Not happy about SimCity’s always-on internet requirement? You will be.
“From the ground up it’s been a multiplayer game,” Maxis producer Jason Haber told Eurogamer. “I’m not surprised we’re getting some reaction like this. But I think once people see it in action – and at E3 we’re really looking forward to showing people multiplayer and how it works – hopefully that will show them why it’s such a great feature and it’s totally worth having.”
“The benefit you’re going to get out of being able to play online is going to help convince you of why it’s worth it,” said Haber.
The game’s multiplayer feature is a first for the series, and Maxis hasn’t yet explained what it’s all about. Previews of the game suggest that there is some kind of cooperation between cities at a regional level, though.
“The thing that’s important for people to know is it really was driven by us as the dev team,” said Haber. “We feel it’s a core feature to the game. It really makes the game richer. People have their conspiracy theories over why we’re doing it. But really, it’s honest that the dev team feels like it really does add a lot to the game, and it’s totally worth doing for that.”
Haber also denied that the decision to use an always-on connection has anything to do with DRM or piracy.
“That’s really the message we need to get out there and people need to understand. There are a lot of assumptions that people make and that’s just how the internet is,” he added.
“It’s a design choice on how to make the game feel more like a real city, right? And real cities don’t exist in bubbles that nobody else has any influence in. City actions affect other cities, and other cities affect them.”
EA has previously stated that the game requires an active internet connection before it will load up, but will support offline play should the connection drop.
SimCity 5 is due out sometime next year.