SimCity lead producer Kip Katsarelis has said SimCity has to have some sort of mission structure for a new generation of players.
"I think that’s just the evolution of games in the last 10 years," Katsarelis told VentureBeat.
"Gamers today, they want to be led through a story. They want to know what the rewards are. They want to achieve something in a small amount of time, or long amounts of time. But they want to know where they’re going. They want some help with that story."
The producer mentioned that earlier SimCity games were true sandboxes, handing the player a toolset, a few tutorials and little else. But while he believes that's not what today's consumers want, Katsarelis was quick to confirm old school players will be able to play the way they want, too.
"We don’t want to make a linear, role-playing game. We still want to have that sandbox and play within that. Players are going to be able to opt into those missions," he said.
This evolution is echoed in Maxis' other modern sandbox title - The Sims.
"The Sims changed from the original Sims to Sims 2 when they introduced wants and fears," Katsarelis noted.
"That added a little bit of that structure. It’s finding that right balance."
SimCity is expected on PC in 2013.
[image - SimCity 2000]