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Maxis on SimCity: "In many ways, we built an MMO"

A new update from Lucy Bradshaw on SimCity offers "straight answers" from the General Manager of EA's Maxis label on the topic of "Always-Connected and why SimCity is not an offline experience." She goes into detail on all the benefits their approach to requiring the game be played online, saying: "In many ways, we built an MMO." She concludes by explaining that they recognize that there are fans who want to be able to build a single city in isolation, but this does not fit with their vision:

So, could we have built a subset offline mode? Yes. But we rejected that idea because it didn’t fit with our vision. We did not focus on the “single city in isolation” that we have delivered in past SimCities. We recognize that there are fans – people who love the original SimCity – who want that. But we’re also hearing from thousands of people who are playing across regions, trading, communicating and loving the Always-Connected functionality. The SimCity we delivered captures the magic of its heritage but catches up with ever-improving technology.

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44. Re: Maxis on SimCity: Mar 16, 2013, 22:57 AngelicPenguin
 
hex863 wrote on Mar 16, 2013, 12:58:
If that was the vision, then a major error was made in calling the product "SimCity". Quite seriously, calling it "SimCity Online" from the start would have set expectations much better -- it would have avoided much of the disappointment.

It sounds as if they were trying to cash in on the brand name loyalty but then were producing something that didn't fit with that basis of that loyalty.

(And no, I don't think this is some DRM conspiracy theory or pure spin -- I can believe it really was a poor series of decisions over time where a potentially cool vision just wasn't being realized -- and they released anyway without adapting to that reality.)

I guess now it makes sense that they dropped the suffix (Sim City 5 or whatever.) They've rebooted Sim City into an online game.

I agree, though. Just tell us up front that that is the focus and you probably save a lot of headache.
 
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