Feeds

SimCity 2000

Spline of the times

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Splines, of the reticulating variety

Before all that, however, it was essential to get your city off to the best possible start and, as I’ve already said, this was a far tougher task than it was in the original SimCity. So-called 'Reticulating Splines' were first introduced here as a means to calculate an entirely random landscape canvas upon which your city would be crafted. Wright coined the term, which would eventually be adopted as a catch-all for any environmental randomness algorithm used within game development.

What such grandiose a description for a simple premise actually meant was that you could never be sure how much water and land relief would be present on your claim from the start. Just as well then that the SimCity 2000 engine allowed you to spin your viewpoint around through four set perspectives.

SimCity 2000

Raiders of the lost arcologies

Such natural features meant there was scope to sculpt your city in new and ever more gorgeous ways too. The lay of the land and areas of water allowing for studiously designed takes on Venice, or else the chance for wholesale terraforming according to personal taste.

Replaying the game before writing this, I was also surprised by quite how tough it was to initially get Sims moving on in. Those most fussy of virtual people turning their collective nose up at any conurbation that had inadequate power and water supplies, a lack of a prerequisite amount of residential, commercial and industrial zones; not to mention something approaching a road network with links to surrounding towns.

Read all about it

Cater to their whims, however, and your people will let their love be known, throwing parades in your honour - all of which are reported in the dependable local newspaper. Indeed the periodical was something of a triumph, the yearly editions offering an insight into the opinions of your people with such nuggets of advice as ‘Naysayers say nay’, among others.

As before, natural – and not so natural – disasters would be unleashed upon your city to test the mettle of your emergency services, while scenarios appeared once again to push your mayoral skills to the limits, but it was the richness of your city that really made SimCity 2000 shine.

Maxis added so much variation into the game’s residential, commercial and industrial zones, as well as specialised structures, that above all else it was just a sheer joy to watch your city grow. The ebb-and-flow of gentrification mesmerising the player, particularly if you played on llama or cheetah speeds which would have the years flashing by.

SimCity 2000

Specific heights

In writing this, and going back to SimCity 2000 - by way of the ingeniously programmed DOSBox - I’ve been reminded of a time when sequels really were a genuine step-up, not like the glorified expansions that can qualify as follow-ups these days. SimCity 2000 encapsulated all that made its predecessor great and took it up a notch, and though it’s a tad dated today, it still provides the purest form of Will Wright’s build-'em-up for my money. ®

Release 1994
Developer Will Wright
Publisher Maxis
Platforms Mac, Amiga, DOS, Windows, SNES etc

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
PEAK APPLE: iOS 8 is least popular Cupertino mobile OS in all of HUMAN HISTORY
'Nerd release' finally staggers past 50 per cent adoption
Tim Cook: The classic iPod HAD TO DIE, and this is WHY
Apple, er, couldn’t get parts for HDD models
Apple spent just ONE DOLLAR beefing up the latest iPad Air 2
New iPads look a lot like the old one. There's a reason for that
Google Glassholes are UNDATEABLE – HP exec
You need an emotional connection, says touchy-feely MD... We can do that
Microsoft fitness bands slapped on wrists: All YOUR HEALTH DATA are BELONG TO US
Wearable will deliver 'actionable insights for healthier living'
Lawyers mobilise angry mob against Apple over alleged 2011 Macbook Pro crapness
We suffered 'random bouts of graphical distortion' - fanbois
Caterham Seven 160 review: The Raspberry Pi of motoring
Back to driving's basics with a joyously legal high
prev story

Whitepapers

Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
Internet Security Threat Report 2014
An overview and analysis of the year in global threat activity: identify, analyze, and provide commentary on emerging trends in the dynamic threat landscape.