SimCity 4 Trailer
Made by Maxis to advertise their new game: SimCity 4. Probably one of the coolest trailers by Maxis ever made.
Become the mayor of your own city with Electronic Arts’ SimCity 4. Begin with the game’s terraforming tool to establish the land your city will be built on: make the landscape replete with rolling hills or situate your city in a flattened prairie landscape. Your community will start small, but if you’re good at your job as mayor, it will quickly grow into a bustling metropolis. Trade with neighbouring cities in SimNation to improve your city’s economy while engaging in larger scale regional planning, establishing a flourishing virtual community. Of course, you don’t have to be so benevolent: SimCity 4 allows you to inflict a variety of natural—and unnatural—disasters on your cities, such as huge fires, robotic attacks or alien invasions. What kind of leader will you prove yourself to be?
Made by Maxis to advertise their new game: SimCity 4. Probably one of the coolest trailers by Maxis ever made.
Check out another trailer for Sim City 4, another gem in the award winning franchise.
A trailer for the game SimCity 4
SimCity holds a special place in my heart. After short stints in the Computer Science, Physics, Psychology, Communications and Math departments, I was finally forced by "The Man" to select a permanent major in my fifth year of college -- also known as the sophsenjunmore year.
Being your average slacker, I learned early on to never schedule a class before 11am. I was too busy staying up late playing Civilization, Master of Magic and SimCity 2000 to bother with anything earlier. It just so happens that I was going through a big SimCity 2000 phase when I was locked into making this heavy life decision. A note to all of you students out there, whatever you pick in college is what you're forced to do for the rest of your life, so choose wisely because you're stuck with it; there is no getting out, even for those of you who thought Human Sexuality would be a great way to meet girls.
So there I was, thumbing through the class booklet, when I came across a major that sounded kind of interesting: Geography. Urban Planning to be specific...none of that state capitals crap for me. And what's this? No classes before 11am and I can work my schedule so I only have to take Tuesday and Thursday classes?!? This is the dream major!
It was set. The next day I signed up to be a future urban planner, following in the steps of such world-renowned names as Bob Smith, Bobby Smith and Robert Smith (no, not the lead singer of The Cure), all because I had an extreme fascination with a videogame and I liked to sleep in.
I learned about all manner of things, from journey-to-work models to NIMBY to concentric ring theory. I even pursued a Geography Masters at the University of Georgia after that, and planned on writing my thesis on how SimCity 3000 portrayed real-life Urban Planning issues and theories. You see, in the early days of development, Maxis was looking to get down to the individual level with SimCity 3000, so you could actually roam the streets and poll your individual citizenry to see what they liked and didn't like about urban life. This is the stuff Urban Planning thesis papers are made of. It was a colossal project, and unfortunately, SimCity 3000 was delayed for years because of it, and it never really emerged as the robust and personal-level city simulation the development team had originally set out to build.
Yes, they're actually playing soccer.
I know what you're thinking. "That's all fine and good, Tal. Thanks for the boring life story. So what in the hell does all of this have to do with SimCity 4?" Well, while that grand vision that Will Wright and the boys had for SimCity 3000 never saw the light of day, it has been rekindled in a sense with SimCity 4. Of all the games in the SimCity franchise, this one comes the closest to modeling real city morphology dynamics, and is a true evolutionary step to the series as it adds entirely new elements and simulates urban planning on a grand scale never before seen in a SimCity title.
Breaking away from the single-city model, SimCity 4 focuses on planning at the regional level. Each of the regions in the game -- which include Berlin, the San Francisco Bay area, New York, London and a few others -- are comprised of a few dozen squares where you can build the metropolis of your dreams. If you build in a square adjacent to an existing city, you can strike up trade deals with your neighbor where you can import and/or export power, trash and water. While you could generate similar deals in SimCity 3000, now you can actually go to the neighboring city and control them hands-on, so you may build an agrarian-based smaller city with a large landfill so you can ship all of that dirty trash out of your city to the country and let the farmers deal with it. This regional planning really adds a lot more depth to the series than in previous games, and lets you switch from town to town customizing each so you don't get as bored only working on a single city for 40 hours at a stretch.
During gameplay, hit CTRL+X, then enter one of the codes below to trigger the corresponding function:
SimCity 4 (PC) Full Strategy Guide Document written by PyroFalkon (firstname.lastname@example.org) Latest Update: 1 November 2003 Current version: 1.2a +---------------+ |+-------------+| ||LATEST UPDATE|| |+-------------+| +---------------+ v1.2a (1 November 2003) It's been nearly a year, but unfortunately my site is down for the count. Luckily, has decided to host my FAQs too, so it's all good. A new copyright notice is the only change. +-------------------+ |+-----------------+| ||TABLE OF CONTENTS|| |+-----------------+| +-------------------+ PART 1: INTRO ============= 1. Intro 2. Changes from SimCity 3000 3. Claiming Your Land PART 2: MAYOR MODE BASICS ========================= 4. What Do These Buttons Do? a. Landscaping b. Zones c. Transportation d. Utilities e. Civic Buildings f. Bulldozer g. Dispatch h. Everything Else 5. Getting Started a. Infrastructure b. Recon c. Expanding 6. Small Towns 7. Medium Cities 8. Metropolises and Beyond 9. The Peanut Butter Point a. What To Do About It b. An Alternate Method 10. My Sim Mode PART 3: REFERENCE ================ 11. Power Plants 12. Ordinances PART 4: STRATEGY ================ 13. Zones a. Residential Zones b. Commercial Zones c. Industrial Zones d. General Zoning Advice 14. Education 15. Transportation a. Streets and Roads b. Highways c. Mass Transit d. Bridges and Tunnels e. Seaports and Airports 16. You Are Not Alone 17. Reader Strategies PART 5: GOD MODE ================ 18. God Mode Tools a. Landscaping b. Winds and Global Changes c. Reconcile Edges d. Disasters e. Day/Night Cycle 19. God Mode Strategies and Effects PART 6: FAQ STUFF ================= 20. Contributors 21. Version History 22. Copyright Info 23. Contact Info ====================================================== | PART 1: INTRO | ====================================================== This part of the FAQ introduces itself, along with a few of the changes to the SimCity universe. +----------+ |+--------+| ||1. INTRO|| |+--------+| +----------+ Welcome one and all to my FAQ on Maxis's latest and greatest city building sim, SimCity 4! You've come to this FAQ because you want info and/or strategies. Maybe you want to submit your own, which I hastily accept! For those of you familiar to my FAQs, you'll know that that's exactly what I provide. I won't go into history lessons on the franchise or company. I won't repeat the manual. I won't tell you how to click the mouse. What I will do is provide thorough, tested, reliable information. I will provide humor here and there so this isn't a boring read. I will do my hardest to please not only you on an informational standpoint, but an entertainment standpoint. As my motto says, games are supposed to be fun, so why should the FAQ be as well? This first part, the intro, will be short. Although I do like providing humor, I agree that too much fluff makes people irritated at the author. I strive to strike the balance; feel free to write me and report on how well I did. Finally, if you have ANYTHING to contribute or correct, please e-mail me. Even if I misspelled the word "the" as "teh" in my 158th paragraph, feel free to write me. I won't be offended, as long as you're civil. All right, let's get this sim party started! +------------------------------+ |+----------------------------+| ||2. CHANGES FROM SIMCITY 3000|| |+----------------------------+| +------------------------------+ SimCity vets need to take a look at this. I stress NEED. There's a lot of stuff that's been changed, and the more info you have going into situations, the better. SimCity rookies can just ignore this section entirely. By the way, I'm ignoring the simple stuff like graphics and audio and other ambient effects that always go with sequels. +-------------------+ |Change 1: Neighbors| +-------------------+ I believe that the biggest change of all is the difference in the way neighboring cities are handled. No longer do you start your city with four surrounding cities. This time, YOU HAVE TO BUILD THEM ALL. This has major impact in strategy. No longer can you rely on a quick influx of cash by building a huge landfill and getting garbage from neighbors. You'd have to start one city, save it, exit to the main screen, start a new city on one of the original's borders, and go from there. +----------------+ |Change 2: Budget| +----------------+ Your budget is now calculated MONTHLY, not yearly. That seriously changes a bunch of strategies. I used to splurge and wipe my bank clean in the first year, letting the sudden influx of people and such get me a large income for the next year. That's no longer possible. This also helps speed the game up. You won't be waiting for 10 or more minutes for a year change just so you get enough scratch to build a darned bus stop. +------------------------+ |Change 3: Neighbor Deals| +------------------------+ You can now initiate a neighbor deal. It's less ceremonial than it used to be; it's now a simple option from the budget screen. More on that later. +--------------------+ |Change 4: Tile Radii| +--------------------+ In SimCity 3000, zones would grow if they were within three tiles of a road. Now, residential and commercial sections have to be directly next to roads. Industrial zones, on the other hand, can be up to EIGHT tiles away from a road and still develop, provided that SOME part of the industrial zone is directly touching a road. That is, you can build one section of road, then make a 1x8 section of industrial zone, and have it all grow. +-------------------------+ |Change 5: Resident Wealth| +-------------------------+ It used to be that the denser the building for any zone, the more you got out of that building in terms of population and taxes. Not so anymore. A large building could house several hundred people, but they all work dead-end low jobs. People and businesses are now classified into four categories: poor, middle-class, and wealthy. Generally speaking, the most wealthy buildings will house the most people or jobs, but that's not a set-in-stone rule. +---------------+ |Change 6: Taxes| +---------------+ You now have much greater control of taxes, especially since the new class system has been implemented. You can now independently set taxes for poor residents, middle-class residents, and wealthy residents; poor businesses, middle-class businesses, and wealthy businesses; and poor industries, middle-class industries, and wealthy industries. In addition, taxes can now be set to the tenth of a percent. This lets you fine-tune taxes and give much subtler changes in the economy. +-----------------------+ |Change 7: Shared Demand| +-----------------------+ Another big change is the fact that adjacent cities share the RCI meter demand. If a city is a bustling metropolis, there may be high farm demand. You can make a neighboring city nothing but a farm town, then connect the two via a highway or road. The big city's people will be happy with the number of farms, and the little town will be happy with the bigger city attractions. +-------------------------------+ |Change 8: Additional Structures| +-------------------------------+ New power plants and other city structures became available only after so much time had passed. That's been done away with in favor of a prerequisite system. For example, a new town is not going to be able to build a nuclear power plant. Almost all of the new structures have their requirements shown, but I'll list them in the FAQ anyway so you have the info at your fingertips. +--------------------+ |Change 9: Hyperlinks| +--------------------+ Your advising staff is still around, but now they're way more helpful. They'll report on individual buildings that are causing problems, and in their report will be Internet-esque hyperlinks. For example, I commonly build too many bus stations, and often my transportation advisor will say, "This bus stop is just not making a profit," with the word "This" linked. Clicking "This" centers the screen directly on the offending building, where I can take action to do something with it. +------------------------+ |Change 10: Local Funding| +------------------------+ You are no longer forced to change the funding of all the buildings of one type. If one school is in a remote part of town, you can individually adjust its funding to accommodate its reduced enrollment. +---------------------+ |Change 11: Game Start| +---------------------+ All cities start with $100,000 on the year 2000. You do not select your city size the same way either, but more on that later as well. There are many more changes to SimCity 4, but none are as important, in my opinion. I'll get to the specifics as needed. +-----------------------+ |+---------------------+| ||3. CLAIMING YOUR LAND|| |+---------------------+| +-----------------------+ Hail, O young mayor! I see that you have that look in your eyes... you want to construct a fantastic city, one that is the envy of all the world! Of course, whether you want to build in order to mother it or destroy it is up to you. But either way, all cities start the same way: grabbing a hunk of earth. The game has no formal title screen. Instead, you're thrown to the region screen. This is SimNation, a big huge plot of land that represents not one city, but a county, or state, or country, whatever you want it to be. See all those gray borders? Every single box is one place where a city can go. Yeah, regions are that big. You could spend your entire SimCity career without touching the land, and that's fine. I was itching to get in the driver's seat and start building skyscrapers, so I ignored God Mode and such entirely for awhile. Assuming you think like that, I'm touching on Mayor Mode first. That's where you'll be spending most of your time anyway. In the very top-left corner is a compass. Notice that north is to your upper-right, but it's not at a perfect 45-degree angle. This gives you a rather unique view, one you may curse at until you get used to it. There are four buttons at the top. The one on the left is the Region View options. Here you can turn the grid lines on and off, as well as show or not show the city names. You can also create a new region from here, load an existing one, or nuke your present one off your hard drive. The second button is only useful if you're on the Net at the same time. It's a shortcut to connect you to the official SimCity website, or to a site where you can exchange regions and cities. The third button is your quit button. You're not ready to finish already, are you? The fourth button is your options button, where you set the more mundane things like graphics details and audio volume, along with a few game assists. In the bottom-left corner is the name of the region that's loaded, along with its mass population. All right, now that you've got all that down, it's time to get your grass. I personally recommend that you make a new region (set it to grass), so you have a clean slate to work with. Your first town (and any other experimental towns or testing towns) you make should be on paper-flat land with no water. That gives you the most room to work and gives your sims far fewer problems from the outset. Also, by making a region and giving it your own name, it customizes and personalizes your playing experience. I'm big on stuff like that. Once you have a new region or choose to stick with what's loaded, take a look at the borders. Notice all the different sizes you can choose. Like a lot of spam e-mail makes you believe, size does matter. However, unlike that same spam e-mail states, bigger is not always better. A huge plot of land can get eaten up pretty quickly, and it's quite easy to get carried away in this game. The smallest plots don't provide much room, especially to learn the game, so go with the second-smallest plot for now. Once you click a plot, you're given a few options. If you had clicked an existing town, it would give a population, service, and job count, along with the town name and city funds. You can also remove it permanently from memory. For a new town, you have the option of importing a town you downloaded, or just starting from scratch. Obviously, we're starting from scratch here, so hit that play button. ====================================================== | PART 2: MAYOR MODE BASICS | ====================================================== I debated with myself about whether to start out talking about God Mode or Mayor Mode first. I decided that if you're here, you MIGHT want help with God Mode, but you WILL want help on Mayor Mode. Considering that you could ignore God Mode entirely and be all right, it made my decision easier. I write the rest of this document with the SimCity rookie in mind. If you're a SimCity 3000 vet, you could skip a bunch of this, but it really would be best to read it, or at least skim it. I'm a SimCity 3000 vet myself, and I sure could have used this info back when I started. +------------------------------+ |+----------------------------+| ||4. WHAT DO THESE BUTTONS DO?|| |+----------------------------+| +------------------------------+ As I said before, I debated with myself and decided to pretend that God Mode doesn't exist for now. Initially, once you claim land, you can alter it to any way you see fit. For now, though, just click the second button in the big three, the one with the top hat and rolled-up paper. It will prompt you for a city name and mayor name, along with a warning that you can't alter the land anymore beyond small (and expensive) changes. That's fine for now. Fill out the required info, then hit OK. Just to note, your Mayor Name will stick. Any city you make in the same region hereafter will have the same Mayor name as a default. It's still changeable, of course. Okay, you're in the game now. Fireworks light the sky, marking the debut of your term in office! Where to start, where to start? On the left side of the screen are the mayor's tools. These five huge and two tiny buttons together mark everything you can build and zone. I'll go over them in detail, but I will not give details to the individual buildings... that comes in a later section. I won't go over the finer points of things... this is just button and tool explanations. We'll get into the strategies soon. +---------------+ |4a. Landscaping| +---------------+ The first big button of the group of five is the landscaping tool. Though you have left God Mode, you can still raise and lower the land as you see fit. However, it's pretty expensive, and completely unnecessary for your first town. Something that does have value though is the tree planter. Throw down a few trees here and there to suck up pollution and generally make your city a prettier place to live. Of course, that too costs money, so don't go nuts. +---------+ |4b. Zones| +---------+ The bread and butter of the city, zones are areas that you designate to contain certain buildings. The zones are divided into three major categories: residential, commercial, and industrial. Residential zones are where homes are, where your happy little sims eat, sleep, and poop on a daily basis. Commercial zones are places of business or office space. Industrial zones are where things are made or manufactured. Zones are further divided by densities. Generally speaking, the higher the density, the wealthier the citizens or businesses that move in, which attract more taxes. However, that's not a hard and fast rule, and you'll kill yourself if you try building high-density things from the outset. Besides, you can always re-zone later without destroying existing buildings. Light residential zones are places for tiny homes, such as trailer parks or shabby apartment buildings. The taxes you generate from here are smaller than other places, but the sims will be pretty undemanding, so you can stick them in high-crime areas without losing too much business. Medium residential zones are where most of you probably live, in middle-class homes. These typically have nice gardens and other accommodations, although you pay for it by having to provide schools and other essential services. The high-density residential zones hold buildings that kiss the sky, whether that means they're skyscraping hotels, or mansions that people like Bill Gates live in. Light commercial zones are for local businesses. These include things like local donut shops, auto stores, ice cream parlors, fast food joints, and the like. Medium commercial zones contain small corporate shops, such as Wal-Mart, K-Mart, Radio Shack, or Best Buy. They also house small office buildings. Dense commercial zones hold malls and offices that touch the clouds. Industrial zones are a little different. The first zone type is agricultural zones. Unlike the other industrial zones, this can be as big as you want it to be. Agricultural zones are nothing but farms that employ few people. They give off no pollution, but they also pay NO TAXES. Do not build farms if you're looking for money. Medium-density industrial zones are mostly dirty industries. There are horribly polluting industries like resource gatherers, toxic waste dumps, and other nasty places. They pay a bit in taxes, but you'll be spending a lot of that money on ways to combat the crime and pollution that come with it. Manufacturing industries, like car shops, exist in some medium-density zones as well. These pollute, but not nearly as bad, and they pay more. The most dense zones accommodate high-tech industries. These don't pollute but do produce vast amounts of money for your coffers. Maxis, EA, Microsoft, and such would be in high-tech zones. +------------------+ |4c. Transportation| +------------------+ People hate walking, and so do sims. We're in the year 2001 and beyond for SimCity 4, so gone are the days of dirt roads and horses. Instead, we've got cars and subways! The top button of the transportation tier is asphalt options. You can build roads, bus stops, and--new to the SimCity series--streets. Roads are your basic to-and-from route. These are two-lane roads and can handle a fair amount of traffic. Streets are a much weaker version of roads, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. The pavement just outside your house is probably a street, one that cars don't travel on too much. There may not even be a line painted down the center of it. Streets are good to get isolated neighborhoods to the main streets. However, the speed limit is less here, along with its capacity, so don't use streets to link major places. Don't be afraid to make streets, however; you can always upgrade them to roads later by painting over them with the road tool. Bus stops are where your sims BOARD busses to go to other parts of towns. Notice I said BOARD... your sims can get off busses anywhere they darn well please. You do NOT need to put a bus stop at a destination. Buses cut down traffic, so unless you put them along busy roads and intersections, they won't do too much. The second button of the transportation tier allows the construction of highways. These beefy boys are six-lane elevated roads designed to get sims from point A to point B with optimal speed and minimal stops. You need to connect highways to roads, and to do that requires one of the two available on-ramps. Highways can also be linked to each other via a cloverleaf. Highways need their own section, and it's much later in the document. The third button lets you ride the rails. You can place down double-wide tracks, but trains won't run without train stations. Stations, it goes without saying, must be directly next to tracks to work. Unlike bus stops, you have to build train stations everywhere you want the train to stop, so you'll have to do some planning to get it to work. You can also build freight train stations, which carry goods to and from the city, but that's an advanced strategy that we don't need to deal with at the moment. The fourth button allows you to build subways. These as you may know are passenger-only trains. They're underground, so they won't take up valuable land. They are quite expensive however, especially considering that you need a stop at every place you want the sims to go. Small cities don't even need to consider them. The fifth button allows you to build an airport. Airports bring massive demand to your city because of the tourists and/or businessmen aboard. Again, it's not necessary to worry about it for a small city. Airports are a fixed size, unlike they were in SimCity 3000. The sixth and last button lets you build a seaport. Again, seaports help commercial and industrial demands. They need water to work, so if you took my advice and started a new region without water, you won't be using them for now. Like airports, they're a fixed size, and they're pretty darn expensive. +-------------+ |4d. Utilities| +-------------+ This ain't the stone age. People want TVs and computers, and they need some place to power those computers. The first button lets you build a large variety of power plants, along with power lines to link the plant to your zones. Most of the power plants are grayed out for now because they have prerequisites that go with them, and obviously as a young city you don't have much going for you. Explanations of the plants come later. The second button lets you build water structures. There's not much there, and we'll go into more details when water becomes important. Until then, your sims can suck water out of the ground after it rains. The third button is for garbage disposal. The quick and dirty (literally) way to deal with trash is to zone for landfills the same way you zone for other things. You can also build incinerators to burn trash, though that gets expensive and stinky. You could also get a waste-to-energy converter to make trash into electricity. Finally, you can plop down a couple recycling centers around the city and hope your sims save a tree. +-------------------+ |4e. Civic Buildings| +-------------------+ Civic buildings are generally administrative. They have specific sizes and uses, and require some planning to be used effectively. The first button lets you slap down a few police stations and jails (sorry, no donut shops). You can go with small stations at first, but soon the crime will be a little too large and will need a bigger place to deal with things. All stations have small internal jails, but those will quickly fill up, so you need to build jails eventually to keep criminals behind bars and off the streets. The second button is your fire department. Again, you can make a little station that serves a neighborhood or two, but large cities need large stations. The third button is your educational department. Schools come in three major varieties: elementary schools for the kids, high schools for the adolescents, and city colleges for the young adults. Education is pretty expensive, so make sure your other needs are suited to first. You can also build libraries and museums here, which assist adults and senior citizens from getting stupider than rocks. The fourth button of the civic buildings tier is for the city's health. You can build tiny clinics, or decent hospitals. You'll also eventually be able to build a disease research center, which assists your other health buildings in extending your sims' lives. The fifth button is real-world landmarks that help attract tourists and businesses to the town. Unlike in SimCity 3000, these cost, and some are astronomical in price. You can only have one of each per town. The sixth button gives you access to rewards... once you meet the requirements, anyway. You can also build business-deal buildings such as casinos and malls, although those aren't listed initially. The seventh and final button is where you can build recreational buildings and sites. Green cities make the environmentalists happy, especially because they cut down the pollution poisoning the city. +-------------+ |4f. Bulldozer| +-------------+ The first of the smaller buttons is the bulldozer. This is your destruction tool, used for taking out trees, buildings, pipes, power lines, and everything else in your way. This does NOT remove zones. To do that, go into any tool that lets you BUILD zones, and you'll get a tool called De-Zone. +------------+ |4g. Dispatch| +------------+ In games, "dispatch" normally means "to kill." Here though, it means to send your police and firemen out to combat crimes and fires. Whenever there's an emergency, used the options in that to send your boys in blue and yellow to their targets. In SimCity 3000, there was an emergency siren here as well, used to warn the city when a tornado or alien attack threatened their lives. It's been removed, so you don't have to stress about hitting a warning button the instant disaster looms. +-------------------+ |4h. Everything Else| +-------------------+ The buttons under the tools won't be messed with too much, but I'll explain anyway. The button on the left re-enters God Mode. However, it's a VERY limited version. You can start disasters, reconcile the city edges (talked about in the God Mode section), or nuke the city. If you decide to nuke your city, it's a PERMANENT decision, so be really careful with that command. You can also enable or disable the day/night cycle the graphics go through. If you have a dark monitor, you may want to force the world to stay in the day the whole time so you can see what you're doing. Doing so will not change the internal clock that your sims live by. The middle button takes you to Mayor Mode, with the tools. The third button takes you to My Sim Mode, which I'll get into later. Below that is a question mark. That's your query tool. Click that, then click a building to get some REALLY valuable information about it. In the very bottom-left corner is a mini-map. There are arrows where you can rotate it, or zoom in and out. There are also speed settings near there, in case you want time to fly. Finally, you have your options button. You can save the city, exit to the region, exit to Windows, or alter your options. +--------------------+ |+------------------+| ||5. GETTING STARTED|| |+------------------+| +--------------------+ Okay, now you know how to at least throw down buildings, so let's start zoning stuff! +------------------+ |5a. Infrastructure| +------------------+ The first thing you need is a power plant, so click the Utilities tool, then the Electricity button. As a new city, you have access to only the most basic plants: wind, coal, natural gas, and oil. This is your first big decision: what are you most interested in? If you want a clean city, stick with wind or natural gas. If you just want to get a high population quickly, go for coal. Whatever you choose, find a nice corner of the map and plop it down. City edges are absolute, and pollution that spills off your map does NOT enter adjacent cities. This way you can remove almost half of the building's pollution from the start. If you chose windmill plants, you'll need several, but if you chose anything else, one will do. Now that you've got some power, you'll need to zone land so your sims know what to build where. Sims, like real humans, have the NIMBY opinion when it comes to power plants: Not In My BackYard. Do you want to live next to a stinky coal plant? Neither do sims. Go a fair distance away from the plant and build your first industrial zone. I always start with dirty industrial zones to get a solid foundation of the city, then expand outward. Your industrial zone or zones should be large enough to support a decent influx of people, but they shouldn't be so large that your town is flooded with smoke. I normally go with two 8x8 zones that are fully enclosed with roads (not streets). Those will go up, but they have no place to give their finished goods. You need to build some commercial zones, but right now you'll have nothing but tiny local businesses. Go some more away from the industrial zone in the direction opposite the power plant, and build a few commercial zones of light density. Let the computer build streets as it needs to; you can take finer control of that aspect later, once you get more accustomed to the way things work. Once that's ready, both the industrial zones and commercial zones need workers. Build a large number of medium residential zones as close to the commercial zones as possible on the side opposite the industries. That way, your people won't be smelling like smoke TOO badly, if at all. Again, let the computer build streets as it needs to. However, make sure you build roads that connect all the zones to each other. You'll also need one road that links the power plant with the rest of the city. Within a month or three, you should be getting your first people and businesses! Woo hoo! Let your city run awhile, because you'll have to wait for things to happen before you can take additional steps. If you're impatient, speed the game until you have a few hundred or few thousand people. +---------+ |5b. Recon| +---------+ A mayor is only as good as his or her information. You need to be provided with detailed maps and such of situations, and luckily, it's all there for you! With Mayor Mode active, check out the stuff to the right of the buttons (on the bottom edge of the screen). You're presented with several things: your mayor rating, the city's cash, the city's population, the RCI meter, six status bars, and five tabs that provide information. Your mayor rating is based on a scale from -100 to +100 that rates your overall general performance. The six status bars to the right are heavily weighed for your mayor rating, but it's not that simple of a calculation. The money and population counts are self explanatory, but the RCI meter is not. The RCI meter provides you with a GENERAL opinion of the situation of the city. The taller the bar, the more that zone is in demand. The lower the bar, the less it's demanded. Bear in mind that no other situation is taken into account: even if you fill up every square inch of your city's boundaries with something, the RCI meter will still be active. You can click the RCI meter to get even more detail about what's hot and what's not, but don't get too dependent on the details. For example, if nothing but farms are being asked for in the industry zones, but you don't want farms, just ignore the demands. The sims will have to deal. If you did click the RCI meter, then you'll notice that the fifth tab became active. I'll talk more about it in a sec. For now, click the second tab, the one with a person. This is your advisor screen. They give frequent reports about everything in their departments. If their picture is on a green background, they're happy about things. If the background is red, they're none too pleased. If it's blue, they don't care one iota either way. Click on any one of their pictures to get a list of their reports. As a new mayor, their first reports are just introductory resumes, where they tell you what they do and what they watch for. As time goes on, they'll make real reports about different things as they need to. The third tab of that section takes you to your budget. You're given a simple chart of your current money, your monthly expenses, your monthly income, and your projected total after the month ends. Obviously, you want your income to be higher than your expenses, but young cities will struggle in doing so. You can get a more detailed look at your budget by clicking the small report. The screen will expand and show your expenses and incomes, and you can further go into detail. I'll worry about that later as well. For now, just click the fourth tab in that group. This is your data view, or map. You can see various aspects of your city through this to hunt down problems or see successes. As an example, click the traffic option. You'll see which roads and streets are more traveled than others. Red routes mean the path should be upgraded, whether that means changing a street to a road, or adding bus stops, or something else. The last tab takes you to a bunch of charts and grafts. This is where you can get a general breakdown of people or services. Wanna know how your crime rate compared to five years ago? You can do that here. Use this information as much as you need to. There's plenty of trouble that can happen, and the sooner and more you know about it, the better. Don't use it just to figure out what's wrong, though. See what's right, and make sure you don't ticker with what's working. +-------------+ |5c. Expanding| +-------------+ With the city doing its thing, it's time to start planning for improvements. Services such as police protection are still not needed, but the time is coming short. For now, just look to see what can be expanded. Plan out new neighborhoods, new industrial zones, and new business sectors. Zone them once you can see them in your head. Don't bother zoning for new places if the ones you already haven't aren't full. My experience tells me that residential zones will fill up fastest, so you'll have to be zoning for more houses first. The only thing aside from zones you'll want to build at this second is a landfill. Garbage becomes a problem fairly early, so you'll need to take of that one as quickly as possible. Build a sizeable landfill (one worth about $1000) near the power plant. Make sure to give it road access as well. +----------------+ |+--------------+| ||6. SMALL TOWNS|| |+--------------+| +----------------+ Once your population hits around 500 people, your people will give you a mayor's house, and will start grumbling about cops and firemen. Not one to be heartless (especially after the neat gift they gave to you), you need to take your sims' lives out of your hands and put them in someone else's. Education isn't much of an issue at the moment, but your sims' safety is. After all, if they get murdered, who's going to be around to pay taxes? The first thing you need to build is a police station. Click the appropriate buttons, then select a small police station. Take a look at it as you drag it around the landscape. See the big circle around it? That's the range the police station has access to. It's scalable, so a crime committed two doors away will have a better chance of being stopped than a crime on the fringe of the radius. Place the police station in such a way where you can cover the whole town (aside from the power plant) if you can. The worst crime is probably in the industrial zone. I'm sure you have a large amount of money left, so build a fire department now. Get a small one and place it so it too covers the whole city if possible. Favor the residential zones if you have to; losing a business won't cut much into your economy, but losing people will. You may also want to put a second small fire department next to your power plant. That prevents your plant from catching flames and exploding, which would result in the loss of power, which is absolutely devastating this early. That second fire department does not need to cover its full radius if it's right next to the plant, so I'll teach you how to make it a little more efficient. Click the query tool (the question mark near the mini-map), then click the station. There's a bar that lists its local funding, which is currently $125 per month. That's way too expensive for a station that has only one objective, so let's fix that. Click and drag the little box to the left to lower the building's funding. Notice that the radius shrinks as you do so. Don't lower it too much, or else the people will go on strike. By now, your people should be going along smoothly, and your people are ready for new challenges. You don't have much for kids to do, so build a few parks or plazas around the town. Unlike previous SimCity games, each rec area costs monthly, so don't go nuts. About five small parks will do for now. Kids can't just play, of course. It's time to address the education issue, and this is where most new cities go down. Build an elementary school, and make sure you place it so it only covers residential areas. Commercial and industrial zones don't breed little sim kids, so it would be a waste to put a school too close to those places. Once the school is placed, grab your query tool and examine the building. The radius is determined by the bus fund, and lowering it any will catch up with you in the end unless you monitor it VERY carefully. The main funding affects how many students it can hold. For now, lower the funding so the school accommodates only 10% of your population. That's still probably high, but you can lower it later. Speaking of which, there's nothing more to do for now. Let your city run itself for awhile. Hope for a profit, but know that your large treasury will hold out for awhile as long as you didn't go crazy with building things earlier. After about two months, query the school again. You'll get a count of its current students. Adjust the funding so you can accommodate all the students and about 50 more. If you put in more funding than that, you're just wasting it, and at this stage, every simoleon counts... especially with schools, where the costs are so bloody high that you wonder why you bother with it in the first place. Trust me, though, that education will pay off... you just won't see it in the short-term. Sim the game for awhile until you get roughly 1000-1500 people. (If your population deadlocks before that, you probably have too few residential zones). Once you hit that milestone, your sims' throats will feel a little too parched. Fix that by giving up some cash to build a water tower. Water pumps offer more water, but cost way too much for tiny cities. Choose a site far away from pollution, or else black liquid will come out of faucets, and I'm not talking oil. Once the tower is placed, use water pipes to connect your tower to the rest of the city. Water pipes have a six-tile radius, so you don't have to cover every square inch of your land. An old strategy that I used to subscribe to is to line your roads with water pipes; that way, you can guarantee that every building is watered. However, since you have a monthly fee for every section of pipe that is laid in the city, you can't do that anymore, at least not starting out. Sometime during this part, you'll probably be offered to build a church and/or graveyard. They take up valuable land and don't pay taxes, but they improve your people's morale. As everything, it's up to you; personally, I always build them. All right, your sims now have police protection, fire protection, health care, educational facilities, garbage disposal, and water. Everything is in place to make your city run... but there's probably one major problem you've got, and it plagues all young towns no matter how well experienced the mayor is: money. +------------------+ |+----------------+| ||7. MEDIUM CITIES|| |+----------------+| +------------------+ With the services in place, you need to start being able to fund those services. Money is probably a serious issue at the moment, so you need to start looking for a way to fix it. For the first step, I'll teach you about a really, really nice tool. Click the Data View tab (the fourth one in the batch of five), then click the Desirability category. Here you can see which class of people want which plots of land. Generally, the low class will be happy anywhere, and the rich class will only be happy with places provided with services. If you built your police station, fire department, school, and clinic relatively close to each other, the land value for the radii is astronomical. High land values attract richer people, but you can't soak their cash from their rich little fingers if they have nowhere to live. Spend any remaining money you have on upgrading your zones. Get any medium-density residential zone to its high-density cousin by selecting the high-density zone tool and painting over the residential zones that already exist. You do NOT have to destroy the current buildings to do this. Once you've upgraded the residential zones, upgrade your commercial zones as well. Be aware that you'll need more commercial zones also; your city gets more and more commercial as the years go by, especially in the early days. Reasons are explained later. With all that expansion, you cannot neglect your industrial zones. Expand, expand, expand. Your city is gaining physical size pretty quickly, so consider upgrading your fire department and police station to their larger cousins. One large police station or fire department covers almost an entire city built in the smallest city size. If you took my advice and are playing on the second-smallest plot, a large station effectively covers a quarter of the map. Feel free to upgrade your police station and primary fire department, but you may want to leave your small fire station that is guarding your power plant. Of course, if you CAN eliminate it through intelligent fire coverage, feel free. Unlike zones, you'll have to destroy the original building to replace it with a bigger version. Avoid upgrading your hospital and school for now. It will just eat up your money. However, you SHOULD increase their funding if they're running at or over capacity. +----------------------------+ |+--------------------------+| ||8. METROPOLISES AND BEYOND|| |+--------------------------+| +----------------------------+ For better or for worse, the rest of the game is reactionary. I've found that generally the more you try to make things happen (the Peanut Butter Point excepted), the worse they get. Don't force the issue; if you're impatient, just speed up the sim time for awhile. The goal of the game is whatever you want it to be. Assuming you want a friggin' large city, then you'll have go slow and steady. From your medium city that you've got running, expand outward. Try to fully envelop the radii of your services before seeking out new places to conquer. Keep those land values up, the rate of expansion down, and you'll have success! After you get done upgrading your services, you may still find yourself in the red. Rest assured that it's normal and easy to recover from if you're smart. Take out a loan, then prioritize zoning or building money-making ventures. The easiest way to gain cash is through taxes, so keep those zones filled at all times. Only stop zoning if you're short on cash or there are still empty zones for you. Keep tabs on the population by listening to your advisors. They really do know what they're talking about, although catering to everyone's wishes will leave you broke. Pick and choose what you believe will be the most effective strategy, whether that means blitzing for cash, or blitzing for people, or whatever. One thing that I've noticed make people more happy than anything is education. I detail education and its entire role in your city in a later section. +----------------------------+ |+--------------------------+| ||9. THE PEANUT BUTTER POINT|| |+--------------------------+| +----------------------------+ In all four SimCity games, there's always been one problem that stumps most rookies and many vets alike (myself included). Unless you've got a tiny city or are ridiculously lucky, you will come to a point where the city will simply stop growing. Your education levels will level out, your hospitials will be exactly where you want them, all zones will be filled but no more will be asked for, and you'll be getting a steady income with average-or-less complaints about tax rates. The city becomes stagnant as far as growth goes; it becomes a sticky trap, where everyone comes in, no one leaves, but everyone reproduces to keep everything running like a machine. The stickiness is what I call the "Peanut Butter Point." Get the pun? Ha ha ha! A-hem. Anyway, the Peanut Butter Point is deadly, because you may think your game is over. It seems that if you try to make any additional zones or other things, no one wants them. If you take stuff away, then you're defeating the purpose. What's the point of continuing? Of course, you can always start a new city, but I don't like doing that until every single tile within city limits has a purpose. Okay, let's say you've got a good-sized city going. Even if it seems no one is moving in, you may not have hit your Peanut Butter Point yet. Here's a checklist... -Are ALL your schools funded enough to avoid overcrowding? -Are ALL your hospitals funded enough to avoid over crowding? -Are ALL your libraries and museums funded enough to give the people what they want? -Do you have enough police stations and fire stations to cover your whole city? -Do you have enough jails so they have room to accomodate more prisoners? -Is your trash amount under your capacity? -Are you getting few (if any) complaints on the tax rate? -Are all zones and buildings powered and watered? ...Those problems are easy to fix. Of course, if you answered yes to those questions, here's the second (shorter) list... -Are ALL your zones set to maximum density? (assuming you want maximum density; farms can't be in areas that dense, of course) -Do you have an airport complimenting your commercial sector? -Do you have a seaport complimenting your industrial sector? (assuming you've got water access) ...If the answer to those questions are "yes" also, then you've hit your Peanut Butter Point. +-----------------------+ |9a. What To Do About It| +-----------------------+ The Peanut Butter Point is not the end of your game; in fact, it's the start of a whole new set of challenges. The first thing you need to do when hitting that point is not to panic. In my rookie days, I used to think that the reason people weren't coming in was because there was something wrong with my policies. So, I lowered tax rates, issued more ordinances, built tons of parks, and generally threw in a whole bunch of stuff to make everyone happy... or so I thought. Between the lowered tax and new ordinances, though, my money well quickly ran dry. The question you're asking by now is, how can you make your city overcome that Peanut Butter Point. A common phrase in comedy and the entertainment industry in general is "Leave your audience wanting more." Concentrate on what is RIGHT in your town. There is very, VERY seldom the perfect city. If you've hit the Peanut Butter Point, it's not because the city is too bad, nor is it that your city is too good; it's because there's too much of a balance between what you have right and what you have wrong. I hate saying this, but for the sims' own good, the best way to make your city get out of its sticky trap is to piss everyone off. Before starting, make sure you have plenty of cash. This method can get a bit expensive. Find the best part of town. Just check the map and look for whatever place has the highest land value and highest city aura. If you have multiple spots, pick an area that is pretty big, but not the biggest. Call this place "Ground Zero." Find out why the land value is so high; it's usually high education and low crime. Grab the keys to your trusty bulldozer, start that MF'er up, and give the kiddies a permanent vacation from school--break open the jails too, while you're at it. I know it sounds crazy, but trust me. Let the city be confused for awhile. They'll complain and yell about how crappy the town is, but believe it or not, that's what you want temporarily. Take some money (in your coffers, if you can, NOT a loan), and go to a new section of town. Start a "new city" over in that corner. Pretend you're starting a new game, just with an inflated bank account. Build a new, cheap power plant. Build some zones of all three flavors, use streets instead of roads, avoid any police or fire coverage, and refuse to give them any education. Meanwhile, head back to Ground Zero and take out a few dozen parks or so... Do NOT re-zone or destroy any existing RCI buildings. After a few months, the city aura and value in Ground Zero will just absolutely plummet. However, your sims try to move across town before across the nation. They'll see that new little area you've got developing in the corner of the map, and they'll take interest. While they're thinking of the good ol' days, cut off their water. Back at the new colony, start giving the BASIC services: one elementary school, one clinic, one small police station, and no fire stations... well, maybe a small one, if you feel sorry for 'em. You MIGHT already have a few people coming in, but still not enough to make you get out of your trap. After that little colony is established, expand it out. Again, pretend it's a new city; just ignore that big mess of people on the other side of the river. Build some parks and other recreational areas, and raise the zones' densities now and then. Once it looks pretty solid, build a road that connects this little colony to the main city. Get a subway connecting the two also if you can to make any commuter stupid enough to make THAT trip happy. People will start to come into the new colony SLOWLY. This is not an instant method here, it takes some time. But, while you're biding that time, you can help out other sectors. For example, one thing that's commonly overlooked in SimCity 4 is your industrial zones' distances to freight access. They like being close to extra-city connections, especially railroads. If that's not an option, they want a freight station (linked to a railroad going out of town, of course) that's very close by. Try to improve that too. Eventually, the demand will be met for the colony, but because it was smaller than Ground Zero, there will still be demand for the city as a whole. You may want to start upgrading stuff around the colony (like bigger police stations and such), but don't. If you feel the need to give them SOMETHING, let 'em have water. Otherwise, that's the ghetto of your city; let it suffer for now. So, to fill the rest of that demand, you need to restore Ground Zero. Work backwards: give them back water, then parks, then their services. Do it slowly enough that the area doesn't get flooded, but work fast enough that everyone forgets the place exists. I find that restoring one part of Ground Zero ever three to four months works the best. In time, people who moved to the colony will move back, or the newcomers who started in the colony will move into Ground Zero. That will free up room in the colony, and it's STILL cheap land for the poorer classes to afford. Once Ground Zero is restored, start upgrading the colony to make it a full-fledged suburb, or maybe a large city of its own. Even before it maxxes out its borders though, expand as much as you can. The big thing is to keep low land value areas that are ripe for the poor to live in. This way, you're always "leaving your sims wanting more." They want better education or whatever in the new colonies; don't give it to them unless 1) it's all that's left for your city borders, or 2) you have plenty of low-value area as well. +-----------------------+ |9b. An Alternate Method| +-----------------------+ The thing about the above method is that it's risky. If your Ground Zero is the heart of the city, then everything will end up collapsing, and you may never recover. It's ridiculously expensive too, because you'll be going on abbreviated taxes until everything gets restored. There are a couple more tips I can offer if you don't want to risk the above technique, or you don't have the cash. This is a little less sure and slower, but if the sims don't bite, you won't lose nearly as much. The basic thing is that you still have to force the sims' polygonal hands. There's no Utopia; all cities can be improved. You have to isolate one part of the city and make it so damned attractive that anyone who's anyone will want to live there. Find an area like Ground Zero above, the best of the best districts in your city. Double-check all its civic buildings and services. Check the roads and intersections. Check freight times for industrial zones and commute times for residential zones. Improve the obvious first. Next, look for ANY spot of yellow on the crime map. It doesn't matter how big or small. Take out whatever building is on top of the area no matter what it is and plop down a large police station with $250/month funding. If there's a region of parks, take them out and try to get in zoos or stadiums or something instead. Find the corner of the area that's just the SLIGHTEST below maximum value, take out all buildings directly at the area, and purchase a landmark to put there. If you put a landmark near that high-value area, especially near the fringe, then you'll really make people want it. You can also look to steal people away from other cities. Enact a few tourist ordinances, give them a year to kick in, then zone and build a colony like I stated above. The tourists will stop by and see your city, drool over it, and want to be a part of it. Give them a place to go, and you'll have growth faster than you can say "Choosy moms choose Jif." Oh, one more thing. Get rid of any business deal buildings if you can. Large cities shouldn't need them, and you'll make the general aura of the ENTIRE city better by tossing them. That alone can do wonders for growth. +-----------------+ |+---------------+| ||10. MY SIM MODE|| |+---------------+| +-----------------+ By clicking the third button in the main group of three (it's to the right of Mayor Mode--it has a picture of a pair of sims), you can insert a sim into your city and get one-on-one advice. In theory, this provides you with exacting detail about one part of town, and you can hear about problems a little sooner from your little sim than your advisors. Also in theory, if you're lucky enough to also own a copy of The Sims and any of its five-going-on-six expansions, you can get even more personalized info. In practice, the My Sim Mode falls partially short of its goals. Although you can indeed import your sims from The Sims, any sim is like any other sim. The ones that ship with SimCity 4 are no better or worse than your own creations. Also, once you inject a sim into a house, you lose complete control over it, and can't really dictate what job class or whatnot it chooses. That's not to say it's totally worthless, though. You still do get sound advice from your sims quicker than your advisors, and they are a pretty good representation of their neighborhood. I normally keep about two or three in my cities to stay on track, though I normally know about their problems before they tell me. Anyway, to start off, click the My Sim Mode button. You'll get five empty portraits; click one to bring up the list of available sims. Your sims from The Sims aren't on the list at the start. To get them there, click the Import Sims button, the one that looks like a computer. SimCity 4 quickly scans your The Sims directory and adds any and all non-Townie sims to your roster. You'll only have to do this once, unless you make more sims in The Sims and want to move them in. Select any sim, but be advised that they're only faces and names. A kid sim will be no different in your town than an adult. Once you select a sim, you'll get an arrow. Point it to the house you want the sim to move into. Doing that will immediately make them take on the personality of the house... if you move them to a rich house, they will have mucho dinero and high education. They'll take a job based on their class, and you can see them drive to and from work every day. You'll get reports on their lives through the main news screen, or you can click their portrait in My Sim Mode. You can choose to just ignore them and let them deal with your decisions, or you can actively try to kill their problems and improve their assets. They'll keep you guessing, sometimes changing careers, sometimes moving across town... check out their reaction if you bulldoze their house while they're at work. ^_^ Your sims have lifespans, and once they reach a certain age, they'll kick it. Luckily, they'll be replaced with a new sim with the same name, just with a number. (Pyro Falkon's replacement is Pyro Falkon the 2nd, whose replacement is Pyro Falkon the 3rd, etc.) ====================================================== | PART 3: REFERENCE | ====================================================== This part of the FAQ deals with a database of power plants, their costs, and value, along with personal comments. Also is a description of the various ordinances in the game. However, this section is NOT strategy... that comes later. +------------------+ |+----------------+| ||11. POWER PLANTS|| |+----------------+| +------------------+ Here I list all the power plants alphabetically, their requirements (if any), their costs, their values, and my opinion on their operation and efficiency. +----------------+ |Coal Power Plant| +----------------+ Requirements: None Initial Cost: $10,000 Monthly Cost: $250 Power Generated: 6,000 MWh Value: 24 MWh/$1 Comments: The power plant with the best value is also the dirtiest. Its low monthly cost, however, and high value make it perfect for young cities. At the beginning, avoid this one only if you're bound and determined to keep your grass green from start to finish. +--------------------+ |Hydrogen Power Plant| +--------------------+ Requirements: 4,000+ high-tech jobs 30,000+ MWh/month demanded Initial Cost: $100,000 Monthly Cost: $10,000 Power Generated: 50,000 MWh Value: 5 MWh/$1 Comments: By the time you CAN build it, you can probably afford it. It's extremely clean and totally reliable. There are other alternatives, but for its capacity and cleanliness, you can't get a better deal. +-----------------------+ |Natural Gas Power Plant| +-----------------------+ Requirements: None Initial Cost: $9,000 Monthly Cost: $400 Power Generated: 3,000 MWh Value: 7.5 MWh/$1 Comments: Although cheaper than a coal power plant, it makes far less power. Then again, it's MUCH cleaner, and you can get your people to live just a BIT closer to it. A nice alternative to coal if you're starting out. +-------------------+ |Nuclear Power Plant| +-------------------+ Requirements: 85,000+ overall population 25,000+ MWh/month demanded Initial Cost: $40,000 Monthly Cost: $3,000 Power Generated: 16,000 MWh Value: 5.3 MWh/$1 Comments: Nuclear power doesn't pollute much, but there's a chance that the plant will meltdown, especially if it catches fire. If it does that, it will make a rather large radius of land radioactive, and you can't do anything with radioactive land for the rest of the game. Although that's a high risk, if your power plant is well covered with fire stations, you'll be fine. +---------------+ |Oil Power Plant| +---------------+ Requirements: None Initial Cost: $17,000 Monthly Cost: $600 Power Generated: 7,000 MWh Value: 11.7 MWh/$1 Comments: The second-best deal on the market has a high initial price tag. It's cleaner than coal, so you may want to trash your coal plant in favor of oil once you're making a large profit. +-----------------+ |Solar Power Plant| +-----------------+ Requirements: 3,000+ high-class residents +55 or better Mayor Rating Initial Cost: $30,000 Monthly Cost: $1,000 Power Generated: 5,000 MWh Value: 5 MWh/$1 Comments: Cleaner than your grandma's kitchen, this plant is a reward for having rich people inhabiting your town. People have little problem living next to it. The problem is that it's darn expensive for clean power, and one little solar plant doesn't produce nearly enough power to keep a large town satisfied. Only build these if you're simply expanding your power, not replacing it. +---------------------+ |Waste-to-Energy Plant| +---------------------+ Requirements: None Initial Cost: $25,000 Monthly Cost: $1,000 Power Generated: 5,000 MWh Value: 5 MWh/$1 Comments: A cheaper version of the solar power plant, this type is available from the start. However, its initial cost is a little high for young cities, and the pollution it generates is ridiculous. It reduces garbage, but don't look here for a permanent waste OR permanent energy solution. +--------+ |Windmill| +--------+ Requirements: None Initial Cost: $500 Monthly Cost: $50 Power Generated: 200 MWh Value: 4 MWh/$1 Comments: The cleanest form of power is the worst deal. However, windmill plants are excellent to use if you need temporary bursts of power when you don't have the money or desire to get a full-sized plant. Unless you want to lose a bunch on money, don't rely fully on these. +----------------+ |+--------------+| ||12. ORDINANCES|| |+--------------+| +----------------+ This is a list of all the ordinances in the game. To access them, click your budget tab, then expand it, and click the eye beside the City Ordinances line. They are listed here in the same order as they are on the budget screen. +------------------+ |Legalized Gambling| +------------------+ The only ordinance that will actually make money instead of costing it, this will put a guaranteed $100 in your bank every month. The problem is that it's not scalable, and once you hit several thousand people, $100 per month isn't going to be worth much. Still, young cities seriously benefit from it, and it leads to getting a casino business deal. +------------------------------+ |Community CPR Training Program| +------------------------------+ A small amount of money is taken from the treasury to teach people how to perform CPR. This increases the lifespan of all sims, and it improves their overall attitude. I recommend it once your city gets going smoothly to assist your health clinics and hospitals, but not from the outset of the game. +--------------------------+ |Water Conservation Program| +--------------------------+ Money is spent to reduce the amount of water all buildings use. Residents don't have a problem with it, but industries don't like it one bit. This reduces the industry demand, but seriously increases your water capacity. It comes with a hefty price tag, though. +-----------------------------+ |Paper Waste Reduction Program| +-----------------------------+ Similar to the water conservation program, the paper waste reduction program cuts down garbage and ticks off industries in the process. Again, don't enact it if there are industrial zones empty. Use it to support your sanitation department. +-------------------+ |Free Clinic Program| +-------------------+ Places are set up throughout the city to give free medical treatment to your poorer sims. City-wide health greatly increases at a monetary expense. I don't like this one, because I prefer to have rich people in my cities who can afford to go to hospitals. If you have a tiny town, though, you may want to consider it. +----------------------+ |Smoke Detector Program| +----------------------+ This program installs smoke detectors on all buildings. This cuts down on city-wide flammability, assisting your fire departments. The only downfall is the cost, which isn't much at all. I recommend you enact this one as soon as you can. +--------------------------+ |Neighborhood Watch Program| +--------------------------+ Your vigil sims will assist the cops in cutting crime in residential zones. Not too bad of an option, considering its relatively low cost, but I don't normally use it. +-------------------------+ |Tourism Promotion Program| +-------------------------+ This one advertises your city to other cities. More people will come to check out your town, which adds to your commercial