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SimCity hands-on preview: building Port Foozle

A tale of two cities

I played SimCity for about five hours at Maxis' offices last week, and I started by building Port Foozle, a landlocked gambling town with a very deceptive name. Following that, I built an actual port town in the same region, hoping it would feed Foozle with tourists. I didn't play long enough to realize all of my long-term plans, but I'm about to start over in this weekend's closed beta, and I already know that all I want to do is keep playing until the sun rises and my eyelids turn to lead.

I like a lot about SimCity, and it's going to murder tons of my time, but (aw, bummer that there has to be a "but") I have some early criticisms. It's like I'm eating my favorite ice cream, but it's dripping on my hands and making them all sticky. I hate having sticky hands, but I keep eating, because the ice cream is so damn good. Especially the first bite, so I'll start with that.

Tyler Wilde
Tyler Wilde

Tyler grew up in Silicon Valley alongside Apple and Microsoft, playing games like Zork and Arkanoid on the early personal computers 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. After work, he practices boxing and adds to his 1,200 hours in Rocket League.