If you liked the SimCity games, than this is your cup of tea; this game has plenty of depth and is plenty challenging for city builders. The trade system is a bit to figure out but once you get it you can really move your city forward with it. The only thing I don't like, is that you can't easily upgrade roads once you built alongside them, which makes dealing with traffic flow somewhat limited to turning streets into one way streets. The bus and metro systems are much better than in SimCity games, where you had very little control over how the lines would run. You can check out a lot of info on how your city is doing, from satisfaction per household to categories like shopping, healthcare and education.
I haven't noticed any bugs or flaws that some of the reviews were talking about, although my friend’s game slowed down once his cities reached more than 100,000 people. His PC specs were lower than mine so I would suggest have the recommended or a bit higher specs if you plan on making large cities. I'm enjoying the game plenty, well worth its money.
This is a great game with huge replay value! With so many city landscapes (Deserts, Mountains, Deltas, Plains, etc.) and transportation variation, anyone can essentially design any kind of city they like!
You build your cities by sketching out districts (housing, shopping and industrial) onto a sizeable map. Citizens are divided into four classes: Unskilled Workers, Skilled Workers, Executives and Elites. While they all have the same basic needs, they also require good access to specific places of work. Offices will need a mix of Skilled Workers and Executives, while heavy industry demands a lot of unskilled people to keep the factory fires burning.
One of the biggest appeals of Cities 2011 XL is the attractive and realistic graphics. These graphics are supported perfectly by the ability to create curved roads and bridges to give your city a more realistic feel (rather than the grid like experience of other city builders).