EA offers free game to angry SimCity players

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The launch of always-online SimCity did not go smoothly to say the least, but to say sorry to their fans, EA and Maxis are offering a free game from the EA catalogue to those who were hamstrung by the launch day problems.

The details are not clear on which free game will be on offer, but SimCity players can expect an e-mail on 18 March with the details on how to claim it.

In a blog post over the weekend, Maxis general manager Lucy Bradshaw apologised to SimCity players:

Here’s a quick update on the problems we were experiencing with SimCity – and a little something extra for people who bought the game.

The server issues which began at launch have improved significantly as we added more capacity.  But some people are still experiencing response and stability problems that we’re working fast to address.

So what went wrong?  The short answer is: a lot more people logged on than we expected.  More people played and played in ways we never saw in the beta.

OK, we agree, that was dumb, but we are committed to fixing it.  In the last 48 hours we increased server capacity by 120 percent.  It’s working – the number of people who have gotten in and built cities has improved dramatically.  The number of disrupted experiences has dropped by roughly 80 percent.

So we’re close to fixed, but not quite there.  I’m hoping to post another update this weekend to let everyone know that the launch issues are behind us.

Something Special for Your Trouble

The good news is that SimCity is a solid hit in all major markets.  The consensus among critics and players is that this is fundamentally a great game.  But this SimCity is made to be played online, and if you can’t get a stable connection, you’re NOT having a good experience. So we’re not going to rest until we’ve fixed the remaining server issues.

And to get us back in your good graces, we’re going to offer you a free PC download game from the EA portfolio.  On March 18, SimCity players who have activated their game will receive an email telling them how to redeem their free game.

I know that’s a little contrived – kind of like buying a present for a friend after you did something crummy.  But we feel bad about what happened.  We’re hoping you won’t stay mad and that we’ll be friends again when SimCity is running at 100 percent.

SimCity is a GREAT game and the people who made it are incredibly proud.  Hang in there – we’ll be providing more updates throughout the weekend.

Maxis general manager Lucy Bradshaw

Maxis general manager Lucy Bradshaw

As of Sunday evening, personally my playing experience has been largely unaffected, although there have been a few disconnections from the SimCity server, which at least didn’t boot me from the game.

Let us know your experience with SimCity thus far in the comments below and on the MyGaming forum.

More SimCity news

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SimCity intro trailer reveals space-aged surprise

SimCity “multi-city” features detailed

SimCity 5′s always-on internet requirement is “totally worth it”, promises Maxis

Forum discussion

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  • ArchieChoke

    Well well well..I dont think its your servers to be honest, I think you released the Beta with all the specilizations activated and did’nt test it properly. Three times this weekend I lost all my work, whenever I go hardcore with my cities, like oil, I focused 6 oil plants with maximum Drills and delivery trucks, then another 6 trade depot’s with max storage and delivery trucks. Soon as I am making serious cash and got over 80 000 population your application stops my progress and exclaim’s in a rude manner “We cannot process your city”, with only an option of rolling back when I only had 2 oil rigs and 2 trade depots. This game is broken and I totally blame DRM. BTW I did this on multiple regions and same result.Each of those regions are completely broken to the point that I cant even get into the region view of a city I made.

  • http://twitter.com/fdlouw Francois Louw

    Well, I have given up for now. I haven’t even had the opportunity to queue for a server, having to download who-knows how many large “updates” and “patches” first. No indication of how many MBs I have to download, and as soon as I have finished and thought “OK, finally, 100%”, I have to download a new one. Very bad for a game straight out of the box.

  • Wyzak

    Please post your experiences on this thread if you want to warn other users: http://mygaming.co.za/forum/showthread.php/28990-SimCity-2013

  • The Rich

    I knew these server problems would happen. A couple of friends and I all deliberately didn’t buy this on launch day for this exact reason. We’re all going to wait another month or so until all the servers are working and all the patches have been released before we’ll pony up for it.

  • Wyzak

    If I were you I would wait for the GOTY edition. You just know that EA are going to add subways and larger maps etc as paid-DLCs.

  • JJ Steyn

    Rumour-mongering is so much fun. Even more so when there is no supporting evidence for it.

  • Wyzak

    How many DLCs have there been for BF3? Or for the Sims? Both EA games. There is far more evidence to suggest they will do the same here, than there is to suggest that they won’t.

  • JJ Steyn

    But there is no evidence to suggest that the paid DLCs will be for things like larger maps. Maxis has already said that the maps sizes are due to server performance limitations and they might look at increasing size later, but there has never been any indication that we would have to pay for larger maps.

    People are welcome to dislike the game, but don’t go looking for ghosts where none exist.

  • Wyzak

    I’ve read that, but they also did not explicitly state that they won’t be selling the larger maps when/if they become available. That’s what makes this point an interesting item to debate. Why does the opinion that it will be free outweigh the opinion that it will be sold?

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