ARS Technica – From SimCity to Real Girlfriend: 20 years of sim games

A huge 6 page article on the many simulation games that have been released over the past 20 years.  I’ve been a hardcore Maxis fan, passing by all of the other simulation games…after reading this article, I must say I’m going to explore the other fantastic games – Tropico 3, Cities XL 2011, Virtual City, and Space Colony all look like fun to play.

In researching this article, I came across two major stumbling blocks. First was the seemingly innocuous question, “What is a sim game?” Some critics take the narrow view that only vehicle sims can claim the label, while others think immediately of the Sim franchise (of which SimCity, SimAnt, and The Sims are perhaps most famous) developed primarily by Maxis and Will Wright.

Others take a holistic view, insisting that anything which accurately models or mimics real-life or real-life systems should be considered a sim game—but this is particularly subjective since it requires a definition of what, precisely, constitutes an “accurate” model and it rules out sims set in the future.

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