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GlassBox
Banned
(03-09-2013, 08:59 AM)
Heh, somehow Polygon keeps getting her story first: http://www.polygon.com/2013/3/9/4081...-lucy-bradshaw
(long article, so I can't post the whole thing of course) New news, new thread. Not that many will believe her, and no doubt less will like what she has to say.

In an email interview with Polygon this evening, Maxis general manager Lucy Bradshaw says the entire studio with additional help from across Electronic Arts "has been against this challenge 24/7, working in shifts since the moment issues were being reported by our community." Additional SimCity servers are being deployed to bear the load, but simply adding more hardware will not fix the game's current problems.

"We have teams producing new servers, but we've identified that many of our issues were related to how [SimCity's] GlassBox [engine] managed the vast amount of simulation data through its database," Bradshaw explained. "We've addressed that and we've seen an 80% decrease in connectivity or responsiveness issues.

"Still, 80% is not good enough and so we are continuing to aggressively address this area."


Bradshaw said Maxis expects to see "great stability in the game" this weekend. Added server capacity, along with software improvements, is resulting in positive progress, she said.

...

Participation in SimCity's beta, Bradshaw said, along with other "demand metrics," helped determine how many servers Maxis estimated it needed at launch. But the release of SimCity this week brought with it unexpected demand and unforeseen technical challenges. Maxis' estimates were too conservative, it turns out.

"What we underestimated was a huge surge in pre-orders within the last week and the power of the great word-of-mouth created by the media and our community," Bradshaw said.

It wasn't just the number of players either, Bradshaw explained, as SimCity's servers performed differently once the game was released to the "wild ecosystem of live operations."

"We test and work out the capacity load of each server in load testing and through our beta events," she continued. "We have seen play behavior and load in areas that have stressed our game server [databases] in ways that we did not experience in Beta or Load Test.

Upon release, Maxis discovered that player capacity per server wound up being lower than anticipated in a live environment, Bradshaw said. The developer has applied fixes and optimizations, both on the client and server side, to address that.

...

What Maxis can't do, despite fan requests, Bradshaw said, is simply strip out the always-online architecture of the game.

"An online interconnected world has been part of our design philosophy since day one," she said. "It's the game that we've been wanting to create since SimCity 4 as we've wanted to explore the dynamics between cities as they exist within regions. Real cities don't exist in bubbles; they specialize and trade resources, workers and more.

"With the way that the game works, we offload a significant amount of the calculations to our servers so that the computations are off the local PCs and are moved into the cloud. It wouldn't be possible to make the game offline without a significant amount of engineering work by our team."


...

"Lastly, crisis brings out the best in Maxis. Everyone here put their hearts and souls into this game it was an incredibly proud achievement to deliver the game we'd always wanted to build. To see it have these problems, and incite the community reaction that is has, has been heartbreaking for every single one of us. I'm incredibly proud of my team because they care so much about the people that play their games.

"Our team is working around the clock because they love SimCity and they want everyone to be able to play the game we intended them to experience."

Asked what she'd say to SimCity fans who can't play the game they purchased, Bradshaw pleaded to them, "Stick with us."

"Some of you have been fans of Maxis and SimCity for more than 20 years, through good times and challenging times like now. We love what we do and once this is behind us we hope that you'll see a great game created by passionate people."

Last edited by GlassBox; 03-09-2013 at 09:02 AM.
kenta
Has no PEINS
(03-09-2013, 09:05 AM)
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"Real cities don't exist in bubbles"?

Good call. They exist in 2km squares
Mrbob
how can the baaasheep
enjoy the shootbang?
(03-09-2013, 09:06 AM)
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Guess that internal memo of working with the media to run damage control rang true.

Protect the 9.5.
ClovingWestbrook
Banned
(03-09-2013, 09:08 AM)
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I'll stick by you Maxis. I'll pick up the game during a future Origin Free Game error or when it's $5.
Nokterian
Member
(03-09-2013, 09:08 AM)
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Keep spinning around lucy..keep spinning.
shira
Member
(03-09-2013, 09:11 AM)
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Originally Posted by Nokterian

Keep spinning around lucy..keep spinning.

Is she the fall girl?
http://www.resumemaker.com/ResumeMaker/home.jsp
toddhunter
Member
(03-09-2013, 09:11 AM)
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Would love to know their current planned date to turn all the servers off.
Htown
STOP SHITTING ON MY MOTHER'S HEADSTONE
(03-09-2013, 09:16 AM)
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Originally Posted by kenta

"Real cities don't exist in bubbles"?

Good call. They exist in 2km squares

Nice.

Honestly, with the PR they've had on this game since day one, it seems like somebody over there is more concerned with making Sim City a message game than anything else. Remember the announcement of Sim City with all their weird philosophy and environmentalist talk, and bringing people up who didn't have anything to do with games?
MormaPope
Member
(03-09-2013, 09:27 AM)
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If you thought Tomb Raider had terrible PR, SimCity takes the cake and buries it.
speedpop
Has problems recognising girls
(03-09-2013, 09:29 AM)
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If only the game had been offline....
Treythalomew
Member
(03-09-2013, 09:29 AM)
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They didn't expect preorders to increase in the last week even though that was when the tv ads started?
Escape Goat
(03-09-2013, 09:29 AM)
Glass box engine

GlassBox
Member
(Today, 01:59 AM)

Lucy Bradshaw is that you?
sono
Member
(03-09-2013, 09:33 AM)
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This response doesnt inspire me with confidence.
Htown
STOP SHITTING ON MY MOTHER'S HEADSTONE
(03-09-2013, 09:34 AM)
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Originally Posted by Escape Goat

Glass box engine

Lucy Bradshaw is that you?

WUH OH


massoluk
Member
(03-09-2013, 09:35 AM)
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"It can't go offline, we offloaded shits to our servers."
"We decided to offload shits to our servers, and now they overload the servers to crash."
Acorn
Member
(03-09-2013, 09:37 AM)
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Originally Posted by Treythalomew

They didn't expect preorders to increase in the last week even though that was when the tv ads started?

And its generally when big digital games always see pre order surges. This isn't EA's first rodeo, they should and do know better.
speedpop
Has problems recognising girls
(03-09-2013, 09:38 AM)
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Originally Posted by Htown

WUH OH


Have we found the new holy grail?
Drencrom
Member
(03-09-2013, 09:38 AM)
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Originally Posted by Htown

WUH OH


Damage control ahoy
Bboy AJ
Talks to himself
(03-09-2013, 09:41 AM)
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Originally Posted by Htown

WUH OH


[IMG]http://i.minus.com/i8VLwKx37S8e.PNG[/MG]

I don't think this picture is conclusive.
DocSeuss
Member
(03-09-2013, 09:45 AM)
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The idea that cities work with each other and stuff is, I suppose, an interesting one, but they could have gone about this in so many different ways (like, y'know, a multiplayer mode).
maniac-kun
Member
(03-09-2013, 09:45 AM)
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Sup EA damage controle bot?
Palette Swap
Member
(03-09-2013, 09:46 AM)
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Originally Posted by Htown

WUH OH


Haha.
BorkBork
The Legend of BorkBork: BorkBorkity Borking
(03-09-2013, 09:48 AM)
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Originally Posted by Htown

Nice.

Honestly, with the PR they've had on this game since day one, it seems like somebody over there is more concerned with making Sim City a message game than anything else. Remember the announcement of Sim City with all their weird philosophy and environmentalist talk, and bringing people up who didn't have anything to do with games?

What weird philosophy and environmentalist talks? I haven rapid attention to the game's development, but I may be interested in this.
industrian
will gently cradle you as time slowly ticks away.
(03-09-2013, 09:53 AM)
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Originally Posted by Htown

WUH OH


The plot thickens...

Seik
Member
(03-09-2013, 09:57 AM)
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Originally Posted by industrian

The plot thickens...

Detective GAF: Activated.
DiscoJer
Junior Member
(03-09-2013, 09:59 AM)
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Glassbox is also the name of the "engine" SimCity runs on, so I would guess he's just a big fan.
AkIRA_22
Member
(03-09-2013, 09:59 AM)
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Valnen
Member
(03-09-2013, 10:02 AM)
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Originally Posted by industrian

The plot thickens...

If the implication here is that he's an EA employee, this is hardly proof of anything.
BobLoblaw
Member
(03-09-2013, 10:05 AM)
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Originally Posted by Valnen

If the implication here is that he's an EA employee, this is hardly proof of anything.

This is GAF. Since when do we need proof?
Valnen
Member
(03-09-2013, 10:06 AM)
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Originally Posted by BobLoblaw

This is GAF. Since when do we need proof?

If you're going to make accusations against people it's a good thing to have.
jamesinclair
smells clean, brushes teeth. Also combs hair regularly.
(03-09-2013, 10:08 AM)
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Join Date: 04-03-2012

The official announcement took place on March 6, 2012

Takes about a month to get GAF account approved.....



Poster has also started threads about Oakland and BART...



Maxis is based right by Oakland. (Emeryville).
Last edited by jamesinclair; 03-09-2013 at 10:12 AM.
Paches
Member
(03-09-2013, 10:09 AM)
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Originally Posted by jamesinclair

Join Date: 04-03-2012

The official announcement took place on March 6, 2012

Takes about a month to get GAF account approved.....



Poster has also started threads about Oakland and BART...

Maxis is based right by Oakland. (Emeryville).

Oh shit...
Kazerei
(03-09-2013, 10:10 AM)
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I love DetectiveGAF, even if it's just a crazy witch hunt :lol
BobLoblaw
Member
(03-09-2013, 10:11 AM)
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Originally Posted by Valnen

If you're going to make accusations against people it's a good thing to have.

Username: Glassbox
SimCity engine name: Glassbox
Multiple threads touting how EA is handling "overblown" issues.

That's enough to know that even if it's not an EA employee, it's someone running damage control. Any reasons why a normal poster would post multiple threads in such a short time-frame defending what is clearly the worse launch in history? I can't think of any.
Professor Beef
holds a doctorate in beef
(03-09-2013, 10:12 AM)
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trudderham
Member
(03-09-2013, 10:13 AM)
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Originally Posted by Htown

WUH OH


Last edited by trudderham; 03-09-2013 at 10:20 AM.
Valnen
Member
(03-09-2013, 10:14 AM)
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Originally Posted by jamesinclair

Join Date: 04-03-2012

The official announcement took place on March 6, 2012

Takes about a month to get GAF account approved.....



Poster has also started threads about Oakland and BART...



Maxis is based right by Oakland. (Emeryville).

I live in California too. Guess I'm a Maxis employee!
valeo
Member
(03-09-2013, 10:15 AM)
dc89
Member
(03-09-2013, 10:15 AM)
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:lol I love detective GAF.
Pandemic
Member
(03-09-2013, 10:15 AM)
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Originally Posted by Htown

WUH OH


Hahahahaha, nice one.
TheForceWithin
Junior Member
(03-09-2013, 10:17 AM)
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AppleMIX
Member
(03-09-2013, 10:17 AM)
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Well this is going to be a great thread.
alba
Little is the new Big
(03-09-2013, 10:17 AM)
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Originally Posted by dc89

:lol I love detective GAF.

I was about to say that, time to get some popcorn. We're in for some good stuff.
el retorno
Member
(03-09-2013, 10:17 AM)
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Weirdly worded question that sounds like its from someone at least that worked on the game,

Originally Posted by GlassBox

Can you provide a tiny bit more detail? What features are you enjoying the most?

Festwill
Member
(03-09-2013, 10:19 AM)
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Well, GlassBox, come on out, talk to us.
BobLoblaw
Member
(03-09-2013, 10:21 AM)
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Originally Posted by el retorno

Weirdly worded question that sounds like its from someone at least that worked on the game,

Welp. I'm satisfied. Where's my pitchfork...
fanboi
Proud Citizen of Oopsy Daisy
(03-09-2013, 10:24 AM)
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GlassBox, tell us your <parameter: string> of the story.
Valnen
Member
(03-09-2013, 10:24 AM)
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Originally Posted by el retorno

Weirdly worded question that sounds like its from someone at least that worked on the game,

Even I admit that's pretty damning. At least there's no rule against people from game studios posting here. For some reason some people don't like that, though.
Mister Saturn
Member
(03-09-2013, 10:26 AM)
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Originally Posted by Valnen

Even I admit that's pretty damning. At least there's no rule against people from game studios posting here. For some reason some people don't like that, though.

Full disclosure is expected in these sorts of situations.
el retorno
Member
(03-09-2013, 10:26 AM)
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They posted in the unemployed thread though.

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