Cities: Skylines Review | After achieving great success with the PC version, released in 2015, Paradox Interactive brings its most recent city management simulator, Cities: Skylines, for Xbox One. All its riches and complexity really shines on Microsoft platform. Come check the impressions of someone who really became addicted to this game.
- Before trying the game, I was really concerned about how they would adapt all the complexity of the gameplay of mouse and keyboard to the Xbox controller, but I must admit: they’ve done an amazing job! The controls are simple and intuitive and there’s a help function (that you can access pressing the right analog) that always comes in handy!
- The game doesn’t have the most astonishing graphics, but it has an absurd level of detail! You can zoom out to see your entire city (like when you look from an airplane window) or zoom in close enough to see your citizens walk with a dog on the street. There are hundreds of different buildings between residences, industrial, commercial and offices and the service buildings, like school or hospitals. You’ll see dozens of the same building (sometimes, side by side), but it’s really astounding how much effort they’ve put on it.
- The music and sound effects are great! There is few different background music, all instrumental only of great quality. But what I found mind-blowing is how the ambience sound changes according to the area of your city you’re in. If you’re in the suburbs, for instance, the sound effects and background music will adopt a calm tone. Now if you’re downtown, it will sound like you’re close to real offices, with a loud background.
- As the game has no objective for you to go after (it’s a big sandbox), your progress is measured by your total population: the more people lives in your city, you have more access for different services. ‘So, all I must do is to get as many people living in my city as I can?’, you ask me. Well, yes and no. Yes, because you get access to advanced services (like the airport, one of the last constructions I unlocked after reaching 45.00 residents, if I’m not wrong). But no because, to make people want to move to your city, you’ll need to treat them well, meeting all their needs.
- Something that’s also worth mentioning is the level of personalization the game offers you: if you don’t like a building name, you can change it. Want to give some of your citizens your name? Go ahead. Want to change some district politics to save water or energy? By pressing a couple of buttons, you can do it.
- In the beginning, the game explains about everything to you: what each construction does and how to use each function of the menu. But after some time, the game leaves for you to discover how to use the more advanced options. It’s good because the game doesn’t behave like it’s babysitting you. But it’s not that good because you may not understand how to better use some advanced constructions.
- Although the game offers you a refund when you demolish something you have just built and regretted (it happened a lot to me), one function to undo your last action (be it to construct or to deconstruct something) would be great.
- Despite some confusion while placing buildings on the terrain and some strange behavior when selecting or confirming, something that really bothered me is the sound of sirens, be them from police cars, firetrucks or ambulances. And it’s something constant in the city, depending on its size. I wish I could turn them off!
Score: 92% | Cities: Skylines gives you the opportunity to build the city of your dreams in a way that’s easy to understand and even more easier to play! It’s a big sandbox for you to use your imagination and try to build the most successful city ever. It has some small flaws, but they don’t diminish your fun. If you are a fan of city management games, this one is mandatory for you! Now go there and be the best mayor you can
With a history of gaming that goes from his old man’s Atari 2600 to his Xbox One, Rafael or RAF687, our Brazilian editor, has a love for games as old as he can remember. He has already spent countless hours in many consoles (Mega Drive/Genesis, Sega Saturn, PS1, PS2 and Xbox 360) and is always ready for more (as long as his wife is asleep). Raf has been writing for LifeisXbox since 2017, with a passion for games of almost all genres – though we know he has a special place in his heart for RPGs, racing games and anything that includes pixel art. Writing about games has always been a childhood dream to Raf, dream that he has fulfilled reviewing games for you here. You can drop him a message at Twitter, Facebook or Xbox Live at any time.