Earlier this week, we brought news that SimCity developer Maxis was looking to add mod support to their online simulation game. Although Maxis wouldn’t outright say User Generated Content was coming to SimCity, a detailed forum post suggested they were exploring the option.
Today, Maxis has taken things a step further, and released a lengthy blog post that, in no uncertain terms, claims they are bringing mod support to SimCity. But first, they are looking to have an open discussion with their player base to better understand what they want.
In addition to confirmation of mod support, Maxis also teased one of the most oft-requested SimCity features: an offline mode. In fact, had the game launched with an offline mode, EA might not have earned the title of Worst Company in America for the second year in a row.
As with past offline mode teases, Maxis is not ready to make a formal announcement, but they realize this is something gamers want. After all, hackers have shown us that the game seems to run perfectly fine while offline. More importantly, they acknowledge that even though most of the server problems with SimCity (see: the launch failure of SimCity) are behind them, players would still like to play without connecting to the Internet.
Some other SimCity elements the blog post touches upon include traffic, bigger cities, the ‘Cities of Tomorrow’ expansion, and the seven major updates that have hit SimCity thus far. It’s quite the humbling statement, as Maxis acknowledges the errors of their ways.
Their talk of traffic in particular seems to suggest that Maxis was looking to try new things and, for lack of a better term, failed. They saw traffic as a challenge, but not one that would undermine the fun of the game. Granted, Maxis has since improved car and bus behavior, but the game still launched with a substantially “broken” mechanic.
In addition to talk of new potential features, Maxis also wants SimCity players to know that, although the Cities of Tomorrow is a primary focus for Maxis, that expansion is in development with a different team. The core game is still getting all of the attention it needs.
Nearly seven months after the launch of SimCity it seems like Maxis is finally working towards some features gamers have been requesting since launch. Whether or not that will help lure gamers back, however, is yet to be seen.
What other changes would you like to see Maxis add to SimCity? Is an offline mode at the top your list?
SimCity — Cities of Tomorrow releases November 12, 2013.