The Beat

LUCY BRADSHAW

LUCY BRADSHAW

General Manager, Maxis Label

POSTED BY Lucy Bradshaw ON Mar 10, 2013

SimCity Sunday Update from Lucy Bradshaw

I’m happy to report that the core problem with getting in and having a great SimCity experience is almost behind us.  Our players have been able to connect to their cities in the game for nearly 8 million hours of gameplay time and we’ve reduced game crashes by 92% from day one.

A combination of optimizing our server architecture and response times, deploying these enhancements on both a series of new and the original servers and issuing a few critical client updates has achieved getting virtually everyone into the game and, once in, having a great time building cities and sharing regions.

I had hoped to issue an “All-Clear” tonight, but there are still some elements coming together.  Tonight and tomorrow we’ll be monitoring each server and gameplay metrics to ensure that the service remains strong and game is playing great.  We need a few more days of data before we can assure you that the problem is completely solved and the game is running at 100 percent.

The good news is that tens of thousands of new players are streaming into the game every day and the confidence our fans have shown is truly humbling.  I can’t begin to explain the way a development team feels when something you’re proud of is threatened at launch.  Our biggest fear was that people who love this franchise would be scared off by bad reviews about the connectivity issues.

But you put your faith in us.  You bought the game with the understanding that we’d quickly fix the server issues.  For that support – that incredible commitment from our fans -- we are deeply grateful.  As the general manager of Maxis, I want you to know that we cherish your faith in us, and the love you’ve shown for this franchise.

Thank you very much.

Comments (69)

  1. +6 -17
    Lucy, thank you for your help and support. I love this game so far. I know how hard it is for developers to be under such criticism especially on launch day. The mature gamers among us don't fret about a couple days of patience. Great job!
    Mar 10, 2013
    3 Replies
    1. +5 0
      Nice try, EA/Maxis employee. When people buy a product, they expect it to work from day 1. When you buy a car, wouldn't you complain if you can't drive it the day you get it? It's not because it's an entertainment product that people should stop complaining. Btw, I didn't buy this game but just pointing out the obvious.
      Mar 11, 2013
      0 Replies
    2. +1 0
      A couple days of patience? I have been a fan of EA for a long time, but this is enough. You have already messed up a few games that had the MOST potential during their times. First, don't make people pay $59.99 or $79.99 for a game that you can't play unless connected to the internet. That's the dumbest mistake ever. Second, don't say the problem is the servers...admit that the problem is your retarded "Always online to play" feature. Come out with a revision, or expansion, that eliminates this feature.
      Mar 11, 2013
      0 Replies
    3. 0 0
      There has to be some balance, am already kind of bored of this game in single player mode, it feels a little sluggish, though that could just be because of my computer. I'm going to try the multiplier experience for a little while and see how that pans out. On a side note, if I am paying £45 for something, I shouldn't be expected to wait a few days, it wasn't a few days wait it was more than a few days in fact it was several days and the problem hasn't seem to have been resolved even till now.
      Mar 16, 2013
      0 Replies
  2. 0 -6
    I hope Simcity (2013) will do well moving forward despite the horrible launch day on a franchise that built up Maxis, the bad reviews, and the fans' frustrations. I wasn't particularly thrill about the game's "always online" requirement but I am going to give it a shot.
    Mar 10, 2013
    0 Replies
  3. +4 -1
    Although I won't purchase the game, because of DRM requirements. I think you have done a wonderful job communicating over the past few days. I have been following this since your release and have faith you will get this fully resolved. Hopefully one day you can release a DRM free version for the rest of us.
    Mar 10, 2013
    0 Replies
  4. +9 0
    What a load of crap! Lmao - translation of mrs bradshaw's latest line of bull - sorry I punched you in the face, thanks for still loving me - just say your sorry, and fix the problem by getting with your development team and starting work on an offline option...the reason some of us don't "love" you anymore is because we liked the way simcity used to be...we got to play god, in the privacy of our own home while not being tethered or controlled by your servers. I fell lucky that I didn't buy it!
    Mar 10, 2013
    0 Replies
  5. +6 0
    Your poor excuse for an upgrade makes the game crash now. So you fix server issues, but create client side issues?
    Mar 10, 2013
    0 Replies
  6. Comment Flagged +8 -1
    I would like to speak up on my end about the game too. Server issues aside and being someone that has played every SimCity made up to this point. The new game adds a lot of restrictions to it too. I've been playing the game for hours and yet I am not as pleased with it as I used to be. The region thing is nice, but the Cities you make in itself are way too small. If you play it and want to create a big city, right there is the first issue. You really can't anymore. It's too small.
    Mar 10, 2013
    0 Replies
  7. Comment Flagged +10 0
    -The DRM is horrible. I dont need a server to play anything but an MMO. Apparently devs didn't watch D3's launch. -When I am forced to swap between servers constantly d/t overcrowding, I DO NOT want to play the tutorial city every time. Once was enough. -Gambling is broken. -Sending resources to Great works is broken. -The icon next to the server that says I have a city there is incorrect. It only means I logged onto that server and realized I had to play the tutorial to proceed, and Alt+F4
    Mar 11, 2013
    2 Replies
    1. 0 0
      I don't know what everyone is troubling with. I bought the game on day one just like many of you. I struggled like most of you to play even once. The tutorial didn't work at first. Then Maxis got on it and made some hotfixes and I was able to finish the tutorial ONCE, create a city. Sure, that server got all full up so I had to switch to another server, but I didn't have to do the tutorial again...
      Mar 11, 2013
      0 Replies
    2. 0 0
      I am CURRENTLY replaying the tutorial due to server switch. Maybe you are just that lucky person that EA chooses to spare from the experience thrashing.
      Mar 11, 2013
      0 Replies
  8. +3 0
    I've had fun playing the game for the hours I've got to play it. Sad thing is that I wanted to tell others about it, but I can't get into the game when I want to. I don't even know if a region I created is still on the server, because I can't get back into it. I don't know, this game was just rushed. I like it, but it doesn't feel like a Maxis production. The short time I've played shows me that I will be in a region with a lot of other players who may never come back, leaving a ghost region...
    Mar 11, 2013
    1 Reply
    1. 0 0
      And as for city size, I agree with other players. They are way too small. If they are going to be that small they need to be side by side to other cities in the region. Or one day let us fill in the gaps. We buy city simulation games to do just that. Make the most realistic cities we can, not ones crammed into a small cube.
      Mar 11, 2013
      0 Replies
  9. +7 0
    I feel horrible talking my friends into buying this game with me... change[dot]org/petitions/electronic-arts-inc-remove-always-online-drm-from-simcity-and-future-games
    Mar 11, 2013
    0 Replies
  10. +6 0
    The best way to fix your server problems for the majority of players would have been to make the game playable offline. However many features are linked into the cloud, there's aways been more in it for the publisher than the player by adding the online requirement.
    Mar 11, 2013
    2 Replies
    1. 0 -1
      This is only true to a certain extent. Publishers use DRM to protect their games from being pirated. The more pirating that is done could raise the prices of games for the player.....think about it.
      Mar 11, 2013
      0 Replies
    2. +1 0
      you are so wrong. if this was true then all developers would be struggling with their stocks, but their not. their stocks keep going up. making a good game that people want to play that also doesnt **** off their consumers is the only thing they can do to keep people buying their stuff. no matter what there will be pirates. so punishing the people that are actually keeping the company afloat just to do another failed attempt at stopping piracy will do nothing but harm their trust int he consumer. because this game is going to be cracked either way, and then pirated. and the pirates will get a nice offline version of the game... just like we (the ones paying for the game) want. but go ahead and try to blame piracy as the cause for this. its not the pirates' fault its corporate greed to blame.
      Mar 11, 2013
      0 Replies
  11. +7 0
    Although I feel for the developer, this post seems somewhat comical considering EA will not allow returns on digital copies, seems like most fans are forced to ride out this storm. Although this game looks very entertaining and fun, I just can't support DRM as a nessecary evil.
    Mar 11, 2013
    0 Replies
  12. +2 0
    Any chance I can use that 20 dollar discount code off a 30 dollar item anytime soon??? I wanted to use it for Tomb Raider, but ya's screwed me out of that, now I want to use it for Battlefield 3 Premium, which I know it is supposed to work for (I can get it from the link in the instructions in the email), but when I put in the discount code, nothing happens. It doesn't give me an error or anything. And I only have till the 18th to use it. Am I getting shafted out of this too???
    Mar 11, 2013
    0 Replies
  13. +6 0
    I want SimCity SINGLE PLAYER OFF LINE. I do not buy any more game that is played online. For all, DO NOT BUY ANY GAME THAT YOU PLAY ONLINE.
    Mar 11, 2013
    0 Replies
  14. +3 0
    Offine patch with optional online mode, MOD support, both local and cloud saves, and.... there you go.The game gets a huge boost, sales go up, everyone's happy. All this work you've put on creating this great engine (Glassbox), just to restrain it for whatever reason? I see it as an injustice to the series. Please make the right choices, and I'm sure that everyone who cares, will support you even more. But seriously, thank you for trying as hard as you can to atleast make it playable.
    Mar 11, 2013
    0 Replies
  15. 0 0
    I hope this means you can fix the game's multiplayer features soon. I would really like to be able to buy power and share services, like the game is intended to do. Kind of hitting a brick wall in my more developed cities now as a result
    Mar 11, 2013
    0 Replies
  16. Comment Flagged 0 -10
    Good news, I will buy the game now, seems that the servers are stable..
    Mar 11, 2013
    2 Replies
    1. +2 0
      idiot
      Mar 11, 2013
      0 Replies
    2. 0 0
      Except they aren't. You might be able to log in and plop down stuff. Good luck trying to make a region work. Most anything region share doesn't work.
      Mar 12, 2013
      0 Replies
  17. Comment Flagged +6 0
    Is this some sort of joke? I tried to play 3 times this weekend and every time my city failed to load (NA East 2 server). It took 6+ hours for cities in my region to recognize that I installed a department on my city hall that allowed the creation of different buildings throughout the region. If this is "close to 100%", I fear for the future of the game.
    Mar 11, 2013
    0 Replies
  18. Comment Flagged +7 -1
    These issues should have been addressed prior to launch. Did you not learn from Battlefield 3 or Diablo3's lauches? Regardless, there are still numerous issues with this game, one glaring issue is regional interactivity. Also, why aren't amazon day 1 purchasers not receiving a free game unlike the Origin people? A bit unfair me thinks.
    Mar 11, 2013
    0 Replies
  19. Comment Flagged +7 -1
    My cities are constantly being rolled back and some can't even be accessed. I'm sorry, wasn't the point trying to make your online component not ruin the game?
    Mar 11, 2013
    0 Replies
  20. +4 -1
    I can't even get my game to play.. I had to reinstall it and still nothing...
    Mar 11, 2013
    1 Reply
    1. 0 0
      Me either not one second of play
      Mar 12, 2013
      0 Replies