I love SimCity 4 – I really do but having a Mac is a disadvantage if you want to play SimCity 4 Rush Hour. So when Aspyr Media Inc. came out with the Mac DVD port back in 2004 I was happy – I was joyful for their support to bringing this Masterpiece to the great Mac. Alas this was not meant to be due to gameplay/technical problems and night mode glitch, game crashes and numerous problems that eventually deemed it unplayable. I couldn’t forgive Aspyr! A decade passed. A grown man emerged out of boyhood dreams. Matured, self-reliant and respected by his peers. And what about now you ask?
Well, hopes and joy were rekindled by this new digital edition from Aspyr. A new Simcity 4 port for the Mac but now conveniently downloadable! A bastion of simulation gameplay. Updated and corrected Aspyr said. Mac SimCity 4 fans all over the world rejoiced! Our saviour has returned! Could it really be true? Could I relive the lost years, regain the fun and joy that our PC Windows bretheren enjoy? Could I really experience true happiness instead of that void – that emptiness that lives in my core? I hastened myself to press the download button and spend my hard earned cash on this 129 DKK / £13.99 “updated” download for OS X 10.5.8 and later from the Mac App Store with a nifty and exclusive Mac “Custom Tunes” feature that ‘allows your iTunes library to be played in the game’. “Oooh-lala” I said to myself.
Oh the nostalgia. Soon unconditional love filled the body for the true Maxis company when loading SimCity 4 Rush Hour for the first time whilst being embraced by the splash screen of yester-years. Renewed respect emerged for Aspyr. I played and played, seconds turned to minutes, minutes turned to hours and hours turned to…crashes. Wait what happened? I regained composure. As any well respected gentleman I tried to relaunch the game and play again. A crash emerged again. I perspired profusely unbeknownst of this malfunction. I grabbed on refusing this defeat. I was Ceasar. I wasn’t born to be destined for failure. I played again, cautious of this falsehood and noting any change in environment, alas insanity knocked on the door and entered. A crash. Yes, at 5700 population the crash came again. I managed to grow to 6000 strong Sims saving every turn after each construction or change. A tiresome task. Alas the crash came again and again and again, alerting me of its unknown error, its disease. All I was left with was a feeling of delayed gratification and a mundane choice of either ignoring or reopening SimCity 4 Rush Hour. A pattern came to existance. Oh the horror. Oh the terror. I was powerless.
Aspyr promised: The classic city simulation game returns to the Mac!
Gibbon was right: The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire was destined to be written. Rome had failed. The system was corrupt. The higher officials had been dishonest and taken all the riches. As for Aspyr, well Carl Jung said it best: “The man who promises everything is sure to fulfil nothing” It was immoral and unfair and there was nothing I could do to mend it.
That’s when a feeling of loss embraced me as if you knew you were losing someone you dearly loved. It was too soon. If I only had more time, a day more but it was not meant to be. I wept uncontrollably.
Farewell my dear friend. The time that we had was a joyful one alas too short. RIP SimCity 4!
Note: A slightly amended edition of this review has been published in the Mac App Store Denmark.