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New SimCity Only Playable Online

The upcoming continuation of the SimCity series will require a constant internet connection to play, reports Joystiq. They have confirmed that the game will be sold through digital distributors other than Origin, but lead designer Stone Librande tells them players will need to be connected to EA's online service to play, even in single-player. Word is: "The always-on connection becomes necessary with the game's emphasis on multiplayer and regional impact, and the use of a global economy that all players can influence."

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74. Re: New SimCity Only Playable Online Mar 28, 2012, 21:30 NKD
Bhruic wrote on Mar 28, 2012, 20:42:
Control and money. Also it doesn't seem baseless to consider the publishers history when they make current decisions. This way they can also try to stop those cdkey sale sites that have been cropping up and hitting Origin which only has regional restrictions on its actual storefront.

Same story as Diablo 3, protecting their online crap (DLC storefront) from piracy/cheating. That's the excuse anyway.

I don't buy it. EA has had much bigger games come out (and planning to come out) that have no hint of an "always on" connection requirement. SimCity is not a big enough franchise that they can count on previous purchasers to buy it regardless. They must have had some reason in mind for an always online requirement (assuming the news is accurate, so far the sites reporting it are the types to report every rumour they come across) beyond simply DRM.

As you said, EA has much bigger titles in various stages of release or development where they have no intention of using an "always online" requirement. So it can't just be about DRM or they'd be using it for lots of titles.

There isn't always some evil motive. They simply want to try expanding the game into some multiplayer aspects. They could, in theory, put in an offline mode I'm sure. But if the online component is significant enough they could feel that creating a crippled pure-offline mode that only a few die-hards will use would be a waste of resources.

Maybe that's a mistake, but I don't think there's some insidious ulterior motive. They are simply trying something new that may or may not be a good idea. Remember that SimCity hasn't shipped a real title in 9 years. They have to try and bring in new blood, and new blood love online metagaming stuff for all their games.
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