What’s New in Sim City 4

Sim City 4 has beefed up versions of many central Sim City features, including more landmarks, more landscaping control, better graphics, more missions, and a bigger selection of advisors. However, the highlights of Sim City 4 are its completely new features. Sim City 4 stands apart from its predecessors in three major ways: the Sim continent feature lets you build and connect multiple cities in a single game, web interactivity lets you download cities built by other players and share your own creations, and automated roadway placement frees you from the hassle of minutiae without taking away your control. Read on to learn more about the exciting new features of Sim City 4.

Sim Continent
One of the most exciting features that sets Sim City 4 apart from previous versions of Sim City is that players now have the chance to build and play with more than once city at a time. Instead of being confined to the area of a single city with fictional neighboring towns, Sim City 4 players have access to a whole “continent” of city tiles that they can build on. Sim City 4 allows the player to build multiple separate cities on tiles adjacent to each other, and play with each individually for as long as desired. Then, players can link the cities to each other with roads and rail, have them share water supplies or power grids, and watch the results as Sims from other towns start to interact. Now that you can start a whole new city while waiting for a previous city to grow or change, you can have constant Sim City action. This means there are more opportunities to solve new kinds of challenges in Sim City 4 than in any other game.

Web Interactive
If you want to really try something new in Sim City 4, you can go to the Sim City 4 website, download cities built by other players around the world, place them on a “tile” on your Sim continent and play them! You can play these cities individually, link them up with cities you’ve built yourself, or even raze them to the ground by attacking them with monsters or natural disasters. The fact that players are constantly uploading new tiles means that there is literally no limit to the number of cities that you can download and play with. Plus, you can upload your own Sim City 4 tiles, and know that halfway around the world, somebody is playing with your city!

Automated Transportation
Sim City 4 boasts an exciting new feature: automated roadways. For years, Sim City players have complained about the hassle of laying down a road grid piece by piece, and about the hurdle of having to demolish all of the streets to replace them with bigger highways and major avenues once a city’s population blossomed. In Sim City 4, these problems are solved. When you specify a square of land in Sim City 4 as an industrial, residential, or commercial zone, the program automatically lays down a grid of streets surrounding the zone. That means you can grow your city with a single click of the mouse instead of having to constantly struggle with roads and rail. Then, when it’s time to upgrade your streets to something larger, you can use the “upgrade” tool to beef up a roadway without having to manually demolish roads or buildings in the process. As in earlier Sim City editions, the major decisions about how to lay out the roadways are still up to you in Sim City 4, but the hassle of connecting every single building to your larger grid is gone. This makes game play in Sim City 4 more about tactical choice and less about fiddling with unwieldy details than any previous version of the blockbuster game.

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