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ea simcity cloud computing

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#16 vetneufuse


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Posted 26 December 2012 - 20:51

So what EA is really saying is buy a game for up to $80 now... and in 2 years when its not being played as much shut down the servers and tell everyone too bad?..... EA has a horrible track record with online games doing this.... i want SC5 but the must have a server connection thing is BS... I want to be able to play this game 10yrs from now like I can still play SC2000

#17 TokiToki



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Posted 26 December 2012 - 20:54

EA has a horrible track record when it comes to shutting down servers of previous versions. I can totally see why people would bemoan an always-on connection.

Not just that, EA will absolutely shut down the servers if the number of active users drop below a certain threshold.

"EA's policy states that the company shuts down servers for games that represent fewer than 1 percent of peak online activity across all EA games."

#18 Phouchg


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Posted 26 December 2012 - 20:55

while i can understand why they would want to go this route my opinion is that it is not a good solution being that a lot of people that will play this game are children or even people that just simply do not have internet access, as brought up in the article it is the same story that people brought up with Diablo 3. However, as I said back then, if you do not agree, just do not buy the game.

You (and half of this thread) miss the point by 180 degrees. The always-on DRM train departed *that* way.

Although cloud computing explanation does not hold water anyway. While the new SimCity does have the most sophisticated simulation engine thus far, working at the level of individual units instead of generic statistics, and as such large cities will require accordingly powerful computers, putting even a part of that processing on some distant servers is unfeasible at best.

* requires real time connection - otherwise as soon as the server doesn't reply in a timely manner (and certainly not the three minute window currently being allowed), your city basically either halts as a whole (which is still good) or self-destructs, because units fall out of sync unpredictably

* require superfast connection - let's assume the state of a single unit is being updated once per second (and that's generous). Update package is, say, 32 bytes, holding at least its ID, its position and work it performs (that's also generous). For 100000 units that's about 3 MB raw data each second. All essential, given the nature of simulation and the very idea of the engine. Compresses quite badly, being mostly integers and floats.

Running certain rules for each such unit and updating the numbers accordingly is well inside the capabilities of a modern computer.

And then the last thing - cloud computing costs a lot as it is. Without, say, monthly subscription it is absolute horseshyte to even consider.

One and only way it might work is if clients only receive a video stream of their actions. It also requires a stable and reasonably fast connection, but with far less tragic consequences if it fails. But it isn't video streaming, too, because of three minute window and costs, again.

#19 xWhiplash


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Posted 26 December 2012 - 21:04

Wouldn't companies release a patch or something to disable the always on requirement if they take the servers down? Has there ever been a game the requires this and no longer works (MMOs do not count)?

#20 Perfect72


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Posted 26 December 2012 - 21:04

Man, this has just ruined my day. I couldn't wait for the next Sim City, but yeah, after the bullsh*t Diablo 3 fiasco, I am going to pass.

One of my favorite parts about Sim City was the modding that could be done to it. I am definitely voting with my wallet here. I am surprised EA, after watching Activision pull this crap, would do it too... Though I don't know why that surprises me anymore. Well, so much for Sim City for me. I may wait until an offline crack is made available just like D3. (Though by time it came out, it was too late for me, and I could not give a damn about the game anymore.)

#21 McKay


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Posted 26 December 2012 - 21:18

Vote with your wallet, I would absolutely kill for a new Sim City. I LOVE the previous games. I'm not buying it though.
I flat out will not buy a game with always on DRM.

The issue is EA will unflinchingly kill the Sim City series if it doesn't sell well. They'll move onto the next franchise and adhere themselves to it.

#22 +Lingwo


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Posted 26 December 2012 - 21:30

This is going to end in tears. EA never get a launch right. So i'm guessing the servers will just crash and burn on launch.
Then us the users will get the generic response, "We didn't anticipate such demand for the game. We're working round the clock to fix this problem."

#23 compl3x


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Posted 26 December 2012 - 21:36

No, they really won't. They just won't fund another SimCity, if nobody is buying it.

And then find some way to blame the consumer.

#24 Knife Party

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Posted 26 December 2012 - 21:40

Bye Bye, I'm not getting scammed by EA, such a load of pure BS. Just die already please

#25 chaosinfected



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Posted 26 December 2012 - 22:05

And then find some way to blame the consumer.

This is all a huge assumption.

I'm assuming the game will sell millions and EA will continue doing what they do and people will continue hating them with barely any reason.

#26 Head of Tech Geek and More

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Posted 26 December 2012 - 22:22

OK here is the dictionary definition of what EA is doing, and this is because they know SimCity players still play all the old versions. They can't release a new version that will still be in use years later, how will they get more money from their next version.

Planned obsolescence or built-in obsolescence in industrial design is a policy of planning or designing a product with a limited useful life, so it will become obsolete, that is, unfashionable or no longer functional after a certain period of time. Planned obsolescence has potential benefits for a producer because to obtain continuing use of the product the consumer is under pressure to purchase again, whether from the same manufacturer (a replacement part or a newer model), or from a competitor which might also rely on planned obsolescence

Source of definition - Wikipedia

#27 +LogicalApex


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Posted 26 December 2012 - 22:24

This is all a huge assumption.

I'm assuming the game will sell millions and EA will continue doing what they do and people will continue hating them with barely any reason.

Hating EA for barely any reason? You've got to be kidding me here...

There isn't any serious reason for EA to be doing this to the Sim City franchise other than the desire to choke off the mod community and extract what they hope to be gobs of money out of us. If they have this thing running "in the cloud" all the time it will be impossible to patch (mod patch, not game updates) and it will become a lot easier to peddle gimmicks for it that would have previous come from the mod community.

Simple logic says that forcing a game like Sim City into the cloud is a bad idea unless you have some way of extracting incremental revenue out of users. A cluster of cloud servers don't come cheap and EA isn't a charity so I can't see them paying one red cent a month for me to have access to those servers unless in aggregate users are generating more than those operating costs on a monthly basis.

So I'm skipping this game because the online requirement is just dumb and, even more so, it confirms to me that my game would be sold to me incomplete and I'll be getting shaken down for money regularly.

Diablo got by this for Blizzard because they have that real money auction house gambit in the game. Allowing them to easily extract money out of the player base to power its servers...

But to say I have no reason to be angry at EA for this is ludicrous at best.

#28 Raa


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Posted 26 December 2012 - 22:27

My order has already been cancelled. EA, meet Ubisoft... :/

#29 chaosinfected



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Posted 26 December 2012 - 22:58

But to say I have no reason to be angry at EA for this is ludicrous at best.

I am assuming you realize I was not accounting for every single person in the universe when I said that.

#30 trag3dy


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Posted 26 December 2012 - 23:44

My sister who doesn't really know much at all about computers or gaming but has played the Sim City games for many years said she wouldn't buy it because it required an always online connection. Yeah, if my sister who doesn't even really know what DRM is can figure out why a game that requires an always online connection is bad it's surprising that the big wigs at EA can't (or rather, don't care).

Normally I'm not one to jump on the EA hate bandwagon but this time neither me or my sister will be buying this game. I had my fill of that with Blizzard and Diablo 3.