🐳 Featured Group: Gameplay feature: Auto-mapping

Maxis Software Inc.

Moby ID: 1

Overview edit · view history

Maxis Software Inc. was a game development studio founded by Will Wright and Jeff Braun in 1987 in California (USA). The company was best known for its best-selling series of Sim games. Coined with SimCity in 1989, these games all use the Sim prefix and are mostly managerial strategy games, spanning all kinds of areas. The most successful segment is The Sims franchise. The company also had two other divisions, Maxis UK and Maxis South.

Prior to starting The Sims, the company was acquired by Electronic Arts in June 1997. The integration went slowly. The original studio location based in Walnut Creek officially closed in February 2004 and most of the jobs were moved to EA Redwood City. Although the studio was officially closed, the name Maxis still remained associated with The Sims games and most games are thus still credited as such. During the years, EA steadily removed Maxis from in-game text and credits and the development was credited to The Sims Studio based on the Electronic Arts’ Redwood City campus. Called Maxis and later EA Maxis, the name became one of EA's four primary labels, replacing the EA Play brand in 2012. Maxis was reintegrated with The Sims Studio in 2012 and Maxis returned as a branding development name in 2013, also with staff from EA Salt Lake, and tracktwenty (formerly EA Helsinki) for mobile development.

The original founder Will Wright is considered one of the industry's visionaries. When The Sims production was moved into EA, he continued to operate a studio in Emeryville (known as Electronic Arts Emeryville and later Maxis Emeryville), California where he developed the Spore franchise. This studio was largely considered the successor to the original Maxis studio. The Maxis Emeryville studio was closed around March 2015.

In 2023, Maxis was composed of three offices:

  • Redwood City, California
  • Austin, Texas
  • Kitchener, Ontario

Credited on 83 Games from 1988 to 2018

Displaying most recent · View all

The Sims Mobile (2018 on iPhone, iPad, Android)
SimCity (2013 on Windows, Macintosh)
SimCity Social (2012 on Browser)
Darkspore (2011 on Windows)
Spore Island (2009 on Browser)
Spore: Hero Arena (2009 on Nintendo DS)
SimCity (2008 on iPhone)
Spore Creatures (2008 on Nintendo DS)
Spore (2008 on Windows, Macintosh)
Spore Creature Creator (2008 on Windows, Macintosh)
Space (2008 on Windows)
The Sims: Pet Stories (2007 on Windows, Macintosh)
The Sims 2 (2005 on PlayStation 2, Xbox, GameCube)
The Sims 2 (2005 on Game Boy Advance)
The Sims 2 (2005 on J2ME)
The Urbz: Sims in the City (2004 on PlayStation 2, Xbox, GameCube)
The Sims 2 (2004 on Windows, Macintosh)
The Sims: Bustin' Out (2003 on PlayStation 2, Xbox, GameCube)
The Sims: Bustin' Out (2003 on Game Boy Advance, N-Gage)
The Sims (2003 on PlayStation 2, Xbox, GameCube)

[ view all ]

History +

March 4, 2015

EA closes Maxis Emeryville.

June 1997

Maxis was acquired by Electronic Arts in a US $125 million dollar stock transaction. The company is considered a fully-owned subsidiary of EA.

EA appointed 35-year-old French engineer Luc Barthelet as General Manager of Maxis.


The company acquires Cinematronics, LLC and renames it Maxis South.


The company moved from its Orinda, California, offices into the sixth floor of a corporate office-tower in Walnut Creek, California. In June, Maxis "went public" on the stock exchange.


Maxis struck a co-publishing agreement with Brøderbund.

[ view all ]

Trivia +

Company addresses in 1989 (from in-game and manual of SimCity: Terrain Editor):


Two Theatre Square

Orinda, CA 94563-3346



1042 Country Club Drive, Suite C

Moraga, CA 94556


Tel: (415) 376-6434

FAX: (415) 376-1823

Related Web Sites +


Add your expertise to help preserve video game history! You can submit a correction or add the following: