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SimCity - making urban eco systems and town planning educational

SimCity - a great game that teaches sharing and caring

SimCity was first released in 1989 by Maxis, a subsidiary of EA games. Since then many editions of SimCity have been released. SimCity is not just a game but actually a very realistic city-building simulator.

SimCity town plaza center centre

Like every other simulator game, the players start with a piece of land or they can choose pre-built cities. The player takes the role of mayor of the city. There are not really any objectives and players can play as long as they are able to manage their city.

The first and most important thing, just like in real life, is providing electricity. Players can build many different types of power plants each with its own properties for example the coal power plant produces highest amount of pollution, while the solar power plant, although producing lesser amount of electricity, produces no pollution at all.

Such decisions which the player has to undertake are known as Desirability Factors in SimCity. Desirability factors are the things that will affect the Sims in one way or another. For example the coal power plant made closer to residential zones will pollute the air and a mid to high level resident will not like to live in such an area.

There are 3 types of zones:

Each of the three zones has 3 further classes, low-level zones, mid-level zones, and high-level zones.

Low-level residential zones include single family houses. Mid-level residential zones comprise mostly of low to mid wealth apartments while high-level residential zones are based on luxury apartments and skyscrapers.

Commercial zones have same classifications ranging from small shops to international business centers. Industrial classification on the other hand is quite different. Low-level industrial zone only copes with agriculture sector; they cover up large areas of land with farms.

Mid-level industrial zone mostly attracts two types: the dirty industry (traditional heavy smokestack industry) and the manufacturing industry. While the high-level industrial zone comprises of high-tech industry.

You can also develop power plants, the water department and the sanitation department for your city. Power plants that can be established include the nuclear energy power plant, the solar energy power plant and a power plant called waste to energy power plant; this power plant incinerates the city's garbage and makes electricity out of it leaving lesser load on the sanitation department and lower amount of land-fill zones are needed.

The city services include a police station, a fire station, medical centers, schools and colleges. Police stations, fire stations and medical centers come in different capacities and there are also deluxe ones which come with helicopters.

For the educational sector you need to build primary schools, high schools, city college, university, library and the museum. Inter-region transport systems such as seaports and airports help the city's commercial industry get a boost.

See also:

Educational and construction toys index

LEGO digital designer 3D

LEGO educational toys

Online games as educational

Cooking games as learning

SimCity main site