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antwob

This game isn't really that bad

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I had been following this site for a few years being a big fan of SimCity 4, and all the news of SimCity 2013's failures has bought me back with interest (I've found it quite entertaining to read). Despite all the bad reviews I decided to give the game a shot myself. Here is what I've found

 

1) Installation was a bit of pain (but this wasn't EA's fault). After I downloaded the initial 200MB file, amazingly my ISP DNS servers went down and I couldn't continue updating. Origin wasn't particularly helpful with the error message it gave me. Eventually I worked it out by changing my DNS settings to the Google DNS servers and it worked. I then left it to it for about 2 hours to update and then the game was ready.

 

2) I had no server connectivity problems, I connected to the nearest server in Eastern Europe. It was a Sunday afternoon, and I was expecting it to be busy. I was quite surprised I got in without issues.

 

3) The tutorial was ok, it had been a while since I'd play SimCity, so a tour of the interface was welcome. My initial impression was that the graphics looked very cartoony, especially since I was used to CitiesXL. But it ran so much faster and smoother than CitiesXL. I soon discovered the filters and got it looking quite nice.

 

4) I have to agree with everyone, the city sizes are so damn small. It took me about 5 hours to fill the city, as the gameplay runs very slowly (I believed they removed the 4x speed setting). After that, I upgraded some of my buildings, dealt with power issues and tried to squeeze any remaining space out. I couldn't get my population past 20,000, and it would jump around quite sporadically from 16,000 to around 20,000 for no apparent reason. I have no idea how to continue and get the population bigger and force all the small buildings to become highrises (Only very few did). I'm guessing I need to expand my region out instead.

 

5) My city had some traffic problems. In some instances I noticed the fire engine couldn't get out until I added a second garage on the nearby highway. But overall, it wasn't any worse or better than I remember SC4's traffic issues.

 

6) I found the zoning tool quite buggy. Sometimes it wouldn't fill out the zones along the road correctly, and the industrial zones would leave bits of buildings around which couldn't be deleted if I wanted to rezone. Also, the recyling center suddenly stopped working for some reason and never functioned again :/

 

7) The DRM/Always online problem didn't really bother me once I had the game installed. I would have liked to played the game next week on my long-haul flight. But besides no internet on the plane, my battery wouldn't last more than an hour anyway. DRM is a necessary evil, and it isn't going away anytime soon. I have to shut up and accept it, since no amount of moaning from users seems to be changing their minds.

 

8. The multiplayer option looks interesting, but is something I don't care much for. I wonder how many of the users are actual true fans of the series, or just there for a bit of fun and blow each others towns up.

 

However, I found the game quite challenging due to the small size, and micromanagement. The slow speed of the game means you have to be careful with your money. I really did enjoy the game though and will watch with interest as Maxis patch/fix it and hopefully make the maps bigger. I still feel I have a lot of learning to do to get better cities (without resorting to Sandbox/Cheat modes) and will certainly be playing the game more.

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While I agree largely to what you say, it´s not a bad game, I have found that I have to force myself to play it.

 

Ordinarily I tend to ponder about my cities during work and plan magnificent and efficient layouts, not with this one though.

It´s very pretty and I love many of the details, but when it comes down to it, it´s just not that much fun for me.

 

I have resumed my mega-project "the hollow earth" in Dwarf fortress and will probably try SC2013 again when they have released service pack 1.

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One of the things I really hope they bring back and allow is mod support. Some of the mods for SimCity 4 really changed the game. Although logically, being an online only game with a store, I don't see this happening. Plus I'm not sure how it would work if you had a public region with mods installed, and someone connected who didn't have the same mod.

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This is slightly O/T, but I couldn't hold back:

 

DRM a necessary evil? You have to accept it because no amount of moaning by the users will change it?

 

Small wonder! What do you think they give about anyone's moaning after they have the money in their pockets? Moaning after buying anyway will never be a means of protest that's likely to yield any success. Neither is moaning before buying - and then buying anway.

 

Most users are actually quite ready to be fenced into "golden cage" business models like livestock, and a few bleats before or after the gate has shut won't change anything as long as they all trot in the desired direction.

 

If you want to change anything, you need to hit where it hurts - and in case of businesses, the wallet is the soft spot. Everything else is just hot air.

 

 

Sorry about the rant and no offense intended. This DRM stuff just frustrates me sometimes.

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I'm no fan of DRM, but I really don't see the problem here with SimCity. They designed the game to be a multiplayer game, every aspect of it screams multiplayer. So, is it that weird that the game wants you to be online? No, of course its not weird, just like its not weird that you have to be online in order to play World of Warcraft. Its the nature of the game. The whole DRM aspect of the always online part is grossly overstated. 

 

That aside, I agree with the OP. Its a good game, there are a few problems here and there but I expect that a patch will fix that. 

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The city tiles are to damn small! (Should be a meme!) Personally always on DRM doesn't bother me either, I have broadband, always on internet connection isn't an issue unless you still have dialup. I think trading seems to be something that could potentially have me coming back for more in a multiplayer scenario. Being able to set up corporations, have them produce goods at differing efficiency levels and selling them on an open world market seems like a killer idea! (Maybe off topic but its vaguely related to the multiplayer stuff).

 

 

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Small wonder! What do you think they give about anyone's moaning after they have the money in their pockets? Moaning after buying anyway will never be a means of protest that's likely to yield any success. Neither is moaning before buying - and then buying anway.

 

I agree, people are moaning about it (including myself) and then we have either bought it already or buy it anyway. It didn't bother me too much in this instance because the game doesn't seem to have much replay value like SC4 does. True, I will probably play it a few more times and then move on and get bored, pretty much like I did with Societies.

 

If anything, all the bad press this game has had over the past few days has probably helped it more. Like I said, it seems no amount of moaning from users or members of the press is stopping people downloading the game anyway. So they've already won.

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Yeah, and besides the uproar was not predominantly because the game relies on DRM. It was mostly because the DRM that the game reiies on didn't work. Paint the bars of the cage nice and shiny, make the cage door swing shut without annoying creaks or rattles, and people will actually love it and even start spreading nonsense like "you need DRM to make a game work". *sigh*

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It's just how people have become, Wrecks. People like you and I are a dying breed and the masses have come to accept the Big Brother Orwellian world that has slowly crept upon civilization.

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The more you play the more and more you realise the game is a mess and more cracks begin to show. The simulation makes no sense. This game needed a lot of fixing. Already gave up playing it tbh. Some of the design decisions do not make any sense.

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 2) I had no server connectivity problems, I connected to the nearest server in Eastern Europe. It was a Sunday afternoon, and I was expecting it to be busy. I was quite surprised I got in without issues.

 

Just so you know, all the servers are located in the same location, they're just named the way that they are because that's what Maxis decided to do to name them instead of doing something creative like naming them after famous landmarks or something like that.  So feel free to play on whatever server you can get on, they're all in the same locale.

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The more you play the more and more you realise the game is a mess and more cracks begin to show. The simulation makes no sense. This game needed a lot of fixing. Already gave up playing it tbh. Some of the design decisions do not make any sense.

Yeah, the population was one of those. It kept jumping round by huge numbers for no apparent reason and confused me. The demand indicators didn't seem to make much sense. Also, I sent money as a gift from one of my other cities and I never received it. The game is riddled with bugs and things that would work so much better offline. I can accept that bugs happen, as long as they fix it and don't try sugar-coat it or say it's a feature. I'm sure given time it COULD become a far better game, but whether EA/Maxis choose to do so is another story

 

 2) I had no server connectivity problems, I connected to the nearest server in Eastern Europe. It was a Sunday afternoon, and I was expecting it to be busy. I was quite surprised I got in without issues.

 

Just so you know, all the servers are located in the same location, they're just named the way that they are because that's what Maxis decided to do to name them instead of doing something creative like naming them after famous landmarks or something like that.  So feel free to play on whatever server you can get on, they're all in the same locale.

Thanks for the info. I've heard that if I choose another server, the city either goes missing or doesn't sync properly.

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I agree, the game isn't bad at all. Clearly it needed another round of polishing before it was released, but it isn't horrifically broken by any means. The fact that I've been playing it every free minute I get for the past week says it all.

 

Does it need improvement? Yes.

 

Am I enjoying it regardless? Also yes.

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It's just how people have become, Wrecks. People like you and I are a dying breed and the masses have come to accept the Big Brother Orwellian world that has slowly crept upon civilization.

Well, to be fair it's easy for me and by far no heroic deed of rebellion. If I were between 14 and 20, with lots of free time, and always hungry for new games, it would be difficult. However, what non-RL free time I have left is occupied by game modding, an occasional session with an old game I have grown fond of, and watching Let's Play vids of stuff I find interesting enough to watch, but not interesting enough to play for myself... likewise, I'm under no kind of peer pressure, e.g. from classmates who have all played the new game everybody is talking about (except for me). In such a situation, it takes some self-control to say "No, I won't buy because of DRM" - and some guts to defend that position against others who will regard you as some kind of nutter... in my situation, it doesn't.

 

The only game that really made me regret my position against DRM so far has been Earth 2160. I would have liked to check that out because I loved Earth 2150 so much.

 

OK, I guess that's about enough off-topic now - sorry, folks. :lol:

 

 

To give this post at least a semblance of on-topicness, I don't necessarily think that SC2013 is bad as a computer game. However, I think it is bad (or at least not interesting) as a SimCity game.

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Hi,

 

I had been following this site for a few years being a big fan of SimCity 4, and all the news of SimCity 2013's failures has bought me back with interest (I've found it quite entertaining to read). Despite all the bad reviews I decided to give the game a shot myself. Here is what I've found

 

1) Installation was a bit of pain (but this wasn't EA's fault). After I downloaded the initial 200MB file, amazingly my ISP DNS servers went down and I couldn't continue updating. Origin wasn't particularly helpful with the error message it gave me. Eventually I worked it out by changing my DNS settings to the Google DNS servers and it worked. I then left it to it for about 2 hours to update and then the game was ready.

 

2) I had no server connectivity problems, I connected to the nearest server in Eastern Europe. It was a Sunday afternoon, and I was expecting it to be busy. I was quite surprised I got in without issues.

 

3) The tutorial was ok, it had been a while since I'd play SimCity, so a tour of the interface was welcome. My initial impression was that the graphics looked very cartoony, especially since I was used to CitiesXL. But it ran so much faster and smoother than CitiesXL. I soon discovered the filters and got it looking quite nice.

 

4) I have to agree with everyone, the city sizes are so damn small. It took me about 5 hours to fill the city, as the gameplay runs very slowly (I believed they removed the 4x speed setting). After that, I upgraded some of my buildings, dealt with power issues and tried to squeeze any remaining space out. I couldn't get my population past 20,000, and it would jump around quite sporadically from 16,000 to around 20,000 for no apparent reason. I have no idea how to continue and get the population bigger and force all the small buildings to become highrises (Only very few did). I'm guessing I need to expand my region out instead.

 

5) My city had some traffic problems. In some instances I noticed the fire engine couldn't get out until I added a second garage on the nearby highway. But overall, it wasn't any worse or better than I remember SC4's traffic issues.

 

6) I found the zoning tool quite buggy. Sometimes it wouldn't fill out the zones along the road correctly, and the industrial zones would leave bits of buildings around which couldn't be deleted if I wanted to rezone. Also, the recyling center suddenly stopped working for some reason and never functioned again :/

 

7) The DRM/Always online problem didn't really bother me once I had the game installed. I would have liked to played the game next week on my long-haul flight. But besides no internet on the plane, my battery wouldn't last more than an hour anyway. DRM is a necessary evil, and it isn't going away anytime soon. I have to shut up and accept it, since no amount of moaning from users seems to be changing their minds.

 

8. The multiplayer option looks interesting, but is something I don't care much for. I wonder how many of the users are actual true fans of the series, or just there for a bit of fun and blow each others towns up.

 

However, I found the game quite challenging due to the small size, and micromanagement. The slow speed of the game means you have to be careful with your money. I really did enjoy the game though and will watch with interest as Maxis patch/fix it and hopefully make the maps bigger. I still feel I have a lot of learning to do to get better cities (without resorting to Sandbox/Cheat modes) and will certainly be playing the game more.

 

on 2) you mean yesterday?

 

on 4) have you heard of the fudged population function that's in there? I don't have the correct details at hand but something along the lines:

if population < 1000 then show population

if population > 1000 and < 10000 then show population*1,5

if population > 10000 then show population*3

and so on.

 

Thats really simply demonstrates the problem at hand here. It has nothing to do with "no apparent reason".

 

on 7) T Wrecks has said all what needs to be said, there.

 

If you like you can look further for the "traveling Salesman" Problem in relation to the agent system used in this iteration of SimCity.

 

For me it is clear that you won't get greater building areas unless they rewrite the whole underlying "simulation" engine.

 

greetings

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Don't be so sure that DRM is here and no amount of moaning will get rid of it. Have you heard of Ubisoft? all their PC games used to have always online DRM, but they removed it and have now seen sales increase. Why did they remove it? Because people whined about it :)

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4) I have to agree with everyone, the city sizes are so damn small. It took me about 5 hours to fill the city, as the gameplay runs very slowly (I believed they removed the 4x speed setting). After that, I upgraded some of my buildings, dealt with power issues and tried to squeeze any remaining space out. I couldn't get my population past 20,000, and it would jump around quite sporadically from 16,000 to around 20,000 for no apparent reason. I have no idea how to continue and get the population bigger and force all the small buildings to become highrises (Only very few did). I'm guessing I need to expand my region out instead.

 

6) I found the zoning tool quite buggy. Sometimes it wouldn't fill out the zones along the road correctly, and the industrial zones would leave bits of buildings around which couldn't be deleted if I wanted to rezone. Also, the recyling center suddenly stopped working for some reason and never functioned again :/

 

4) Not easy to find the trick if you haven't read around the meaningful threads, and not the hateful threads. 

You need one thing to get bigger buildings. Happiness. This comes with Commerce, and parks. You also need to "zone" the people. Virtually. 

Plug only $ parks where you want only low earners. $$ parks where you need only med earners and $$$ parks where you need your rich people. 

 

When they are happy (80%+) and having low the residential tax to 7% you will see they will start building bigger buildings, and raising the population. 

Please consider the roads allowed density 

 

Also you need to take care of commuting times. In 24h a household should be able to commute to work, shops & parks. 

 

6) If you plan to get recycling centre, you need the collecting vehicles fully upgraded, with nearby depot that has all the upgrades. Also the normal garbage site should not have more than 2-3 trucks. 

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Don't be so sure that DRM is here and no amount of moaning will get rid of it. Have you heard of Ubisoft? all their PC games used to have always online DRM, but they removed it and have now seen sales increase. Why did they remove it? Because people whined about it :)

They aren't giving up or changing their minds about this. You only need to read the comments on Lucy's post she made the other day to see how angry people are, and how it's just brushed to one side as if "I had a vision, I don't care what you think". Simcity is a popular franchise with a lot of fans, and if we want to play this game then we are either forced to take it or leave it. It will turn ugly for people and them when they switch the servers off, and maybe then we'll see a patch released to remove it.

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Don't be so sure that DRM is here and no amount of moaning will get rid of it. Have you heard of Ubisoft? all their PC games used to have always online DRM, but they removed it and have now seen sales increase. Why did they remove it? Because people whined about it :)

They aren't giving up or changing their minds about this. You only need to read the comments on Lucy's post she made the other day to see how angry people are, and how it's just brushed to one side as if "I had a vision, I don't care what you think". Simcity is a popular franchise with a lot of fans, and if we want to play this game then we are either forced to take it or leave it. It will turn ugly for people and them when they switch the servers off, and maybe then we'll see a patch released to remove it.

 

That was just PR speak, Ubisoft did exactly the same thing, bottom line if DRM hurts sales more than it stops piracy the publishers will remove it. The customers have the power here, not the corporations.

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First off I have had a good time playing the game.  And I do believe many of the issues will be solved with time.

 

The problem for me is not building the city, the problems shows if I stick around the city. Improve it, get it to grow and place mass transit. Boom it explodes in your face. Now I do like it be challenging, and to have a stable city that lasts over time I have found it crucial to balance unemployment and unsold goods, to prevent visits from neighboring cities. Make each city stand on its own.

 

The last city I made, 3 times in a row rolled back to a previous save. Weird thing is, some changes are there others not. The game saves in pieces over time and not all at once as far as I can tell.

 

To remove the lots that cant be demolished you can remove the attached road, and rezone. Don't think its a bug actually, think it was by design.

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