The power of the community: Case SimCity 4

I grew up playing SimCity, as I’m sure some of you did.  The appeal of simulating how a city would grow and try to create something that would reflect my own choices was definitely very strong.  The last version of the franchise SimCity 4 was released in 2004, and its publisher (EA) has pretty much discontinued support for the game and stopped any sequels.

Imagine my surprise when I found Simtropolis.com, an online community of SimCity players.  Not only do they have City blogs and chat, but a huge archive or user-generated content to improve your experience of the game.  Over the years, the users have created maps (so that you can build your city in the site of Helsinki, for example), landmarks (like the Angel of Independence from Mexico City or the Atomium from Brussels) that you can use in the city you build and other general improvements to the game that the designers hadn’t originally thought of, an example of which you can find below.

It is amazing how much people can do, when you give them means to do it.  A community of devoted fans is all you need.

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