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EA Shuts down SimCity Social.... less than 1 year after it launched.

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Now you might recall at E3 last year, SimCity Social was announced. The game was to effectively be a facebook version of Sim City in which you and your friends could invest time and money into building or destroying one anothers city.
 
Here is the original announcement. Remember, this was at E3 2012, so June 4th wasn't it?
 

This game has over 1 million players (according to the facebook stats), it also has a microtransaction system, some users have spent a lot in this game.
 
It's less than a year old... and today EA announced it's shutting it down. June 14th marks the end of the game. About 1 week after they first announced it!
 
Well what about all those who invested money and time into their cities? Will they be transfered into Sim City 5 or some kind of rebate?
 
Oh my no.
 
Thats it. Once the game ends, all that time and money is lost, no refunds. EA has effectively opened a giant black hole in which people threw their money and time in and have now decided to close it. All the money and time has been lost.
 
On the official F&Q regarding the announcement... if you have money on the game, this is your advice.
 

What if I have an existing balance of Diamonds in SimCity Social on Facebook?

Players are encouraged to spend their remaining balance of Diamonds in SimCity Social before the game is retired on June 14th. As of that date, any remaining Diamonds left in the game will be invalid.

 
Wow thats incredibly crappy! Did I mention this is a facebook game with a popularity of over 1 million and it's less than a year old?
 
 
Meanwhile... Peter moore recently said this...
 
 

Are we really the “Worst Company in America?” I’ll be the first to admit that we’ve made plenty of mistakes. These include server shut downs too early, games that didn’t meet expectations, missteps on new pricing models and most recently, severely fumbling the launch of SimCity. We owe gamers better performance than this.

 

I guess they're going for the triple with that worst company award eh?

 

Source: EA forums.

 

Obama-Deal-With-It.jpg

Because we're all thinking it.

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Holy shit wow, is this going to piss even more people off who spent money or will most pay no notice to it?

 

This is another problem with games that rely on online, a dev can take a server down and the thing becomes useless. Also lol at that E3 video, none of those SimCity products turned out how they were supposed to.

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Now stepping away from the obvious issue of EA pulling yet another dick move, what's making them close the game down so soon? Is it not bringing in enough money or something? I'm quite surprised that a big company like EA is putting an end to a simple, seemingly cash-cow game with a million players.

 

EDIT: Hmm actually, from the looks of it it's not been performing too well recently. But still. I'm surprised.

Edited by Blue Blood

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To be honest, with all the bad publicity with ignorant parents allowing their kids to go rampant with micro-transaction games, and the fact that Zynga and some other companies have pulled back with the vast amount of Social Media game available. I'm wholly not surprised.

 

Let's be fair, SC Social was only meant to be filler before SC5 came out, and now that it's on a solid footing, they're pulling out of the social media game.

 

Who's to say that it's no longer financially viable anymore and that's the reason they are closing it?

 

SC Social was just a giant timesink which, like other FB games, pissed a lot of your friends off with sending invites out. I personally used the game until a little bit before SC5 came out, and while it was fun, it just ended up being monotonous and trivial. Granted, I never spent money on it, if you played it properly, you never needed to, you just had a leg up on the game itself, which is how micro-transactions should work.

 

I think way too many people are throwing their arms up in the air over something so trivial. I don't remember seeing loads of people getting so annoyed after they buy a game and can't access online features after a while because the servers are taken offline...

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I think way too many people are throwing their arms up in the air over something so trivial. I don't remember seeing loads of people getting so annoyed after they buy a game and can't access online features after a while because the servers are taken offline...

 

The difference with this game, and eventually with the new Sim City and any other always online games, is that once the servers go down they will be impossible to play in any form. People pay money for these services, and very often extras by way of microtransactions. It amounts to a lot before one day that money is gone with nothing to show for it.

 

O)ther games have their online services go down after so long. This is the entire game gone.

Edited by Blue Blood

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Guys...GUYS. I SPENT $30 ON SIMS SOCIAL. NOT KIDDING. AND I STILL GO ON IT.

 

When I opened up my Facebook News Feed and saw the announcement (5 minutes ago) my heart sank. 

 

 

I hated Origin and I said I would never buy an EA game unless they get rid of it, but this is a whole new level. I will swear now, I will never buy an EA game again after this. Even if it's Burnout. I never felt so robbed after this. That's it! My $30, DOWN THE ****ING DRAIN.

 

I'll tell my friends to not buy anything EA. So mad right now.

Edited by Ming Ming Shana

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The difference with this game, and eventually with the new Sim City and any other always online games, is that once the servers go down they will be impossible to play in any form. People pay money for these services, and very often extras by way of microtransactions. It amounts to a lot before one day that money is gone with nothing to show for it.

 

O)ther games have their online services go down after so long. This is the entire game gone.

My point is that this isn't the first of the Social games to have gone. To the best of my memory, Zynga didn't refund anything when they shut their services down. So, why is a public outcry needed now that a different company has done the same thing?

 

And I'm not just talking about PC based games either, similar console games have had their servers/services shut down after people spend hard earned money on the game/service, and yet this simple thing of a game being shut down is recieving a public outcry and people flipping tables and various other instruments of choice.

 

It's unnecessary needling and people just jumping on the bandwagon of EA's recent poll of being a "bad company". Please, there were several more people on that so called list who should of been higher, but this is the internet, eh? A podium for every anonymous voice.

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I'll never get not buying great games because the company who made it did some bad things. Unless the company is literally robbing me of my money, there's no point in avoiding a fun game just because of the logo(s) on the box.

Anyways, this is pretty terrible. I really don't even get the point behind taking down this game. Surely these servers aren't as expensive to keep up as games that have had them running for years?

Edited by Red Cap-Blue Spikes

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My point is that this isn't the first of the Social games to have gone. To the best of my memory, Zynga didn't refund anything when they shut their services down. So, why is a public outcry needed now that a different company has done the same thing?

 

And I'm not just talking about PC based games either, similar console games have had their servers/services shut down after people spend hard earned money on the game/service, and yet this simple thing of a game being shut down is recieving a public outcry and people flipping tables and various other instruments of choice.

 

It's unnecessary needling and people just jumping on the bandwagon of EA's recent poll of being a "bad company". Please, there were several more people on that so called list who should of been higher, but this is the internet, eh? A podium for every anonymous voice.

Are you honestly defending everything EA's done lately? This is just the tip of the iceberg, they bad, that much is an undeniable fact regardless of whether or not you think they're the ~worst company ever~.

 

I'm pretty sure Zynga games had many unhappy users, that company doesn't exactly have a good reputation either y'know. Again, the difference here is that EA is a longterm industry member as well as a huge name and they seriously can't get away with mistreating their customers to the extent that they have been lately. This game hasn't even run anywhere near its projected course.

 

Plus, most console games that have online services shut down are

  1. primarily offline games to begin with
  2. not something people have paid money for

Microtransactions are a relatively new thing in the games industry, the only games that really have online modes shut down are games from 6th gen systems, and more often than not, you didn't have to tons of stuff or you could still use the stuff you bought in offline modes anyway.

 

This game is completely nothing once it's shut down, there is no offline mode, all your money is completely vanished into air.

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It's unnecessary needling and people just jumping on the bandwagon of EA's recent poll of being a "bad company". Please, there were several more people on that so called list who should of been higher, but this is the internet, eh? A podium for every anonymous voice.

 

But we're talking about a game which is less than a year old with millions of players based off a very popular larger series. Not to mention it wasn't just a stop gap or some kind of 'it's being funded by the funds created from Sim City' it had it's own microtransaction system and from every promotion they did, it sounded like it was it's own entity.

 

Dead after less than a year with barely 1 month notice? EA does have a lot of blame here.

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I'll never get not buying great games because the company who made it did some bad things.

 

lol "some bad things". Thousands of people were robbed from this game, including me. Oh, but let's not forget the past and current stuff that EA has done, The SimCity 5 launch, Mass Effect 3, Origin, banning Origin users from playing their own bought games including single player modes, adding microtransactions, poor customer support, turning off servers after launching other games a year or so later, bad PR, plagiarising work...

 

---I'm sorry I lost count.

Edited by Ming Ming Shana

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Sorry to be "that guy", but I don't really care that they shut it down. I never played it, and it sounded stupid anyway (anything with "Social" in the title makes me wary). If anything, I'm glad it's gone. You see, it was a black hole for money anyway, regardless of whether it stayed around or not. This is for two reasons; firstly these games go like this: You discover the game, pour money into it for ultimately meaningless virtual currency or items, you make something "cool" with the stuff you bought and then, as with most games, you eventually get bored of it and all the money you spent becomes irrelevant. I'm sure there are people that spent money on this game and don't play it anymore, and they wouldn't even notice that it's gone.

 

The second reason is that because it's an online service (nothing is stored on your computer), the continuity of the game or any associated data (like your premium currency or cities) is at the whims of whoever owns and hosts the service (in this case, EA). Therefore, they can and will end it eventually and since the data doesn't belong to you (it's not on your computer), you have no control over when this happens. Contrast this with Simcity 4 (or any other single-player game), where the data can sit around for years, decades, however long you want until it is accidentally (or intentionally) destroyed by you.

 

So yeah, I guess it sucks for the people that spent money on it. But it was bound to happen eventually and even if it didn't, after you got bored and forgot all about the game you would still have wasted money on something that may as well not exist anymore. It's partly the customer's fault for spending money on something so transient in the first place. But now EA won't be sucking any more money out of impulsive people with this game.

Edited by Frogging101

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When I said "some bad things" I did not mean "3 or 4 bad things". I really don't care WHAT EA does as long as they aren't doing something actually morally corrupt. No one at EA forced you guys to splash some cash on this game and yes, it sucks complete ass that your money is essentially getting vaporized, but that's not gonna stop me from buying a fun game that just so happens to have EA's logo on the box. $60 isn't going to make or brake the bank for them, and they're going to make millions wether I like it or not so what's the point?

And am I the only one that finds microtransactions harmless?

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But we're talking about a game which is less than a year old with millions of players based off a very popular larger series. Not to mention it wasn't just a stop gap or some kind of 'it's being funded by the funds created from Sim City' it had it's own microtransaction system and from every promotion they did, it sounded like it was it's own entity.

 

Dead after less than a year with barely 1 month notice? EA does have a lot of blame here.

 

My calendar says two months if it closes June 14th ;)

 

I'm not saying it IS a stopgap and I'm definetely not saying it funded, I'm saying it felt like a stopgap it to me. It jumped into the Social gaming craze and made money from it.

 

Social gaming is one of those games that come and go. If it was a mobile game, would it still exist? Probably, but that's not the topic at hand. Unless we have actual monetary figures of how much this game was making, for all we know it could of been a profit or a loss.

 

Remember that while it was using the SimCity name, it wasn't even run by Maxis. Just some subsidiary of EA for social gaming.

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By the way, it's not just SimCity Social, but also any PlayFish game, like that pet simulator thing that lasted, oh, 4 YEARS!

 

I know, The Sims Social is one of them, the one I spent money in.

 

You learn from these things. It's too bad I spent money in 2011-12 on this game when I was at the time "so-so with EA". Well I'm not buying an EA game again. Especially ones with any sort of multiplayer/online. I haven't bought anything EA anyway since The Sims Social.

 

And why? When I bought an item in The Sims Social during Spring 2012, it didn't work like it suppose to. EA didn't fix it, instead removed the item from the store and changed it to some sort of useless decoration piece for the ones who already bought it. That's when I stopped giving that game my money, and that's when I was beginning to open my eyes on EA. 

 

The Sims Social experience showed me what EA are really like. So I have to thank them. They saved me money from buying anything from them. You just learn from these things.

 

I don't care what type of EA game it is. If it's a Burnout game, I'll buy it used. Until I get my $30 back (which I know, won't), I will not buy anything from them full price and new.

 

Also that time building my house, my summer house and my apartment, farming simoleons...gone. Erased. I know, I know. I should blame myself for that. I am. Can't believe I was a fool. So they can't now fool me again on anything.

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Sorry to be "that guy", but I don't really care that they shut it down. I never played it, and it sounded stupid anyway (anything with "Social" in the title makes me wary). If anything, I'm glad it's gone. You see, it was a black hole for money anyway, regardless of whether it stayed around or not. This is for two reasons; firstly these games go like this: You discover the game, pour money into it for ultimately meaningless virtual currency or items, you make something "cool" with the stuff you bought and then, as with most games, you eventually get bored of it and all the money you spent becomes irrelevant. I'm sure there are people that spent money on this game and don't play it anymore, and they wouldn't even notice that it's gone.

 

The second reason is that because it's an online service (nothing is stored on your computer), the continuity of the game or any associated data (like your premium currency or cities) is at the whims of whoever owns and hosts the service (in this case, EA). Therefore, they can and will end it eventually and since the data doesn't belong to you (it's not on your computer), you have no control over when this happens. Contrast this with Simcity 4 (or any other single-player game), where the data can sit around for years, decades, however long you want until it is accidentally (or intentionally) destroyed by you.

 

So yeah, I guess it sucks for the people that spent money on it. But it was bound to happen eventually and even if it didn't, after you got bored and forgot all about the game you would still have wasted money on something that may as well not exist anymore. It's partly the customer's fault for spending money on something so transient in the first place. But now EA won't be sucking any more money out of impulsive people with this game.

 

I don't think anyone is pissed that it eventually would have shut down anyway, just the fact that it is within a YEAR of starting, the userbase is still pretty damn active, and EA could easily give some kind of reimbursement system for recently purchased content at least, as a gesture of good faith.  Like if you spent money on it in 2013 they'll give you some vouchers for games on origin or something equally shit-but-at-least-they're-trying-to-be-nice-ish.

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