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SimCity Pares Down Features to Meet Demand

A post to the EA Forums from SimCity senior producer Kip Katsarelis explains the measures they are taking to address launch issues with the new SimCity, which include a server hotfix and a version 1.2 patch, but apparently no refunds (contrary to an early statement that said these would be offered). Word is they have temporarily cut off some features to help their servers cope with demand:

Server capacity is our biggest obstacle. We launched in North America on Tuesday and our servers filled up within a matter of hours. What we saw was that players were having such a good time they didn't want to leave the game, which kept our servers packed and made it difficult for new players to join. We added more servers to accommodate the launch in Australia and Japan, and then more yesterday to accommodate the launch in Europe. As of right now, we are adding even more servers which will be going live over the next three days. And, our plan is to continue to bring more servers online until we have enough to meet the demand, increase player capacity and let more people through the gates and into the game.

Earlier today, we released a patch that temporarily cut off some features including leaderboards, achievements and Cheetah Speed to reduce data stress on the servers and effectively free up space so that we can let more people into the game. These are great features that we're proud of and we'll turn them back on soon, but our number one priority is to bring stability to our servers. This update also resolved some of the bugs and issues that have been frustrating players. You can read all about it at http://forum.ea.com/eaforum/posts/list/9341807.page

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78. Re: SimCity Pares Down Features to Meet Demand Mar 8, 2013, 14:52 AngelicPenguin
 
Creston wrote on Mar 8, 2013, 12:12:
EkimDeLhi wrote on Mar 7, 2013, 22:13:
And the fact that they could try to turn off cheetah speed to resolve the connection issues makes me wonder how much of the calculations are being done on the servers. If it's the case that the game actually does a lot of that on the EA server farm it's no wonder it crashed their shit. Also, if that's the case, it feels like some smoke and mirrors. So like, if everyone in the Sim City "world" starts cheetah (refuse to capitalize) mode'ing, that could just crash the entire game for everybody? At any time?

Well, if you didn't put up enough servers to handle the calculations, sure.

But here's the funny thing: EA claims that the small city sizes are necessary because OUR computers aren't powerful enough to handle the intricate detail of the game.

But then on the flipside, they say (and it seems) that a lot of these calculations are done on their server side, which is supposed to be eminently scalable. So really what they are saying is "We stuck with small city sizes because we don't want to pay for the infrastructure to allow bigger ones."

BUY NOW! SUPPORT EA!

Creston

I thought the difference was they wanted to be able to render ok on a low end computer. I dunno, looking at the videos the game looks pretty nice. I could see a huge city chugging on a slower PC.

So I guess what I'm saying is, isn't there a difference in what they are offloading to the server simulation-wise, and what they are trying to achieve performance-wise when it comes to graphics.

Don't get me wrong this is obviously a mess and a serious embarrassment, but I thought maybe that was THEIR point anyway with the dad's PC comment.
 
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