SimCity will get an offline mode in next patch

Oft-requested feature will finally arrive to SimCity, 10 months after the game's launch.

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10 months after its controversial release, the PC and Mac reboot of SimCity will allow offline play.

Offline mode will arrive as part of the game's tenth update, due to be released soon.

"When we launch [SimCity's offline mode], all of your previously downloaded content will be available to you anytime, anywhere, without the need for an internet connection," wrote Maxis general manager Patrick Buechner on the SimCity blog.

Buechner said that the mode's development is in its "late phases" and that the studio is testing the update ahead of release to ensure that SimCity's offline mode is as "polished as possible."

"We’ll be releasing more information on how it all works," added Buechner, but from his brief explanation it sounds like Offline and Online cities will be separated.

"In Update 10, you can still play solo in Regions on your own, or in Multiplayer with people from around the world. What’s new is the Single Player Mode, which allows you to play the game Offline by yourself. And because your saved games in this mode are stored locally, you can save and load to your heart’s content."

"All of the benefits of being connected will remain including access to Multiplayer, the Global Market and Leaderboards. And all of your pre-existing saved cities and regions will still be accessible should you log-in to the Online game."

One of the other advantages of the offline mode will be that it "means big things for our wonderful community of Modders," Buechner said. "They can now make modifications to the game and its components without compromising the integrity of the Online game. Modding is a big part of our studio’s legacy and we’re excited to see what you guys create."

Maxis encouraged SimCity modders to experiment with the game over the weekend.

At launch, SimCity required a constant Internet connection to EA's servers in order to function, although many players were left unable to play for days after launch due to server problems. EA and Maxis both maintained this requirement was because of the game's focus on connected play rather than an attempt at forced DRM restrictions.

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