Most console games require your full attention, whether it’s a story-rich experience, trying to scavenge for resources in a survival-horror title or kill enemies in a shooter title. Sadly, there isn’t many city-building and management titles to choose from if you want that experience, and Cities Skylines has come to change that. Cities Skylines is mostly seen as a spiritual successor to Electronic Arts’ city-management simulator SimCity. The title is developed by Colossal Order and published by Paradox Interactive and is currently available on PS4, Xbox One and PC.
I always liked building my own city, arranging its landscape, building skyscrapers and watch pixelated people live their lives within my creation. It’s been a while since someone offered players a well-designed game with an incredible amount of customisation options, and Cities SKylines definitely has that. After getting into the game out of pure excitement to build my own little utopia, I found out Cities Skylines offers me too much to handle. The game doesn’t take your hand and guide you through the extensive list of options and features available at your disposal.
I spent quite a few hours on my first playthrough experimenting with everything Cities Skylines has to offer, and the possibilities were endless. I was able to set up drainage pipes, a completely functional sewer system, wire electricity to my entire city, provide them with necessary facilities and make sure my entire population is happy with my way of handling things. After getting the hang of things, I decided to start over. It was a completely different experience. Having learnt from my mistakes in my first session, mainly through trial-and-error, I was able to construct a fully functional and gorgeous city within an hour or two of playing.
Cities Skylines takes away the hassle of building houses for your citizens. Instead, you will find houses popping up randomly throughout your city and around facilities. It is a really satisfying feeling once you successfully provide electricity to your entire city, setting up a drainage system without the sewers overlapping and building trainstations across the city. However, all of this must be done within your budget and after completing certain milestones. Milestones are mostly population-related and grant you access to new buildings and facilities. Colossal Order kept in mind those who just want a chilling experience, and offers players the option to have unlimited money and/or access to everything locked by milestones. Enabling either one of them takes away your ability to unlock any of the game’s trophies.
Cities Skylines is definitely one of the most satisfying and enjoyable city-building and management video games currently available, especially on consoles as its library of city-building games is rather thin. It offers players complete control over their cities with its detailed infrastructure and management system. However, this level of control is reached after several attempts due to the lack of a decent tutorial to guide the player through the extensive list of features. Watching your city turn from a few houses in an empty green landscape to a hustling-and-bustling city with skyscrapers reaching the clouds is the most enjoyable feeling ever and Cities Skylines offers it in the best way possible.