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SimCity 4 - Mac

by Aspyr
Platform : Mac, Mac OS X
Rated: Everyone
36 customer reviews

Price: $68.99 + $5.99 shipping
In stock.
Usually ships within 2 to 3 days.
Ships from and sold by lakeplacegames.
  • Create and control the most life-like metropolis you can imagine
  • Take your Sims from "The Sims" into your SimCity
  • Dispatch police cruisers to fight crime, send out the Mayor's limo to quell a rioting mob, or cap an erupting volcano threatening your citizens
  • Form mountains, carve valleys, plant forests, raise oceans, and more
  • From mellow traffic flow to commuter hell, noontime crowds to nighttime calm, partygoers to troublemakers, the movement in your city is ever-changing and unpredictable
6 new from $40.00 7 used from $39.99 2 collectible from $24.99
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Product Description


It's hard to believe that creator Will Wright had trouble selling his original SimCity concept to publishers. That first game went on to fame, notoriety, and great praise--from critics, gamers, and even educators--and spawned countless imitators, not the least of which include Wright's own smaller-scale The Sims, which went on to become a phenomenon in its own right. Now on its fourth edition, SimCity returns to our hard drives, and would-be city planners everywhere will be busy for a long, long time.

SimCity 4 functions much like its predecessors. You've got the power to zone land as residential (green), commercial (blue), and industrial (yellow). You control the budget. You decide where to place crucial services like police, fire, medical, and even utilities like power and water. You place schools, parks, roads, water towers, and scenery as you accede to the many demands of your Sim citizens. Do a good job and your city will grow and the money will flow into your coffers. Do a bad job and the people will pack up and move away, leaving your city treasury in horrific debt and landing you what the game cheekily considers to be a far easier job: senator. The game requires a balancing act that takes both planning and a persnickety nature. There are charts to read, reports to watch, and, above all, needs to juggle. It's rewarding when it all comes together, and frustrating when you fail, once again, to build anything worthwhile.

That's why I wish the game came with a better manual. The included book glosses over most major information and then neglects important aspects, such as the RCI indicator (which explains zoning needs) and parts of the budget. At the very least, the manual should include tips on handling debt. There are two tutorials which cover the basics, but again, they won't help you get out of trouble once you get in too deep. You can find this information in the strategy guide, which is sold separately, but you really shouldn't have to go that route.

The graphics are amazing, showing a vibrant metropolis with scurrying traffic, wandering Sims, smoking chimneys, and sparkling lights when night falls. Fireworks reward each year of service. And wait until you see the cool disasters you can unleash if the mood strikes you--fire, lightning, tornado, volcano, and giant robot. Oddly, there's a significant performance hit even on fast systems. Thankfully, the stuttery scrolling and slow-to-respond zoom don't hurt the game too much since you can pause it at will or fast forward if you need to wait for your cash reserves to build. The most significant flaw is that the game only offers one save slot, which discourages experimentation.

Despite minor imperfections SimCity 4 is an awesome game. You can build several cities next to each other on the map and make them dependant on each other. (You can build the greater L.A. area, in other words.) You can even import your Sims from The Sims to live in your city. Such familiar characters can tell you a lot about what your city needs. Put simply, city planning has never been this fun, this challenging, or this deep. --Andrew S. Bub


  • Beautiful graphics and animation
  • Deeper and more realistic than ever before


  • Runs slowly on most systems
  • Inadequate manual

From the Manufacturer

In SimCity 4, you don't just build your city, you breathe life into it. Sculpt mountains, gouge riverbeds, and seed forests to lay the groundwork for your creation. Then construct the most realistic metropolis you can imagine. Your city comes alive with the hustle and bustle of construction crews, the snarl of traffic, and the activity of your Sims. Move your personalized Sims into your city and watch as they go about their daily lives. Build mansions on mountainsides, raise skyscrapers downtown, and build transportation networks to form a massive region of SimCities that share and compete for resources. With every decision you make, your city and your Sims will respond for better or worse. In SimCity 4, your city pulses with the life you give it.

Product Details

  • Domestic Shipping: Item can be shipped within U.S.
  • International Shipping: This item is not eligible for international shipping. Learn More
  • ASIN: B00008YGMU
  • Item Weight: 8.5 ounces
  • Media: Video Game
  • Release Date: June 20, 2003
  • Average Customer Review: 2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #39,529 in Video Games (See Top 100 in Video Games)
  • Product Warranty: For warranty information about this product, please click here
  • Discontinued by manufacturer: Yes

Customer Questions & Answers

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

175 of 182 people found the following review helpful By Kell D. Pollard on September 28, 2003
When Aspyr licensed SimCity 4 from EA Games to do a Macintosh version they quietly decided that there was no need to allow Macintosh users the one ability that makes this game a lasting favorite. While PC users are linked by a network of designers who regularly edit and release additional lots, buildings, landmarks, game enhancements and regions, Macintosh users will find themselves left out in the cold. The serial number included with the game will get you registered at Aspyr's website but will not register you with SimCity.com, the ONLY place a SimDesigner can obtain a little program called the Lot Editor which allows you design your own buildings and parks and just about anything else you can imagine. Additionally, Aspyr tells you that all the official landmarks and 3rd party buildings will work with the Macintoch version, howver they do not tell you that to recieve these extra, free landmarks from SimCity.com that you must be registered there... which you can't.
My recommendation is to NOT buy this game is you are a fan of the previous versions. Aspyr makes no apologies about the limited features in the Macintosh version and has no plans to currently resolve any of these issues. Additionally, other users who report slow game play are correct. A Dual G4 1GHz with 2GB of RAM creeps along once a city reaches 100,000 inhabitants and there are numerous visual anomalies during game play as well as unexplainable random crashes which require you to regularly reinstall the game to resolve.
While the game has lots of promise for those who enjoy this series, I find the Aspyr Macintosh version HIGHLY disappointing.
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48 of 51 people found the following review helpful By A. User on November 21, 2005
While SC4 isn't without it's flaws, Aspyr has taken pains to code windows-like interfaces for file access and skipped on making them work with the Mac file system. The game blocks many system features making it impossible to Command-Tab out to check e-mail, fast forward iTunes or whatever else you want. My attempts to contact customer support were responded to tersely and with no concern for my patronage.

But maybe you don't want to switch out of the game or customize maps. Maybe you don't want access to the Maxis conent, such as making a SC4 map of the area you live in. Did you want to play the game? You do? I hope you have 15 minutes to spare because that's the longest I've ever gotten it to run.

But there's the Rush Hour expansion... Sure it's been panned but it must stabalize the game... Nope, check the fan forums.

Once again Aspyr has taken a popular game, done a weak port and avoided all forms of support. Thay have your money, go away. My advise is to load an older version in classic and tell Maxis hat they won't get their cut from Mac games as long as they continue letting Aspyr screw their customers.
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57 of 64 people found the following review helpful By Thomas Hochmann on August 31, 2003
I've been a fan of the Sim games since the days of playing SimCity (and later, SimCity 2000) on my old 386 PC running DOS. Times have changed a lot since then, but oddly SimCity has largely stood still. SimCity 2000 was the first and only major revision to the series, and arguably was the best out of all of them. So how does SimCity 4 stack up?
SimCity 4, like SC3K before it, is largely a visual upgrade. The graphics are indeed very well done, and the game has a rich lifelike feel to it. The sound effects are top knotch as well. Cars driving around, children playing at a playground, the soft whoosh of wind power generators. Sadly the music does not match up to the quality of the sound, varying wildly between very annoying and passable. Unlike previous Sim games, there are no catchy tunes to be found here. And don't expect to play this game on a slow Mac - even my Power Mac with dual 1GHz G4s tends to chug when I change zoom levels and such.
The mechanics of the game are largely unchanged from the days of SimCity 2000: build a city, manage taxes and infrastructure, keep the Sims happy. SimCity 4 is more complicated in some ways (budgeting is more detailed, the model for residential/commercial/industrial demand is more complex, etc.) and this can make things very difficult. It took me a number of tries to build a city that wasn't burning thousands of simoleons every month. The game is still just as fun as ever, though.
Unfortunately, a number of the changes are actually omissions. Gone are the scenarios (like Dullsville), the real world cities, and the ability to generate random terrain by adjusting a few sliders. You have to custom carve each area you build a city in, unless you load up a pre-built region.
Read more ›
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By zigzagzilla on July 16, 2003
Even with SuperSaver I got this game in 1 day, which was great because I have been thirsting for the OSX version of this upgrade. I was surprised to note that it requires 2 discs, and takes about a Gig of space. There were problems loading the intro movies, but even first-run, the game worked buglessly, and my 800Mhz iBook handles the complex graphic with ease. And the graphics are complex! Even in the regional view the graphics take ones breath away. Cities are agglomerated in this region view, and interdependence is the key. It is much slower than Sc3K to develop a city, and requires a lot more input and attention, though it is equally more accurate in portraying real-mayoral duty. The transport generator is amazing, and the details are astonishing. Where I used to take a day off work to play, now I will need a week.
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