There is one game that has burned up more hours in my Super Nintendo then any other game did. Sim City on the SNES.
The story has you as the new mayor being put in charge of a piece of land. Decide what kind of power plant and mode of transportation you will have in the city. Decide where the residents will live, where businessses and jobs go and more. As your city grows so do problems like rising crime rates and pollution and it's your job to deal with them. Crime can be dealt with by building more Police Stations but they cost more tax dollars. Relocating businesses can help get rid of pollution but that costs money also and can cause unemployment. It's a delicate balance for sure. As your city grows, tax dollars grow and more demands grow. Your citizens will demand things like football stadiums and require things like airports. What to do. Better make the right decisions cause theres always a new election around the corner and if the citizens don't like you, you'll be a mayor without a job. To add spice, you can even have disaster's effect your city like Tornados, Fires and even a rampaging monster.
The main gameplay never really ends and it goes on and on and on till you stop playing. Your main goal is to reach a city of 500,000 people. Even with leaving the game play over night with the TV off, I never reached this feat, no matter how hard I tried.
Scenarios also exist with pre-built cities with they're own problems. Some like Bern are easy with bad traffic and wasted tax dollars spent on too many roads. Some like Detroit are really tough with high unemployment and pollution AND crime. I had to replay this 5 times before I got it right.
The SNES added some of they're own spices to improve gameplay over the PC version. One is Dr. Wright who will appear and give you advice or warnings about your city. Another is gifts, where you can earn unique buildings for you city after certain goals are made. Zoos, Casino's Train Stations and more. Getting the 500,000 mark gets you the Mario Statue. I guess thats a third thing is that Mario and Bowser are in the game here and there. Bowser takes the place of the monster who can destroy your city.
The graphics serve they're purpose. Even on the older SNES the buildings aren't the most detailed but they serve they're purpose. You can tell the run down tenement apartments from the high rises in the residential zones. Tiny factories, strip malls, roads and more can be identified.
The music is traditional cute Nintendo faire but that isn't to say bad. The music loops endlessly and sets the mood of the size of the city. The music early on is quaint and more down home. As your city grows it gets faster and harder for that hurly burly commute. Sound effects are simple crunches and booms for knocking over buildings or building them.
Sim City on SNES was my first major exposure to the series and it's a good one. Later installments added much more depth and additions to improve gameplay and increase difficulty. First time mayors should wet they're feet with this earlier game on the SNES or PC.
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