(1up.com) Japanese developers consistently create excellent SimCity games, while EA's internal efforts fail more often than not.
Fans still fondly remember the Nintendo-developed SNES SimCity -- particularly in Japan where few players had the chance to play it on a PC -- because it managed to add a much needed layer of humor, character, and style to the iconic yet slightly bland original now known as SimCity: Classic. The series went on to inspire console and handheld sequels from Japanese developers, including SimCity 64 (N64DD), SimCity DS, and SimCity Creator (Wii). All of these titles take their immediate inspiration from the SNES version and capture at least some of its magic.
Meanwhile, in the West, EA hasn't produced their own PC SimCity game since 2006's disastrous SimCity Societies, which, like all other EA attempts to dumb-down the series, failed to excite fans, critics, or anyone else. In retrospect, the game ranks somewhere between SimTown and SimRefinery in annals of the franchise's history. Even excluding Societies, EA's treatment of the series hardly gives fans reason for hope; the publisher's willingness to port shoddy versions of the game based on the aging SimCity 4 hardly qualifies as inspiring.