EA encourages SimCity modding with limitations, still considering offline mode

SimCity developer asks modders to maintain the integrity of the game.

A blog post on SimCity's official site encourages players to create and download mods for the game, but asks that they do not "jeopardize the integrity of the gameplay or harm the experience of others."

The post by the SimCity development team says that Maxis and Electronic Arts have a long tradition of supporting the modding community, which they wish to extend to SimCity as well, but only if they follow a list of rules.

The rules are largely predictable, asking modders not to add copyrighted or adult material into the game, and prohibiting them from selling the content they create. EA reserves the right to stop players from distributing any mods that violate these rules.

More vague is the rule against mods that impact the simulation of multiplayer games and features, such as leaderboards or trading with other players. SimCity players have been vocal about their issues with some basic design decisions in the game, and would presumably enjoy mods that change them. The rules don't make it clear that such mods would be allowed.

Also limiting modders is that SimCity still doesn't have an offline mode, though a recent post from the development team on EA's official forums says that it's still exploring one, as it "will give our players more room to experiment."

In March 2013, EA said that an offline mode didn't fit with its vision for the game. In October 2013, after a strong response from the player community, Maxis said it was looking into adding an offline mode.

At the Game Developers Conference 2012, SimCity creative director Ocean Quigley (who has since left EA) said that the he and his team are huge fans of the modding community and that they've "designed all this stuff to be moddable."

You can find SimCity's official modding policy here.

Written By

Want the latest news about SimCity?

SimCity

SimCity

Discussion

151 comments
holtrocks
holtrocks

I really hope some bigger city plots will be added.

ewjiml
ewjiml

I am so confused....how can Maxis encourage players to mod the game when you are still required to be online all the time?  You might as well "encourage" a blind man to go a see a movie. 

brynhyfryd
brynhyfryd

just fix simcity 4 and release a expansion by adding the following:-


1.Curvy roads

2.Graphics lift

3.Add NAM transport options

4.Bug fixes


Call it Simcity 4.5 Expansion pack. Once complete, just kill simcity 2013

AlexFili
AlexFili

"Considering?", "Exploring?", these are not words that should be used AFTER the release of a game. This is why you do beta tests and this is why you ASK the audience what they want before the game is released. There's no point trying to fix something that is inadequate and has garnered so much dislike. Their best bet is to make a fresh start and distance themselves from DRM as much as possible.

bloody-hell
bloody-hell

Still always online DRM, not playable offline, Origin client and EA account requirement, absolutely broken RCI model, tiny "city" areas, nonsensical agent AI, ...

Who in their right mind would create a mod for this mess, knowing they aren't allowed to fix any of the major issues the game has ?


The modding scene for SimCity 4 on the other hand is still going strong, perhaps EA / Maxis should ask themselves why - Playable offline, no DRM, no separate account requirement, no separate launcher, big buildable city areas, ...


If Maxis would have any love for what they're doing, they'd quit EA, open their own dev studio and develop, then self-publish a "SimCity" (not under that name for obvious reasons) independently, but I think they'd rather keep sucking on EA's tits as long as they get paid. (understandable to some degree)

Whatever, there's no coming back for EA or any of their owned studios, they're too narrow minded and on their investor's leash, it's just a painful (to watch) and slow death.

Sundberg_man
Sundberg_man

The most disappointing game of 2013 imo. :(

MN121MN
MN121MN

"EA said that an offline mode didn't fit with it's vision of the game" - Well sorry EA, but Maxis is the developer, and it seems you have different opinions.

syseong
syseong

No offline mode, very small map... this game is no better than SimCity4...

bernard978
bernard978

They don't want modding because they don't want their games to last, they don't want an offline mode because they want to take the servers off for them so people buy the newer ones.


I thought for a moment that EA were going to change once I saw their Origin guarantee and Humble Bundle, but I guess old habits die hard or don't die at all.

Thanatos2k
Thanatos2k

EA is absolutely clueless.  There should be no limits to modding.  You should be able to change your game any way you want to.  If you want to cheat?  Fine.  Completely change the game?  Great!  After all, modders might be able to discover a completely different game lurking underneath your shitty exterior.


But EA doesn't want that.  EA wants control over your experience.  Offline mode threatens their ability to subjugate you with DRM.  Mods jeopardize their ability to sell you DLC when the mods are better than anything they produce.


And that's why they're the Worst Company in America.

bouchart
bouchart

Games discouraging others from playing Simcity, still not considering buying EA games.

El_Zaggy
El_Zaggy

They have no plans for offline mode. Theya re saying this because they think people that wants the offline mode will get tricked by buying the game 'before' theres an offline mode. There wont be. And I got tricked by EA by buying BF4. Right now, I cant play it 5 minutes without crashing. So EA can kiss my a..

TheLeftHandDoom
TheLeftHandDoom

EA: integrity of gameplay :: Barack Obama: (1) you can keep your insurance; (2) I'll shut down Guantanamo; (3) End war in Afghanistan; (4) transparent administration;

PETERAKO
PETERAKO

"jeopardize the integrity of the gameplay or harm the experience of others."

Simcity merely existing has done that. I don't give a flying rat's ass if the gameplay is modded to improvement that displeases the facebook crowd that plays this game and apparently enjoys to build cities and just an hour or two.

"will give our players more room to experiment."

I REFUSE to believe that they thought of this now! They knew pretty darn well that(contrary to every trailer) the new simcity was going to be not even half of what the previous games were in terms of sheer content creation and experimentetion. They instead prefered to make a huge ass diservice to the city building crowd, limiting it to online only, forcing social interaction, downgrading city size and having DLCs that are imbalanced or tottaly meaningles.


All that in favor of some lousy clueless greedy investors

 

Ayato_Kamina_1
Ayato_Kamina_1

The whole point of modding is that you can create ANYTHING and download these mods and use them. It's the experimenting and discovering mods that makes it fun. 'I can't believe they made that a mod' is one of the best things someone can say about a mod. Then there's the practical improving ones that make the game much better.


Look at the number of games that have been released due to the modding community.

helldragonzer
helldragonzer

OMG there is so much bulls**t in this article my PC started to smell bad.

LickTheEnvelope
LickTheEnvelope

Had to laugh at 'maintain the integrity of the game'.  I suppose that means modders will completely ignore requests from other users, charge extra, then release the mods weeks before they are ready without properly testing them.  EA has all these lovely IP's and don't seem to have a clue how to develop games anymore.  It's really quite astounding.

vadagar1
vadagar1

oh EA 


u just fail to realise that in order to ensalve people u have to give them the "illusion" of freedom :D


ur just retarded....

just give people what they want then u can rape them, and beat them, and set them on fire...etc and they will love u for it


NO they will PAY U for it

Sam_021
Sam_021

Crysis 3, Simcity then Battlefield 4, there is no way I'm going to purchase anything from them ever again.

Martyr77
Martyr77

I have been boycotting EA for 2 years now. Haven't regretted one second of it. EA is terrible for the future of gaming.

St0Ne4Ge
St0Ne4Ge

Just stfu about this game and kill it with fire already. I don't even have the will to rant and moan about it anymore.

DarkSaber2k
DarkSaber2k

"The post by the SimCity development team says that Maxis and Electronic Arts have a long tradition of supporting the modding community"

My god they just can't help themselves can they, I think EA might be a compulsive liar.

demondogx
demondogx

well im ''still concidering'' to not boycut EA anymore

Hurvl
Hurvl

With this being always online I can see why they want to limit modding, but the beauty of modding is that anything can be added to a game. Since it's not part of the original game, no one has to add anything they don't want to add. At least that works well with SP offline games, like Skyrim. I guess we won't be seeing buildings formed as Randy "Macho Man" Savage, then :P.

DeadManRollin
DeadManRollin

I can't wait to play this game. 

But I have been waiting for them to come to their senses and make an offline mode. I just hate it when I can't play Diablo 3 and download at the same time. Always online games are a bad, bad idea which needs to go. 

jeremyc99999
jeremyc99999

It's like giving a kid a toy and telling them EXACTLY how to play with it.

JSusie
JSusie

I got this game for super cheap when it first came out, because I got like 25 bucks off for buying soap on Amazon on something like that.


I still felt robbed what a waste of hard drive space.

---Cipher---
---Cipher---

What is there to consider for the offline mode? You already told us there can be no offline version because our computers can't handle it...

lazycomplife
lazycomplife

They should make it free to play like SWTOR, which is another online EA game that failed miserably.  Or they could, indeed, put it offline, which is what everyone has wanted since the very beginning.  However, knowing EA, they'll just shut the servers down in a few years and pretend the game never happened, thus screwing everyone that bought the game even further.

nazart81
nazart81

make the maps bigger and maybe i'll play it again. but I ain't paying a cent for bigger maps dlc. uh uh.

deadpen
deadpen

Will someone mod it to be about to use the 100,000 square miles of unusable land on the map!

Paul2004
Paul2004

They still havent added an offline mode to this yet ?, wasnt that hacked ages ago so why is it taking so long for the official one ?. They can say what the will but ppl's gonna mod any game, regardless if they agree or not. Once somethings been put on the net you cant stop it, only increase interest :P

sakaixx
sakaixx

when the game runs it is actually a good game but the thing is, you quickly run out of space to built in game. hope modders thinker a way to bypass the limitation of space, its just too limited.

Terminalrex
Terminalrex

@ewjiml @ewjiml  they are releasing an off-line mode, which means you are no longer required to be online all the time, it should have been the case since release but apparently EA didn't know there target audience very well.. 

Stepn2myworld
Stepn2myworld

@flamingboard So, true. EA, owner of some of those prized franchises, can't get out there own way. I thought Simcity was dead after the disaster that was Simcity Societies. However, EA went even bigger in their aim to truly finish off series this time. 


Even though they have the tools to take the noose from around Simcity's throat (handing it to the modding community), they  refuse to take their hands off the trap door release lever.

Thanatos2k
Thanatos2k

@MN121MNUh....Maxis is owned by EA.  Maxis developers were the ones who said it didn't fit with the vision.

Stepn2myworld
Stepn2myworld

@syseong Simcity 4 kills this Simcity in every way imaginable. Plus, Simcity 4 has a vibrant modding community, taking the game well past Maxis what Maxis imagined. 

Stepn2myworld
Stepn2myworld

@Thanatos2k No truer statements than what you said about DRM and DLC. MOST of the free DLC (modding community-created) for Simcity 4 triumphs anything commercially released DLC for this Simcity.

R4gn4r0k
R4gn4r0k

@DeadManRollin Same here, but I don't want to end up buying it, with the servers shutting down just a while after.

So I'm only going to consider buying it if they add an offline mode (and larger cities)

Hurvl
Hurvl

@jeremyc99999Yeah, it's a buzzkill when someone says "you can create new content for this game, but..." and then lists (more or less vague) rules you need to follow. You take away one of the greatest things about modding when you limit - that sweet anarchy. Of course, it's not good to use mods that compromise other players experience, but that's what a freakin' offline mode is for, goddammit!

syseong
syseong

@Stepn2myworld@syseong To me, the new SimCity is just feel more like a city scenery generator, however the SimCity 4 is really a superb city planning strategy game.