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Bibor_Kiraly

Fixing your city: reading the charts

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Man I love your topic... you explained loads of things I didn't know. But can you take away some of my doubts?

 

The second mistake is to zone too much commercial and to zone low-density commercial away from the residential areas. Mix commercial and residential together. A good ratio is 1 block of commercial for every 3 residential ones.

 

To sum up, low density zoning should have a RCI ratio of roughly 6:2:1.

 

At the early game I usually zoned a lot of residential, and commercial/industry by 1:1 ... I got a nice city with 10.000+ income but then 'unfilled jobs' always kill me: that means shops and industries don't have enought workers and I get commuting ones from neighbours that increase my traffic. What to do if I want to avoid this problem? Zoning one industrial per five residential will keep my 'unfilled jobs' parameter ok? And what about the shops goods requests? With so few induestries will you have enought goods for your shops?

 

t's a good idea to separate the $, $$ and $$$ neighbourhoods, for several reasons. It's quite easy to do. Dedicate a part of your map for, say, $$$ residents. Plant the City Hall there, plant some $$$ parks and wait for the zone desirability map to turn dark blue in that part of the map.  Then zone commercial and residential. See wealthy sims move in. Repeat the procedure for $$ neighbourhoods (make sure you plop the proper $$ parks).

 

When you do this? It's hazardous to do in the early game since if you get istantly $$ and $$$ (almost impossible without services i know)  you won't be able to give them a work in shops / industries or not?

When I start a new city I build dirty roads and keep low-density $ residential zones untill my industries are full of people; when they starts to run up of workers I try to increase their density to store more sims as possible ... am I right?

And last, since you advise us to separate neighbourhoods I guess we'll have a $ RC district, a $$ RC one and a $$$ RC one? I guess yes otherwise you wouldn't have buyers of the same wealth or not?

 

The trick to fixing traffic congestion, ludicrous utility expenses and almost everyhing else in the game that's not a bug is to properly implement the proper RCI ratio and to separate the social classes. You don't want your sims to commute too much, you want them to be able to find jobs and entertainment in the city they live. Keep the "demand" slightly higher from your supply. Not by much, but avoid being at 0, else you will see an influx of workers and shoppers from other cities (again, jamming your city).


Once you master this on low-density, move up to medium density. Once you master it on medium, move to high.

 

You don't speak about mass-transit means: don't you use them? I love streetcars since are easy to plops but really expensive; on the other hand busses are quite cheap but I really didn't understand how they works (park and ride and bus terminal more over). If you have a too high demand and, let's say, you can't zone nomore since you filled your city how can you decrease it? Use taxes? But if you use taxes you'll surely reduce your demand but also make sims run away from your city or not?

And what you mean by "master" the density? Should I focus (in the early game) on a $ neighbour and focus on it (by parks/services/etc) untill I get skyscrapers and then go on another $ district and focus on it untill I get $$ skyscrapers?

 

- you need to plop only one type of parks

- you can educate social classes differently. $$$ are most interested in education. Meaning, among other things, you can position your recycling center closer to people that recycle more ($$ and $$$) and leave the traffic jam of the $ areas for the end of the recycling shift.

 

What you mean by "one type" of parks? I guess $ parks for $ district and so on right? And since I'm already here doing a lot of $%&^! questions: what's the difference between plazas and formal parks (since are the same $$$ wealth)?

Last question: you say to educate social classes differently. I used to place one school per kind (elementary, high, etc) in my city and place loads of bus stops. Do you say to plop them around the city? I mean... elementary in the $ district, highschool in the $$ one and university in the $$$ one?

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"All R" cities and "R and C only" cities are a myth. For some reason, some people seem to be fascinated by arbitrary high numbers. The fact is, these sorts of cities work only for a brief time before they collapse. Also, they grow only if these are the first and only cities in the region.

 

Have you actually tested this? Do the cities actually collapse with a mass exodus of people? Or do a lot of people leave and then more (different sims) come back in?

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  • Original Poster
  • Man I love your topic... you explained loads of things I didn't know. But can you take away some of my doubts?

     

    Uh, lots of questions. Here are the basic residence charts. LD/MD/HD=density, W=workers, S=shoppers

     

     

    Residential agent population:
    $LD: 4W 2S
    $$LD: 2W 1S
    $$$LD: ?
     
    $MD: 40W 20S
    $$MD: 20W 10S
    $$$MD: ?
     
    $HD: 400W 200S
    $$HD: 200W 100S
    $$$HD: 67W 32S
     
    Yes, population increases tenfold for each upgrade in density.
     
    Plant one low-density commercial zone. Check how many jobs and shopping slots it provides.
    Plant one industrial zone. Check out how many jobs it provides (substract the commercial jobs to get the figure).
     
    ***
     
    Sims go to work to get money so that they can "buy" happiness with that money from commercial or parks.
    Inudustry is good because it provides jobs without also wanting shoppers.
    Commercial is good because it provides both shopping and jobs.
     
    The logic is the following:
    Build enough commercial to fill your shopping needs. Check out how many jobs it provides in the process.
    Build industry or services to provide jobs for those that didn't find a job in the commercial.
     
    ***
     
    You will get $$ and $$$ jobs immediately. Every factory has at least 1 $$$ workplace. Same is true for services, City Hall etc. You will have a very early demand for these two wealth categories, although it will be a fraction of your $ demand. City hall itself generates $$$ land desirability around itself (dark blue on the desirability map overlay). Most "good" services (police, school etc.) generate at least $$ desirability. Want it or not, your residential zones adjacent to City Hall will be the beginning of your $$$ zone, you can't avoid it, except with creating high value land somewhere else.
     
    ****
     
    I use public transportation, but not not all sim wealth levels use same transportation. $$$ use boats, airports, cars. $$ use all type of transportation, $ use mostly public transportation (if available). No need to put a bus network in your $$$ area, because rich sims simply won't use them.
     
    ***
    By mastering the density I mean... higher level density increases your demand for utilities and strain on roads tenfold. 10x more water and power, 10x more injured and sick people... Transportation in a city with 500 agents (workers/shoppers) can be easily handled by 2-3 buses. Ten times more population means 20-30 more buses. Not only does this kill your traffic, but also expenses skyrocket. Mayors often end up in 3-5k negative hourly income for medium and 10-20k negative income once they switch densities. That's because different city densities don't work the same way. You need to adapt.
     
    ***
    Yes, park wealth levels. I'm still unsure what's the difference between plazas and formal parks. 
     
    ***
     
    By splitting education I mean that you plant school bus stops only where you want, in $$ and $$ at start. Just let $$ and $$$ sims get education at first. Spread your school bus coverage so that it collects a number of students you have money for. It obviously depends on your city population variety, but in a perfect equal spread of population, you would have a ratio of 1:3:7 ($$:$$:$$$). It's way easier to educate 4 sims than 11. You can always add schools for $ sims later. 

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  • ave you actually tested this? Do the cities actually collapse with a mass exodus of people? Or do a lot of people leave and then more (different sims) come back in?

     

     

    The first commercial or industrial building that you plant in another city will be swarmed by people from the R or RC city. God forbid you zone a larger industrial area. Once you return to the "pure R" city, everyone will flood the highway connection trying to find a job. And yes, it's tested. Same thing happens if you demolish your industrial and commercial zones in a "Normal" city. Stabilizing might take up to a month of in-game time.

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    Man I love your topic... you explained loads of things I didn't know. But can you take away some of my doubts?

     

    The second mistake is to zone too much commercial and to zone low-density commercial away from the residential areas. Mix commercial and residential together. A good ratio is 1 block of commercial for every 3 residential ones.

     

    To sum up, low density zoning should have a RCI ratio of roughly 6:2:1.

     

    At the early game I usually zoned a lot of residential, and commercial/industry by 1:1 ... I got a nice city with 10.000+ income but then 'unfilled jobs' always kill me: that means shops and industries don't have enought workers and I get commuting ones from neighbours that increase my traffic. What to do if I want to avoid this problem? Zoning one industrial per five residential will keep my 'unfilled jobs' parameter ok? And what about the shops goods requests? With so few induestries will you have enought goods for your shops?

     

    In my experience, I've found that playing the game slower and "curating" it's development helps keep this in check.  As op suggests, zoning 1 to 3 C to R is a pretty solid ratio.  When you build this slowly overtime as opposed to just making a huge grid and filling it right in with R, you can help yourself control it.

     

    The unfilled jobs is an interesting one.  What I've noticed is that as the higher density plants move in it causes a serious jobs disparity.  The jump from medium->high density industrial creates a HUGE amount of jobs.  I've actually demolished and dezoned some lower density industrial zones.  This will force the other factories to max out on employment and cut down some of the air pollution.  Additionally, it forces sims to travel to certain areas and perhaps alleviate traffic in some areas.

     

    Good post from the OP.  I think the RCI meter needs a redesign.  They are still applying SC4 visual demand principles to this game.  The population panel is far more telling of the economic status of your city.  More to that, I wish the unfilled jobs were broken down into C or I.  The RCI meter doesn't tell me this, it shows me that I is high but C is low, why would I be high when I have 8,000 unfilled jobs, is I high because I need to ship more freight? Who knows, bottom line is you can't trust the RCI meter like you did in previous games.

     

    Don't be afraid to demolish jobs or housing, though in most cases the problem is always unfilled jobs.  I think Maxis has created a game that is highly residential based.  I had another city (before it corrupted) with 190k pop and 35,000 unfilled jobs.  1/3 of the map was Industrial and there was a "downtown commercial center", this was the first city I made (thinking with SC4 mindset).  I demolished nearly 90% of my industrial and brought the jobs numbers in line more.

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    The logic is the following:
    Build enough commercial to fill your shopping needs

     

     

    Of all the great information you posted this is probably the best.  More to that with the way parks are setup, they can offset some of the unsatisfied shopping numbers, so with a city that's simultaneously zoning parks and commericlal you don't need to go all out with the commercial, one zone at a time until they fill up their density.

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  • Original Poster
  • Don't be afraid to demolish jobs or housing, though in most cases the problem is always unfilled jobs.  I think Maxis has created a game that is highly residential based.  I had another city (before it corrupted) with 190k pop and 35,000 unfilled jobs.  1/3 of the map was Industrial and there was a "downtown commercial center", this was the first city I made (thinking with SC4 mindset).  I demolished nearly 90% of my industrial and brought the jobs numbers in line more.

     

     

    Quite logical if you think about it. Residential housing is where sims "deposit" all their stuff - education, money, happiness, garbage, ... It's logical that there's a heavy emphasis on the R zones. I've noticed one high density factory can "consume" several high-density $R worth of population, As you said, I could remove most of my industrial zoning due to this.

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    I just bulldozed my entire city and starting from zero trying to follow your tips... I'll let you know how is going and if it won't be good I come to meet your cities riding a big flaming asteroid >: D

    Haha, that's a joke ;)

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    Nice thread! Just a quick comment on the RCI meter.

     

    The I bar is based on how many "unfulfilled freight orders" you have, which is meaningless. I just use I as the OP says, to absorb any extra employment after supplying enough C to fulfill shopping demand,

     

    The C bar is based on the number of unsatisfied shoppers.

     

    The R bar is based on the number of unfilled jobs.

     

    So the RCI bar isn't totally useless (well, apart from I).

     

     

     

    After the latest patch came out with the traffic fix I decided to build a grid city to push it to the limit but instead I find myself painstaking trying to balance RCI by upgrading the density of buildings one at at time etc. It's much more fun!

     

    PROTIP - Plan for your R$$$ residents from the start! I waited until I have circa 300 unfilled R$$$ jobs thinking that 300 isn't a big number, but when you only get 1 worker per low density R$$$ household it really is! So now I'm faced with the decision of placing 300 low density houses (and building the parks to increase the land value to make them $$$), or build only a few and wait patiently for them to upgrade.

     

     

     

    EDIT - QUESTION: Have you been running into any happiness problems in the residential areas? I find that I can have 100% employment amongst my sims, and 100% shopper satisfaction, but still have homes that say "We need money!" or "Where's the shopping in this town?". It's not a traffic issue because my traffic is pretty light.

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    EDIT - QUESTION: Have you been running into any happiness problems in the residential areas? I find that I can have 100% employment amongst my sims, and 100% shopper satisfaction, but still have homes that say "We need money!" or "Where's the shopping in this town?". It's not a traffic issue because my traffic is pretty light.

     

    Sometimes I have that problem in small localized areas and it's best to ignore it, either the building becomes abandoned and you demolish it or eventually the sims will find a job or a place to shop.

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    After the latest patch came out with the traffic fix I decided to build a grid city to push it to the limit but instead I find myself painstaking trying to balance RCI by upgrading the density of buildings one at at time etc. It's much more fun!

     

    EDIT - QUESTION: Have you been running into any happiness problems in the residential areas? I find that I can have 100% employment amongst my sims, and 100% shopper satisfaction, but still have homes that say "We need money!" or "Where's the shopping in this town?". It's not a traffic issue because my traffic is pretty light.

     

    I'm very interested in knowing how well you do with this.  Keeping workers vs jobs and commerical vs shoppers in balance.  I had one of my cities in disarray (well kinda), which prompted me to spend about 6-7 hours trying to balance things out.   Its better but still not in balance yet.  A work in progress.

     

    I don't have any answers for you.  I am dealing with the same problems.  The closer you get in getting everything balanced, I get the same comments that we need money and shopping in this town.   I couldn't figure it out myself, but I'm going to put more time into it.   It may be some sort of default message the game kicks out if there isn't any expected growth, or wiggle room (I'm guessing).    Perhaps if the sims couldn't find shopping right away, then found it later on.   Again I don't know.    If you figure this out, please let us know!

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    I'm very interested in knowing how well you do with this.  Keeping workers vs jobs and commerical vs shoppers in balance.  I had one of my cities in disarray (well kinda), which prompted me to spend about 6-7 hours trying to balance things out.   Its better but still not in balance yet.  A work in progress.

     

    I don't have any answers for you.  I am dealing with the same problems.  The closer you get in getting everything balanced, I get the same comments that we need money and shopping in this town.   I couldn't figure it out myself, but I'm going to put more time into it.   It may be some sort of default message the game kicks out if there isn't any expected growth, or wiggle room (I'm guessing).    Perhaps if the sims couldn't find shopping right away, then found it later on.   Again I don't know.    If you figure this out, please let us know!

     

    I'd say that you're doing exactly that.  I obviously wasn't a developer on the game, but after a few weeks with it I'm starting to see that the decision was more about zoning and rezoning, rather than zoning and upgrading as it was in SC4.  I haven't done any specializations because from the looks of it, most people have presented it to me as a sort of "ez mode", so I've been running it off of strictly tax income and when the city gets large enough; exporting alloys/plastics.

     

    I can say with confidence that the closer you get to minimal unfilled jobs the more your economy hums.  Keep at it.  

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    EDIT - QUESTION: Have you been running into any happiness problems in the residential areas? I find that I can have 100% employment amongst my sims, and 100% shopper satisfaction, but still have homes that say "We need money!" or "Where's the shopping in this town?". It's not a traffic issue because my traffic is pretty light.

     

     

    As OP said, the RCI is misleading.  However, so is the "population" chart.  That chart only shows you the maximum number of workers, the maximum number of jobs, the maximum number of shoppers, and the maximum number of goods.  Then the chart simply does the subtraction.  This chart does NOT show how many sims are actually making it to work, or how many sims are actually shopping.  The only way to get a good feel for this is to look at the population data layer (the one with 3 people as the icon).  If you have "We need money", make sure people in those homes are actually getting to work.  There might be enough jobs and no traffic, but the jobs are located too far away for them to get to work.  Same with shopping.  There may be enough goods, but the goods they need are too far away.

     

    Here is a video describing this:  (its not mine, btw.  This guy makes great SimCity videos.  Browse his channel.  You'll be a better player for watching them.)

     

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    "All R" cities and "R and C only" cities are a myth. For some reason, some people seem to be fascinated by arbitrary high numbers. The fact is, these sorts of cities work only for a brief time before they collapse. Also, they grow only if these are the first and only cities in the region.

     

    Have you actually tested this? Do the cities actually collapse with a mass exodus of people? Or do a lot of people leave and then more (different sims) come back in?

     

    You can keep bulldozing residential and get new sims to cycle in, but you hit a cap in density at that point. Eventually, happiness falls and density falls. You can stretch out the decline for a long time, of course, if you're just looking to prove a point.

     

    Most people are looking for growing, long-term sustainable cities that don't require constant micromanagement of a specific facet. Likewise, you can grow your city far, far beyond its traffic congestion levels by strategically bulldozing a segment of your main thoroughfares at rush hour, forcing traffic to sidestreets they otherwise won't take, and then shuffling traffic back to thoroughfares to alleviate stress on the sidestreets (think... Tower Defense traffic management.) It's viable with regular player intervention, though it doesn't meet the general goal of most players, who want a city that successfully simulates, rather than one which can be kept sustainable by godlike intervention.

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    EDIT - QUESTION: Have you been running into any happiness problems in the residential areas? I find that I can have 100% employment amongst my sims, and 100% shopper satisfaction, but still have homes that say "We need money!" or "Where's the shopping in this town?". It's not a traffic issue because my traffic is pretty light.

     

     

    As OP said, the RCI is misleading.  However, so is the "population" chart.  That chart only shows you the maximum number of workers, the maximum number of jobs, the maximum number of shoppers, and the maximum number of goods.  Then the chart simply does the subtraction.  This chart does NOT show how many sims are actually making it to work, or how many sims are actually shopping.  The only way to get a good feel for this is to look at the population data layer (the one with 3 people as the icon).  If you have "We need money", make sure people in those homes are actually getting to work.  There might be enough jobs and no traffic, but the jobs are located too far away for them to get to work.  Same with shopping.  There may be enough goods, but the goods they need are too far away.

     

    Here is a video describing this:  (its not mine, btw.  This guy makes great SimCity videos.  Browse his channel.  You'll be a better player for watching them.)

     

    *snip* video for size

     

    Thanks! That guy's channel is really good. Already learned a lot from just watching one of them!

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    sorry OP, but all RC cities are definitely not a myth or some trick that inevitably collapses. I've never tried an all-RC region, but if I have some industry in a neighbour city its not hard at all to make a sustainable all-RC city. And it doesn't require any sort of strategic bulldozing.

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    sorry OP, but all RC cities are definitely not a myth or some trick that inevitably collapses. I've never tried an all-RC region, but if I have some industry in a neighbour city its not hard at all to make a sustainable all-RC city. And it doesn't require any sort of strategic bulldozing.

     

    I'll agree that the they aren't a myth, but their existence I would say almost borders on the line of exploitation.  I'm talking about the ones that have zero C or I in the region.  The All-R cities are done basically by massive park systems because parks satisfy happiness and shopping which seems to outmatch concerns about unemployment.  Theoretically they shouldn't exist in the game but the way Maxis has scripted the game, it's what I would consider the epitome of everything that's been so goofy about this game.

     

    Personally I've found city-to-city commuting is extremely buggy and inconsistent.  My main city started running into under-employment, so I decided to create a dorm city of commuters next to it, a staple strategy of SC4 regional play.  I extended the avenue entrance straight out from the offramp, and created 4 blocks of low-wealth high density residential.  Eligible workers clocked in around 1,000 (city pop was about 7ish).  At the end of the avenue I created a rail station and ran the railroad tracks nearby, and created a regional bus depot across the street.  Even with significant inter-regional travel.  While a small number did commute next door, well over 80% of my sims preferred to remain unemployed.

     

    Point is I think if you get a few local high density industry factories, you can fill out the rest of your high density residential needs with high density commercial.

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    Thanks for the info.  I had figured much of this out already but was starting to become convinced that it is not possible to balance the RCI (I had already learned to ignore the chart and rely on detail data).  While doing this I noticed something that had escaped my notice earlier.  My city with a population of 110,000 people had about 10-11k workers total.  Not jobs but actual workers.  Is this why we are so R heavy in our town?  Because only 10% of teh resident actually work?

     

    Also, Industry needs shops to ship goods to but do shops need shipments of goods?  I tend to have very high unfilled jobs values + high unsatisfied customers + high unsatisfied freight shipments.  Taken as a whole that is very contradictory unless because of the imbalance, I don't have enough workers to keep my industry creating goods (lots of closed, need workers comments) and that leads to not enough goods for the commercial to sell leading to not enough commercial for my residents.  This seems to fit since adding additional C or I doesn't seem to fix the problem and maybe that is because i don't have enough workers to take advantage of the new zones.

     

    Just my thoughts and observations.

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    The second mistake is to zone too much commercial and to zone low-density commercial away from the residential areas. Mix commercial and residential together. A good ratio is 1 block of commercial for every 3 residential ones.

     

    To sum up, low density zoning should have a RCI ratio of roughly 6:2:1

     

    Sorry, this may sound like a really dumb question, but in this context what exactly is this a ratio of?  Is a "block" meant to be like just one single segment of a particular zone type when that you would lay down with a single mouse click?  Or is block meant more like when you make square road aligned to the grids and then zoning everything inside that area?  Or is the ratio a count of the actual constructed buildings of each type?

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  •  

    Sorry, this may sound like a really dumb question, but in this context what exactly is this a ratio of?  Is a "block" meant to be like just one single segment of a particular zone type when that you would lay down with a single mouse click?  Or is block meant more like when you make square road aligned to the grids and then zoning everything inside that area?  Or is the ratio a count of the actual constructed buildings of each type?

     

     

    Any of the above, but generally the amount of area you zone for a specific type. For every 6 residental buildings you want 2 commericial and 1 industrial.

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    "All R" cities and "R and C only" cities are a myth. For some reason, some people seem to be fascinated by arbitrary high numbers. The fact is, these sorts of cities work only for a brief time before they collapse. Also, they grow only if these are the first and only cities in the region.

     

    Have you actually tested this? Do the cities actually collapse with a mass exodus of people? Or do a lot of people leave and then more (different sims) come back in?

     

    Good point! If you want to test it, better hurry. The new update (2.0) states;

    • Tuning: Residential-only cities have failure state.

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    Sorry, this may sound like a really dumb question, but in this context what exactly is this a ratio of?  Is a "block" meant to be like just one single segment of a particular zone type when that you would lay down with a single mouse click?  Or is block meant more like when you make square road aligned to the grids and then zoning everything inside that area?  Or is the ratio a count of the actual constructed buildings of each type?

     

     

    Any of the above, but generally the amount of area you zone for a specific type. For every 6 residental buildings you want 2 commericial and 1 industrial.

     

     Probably another dumb question, but in following a ratio like this would a service ploppable (like say a wind power plant) substitute for the one industrial or should you try to stick to this ratio regardless of any other city services that are built?

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    What about transparent bars versus opaque ones?

     

    The loading game tip (or game manual, I think) mentions how the transparent colored RCI bar represents regional demand. [OPs] original description hints of no concern for the regional demand UNLESS of course the transparent bar describes a 'result' (rather than demand) of zones drawn.

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  •  Probably another dumb question, but in following a ratio like this would a service ploppable (like say a wind power plant) substitute for the one industrial or should you try to stick to this ratio regardless of any other city services that are built?

     

    On long term, you should. Larger utilities like sewage plants, large police stations and especially industries like the smelting plant or coal mine. These basically replace factories. For example, if I have oil, ore or coal, I build the initial 7 factories and then raze them when I have enough mines.

     

     

     

    What about transparent bars versus opaque ones?

     

    The loading game tip (or game manual, I think) mentions how the transparent colored RCI bar represents regional demand. [OPs] original description hints of no concern for the regional demand UNLESS of course the transparent bar describes a 'result' (rather than demand) of zones drawn.

     

    I don't look at RCI at all. I use the F2 charts to see if I have excess unemployed or too much unfilled jobs. Basically you're free to develop your city as you wish, without even looking at RCI, as long as you meet the demand for either population or jobs.

     

    In a nutshell, ignore the RCI bars as these are irrelevant.

     

    I presume Maxis initially developed and then simply "cut out" most of the hardcore features. These might return in some future "hardcore" patches. I hope.

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    This thread has changed the way I play the game. I started a new city last night, and played for about 5 hours, mostly on Cheetah speed, just to get up to about 60k population. That's a much slower pace than I am used to, but my city is solid, I would not be afraid to let it run unattended for a while. My approach was as follows:

    - I limited myself to about 1/2 of the available grid at first. I found that as I grew and added services, recycling, etc, I grew into the rest of the space.

    - Start with a small amount of residential (10-15 buildings), a windmill, water tower, and sewer pipe. 12% taxes to start with, I lower it as I go along.

    - After they move in, check unemployment and unsatisfied shopper numbers. Slowly add 2-3 commercial buildings at a time until things get in balance.

    - At this point I want to add a school, but I need $400/hr surplus revenue first. I don't have the tax income yet, so I slowly add more residential.

    - Check the unemployment and shopper statistics again and add more commercial to balance.

    - Once I have enough income, I plop the school and wait until the next day to check the numbers again. All the while looking at the population map, traffic flow, etc, and tweaking as necessary.

    - Decide on the next service I want to add, and SLOWLY increase population as necessary to get the tax revenue to pay for it. Balance shopping and employment with commercial zoning. You have to go slow, because it takes time for the zoning to have an impact on your statistics.

    - When I reach a point where shoppers are satisfied, but I still have unemployed workers, I add one industrial building and see where things stand after it is up and running. This adds jobs without creating unsold goods.

    - When I've spread out enough, I start increasing density rather than adding more zones. I increase one building at a time! First, dezone the street, then upgrade it. The buildings won't increase in density if they have no zoning. Then I add back the zoning for two buildings, which will combine into a higher density one. Check the numbers and adjust. I try to increase commercial buildings first, then residential, so that the shopping and jobs are available before my population increases.

    If anyone else plays this way, I'd like to hear about your experiences. If you don't, give it a try!

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    Indeed Grimhood, this is how I play. Ad now I have a city with 150000 pop without traffic issues and with minimal unemployment, one lonely homeless guy and factories that don't go bust.

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    Forget the RCI. The RCI bar is a result of what you already zoned, not the other way around.

    What matters is the supply and demand charts for sims, workers, shoppers and all others.

     

    The RCI bar isn't a result of what you already zoned. It is a representation of the supply and demand from the chart.

     

    A high yellow bar means you have more freight orders that industry can satisfy. Zone more I or reduce C

    A high blue bar means you have more shoppers than your C can satisfy. Zone more C or reduce R.

    A high green bar means you need workers/shoppers. Zone more R or reduce I or C (Workers creates much more demand from R than shoppers so reducing I would have a bigger effect).

     

    Industry influences R the most, R influences C the most, C influences I the most.

     

    One thing to keep in mind with the charts is that there is a disconnect between C and I. C does not use or need freight from I but it still demands it which artificially creates demand for I. Industry really isn't needed and you can ignore the I demand or just use it for the heck of it. Since there is a disconnect and the numbers aren't balanced, you won't or can't balance all three.

     

    I do agree about separating wealth classes. Separating wealth classes is just easier to manage the amounts needed to closely balance the population charts.  I also keep low wealth/high density thinned out. Too much low wealth/high density buildings together tends to be a traffic nightmare. Unless you want a highly populated city, you really don't need that much low wealth/high density zones anyway. I also like to intermix C and I into R zones to create walking distances to work and shopping and also spreading out the traffic than everything clumped together.

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    Do freight orders have an effect on anything else in the game besides the yellow bar? If filling orders doesn't increase happiness for anything or anyone then it can safely be ignored, right?

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    Industry dies if it can't get rid of freight.  If you don't use a trade depot, industry will deliver to commercial.  So industry is limited by commercial in that sense.  You would need an awful lot of commercial to support very much industry without a trade depot.

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