When reigning two-time Worst Company In America champ Electronic Arts released the hugely anticipated SimCity game in April 2013, it unleashed a hornets’ nest of bad publicity by not only requiring that players be online in order to use the game but also grossly underestimating its ability to deal with all of those users trying to play the game at the same time. Many owners of the game were unable to play for weeks until EA resolved the issue, but the company stood by the ill-advised decision to require an Internet connection. Now, ten months and ten updates later, it’s finally relenting.
In a post on the SimCity blog, the company confirmed that the next update to the game will finally allow players to enjoy the game without going online.
“When we launch it, all of your previously downloaded content will be available to you anytime, anywhere, without the need for an internet connection,” reads the blog post. “We are in the late phases of wrapping up its development and while we want to get it into your hands as soon as possible, our priority is to make sure that it’s as polished as possible before we release it.”
No specific timeframe is given for the release of the update. A group of volunteer testers will be getting hands-on with the new offline mode to make sure it works correctly. Because the worst thing EA could do at this point is to release an offline mode that doesn’t work correctly.
In the middle of the initial SimCity firestorm, an exec at the studio that produced the game said that the idea of offline play was rejected “because it didn’t fit with our vision.” Apparently that vision has been corrected.