Ability To Edit Freeway Included, With More On The Way
Well, this is an interesting turn of events. We’ve already had sneaking suspicions about the possibilities of the game being capable of offline play (with the servers in truth just being cloud saves) but thanks to an intrepid modder it appears we’ve taken the first steps of overcoming the online restriction. A user named UKAzzer took to Youtube and Reddit to show off his handiwork – a mod that removes the game’s ability to close a game in progress if the player is not connected to the server for around 20 minutes. This allows for a kind of offline play, although at the time of writing there are still a number of restrictions in place.
As the modder explains over on Reddit, this mod is all thanks to the ability to access the debug mode, and while it doesn’t feature all the bells and whistles of the developer ‘s build (so no terraforming, sadly) it does allow for the editing of highways both inside and outside of the current city plot limits. “This shows that highway editing will be easily possible, AND that editing outside of the artificially small city boundaries should be very viable too, potentially (since you can place roads and rails that snap anywhere on-screen)” explains UKAzzer.
The Youtube video (found above) demonstrates this in action, but it’s worth pointing out that at no point do we see buildings being placed outside of the current limits, meaning that while there is hope of us being able to expand our operations, we’re stuck with the plot sizes we currently have for now. As far as the “offline” play goes, players will still need to have access to the servers to save their cities, and access to regional features (such as multiple plots) along with global trading are disabled until you reconnect, but it’s an interesting first step for modders and frustrated players alike.
This has of course drawn attention to fears that Maxis could patch in a way to stop this from happening, but it has been discovered that the game was intended to be moddable thanks to a tweet from creative director Ocean Quigley last month. It’s by no means the official party line, but hopefully this will mean work can continue towards a truly offline version of the game, be it in an official capacity or not.