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SimCity gets blessing of series creator Will Wright

Friday, 8th March 2013 13:06 GMT By Dave Cook

SimCity may have got off to a rocky start this week, but series creator Will Wright has been playing it, and he’s very pleased with the results.

Wright co-founded SimCity developer Maxis in 1987, but left the studio in April 2009 to pursue other projects. Speaking with NowGamer, Wright gave his impressions of the new game.

“I like it a lot,” he revealed. “It’s interesting, in some sense it reminds me of the post-economic crash. It’s not about making your city big, it’s about making them not poor”, an said of the new Glassbox engine, “I think they did a good job of balancing all the interrelated factors. At first it felt a little claustrophobic, you know with the size of the land, but after playing for a while I think it really makes a lot of sense.

“Visually it’s great. It was my old art director actually that was lead designer, and he had a very definite vision about the way that it would feel. But yeah, I’m enjoying it quite a bit.”

Despite some gamers pouring scorn on the size of SimCity’s new land-masses, Wright said he wasn’t that phased by them, saying that it lent the game increased focus.

“It makes you focus more on interrelations of those factors,” he continued. “So you could make a city four times bigger but you’d be dealing with the exact same variables. So by kind of focusing it in it feels more personal, and so I really do want to zoom down and get a sense of what it feels like on the street. I think the visuals are just amazing, I love the tilt-shift focal lens.”

This morning I re-capped all of SimCity’s server and Origin issues here, and offered some talking points about EA’s handling of the situation.

What do you think? Have you managed to get playing SimCity today, despite the server woes? Let us know below.

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21 Comments

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  1. IncognitoMode

    I managed to play the tutorial for the second time since the game apparently forgot that I had played it yesterday and when I tried to create my own city it told me the servers were offline. That about sums up my SimCity experience.

    #1 1 year ago
  2. deathm00n

    Let me see if I get this right: the game is very good right? The problem it have is ver bad bugs with connection? If this is the case then I will buy it anyway. It’s no like we still live in the 90′s when there was a patch after almost a year. I don’t see anything that could no be fixed.

    I beta test a lot of Free-To-Play MMORPGs and ALL of them have some kind of connection issue that get resolved after 1 week or 1 month, seeing how much money EA have it’s only a matter of time till they fix the game. I hope reviewers take another look at it after all is normal

    #2 1 year ago
  3. mistermogul

    @2 – Are you one of those Chinese spammers that’s been paid to post by EA?

    Not only does this have server issues stopping you playing the game it crashes and uses server-side saves which make sure you lose all your progress.

    Worse still is the always on requirement for a single player game that will ensure this game only has a limited life of probably a few years or whenever EA feel like pulling the plug on the servers.

    Also when in the 90′s did you ever get a patch after a year? There were no internet patches in the 90′s!

    Your point about there being no issues that can’t be fixed is irrelevant. People have paid for a product and it should work upon its release. Could you imagine me going to buy a new car and the manufacturer saying don’t worry it’ll have a gearbox in a few months and the brakes will work one day!

    Funny thing is EA have added DRM to prevent piracy yet I’d like to know if the money they save by doing that is equal or less to the money they will lose from lost sales as I’m sure as hell not buying this game and may not buy other EA games in the future if they work in a similar fashion. They are hurting their already damaged reputation further

    #3 1 year ago
  4. deathm00n

    @3 I wish, get paid to post on the internet seems good :) but I’m not. And I agree, always online in a singeplayer is stupid, but isn’t the point of this reboot to make it more online?

    But do you really think a game should be bashed because of connection issues that surelly will get resolved? Servers are a complicated part of gaming. Like I said, go play a online game that just released and come back.

    #4 1 year ago
  5. mistermogul

    @ 4 – “But do you really think a game should be bashed because of connection issues that surelly will get resolved?”

    No I don’t, but I also don’t like the other restrictions EA are putting on this game. DRM, server-side saves, Origin only etc…

    #5 1 year ago
  6. Samoan Spider

    @3 To be fair, there were internet patches, it’s just that we did things like get them when they came out on magazine demo discs but I just had to chime in and correct you there. Although the complexity of games wasn’t there then, neither were the game breaking bugs we see more and more of lately. But taking the car anology and adding some relevance it is very common for software updates to be required for CAN network devices on vehicles to fix issues, even on a brand new car (ECM, CEM/BSM, TCM etc…). Just for clarity btw, not to justify anything.

    #6 1 year ago
  7. deathm00n

    @5 Okay, but do these things justify the score for example of Polygon? They gave the game 9.5 with the pre-release and after playing it post-release droped it to 4, I don’t think this is fair.

    #7 1 year ago
  8. ps3fanboy

    #2 deathm00n

    the paid chinese ea spammer strikes again!

    dont be fooled people…

    #8 1 year ago
  9. DSB

    @4 Shouldn’t they at least mention that it’s not working as intended?

    Trading is hit and miss right now (you may trade x resources and get nothing) and there seems to be a big difference between the reviewers who actually bother to mention something like that, and the ones who don’t.

    I’m guessing the ones who don’t didn’t even notice, and that just draws their entire conclusion into question.

    If you’re not paying attention, then what are you doing reviewing a game in the first place?

    #9 1 year ago
  10. deathm00n

    @9 Sure, they should. I’ve read Gamespot review, they sum up that there’s a lot wrong, but behind it there’s a good game still worth you time.

    I will buy it in the hopes that it will get fixed.

    #10 1 year ago
  11. ifrit82

    #deathmoon

    This isnt a MMO, and if EA want pass this idea, all this problem with server are more severe from before.
    After all problem with diablo 3, this situation is ridiculous .

    People need wait hours to play, connections with server are instable, progress cant save, cheetah speed there isnt more (i hope only for now).

    Then if you want make a only online game, you need be preparate. I can understand problem of unstable connection with server, not others.

    We talk about EA, not a indie software house.

    They had to do a big beta test with a lot of people month ago and EA know how much copy they shipped and can imagine number of players that there would be at first week.

    If they want fight pirates games, need that who pay have a good play, not a lot of problems and few like a idiot because give them money. The first rule is “be nice with your customer” .

    Better i dont say what i think about DLC first day.

    For now EA make a bad work.

    #11 1 year ago
  12. OwnedWhenStoned

    I finally got to play it earlier, and the game isn’t that bad. It ISNT SimCity though.

    In its own right it’s a nice town management game.

    To anyone who’s ever played SimCity 2000 or SimCity 4, the latest iteration simply isn’t anything like it. It’s like a cross between TheSims and farmville. You can tell there is complexity in there, but the game mechanic feels incredibly dumbed down. I thought this was the case in the Demo but hoped I was wrong.

    Maybe it will get better with time (I’ve only played a couple of hours) but I doný think it will ever hit the heights of earlier SimCitys.

    #12 1 year ago
  13. DSB

    @12 That’s exactly what it feels like.

    Personally it’s just not what I want from a Simcity game. It has to tap into that manic Transport Tycoon’ish need to always be expanding, as well as improving, otherwise I just kinda lose interest.

    I think the idea is that you should be marvelling at all the things that go on, while focusing on that upgrade metagame that used to be common in games like Caesar or Pharaoh.

    It’s just too simple for me, and I personally don’t get a lot out of watching all those little people going about their business. If I want The Sims, I’ll play The Sims.

    #13 1 year ago
  14. OwnedWhenStoned

    @13 – missed that comment but you nailed it.

    The game wouldn’t be that bad if you had no memory or experience of what the series USED to be like. If you do it’s pretty disappointing.

    #14 1 year ago
  15. Soft-Is

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hAembATHKyM

    #15 1 year ago
  16. xxJPRACERxx

    deathm00n, that’s exactly what I think. The actual review score should be about the game design, gameplay, gfx, UI, sound, etc…

    What’s happening with the server problems is regrettable but this got nothing to do with the actual game, which is fun. And this will be fix soon.

    #16 1 year ago
  17. deathm00n

    @16 At last, someone who agree with me on this :) Have you got the game? If so, when I get mine let’s play together!

    #17 1 year ago
  18. IncognitoMode

    Managed to finally play the game for a couple of hours, it’s pretty fun so far my only complaint is the city size which I hope they will increase.

    They have made it a lot easier to manage stuff compared to say Sim City 4 where you had a billion popups on stuff that needed doing all the time. I’m also loving the specializations and the building editor.

    Note that i’m a super casual SimCity player that just wants to build a cool city and fuck around for a bit so in regards to the depth of the game my opinion is probably invalid.

    #18 1 year ago
  19. rusty_shackleford

    I wonder how much will wright was paid to say he ‘liked’ this abomination and I wonder how he sleeps knowing what EA has done to his franchises, EA ruined the Sims and Spore as well.

    #19 1 year ago
  20. xxJPRACERxx

    @19 Yeah, and I wonder if you’ve played the game at all. Probably not, people like to have opinion on thing they don’t know anything about…

    #20 1 year ago
  21. dkpunk

    @16 It’s a BROKEN game. Doesn’t matter if they patch it. They released a game that isn’t even playable 4 days after launch. They could have bypassed all of this if they weren’t so greedy. You reap what you sow.

    #21 1 year ago