Step Up, SimCity
Gamescom appears to have been the place to be over the past week, not counting ESL or surely some other gaming convention that's slipped my mind. Among other news coming out of Germany, Cities: Skyline, the sequel to the urban-planning simulator series Cities in Motion, Cities: Skyline, instead of having you manage transportation and logistics of a singular city, you're going to be doing everything. From starting the city off by developing and zoning land in order to encourage economic development to designing architectural marvels to keep your population happy, this is a city management game, on the impressively large scale that the Paradox publishing arm is typically known for.
What's more striking is that the trailer itself takes a rather expected but entirely necessary jab at SimCity, by saying that the game can be played entirely offline. Typically, that wouldn't be a feature, but after the launch fiasco and overwhelming disappointment that SimCity has brought, taking down a good number of its supporters with it, hilariously, game developers can now claim that their product can be played freely offline until the end of time.
The footage shown in the trailer is, as to be expected, just alpha footage, and there's no telling when or if a beta will appear. Hopefully, Colossal Order has learned from their mistakes in not making the game too dense (one of the criticisms of CiM 2), and will either offer an Early Access version, or include a comprehensive tutorial alongside it. In any case, it seems as though with some rather public and wholly expected failures from AAA developers within the past few years, smaller developers such as Colossal Order are taking it as their cue to shine.