SimCity going offline ahead of major update tonight
SimCity servers will go offline tonight for approximately two hours ahead of the release of the hotly anticipated 2.0 update. A community manager for the game said in a post on the SimCity blog: “Choosing a time to issue a major update is never easy, but after looking [at] our peak player time, we’ve concluded 9pm GMT is the best window for us to make these improvements.”
As you can see below, tonight’s SimCity update will feature an extensive list of bug fixes designed to improve the game experience following last month’s disaster launch. A few weeks ago, EA restored SimCity’s fastest gameplay mode, known as Cheetah Speed, which was disabled in early March as part of the company’s efforts to cope with overwhelming demand on the game. It has also confirmed a SimCity release date of June 11 on Mac.
- Mayors Mansion: Mayors will now drive their fancy cars to work. Mayors will take their helicopter, limo, or sports car if the modules are present.
- HUD: Now colour-corrects when in a colour-blind mode.
- Data map: Data maps show the filtered colour when a colour filter is enabled (unless in a colour-blind mode)
Fixes and Updates
- Cities not Processing: Mitigates some of the issues that were causing cities not to process. We are continuing to work on and improve this issue.
- Region Filters: Now sorts regions with available cities to the top
- Invitations: Invitations to join a region should be sent and received more quickly.
- Tourism: Fixes for unexplained fluctuation of tourists. Tourists more smartly counted on transit.
- Cruise ships are now more effective at bringing medium and high wealth tourists in coastal cities.
- New tourists will now decide to come into a city once leaving tourists reach train stations, bus depots, or cruise ship docs instead of waiting for those tourists to go out to the region first.
- This change will reduce the downtime of tourist buildings.
- Casinos: Casinos tuned so that Gambling will be a more profitable speciality. Players can bulldoze and replace existing casinos to see effects of tuning.
- The larger casinos now invite more tourists into the city which helps keep them full.
- Note that existing casinos will need to be replaced to take advantage of this change.
- More Casinos: Raised module limit on Sci-Fi and Sleek Casinos to 6 modules.
- Region Play: Cash gifts can now be received in a bankrupt city.
- Education: Fixed school buses getting stuck at the high school. Existing Schools will fix themselves.
- Education: Fixed school buses picking up students at neighbouring cities that didn’t have school bus stops.
- Education: Fix to more accurately track regional student population.
- Education: Fix where kids leaving the school bus stop would teleport to the nearest pedestrian path instead of walking directly into the school.
- Education: University wings now give the proper bonus.
- Recycling: Fix for the Recycling Center where it would sometimes stop working, recycling services will visit other cities.
- Air pollution: Fixed issue where air pollution would appear to come from nowhere. Fix issues where your regional air pollution would be reflected back into your box for a double penalty.
- Fire Service: Fire Trucks don’t clump, dispatch to fires more efficiently.
- Water: Water pumps are now capable of pumping water from rivers at a larger radius so they can take better advantage of the water table in a city.
- Disasters: Cool down for random disasters: Some players were getting hit too frequently with random disasters, this introduces a cool down where no random disasters will occur.
- Trade: Fix for trade ports that suddenly stop shipping.
- Transit: Street Cars and Buses go to high volume stops first.
- Transit: A city with residents and public transit will now provide the accurate amount of workers and shoppers to its neighbours.
- Transit: A transit vehicle stuck in a pick-up or drop off loop will now go back to a garage instead of trying to pick up more people.
- Transit vehicles should recover automatically after the update. If players want to force the recovery, turn off the stops that are having looping issues, wait a few game hours, then turn them back on.
- Transit: Neighbours buses will now come in lower numbers into the city and do a better job at picking up local passengers first.
- Residential Tuning: Residential-only cities have failure state.
- Buildings are prevented from going up in density when they don’t have power or water.
- The amount of happiness gained from low taxes, police, fire, and health outreach has been lowered.
- Fixed some cases where buildings would not go abandoned when they should have.
- Higher density residential buildings are no longer blocked from going abandoned due to not having enough money.
- Happiness from low taxes does not double up every time it is given.
- Losing happiness due to not having a job is more impaction.
- Budgets: Fixed bug that prevented systems like fire, abandonment, garbage, and sewage from turning on when they were supposed to.
- Audio: Fixes issue where audio will stop working after creating a large city or where phantom audio sounds play in a city.
- Demolish: Fixes issue that occurred when players demolished buildings that had service vehicles, delivery vehicles, or agents out in the city or region. Previously, the agents would be in a state of limbo and would not recover when new buildings of that type were placed. This will no longer happen.
We said in our SimCity review: “SimCity’s a mess of moving parts, occasionally clicking into place and allowing for brilliant experiences before coming undone and tearing everything down. With updates to both server stability and the game itself, SimCity’s wonderful moments may be able to overtake the bad ones to create the best game in the series. But if those don’t come, EA’s bustling metropolis may end up a ghost town.”
By Tom Ivan