13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on December 6, 2003
I really love playing simulation games and Sim City 4 Deluxe Edition is the best I've come across so far. I used to have the orginal Sim City for the Commodore 64. Yes I'm showing my age, I have also had other versions of Sim City for the PC and I found the older ones more frustrating.
I been up sometimes to 3 am working with my cities.
I was in local government for 15 years and this game is also very realistic with traffic problems, budget problems, other officals who sometimes put their own interests above others and so on.
After reading some of the reviews I have a few tips for who ever is interested.
1.) Turn off antivirus software while installing and playing the game (this goes for about every game)
2.) Check for video card driver updates and direct x updates
Game Play Hints:
1.) Try and keep your schools in a central location in your residential areas, that way you can use less bus funding. Also do the same with your public services.
2.) Don't build any fire dept until the public safety dude is yelling at you.
3.) Try not to let the game auto place your streets when zoning. Build your own first and then zone around them and make sure the arrows are pointing to the street.
4.) When doing a lot of street building and zoning pause the game, it cuts down on the distractions
5.) You can sneak funding down a little on public ultities.
6.) You can sneak taxes up a little over time without too many problems.
Sim City 4 Deluxe is worth having.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on April 11, 2004
With SIMCITY 4 DELUXE EDITION, which conveniently contains both the regular SIMCITY 4 plus the RUSH HOUR EXPANSION PACK, EA Games is really beginning to live up to their tagline "Challenge Everything." Apparently, the game designers decided to challenge everything that seemed to be holding the game back in the past, and have taken a brave step forward in designing this new edition with those of us in mind who want to be able to create a SimWorld. In other words, you now have an entire continent on which to build cities; instead of having fake adjacent cities that you're forced to do business with, you now can make your own adjacent cities yourself! You can choose from any of a hundred or so "squares" on which you can build one city after another and have them all trade with each other and everything! You can connect them with superhighways, rail, roads, power, water; it's great!
Another major improvement is in the increased flexibility in building up each of your cities. Remember how, in previous SimCity versions, it's such a pain to figure out where to place your streets within your zones? Not anymore; each time you lay out a zone, whether it be Residential, Commercial or Industrial, the game will automatically lay down a grid of streets for you! That saves A LOT of time right there. Also, remember how you had to blow up your streets in order to replace them with bigger streets? Now, it's a lot easier, because first of all, the road system is much better organized. For example, when you start building a town, you start by using the simple, narrow streets (which are now specifically labeled as being "streets"). However, as people move in and your streets begin to get crowded with traffic, you can then upgrade to wider roads. Eventually, as traffic begins to overwhelm your roads, you may upgrade to wide avenues. All you need to do to "upgrade" is to simply drag a road along a street, or an avenue along a road and---boom!---it automatically changes to a road or avenue. No more having to demolish anything in the process!
The Rush Hour Expansion Pack just adds a new dimension to the game: now you can go out on selected "missions" by car, boat---even helicopter---and earn new buildings, more money, etc. for your city. Admittedly, I'm still trying to get the hang of these missions, as they aren't too easy, but it's still a cool feature for the game. Also, the buildings and airports are in much better detail now, and there is far greater variety of them. There are also many new landmarks to choose from; they are in much greater detail and there is no longer any limit how many you may place. (However, you now have to pay to place them.) There are many new rewards for being a good Mayor, too!
My hope is that with SIMCITY 5, they will make everything more 3-D and will finally provide us with the ability for a ground-level Pedestrian View; imagine being able to walk the streets and boulevards of your own cities, drive around, even take your own trains! I think the possibilities are endless. Till then, this will have to do. But, for what it's worth, it's still a pretty darn good game!
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED FOR SIM FANS
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on February 29, 2004
Computer games my friends don't get any better than this! THis "Deluxe EditioN" compiles the original Simcity 4 game along with the "Rush Hour" expansion pack into one package!
Simcity 4 suffered from many flaws that I felt really hindered the game's credibility in many areas. One was the freeways where they would just simply end in a dangling cliff where it would look like a daredevil stunt arena. Another one was the street system where you couldn't build anything more than two lane roads other than freeways. The game felt a bit unfinished in many areas.
However the graphics, music and scope are absolutely amazing and are a grand improvement over the Simcity 2000 game from many years back.
The Rush Hour Expansion pack corrects many of these mistakes by adding a freeway terminal interchange and you can also build wide four-lane avenues with medians and civic buildings are also improved on a vast scale (Larger police stations, Larger schools, etc.), and adds so many new things to this game like monorail, elevated rail to subway, new disasters, and a "U-Drive It" feature where you can actually drive around your newly built city.
This item is a must-have for Simcity fanatics. Just be sure you have lots of disk space or else the game might go at a cold molasses pace.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on January 5, 2004
SimCity 4 (SC4) is the latest entry in the popular, excellent series of city simulation games of the same name. The basic "point" of the game is to create, run and grow a city successfully from a fledgling community up to a megalopolis -- the game play is therefore open ended and limitless in variety.
As the city's mayor, you will need to balance wants and needs with your budget -- and in Sim City 4, that can be quite difficult because the budgetary aspects of the simulation are quite difficult (the "Rush Hour" expansion bundled with this edition mollifies this somewhat by providing an "easy" difficulty setting, which was not available with the original edition of SC4, that provides additional funds to start with, making the budgetary crisis easier to manage). You must zone effectively, make effective decisions about providing utilities, education and other civic resources, manage transportation and work-related issues and the like in order to make your city an attractive place and attract Sims to your town, increase the population and tax base and grow, grow, grow. And the fun doesn't stop there -- in SC4, you are able to widen the focus to include an entire region of interdependent cities and towns -- with one acting as the downtown, another as the industrial port town, and still another as the affluent suburb -- all linked together by utilities and transportation links into one major conurbanation. The game is really limitless in terms of what you can do with it once you get the basic hang of it, and it is not like other computer games that require extensive fingerwork or hand-eye coordination skills -- this is a pure strategy simulation in urban planning, development and management.
The "Rush Hour" expansion bundled with this edition adds a few notable features, including the difficulty setting noted above. Most of the more useful ones involve additional transportation options, such as overhead subway lines or Els and surface-level highways, that are more useful for when your cities achieve a certain size. In addition, there are some further bells and whistles, like the ability to name streets, parks, neighborhoods and natural formations and give them signs visible in the game, as well as the addition of "missions" -- essentially minigames within the larger game that have you playing the role of a policeman, fireman, etc., fulfilling a certain defined task in your city in exchange for the reward of unlocking a certain type of buidling or landmark that will later appear in your city.
Bottom line: if you have a penchant for (or even an interest in) urban planning or design, this is a great, immersive simulation that will keep you happily occupied for quite some time.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on June 1, 2004
Years ago I fell in love with the original SimCity, but hadn't played it or the subsequent versions until I bought this on a whim. It was one of the best purchases I have made!
SimCity is a scrolling map of an area where you, as Mayor, create the city with its surrounding industrial, residential and commercial zones. You build the infrastructure - roads, rail, utilities. You balance a budget as you control the funding of new developments. It is so lifelike that typical problems arise and you are responsible for solving them, else your popularity will dive.
The scope of SimCity4 is incredible in comparison to the previous versions; creating various districts in a region (multiple CBD's), creating beaches, subways, monorail, the list goes on. You also have the ability to create your own personalised landforms, including regional landforms from scratch. I haven't used any MySims in the Rush Hour expansion pack yet because there is so much to do first.
The only problem I see so far is the inability to scroll across districts that border one another. You can link them through roads etc, but you cannot scroll from one zone to the next. You need to exit one district to enter the next. I have a modern computer, so I haven't found any problems with running the software (as others have found).
But, I've had so much fun playing this version that time seems to travel five times faster than normal. Maybe I'm flying so fast, time is actually slowing down. Anyway, this game is very addictive and I find myself playing it at every opportunity. I thoroughly recommend it to everyone, especially town planners and politicians who could do with the practice.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on November 10, 2003
Let me start by saying that the first few times i played this game (my first SimCity game) i wasn't too happy. It seemed a little hard and made me feel that playing this game is more about money management than planning and building a city. However as i tried it out some more i got the hang of things and began to realize that the simulation is pretty realistic and has a lot of variety built in.
The key to enjoying this game is to understand that adding more amenities to the city - like colleges, garbage collection, hospitals, public transportation,... is expensive and to prevent those investments from draining your money, the city needs to expand as soon as every one of these things is added. So basically you need to zone more areas for residential, commercial and industrial growth as you add more facilities so that these facilities are shared by more people which makes them cheaper to you and more people means more tax revenue.
The other thing i found very interesting is how the city doesn't always need to grow the same way. You could decide to build a farming community where you don't bother much with education and pollution or you could build a high tech city where you have to make sure you're encouraging the right kind of industry and people to move into your city.
The Rush Hour expansion (which is part of this Deluxe edition) is more useful when your city gets really big (i would say 50,000+) so that you can now add different kinds of public transportation means. To make the right decision regarding the location of subway stations, etc. you can look at the traffic flow across the whole city or concentrate on one building and see how people are getting to this place.
Then there is also the next step of connecting cities together. This enables you to build an industrial city with high rises and a neighboring one thats an affluent suburb with big mansions and boutique stores.
This game has a lot of depth. It does take a little time to get the hang of it but hey... no pain, no gain :)
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on November 24, 2003
This game is fun, but is very easy. Within an hour of loading the game I had 3 cities with a large surplus. This took me weeks to do on SimCity 3000. My favorite new feature is the "U-Drive-It" mission where you drive around in a vechicle in your city. These are really fun and an easy way to get cash. These won't work terrible well if your computer is older. I have a P4 with 256 DDR ram and a 128 video card and I can barely play the car driving missions in large cities because my computer can't keep up and lags. Making multiple cities that can be inter-dependant is also very fun. I recommend this game to anyone that likes the SimCity series.
on May 31, 2004
I purchased SimCity 4 at least a year ago for $89 :( . I wasn't that happy with it, not being into the RTS genre at the time. So it sat there for around 11 months until I really got into the RTS "spirit". Then SimCity 4 really shined. It covers every detail of running a city, from taxes to landfill. The graphics are superb, even on my Dell 2400 computer, (which has an integregrated graphics device). You see Sims talking, driving, taking the train, everything. The structures are much more realistic then those of Sim City 3000,(which we have at school). It takes a little getting used to at first, but once you get the hang of it, It's quite easy.
1. Superb Graphics
2. Complete City Governing Coverage
3. Advisors are more help then in SC3
4. Rush Hour adds complete transportation coverage
5. Graphs and Data Views are more detailed
1. My computer deletes cities sometimes
2. Some Gliches with less powerful graphic cards or processors
This is not a game for people who hate fiddling with every detail of everything. Gamers new to RTS or expierienced will find this game enjoyable.
I thouroughly recommend it
on December 9, 2003
There are two complaints I have about the game: (1) placing water/land objects (marinas, etc.) is difficult and tiresome because the game requires that they be positioned in a very specific way that is not clear to the user, and (2) it is hard to switch between the game and other applications running on your PC (such as Outlook), even with a powerful processor and sufficient RAM.
I use a 1.7Ghz Pentium with 512 MB RAM and find it slow to switch applications; those who have faster processors and more RAM may find it easier, or this may be a deficiency with the design of the game. Regardless, I find it surprising that a game could use so much RAM and tie up the processor to such a great degree.
Other than these two, minor complaints, the game is impressive. The level of detail is greater than in previous versions.
One note about the 'missions': I find these silly and annoying and thus never use them. But, apparently from the reviews, there are those who swear by the, so as they say, different strokes for different folks.
Make sure your hard drive has at least three GB to spare when installing.
on January 2, 2004
I am a long time owner of the original SimCity. The new game is absolutely light years away from the original.
Not only is the AI much more advanced in SimCity4, but the functionality and graphics are tremendous. There is simply nothing as fulfilling after finally getting the city budget into the black than entering the sims screen and driving a police cruiser around the city running cars off the street. ;)
Also, The night time mode is absolutely beautiful, and I find myself exposing my sims to an eternal nocturnal environment. :)
The gameplay and superb graphics do come at a price. The memory and disk space needed to run the game are intensive for most computers that don't have the latest generation processing speeds, video cards and memory. The game worked seamlessly over Christmas on my parents laptop, but was sluggish on my computer which barely meets the minimum requirements. Much to my distress, the game will be shelved until I can purchase a newer system.