SimCity vs. Cities: Skylines - Who Wins?

 Pages PREV 1 2
 

I would like to see the makers of Skylines hire all the laid of Maxis staff, the rest should quit EA too, then they all make the City Building Sim that the entire world has dreamed of; A city builder combined with a Sims styled game.

Robbo:

Darkness665:
A bunch of, most likely, Java code that ran on the servers so the various player cities could connect to each other.

Literally everything you said about the simulation being on the server is wrong and if it was it would probably be java? Wot.

Yes, I said it was most likely JAVA in some format. It is the most common language in the software as a service (SAS) business model currently. Not one that I would choose but I would never embrace SAS anyway.

As to wrong, well Maxis claimed otherwise: http://www.forbes.com/sites/erikkain/2013/03/17/ea-admits-simcity-could-have-run-offline-went-against-developers-vision/

Then you could follow up with: http://www.simcity.com/en_US/blog/article/simcity-offline-play-now-available-for-pc-and-mac

Which links to this: http://www.simcity.com/en_US/blog/article/engineering-offline-play-for-simcity

So actually what I wrote was accurate. What else were you wrong about today?

Darkness665:

Robbo:

Darkness665:
A bunch of, most likely, Java code that ran on the servers so the various player cities could connect to each other.

Literally everything you said about the simulation being on the server is wrong and if it was it would probably be java? Wot.

Yes, I said it was most likely JAVA in some format. It is the most common language in the software as a service (SAS) business model currently. Not one that I would choose but I would never embrace SAS anyway.

As to wrong, well Maxis claimed otherwise: http://www.forbes.com/sites/erikkain/2013/03/17/ea-admits-simcity-could-have-run-offline-went-against-developers-vision/

Then you could follow up with: http://www.simcity.com/en_US/blog/article/simcity-offline-play-now-available-for-pc-and-mac

Which links to this: http://www.simcity.com/en_US/blog/article/engineering-offline-play-for-simcity

So actually what I wrote was accurate. What else were you wrong about today?

From your first link:

Update: Turns out one simple line of code is all it takes to turn your SimCity into an offline game. Something so simple, even the public can do it.

Now I might have misunderstood you here, but what I thought you said was that it would be problematic to get it to run without being connected to the servers. If that is what you said, then your own link actually debunks that.

As much as I looooooove Skylines, I do miss the certain quirky sense of humor in the Sim City games, and the disasters that others mentioned. I also don't agree that "the modders will do it" is an excuse for some things missing that are staples of city builders.

I would love to get to a point where a superhero protects the city from big crime/monster problems, but this is leaning more towards realism

I like to think of SimCity '13 as EA's Ultimate Acid Test:
EA: "Is the market stupid enough yet? Will they buy this?
Are their standards low enough that we can crank out literally ANY piece of shit we want and still make money?"

Because that's the only explanation for how they thought pushing Simcity to sale in that state was a good idea.
Thank goodness it didn't take off, because that might have been the end right there.
Like, "This is how Idiocracy becomes reality".

Contrast to the developers that actually gave a damn about the gameplay, rather than how to convert it into a digital cattle ranch.

Yopaz:
Now I might have misunderstood you here, but what I thought you said was that it would be problematic to get it to run without being connected to the servers. If that is what you said, then your own link actually debunks that.

You misunderstood several things. The hack, by players, was a very simple tweak. It allowed single player - a very simplistic version of it. I understand that it took one line to enable it, or more exactly, to not require the server connection. It did not provide the simulation that was provided on the server. Nor could it.

The posts I linked to explained that the (wrong headed) management decision to enforce mandatory online play resulted in having the servers providing much of the interaction and simulation of events for the cities to interact with, e.g. the cities that other players were playing that connected to the player's city; a place to source products and a sink the output from the player city. The engineering post clearly states that it took 6 1/2 months to modify the game to provide the functionality that the servers were providing. I am a cynic by nature but I find it hard to believe that EA/Maxis would require that much time to modify one line of source, be that code, script or initialization file.

Recall that EA/Maxis wanted SimCity to run on everything. They didn't want the experience to be worse on low-powered systems. So quite a bit of the simulations were done on the server. I assumed they were done in Java, or a variant, as that would be the most common solution for the software as a service (SAS) in the modern server world. Not one that I would recommend mind you. Java and node.js are languages for simpletons and will suck resources, providing less than the spreadsheet claims it should support. And their servers were massively under-provisioned in the rollout although no one has stated that the server side language was the issue. Of course, no Java programmer would ever admit that even if it was the only possible reason.

TL;DR:
SimCity as originally released did not do all the simulations required to run the simulation. Exactly what doesn't really matter. A quick hack allowed the game to run on the local machine without having to connect to the EA/Maxis servers. Six and half months of engineering effort resulted in moving simulations that were previously run on the server to run on the player's system. It was obviously more than one line of anything, much less code.

Darkness665:

TL;DR:
SimCity as originally released did not do all the simulations required to run the simulation. Exactly what doesn't really matter. A quick hack allowed the game to run on the local machine without having to connect to the EA/Maxis servers. Six and half months of engineering effort resulted in moving simulations that were previously run on the server to run on the player's system. It was obviously more than one line of anything, much less code.

The source you provided claimed it was enough to change one line of programming to make it offline. Either you are wrong or your source is wrong. The source you provided doesn't even prove that server does some of the work. It says they wanted the game to be social and that the online mode was necessary to maintain the intended spirit of the game.

Can you provide an actual source for your claim?

image

Sometimes you need just a small dedicated team to provide what the public wants in order to bring in profit.

Well, SC4 is still a great game, there are lots of mods out there and-
Wait, you are comparing it to SimCity? As in, the 2013 one?
How is this even a question?

Yopaz:
The source you provided claimed it was enough to change one line of programming to make it offline. Either you are wrong or your source is wrong. The source you provided doesn't even prove that server does some of the work. It says they wanted the game to be social and that the online mode was necessary to maintain the intended spirit of the game.

Can you provide an actual source for your claim?

Do you actually read and comprehend? The one line of code was a hack, by a player. As I understood it, the 'mod' told the game not to connect to the server or to ignore that connection. The end result was a single player game that sort of worked but most of the simulation of SimCity was lacking as that work was done on EA servers, which the mod prevented the game from accessing. This server based simulation was because somebody at EA/Maxis decided their customers would only be interested in playing online with other player's cities providing or using resources.

What my source did state was that it took six and half months to implement a proper solution instead of providing a significantly simpler but invalid experience that the mod provided. A city simulation with little simulation.

Darkness665:

Yopaz:
The source you provided claimed it was enough to change one line of programming to make it offline. Either you are wrong or your source is wrong. The source you provided doesn't even prove that server does some of the work. It says they wanted the game to be social and that the online mode was necessary to maintain the intended spirit of the game.

Can you provide an actual source for your claim?

Do you actually read and comprehend? The one line of code was a hack, by a player. As I understood it, the 'mod' told the game not to connect to the server or to ignore that connection. The end result was a single player game that sort of worked but most of the simulation of SimCity was lacking as that work was done on EA servers, which the mod prevented the game from accessing. This server based simulation was because somebody at EA/Maxis decided their customers would only be interested in playing online with other player's cities providing or using resources.

What my source did state was that it took six and half months to implement a proper solution instead of providing a significantly simpler but invalid experience that the mod provided. A city simulation with little simulation.

I did read it and as far as your links go they only say that the multiplayer portion of the game would not work in an offline mode which isn't the same as saying that the servers do some of the work. In fact the small modification of the code allowed players to build in a larger area than when they were connected to the servers.

We all understand that online multiplayer features require an internet connection. Maybe I am stupid here and I am missing something crucial so can you please quote to me the party that says Sim City could only work properly if a server lent its processing power to make it run? This is what you're claiming, quote me an unbiased source that says this because none of your sources actually confirm the claim you're making.

The fact that it took them 6 months. That's not evidence of anything. You are just coughing up excuses for DRM the same way companies who push it do. You claim to be a cynic, yet you believe Maxis/EA's claim that the always on DRM was beneficial for the people playing with only weak ambiguous evidence to support it.

Provide a proper source or simply admit that you might be wrong here.

Yopaz:
I did read it and as far as your links go they only say that the multiplayer portion of the game would not work in an offline mode which isn't the same as saying that the servers do some of the work. In fact the small modification of the code allowed players to build in a larger area than when they were connected to the servers.

We all understand that online multiplayer features require an internet connection. Maybe I am stupid here and I am missing something crucial so can you please quote to me the party that says Sim City could only work properly if a server lent its processing power to make it run? This is what you're claiming, quote me an unbiased source that says this because none of your sources actually confirm the claim you're making.

The fact that it took them 6 months. That's not evidence of anything. You are just coughing up excuses for DRM the same way companies who push it do. You claim to be a cynic, yet you believe Maxis/EA's claim that the always on DRM was beneficial for the people playing with only weak ambiguous evidence to support it.

Provide a proper source or simply admit that you might be wrong here.

I never claimed DRM was beneficial. Quick smoking that stuff and listen. Don't blame me for DRM, I hate it and EA.

What I stated was from their quotes, which you obviously didn't either read or are unable to comprehend. The engineering blog explained they had to change the code (yes, actual programming) to work on the player's system. Which was a big concern because, in their glorious concept, SimCity would run fine on any system, even lowly little laptops. Why? Because some of the heavy lifting was done on the server. I realize you don't understand what the engineer's blog means, but I spent decades in software engineering and that is what he was talking about. The player provided mod only removed the forced connection to the server. Which was a big problem because it made many think that EA had this complete game that did everything they wanted only they refused to let them play it. Many did play it, although the game was a shell of its planned glory (snort). It did allow several things that poisoned the view of the players, larger cities and off line play being but two.

The engineering blog stated quite clearly that it was a half of year's work, with the programming team - not just him, to modify the product. Many of the UI elements had to be modified because the information was no longer provided by the server but generated (simulated) on the player's computer. Their stupid idea for the game was to have their servers provide the simulation work for the effort outside of the player's single city.

From my view as a retired software engineer they could not have done a worse job. My review of their software/server project follows, feel free to ignore it like you have the rest of the information. You obviously don't understand anything about programming or systems engineering. You have your precious misperceptions and you won't give them up. Fine.

First, if they had to have their idiotic DRM those servers should have been cloud provisioned to allow for the massive registration that a quarter million players logging in at the same time should be able to at least register their copy. Someone had to know the first days numbers, at least within 25K, so even if they only needed the cloud expansion for a day or a week it would have easily adjusted to the extra load. Not that adjusting to such a load meant everyone would get registered in under a minute, but it wouldn't have been the complete disaster it was.

Second, if the plan was to have the servers provide the inter-city simulation then a backup solution that ran on the player's machine was needed. If only because what happens when the internet is down, housemates are streaming Netflix, etc. so it is definitely something I would have insisted on. Or what happens when one is playing on a laptop and closes the lid, only to open it again down at Starbucks, or the airport? Network speed drops from their cable modem wireless down to maybe old school DSL speeds. The game goes from playing as planned to a crawl, much like moving from a modern laptop to one from five years ago.

Third, regardless if the idiotic plan was forced on them by JR (EA ex CEO) and upper level management they never should have bought in so completely to it. It was doomed to failure. Provide the basic simulation on the player's machine. And not just the simple crap they did, the inter-city bit was the most important because with out that nothing really happens in the city anyway. All the supply and demand from other cities was required for their vision to work.

Finally, if you are going to provide such crap to their players they why didn't somebody figure out that a simple edit to the .ini file could get around the all so important restrictions? Beyond stupid, that is EA and now Maxim is no more. Nobody from EA or Maxim ever posted regarding the weird city size limitation. I suspect it was to restrict the size of the cities to fit next to each other. Another dumb limitation. A reasonable one would have been tied to the available memory and disk space on the client machine. Shrug, who knows?

I have linked these before but WTH, why not try it again? Maybe you can get someone else to read them to you: http://www.ea.com/news/simcity-update-straight-answers-from-lucy

So, could we have built a subset offline mode? Yes. But we rejected that idea because it didn't fit with our vision. We did not focus on the "single city in isolation" that we have delivered in past SimCities. We recognize that there are fans - people who love the original SimCity - who want that. But we're also hearing from thousands of people who are playing across regions, trading, communicating and loving the Always-Connected functionality. The SimCity we delivered captures the magic of its heritage but catches up with ever-improving technology.

They could have. They didn't. The real SimCity was only completed after the fact. And only because they had a revolt in their harmonious simulation. How much ran exactly where? Nobody outside of Maxim knows and they are gone. However, I believe the engineer that solved the problem and how the team solved it. Not some journalist or gamer looking for some vast conspiracy that isn't there. Bad decisions made one right after the other. Typical EA.

From the engineering blog, which you either didn't read or cannot comprehend: http://www.simcity.com/en_US/blog/article/engineering-offline-play-for-simcity

I wish it were as simple as flipping a switch and telling the game to communicate with a dummy client rather than our server, but it's more than that. Entire calculations had to be rewritten in order to make the game function correctly.

SimCity was written to rely on the servers. The game routinely pings the servers for critical pieces of data (region status, workers, trading etc.) and it relies on that information to keep the simulation moving. This meant rewriting the entire system, which previously existed in Java, and putting it into C++. We've had to knock out the internet pipe stuff. There's lots of code that hits the servers looking for information. We've had to write a lot of code to produce that data locally, specifically for region information.

And there is the quote that directly states what I stated and you groused about previously (which is why I believe you didn't read it or you are unable to comprehend engineering speak). The server code was written in Java (typical of today's server side solutions) and had to be moved to C++ because the client itself is in C++. Both are programming languages, neither are .ini files. And Java on the client sucks from a performance standpoint.

Yes, I am a programmer, aka software engineer and have even managed ... software engineers. I get this stuff. I lived it. I still do.

It is beyond tragic that you don't even understand the conversation that you drag on while merely shining your ignorance with that same old cloth.

Darkness665:
[quote="Yopaz" post="6.872834.21915943"]Snip

Edit: No, you know what, let's just end this, your sources don't support your claim and you refuse to admit that and I won't waste time arguing with someone who outright refuses to be reasonable and admit that.

Yopaz:
Edit: No, you know what, let's just end this, your sources don't support your claim and you refuse to admit that and I won't waste time arguing with someone who outright refuses to be reasonable and admit that.

For you to be reasonable you need to do a few things differently than your past: Take a few coding classes, learn some code.
Figure out what is commonly done in server land, see why they use Java or its weird offshoots.
Learn a little C++ (although C is much better) then figure out how clients and servers tie together.
Read John Carmack's explanation of how he modified the network code at id Software.
Learn how game engines work and that most of the modern code is in C++ (to my sorrow).
Look into simulations, computers are good at it - occasionally. One of my hobbies is simulations, not games but proper simulations.
Read the changed .ini file to see what the mod actually did and play the game with out the mod, with the mod and then the new release that does exactly as I said it did.
Yep, different. Good? Not so much from everything I read.
Discover that back story on Maxim, EA and the infamous JR, CEO from Hell.
Write a short essay on why single player mode is being ignored by the ignorant corporate bosses that truly do not understand games, gamers and simulations in particular.
Then we might be on the same page, one can hope. Perchance to dream that you could be reasonable, as indeed you are far, far from being reasonable or correct.

As to the month of delay, I don't check in on the escapist very often. Too many good sources were cut, I only come by for Yahtzee and Shamus. Oh look, something in my account. And of course, it was you. Some silly gaming thing as well in the escapists gaming the gamer toy set.

Buh Bye Yopaz. It's been.

Darkness665:

Yopaz:
Edit: No, you know what, let's just end this, your sources don't support your claim and you refuse to admit that and I won't waste time arguing with someone who outright refuses to be reasonable and admit that.

For you to be reasonable you need to do a few things differently than your past: Take a few coding classes, learn some code.
Figure out what is commonly done in server land, see why they use Java or its weird offshoots.
Learn a little C++ (although C is much better) then figure out how clients and servers tie together.
Read John Carmack's explanation of how he modified the network code at id Software.
Learn how game engines work and that most of the modern code is in C++ (to my sorrow).
Look into simulations, computers are good at it - occasionally. One of my hobbies is simulations, not games but proper simulations.
Read the changed .ini file to see what the mod actually did and play the game with out the mod, with the mod and then the new release that does exactly as I said it did.
Yep, different. Good? Not so much from everything I read.
Discover that back story on Maxim, EA and the infamous JR, CEO from Hell.
Write a short essay on why single player mode is being ignored by the ignorant corporate bosses that truly do not understand games, gamers and simulations in particular.
Then we might be on the same page, one can hope. Perchance to dream that you could be reasonable, as indeed you are far, far from being reasonable or correct.

As to the month of delay, I don't check in on the escapist very often. Too many good sources were cut, I only come by for Yahtzee and Shamus. Oh look, something in my account. And of course, it was you. Some silly gaming thing as well in the escapists gaming the gamer toy set.

Buh Bye Yopaz. It's been.

I demand that you provide a source for your claims.

You demand that I believe you because you're a software engineer (I have no proof of this), you demand that I believe your claims even though you haven't provided a source that directly confirms your claim and you demand that I take classes in programming.

It's funny how you claim I am being unreasonable. I have never claimed to know anything about programing and beyond the most basic parts of Latex I don't. I'm in no way qualified to discuss programing, but I can still demand sources for any claim made.

 Pages PREV 1 2

Reply to Thread

Posting on this forum is disabled.