SimCity E3 trailer and screens show off tilt-shifted simulation, a purple monster


Education connection

This is more like it -- a quaint college town. And look at all those little people. According to Lead Designer Stone Librande, the GlassBox engine can simulate tens of thousands of agents at a time. They live based on flowchart logic: Do I have money? I'll go shopping. Am I broke? I'll find a job. Are there no jobs? I'll go to the park. And so on.

Like buildings, Quigley says that rendering all these little citizens required some vaguely-stated optimization cleverness: “For the Sims, we've come up with this rendering technique, where they look fully 3D—they're lit, they're animated, they're full-on models—but a technique where we can render them in the thousands.”

Tyler Wilde
Executive Editor

Tyler grew up in Silicon Valley during the rise of personal computers, playing games like Zork and Arkanoid on the early PCs his parents brought home. He was later captivated by Myst, SimCity, Civilization, Command & Conquer, Bushido Blade (yeah, he had Bleem!), and all the shooters they call "boomer shooters" now. In 2006, Tyler wrote his first professional review of a videogame: Super Dragon Ball Z for the PS2. He thought it was OK. In 2011, he joined PC Gamer, and today he's focused on the site's news coverage. His hobbies include amateur boxing and adding to his 1,200-plus hours in Rocket League.