It’s a tough time to be a PC gamer. The platform has more games spanning more genres than ever, and even standard PC hardware can deliver crisp, photorealistic graphics. At the same time, some of the biggest titles in recent memory were a complete mess on PC at launch, e.g Cyberpunk 2077, Star Wars Jedi: Survivor, Redfallthe Dead Space and Resident Evil 4 remakes and The end of us part I. Unfortunately, we might add Cities: Skylines II to this list — which means I’m looking forward to the day when we can look back and say, “Man, remember when this game broke? I’m glad Colossal Order fixed things and properly apologized to their community.” At least, I hope we will.
This week’s stories
Microsoft, macro reduction
Three months after Activision closed its acquisition of Blizzard, Microsoft He laid off 1,900 people In the Xbox, ZeniMax and Activision Blizzard divisions. It follows a spate of layoffs in video games in recent months — nearly 9,000 people were laid off in the industry last year, and nearly 6,000 jobs were already lost in January. This is a legitimate crisis. Along with the layoffs, Microsoft has officially canceled OdysseyA survival game that Blizzard has been working on for six years.
Palworld it’s the zeitgeist
It’s still 2024 Palworld. The game comes from a small, fledgling team, and it’s billed as “Armed Pokemon,” though it’s more of the same. Ark in terms of gameplay. Whichever reference you choose, Palworld it’s so popular that it’s #2 on the Steam charts for the most concurrent players of all time. PUBG. With all this attention, it was only a matter of time before Nintendo launched – Pokemon publisher is investigating Palworld For potential copyright infringement, and we’ll see how that plays out in the coming weeks.
Cities: Skylines II and toxicity
Original Cities: Skylines It came out in 2015 and ate up the audience EA left behind SimCityIt fell in 2013 and was a mess. Cities: Skylines scratched that city-building itch, and over the years the developers at Colossal Order have worked closely with players to foster a thriving mod community in the Steam Workshop. Mods, special assets and let’s play videos have been a critical aspect Cities: Skylines‘ long-term success.
After months of marketing collaborations with content creators such as Biffa and City Planner Plays last October, Cities: Skylines II came out – and it happened a disappointment for many players. The game was originally announced as a simultaneous PC and console release, but it is only available on PC and there is no specific timeline as to when the other versions will be released. No word on a Mac or Linux launch. There is also no official mod support Cities: Skylines II, and when the feature does launch, it will be through the game’s publisher, Paradox, not Steam Workshop. On top of all that, Colossal Order raised the game’s minimum and recommended PC specs just a month before release, and the new requirements made it unplayable for a large group of players. Even with a capable device, Cities: Skylines II full of visual and mechanical errors. It just feels like it was filmed in Colossal Order SimCity.
The studio is constantly rolling out updates, and CEO Mariina Hallikainen has admitted that the game lacks some promised and highly-touted features, such as mod support. But in his final note to the public, he said the conversation with the players had become toxic and called for civility. Hallikainen told Engadget that he’s seen an increase in personal attacks against developers and other players on forums and social media.
Community members like Philip, the man behind the YouTube channel City Planner Plays, were surprised to hear the word “toxicity.” He told Engadget he saw an increase in negativity and frustration from players, but not toxicity. Reviews for Philip and many other special cities: Skylines players have been justified. They want Colossal Order to take responsibility for the release situation, issue an apology and provide a plan to fix things going forward. Maybe add some free in-game perks too.
Collaboration with the community is what made the original game so successful, and the sequel could certainly benefit from crowdsourced improvements. Hallikainen told Engadget that working with content creators and moderators helped guide innovation. Cities: Skylines II after release and the studio still loves working with these players.
This is just the beginning Cities: Skylines II. Colossal Order intends to support and expand the game for the next 10 years. Original Cities: Skylines It didn’t have all the bells, whistles and mods when it first came out in 2015, and the sequel starts in a similar position. Colossal Order sees Cities: Skylines II as a new foundation, but its core community expected a more complete experience from the jump – especially people who paid $90 for the Ultimate Edition.
we’ve seen headlines like Man has no Heaven and Cyberpunk 2077 Overcome rough starts and grow into beloved games, and Colossal Order has a solid track record when it comes to long-term support. However, options like early access and paid beta exist for a reason. At the very least, players should know that they are spending money to play a new game or finish it.
I have played Reload Persona 3, and now that the embargo has been lifted, I can say it’s great. Otherwise, my desire to shoot the Grandmaster Overwatch 2 continues unabated.