Simcity 2013: How Water Simulation Affects the Economy

Today, Simcity released a new video describing how the water simulator affects the economy. Like the previous videos, each step has a cause and effect, and you’ll see these things in real time.

In the water table map you can see which areas on the map have water. The bluer areas naturally have more water.

This makes the terrain green and lush, but the drier areas are brown and barren.

Place the water pump in an area with more water. As it pumps it subtracts water from the water table map.  Once the water is pumped, it is sent down the pipes as an agent to provide water to buildings. Periodically, the buildings will request more water, which will be replenished once the water agent reaches the buildings again.

But as the water agent reaches industrial zones, it will come in contact with ground pollution. In previous games, this ground pollution would reduce the amount of water dispersed. However in this game, ground pollution will now affect the water supply.


As the ground pollution spreads to the water tower, it will pump this dirty water to residential zones. When water is polluted it carries germs, and as Sims drink this water, they become sick.  Sick sims will leave work and head home, thus less income is generated. You can cure them by placing hospitals nearby.

As you can see, Simcity’s Glassbox Engine is a live simulator that is intricately integrated with different functions and services. One feature can detrimentally affect the other.

Simcity: The Economic Interaction Between Zones

Today Maxis released another video of their Glassbox Engine which is the fundamental layer powering the Simcity simulation. Today’s video focuses on the economic loop of the game’s engine. The simulation sends out “agents”, these agents can do various tasks, like for example, they can send out “help wanted agents” that request workers to either drive to work or walk to work.  Agents can carry resources and travel to different zones. Some of these agents aren’t shown on the screen while you are playing but they will travel along the roads and paths  you created.


In the video, the factories in the industrial zone opens at 6AM. However, these factories currently have no workers.  They will send out invisible “help wanted” agents that travel down the road and search for residential zones. They will figuratively “knock on their doors” to inform that zone that there is a job opening. Residential zones will then send out cars that will search for the first available job.

As enough people show up to work, the factory turns on and starts manufacturing products. Air pollution is triggered as a result of the manufacturing. In addition, freight trucks will spawn and send goods from the industrial zones to the commercial zones.

This is just one example of how Residential, Industrial, and Commercial zones interact to one another.  The point being that each thing you see in Simcity is something actually happening.

As this screenshot is illustrating, as factories are manufacturing goods, they will write to the air pollution map. This in turn triggers the smoke animation and sound effects at the same time.

[via simcity]

Simcity 2013 Minimum PC and MAC Requirements

Simcity and Simcity Digital Deluxe will be releasing for PCs in 2013. The game requires a computers with these minimum requirements.

Minimum Requirements

  • CPU: AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual-Core 4000+ or better / Intel Core 2 Duo Processor 2.0GHz or better
  • OS: Vista /XP/Windows 7
  • RAM: 4GB
  • Graphics: ATI Radeon 2×00 or better ;  nVidia 7800 or better ; Intel HD 4000 series or better
  • DVD Rom: 8x or better


  • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo Processor 2.0GHz or better
  • Operating System: Snow Leopard 10.6.4
  • RAM: 4GB RAM
  • Hard Drive: 10GB HD Space
  • Graphics Card: NVIDIA 9400M/ Intel HD3000
  • Broadband Internet:Minimum 256 kbps download, 64 kbps upload

To discover what graphics card your computer has, please follow these tips.

  • Click the START or Windows icon at the lower left of the taskbar.
  • Type “dxdiag” without quotes and press Enter
  • Press Yes if asked.
  • Click the Display tab at the top.
  • Look for Name, which will be your graphics card.

If you need help in identifying your computer can run this game, comment below by typing your graphics card from the Display tab, and the System Tab, type your “Operating System“, “Processor”  “Graphics Card” and “Memory.”

The two most important factors are your Graphics Card and Processor.

Simcity 2013 heading to E3; Simcity an Online Game

Today Ocean Quigley, confirmed Simcity will be heading to this year’s E3 Entertainment Expo.

Quigley states that Simcity is an online game. All cities are interconnected in some way and will have an impact on the larger world. Yes, even the city you created will affect other cities around you and vice versa. Maxis servers will be calculating all the simulations between the scope of the global market, the shifts and changes that affect the region, and the interactions between each city. “We’re not just simulating the internal mechanics of cities, we’re simulating how cities relate to each other.”  Each city will be different and take on specific roles, for example a casino city’s crime can affect nearby cities, or a city that specializes in being green.

You are allowed to play alone or with friends in a region to see how each other’s cities interact with each other. Quigley described this feeling as “magical” when you see Sims from your friend’s city travel to your city.

Quigley plans to show more of Simcity later this year at the E3 Expo.



Generally reactions to this announcement were mixed. It appears players are not quite convinced this isn’t the direction the next Simcity game should take. Some gamers are hoping for a single player offline experience, being that the main series thus far was playble offline. Others are concerned about EA’s Origin DRM techniques.

[via simcity]

SimCitizens Launch

Hello I’m Mike Richardson, and I’ll be your commander in chief at my new website SimCitizens. SimCitizens is a site that will cover the latest Simcity games from Simcity 2013 and onwards.

It will also cover other city building and simulation games including Cities XL, Anno, and The Sims once new games are announced. For now this site will focus on Simcity 2013.