SimCity offline mode took six months to create, says lead engineer

SimCity offline mode took six months to create, says lead engineer

Maxis recently announced that its 2013 release of SimCity will, for the first time, be playable offline. The game currently requires a persistent online connection to servers in order to work, but all that's set to change with the release of Update 10. Many, including me, have wondered what's taken so long. It was a major development challenge, according to the game's lead engineer:

Lucy [Bradshaw, former Maxis general manager] once said that Offline wouldn't be possible "without a significant amount of engineering work", and she's right. By the time we're finished we will have spent over 6 ½ months working to write and rewrite core parts of the game to get this to work. Even things that seem trivial, like the way that cities are saved and loaded, had to be completely reworked in order to make this feature function correctly.

Maxis gets credit for wanting to do it right instead of half-assing a hack to get it to kind of work. But I remain steadfast in my conviction that making the game online-dependent in the first place was a critical mistake - one that cost EA and Maxis customers and goodwill.

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Peter Cohen

Mac Managing Editor of iMore and weekend Apple Product Professional at a local independent Apple reseller. Follow him on Twitter @flargh

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Reader comments

SimCity offline mode took six months to create, says lead engineer


Every SimCity game up to this latest game has been an offline game… I would've thought they would've followed suit like so many other devs before them have done and made the off-line version first with multiplayer support later.
I just hope that offline mode operates independently of the Origin service & starts the game when I click the icon & not rerouting me through the oOigin service like it does now.

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Too little, too late. First, they made the game that requires you to be online to be playable then there were a lot of server issues during the first week of launch. So sorry Maxis but it's a no for me. At least, those who already got the game will be able to play them offline after the update.