SimCity 5 Catch-All - Offline mode coming in next update

Tkyl wrote:

So then don't let them be affected by outside variables. Play in a private region, with just yourself. Maxis have said that you'll be able to play in your own region if you so choose.

QFT.

From Page 10:

Edit for increased usefulness:
Polygon article about online leaderboards.

RPS article about data visualization in simcity.

I wrote a very in-depth preview of the game. If you're not sure about it what's new, take a look at it.

There's also a new screenshot out. Linked due to size. It looks like they're working on filling in those green spaces, which were really flat and blah in earlier videos / screenshots.

There's a new video on Amazon of all places: http://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.htm...

It's disappointing. Region size looks very small. I don't mind having a more game-y SimCity but I didn't think regions would be THAT small.

Yikes. Not only are the regions small, but the cities are tiny, assuming the gameplay footage halfway through the video is accurate.

I was already leaning towards not buying SC5 due to EA forcing everyone to play it online, but this is making the decision a lot easier.

Yes, the cities look like small cities in SimCity 4, not medium (as was thought earlier).

What really puzzles me is the fact cities are so far away from each other. I understand that the new simulation model might be too demanding for bigger cities, but they could compensate by letting cities border each other. You could imagine each little city being a community within the larger whole, just like really cities.

But nope, they're stuck out in the middle of nowhere.

I didn't see anywhere in the video where they said that they were showing the largest cities.

Also, how do we know cities can't touch one another?

I agree with everything that's being said, but it seems we're jumping to conclusions based off of a trailer that's meant to convey things in simple forms, hence cities not touching borders. It's entirely likely cities won't touch borders, but there's still a damn good chance they could.

My impression of that amazon video: Ocean Quigley (I honestly didn't believe that was his name at first) has the single greatest facial hair in the gaming industry.

Zembonez wrote:

My impression of that amazon video: Ocean Quigley (I honestly didn't believe that was his name at first) has the single greatest facial hair in the gaming industry.

With a name like Ocean Quigley, would you expect anything less?

garion333 wrote:

I didn't see anywhere in the video where they said that they were showing the largest cities.

Also, how do we know cities can't touch one another?

I agree with everything that's being said, but it seems we're jumping to conclusions based off of a trailer that's meant to convey things in simple forms, hence cities not touching borders. It's entirely likely cities won't touch borders, but there's still a damn good chance they could.

They've done everything but confirm that this is the largest city size (actually, the only city size). They've shown cities and regions in several videos now, and they have all been this size. Why would they hide a larger city size if they have it?

Same goes for cities not being adjacent.

Faceless Clock wrote:
garion333 wrote:

I didn't see anywhere in the video where they said that they were showing the largest cities.

Also, how do we know cities can't touch one another?

I agree with everything that's being said, but it seems we're jumping to conclusions based off of a trailer that's meant to convey things in simple forms, hence cities not touching borders. It's entirely likely cities won't touch borders, but there's still a damn good chance they could.

They've done everything but confirm that this is the largest city size (actually, the only city size). They've shown cities and regions in several videos now, and they have all been this size. Why would they hide a larger city size if they have it?

Same goes for cities not being adjacent.

Well, if they're following Maxis's traditional development practices, they might not have made that decision yet. They have been plastering "Not Final Software" over all of the videos, and even recent Maxis games have had an iterated development process that makes it hard to infer the details of the final product, because even they don't know for sure.

New video on regional/multi-city play.. It's new to me, anyway. My apologies if you've already seen it.

Looks like you'll have several city sites in a region. It doesn't look like you'll have to share a region with another player unless you want to.

Just came to post that myself. Here are my questions and issues (some new, some I've mentioned before) while watching this new video.

1. As seen in the previous video, the "cities" are very small (maybe even smaller than the smallest size from SC4), and there only seems to be one size.

2. On the region map, you can see that there are roads/highways going between the city squares. Are those auto-generated by the game, or does the player have the ability to make them? If they're generated by the game, that's a bad design decision IMO, and I hope that players are able to delete them and lay the roads where they want.

3. "The police will also travel to neighboring cities and patrol there too." Well considering how tiny the cities are, that makes sense. [/cynical]

4. The fact that 95% of the video shows the city in a very zoomed-in view comes across as trying to hide how small the cities are.

[edit]

5. If the region shown here is representative, and we have no reason to assume it's not, then a player's region only has four areas in which to build a very small city, and one separate area reserved for a "Great Work." Not a fan.

MeatMan wrote:

Just came to post that myself. Here are my questions and issues (some new, some I've mentioned before) while watching this new video.

1. As seen in the previous video, the "cities" are very small (maybe even smaller than the smallest size from SC4), and there only seems to be one size.

2. On the region map, you can see that there are roads/highways going between the city squares. Are those auto-generated by the game, or does the player have the ability to make them? If they're generated by the game, that's a bad design decision IMO, and I hope that players are able to delete them and lay the roads where they want.

3. "The police will also travel to neighboring cities and patrol there too." Well considering how tiny the cities are, that makes sense. [/cynical]

4. The fact that 95% of the video shows the city in a very zoomed-in view comes across as trying to hide how small the cities are.

[edit]

5. If the region shown here is representative, and we have no reason to assume it's not, then a player's region only has four areas in which to build a very small city, and one separate area reserved for a "Great Work." Not a fan.

I agree with all of your concerns. However, if we look at it from another light:

Because the cities can share resources so much (Police, Firefighters, Money, Workers, etc), you could treat all four regions as one larger city. While that obviously isn't ideal, it might provide the "big city" feel.

/Just spit-balling.

Tkyl wrote:

Because the cities can share resources so much (Police, Firefighters, Money, Workers, etc), you could treat all four regions as one larger city. While that obviously isn't ideal, it might provide the "big city" feel.

While I agree that it could be worse, I would posit that because the cities in the region are so small, all four of them are no bigger than the large city size from the region in SC4. So essentially, you're limited to only having one large pseudo-city comprised of four connected satellite cities.

This makes me think of another question: With SC5 being online-only, will a player be able to create multiple regions? If you're limited to only one region, I could see that causing even more (a lot more) pushback from SimCity fans.

It doesn't look like you'll have to share a region with another player unless you want to.

How about not having to play it online at all? That would be good.

Malor wrote:
It doesn't look like you'll have to share a region with another player unless you want to.

How about not having to play it online at all? That would be good.

Yeah, that's still reason #1 why I most likely will not be buying SC5. But that doesn't prevent me from participating in discussion of other game details as they become known, if for no other reason than to make potential buyers aware of them.

Plus, complaining on a forum is rather therapeutic at times.

Tkyl wrote:

Because the cities can share resources so much (Police, Firefighters, Money, Workers, etc), you could treat all four regions as one larger city. While that obviously isn't ideal, it might provide the "big city" feel.

Living in the San Francisco Bay Area, this design strikes me as being a perfect replica of this area. It's extremely easy, as a resident, to forget that what can look like one big city is actually dozens of smaller cities all functioning as a single region. This is especially true of the East Bay, where a lot of people don't even know about some of the cities over there, even ones they live right next to.

I'm very intrigued by this approach. I always liked playing huge cities in SC4, but now the challenge will be to construct many smaller cities that can successfully function by working together, and I think that's a good way to take the series.

Malor wrote:
It doesn't look like you'll have to share a region with another player unless you want to.

How about not having to play it online at all? That would be good.

But Diablo 3 had soooo many benefits to being online always! Like how it's been down since 1 am today, or how it goes down every tuesday for maintenance, or etc etc etc >_>

ahrezmendi wrote:
Tkyl wrote:

Because the cities can share resources so much (Police, Firefighters, Money, Workers, etc), you could treat all four regions as one larger city. While that obviously isn't ideal, it might provide the "big city" feel.

Living in the San Francisco Bay Area, this design strikes me as being a perfect replica of this area. It's extremely easy, as a resident, to forget that what can look like one big city is actually dozens of smaller cities all functioning as a single region. This is especially true of the East Bay, where a lot of people don't even know about some of the cities over there, even ones they live right next to.

I'm very intrigued by this approach. I always liked playing huge cities in SC4, but now the challenge will be to construct many smaller cities that can successfully function by working together, and I think that's a good way to take the series.

The problem is the game doesn't have the scale for something like this. Each individual city is extremely small. You'd have a hard time re-creating downtown Portland, Oregon in the space of one city plot, and that's not exactly a huge city. And that will be without any of the suburbs or close-in urban residential areas which are part of the city.

That would be okay if it was possible to place cities right next to each other, but for some reason, that isn't how it works. We've been shown a fair amount of gameplay at this point and in every region the cities are spaced out. This seems to be so that to accommodate the pre-generated terrain, including highway/major rail lines and the new Great Works.

So you end up with a region where everything is chopped up into symmetrical blocks and, even if you use all the space available, you can only craft a small urban area.

The worst part is that SimCity 4 already did regions. Trading with other cities? Yea, that's not new. The online part of it is new, and some elements like crime/pollution leaking over are new, but regions that interact have been around for almost a decade in SC4. And they were better because there were different sizes and they directly bordered each other, so you could create your dream metropolis if that's what you wanted.

Faceless Clock wrote:

The worst part is that SimCity 4 already did regions. Trading with other cities? Yea, that's not new. The online part of it is new, and some elements like crime/pollution leaking over are new, but regions that interact have been around for almost a decade in SC4. And they were better because there were different sizes and they directly bordered each other, so you could create your dream metropolis if that's what you wanted.

I really wish they had a way in SC4 to play without regions since it was pretty much required to get a thriving city built :\

Aside from the online features, which I really don't care about, I've yet to see anything that makes this a definite purchase for me. I've got enough other things coming out in March next year, and I'm really starting to feel that what I want is just Simcity 2000 with modern graphics. That's not happening this time around. I think I'm happy sticking with the old games next time the urge to Sim hits.

Full disclosure: I'm likely too excited about the game's graphical style and building customization, so I'm predisposed to accept other design choices without much fuss. I'm praying that this game will feel like building a tiny toy town world.

I hope I don't end up playing this thing alone! I've already preordered it, so friend me up (MateoFalconeGWJ) on Origin if you pick it up.

ahrezmendi wrote:

Living in the San Francisco Bay Area, this design strikes me as being a perfect replica of this area. It's extremely easy, as a resident, to forget that what can look like one big city is actually dozens of smaller cities all functioning as a single region. This is especially true of the East Bay, where a lot of people don't even know about some of the cities over there, even ones they live right next to.

I'm very intrigued by this approach. I always liked playing huge cities in SC4, but now the challenge will be to construct many smaller cities that can successfully function by working together, and I think that's a good way to take the series.

I'm not overly concerned about the city size being smaller for very similar reasons. It's a definite shift away from what we're familiar with, but I have to imagine that its caused by some of the new features that I'm also excited about: multiplayer interaction and micro-level sims. The limitations forced on the game due to simulating each individual person in the town had to have an impact on the maximum city size, especially considering that the sims in neighboring towns are being modeled at the same time.

I'm also okay with the always connected thing, since I've been trained to accept it over the past few years. Minecraft was the catalyst for me. Even to play singleplayer Minecraft, I had to log in. But even if I could play it disconnected, I didn't want to. The single player experience was far less appealing in the long term than interacting with people around me as I built my own part of the world. I'm optimistically hoping for a similar buzz from this game.

I kept wanting to play SimCity 4 with even larger towns than I was able. So, not impressed by what I've heard so far.

I'm not a size guy when it comes to cities so the smaller city size doesn't bother me. The thing that does bother me is the fact those streetcars stood there for quite a while when in a sped up mode. That should never happen, the streetcars should only make brief stops before continuing on and never not stopping at one station or never leaving another.

The other thing that still drives me up the wall is the fact that this will be the first Sim City without subways. I can understand why they aren't in since there are no longer any underground modes but it still bothers me that the more compact solution to transportation in a city is ripped from me.

All in all I'm excited but I think they need to start tweaking their transportation model and making it look and play better than what we seen in that video.

And if their trains so much as even think about disappearing when I can see them then I might throw a minor fit because that was the one thing I hated the most in Sim City 4. Give us these awesome Monorails, EL trains, and more in the expansion pack but all they do is appear and disappear like ghosts. I'd be much happier if they came from outside the region, down the main rail line into the city, picked up the goods at the station/s, and then left the city without disappearing once. Now that would have me clapping my hands and as excited for Sim City as I am for Christmas.

From what I can see this is not the Simcity I have been waiting for.

Unless future news shows me that my assumptions are wrong, this will be the first Simcity I will skip since the 80s.

Small towns
Region play but not actually connected so that I can build satellite cities
Lack of transportation options
Unable to terraform the land

This ain't the Simcity I'm looking for. Moving along

mateofalcone wrote:

Full disclosure: I'm likely too excited about the game's graphical style and building customization, so I'm predisposed to accept other design choices without much fuss. I'm praying that this game will feel like building a tiny toy town world.

I hope I don't end up playing this thing alone! I've already preordered it, so friend me up (MateoFalconeGWJ) on Origin if you pick it up.

Barring any major awful information they haven't disclosed yet, I'm definitely going to end up running with this game, so at the least we'll have to get into a region together. I'll have to remember to friend you up on Origin! I think I'm just "farscry" on there.

Farscry wrote:
mateofalcone wrote:

Full disclosure: I'm likely too excited about the game's graphical style and building customization, so I'm predisposed to accept other design choices without much fuss. I'm praying that this game will feel like building a tiny toy town world.

I hope I don't end up playing this thing alone! I've already preordered it, so friend me up (MateoFalconeGWJ) on Origin if you pick it up.

Barring any major awful information they haven't disclosed yet, I'm definitely going to end up running with this game, so at the least we'll have to get into a region together. I'll have to remember to friend you up on Origin! I think I'm just "farscry" on there.

I will definitely be getting this, so friend me up as well: Tkyl

I'm still in wait-and-see mode. I'm hoping the smaller regions will play nicer with my (old-ish) PC. I'm also hoping smaller regions will be less tedious than in SC4. As much as I liked it, there seemed to be far too much to do in SC4. Might have been all those ploppable downloads, though.

Any word on user-created items in SC5?

Tkyl wrote:
Farscry wrote:
mateofalcone wrote:

Full disclosure: I'm likely too excited about the game's graphical style and building customization, so I'm predisposed to accept other design choices without much fuss. I'm praying that this game will feel like building a tiny toy town world.

I hope I don't end up playing this thing alone! I've already preordered it, so friend me up (MateoFalconeGWJ) on Origin if you pick it up.

Barring any major awful information they haven't disclosed yet, I'm definitely going to end up running with this game, so at the least we'll have to get into a region together. I'll have to remember to friend you up on Origin! I think I'm just "farscry" on there.

I will definitely be getting this, so friend me up as well: Tkyl

Will do!

The more videos I watch, the less impressed I am. In addition to most of the above reasons, this feels like a Sims-style DLC selling beast in EA's eyes. All of the public transport, utility, industry, etc. options that are missing from the main release will be available for $10-15 each, I'd wager. Oh, and modding will probably be verboten.

Kraint wrote:

The more videos I watch, the less impressed I am. In addition to most of the above reasons, this feels like a Sims-style DLC selling beast in EA's eyes. All of the public transport, utility, industry, etc. options that are missing from the main release will be available for $10-15 each, I'd wager. Oh, and modding will probably be verboten.

No modding? Have you played any recent Sims games? While not technically mods, the amount of community produced houses, items, lots, families, etc. is HUGE. If this SimCity follows the trend The Sims has, you'll be overloaded with more user-generated content than you can possibly download.