DescriptionSimCity sets you as the mayor of a new municipality, with the responsibility of building and maintaining a place where citizens can move to and work and be happy. The first task is to place essentials such as housing, transport links, schools, factories and shops. There are 50 types of these, allowing for homes of all standards and different types of businesses. Make sure to consider which sites are effective for which tasks. Some power sources pollute, others don't but are more expensive. Taxes must be raised to ensure an income, and then portions allocated to public services such as policing and roads. Earthquakes, floods and fires are all emergency situations that must be dealt to contain any damage.
Successful mayoring will cause the small village to grow into a town, then a city and finally a metropolis. As the city's size grows so do it's needs. Commercial buildings may suddenly find that they need an airport to expand trade, or housing may find itself changing rapidly as vast amounts of people come and leave.
The game also includes 8 pre-defined time-limited scenarios, with specific challenges and targets. The environment varies in each game (especially if you have the Terrain Editor add on), and this should affect your choices.
- "模擬城市" -- Traditional Chinese spelling
- "模拟城市" -- Simplified Chinese spelling
- "SimCity: The City Simulator" -- Tag-lined title
- "SimCity Classic" -- 1993 re-release title
- "Sim City" -- Alternate spelling
- "Micropolis" -- Working title
- "シムシティ" -- Japanese spelling
Part of the Following Groups
- Games with extra content copy protection
- Games with randomly generated environments
- Maxis Sim series
- Setting: City - Boston
- Setting: City - Rio de Janeiro
- Setting: City - San Francisco
- Setting: City - Tokyo
- SimCity series
- Video games turned into board / card games
There are no reviews for the BBC Micro release of this game. You can use the links below to write your own review or read reviews for the other platforms of this game.
There are no critic reviews for this game.
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1001 Video GamesSimCity appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.
AirportA strange thing in SimCity: If you query (Q) the RADAR (or is it something else? The moving part, anyways) at the airport, it is reported as industrial, instead of airport
Browser versionTo celebrate the release of SimCity 4: Rush Hour, EA Games put a web-based version of this original SimCity game up on their website for play.
As of 2006, the URL is http://simcity.ea.com/play/simcity_classic.php
Cancelled NES portA NES port was originally announced on the September/October 1990 issue of Nintendo Power magazine. It was playable on the Winter International Consumer Electronics Show 1991, but was quietly cancelled. On December 25, 2018, a ROM of the prototype was uploaded by Video Game History Foundation. Among other things, it featured a completely different soundtrack than the SNES port, although it had the same composer.
Commodore 64 versionThe Commodore 64 version is missing various features. Some of the things missing are fire and police stations, the eval stat screen, stadiums, and meltdowns.
Copy ProtectionIn the original DOS release of SimCity, the copy protection was handled a bit different than most games.
The game gave you 3 square symbols, and then asked you to enter a City and Population. The copy protection itself was printed on dark red papers (therefore uncopyable).
Cover artThe change in box designs (see cover scans) was due to trademark infringement- the use of Godzilla on the cover wasn't appreciated by Toho Studios.
DevelopmentThe first version of the game was finished in 1985, but publishers at the time refused to release it because it was a non-standard game without a clear goal. So Will Wright and Jeff Braun had to found their own company, Maxis, to get it out. In hindsight, the publishers were terribly wrong and the game became a huge success.
DisastersSome of the game's "random disasters" aren't really random at all. For instance, if you demolish a church a tornado will strike your city...every time! According to Johnny L Wilson's SimCity Planning Commission Handbook, this connection was implemented in order to discourage "impious" players from bulldozing churches due to perceived (not actual) effects on these public buildings' effects on the tax base. The connection only exists in the IBM version and is inspired by the phrase "acts of God" used in the insurance industry to describe property damage-causing natural disasters..
- SimCity was inspired by the work Jay Forrester did at MIT. Using a specialized programming language called DYNAMO, he modeled various statistics about the world to determine how to create high quality of life. He also wrote a program to assist in urban planning.
- Another inspiration for SimCity was Will Wright's first game, Raid on Bungeling Bay. He was having much more fun building levels than playing them, so he decided to create a game out of it.
- According to the SimCity Planning Commission Handbook, a big influence on Will Wright in formulating the concept of this game (or "software toy") was an anthology of short stories by Stanislaw Lem entitled The Cyberiad -- especially one in which master inventor Trurl builds deposed tyrant Excelsius a "kingdom in a box" in which to harmlessly exercise his tyrannical urges. (Eventually, the people in the box manage to overthrow Excelsius.)
LanguagesThe Japanese PC-98 port can be switched to English in the configuration screen.
MonsterIn the PC releases of SimCity, the monster that can destroy your city in a large red lizard. In the SNES release, the monster is Bowser, from the Mario games!
One LaptopIn 2007 it was announced that SimCity will be one of the games included with the One Laptop Per Child Program's $100 laptops.
Source code releaseThe original game's source was released under a GPL license in January 2008. The game's name was changed to Micropolis because Electronic Arts holds the license, and plane crashes have been removed because of the 9/11 incident.
Super Smash Bros.Dr. Wright from the SNES version appears as an assist trophy in the Wii game Super Smash Bros.: Brawl.
- ACE (Advanced Computer Entertainment)
- March 1991 (issue #42) - Included in the list Greatest Games of all Time in category Simulations (editorial staff choice)
- Computer Gaming World
- October 1991 (Issue #87) – Introduced into the Hall of Fame
- October 1989 (Issue #64) – Game of the Year
- November 1996 (15th anniversary issue) - #6 in the “150 Best Games of All Time” list
- March 2001 (Issue #200) - #2 in the "Top Ten Games of All Time" list (Readers' vote)
- March 2001 (Issue #200) - #5 in the "Top Ten Games of All Time" list (Editors' vote)
- Game Informer
- August 2001 (Issue #100) - #31 in the "Top 100 Games of All Time" poll
- 2001 – #33 Top Game of All Time
- GameStar (Germany)
- Issue 12/1999 - #5 in the "100 Most Important PC Games of the Nineties" ranking
- Power Play
- Issue 01/1990 - #2 Best Game Idea in 1989
- Retro Gamer
- September 2004 (Issue #8) – #98 Best Game Of All Time (Readers' Vote)
- ST Format
- Issue 01/1991 – #3 Best Simulator Game in 1990 (Atari ST)
- Issue 01/1993 – #28 in '50 finest Atari ST games of all time' list
Related Web Sites
- Micropolis aka SimCity (Download the game's source code.)
- Play SimCity Classic online! (Free (with registration), legal play of the original game as a Java applet through your web browser!)
- Product page for Palm version (Atelier's homepage courtesy of archive.org.)
- Product page for Palm version (Japan) (Product page for Palm version (Japan))