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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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46. Re: Maxis on SimCity: Mar 21, 2013, 17:50 RollinThundr
 
Creston wrote on Mar 17, 2013, 12:17:
nin wrote on Mar 16, 2013, 17:50:
In far more interesting news, both Anno2070 and Tropico 4 are fantastic games, and FAR more deserving of your money than this latest EA fuck-up.

I've stumbled across this guys 8 hour guide, if anyone's interested...





Yeah, his stuff is great. He does a better job at explaining how to play the game than the game itself does.

I've gotten pretty good at it now. Finishing up the campaign, then it's on to a continual game and a monument.

The one thing I wish they'd cut from the game is the ultra-rudimentary RTS bits. They're just boring, and they feel out of place.

Creston

Wait.. How many post decrying this game and EA have you made over the past two weeks and you went and bought it anyway? FFS Creston.
 
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45. Re: Maxis on SimCity: Mar 17, 2013, 12:17 Creston
 
nin wrote on Mar 16, 2013, 17:50:
In far more interesting news, both Anno2070 and Tropico 4 are fantastic games, and FAR more deserving of your money than this latest EA fuck-up.

I've stumbled across this guys 8 hour guide, if anyone's interested...





Yeah, his stuff is great. He does a better job at explaining how to play the game than the game itself does.

I've gotten pretty good at it now. Finishing up the campaign, then it's on to a continual game and a monument.

The one thing I wish they'd cut from the game is the ultra-rudimentary RTS bits. They're just boring, and they feel out of place.

Creston
 
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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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43. Re: Maxis on SimCity: Mar 16, 2013, 22:46 Lit_Reflex001
 
Props to the guy who got it to work offline. Those fucking DRM SCUMBAGS claim that the game is dependent on the server to run at all.  
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42. Re: Maxis on SimCity: Mar 16, 2013, 22:05 Mr. Tact
 
ASeven wrote on Mar 16, 2013, 08:31:
Anyway, have a very fair review:

http://youtu.be/GV_94TQUvBA
I'd agree it is a pretty fair review.
 
Truth is brutal. Prepare for pain.
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41. Re: Maxis on SimCity: Mar 16, 2013, 18:25 Eirikrautha
 
El Pit wrote on Mar 16, 2013, 12:42:
Google Translate Bullshit-English:

"In many ways, we had this DRM and had do build a game around it. A small game. Now give us your money and deal with it."

Allow me a slight edit of your post, please:

"In many ways, we had this DRM and had do build a game around it and needed a well-known or beloved franchise to use to drive sales and acceptance of it. Like Diablo 3 did. A small game. Now give us your money and deal with it."

Thank you...

 
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40. Re: Maxis on SimCity: Mar 16, 2013, 17:50 nin
 
In far more interesting news, both Anno2070 and Tropico 4 are fantastic games, and FAR more deserving of your money than this latest EA fuck-up.

I've stumbled across this guys 8 hour guide, if anyone's interested...




 
http://www.nin.com/pub/tension/
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39. Re: Maxis on SimCity: Mar 16, 2013, 16:29 Jivaro
 
Ubisoft and ActiBlizz must be sending EA kegs of beer and possibly flowers & candy by now. Instead of everyone bitching about Ubisoft's DRM and how crappy Diablo 3 is they are now solely focused on this pile of crap.

 
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38. Re: Maxis on SimCity: Mar 16, 2013, 12:58 hex863
 
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.)
 
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37. Re: Maxis on SimCity: Mar 16, 2013, 12:55 Creston
 
I give Maxis the much coveted FIVE dismissive wanks.

In far more interesting news, both Anno2070 and Tropico 4 are fantastic games, and FAR more deserving of your money than this latest EA fuck-up.

Creston
 
Avatar 15604
 
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36. Re: Maxis on SimCity: Mar 16, 2013, 12:42 El Pit
 
Google Translate Bullshit-English:

"In many ways, we had this DRM and had do build a game around it. A small game. Now give us your money and deal with it."
 
Consoles? I owned two: a Pong clone and an Atari 2600. And that's it.
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35. Re: Maxis on SimCity: Mar 16, 2013, 12:15 Saboth
 
Developers do not want to make a single player game that pays off big once. They want to leech money continously. Some games have no reason to have online or multiplayer components, but they are shoved in to make "online connection" necessary. These guys are foundering, trying to figure out how to juice customers every few weeks. The paid online mmo model is collapsing, just as many of them are attempting to go that route. It seems the single player game is fading away, as we are all pushed to interact with others and pay fees for skins, upgrades, map packs, etc. I've played MMOs for like 20 years and I'm kind of MMO'd out. I don't want to rely on others to play a game, and I don't want expectations of myself when I get home from work. I just want to hit "play", enjoy myself for an hour, then take a break or even shut down for the night.  
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34. Re: Maxis on SimCity: Mar 16, 2013, 12:13 nin
 
xXBatmanXx wrote on Mar 16, 2013, 10:42:
"In many ways, we built an MMO.

huh?


Isn't that amazing they never mentioned that until after it shipped, and the money collected? For a regular game, these problems are inexcusable, but for a mmo, it's just another launch. So they'll just call it a mmo, to try and justify their stupidity.



 
http://www.nin.com/pub/tension/
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33. Re: Maxis on SimCity: Mar 16, 2013, 11:27 Quboid
 
Not many games patch in additional content to any significant volume. Some, yes, but the only genre which reliably does this, for free or paid, is MMOs.  
Avatar 10439
 
- Quboid
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32. Re: Maxis on SimCity: Mar 16, 2013, 11:21 Eirikrautha
 
Quboid wrote on Mar 15, 2013, 21:22:
She was comparing how they plan to continually develop and add to the game to how an MMO typically continues to develop after launch. That's the context and as far as we know, she's right. Stop looking for sticks to beat EA with, there's more than enough real ones.

Yes, because ONLY MMOs continue to be developed after launch. I mean if only we had some kind of system by which developers could "patch" additional content into a game, or even fix problems with the game. And perhaps some brilliant developer could figure out a way to let gamers download additional content, or even "modify" the game themselves. Then we wouldn't need constant internet connections in order for the game to continue to be developed. So obviously Lucy Bradshaw is right that any game that continues to be changed after launch must be an MMO...

Dunce
 
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31. Re: Maxis on SimCity: Mar 16, 2013, 10:54 Quboid
 
xXBatmanXx wrote on Mar 16, 2013, 10:42:
"In many ways, we built an MMO.

huh?

There's some dispute about the meaning of that but in context, and read with more than 10 brain cells, it's pretty clear she was just talking about they'll being continuing to work on it and add content.
 
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- Quboid
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30. Re: Maxis on SimCity: Mar 16, 2013, 10:44 xXBatmanXx
 
ASeven wrote on Mar 16, 2013, 08:31:
I swear I haven't seen this amount of obvious spin in a long, long time. Not even in the oil industry have I seen this sort of spin.

Anyway, have a very fair review:

http://youtu.be/GV_94TQUvBA

hahah, didn't watch it, once I saw the box said "Winner of 26 PC Game Awards" I click close. What a bunch of SHIT!@
 
Avatar 10714
 
In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem. / Few men have virtue enough to withstand the highest bidder.
Playing: New dad
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29. Re: Maxis on SimCity: Mar 16, 2013, 10:42 xXBatmanXx
 
"In many ways, we built an MMO.

huh?
 
Avatar 10714
 
In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem. / Few men have virtue enough to withstand the highest bidder.
Playing: New dad
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28. Re: Maxis on SimCity: Mar 16, 2013, 10:35 Quboid
 
deqer wrote on Mar 15, 2013, 21:52:
Don't bother explaining it to him, Mr. Tact.

Not worth your time. lol

Yeah ... nice argument, definitely explains the errors in my case.

This is why developers don't communicate very much. One naive choice of phrase and you invent something to criticise them with. One of the biggest game launches from one of the biggest game publishers resulting in one of gaming's all time biggest fuck-ups - and you're still resorting to assumptions and out of context interpretations of a nothing comment.

"it’s not final and it never will be" - sounds kind of like an MMO, no? No, of course not, let's pretend that she claimed SimCity was an MMO. That's not true at all but it would be funny and it's not like there's anything true to laugh at EA about over SimCity's faultless launch, eh?
 
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- Quboid
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27. Re: Maxis on SimCity: Mar 16, 2013, 08:31 ASeven
 
I swear I haven't seen this amount of obvious spin in a long, long time. Not even in the oil industry have I seen this sort of spin.

Anyway, have a very fair review:

http://youtu.be/GV_94TQUvBA
 
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46 Replies. 3 pages. Viewing page 1.
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