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SimCity 2000 (Windows)

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MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
4.1
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  Condemned (70)
Written on  :  Dec 14, 2009
Platform  :  Windows
Rating  :  4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars

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Summary

The best of the Sim City bunch

The Good

The game has just a really cool concept. Yeah, that concept was obviously present before, since this is a sequel, but it was the first version of SC that I was exposed to... so I might be a little biased.

You also get sweet little perks and incentives along the way, as you reach population goals. For instance, your citizens endow you with a mansion when your town hits 2,000 residents. These cool little bonuses keep you striving to make your city bigger and bigger.

The option to create your own map is great, choosing exactly where you want there to be hills, trees, and bodies of water. I always enjoyed doing fun, fantasy things like creating a small island that would eventually house my mayor's mansion and statue.

The game was really created with a good sense of humor, and that's one of its best features. The comical nature of your town's newspapers make for a good laugh now and then - the game's writers created a kind of "mad libs" style for articles, with random words being placed into serious sounding reports... so reading them as actual news can be quite hilarious! Newspapers also keep tabs on how your population feels about pollution, crime, etc.

The Bad

After awhile, you do hit the wall on your city and find yourself filling up your map just for the sake of it. The true fun is when you're founding your new city and struggling to make it profitable and efficient, so once you've accomplished that, it becomes simply about repeating the formula over and over again until every square of available real estate is populated.

The game is really easy. There seems to be a make-or-break point in each city where you're barely making any money, hardly affording one square of electrical line... and then suddenly you're making money hand-over-fist and your biggest problem is maintaining your police stations (one of every corner, practically!) and choosing which expensive amenity to add to your city next... smooth sailing from here on. There's not much that makes one game of SC2000 different from the next.

There's quite a number of ways the developers could have expanded the game... It would've been really cool to be able to interact with neighboring cities (trade, tourism, sports rivalries) or to have more control over your citizens.

I usually stop playing once arcologies are invented, the game really ceases to be fun at that point for me. Tearing up the "normal" parts of your city to create these space age monstrosities takes away any sense of realism you may feel about your city.

The worst part of the game has to be the limited life span of every single power plant you build (except wind turbines). Whether your plant is solar, nuclear, or coal - it will explode 50 years after being built. If you have the funds in your bank, the game automatically deducts it from your total and re-builds the plant itself, but if not, you have to deal with angry blacked-out citizenry and figure out a way to scrape together thousands of simolians, quick! By the time you've filled your map up, you have so many power plants built that it becomes flat-out annoying to deal with. Not so much a challenge, just endlessly annoying!

Other nuisances that take up too much of your time is dealing with water shortages (building water pump after water pump, year after year) and having to put police stations on nearly every corner just to keep crime in check.

The Bottom Line

This game is a lot of fun, but like any sim game, can get old after awhile... as you figure out patterns and strategies that work every time, or hit the point where your city becomes profitable and the early challenges disappear.

If you're fan of sim games, you have to give this one a try...