Apparently achieving a feat they described as ‘impossible’ a mere 10 months ago, Maxis have announced that the next patch for SimCity will allow gamers to play the game without being connected to the internet.
Currently in late stages of development, Patch 10 will add ‘Single Player Mode’, which apparently gives the player all of the functionality of a solo region but with none of the need to be constantly connected to EA’s servers. Players using this mode will retain any DLC that has already been downloaded to that system, but will have to forgo features such as access to the online store and leaderboards. Perhaps even more interestingly, the addition of a mode not dependent upon locked-down multiplayer servers will open the wider game up to modification, with Maxis giving the modding community their blessing (albeit with a number of caveats and legal agreements) to alter the offline game as they see fit.
Whilst the news should be of great interest to those players that have been holding out for a proper single-player SimCity experience, some would argue that this is too little too late for the beleaguered city-building game. Whilst the game was lauded for it’s polished graphics and soundtrack upon its release last March, the game launched with numerous missing or apparently broken features, and the game’s online-only requirement led to the game being rendered mostly unplayable for a quite frankly embarrassing amount of time. The feeling of ill will between gamers and Maxis’ product was further exacerbated by a series of PR claims describing the addition of an offline mode as being ‘impossible’, despite hackers having proven the contrary a mere week after the game’s launch.
Whilst a release date for the patch has yet to be announced, SimCity Dev Test volunteers should expect to get their hands on a beta version in the near future.
(Source: SimCity Blog)