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Hallelujah! SimCity finally gets an offline mode

Maxis confirms that the next update to the city-building game will allow you to play without an Internet connection.

Electronic Arts

SimCity will finally be able to go offline.

Patrick Buechner, general manager of Maxis Emeryville, confirmed in a blog post on Monday that the developer was working on a mode that doesn't require an Internet connection, which will come in the next update to the city-building game.

An offline mode has been the single most requested feature from SimCity fans, many of whom have been annoyed by the need for a persistent connection, and the server errors and hiccups that come from such a setup. The launch of SimCity last year was among the largest debacles in gaming, and the subsequent launch of the Mac version was met with similarly disastrous results.

The announcement comes after EA executives previously said that an offline mode would be too difficult to implement and would require a wholesale change in its architecture.

In Update 10, SimCity players will be able to log into their cities, and all of the previously downloaded content will be available no matter what. Beyond the standard online game, there will be a single player mode that allows you to play offline by yourself. Players can save and load the game, rather than rely on the game's current cloud auto-saving feature.

Buechner said that Maxis was in the late phases of wrapping up its development and is still testing the update. There's no word on when this update will arrive.