Maxis says the troubled launch of SimCity is being rectified, but the developer isn't ready to give the "all-clear" just yet.
Maxis general manager Lucy Bradshaw has said the "core problem" of being able to actually connect to the game is "almost behind us." Game crashes have been reduced by 92 percent from day one, according to Bradshaw, and nearly 8 million hours of gameplay time have been logged in total.
Bradshaw says server architectures have been optimised and response times shortened, and Maxis has released a number of patches to help makes things easier; the latest, patch 1.4, fixes the problem of the game getting stuck when switching servers.
The updates mean that Maxis is now "getting virtually everyone into the game," but the developer is not yet ready to issue an "all-clear" for SimCity just yet. "We need a few more days of data before we can assure you that the problem is completely solved and the game is running at 100 percent," says Bradshaw.
GameSpot UK's Danny O'Dwyer, Chris Beaumont, and I were all playing last night on various European servers, but with occasional connectivity errors.
SimCity, which requires a constant connection to the game's servers in order to function, has suffered from major issues since its launch in the US last Tuesday, and claims that the UK launch would go by without a hitch were proved wrong before the end of its first day on sale. EA has switched off some of the game's features to help the servers cope and will offer a free game to anyone who has purchased SimCity to apologise for the inconvenience.
Finally, Bradshaw once again apologised for the game's tumultuous launch. "You bought the game with the understanding that we'd quickly fix the server issues. For that support--that incredible commitment from our fans--we are deeply grateful. As the general manager of Maxis, I want you to know that we cherish your faith in us, and the love you've shown for this franchise," she said.