New SimCity to require constant Internet connection

Electronic Arts representative confirms players must remain online to play latest city-building game.


SimCity's 2013 return will be marked with an always-on Internet policy, an Electronic Arts representative confirmed to Joystiq.

To build cities you must have an Internet connection, says EA.
To build cities you must have an Internet connection, says EA.

The EA representative told the site that gamers will need to remain online via Origin to play SimCity, regardless of whether or not gamers purchase the title through that outlet. According to EA, an always-on connection is necessary due to the game's focus on multiplayer and worldwide economies.

On top of that, EA said SimCity will be available to purchase digitally outside of Origin. The company representative said the title will be sold through "other digital distribution platforms," but a finalized list is not yet available.

As of press time, EA had not responded to GameSpot's request for comment.

Due in 2013 for the PC and Mac, SimCity is in development at Maxis and will run on the company's new GlassBox game engine.

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Avatar image for Xaviersx

To those who want/will buy it, fine, I do wish you well, but for me, I'm not buying into this less is more future, EA can keep Simcity to itself for a number of reasons (I always play solo, so I don't need world economics, I need a solidly built single player game/sandbox) but persistent internet connection as a monitoring/drm tool is up at the top. Especially if they can't offer a persistently available server connection on their part. Some days the pirates are a few of the game players ruining it for the developers and honest players and some days the pirates are the companies, ruining it for themselves and everybody else (except the lawyers). Oh well, enough people will purchase this that it won't change anything.

Avatar image for Housesa

I was really looking forward to this game until I saw that it required a constant internet connection, won't be buying it unfortunately. If I can't play it offline, no money from me on any game, back to Civ V....

Avatar image for bnarmz

I want to build a city to MY liking. Forcing me to be connected to the net just to play a game the way I've always played it is going to be greatly problematic for many gamers.

Sometimes internet connection fail and are not an option. I should still be able to play a game i brought if my connection is not available for one reason or another. This is not a good move at all. smh, damn you, EA...

Avatar image for artaeun

I was actually going to buy this game, thought it would be great. But after this complete and utter bullsh*t, they can keep it for themselves. And they might as well go bankrupt for what i care. They've ruined all the games we (well, at least most of us) loved as kids.

Avatar image for 2muchgrdschool

And i'm out. Tried it with Diablo 3. Thought there might be something to the arguments that it was all about the multiplayer, then just realized they are full of crap. Won't be buying the Diablo 3 expansion and wont be buying sim city. Shame. I loved it as a kid.

Avatar image for rocketsatdawn

I don't support pirating but strangely I feel like giving them a pat on the shoulder and saying go for it. I am actually going to find this massively inconvenient. EA just keep putting their foot in it. It's been so long since SimCity 4 and of course a lot is going to be very different but I wasn't expecting this kind of limitation on playing it. Very annoying.

Avatar image for rocketsatdawn

That is going to be very annoying. I loose my internet connection every now and then and I was hoping to regularly use it on the train between London and Cornwall. I hope that they put the internet requirement on the back of the box to avoid some disappointment. Its a little bit of a turn off, but i'm still buying it. I'm not gonna moan unless I lose my progress to this silly attempt to reduce piracy.

Avatar image for DomaineStickem

i really thought we had a winner here... Oh well, time to go back to Tropico 4

Avatar image for JeffreyCor

Making SimCity as a MMO in disguise is a travesty. I was all set to buy this game the moment it was released, until this forced online multiplayer "experience" destroyed that. Every aspect of this game can be simulated locally, but they are being lazy and making other players replace an AI. If they want to give multiplayer as an option that's fine but it should be optional! I'd far rather they delay this and make it right instead of releasing this as intended which will destroy SimCity.

Avatar image for Joutja

<< LINK REMOVED >> I agree. I like some of the online features however I don't like the idea that they are forcing you to play online, it should be an option rather than a requirement.

Avatar image for ObiWan86

Fear not simcity gamers! we'll can call the pirates when we need them ;) just saying :p

Avatar image for SoloMayor

I refuse to build cities, which are VALUABLE GAME CONTENT, for Maxis or EA. I refuse to create anything on servers so that some game companies get to decide when to ERASE MY CITIES and MODS because "sorry your cities are NOW OBSOLETE".

They better have a backup plan like offline version, for their delusion is going to end badly.

Avatar image for Iffy350

<< LINK REMOVED >> I know this is really, really late but I like your username.

Avatar image for ak99372

If I decide to buy this game I'll most likely download crack to block this useless feature...

Avatar image for ammas2311

Very disappointing! not buying.

Avatar image for azazelis


I get punished by being forced to be online and dependant on their servers (which haven't been spoken of highly) while pirates will find some work-around like they do for everything.

Ubisoft, Blizzard/Activision, and EA: as a former fan of your games, stop punishing us with these draconian anti-piracy actions.

If, and this is a big IF, the goal of this is to make everything online dependent based on user feedback from all the cities, they should at least allow some offline version for people (like myself) who want to make a city however I wanted without any repercussions from other players.

After all, wouldn't that be more in line with the vision of Will Wright?

Avatar image for esoteric314

very dissapointing. I won't be buying this game anymore. I'm glad I didnt pre-order it before hearing about this...

Avatar image for BlazePh

depending on how EA implements the online requirement, you might not even need to pirate it in order to play offline. you could just setup your computer as a fake server that responds to the game's internet requests.

Avatar image for chimpmanz1264

It's time EA was courted for this! They are destroying perfectly good games. I won't use Railworks cos you need a flamin steam account and now just as Simcity looks to pick up here is EA overlooking what real gamers are. Internet should be optional. Not forced! Look what happens to Internet only games. To date I only see WoW surviving with other sci fi fantasy games.

Avatar image for poundernator

i was so excited, the next game that would be refined both graphically and in its gameplay. but i am not going to purchase a game that requires that i have internetconstantly available, which is a ludicrous sentiment.

Avatar image for BrassBullet

BF3 looked like a great game but I didn't buy it because of Origin. Sim City looks like it could be a great game. I spend a few hundred dollars a year on games...none of it has been going to EA lately.

Avatar image for zenstrata

definitely won't be buying this one. They can take their always-online bs and cram it up their ***. Because they won't be getting a penny of my money for that sort of thing.

Avatar image for Gelugon_baat

@megakick [quote="You"]Its to fight Piracy, D3 uses drm....[/quote]

And that one is going to get cracked too, for anyone who bothers to play the game, even if the pirated version is going to be a crappy imitation.

Avatar image for Gelugon_baat

@JohnF111 [quote="You"]And people wonder why consoles are delicious to develop for these days.[/quote]

Just you wait: console games will have such DRM schemes too, sooner or later. ;)

Avatar image for Gelugon_baat

@Xenuri [quote="You"]I've had a constant internet connection since 2003, and as long as this helps stamp out pirates then GOOD for EA! woohoo[/quote]

If you mean that you don't have to play with pirates who may resort to cheating, then sure, "woohoo".

Have a good time playing with other die-hard SimCity fans then. You are Electronic Arts' most dependable sources of revenue and information.

Avatar image for Gelugon_baat

@Vambran [quote="You"]Don't Blame EA people. Blame the pirates or pc gamers. It's their fault we have DRM in the first place.[/quote]

That's an old counter-argument to the arguments against DRM.

The fact is still this: DRM never worked. Each new scheme still gets cracked (even though the pirated versions of such games will tend to have incomplete features and sh*tty stability).

It's still around only because DRM lets the likes of Electronic Arts collect information on customers.

Avatar image for Gelugon_baat

[quote="unreal_master"]Its the year 2012, if you dont have internet by now then I have no idea what you are doing.[/quote][quote="lewishim666"]What's the big deal everyone that is on here complaining has the internet.[/quote][quote="xxYetterxx"]Why is this such an issue for most you? When is your computer not hooked up to the internet? [/quote]

So I have to put up with restrictive schemes just because I have an Internet connection? :roll:

I can choose not to bother with this game at all - plenty of other games out there that don't try to collect information from players all the time.

Only die-hard fans of SimCity would put up with this - very reliable customers that Electronic Arts can always depend on for revenue and data on playing habits.

Avatar image for Gelugon_baat

@ChillingSky That's an old counter-argument, dude - and one that doesn't work because as long as a game requires a local install, it's going to get pirated. DRM schemes like these don't protect revenue - they never did - they are just meant to monitor legitimate players and get from them that other commodity that is precious to corporations like Electronic Arts: .

Avatar image for eelnarruc

ea,you can shove money from me.

Avatar image for FarmFreshDX

@Xenuri That's an interesting idea, but presents the problem of if their servers go down or anything, there goes the game you just paid for. When I pay for a game, I expect it to stand on its own and let me play it, indefinitely, as long as I can keep the disc/files in good condition.

Avatar image for shnelle

I was wanting to play this game so much til I read this. No thanks.

Avatar image for NeilCardiff

Another lost sale here.

Avatar image for Erebus

Wow, we know how EA likes to shut servers down for games, too. -1 sale from me.

Avatar image for pubboy

Always online you say EA? How will this work when you guys can't even get your servers working correctly, I still have trouble holding my connection to the fifa 12 servers....

Avatar image for ThePlumpPenguin

Yay! More games from a developer/publisher that codes so bad that you have to have a constant internet connection to play. Is there even a singleplayer in this game? If so, why the internet connection? Surely they could have done it without needing one. I mean, my DVD drive is faster then their servers and it can never be taken offline when they want it, so stf them.

Avatar image for ThePlumpPenguin

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

Avatar image for zzodr

All aboard the SimCity FAILBOAT

Avatar image for BlackMinistrel

I'm surprised to see that EA is still under the delusion that this is the best option to counter piracy. What a short-sighted move. Proper F2P models (Tribes: Ascend) -or fairer pricing-, better customer service and communication, are only a handful of the many ways game developers should be countering piracy effectively and without hurting their own reputation.

Avatar image for clqtte

No sale for that game,EA. Is that you want?

Avatar image for clqtte

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

Avatar image for Suikogaiden

EA ruins another classic. When will it end? Like anybody is going to be playing it for multiplayer anyway.

Avatar image for Mark_HD

And as always pirates will be playing the game perfectly fine offline, while paying customers will be screwed.

Avatar image for AkhilAnilkumar

An always online policy can be a bad thing even for users not pirating....

Avatar image for eternal_blade3

"According to EA, an always-on connection is necessary due to people who pirate games.. and because they like DRM." Fix'd.

Avatar image for Alpr1010

@flammable_zeus that's what used or pirated games are for. Developer gets nothing and you still play it. (More) People pirate games because of this stupid DRM crap. I have never pirated a game before but it looks like I will have to look into it if every publisher puts this crap on the game. Right now I'm replaying all of the Command & Conquer games. If they all required me to be online and the servers were shut down since most of them are 10+ years old, they'd be unplayable. No thanks, you can kiss my ass.

Avatar image for kid23455

@eridenou I said morally, though that is pretty stupid. But the cops aren't going to bust in your door because you "fixed" a game that you bought, and even if on some 1 in a billion chance they do, you'd win in court if you fought it.

Avatar image for flammable_zeus

For all of you saying you'll pirate the game, you're not helping the situation. All you're saying is that they're making a product that you still want to play but are too cheap to. Simply vote with your wallets. Don't buy OR pirate the game.

Avatar image for ads_legend

So I'm going to have to be connected to your crappy service to play the game that I OWN. No thanks EA.

Avatar image for mike300zxt

Yet another reason to boycott yet another EA game. I've been waiting for this game forever too :(

Avatar image for Carpe_Noctum

I always enjoy reading what stupid new thing EA is up too. Going to skip this game. The last time EA got any of my money was 1999, but I am going to buy the DLC for Mass Effect 2 and 3, I do the best I can to not support EA, they have lost it.