January 28, 2013 by Tim

I picked up access to the beta for the new SimCity, and got to play with it for a little bit. It looks pretty neat. I haven’t really played a SimCity since the original way back in middle school, but the game looked great and still felt really familiar, albeit with a bit of a “The Sims” flair to it.

The beta is limited to an hour per session (meaning that you can play for an hour, but can’t save, and you have to start a new city each new session), and a lot of the buildings/options aren’t available in this build. Like better sewage treatment options.

SimCity gets pretty in-depth, with zoning areas for residence, commercial and industrial, working out power grids and water lines, and yes, even a view where you can look below your city and actually watch the poop moving around.

Normally it will just sit there in big brown blobs but eventually, as you might guess, that gets to be a problem. You only have one option to handle it in the beta, which is essentially a station that pumps the sewage out into the ground. Unfortunately it does not put out fires, so I think it’s typically best to set it up as far away from your city as you can.

Overall the game looks pretty great, if you’re into city builders, but for a game like this an hour is nowhere near enough time to get anything going. I’d say I would definitely pick it up in March, but Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate may have something to say about that. We’ll see.

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