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Maxis takes their Sim-building line vertical with SimTower, an original concept from Japan (where vertical living is much more commonplace than in many parts of the world).

Your goal is to build a skyscraper that is both tall, aethestically pleasing, popular, and, most importantly, economically profitable. To be successful, your building cannot just be levels upon levels of officespace, or just an apartment sky-rise, but a multi-functional haven for humanity featuring everything from penthouses to theatres, restaurants to shopping malls. The centerpiece of your tower design is your elevators and proper managment is the key.

You can watch your Sims enter and leave your grand tower, getting impatient waiting for elevators, or having a hectic work day at the office. You can even train in on one or two, to server as a metering stick for their compatriots, or just to peek into the average workday of the little people living in your building. Or watch the security and resuce crews race as distasters like bomb threats and fires rampage through your well-crafted skyscraper.

The PlayStation version adds an additional bonus map.


SimTower: The Vertical Empire Windows 3.x To publicise the game MAXIS released an interactive demo version. This screenshot was taken from a copy found on SimCity 2000: Special Edition
SimTower: The Vertical Empire Windows 3.x a new service elevator on the left for housekeeping access
SimTower: The Vertical Empire Windows 3.x We received a two star tower rating, adding more building options
SimTower: The Vertical Empire Windows 3.x Title Screen

Promo Images

SimTower: The Vertical Empire Magazine Advertisement
SimTower: The Vertical Empire Magazine Advertisement
SimTower: The Vertical Empire Magazine Advertisement

Alternate Titles

  • "The Tower: Bonus Edition" -- PlayStation title
  • "The Tower" -- Japanese title
  • "SimTower: L'Empire Vertical" -- French title
  • "SimTower: Das vertikale Imperium" -- German title
  • "ザ・タワー" -- Japanese spelling

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

So simple...yet somehow addicting classicpoki (9) 3.25 Stars3.25 Stars3.25 Stars3.25 Stars3.25 Stars
Fun Big C (58) unrated

Critic Reviews

PC Format (UK) Dec, 1995 80 out of 100 80
Power Unlimited Jul, 1995 8 out of 10 80
PC Games (Germany) Jun, 1995 79 out of 100 79
Play Time Jun, 1995 77 out of 100 77
PC Gamer Aug, 1995 74 out of 100 74
Génération 4 Jul, 1995 74 out of 100 74
PC Joker Jul, 1995 72 out of 100 72
Entertainment Weekly Jan 13, 1995 B- 67
Joystick (French) Jul, 1995 65 out of 100 65
Gameplay (Benelux) Aug, 1995 62 out of 100 62


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The game evolved out of a program to test elevator management software.


The bell sound at the end of a year is the same ring as a bell in the Charlie Chaplin movie City Lights. There it indicates the beginning of a new day.


SimTower was one of a scant few commercial games to use WinG, a game library developed by Microsoft during the brief period between the Windows game SDK and DirectX.

Related Web Sites

Olivier Masse (449) added SimTower: The Vertical Empire (Windows 3.x) on Oct 16, 1999
Other platforms contributed by Lance Boyle (1516), gingerbeardman (657), Kabushi (257515) and Iggi (22606)