Disgusting.
  70. Mar 11, 2013
    Ok now that the servers are back up and running alright, here is my proper review. my rating was a 3/10 because of all the crap this game threw at us at its launch. to be honest this game had one of the worst launches of any game, in history. i don't think this game will ever truly recover from it, this 1.5 rating is way too low for a game like this. and many people will not change their reviews because they are too fed up with the DRM. which is totally understandable. but the game is really fun. you can create entire trade networks and intricate cities. this increases the depth from the previous simcity games. managing the city is very fun. managing buildings is an amazing feature. although map sizes restrict you from building more advanced structures later on that is really my only complaint. this game has tons of potential and will have DLC i assure you (mostly because EA is a jerk) good game. sucks the EA gave it a bad rep. this DRM is a horrible thing for the gaming community but that doesn't mean simcity is a bad game Expand
  71. Mar 22, 2013
    When drm and server problems fade, the real weakness of the game shines through. Region lag is a continuing issue, and individual plots are way too small to accommodate any reasonably sized city. The AI is a joke, with traffic patterns driving you crazy. It'll take them a year or so to release the game they promised; if they don't give it to you for free, don't bother.
  72. Mar 5, 2013
    The game is great.

    The servers are however constantly down, rendering the game completely unplayable. Until that issue is rectified, then this is the best I can do. Had they actually taken the time to properly speculate on how much server space they would actually need, this game would be getting an 8 from me right now.
  73. PL3
    Mar 5, 2013
    critic review is just bullsh*t. DO NOT SPEND 60$ on this. The city is just TOO DAMN SMALL. Server always busy. Feel exaclty like the diablo syndrom. ANd the game just tell you what to do. you do it and that sit. We need more police car!! do it. done. We need more classroom!! do it. done. over and over again.
  74. Apr 9, 2013
    MAP SIZE WTF!!!???

    The "always online" feature is painfull, but not as painfull as the map sizes. Gameplay is now extremely limited. What happened to sprawling cities where you build and manage big areas and you get to chose exactly where in this big area housing, industry, skyscrapers etc. goes?? Now you are confined to a bunch of small towns and freedom to design your dream city is
    out the window! Expand
  75. Mar 5, 2013
    It's Diablo 3 all over again, but this is worse, because SimCity always was a single player game and now it doesn't even have an option to play it offline. Also, the cities are extremely small, there is no terraforming, can't load a previous save (no experimentation), there is useless and unrealistic empty space between cities and lack of transportation options (no subways!). I hate you EA for ruining one of my favorite franchises. Expand
  76. Mar 7, 2013
    Their is really no better way to put this, Will Wright enjoyed portions of the game itself, but his lack of actual experience in the franchise or activity "creating" outside of the original has long since past. So typically, when compared to previous entries in the franchise, this title is basically a turd wrapped in incredibly tasty bacon- Great on the outside, but the core mechanics of the game are a massive step back from the established concepts. The tragedy of all of this, is that EA is likely to not take any feedback whatsoever from the reactions on sites like metacritic and will continue to release expansion/ content packs in a vain attempt to tie Simcity to "The Sims. trilogy." Very little good comes from games that are released in this form, DRM, Online Only and I own a lot of software these days. The twist is that titles I've payed good money for that use this methodology are actually titles I don't bother to play anymore hardly at all. Of course software companies do not care, they already have my money and really we should be the consumers to spot this lunacy and stop it on our own. The irony is piracy, with its foreshadowed "end" near according to the six strikes rule, couldn't be a better example of the people that are still getting the better product overall. I own all the Simcity games, I own all of the Sims games up to the second one and its just astonishing to see backlash like this go unheeded once again. You'd think a company like EA would learn from follies like "Spore," but even years after that disastrous release, they still commit to this absurd idea that a good percentage of us don't want to be legitimate customers. Their are more people than ever purchasing software (in the middle of a recession- I may add) and yet these once "industry leaders" offer very little respect to the consumer base they rely on for everything. Piracy isn't the only way to understand why a game is floundering after release and much like Diablo III, the end result will be the same with such ridiculous security standards. Was I excited when Diablo III was announced featuring constant "online activation" at all times just so I could play it? Of course not. It garnered no interest from me regardless of such silly anti-piracy measures. I enjoyed Diablo and its sequel, namely because they were solid games that were received well by most people when they came out. Did I enjoy the Warcraft series? Of course and does that mean that I'm a filthy pirate for not purchasing World of Warcraft or even playing it? I guess what I'm merely suggesting is, if the interest is there- than a sale they would see. These companies pump up their advertising for these games, get Will freakin' Wright to comment on it, and it still ends up being a terribly average game. Meanwhile, Tomb Raider is actually pretty solid, and you can bet that I will be purchasing that game fairly soon. Meanwhile, another city builder game that hardly even builds from its former will never get my attention or my sale. It certainly won't be getting pirated either. Expand
  77. Mar 7, 2013
    SimCity is an amazing game. There's hours worth of challenges just getting the game installed and operating at a base level, then then later trying to get it to connect. Once you can actually get a region started, you might be able to actually start a city. Once you do start a city, the ACTUAL amazing game starts. And it is really good. Deserving of the name and the franchise. Until you try and save the game that is, which is when you'll notice that there is no manual save option. You have to trust that the game has managed to save your progress. Which is fine except it usually doesn't save anything. Anyway, this game doesn't work, don't buy it right now. Once it does actually work though, it's a great game. Expand
  78. May 7, 2013
    Almost 2 months after release and the game is still very broken. The first 10 or so hours is some of the most fun i've had, however after that the bugs show up and the rest of the time is spent fighting against the game mechanics or bugs (often almost impossible to tell the difference). Traffic is by far the worst and shows that basing the sims (people) off the same AI that runs the sewage was a horrible mistake.

    Maybe with a few more MAJOR updates this game could pass as something more that a Farmville wanabe on Facebook... Great potential but very very poorly executed.
  79. Mar 8, 2013
    Well this is frustrating, isn't it? That's the best description, I think, Frustration. Not because I'm suprised, or not because I cant get onto an online game on the launch day (or even week), thats to be expected these days. No, I'm frustrated that the game "needs" to be online in the first place. The online "requirement" adds nothing to the game that Option Multiplay wouldn't have done a million time better. It's something no body wanted stopping us playing a game we want to play. And now EA are trying removing Leaderboards and Achieviments and other online featurs that were sold to players as the reason we should love to be online. So now we're online (if your lucky enough to be online) for the sole reason of being online. If EA want me to be always online to play a game I paid £60 for, then they should be always online when I want to play it. Expand
  80. Mar 13, 2013
    I bought this game as the servers began to stabilize, hoping to have a good experience now that the game is supposed to be playable. Boy was that a mistake.

    This game is very broken right now. None of the advisers work right, telling you to zone the wrong things and build the wrong things. None of the indicators work right. I have filled my city with fire departments and hospitals, with
    max coverage over every inch of the city. I'm still being yelled at by my Sims for not having enough fire/medical coverage. I have three police stations and I'm being yelled at about crime levels. I have two grade schools, a high school, a community college, a university, and a library... yep, I'm being yelled at for not having any education. I have plenty of citizens and plenty of jobs, but the citizens complain about unemployment and the businesses complain about no workers. The search function to find a region to play in does not work. This game is horribly horribly broken and I am going to seek a refund immediately. Please do not waste your money! Expand
  81. Mar 21, 2013
    Seems like quite a fun game. However, after a night of play, the game informed me that my city was 'not processing properly' booted me back to the main menu and rolled my city back to the last good save, removing hours of work. The game will now not save any progress. If you are going to force cloud saving in the name of piracy prevention (let's not kid ourselves, what other possible reason could they have for this inconvenience) AT LEAST MAKE IT WORK PROPERLY. Expand
  82. Mar 7, 2013
    The game itself is actually pretty decent. The simulation runs nicely, the graphics are good, the devs did a great job on the game. The delivery and DRM is killing it though. I think most players feel like they are being teased by EA since in 3 days it has spent more time offline causing issues than actually allowing people to play. I would rate it better but the fact is the Digital Rights Management that EA has forced on us is causing so many issues that they ruined a game that would otherwise be a 7 or 8 Expand
  83. Mar 6, 2013
    If the game had an Offline Option after logging in like SC2 had then it wouldn't be that bad of a game. The basic problem this model has is that in the long term you only provision for 20% of your users being online at any one point in time. However, during launch that's not exactly the case. You can easily have 80% or more logging in all at the same time. Without an offline mode to release the stress of everyone logging in you end up with people taking the day off to play and being justifiably upset that they can't even start-up the game. The tutorial could have and should have been an offline option. It would have made it so that people could have a taste of the game without hammering the servers all at once. This model also requires the servers to be up-to-date. If you were able to get on last night and then later this morning you may have found yourself faced with a forced tutorial button that you weren't last night. This is clearly due to the servers being on a different version of the software. The is the most likely cause of game corruptions this morning. A 60$ franchise title is not the time or place to test out new strategies. You should know this will work long before you launch. Instead we're faced with inexperienced admins who didn't know to keep the servers up to date for launch or to turn them Off if they were on the wrong version. This is stuff you only learn with experience, and Sim City was not the time or place to get that experience. This tells me that they're using an Ad-Hoc methodology, and we should expect more hiccups as long as they insist on an instant roll-out of updates and not have the server go though some burn time to make sure it works first. For Single Player the maps are a bit small. You can work around it a bit, and I can see how this encourages Multi-Player. However, I'm the type of person who plays MMOs Single Player so I personally get very little benefit from this model. The game play from prior versions is vastly improved. If you're willing to wait a Month for server load to die down you probably should wait. You'll be able to get a far superior experience if you do. Expand
  84. Mar 5, 2013
    Another example of EA failing royally. Always online, chances you can't reach server, forced social facebook crap, small regions to built cities in, there are simply too many limitations to enjoy the game. Another case of EA trying to build a "product" for the dumb masses and facebook generation, instead of building on the strengths of Sim City 4.

    Played at a friends house and this game
    is definitely worse than Sim City 4 and tries to be a Societies advanced. So if you are a player with low standards and happen to be a member of the facebook generation you might enjoy this mediocre game, if you are a gamer with standards, you stay clear and tell EA with your wallet that they should finally handle games as games and not as products with limitations, because they think the players have not enough intellect to grasp a more complex gameplay. This mindset of the big publishers sickens me.

    Next gameseries down the drain, just like Dead Space 3. EA has lost their touch, and the developers have to suffer.
  85. Mar 8, 2013
    I'm not going to go into the details because it's already been said by everyone else. I won't simply give it a "0" either because it's a great game if you ever get to play it, but the frustrations with server issues destroy the experience. If I do successfully login, I'm too ticked off to enjoy it because I'm just waiting until I get kicked out again. Folks say that you should review a game based on the gameplay itself, but the gameplay hinges on being able to connect to a server. EA said it was part of the experience. The start menu is part of the experience for most video games. If you were stuck at the start menu forever, then the game would get poor reviews because it's broken. People are stuck at what is essentially the start menu for SimCity, so, in its current sate, it is broken.

    I can see this turning into a case study for future game design students and developers on how not to run your business. The fall of EA (hopefully) would only validate the entire thing. Do yourself a favor and save your money unless they magically make an offline version or update for it. I had originally written a positive review, but I felt compelled to come back and replace it with this one because I couldn't stand the feeling of betrayal anymore. I really want to like the game, but I'm tired of looking like an idiot trying to defend it despite everything that has happened. Fix it or finish committing professional suicide already EA because I'm done with you.
  86. Apr 9, 2013
    Game has been released for over 1 month. STILL unable to maintain a stable connection to the low pop servers. STILL full of bugs, basic things like garbage dumps never producing trucks etc. Would probably rate as 7+ if the game was finished and could be played offline.
  87. Mar 16, 2013
    I want to like this game, I honestly do. I keep trying to play it, but it always ends the same way: frustration.

    The server, are reasonably ok now, even though most social features are turned off. Other things, like Cheetah Speed, are still missing, and regions are still shaky in their synchronization (even failing to save your work in rare cases).

    Everything above this paragraph
    will be fixed before long, that is guaranteed.

    The greater problem is the actual game. Not only is the balance of the gameplay mediocre at best; the actual simulations are horrible. Earlier SimCity games *tried* to simulate real cities, with varied success. This game, however, doesn't even try. There are no simulations of real-world behavior or city planning. Instead, the game is completely focused on the automated behavior of "agents" in a completely artificial system.

    At best, your population seems a bit dumb. At worst, your city becomes completely irrational, and requires you to build your city the *opposite* way of real cities.

    The game engine is fantastic, and the potential for great simulations is greater than any game I've seen the last 20 years. In fact, the Glassbox engine is much more interesting and revolutionary than any Crytek, Unreal, or Frostbite engine. Not because of graphics, but because of gameplay.

    Unfortunately, the developers lack any knowledge of the subject matter they intend to simulate. And instead of hiring experts to help them out, they let AI programmers build systems that have nothing to do with real cities. The engine could have done great things, but it is fed with sub-par pathfinding and unrealistic behaviors.

    In the ends, you can have a lot of fun with the new SimCity. As long as you don't expect it to actually simulate cities.
  88. X0R
    Mar 27, 2013
    Lots of negative reviews here, so I won't go through this with a new microscope. Overall, it's been a very disappointing experience so far. Previous Simcity versions were great for the times they were developed in IMHO I really thought they were going to release something very special and amazing for 2013. Outside of the lame reasons to use server DRM instead of something similar but more functional. The frequent downtime and overall bugginess is awful. I read that one of the developers said something to the effect that this has MMO components. Where? For example, I created an instance but you can't find it when browsing player cities. After a day or two, the game is now boring to me. Expand
  89. Mar 15, 2013
    I read news about it, but I decided to take the bait and see what the game is all about because I am (now was) a simcity fan. I bought it a week after it came out so I didn't have much server issues. Presentation may be pretty(cities they show you in youtube looks great, which made me buy the game) but once you get down into playing it, you realize so many things broken or missing. Things that are broken (such as simple pathfinding) was commented by EA that they will fix it soon. Other things that are broken (such as multiplayer), is broken and will be for a very long time until they fix the servers and fix the way cities interact within regions. Things that are missing, EA will probably sell them for bucks (subway, zoo, etc etc). In summary, they didn't deliver what they promised to, and while it is fine that they wanted to build from ground up, it doesn't mean you take contents out of your previous simcity. This game is a utter disaster. Expand
  90. Mar 5, 2013
    I suggest that people ignore those ridiculously positive scores from critics as they are likely biased. When then game first launched I was able to play for a few hours and I was addicted. For the most part the game was fun and interesting, except there are some bugs like poor vehicle paths and unnecessary traffic congestion that can't be resolved without a patch from EA.. The major problem is that this game requires a constant connection to EA servers. Tonight I got home from work to play and I could not connect to the game in my region. Granted- all internet based games seem to have high traffic on launch. But this type of game shouldn't even require an online connection to play sandbox modes. Since I am not able to play in the the North American region, I decided to try the European regions. When I connected and started playing I was forced to play the tutorial (you cannot skip it) which was somehow bugged because the game puts me into the tutorial region but none of the menu's or actions are available. So not only can I NOT play the game offline in a sandbox style mode, but even when I connect, I am forced to play a tutorial scenario that is bugged to where I can't progress past and cannot be skipped. I truly enjoyed playing this game last night but these Online-DRMs NEED TO GO! Also there needs to be a way to skip the tutorial.. EA has published games long enough to know better than this. So far I am disappointed. Expand
  91. Mar 8, 2013
    Dear heavens, I really dislike this game, which was particularly hard for me to do, considering how much I like the previous ones. I don't wish to turn into one of those "IT'S NOT AS GOOD AS THE ORIGINAL!" screaming fanboys, but here I have no choice. While I will concede that many of the game's aspects have been streamlined and made more accessible, but they have made it too easy. At no point did I feel like an actual mayor, having to make difficult decisions about whether to fund the police or the hospital, whether to pay for a school or a motor-way, but instead I felt like a child playing in a really advanced sandbox.
    And, of course, the "Always online DRM" is absolutely pathetic and an utterly stupid idea.
    My recommendation, don't bother with this game, buy something else.
  92. Mar 23, 2013
    Too many bugs that frustrate you to make this game enjoyable. I have buildings that regularly close reporting they are without power even with 100MW of excess generation.
    Traffic chaos, car get stuck for days at junctions.
    Lack of workers seems to be a common issue above 200k population causing power stations, oil pumps and fire stations to close. Doesn't matter how many schools you
    have, even they sometimes close due to lack of workers Expand
  93. AoR
    Mar 21, 2013
    I'm in a good mood (and I love the SimCity series) so I start with the Pro's.

    + Dataviews: The presentation of issues and shortages is excelent and even better (because more accurate) than in Sim City 4.
    + Modular extensibility of civic buildings: Other than in Sim City 4 police stations, schools and other similar buildings don't have a sphere of influence. If your school doesn't have
    enough space for al the pupils you simply build a new extension and improve the capacity of this school. Awesome!

    It's right, these two points are the single positive aspects of the new Sim City. My fan-heart is bleeding when I think about the possibilities of a real Sim City 5, based on SC4 with an advanced region part.

    - Small Maps: Okay, the maps are not small they're tiny absurd puny!
    - Curvy roads: This should be a Pro, but according to the point above, it's a absolut senseless feature.
    - Bugs: The "new" Glassbox-Engine, which simulate the whole behavior of the sims/residents, commercial interactions and so on, is so buggy atm that I'm not able to numerate half of the varios bugs and errors. The traffic bug is only the tip of the iceberg.
    - Multiplayer: Had anyone ever thought "Hey it would be cool to play together with a friend of me now." during playing Sim City 4? I never, but multiplayer sounds funny in the first presentations. But Sim City has no "real" multiplayer: Everything you could do with other players together, you're able to do it solo. There is absolut no real reason for the existence of the multiplayer modus in the actual design.
    - Always-On: I'm not a fan of DRM but I understand the reasons to make some games always-on. To example Diablo 3 to prefent dupes and to secure the auction house. But in Sim City there is no gameplay reason to be always online. And the so-called social features: This is only a game! If I want to contact my friends I grap my phone or start my IM. I don't need these functionality in a single-player game!
  94. Mar 12, 2013
    As many others have stated, this could have been a great game. The developer (Maxis) and publisher (EA) had probably from the beginning planned for always-online DRM. That is, in order to play the game by yourself you must have a constant secure connection to EA's server. This puts you at the mercy of EA's hardware & IT team, something that is beyond your control.---------------------------------------------------

    Released on March 5th, it is now late afternoon March 12th and there are still major server issues. I am currently on West Coast 4 and am getting long que times trying to join, and it isn't even peak hours on the west coast. I can only assume the load will increase as most people get off work and arrive home in the next hour or two.--------------------------------------------------------

    SimCity has traditionally been a single player game many people like to play around in for hundreds of real time hours. Since SimCity is "always multiplayer", in order to play by ones self you must create a region and set it to "Private" mode where only you or invited friends can join. The whole idea of that is counter-intuitive in the fullest. Instead of a traditional "Single Player" and "Multiplayer" button on the main menu that has worked for decades, Maxis forces you to click "Play" and enter the multiplayer screen. Someone not that initiated into how games work will find it frustrating to start a singleplayer game even though the "single player" is technically classified as private multiplayer.----------------------------------------

    Maxis & EA are in full damage control public relations mode, all cheery smiles and apologies. Sadly, a large portion of the previously angry customer-base was easily bought with the offer of a free game. Instead of bombarding EA & Maxis with thousands of angry letters & emails demanding the removal of Online DRM and "Always multiplayer" nature of SimCity, they instead were bought off for around $60 and are now towing the line. They seem to think that companies releasing unfinished or highly flawed/untested products is A-ok, as long as they "pinky swear" to fix the game which the timeframe is never admitted. It could be 1 month or even two months before a game is fixed, but there will still be that large group of customers with unyielding blind faith, always ready to defend the happy, cheery gaming company that just recieved 60+ dollars from them for a buggy, non-working product.----------------------------- If you are wondering why game developers and publishers are getting away with extremely sloppy business practices, you need only look at the modern gamer. The customers are the problem because they do not vote with their wallets and protest in writing.--------------------------When you buy a new car, it usually comes with some kind of warranty. If your transmission for example blows seconds after your off the lot, they will replace it for free immediately. Conversely, you expect the car to be 100% working properly and built correctly when you buy it, and every car manufacturer does everything possible to make sure that happens long before you fork over the cash. The same MUST be true for all products or services. Mistakes do happen, but things of the magnitude of SimCity do not just happen accidentally. Someone somewhere made the decision that lower costs were more worth it than a working game. There will likely be bugs on all release of games, but we have the right to demand that their game work properly. In SimCity's case, it does not even work at all.-------------- Don't believe the public relations spin and the attempt to buy your sympathy and loyalty back. If you have any principles at all, for god sakes please make your integrity one of them. Show EA/Maxis that no, you cannot be simply be bought for $60. Demand they remove Online DRM, demand a deserved true Single Player, among various other small things.------ I rated this a 3 out of 10, only because in the extremely short time I have played the actual game, it is well done. Probably the biggest sadness of all is that underneath these unacceptable business practices, a good development team has produced a pretty awesome game.
  95. Mar 14, 2013
    I am assessing this game based on my 25 hours of experience. This game is fun up to a point but the mid to late game mechanics are horrendously broken. Traffic is a hideous monster to control and if you do by some miracle manage to organised it the game is incredibly easy. The only challenge is traffic management. It feels more and more like a glorified Facebook game without the social game requirements. Region trading is horrendously broken, commuters commute but when they do the traffic is so horrendous because you only have one entrance to your city. EVEN WITH mass transit maxed out including trains and boats, it's just ridiculous. The online requirements suck too, I've lost a 9 hour city due to the servers. Also the region play is rubbish due to the servers, I was playing a region with my girlfriend (hot seat style) and I waited TEN MINUTES for the servers to update our own singleplayer region so I could send power to my girlfriends city. This is just dumb, it isn't fun. tldr: it starts out very fun but after you get over the "creativity" aspect of creating a city it becomes very boring and very broken. Might be good in a few months when it's patched although many features are not as advertised (such as "full simulation" which is a flat out lie). The DRM just makes everything worse. Expand
  96. Mar 7, 2013
    Lots of fun playing but the server problems are extremely frustrating considering there is no real time interaction with other players. This game should have been single player offline capable, the fact that it is online only is an enormous downside.
  97. Mar 5, 2013
    I love the actual game for the most part, but the fact that this is a game that should have been single player and now I just can't plain play I have to give this at best a 3. Maxis did a wonderful job and I have no doubt that EA forced this BS always online drm from the start and the multiplayer aspect. Always online has been, and continues to be a terrible idea.
  98. Apr 5, 2014
    This game was, is, and always will be fundamentally broken. The city sizes are WAY WAY WAY too small. You fill the map in literally one hour of playing. It's a single-player game that requires you to play online on some horribly buggy and slow servers.
  99. Mar 5, 2013
    Played this game for 6 hours. DO NOT BUY IT. I got disconnected from the server 3 cannot save your own game! So there is no more let me test and reload if it doesn't work. I started over at least 10 times while getting used to some of the features. The city size is just unacceptable. Its not a city AT ALL...More like a village. You will fill it up in an hour. I'm already bored with the game. I won't even get into the always on drm...its a terrible move IMO...but in addition to that the game is not worth the money. I gave it a 3 because some of the new features are neat and useful but its they aren't enough to save the experience. Buy tomb raider instead. Expand
  100. Mar 5, 2013
    All the 10 positive reviewers are complete morons. Spouting rubbish to try and defend this game. My favourite so far was, "There's a reason why it's sitting at 91% from the critics right now" Jaylenko Do I need to point you in the direction of; MASS EFFECT 3, DIABLO 3, COD:MW2&3, COD:BOPS1&2 ETC ETC to make you realise just how stupid that kind of statement is? These are all prime examples of games that were complete and utter blunders, had next to no innovation in just about any aspect of their game and yet reviewers gave them all extremely favourable reviews. It would almost lead someone to believe that EA/Activision are blackmailing Reviewers, or Buying them out, telling them they won't give them games pre-release or bribing them so they get a good review. Honestly if anyone ACTUALLY believes any kind of Big Gaming review websites these days, they're a complete moron. Now onto these same people trying to defend Always Online DRM, you can't defend it, PERIOD. It's a cheap and dirty practice that holds no place in the gaming world. What happens when you grab your Laptop and go somewhere that doesn't have internet access? What happens to the people with bad connections? What happens to your game when the servers crash? What happens when they do maintenance and you can't play for hours? What happens when the Cloud Saves glitch and you have to roll back your town (Which btw has already happened to people)? Honestly the problems with always online DRM is endless and serves no place in Gaming. Have a Singleplayer version of the game which can be accessed without Origin or can be accessed from a "Origin Offline Mode (Where you don't need to log in Like you can do in Steam)" and then have a Multiplayer version, then people get to choose which they prefer and you can do make changes to the different versions of the game without effecting the other. It's a disgusting practice by EA (And Blizzard for that matter with D3) and if you are enabling this kind of crap by buying these companies games then you are part of the Cancer that is slowly destroying gaming. I suppose I should talk about the game, well it doesn't come out till the 7th in Australia and I wasn't going to buy it anyway, I've boycotted all EA Products. But there's streams going on and Videos all over the net showcasing the gameplay (In great detail mind you since Press had the game for a solid week or so pre-release and made tons and tons of cities). And they all agree it's good, but not great. I only gave the game a 2 because morons are giving this 10 to try and counter-balance the 0's, and whilst I think the 0's are taking things a little to far, low scores have to be given to balance. Frankly with none of this always online rubbish, bigger build plots and less focus on Multiplayer, I'd say this game could definitely be a Solid 7-8/10. In it's current state, but without Always Online DRM probably a 5/10 is an honest Score. But sadly with the Always online BS in place, I think the 3-4/10 mark is spot on where this game deserves to be. Expand

Mixed or average reviews - based on 75 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 75
  2. Negative: 10 out of 75
  1. 65
    Given enough patches and DCLs, SimCity might eventually become the game that should have been on its release and justify the ambiguous choices that its developers made. [May 2013]
  2. May 9, 2013
    Hints at great things but is limited by small cities and promises it can't deliver on. [June 2013, p.80]
  3. May 9, 2013
    There's more problems with this game than I have words. Looks great though. [June 2013, p.80]