Submitted by davewhite on Jan 12, 2014
United States

Let’s get right to it.

SIMCITY OFFLINE IS COMING!

I’ve wanted to say those words for quite some time, so my apologies that I didn’t take the time to say Happy New Year first.

Yes, Offline is coming as a free download with Update 10 to all SimCity players. When we launch it, all of your previously downloaded content will be available to you anytime, anywhere, without the need for an internet connection. We are in the late phases of wrapping up its development and while we want to get it into your hands as soon as possible, our priority is to make sure that it’s as polished as possible before we release it. So, until then… testing, testing and more testing. As one of the final steps, we’re putting Offline into the hands of some of our most hardcore players, the DevTesters. This group of volunteers is going to put Offline through its paces before we release it.

In Update 10, you can still play solo in Regions on your own, or in Multiplayer with people from around the world. What’s new is the Single Player Mode, which allows you to play the game Offline by yourself. And because your saved games in this mode are stored locally, you can save and load to your heart’s content. Our team will be delivering a follow-up blog that will outline the full details in the near future so stay tuned.

So what does this mean for the Online game? All of the benefits of being connected will remain including access to Multiplayer, the Global Market and Leaderboards. And all of your pre-existing saved cities and regions will still be accessible should you log-in to the Online game.

Bringing the game Offline means big things for our wonderful community of Modders. They can now make modifications to the game and its components without compromising the integrity of the Online game. Modding is a big part of our studio’s legacy and we’re excited to see what you guys create. Check out this thread to learn about Oppie85’s Central Train Station, which you can put into your game right now, and if you’re interested in making your own content take a look at the Modding Policy. To get you started, we will be rolling out a series of tutorials from the studio that surfaces how we’ve created some of the content that you’ve seen so far in hopes of inspiring your creativity.

So that’s it from me for the time being. Keep an eye out for more information on Offline shortly. We’ll be releasing more information on how it all works. And as always, get in touch with me on Twitter @EAGamer, I’m always eager to read your feedback.

From me, and everyone at the studio, thank you again for staying with us. We look forward to getting Offline for SimCity into your hands as soon as possible.

Author: 
General Manager of the Maxis Emeryville studio Patrick Buechner
Date: 
Monday, January 13, 2014 - 05:00
Category: 
Friendly id: 
simcity-offline-is-coming
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Comments

They said the same thing about offline.

You naysayers are ridiculous! We got what we asked for so I am thankful! THANK YOU FOR THIS DEVELOPERS!!!!! DON'T LISTEN TO THESE NEGATIVE PEOPLE.

These "negative" people are the reason that you have an offline mode in the first place. If they hadn't complained about Maxis designing what used to be an offline title around online multiplayer and if they hadn't hacked the game to show how online was never required then they never would have bothered releasing an offline mode.

Unlikely. Show some evidence.

"With the way that the game works, we offload a significant amount of the calculations to our servers so that the computations are off the local PCs and are moved into the cloud"
- Maxis, 2013

They said it was impossible for the game to work offline, people complained for months on end, then they finally decided to make an offline mode.

Ah "el bear thing" - Responded to one of your posts earlier. Now reading further down the thread and seen some more of your replies to other people -I've realized I've wasted my time as it's become apparent that you're an idiot.
Silly me - won't make that mistake again.

...and please also add subway system to the city. That would be awesome :)

You know you can bury roads and rails now and place another road right on top of that buried portion? Sure, it isn't exactly like a subway, but very functionally similar and can cross the entire city underground. In the expansion, there is an above ground, raised transportation system (not the obvious one in the screen shots that hook into buildings) that can run as the crow flies or along streets, again, functionally similar to subways. But that is if you want to shell out the $$$. I actually like the expansion.

Cool :)

I will keep playing online, but hopefully this means more sales.

OK, you got me, Maxis, EA.... I am going to NOW buy the whole thing, base game, current expansions, future.

This is all that stopped me before. Thanks.

It is not known yet when it will be released. So wait with buying, cos the maps are still way too small.

Offline Mode = Bigger Maps?

I like the Pro spin the marketing department have added to the statement. Rather than saying sorry for being so stupid in the first place, or apologizing for lying about so much of it, they have spun it as "an exciting new feature" and no mention that they were more or less backed into a corner into doing it.

The only cloud that was ever behind this is one that predominantly contains methane and has a faint brown tinge to it.

This whole debacle is a shame really as at one point I was very much looking forward to this game, but now I doubt I would even bother if I saw it on humblebundle.com in a pack with 4 other games for $3. Publishers these days have the console mindset, and even if this game was never intended for a console, the sheer lack of size and scale and complexity shows this mentality. It is conceivable that had the PC release gone well then a console debut might have followed.

Finally I can travel playing in my ultrabook on bus, train or airplane.
So, the only thing now are Bigger Maps, but, now modders can do this for us without compromise the servers stability.

But, you can do this too (bigger maps), only for the offline play, think about it guys, with it, players will return to love you, if you put option, players can select regions with small, medium or bigger maps, so, if a player have a low/mid end PC, he can still play with the small maps, thats all, the game will sell again and money will come for you.

Great!!! Now you'll get my money and that of thousands of players who were waiting for the offline to happen. Thanks!!!!!!

Thank you for the update. Please keep them coming, I agree with Nicky a great DLC would be a subway system! But, didn't we have this in prior SimCities anyway?

That said, offline mode was only a real issue when the servers didn't work. Now that they are working its less concerning. What is very concerning is the city size! You guys need to rethink your strategy here. If the engine can't handle larger maps than fix the engine OR raise the recommended (not required) system specs. This way those with lower systems can still play the game as it is today, but those with faster systems can enjoy the larger maps.

I really don't understand why you can't just release one region with a larger map to shut us all up? Maybe as an optional download with much higher system requirements clearly stated?

Don't make us pay money for something like subways, which should have been in the game to begin with. It makes no sense that they weren't included.

so I cant play simcity on ultra anymore people will regulate themselves lag is a funny thing its gets progressively worse in some cases it just doesn't appear

It's too late... The Simcity series is simply ruined for me. If I could have gotten a refund from origin store, I would.

The one thing this whole "offline mode" proves ... how needed gamers are. Even more so than the Sims in SimCity.

authorized person; hello
Turkish SimCity game is going to be? :( :( :( :( :(

I'm still going to play both online and offline. I've made by best region ever online and will play offline whenever I lose internet (or just to try it out.).

Now we need bigger maps, and I know you guys said our computers can't handle it, but for the small amount of people who have really good computers, and in the future, most people with an average computer... this will make SimCity the best SimCity ever.

I'm pleased to hear this news. I've really enjoyed the SimCity series in the past, but I was sorely disappointed with the always on DRM model, so I never pursued this latest version any further. Once this update is released, I'll at least consider getting it, assuming that the reviews of the Offline experience are better than the previous always online version. Hopefully the issues with city sizes, and the balance issues that necessitated sharing resources with other cities, will be resolved to allow cities to grow to the scale that SimCity 4 allowed.

Now dd larger map sizes so it can really be called Sim CITY and not Sim Towns.

Now dd larger map sizes so it can really be called Sim CITY and not Sim Towns.

Too late EA, too late.

So......when are you closing the servers??

This is good for business. I hope first mod i see are larger city plots or even turning an entire rgion into one big city plot :D

And of course this won't save this version from being the WORSE Simcity EVER.

And of course this won't save this version from being the WORSE Simcity EVER.

everybody wants bigger maps include me...but,we have to thank to Maxis that they listened us and decided correct decisions about this subject...if we want bigger maps,we have to say it to the developers...the dev team must listen us...cos modders are also players who wanted bigger maps as well...i'm thinking that the dev team or dev modders whatever they called themselves,will create or make wonderful things for us...speaking of which,multiplayer lovers,you don't have to be worry about servers are going to be abandoned...online lovers will continue to play as well...don't give negative comments about this...we wanted it,we've discussed that Maxis had to make offline gameplay when the game released,aren't we?...otherwise,it will be a conflict between people want offline and online players...if online gameplay was great or something else,why you wanted that Maxis must make offline gameplay?...the majority accept offline gameplay,but minority against strictly...this is the conflict...so,don't comment then!...it's not your business...i don't wanna play my game online and i don't wanna share my cities freights,or other things...i'm not responsible to share my things...

Too late. Sim City was one of my favourite games, and with all the stupidity, I forgot about it.
It's too late to care.
Next time, don't lie to your customers trying to enforce control over them.
Reduce your 3D designs so your map sizes can be bigger again and big enough to be called 'city' instead of 'town'
More options.
Gameplay > Graphics.
Good luck getting me back as a future customer.

That won't help much, since I won't be playing the game again unless you increase the city-size. Its incredible that you still haven't listened to the criticism and got this game fixed.

Too late.

You told us that the engine was built to require connections to the cloud and that offline mode was not possible during development, how is it now you have managed to "change" this?

I cannot state enough how impressed I am with this response to a bad start. I am only saddened that so many are so blinded by their hatred for EA that they cannot see the love being poured into these efforts to make amends.

The response is hoping people ignore how they said that offline was simply not possible and how modders revealed how that was not true.

The only apology in the post is for not saying Happy New Year. They then attempt flattery to the modding community that they ignored until now, the modding community that was strong in the past titles and was incredibly annoyed by the online only decision when it was announced.

A good response to the bad start would be apologizing for making the game online only until now when it never required such a thing and be honest about why they made it online only in the first place.

"With the way that the game works, we offload a significant amount of the calculations to our servers so that the computations are off the local PCs and are moved into the cloud"
- Maxis, 2013

Really Maxis? Really? Are you joking? Do you seriously have no shame whatsoever? Seriously I'm laughing in my chair watching this train-wreck of a game and the company behind it try to regain SOME semblance of respect from its former fans. You're not even going to address the blatant lies you told us for months on end? The false advertising about the "Glassbox" engine, and how you refused to admit to us that the game could easily run offline, even after modders proved it takes very little work to do so? This is pathetic. You're entire company is a joke. If this were any other industry, your peers in other companies would be laughing at your immaturity, incompetency, and inability to even disguise your lack of passion for what you do. Do you even understand the overwhelming negative reaction that comes from everything you say? Do you wonder why? Because you refuse to even give us the slightest bit of dignity and respect by apologizing to us, by admitting that you lied through your teeth about the servers being stable and about the offline mode.

How can you look at yourselves and call yourselves "game developers"? Or even competent businessmen? This repeated disrespect and lack of talent can only sustain you for so long, and as you quickly become the laughing stock of the gaming (And business) world, you'll continue to see your stocks fall and wonder why the public hates you so much.

So I urge you, at least take a STEP toward regaining our respect....and apologize to us. Because no matter how you twist it in your head and make us seem like we're "asking for too much", or "got what we deserved by buying an EA game in the first place", we DO deserve an apology.

I'm waiting.

The whole thing from day one has been about how you define "significant", honestly. The region, the market, the leaderboards, the player-to-player communication... these were all done by the cloud, and not on the local machines. To the game developers' vision of a connected multiplayer game, these calculations were significant, because the game wouldn't work as designed without it. So to create a single player version now, they've had to re-build/re-implement these features and remove some aspects. It wasn't as simple as flipping a switch, because the cloud had been part of the plan from the get-go, which is what they were trying to explain at the time. It was a required, integral part of the original game as designed.

The way the statement was interpreted by some was a technical statement, like "oh, your computers are *too weak* to run the game; nothing would work without the cloud", but everyone knew from the get-go that the city itself ran locally, and it communicated with the servers to calculate the region and do multiplayer/sync/save. Now normally, due to the misunderstanding that the statement caused, they might have clarified what was meant... but as we continue to see by the enraged attitude, it was pretty fruitless. So they ended up just leaving that statement out there, went back to work, and now re-implemented the parts of the game that needed to be in order to make this possible. This isn't intended to contradict Lucy's statement in the past, but angry people will continue to interpret it that way forever.

So the lesson learned to Maxis/EA, anyway, is that execs shouldn't make technical-sounding statements without being extremely precise in terms of what they mean by it. The amount of drama caused by this one statement way exceeds the value of what she was intending to communicate by it. She simply should have said it differently.

AT LAST!

One step closer to making this a great game!

Finally! Now I can have local regions to build my own towns and experiment, and have multiplayer cities!

Now I must get back to-WAIT. You said tutorials on building content for the game?! TELL ME MORE! MOAR!

Offline mode will not change a thing. This game is broken and Maxis knows it. I am not going indepth about all the issues because they are well known. The EA/Maxis PR machine running wild again trying to cover up their past blunders and presenting this as some kind of new hot feature. The fact you need month after month for this to work shows your incompetence as a gamedeveloper and makes me feel ashamed to be part of the industry.

Lucy Bradshaw isn't it time for a new apology? Good to see your awake, thank you for making the game a game and not a waste of money.

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU
praise the gaming lords.
now if we could just get maps with bigger city plots ;)

Yes, now I am going to buy the game!

Too little, too late.

You can guarantee that the first mods people will make are a map size increase a removal of specialisation restrictions and a savage removal of whatever DRM you don't have the good grace to finally remove.

Yeah, okay, that's nice.

I'll be waiting over there for Tropico 5 and Sims 4.

I would just like to thanks Maxis for not standing up to EA and finishing the game like it was suposed to rather then releasing a stolen broken toy with promises of gold. El Dorado stories never made people rich in the end, it only cost them.
And to EA I would just like to say: Growing up and seeing EA turn from the Number One competitor on the game market to the broken down, meth shooting, school drop out it turned into. I used to be proud to buy and own an EA game. Nowadays I barely dare to talk about you guys, let alone your games. Thank god you guys have people like Bioware running around.. and I wish I could say 'people like critereon'... but you blew that already.
Quit pressuring to get games to release and finish them first. Battlefield turned into a CoD copy, Need for Speed turned into the lamest arcade racer where it was measured against GT back in the days... Sim City used to be the high end City Simulator, and I could go on about alot of your titles. But my point is made, hopefully.

I hope this post doesn't get deleted as a 'hate-post' but gets used as an example of how one of your true loyal followers turned to hate the company he grew up to love.

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