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SimCity Mod Allows For Indefinite Offline Play… Sort Of…

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
News
Tags:
EA, Maxis, Modders, PC games, SimCity, UKAzzer

SimCity Mod Allows For Indefinite Offline Play… Sort Of…

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.

You can expect our review of SimCity to be hitting the site in the very near future, but in the mean time you can always check out Matt’s take on the EU launch and my initial impressions of the game.

Add a comment4 comments
Quietus  Mar. 14, 2013 at 12:10

Fingers crossed. To hope even more, it'd be nice if Maxis caved in, and released a patch for offline play.

MattyPlant  Mar. 14, 2013 at 12:45

If they released an offline patch, there sales would skyrocket, this game looks amazing, so polished, ive played the beta, and enjoyed it. But the sizes and always on disappoint me which is why i never bought it.

What if i want to play it on my laptop, what if there's a power cut, my service provider is down or heck i didn't pay the bill. 40 notes down the drain, and that's without not having many integral parts of the previous titles included.

I really do want to buy it, but i just cant justify the money, for what is currently a "fancier" beta.

Here hoping the community does what it does best, and EA will see their mistakes!

DrTrouserPlank  Mar. 14, 2013 at 13:55

It's my understanding that they've deployed a patch to stop you doing this by making the files read only.

That's how much they want you modding their game.

I'm fairly confident the always online stuff isn't really required or isn't something that couldn't be easily spoofed locally. Ultimately I think this game will be moddable once we have managed to sever the always online umbilical cord. Maxis and EA certainly don't want you modding the game, that's for sure because it will seriously undermine the torrent of DLC they have got lined up for it.

socialjeebus  Mar. 14, 2013 at 13:56

If they released an offline patch, there sales would skyrocket, this game looks amazing, so polished, ive played the beta, and enjoyed it. But the sizes and always on disappoint me which is why i never bought it.

What if i want to play it on my laptop, what if there's a power cut, my service provider is down or heck i didn't pay the bill. 40 notes down the drain, and that's without not having many integral parts of the previous titles included.

I really do want to buy it, but i just cant justify the money, for what is currently a "fancier" beta.

Here hoping the community does what it does best, and EA will see their mistakes!


Once I heard about the stupid online single-player I decided that I wouldn't be buying until an offline patch was released (this was before I'd heard about the small city size too).

Even though it's actual pretty cheap here in Korea (about 22 quid - it's only 25 from the Origin store too) I still won't buy it until I get my offline patch (official or unofficial!).

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