Wednesday, February 03, 2010

I'll bet if we subpoenaed Maxis' warranty cards from 1989...

...we'd find one filled out by a certain young Harvard law student...

Seen in comments at pdb's:
"Buh-buh-but, SimCity taught us all that we don’t build public transportation, then the pixels get unhappy and start a riot or something. We also learned that if you put in the right cheat code, you get unlimited tax money!" -kbiel

10 comments:

reflectoscope said...

I believe the cheat code in question is D-N-C.

Jim

Dixie said...

Too bad he didn't zoom in, so he could see all the empty train cars and IRS agents breaking in doors.

LabRat said...

The irony is, I credit spending thousands of hours on everything Maxis put out from ages 12-18 on teaching me a firm object lesson in what a terrible idea giving top-down control to one asshole is.

Wildman7316 said...

What? That kind of person spend their own money? I think not, they are the kind of people who have all the good games. And every one pirated.

Borepatch said...

The Antiplanner (the go-to guy for public transportation folly) dissects the Administration's transport budget.

http://ti.org/antiplanner/?p=2582

You'll no doubt be shocked to find out that it's filled with pie n the sky. Shocked.

Borepatch said...

Wildman7316, you should check out FreeCiv:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freeciv

"From each according to his Game mods, to each according to his free time."

aczarnowski said...

Ah SimCity. Where I finally learned that indulging my early engineering idea of perfection - a totally flat landscape on 8x8 grids - wasn't. While certainly flawed, it's a game!, there was an amazing amount of good stuff on those floppy disks.

I had a similar flashback to my SimCity days when I read Blunt Object's recent piece on control economies.

Weer'd Beard said...

Heh, Got a chuckle out of me. First, I read it on the train. (Hey but the rail lines I rode today have been there for over 100 years...Dunno about the subway lines, but a good while them too)

Also I remember playing Sim City on my SNES and I'd have 1 mile of tracks with a single train bouncing back and forth over in one corner of the map, nowhere near any civilization, and that seemed to shut up the protesters.

I'm sure they fixed that bug in later versions, but I doubt they put the time into generating a system that checks to see if your mass transit system actually WORKS.

Outside of Dense Urban Areas that have actual jobs and industry, it doesn't. And even then it looses money by the bucket.

Doesn't help that goobers that run the train can have a cushy retirement by the time they're 40, and their overlords have nice six-figure incomes, and no accountability....

Jay G said...

Personally, I liked SimCity 2000 where you could have a giant mechanical spider destroy your city...

Brad K. said...

Atually, I think the SimCity emphasis on mass transit makes sense. The thing is, you build without any allowance for cars (unlike some SF speculation about banning private cars in New York City, except for bigwigs - that all lease limousines permanently).

First, you give up economies of scale, you lose control of food prices because there won't be any Wal-Mart or Sears or Lowes - no one lives close enough to make them pay. They need a county-wide customer base. Mom and Pop and neighborhood stores, particularly with the tax and regulation climate we have, would have to charge exorbitant prices to keep the rent paid.

If mass transit is such a good thing, how about putting in mule-drawn trolleys? Keep the scales involved in perspective, and the losses acceptable if you decide it was a bad idea.

I wonder what would happen if a few states started passing constitutional amendments banning subsidies for mass transit?