Sharing is caring in SimCity and Maxis knows that better than anyone. In the latest trailer from our city-building friends, lead designer Stone Librande shows off how he exploits his friends so he can focus on building casinos and making money. Okay, so it's a little more harmless than that, but he does show off some exciting cross-city play and how numerous friends in the same region can work together. This "Multi-City Play" is certain to be popular.
Librande starts off with his casino city running out of power, so he zooms out on the map and claims another city-area from the "Region." It look like a region can hold at least five different city zones, but he didn't go into deal on that. Anyways, he claims another zone and build a coal plant there, which shares power between zones. After this is done, Librande gives the zone to a friend that has just logged on. "Take care of power," Librande commands imperiously. It's good to be lead designer.
Other various aspects of the game can also leak between cities in a region, like police and fire station coverage. After Librande drops a comet on his city, his neighbor's fire trucks came very quickly to the rescue. They even had little portraits above them to signify they come from another person's city. While it wasn't shown, Librande also mentioned that crime can cross over city lines, and I'm willing to be pollution and other nasty things can too.
While shared city building may not be as free and open as I'd love to see (imagine Minecraft with cities), SimCity's Multi-City Play looks like it can be fun in a myriad of ways. That, and it's certainly more than anything we've gotten in previous SimCity games. I can't wait to see what else Maxis has in store! Look forward to SimCity's release in March for PC and Mac and it's probably Origin exclusive.