Maxis GM Lucy Bradshaw has addressed concerns over SimCity as issues continue, despite addition of game server

SimCity issues persist after UK launch; EA to compensate with free games

Despite initial reports of a smooth UK launch, SimCity players continue to face difficulties logging in and playing the game.

Following SimCity’s launch last week, players are flocking to the game’s forums and social media in order to vent their frustration over the game and their inability to play.

It summarises a trouble-laden launch for the title, which suffered multiple problems early last week as the game launched in the US. Servers struggled to cope with demand from players as a result of SimCity’s required always-connected internet connection – a feature initially heralded as a unique form of multiplayer gaming, which allowed the game to track players through global resource sharing.

However, players who pre-ordered the title in the hopes of playing the game upon its midnight launch were left disappointed as they faced hour long queue times to access the game’s single player mode.

In an attempt to avoid a repeat of the troubles across the Atlantic here in the UK, EA introduced an additional European game server, with the hopes of alleviating the pressure caused by excessive demand.

Whilst initial reports indicated a smooth UK launch, players were soon subjected to the same fate of US players, with wide scale reports of server crashes and the inability to access the game.

As issues continue to persist throughout the weekend, Maxis head Lucy Bradshaw took on the role of damage control, hosting a live chat with players via Twitter to address their concerns over the game.

The server issues which began at launch have improved significantly as we added more capacity,” she said in an official statement.

“But some people are still experiencing response and stability problems that we’re working fast to address.

“So what went wrong? The short answer is: a lot more people logged on than we expected. More people played and played in ways we never saw in the beta.

“OK, we agree, that was dumb, but we are committed to fixing it. In the last 48 hours we increased server capacity by 120 per cent. It’s working – the number of people who have gotten in and built cities has improved dramatically. The number of disrupted experiences has dropped by roughly 80 per cent.”

"So we’re close to fixed, but not quite there. I’m hoping to post another update this weekend to let everyone know that the launch issues are behind us.

Bradshaw also confirmed that EA would begin to compensate SimCity players with a free game following the issues.

"We’re going to offer you a free PC download game from the EA portfolio. On March 18, SimCity players who have activated their game will receive an email telling them how to redeem their free game."

Meanwhile, a further update from Bradshaw this morning said: "players have been able to connect to their cities in the game for nearly eight million hours of gameplay time" whilst going on further to highlight that game crashes have been reduced by "92 per cent from day one".

Despite all of the issues, Bradshaw maintains that SimCity has received a positive reception, and has ultimately been a success.

"The good news is that SimCity is a solid hit in all major markets. The consensus among critics and players is that this is fundamentally a great game."

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