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59 of 65 people found the following review helpful
on August 29, 2013
I downloaded the game directly from the EA site, not from Amazon, but I wanted to review in case people are curious.

I had no problems downloading or installing it. I also had no problems connecting to the servers, which I know has been a big complaint. It takes 5, maybe 10, seconds to find a server and then it's good to go. I don't know if other people are still having issues, but so far it has been fine for me (I will update if this changes). The game also runs fine. It's very fast, and I've had no graphics issues. (I don't think the graphics are terribly impressive, but I haven't seen any glitches or anything).

I'm only giving it 3 stars because after a few hours of play, I'm already kind of getting sick of it. I can't really pinpoint a specific problem, but it's just not as fun as I remember Sim City 4 being. For instance, there are a lot of potential interactions with neighbor cities, but there is no way to just put a pre-made city into the region (or at least I haven't found one, feel free to correct me if I'm wrong). It's a shame because I don't really want to play with other people and I don't really want to be the mayor of multiple cities at the same time. I'd rather focus on my one city and have other automatic cities to trade with. If I recall correctly, Sim City 4 had this feature. I'm having a hard time pinpointing other specific problems with it, but...it's just not that fun.

To be fair, I've only played it for a few hours, so maybe there is more fun to be discovered, but so far I'm not terribly impressed. I'll update if anything major changes.

Update: Some other complaints--
-It's sometimes hard to place an item because for some reason you have to click the trackpad button really hard, and often several times. I don't know what the story is with that, but it's annoying. To be fair, it's possible that this is a computer issue, but I have not had this issue with any other program, so I don't think there's anything wrong with my laptop.
-The city size is really small. After only a few hours of play, I've filled it up. Not sure where to go from here.
-There's no back/undo button. If you accidentally click something, you're out of luck. You can either keep it or bulldoze it (which does not give you your money back).

Update (8/31/13): I played the game for several hours today and in some ways it got better, but some ways got worse.

First, after being able to play for 2 days without an issue, all of the sudden it started freezing. I would get the "rainbow wheel" and the music would keep playing, but the game would be frozen. I would have to shut the game and restart my computer to get it to work again. This started happening every few minutes, and then eventually stopped happening more than every hour or two. My laptop almost never freezes (I can probably count on my fingers the number of times it's frozen in the 2 years I've had it), so I do not think that it is an issue with my laptop.

On the bright side, it's a little more fun than I originally thought, and I did start using the region, but there are still major issues. Basically, playing with a region can be fun, but it's still way too limited. When I first read complaints about the city sizes being so small, I didn't really understand why it was that big of a deal. But it really is. You can fill your city up in an hour of play, and then you're basically left obsessively figuring how the *exact* right way to bulldoze and replace roads so that higher density apartment buildings can go up. Otherwise there's no way to increase your population and deal with the constant demand for more residential zoning (mine are always begging for that). Maybe some people enjoy the road planning part of the game enough so that that would be fun, but I would rather not spend half the game worrying about whether my roads are one click too close together. You also run out of room for stuff like garbage dumps way too quickly.

So, the small city size means that you have to develop other cities in the region to share resources. In some ways that's fun. But if you really want to build up one city to be the best that it can be, it is really annoying to have to stop and go build other smaller cities just so that they can take your garbage or supply commuters. Basically I spent a couple hours trying to build an awesome city. Then it filled up and it's getting harder and harder to find ways to increase the population. I'm going to have to start over and make a new city soon, which to me, is not how the game is meant to be played.

An easy fix to this would be to give people the option of having larger cities. That way you could utilize the region if you want, or focus on one giant city if you'd rather play that way. As of now, that is impossible.
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27 of 28 people found the following review helpful
on September 11, 2013
I have been an avid fan of SimCity since the first version premiered. This, IMO, is the least enjoyable of them all, by far. I wish I would have paid attention to the countless negative reviews and not made the purchase, but I didn't - only because I can't play 4 on my newer Mac. I love some of the ideas within this game, like adding on to many of the civic buildings. That is a great feature, so for example, you can have one large police station instead of 6 small ones. I also like the Sandbox mode which allows you to easily use cheat codes to build your city faster. For me, I have always liked the design aspect of the game much more than the city management aspect. The problem is the complete lack of space. You have NO ROOM to build. For example, the first thing I did in my city was build a grand square in the center. When I was done, the square alone took up 1/4 of the total building space, if not more. When you have a city full, advisers keep telling you that you need this and that, but there is no room to put this and that. I feel like if I put down everything needed to build the great works, or satisfy the citizens, I would have no citizens because I would have to eliminate all the residential areas. HUGE EPIC FAIL on the part of EA. Take my advice and do not purchase.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on December 10, 2013
I have been a loyal SimCity acolyte ever since its inception in 1992 when I was 10 years old. This newest edition has tons of potential but it has been squandered in the name of ____________ fill-in-the-blank. I purchased this edition and the future expansion pack and have logged well over 200 hours on the game. I have deleted both from my machine and do not plan on playing them again. This edition is a failed enterprise for the following reasons:

1. Still too many glitches, freezing, crashing, etc.

Much of the freezing and crashing is probably due to the incompetence of EA's various servers where SimCity is hosted; no server seems to be devoid of these issues. In the past, SimCity could be installed onto your local machine and was only limited by either the games built in capabilities or that of your personal computer. Now it is limited to EA's computing capability. Many have assumed, and probably rightly so, that the decision to "jail" SimCity on EA's servers was intended to thwart software piracy but in time I believe EA will learn that although they may have been successful in that primary goal, they will disenfranchise many acolytes such as myself in the long haul.

Glitches:

Homeless: Once the homeless establish themselves in your city, they are impossible to eradicate, congregating in parks and abandoned buildings lowering land value and forcing decent sims to leave the city. Even demolishing the entire city (which is no easy task) and starting anew does not solve this issue. There is no option to build a homeless shelter or other services to rehabilitate your homeless sims.

Crime: The police data view will state several criminals-at-large and flash warnings about the dangerous crime levels in the city, yet the data map will show that crime and criminals are absent or very near null. No amount of police stations, precincts, LawDrones, and detective wings can resolve this issue.

Solid Waste Management: The garbage tab will purport that not all garbage and recycling is being collected but the data view will reveal this to be false and show the city devoid of excess cans. Furthermore, the Recycling Center claims that its various product recovery lines are full but clicking on the center will reveal otherwise.

Megatowers: Some Megatowers with apartment or mall levels with the same prosperity rating (land value) will remain unhappy and claim not enough shoppers or not enough shopping and sims will move out putting your Megatower finances into the red on an hourly basis, which could eventually bankrupt your city.

2. Mayoral success is hampered by superfluous "disasters" which include earthquakes, tornadoes, UFO's, and large destructive robots and lizards.

No real city, past, present, or future has or will experience the inordinate amount of disasters perpetrated upon successful cities with such frequency as in this version of SimCity. The fantastical disasters do not suit my mayoral city-building desires. Earthquakes and tornadoes I can accept, but only with low frequency and only in select cities, as in real life. Flight simulators mimic real-life flight as closely as possible; as Wikipedia puts it: "A simulation game attempts to copy various activities from 'real life'". SimCity falls incredibly short in this regard.

3. City Size

As others have noted, the playing field is much too small and you quickly run out of building space. I'm not sure why EA reduced the city size in this edition but I can only assume it was to minimize the processing and storage requirements on their host servers for each end user. It appears they attempted to remedy the small city size with the density capabilities of the zones and with Megatowers but this has been unsuccessful.
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44 of 52 people found the following review helpful
on August 29, 2013
My MacBook is from 2010 and the game automatically sets the graphics at the lowest possible settings (it warned me (after I bought the game and installed it, of course) that even though my Mac exceeds the minimum settings required, it will still operate at a "suboptimal" level). If you up the settings, the game is slow, lags, and is nearly unplayable. If you leave the graphics settings on low then you are playing something that looks so basic and ridiculous that you will look upon a Flash game with a sense of utter wonder.

I absolutely regret spending money on this. The minimum settings listed on the EA website are extremely misleading. Simcity's days are numbered.
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on August 31, 2013
Choppy graphics make this game unplayable in my Macbook Air bought in 2012. 80% of the screen is not viewable because of distorted graphics. Columns/streaks of green lines all across the screen.

Moreover dealing with EA/Origin customer support has been a harrowing experience. They are unreachable and if you get Live Chat support you get contradictory information than what's stated on their website. I was also on hold for more 90 mins after I called by phone but eventually gave up since nobody was picking up. EA support website is also circuitous and unhelpful.
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25 of 30 people found the following review helpful
on August 29, 2013
Before you buy the game, you must upgrade to Mountain Lion....The Intel HD 3000 video card driver version provided by Apple for OS X Lion will cause graphical errors and corruption with SimCity. Please upgrade to OS X Mountain Lion or a newer version of OS X to prevent these errors. [2005]
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on March 7, 2014
I was nervous about buying this because of all the bad reviews.
First off, I have had no problems with the servers. Also, the simcity people have been working on an offline version.
I never played the old simcity games, so I can't compare it to them. In this game you don't focus on one single city, you create multiple. You work with all the cities to create a functioning region. You have to decide how to manage the space in each city, so its smart to give each one its own specialization.
I find this game really fun. I have had hardly any glitches, and the ones that I did have did not affect game play at all.
This game had problems when it first came out. They have been fixed. This game is fun and does not deserve the level of hate that it seems to be getting. It is not the funnest game in the world, but it is very fun.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on August 31, 2013
I just downloaded it (complicated, long task) and it works FINE.
But, who cares about that? It is so boring. I have SC 1, 2, 3, 4, and now 5. So many fun features are missing and I really hate the "sewage" function, which seems geared to pre-adolescent boys. I have played it a few times and that's enough.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on August 31, 2013
This awesome game has been ruined by whoever made the stupid decision to force always online and origin. I spent 3 hours trying to download origin on my mac but it wouldn't let me because it said i didn't give it permission, which i did multiple times. I go to EA communities and there is a bunch of people with the same problem but no one to help. I guess i wont be buying this game or any other EA game, stupid companies like this don't deserve my hard earned money. Horrible PC launch and you would think they delayed the mac version because they anted it to be perfect, well think again, it is worst than the PC launch.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on August 31, 2013
Well, it's meh. I didn't have any problems downloading or installing, nor am I having connection or graphics issues. It looks beautiful. Well done there. On the other hand, the scope of the game itself is pretty limited, not to mention the fact that the maps are teeny-tiny. And, uh, no subways, still, really? 3 hours into a city and everything is gridlocked with no transit options.

TL;DR not worth $40 or the $500 EA will charge you to make it fun.
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