Sim City, another update, another disappointment

Posted by adrian on January 26th, 2014

I probably don’t need to write this blog really, Jesse Cox summed up my feelings about Sim City in a recent Podcast, check it out here FFWD to 38 minutes 50 seconds. If you can’t be bothered to watch then let me sum it up for you. Sim City is one of those games that always seems like it’s going to be fun and when you’re bored and you don’t know what else to play you think, “I know I’ll pick up Sim City again didn’t it have an update as well – cool.” And then you play it and you realist that the game is still a disappointment.

I completely regret buying the game to be honest. I didn’t pre-order and so I had read some of the negative reviews but I still went and bought it, I have no idea what I was thinking. My thought process was that Sim City has always been an excellent game, it was the same developer what could go wrong. Oh everything could go wrong. I wasn’t that worried by the online requirement as I think that’s the way things are going and as this feature was what was causing the uproar I thought it would be OK.

Sim City used to be one of those games that I have fond memories of, I think I played a couple of the previous versions and really, really enjoyed them. Watching your city grow (or not) handling the resource management for energy, water etc. and building roads is very therapeutic and even if you make a mess you can always bulldozer stuff down and start again. It’s a game that never has an unhappy ending, you can mostly recover even if a disaster strikes and you run out of money, there’s always something you can do to rescue the situation and if not then just start again. It’s an excellent filler game when you want something different from FPS zombie killing, relaxing and stress-less.

Until Sim City V. Actually is it called “V”, I think it’s just called Sim City which makes you think that it’s a brand new and most excellent version. It’s not.

For me the most galling piece of design in the game is the limited space. Who the hell thought that was a good idea? Maybe it’s a design requirement to keep the game manageable for it’s online features but it literally sucks all the fun out of the game. They tried to resolve this by joining cities together but as Jesse says in his rant that never works because people online who you might be playing next to just don’t think in the same way as you do.

Anyway enough moaning. Caroline and I recently moved house and we had boxes and boxes of stuff stored in the garage. Yesterday we finally decided we should sort through it and recycle what we could. We’ve moved to a smaller house and so we are going to have to have a serious clear out. While tidying up boxes of DVDs and CDs I found a few old PC Games, they are so old they are mostly on CD (not DVD). One of these games is Sim City 4, I’m installing it while I write this post in the vague hope it’ll rekindle my love of Sim City.

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