Dear Electronic Arts,
My mother always told me that it's petty to say "I told you so" when
proven right. That's why I really hope she isn't reading this, because I have a message for you: I told you so.
But it's not just me; a big chunk of the gaming community feels the
same way. I don't want this to seem petty, but I genuinely want you to learn from your mistakes, so you don't repeat what's shaping up to be one of the most embarassing game launches in years.
So far, Amazon has 1,091 one-star user reviews for SimCity out of 1,213 reviews total (and I'm pretty sure several of the five-star reviews are being sarcastic). A Change.org petition has raised over 35,000 signatures in two days demanding that you offer a single-player, offline mode in SimCity and eschew always-on online for games. Polygon has revised its score of SimCity increasingly downward from 9.5 to 4. At PCMag, we even came up with seven SimCity alternatives for players who don't want to deal with server problems.
I don't want to gloat. I want you to understand why this happened, and how you can prevent it from happening in the future. When concerns are raised over "online features," listen to them. When people warn you months in advance that there will be server issues, listen to them. When gamers worry that they won't be able to play SimCity years from now (when every SimCity game from the Super Nintendo version to Simcity 4 remains playable and enjoyable), listen to them. Turn away from your paranoia regarding piracy and realize that there are tons of customers who want to give you money in exchange for being able to play a game. Appreciate the value of customer loyalty and developing a community instead of squeezing every last drop out of people and discarding them.