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Simulation

Description

Simulation games are created with the goal of putting the player in control of a certain activity while attempting to make it as realistic as possible.

In the strictest sense of the word, all electronic games are simulations, since they cannot exist without simulating aspects of real life. However, simulation genre only includes games that focus (entirely or mostly) on imitating real-life activities. That does not mean that simulation games must be completely realistic; for example, space combat simulation games simulate an activity that is (yet) unknown to human beings. The distinguishing feature of simulation games is their emphasis on realism and detail comparable to those encountered in real life.

Most simulation games are not story-driven, since they concentrate on describing general activities, not concrete situations. Among notable exceptions are Wing Commander games, which combine space combat simulation with a continuous narrative.

Simulation themes vary greatly; theoretically, they are limited only by the amount of activities known to human beings. Simulation themes include, for example, traffic networks, medical care, romance, music, and many others.

Simulation games can be roughly divided into five main groups:
  • Managerial simulations put the player in a position of a manager or a similar role.
  • Construction simulations primarily involve building, for example cities.
  • Life simulations may deal with human life or life in general.
  • Professional / Social simulations are dedicated to specific social activities and professions.
  • Vehicle simulations allow the player direct control of a vehicle with a certain sense of realism, for example plane, space ship, tank, etc.
Simulation can also be used as a modifier for other genres, for example Strategy (realistic re-creation of historical battles), Racing / Driving (particularly realistic vehicle-handling, tuning, repair, etc.), or Sports (team management, training, trading, etc.).
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TurboGrafx-16 (1989)

Naxat's first foray into golf games features a full 18-hole course and lots of top professional opponents. You choose your...

Nazo no Magazine Disk - Nazoler Land Special!! Quiz Ō o Sagase NES Front Cover

NES (1987)

A Famicom disk quiz game. Players travel around Japan and take on eight different quiz masters. If the player defeats...

NBA 2K10 Windows Front Cover

Windows (2009), Xbox 360 (2009), PlayStation 3 (2009) and Wii (2009)

The next release in the NBA 2K series, NBA 2K10 expands previous game modes, brings roster updates, and adds a...

NBA 2K10: Draft Combine Xbox 360 Front Cover

Xbox 360 (2009) and PlayStation 3 (2009)

Released almost two months before NBA 2K10, NBA 2K10: Draft Combine acts as both a tie-in and a paid demo...

NBA Jam 99 Nintendo 64 Front Cover

Nintendo 64 (1998) and Game Boy Color (1999)

NBA Jam returns, this time removed of its flashy jams and flaming basketballs, replaced with a full simulation of basketball...

NBA Live 2003 Windows Front Cover

Windows (2002), PlayStation (2002), PlayStation 2 (2002), Xbox (2002) and GameCube (2002)

The 2003 version of the NBA simulator has improved graphics in relation to the previous installments and features like detailed...

Game Boy (1995)

This handheld version of its console cousins differs in graphics and gameplay. While it does feature the full NBA license...

NBA Shootout 2002 PlayStation Front Cover

PlayStation (2001)

NBA Shootout 2002 is another iteration of the Shootout series with the obligatory roster change for the 2000-2001 season including...

NCAA Championship Basketball DOS Front Cover

DOS (1996)

NCAA-based basketball game. Includes 64 licensed teams (with fake players according to NCAA regulations) and several game modes like exhibition,...

NCAA Final Four 2001 PlayStation 2 Front Cover

PlayStation (2000) and PlayStation 2 (2000)

The continuation of 989 Sports long running NCAA basketball franchise and the first for the PS2, once again returns with...

NCAA Final Four 2002 PlayStation 2 Front Cover

PlayStation 2 (2001)

The follow-up to Final Four 2001 features the obligatory roster updates with over 300 real NCAA teams and 31 conferences...

NCAA Football 11 Xbox 360 Front Cover

Xbox 360 (2010) and PlayStation 3 (2010)

EA's 2010-2011 release in their NCAA Football series focuses on recreating the unique nuances of each of the 120 schools...

NCAA March Madness 2002 PlayStation 2 Front Cover

PlayStation 2 (2002)

Another entry in the March Madness series with the standard updated rosters on over 130 official NCAA teams along with...

Need for Speed: High Stakes Windows Front Cover

Windows (1999) and PlayStation (1999)

Just like its predecessors Need for Speed: High Stakes is an action racing game with a wide selection of exotic...

Need for Speed III: Hot Pursuit Windows Front Cover

Windows (1998) and PlayStation (1998)

In the third major installment of Electronic Arts' Arcade racing series, there are several modes of play available. You have...

Need for Speed II: SE Windows Front Cover

Windows (1997)

This is a special edition release of Need for Speed II which provides improved visuals in comparison to the original...

Need for Speed: SHIFT Windows Front Cover

Windows (2009), Xbox 360 (2009) and PlayStation 3 (2009)

The player's goal in Need for Speed: SHIFT is to take part in the Need for Speed World Tour and...

Xbox 360 (2009) and PlayStation 3 (2009)

This Special Edition includes: Need for Speed: SHIFT Unlockable BMW M3 GT2. The Super Race Series game mode Need for...

Need for Speed: V-Rally 2 Windows Front Cover

Windows (2000), PlayStation (1999) and Dreamcast (2000)

As an offshoot of the popular racing series "Need for Speed," this game follows the first rally game in the...

Windows (1995), Windows 3.x (1991), Amiga (1993), Palm OS (2001), Macintosh (1989) and Android (2011)

A kind of proto-Catz, Neko places an animated cat in a window on your desktop. While this is more of...

Game Gear (1996)

Pet Club: Neko Daisuki is game in Tamagotchi style. The player takes care of a small newborn kitten. He can...

PC-98 (1993)

Neko Mamma EX is a collection of four small games, unrelated by genre, story, or theme - with the exception...

Neo Geo Pocket (1998) and Neo Geo Pocket Color (1999)

Neo Cherry Master (or Real Casino Series: Neo Cherry Master) is a fruit machine/"one-armed bandit" simulator. Simple - spin the...

J2ME (2006)

Neopets Mobile is not a standalone game, but an extension of the online community neopets.com, where you can create or...

Windows (2006)

netKAR Pro is a racing game with a strong focus on realism. The player uses one of the five cars...

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