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Cities: Skylines 2 devs may as well be asking people not to play it at launch

If you decide to play Cities: Skylines 2 next week, don't expect it to run very well.

Cities: Skylines 2
Image credit: Paradox Interactive

The games industry's habit of launching broken games and apologising on the day of release with a list of known issues and promises to continue working to make things better may have felt like the worst it's going to get, but the industry never stops innovating.

We're now entering a new era where developers find it okay to advise players that the game they're about to buy may not run well, but that they're going to release it anyway. This is exactly what the team behind Cities: Skylines 2 just did.

Cities: Skylines 2 remains of the 2023's most-anticipated games, even in a year as stacked as this one. Skylines 2 is a sequel to one of the most beloved - and very popular - city builders, but this statement from developer Colossal Order will probably stop a lot of players from getting the game when it launches next week.

Colossal Order addressed concerns about potential performance issues on the Paradox forums, which became louder after the developer raised the minimum and recommended specs for the PC version.

"As we've always believed in transparency, we'd like to further shed some light on the current state of the build," the statement starts out.

"Cities: Skylines 2 is a next-gen title, and naturally, it demands certain hardware requirements. With that said, while our team has worked tirelessly to deliver the best experience possible, we have not achieved the benchmark we targeted."

Colossal Order explained that despite knowing this, it believes releasing the game now to be "the best way forward" for the "long-term of the project."

"We are proud of the unique gameplay and features in Cities: Skylines 2, and we genuinely believe that it offers a great experience that you will enjoy," the developer added.

The statement ends by reassuring players that the game will be continually improved "over the coming months," reiterating that it only wanted to "manage expectations on performance for the coming release."

The developer also prepared an FAQ that delves a little deeper. The very first question on the list is the one everyone is likely going to have after reading this: Why release the game now if you know there are performance issues?

"We've taken the long-term vision of the project into account and feel that a release now is the right step," the answer reads. "Cities: Skylines 2 [sic] features a gameplay that we're very proud of and despite that the game is performance heavy, we believe it will be an experience you'll truly appreciate."

Cities: Skylines 2 was only recently delayed to spring 2024 on PS5 and Xbox Series X/S, so it's easy to imagine performance issues had a hand in this last-minute delay - just not on PC.

At the very least, with Cities: Skylines 2 being a Game Pass release on day one, you won't necessarily need to pay $50 to potentially have it run terribly on your PC.

Cities: Skylines 2 is out October 24.

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Cities: Skylines II

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Sherif Saed

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