(Near) Futurama: SimCity Expanding Into Tomorrow

By Nathan Grayson on September 20th, 2013 at 10:00 am.

Play 'good' and rely on sources of clean energy, or make Blade Runner. Either way, we all win!

NEWSFLASH: SimCity still isn’t very good. It mostly functions now, but that doesn’t mean it’s particularly deep or enjoyable. But time has healed part of a wound, so maybe more of it will stitch up the rest? That, I suppose, is the idea behind upcoming expansion SimCity: Cities of Tomorrow, which takes your buzzing metropolis 50 years into the fuuuuuuuuuture. Will this bring it forward (or, I suppose, back) into the Good Ages? Time – as ever – will tell.

For now, Maxis isn’t going too far into detail about what the expansion will include, but here’s the gist:

“What will cities look like 50 years from now? Better yet – how will they be constructed? Do you want to build a beautiful, clean technology-driven city that relies on the knowledge of the all-knowing Academy? Or maybe a city consumed by the gluttony and consumerism of the OmegaCo? Or maybe a little of both? How you decide to transform your tomorrow is all up to you.”

Apparently that will include new forms of transportation and power, tall-enough-to-poke-god/you-in-the-eye MegaTowers, and probably also other words awkwardly combined to form shiny, awe-inspiring FutureNouns.

SimCity: Cities of Tomorrow will be out on November 12th. Is anyone excited about this in the slightest, or do we all know better by this point?

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56 Comments »

  1. Gap Gen says:

    Of course, knowing EA’s recent history of releases upon loading up this game for the first time ants will stream out of your computer and strip your flesh down to the bone. And the servers won’t work.

  2. BobbyDylan says:

    *Mandatory Always Online Rant*

    • Bostec says:

      *Agreement, some EA bashing, some Simcity bashing, end with pun/joke/lols*

    • schlusenbach says:

      Won’t-buy-from-origin-anyway-remark

      DLC-flooding-concerns

      Lack-of-city-sims-sadface

      Splendid-”Indie-to-the-rescue”-ending: Banished, http://www.shiningrocksoftware.com

      • Kollega says:

        *Complaint about how Banished isn’t what i want, because what i want is a present-day city sim.*

        *Explanation of how, in my opinion, SimCity 4 was the highest point of the genre, and it’s sad how no-one is building in that direction.*

        • Beernut says:

          *remark about how we used to walk 10 miles uphill in the snow every day and everything costed a nickel*

        • Talksintext says:

          Remark about how SC4 with all the mods and community content that came out in the past decade is still an awesome game that, given what a large percentage has now been done by the community, might as well have the Maxis logo stripped and an open-source one added.

          Remark about how EA couldn’t have bested what’s already available (SC4+mods), just added pretty graphics and dumbed it down enough to sell mucho copies, and the only people surprised are either too young to know better, easily multi-fooled, or let their hopes get ahead of their realism.

          • Zorn says:

            *wistfully thinking of Sim City 2000, never having found something that came close, never having heard about mods for Sim City 4 before, thinking about maybe getting it..?*

  3. Mashakosha says:

    I can see this quickly turning into Sims Syndrome. That is to say it’ll be inundated with “expansion packs” which just make the game feel slightly less incomplete until the last one comes out, at which point it -might- feel like a game you’d pay £30 for.

  4. distantlurker says:

    There’s an evil corporation that churns out sh*t? Wonder what the inspiration for that was….

    • Kollega says:

      What i really wonder about is who would call their company “OmegaCo”. It’s like they deliberately tried to pick something as ominous as possible.

  5. WinTurkey says:

    That better not be Morgan Freeman’s voice, fuck I don’t want thim associated with this mess of a game.

  6. fenrif says:

    EA is a terrible company that treats it’s customers like crap and behaves awfully constantly. Can you not boycott coverage of them, too?

    • GernauMorat says:

      Agreed

    • Noviere says:

      Oh goody… Is this what we have to look forward to for the next couple of weeks? Zzzzzzzzz

      • fenrif says:

        No honestly, if boycotting coverage on things is an option, then why not apply that to EA? They are as worthey of a boycott as anything else, arguably more so due to the way they pushed certain buisness practices in the industry and their habit of releasing high-profile marketing-heavy broken games. They were voted the worst comany in America twice! Which obviously is a little silly… But it does show just how many people think their buisness practices are awfull. They’ve treated their employees terribly too. And they’ve killed some one the most beloved studios in gaming history, while crapping up large swathes of cherished gaming franchises.

        I’m honestly curious, and I’m giving you the benefit of the doubt to actually engage with what I’m saying rather than just make a snarky comment and dismiss it out of hand in an attempt to look cool without saying anything of substance
        .

        • Gap Gen says:

          I think it’s worth covering when they do bad things. Besides, I’m not sure there’s a 1:1 equivalence between attending PAX and reviewing EA products. If anything, it’s more important to cover EA products from a consumer perspective if they regularly don’t work to avoid people buying defective software.

          • fenrif says:

            But couldn’t that same arguement be applied to PAX?

          • cpt_freakout says:

            Fenrif – you should head to the new post on PAX. In any case, no, it’s not the same, because PAX are not game producers or publishers, while EA is.

          • SuicideKing says:

            Well, until PAX publishes the next Medal of Hono(u)r, no.

          • Gap Gen says:

            Firstly, I don’t think RPS has a moral issue with EA to the point where it refuses to associate itself with the organisation. Secondly, RPS reviews EA products, and reviews don’t necessarily associate the publication with what they’re reviewing. For previews and press release reprints, perhaps that’s different, since they tend to simply say “look what’s coming out soon”, but again see the first point.

            But sure, the recent PAX post discusses the issue in more detail.

        • Noviere says:

          In my defense, I assumed your post was just the typical “I can’t let go” snark that gets dragged into every comment thread following RPS writing something that’s deemed to be controversial. See: every subsequent comment thread following a “social justice” post on RPS.

          So.. uhh. Sorry for assuming you were just being a dick. :)

        • MadTinkerer says:

          There is definitely a double standard being applied. One for the convention of a currently-unpopular-because-of-misunderstandings-and-rumors pair of comic writers, and one for the fucks who made PvZ2 into iOSF2P.

          EDIT: I say cover them both. Because JOURNALISM. But that would involve placing actual standards over emotional knee-jerk reactions.

          • airmikee99 says:

            Right, because social equality is the same thing as an economic decision for a video game.

            Your priorities are fucked.

          • Grygus says:

            I might argue that ruining actual families’ lives directly with their horrendous treatment of employees might be more objectionable than some ignorant Twitter posts, but honestly I don’t want to get into this.

    • Panda Powered says:

      After the Humble EA Bundle they are at least forgiven for Bullfrog and Westwood right?

      • MadTinkerer says:

        No, because PVZ2 iOSF2P.

        EA is a complicated company. I know for a fact there are decent people working there. But then they keep fucking up franchises and acting as if they’re reacting to “the market” telling them they don’t want the franchises at all instead of what “the market” is really saying which is “STOP TRYING TO TURN DEAD SPACE INTO MASS EFFECT” and “HOW ABOUT AN ACTUAL ULTIMA GAME INSTEAD OF FACEBOOK BULLSHIT WITH AN ULTIMA LOGO PASTED ON.” and “SO MANY AWESOME SIMS GAMES HOW DID SIMS 3 AND DRAGON AGE 2 COME FROM THE SAME COMPANY” and such.

        • Grygus says:

          Dragon Age 2 was very disappointing if you compare it to a completed game, but if you consider it a game that was pushed out the door several months early, it’s a damned nice beta.

  7. Noviere says:

    The always-online thing was never my issue with SimCity — while it was certainly a pain shortly after release, it eventually stopped being a game-crippling problem for me. The real problem, IMO, is that playing it is just a shallow experience and the maps are way too fucking small.

  8. Cryptoshrimp says:

    This just makes me desperately want a complete version of the SimCity 4 mod SimMars, as it basically does this but cheaper?

  9. c-Row says:

    “Your Way”? Sim City sure ain’t.

  10. Seiniyta says:

    Did Nathan Grayson play SimCity as of late or did he just spout out populist bullshit? Aside bigger cities and the always online crap I find the game personally quite enjoyable right now. After 7 major patches they did improve the game a lot. Though you definitly need to start with a new city if you haven’t played for a long while to be sure the renmants of the old bugs are gone when you play.

    I love cyberpunk, especially the dark buildings look quite appealing to me. I hope the expansion won’t have as many bugs as the core game had though.

    • SuicideKing says:

      “Did Nathan Grayson play SimCity as of late or did he just spout out populist bullshit?”

      Wow you need a patch to calm your panties or what?

      • Seiniyta says:

        He said “Simcity isn’t very good yet’ I wonder if he actually played it recently or just is like I said before just repeating what so many love to repeat like sheep. If he did play it recently and still doesn’t like it. FINE.

        If his reasoning is just because of the online only and small cities without having even played it recently that’s bullshit and is just as dishonest as many of Maxis’s claims about SimCity in the past.

        • sockdemon says:

          Hey cool! I play Simcity(2013) and I completely agree….. With Nathan….. You see aside from the tiny mapsize (mentioned in the article) there are still many issues SENTANCE ENDED WITH CAPITALS.

          It’s still a tremendously shallow game, the whole reason the maps are small and the game online only was (meant) to be fostering online play. Well, that still doesn’t really work, you still have to make every city self contained (to an extent). People can paint their roads in every shape that exists, all the cities still look the same. Stupid annoyances still plague that game throughout, check out, well… Every forum on the subject. The only reason ANY positively is mentioned in relation to that miserable game, is because most people who bought it have moved on. This leaves only the fanatic apologists…. Glad you enjoy the game. Don’t dismiss everyone as “sheep” because they have a different opinion to you. Your taste has been altered by 6 bad to lackluster patches and one that fixed <10% of the present issues…. Be a cool indivdual and give your money to EA. (Being patronised ain't fun is it)

    • airmikee99 says:

      “Aside bigger cities and the always online crap”

      So you identify the two biggest reasons certain people refuse to play the game, and then wonder why people don’t want to play the game?

      Have you not read the comments on the many Sim City stories here on RPS to see just how many people have avoided the game because of the two reasons you identified?

      It’s not just ‘populist bullshit’, it’s actually ‘the opinion of quite a few people’. If you don’t share that opinion, good for you, but that doesn’t mean those that do hold that opinion are just holding ‘populist bullshit’.

      • Talksintext says:

        I get the odd feeling some people don’t know what “populist” means exactly…

        Populist implies that many people agree, because if they didn’t, it wouldn’t be popular.

        Which is to say that if many people agree with something, claiming it’s “populist” in and of itself doesn’t really help your (Seiniyta) counter-”widely held opinion” stance. It just means that maybe you need to make more of an effort than simply calling the other side “popular”, because that’s always such an excellent and effective strategy…

    • aepervius says:

      Ohhhh ! I am game !

      So did they correct the following :
      1) the horrid traffic algorithm (yes I lived thru the first 2 patch on that so I am speaking after patch 3). Is snake city STILL the most efficient way to lay road ?
      2) the fact simcity people don’t really live somewhere, they jsut go to the first available house, and then the first available job ?
      3) the fact that if you know fuck all anybody youa re stuck with switching a lot between city , or make inneficient self suffisent city
      4) the fact that the interraction between city are anyway dumbed down as hell and just a matrix of number rather than real interraction ?

      Please do enlighten us.

  11. cpt_freakout says:

    Oh man, now I need to play SC4.

  12. SuicideKing says:

    Apparently they screwed up the Mac release a few weeks ago, too.

  13. airmikee99 says:

    I’m still quite content with Sim City 4, Cities XL Platinum, Tropico 4, and hell, even Pharoah from 1999 still works beautifully, and none of them require me to be online or to spend more money to upgrade my cities as I go. I’m really looking forward to Banished, which should give me a nice plethora of city building games. Maybe by the time Sim City 6 is ready EA will pull their heads from their collective asses, but I’m not counting on it.

  14. RedViv says:

    Well, I wanted a cyberpunk city sim. Guess I shouldn’t have used the cheap jerkass genie ticket for that.

  15. chiablo says:

    Something tells me that nobody is going to buy this.

  16. Synesthesia says:

    Hahahahahahahah!

    No.

  17. pilouuuu says:

    Dystopic future is always on-line

  18. JoeX111 says:

    Maybe efforts like The Silence would work better if RPS would stop feeding into the traditional hype machine and instead hammer on these issues we want answers for. Just a thought.

    http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2013/08/19/the-silence-an-update/#more-164639

  19. mygaffer says:

    If they would strip the always online DRM out of it I would buy it. That is despite my trying to avoid EA games whenever possible.