Concept and Design: Will Wright
Contributions to the concept: Jeff Braun, Michael Bremer
Programming Amstrad version: A. R. Lill
Graphics Amstrad version: J. Lawson
Documentation and tests: INFOGRAMES

Special thanks to: Jeff Braun, Brian Hales, Bruce Joffe, Joelle Jones, Edward Kilham, Stan
Kalisher of Impulse, Kazue Osugi.

Dedicated to Cassidy.

1042 Country Club DR, Suite #C
MORAGA, CA 94556

Software and manual copyright 1989, Maxis Software, Will Wright. All rights reserved.

Limited Warranty:
SimCity is provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. INFOGRAMES warrants to the
original purchaser of SimCity that the floppy disk will be free from defects in materials and
workmanship for ninety days from the date of purchase.

As the original purchaser, you have the right to use SimCity only on a single computer. You
may physically transfer the program from one computer to another provided that the program
is used only on one computer at a time. You may not distribute copies of SimCity or
accompanying documentation to others.

No portion of this manual may be copied, reproduced, translated or reduced to any electronic
medium or machine readable form without the prior written consent of MAXIS and




- Foreword45
- The goals of SIMCITY46
- Loading SIMCITY on AMSTRAD47
- Selecting the level of difficulty48
- The program and data disks48
- The menus of the edit screen49
- Organization of the Edit Screen50
- Movement and screen scrolling51
- Example of beginning the game51
- The MAPS window54
- The BUDGET window56
- The EVALUATION window57
- Description and utilization58
- Description and utilization of the commands62
- Description and utilization of the commands64



- Description and utilization of the commands65
- Description67
- Zone69
- Population - Residential70
- External market - Industrial70
- Internal market - Commercial71
- Power73
- Transport - Traffic73
- Pollution74
- Land value75


A) Foreword

Enter SimCity and take control. Be the undisputed ruler of a sophisticated real-time City
Simulation. Create your own dream city (or dream slum) from the ground up.
Whether you take over an existing city or build a new one, you are the Mayor and City Planner
with complete authority.
Your city is populated by Sims - Simulated Citizens. Like their human counterparts, they build
houses, condos, churches, stores and factories. And, also like humans, they complain about
things like taxes, mayors, taxes, city planners and taxes. If they get too unhappy, they move
out; you collect less taxes, the city deteriorates.



The next few sections will explain the overall concept of SimCity and give information that will
help you win Scenarios and design and build better cities.
SimCity is a SYSTEM SIMULATION. The challenge of playing a SYSTEM SIMULATION
game is to figure out how the system works and take control of it. As master of the system you
are free to use the TOOLS to create and control an unlimited number of systems (in this case
cities) within the framework and limits provided by the RULES.
In SimCity, the RULES to learn are based on city planning and management, including: Human,
economic and political factors, survival factors, the strategies in order to face disasters,
unemployment, crime and pollution, and life quality in your city.

The TOOLS allow you to:
plan, zone terrains, clear the city of trees,
build roadways, airports and sea ports,
set up and maintain a power grid,
sow desolation and destruction creating natural disasters.
But the most important TOOL of all is the Simulator itself. Test your plans and ideas as you
watch the city grow or shrink through the immigration and emigration of industrious Simulated
Citizens. Sims will move in and build homes, hospitals, churches, stores and factories in the
zones you provide, or move out in search of jobs or a better life elsewhere. The success
of the city is based on the quality of the city you design and manage.

B) The goals of SimCity

There are many goals to be pursued and reached in SimCity.
Here is one in particular:
Your dream city
perhaps the main goal of SimCity is for you to design, manage and maintain the city of your
dreams. Your ideal place to live may be a bustling megalopolis, lots of people, lots of cars,
tall buildings; high-energy, high-density living. Or it may be a small rural community, or a linked
group of small communities providing slow paced country living.

As long as your city can provide places for people to live, work, shop and play, it will attract
residents. And as long as traffic, pollution, overcrowding, crime or taxes don't drive them away,
your city will live.




A) Loading SimCity on AMSTRAD

Hardware required for AMSTRAD:
Amstrad 464, 664, 6128 with a disk drive.
A monitor or a colour TV.
A joystick is recommended (before starting SimCity, check that the joystick is properly
connected to the joystick port).
1 or several blank disks to store the data.

Starting the disk version:
Switch on your computer. Insert the program disk in the drive. Switch your computer back on.
Type |CPM (to get |, press the keys @ and SHIFT simultaneously). Press RETURN.

Starting the tape version:
Insert the cassette in the recorder. Switch on the computer. Type RUN "" and press the PLAY
button on your recorder. Press RETURN.

b) Loading SimCity on SPECTRUM

Hardware required for SPECTRUM:
SPECTRUM 48K, 128K+2 with a program recorder.
Or SPECTRUM ZX+3 with a disk drive.
A monitor or colour TV.
1 or several blank disks to store the data.

Starting the disk version:
Switch off your computer and monitor. Insert the program disk in the drive. Switch your
computer back on. The LOADER option will be selected automatically. Press the RETURN
key, the game will load automatically.

Starting the tape version:
Check all the connections. Insert the cassette in the recorder. Type LOAD"" and press the
PLAY button on your recorder. Press RETURN on the keyboard.



C) Selecting the level of difficulty

After the program has loaded, the computer will ask you to choose the difficulty level of the

There are three possibilities.

- 1) EASY: You start the game with 20,000 $. This is the default level. The characters appear
in green instead of blue for the other two options.
- 2) MEDIUM: You start the game with 10,000 $.
- 3) DIFFICULT: You start with 5,000$ only.

To select a level, take the direction UP or DOWN with your joystick. The option you point at
appears with green characters. To confirm, press the FIRE button.
If you don't have a joystick, select the level with the keys Q and A, then confirm, pressing the
space bar.

D) The program and data disks

The SimCity program disk contains programs which run SimCity. When you create new cities,
you will probably want to save them in order to use them later on. For this you need at least
one data disk. Such a disk may contain up to sixteen cities.

To initialize a data disk, insert a new disk in your drive and select the option SIM FORMAT DISK
from the SYSTEM MENU. To do this, place your cursor (joystick or the keys Q and A) on the
SYSTEM option and press the fire button or space bar.
With the joystick or the keys highlight the option SIM FORMAT DISK and press the Fire button
or space bar.

A confirmation window appears. If you want to format your disk, select "YES PLEASE"; if not,
select "NO THANKS". Press the fire button to confirm your choice.

Once the operation is achieved, you return automatically to the EDIT mode. Now get ready to





We will take you now for a walk through SimCity, exploring the fundamental functions and
commands. It will be useful to refer to the ZONE REFERENCE CHART at the end of the manual.
Later, the CITY DYNAMICS will give you precious hints when building your own cities.

A) The menus of the edit screen

When the program has finished loading, you will see the edit screen appear. This is your
main operation field, having at your disposal a view on a portion of your city and its landscape.
In this screen, you will be able to access all the menus of the game. There are four of these

- SYSTEM: which allows you to load, save, start a new city, format data disks and get some
information about the game.
- OPTIONS: which allows you to confirm or inhibit various game settings such as the sound,
the option auto-bulldozer, auto-budget and "zone demolish wait".
- DISASTERS: which allows you to activate disasters - natural or not -within the city limits in
order to spice up the game.



WINDOWS: which allows you to get an Evaluation rating in poll form your performance as city
mayor, and Maps viewing different problems in your town and finally to determine the Budget
and local taxes.

Selecting the MENUS :
Proceed as for formatting disks in paragraph II) D.
The names of these menus are on top of the screen. To select one of these menus, just place
your cursor with the joystick or the keys on the name of the menu and press the fire button or
space bare. A pull-down menu will appear then.

For information, the keyboard direction keys at your disposal are the following:
- O for direction LEFT.
- P for direction RIGHT.
- Q for direction UP.
- A for direction DOWN.

Note: When we talk about pressing the fire button, you may use the space bar as well.

Selecting a menu option:
When opening a menu, the first option on top of this menu is selected automatically. It appears
with green characters instead of blue ones. If you want to confirm this option, press the fire
If you want to select another option, take the direction UP or DOWN with the joystick or the keys,
to highlight another option. When you have made your choice, press the fire button or space bar.
The chosen option will be activated.

If you do not want to select either of the options, choose "EXIT MENU" at the bottom of the
screen and confirm with the space bar.

B) Organization of the edit screen

When you start SimCity, a new terrain will be generated. You will be always free to choose
between using this terrain, generating a new one, modifying or clearing it completely or build
a new one starting from nothing.



From the bottom to 2/3 of the screen, stretches the edit window outlining the terrain area which
you can act upon.
Above this zone, you will see the COMMENT part which displays figures or messages telling
what is going on in your city. A detailed description of this comment part will be given in the

Above the comment part, there is a line of icons allowing you to act on your city and its
environment. We will see later on the details about the utilization of every symbol.

Finally, on the top line of the screen, appears the list of the 4 main menus that we mentioned

C) Movement and screen scrolling

In order to view the whole city, it will be necessary to scroll the screen.

To do this, press the cursor keys. Each time you press a cursor key, the terrain will scroll a little
bit in the chosen direction. Another solution consists in moving the cursor with you joystick to an
edge (right, left or bottom) and keep the same direction pressing the fire button. The terrain will
scroll in the chosen direction.
Or else on AMSTRAD, you place the cursor on the little cross at the left, on top of the screen.
After you have pressed the fire button, the cursor will disappear. Just move the joystick in the
desired direction or use the direction keys. When you want to make the cursor re-appear, press
the fire button again.

If you want to move only the cursor without making the screen scroll, use the direction keys (O,
P, Q, A) or the joystick.

D) Example of first steps in SIM CITY

You are on the edit screen. The icon selected by default is the road icon.
At the beginning you will find an area with much clear terrain, in order to let you start easily.
You cannot build on water except bridges, tunnels and power lines.
You can clear forests (green) and rubble (brown).



The "pointer" is a small, white, flashing square, outlining the area where you put a road section.
To move the pointer use the joystick or the keys (O, P, A, Q).

Move your pointer over some forest land and press the fire button. The forest section under
your pointer is now a road. Now, trace a circle in order to design a kind of ring road. (Do not
make it too large. Stay within the screen limits and don't overestimate your city's development).
Then go to the next step.

Detailed explanation of the comment part:
Each edit function has its price. In the upper left corner of the screen, in the comment part, there
is the so-called COSTS BAR. which indicates the price you will have to pay each time you use
the activated icon. E. g. every time you use the bulldozer you will have to pay $1; zoning a plot
of land as residential costs $100.
In the centre of the comment part, at the right, you will see the FUNDS BAR which indicates
your remaining capital.
Now select the house icon moving the cursor (joystick or keyboard) and press the fire button.
Go back to the edit screen. Your pointer is now a larger square outline indicating how much
clear space you will need to create a residential zone (That's where the Sims live).

Pressing the fire button in clear terrain "zones" the land. The "R" in the centre of the zone
indicates that it is a residential zone. The flashing lightning symbol indicates that the zone has
no power and therefore cannot develop. All zones have imperatively to be powered, otherwise
they will remain at their original state.

Then select the commercial icon and place a commercial zone near your residential. There
will also be the flashing lightning in the zone. Here the Sims work, consume and build shops,
gas stations, office buildings, etc...

If there are trees, you can only place the zone after having cleared the terrain with the bulldozer,
unless you have actived the AUTO-BULLDOZE option from the OPTIONS menu. In this case
you will not have to bulldoze a forest before zoning.

Then select the industrial icon and map out an industrial zone next to a commercial zone.



Then you will need energy, or your zones will never develop. Point to the power plant icon. You
will notice that it is larger than the other zones. After having chosen between a nuclear power
plant at 5000$ and a coal power plant at 3000$ (same procedure as for selecting the difficulty
level at the start), place it in some open space near your residential zones. If your power plant
is not adjacent to a zone, you will have to run a power line from your power plant to the next zone.

To do this, click the power line icon. Using your joystick and fire button, lay power lines
from your power plant to your zones. Adjacent power line sections will automatically connect
themselves to one another.

In a moment, the flashing symbols will disappear, indicating that your zones have been
powered. Soon you will see small houses start to appear. The Sims have started to move in.

Note: When you zone land, you designate where building is allowed. It is the Sims who actually

Note that when you select the various icons, the icon description and its associated costs will
be displayed in the upper left-hand corner of the comment part. The funds bar at the right
displays your total funds available. If you do not have enough money in your treasury to pay
for a certain function, that icon will be "ghosted" on your screen and is unavailable for use.

Check that all the zones are powered. As soon as the zones begin to develop, you collect
taxes. This is done automatically.
For reminder, the money at your disposal is displayed in the COMMENT part (FUNDS), in the
centre at the right.

The bigger the city, the higher the land values, and the more taxes you will collect.
To accelerate the development, you will have to lay roads. Select the road icon again and add
roads from your residential housing to the commercial and industrial areas to allow the Sims
to commute to work. Once you have roads, traffic will be generated.

Roads and power lines cannot be laid one over the other, but they can cross each other at
right angles.



This is all the basic information you need to run SimCity, but we suggest reading on. The
following paragraphs explain in detail how to use each program function. We will also gives
some hints and tips for using the program.


Point with the cursor to the WINDOWS menu, and press the fire button, to display the menu.

A) The MAPS window


The MAPS WINDOW gives you various overviews of your city and terrains showing physical
or demographic details.

To select this mode, choose MAPS from the WINDOWS menu.

On the first third at the left side of the screen, you will see the different sub-options. On the
2 thirds at the right side you will see a portion of your city. The city is divided into 9 regions
overlapping on their edges. If you press the number keys on top of the keyboard, you will view
all the regions from 1 to 9. To change the region in the view, just press a number key.



The number corresponding to the region displayed appears in blue on white background, in
the small numeric keypad on top left of the screen.
Note: On Spectrum, to view the regions, press the CAPS SHIFT key and the number
First you view region 1. The sub-option selected is TRANSPT displaying your roads and rail
lines. Use this view to examine your city's access to specific areas and to plan future expansion
of the network. These options often show the dynamic balance of the city. The density key will
be shown in the lower left corner of the window. Depending on your monitor, this will either
be in colour or in shades. The colour on the bottom indicates the minimum density, growth or
value. If you want to select another sub-option, move the joystick downwards and other
information will appear automatically:


- CITY: shows all roads, developed zones and areas. Use this map to find non-developed areas
and plan the expansion of the zones.
- POLLUTN: shows levels of pollution throughout your city. The lighter the zones, the more they
are polluted. Do not forget to place the industrial zones far enough from residential ones and build



- POLICE: shows the effective radius of your police departments. The clear zones indicate a
maximum efficiency. These are zones where there is practically no crime. The longer the
distance between a zone and the next police department, the higher is the crime rate. Place
the police departments so that their action ranges join together, in order to protect your city.
- FIREDEP: fulfills the same function for the Ire departments. After disasters or fires a good
arrangement of the departments will turn out to be essential (do not forget to assign enough
money to the fire departments in your budget, otherwise they would not be effective).
- TRAFFIC: shows the amount of traffic on your maps. Spot traffic problems and determine
where new roadways and transit lines are needed.
- POWER: shows you the powered zones in white. This gives you a general state of
development of your power network and the city's needs.
- CRIME: shows the level and location of crime in your city. The white zones are seats with
a high crime rate. This way you can decide where to place precisely your next police

To exit the MAPS option, simply press the fire button.

B) The BUDGET window


In this BUDGET window you will assign the credits necessary for the police, fire and transport
departments. When your first taxes are collected in a new city, and each year after, this
window will appear (unless you select the Auto-Budget function). You will be asked to set the
funding levels for the fire, police, and transportation departments, and to set the property tax



You can raise and lower budget levels that correspond to each category and adjust your tax
rate. To do this, use the joystick or direction keys to highlight the category and press the fire
button. Increase the rate giving the direction UP (joystick or keyboard) or lower it with the
direction DOWN.
When you have fixed the various rates of the BUDGET, select "GO WITH THESE FIGURES"
and press the fire button, to exit the BUDGET WINDOW.

The level of budgeting requested by each department is based on the number of fire
departments, police stations, and the amount of roadways and transit lines in your city. These
figures increase as your city grows - it costs money to maintain your city infrastructure.

C) The EVALUATION window

The EVALUATION WINDOW gives you a performance rating.
PUBLIC OPINION data is presented in poll form, rating your overall job as mayor and listing
7 of the city's most pressing problems (crime, taxes, pollution, housing prices, traffic
unemployment, fires). The most important points are highlighted. This way, you are able to spot
the main preoccupations of your citizens.

You are advised to keep your residents happy or hey might migrate away, and you will be left
with a "ghost town."
To exit the Evaluation window, simply press the fire button.

Some example problem / solving strategies are:
- Crime: Build more police departments, or try to raise land values.
- Housing: Provide more residential zones.
- Unemployment: Build more industrial and commercial zones.
- Traffic: Possibly add more roads or mass transit.

STATISTICS on population, net migration, and assessed value are displayed, along with the
city game level and an overall city score. This data is calculated once a year at budget time.
Population shows how many people live in your city now; net migration shows how much
the population changed over the last year. Assessed value represents the net worth of all city-
owned property.




In order to develop your city, you will have to select between the various icons at your disposal,
those which represent your choice in matters of urbanism. Remind that you only define the
zones, the Sims actually decide to move in or not.

A) Description and utilization of the icons

To activate one of these icons, select the desired icon with the cursor, as already described,
and click. The name or explanation concerning each element will appear in the title bar.

KEYBOARD SHORTCUT COMMANDS: The number keys 1 to O select the icons from left to
right (from bulldozer to fire department) directly.
Note: On Spectrum, press the SYMBOL SHIFT key and the number simultaneously.

When you have selected an icon and moved to the edit screen, a pointer will appear on the
screen to show the location and the size of the chosen function. You cannot change the location
of the pointer. Use the cursor keys, as we have seen previously to make the screen scroll.
Use the fire button or space bar to activate the function.
If you try to place a zone, road, power line etc., over an already existing zone, road, power
line etc., a beep will indicate that this place is already occupied. You will have to choose another
place or use the bulldozer to clear the area.
NOTE: There are some exceptions to the rule above: the power lines and roads can cross
water and each other.

BULLDOZER clears trees and shrubbery, creates landfill along the water, levels developed,
existing zones and clears rubble caused by disaster. Bulldozing is also very efficient to fight
against fires.
It costs $1 to bulldoze a section of land.

ROADWAYS connect developed areas. Intersections and turns are automatically created.
Lay continuous roads by pessing the fire button and dragging your pointer. Be careful - if you
accidentally lay a road in the wrong place you will have to pay for bulldozing and rebuilding.



Roads may not be placed over trees, shrubbery, or zoned areas. They can cross over power
lines and transit lines only at right angles.
Laying roads across water creates a bridge. Bridges can only be built in a straight line - no
curves, turns or intersections. Shorelines must be bulldozed prior to building a bridge.
It costs $10 to lay one section of road and $50 to lay one section of bridge.

Note: to place a bridge, lay a section of road exactly on the shoreline, then lay another one over
water joining the road section on the shore. The bridge will be automatically extended to the other

POWER LINES carry power from power plants to zoned land and between zones. All developed
land needs power to function.
Power lines cannot cross trees, shrubbery, or zoned land. Power is conducted through
adjacent zones. Unpowered zones display the flashing power symbol. There is a delay
between the time you power up a zone and when the flashing light disappears. The delay grows
longer as the city grows larger.

Junctions and corners are automatically created. Poser lines across the water must be
horizontal or vertical - no turns, curves or intersections. Power lines consume some power due
to transmission inefficiencies.
It costs $5 to lay one piece of power line on land, $25 on water.
To lay a power line over water just proceed the same way as for the bridge.

TRANSIT LINES create a railway system for intra-city transit. Place tracks in heavily trafficked
areas to help alleviate congestion.
Intersections and turns are created automatically. Tracks laid under rivers will appear as
dashed lines. These underwater tunnels must be vertical or horizontal - no turns, curves of

Transit lines are maintained by transportation department funds. The level of funding affects the
efficiency of the system.
It costs $20 per section of track on land, $100 per section under water. To realize tunnels under
water, fellow the same procedure as for the bridges.



PARKS can be placed on clear land. Parks, forests and water raise the land value of
surrounding zones. Parks can be bulldozed as fire breaks or reserve space for later mass
transit expansion.
It costs $10 to lay one segment of park.

RESIDENTIAL ZONES are where the Sims build houses, appartments and community
facilities such as schools and churches.
Factors influencing residential value and growth are pollution, traffic density, population
density, surrounding terrain, roadway access, parks, and utilities.
It costs $100 to zone one plot of land as residential.

COMMERCIAL ZONES are used for many things, including retail stores, office buildings,
parking garages, and gas stations.
Factors influencing the value and growth of commercial areas include internal markets,
pollution, traffic density, residential access, labor supply, airports, transit access and utilities.
It cost $100 to zone one plot of land as commercial.

INDUSTRIAL ZONES are for heavy manufacturing and industrial services.
Factors influencing the growth of industrial areas are external markets, seaports, transit
access, residential access, labor supply and utilities.
It costs $100 to zone one plot of land as industrial.

POLICE DEPARTMENTS lower the crime rate in the surrounding area. This in turn raises
property values. Place these in high-density crime areas. The efficiency of a station depends on
the level of police department funding.
It costs $500 to build a police station.

FIRE DEPARTMENTS make surrounding areas less susceptible to fires. When fires do occur,
they are put out sooner and do less damage if a station is near. The effectiveness of fire
containment depends on the level of fire department funding.
It costs $500 to build a fire station.



STADIUMS encourage residential growth. The message window will indicate when the city
wants a stadium. You may build a stadium in you city prior to create a lot of traffic. Properly
maintaining a stadium requires a good road and transit network.
It coals $3000 to build a stadium.

POWER PLANTS can be coal or nuclear, chosen from a sub-menu provided when (after
selecting the power plant icon) you place the cursor on the desired option and press the fire
button to confirm.

The nuclear plant is more powerful but carries a slight risk of meltdown. The coal plant is less
expensive, but less powerful and it pollutes.
All zoned terrains need energy to develop and grow. When developed zones lack of energy,
they progressively return to bare ground, unless they are powered up again.

According to the size of your city, you have to build several power plants. We recommend
you, build two or three power plants more than needed, to support the power supply in case
of emergency.
Coal power plants cost $3000 to build. Nuclear power plants cost $5000.

SEAPORTS increase the potential for industrial growth. They have little effect in a small city,
but contribute a lot to industrialization in a large city.
Seaports should be placed on a shoreline. The shoreline must be bulldozed prior to zoning a
It costs $5000 to zone land for use as a seaport

AIRPORTS increase the growth potential of your commercial markets. Once a city starts
getting large, commercial growth will level off without an airport.
Airports are large and expensive and should not be built unless your city can afford one. Once
you build an airport you will see airplanes flying above you city to and from the airport.
It costs $10,000 to zone land for use as an airport.




A) Description and utilization of the commands

- ABOUT SIMCITY: gives you some additional information about SimCity.

- START NEW CITY: generates a new, empty terrain to start a new city different from the
one you are simulating. You will be asked to confirm (Yes, Please) or refuse (No, thanks).
- USE OLD LANDSCAPE: the command allows you to start a new city from the ground with
the same terrain, that you have previously used. This way, you are given a new chance on an
exactly similar terrain under the same conditions.
- INPUT NEW GENE: this option allows you to predefine the general form of your terrain. Each
landscape is chosen between 65 535 different possibilities. If you liked the type of your
previous terrains and select its GENE number (for Generation) again, you will get exactly the
same terrain. However, you won't find your ancient buildings or creations. The terrain will be
absolutely clear.

Procedure: After having selected the option INPUT NEW GENE, you will see that the figures
standing for the current landscape GENE number turn to green. Type in 5 figures for the new
GENE number. Press RETURN to confirm.

Then you will return to the menu proposing INPUT NEW GENE and START CITY WITH NEW
GENE. Now select START CITY WITH NEW GENE. Before you start playing on this terrain,
you will be asked to select a difficulty level as seen before.

START CITY WITH THIS GENE: this command allows you to play again on a clear terrain,
with the same GENE number as displayed in "Current Landscape Gene". That means you
use the same terrain as in the previous game, unless you have already changed the number
using the "Input New GENE" option.
Otherwise, if you use this function directly, this will avoid entering a new GENE number, and
restart on a randomly generated terrain among 65 635 possibilities, as it would be the case for
START NEW city. Moreover you will know in advance the general type of your landscape.



[file menu]

- LOAD CITY: To load a previously saved city, you select this option. Choose a city to play
again with, using the joystick (UP/DOWN) and press the fire button or space bar to load this city.
If there is no city saved on your disk, you are given the choice between "LEAVE" (to return to
the edit screen) and "FORMAT DISK", to initialize a disk, so that it is able to receive city data.
Beware not to format your original.

[disk files menu]

If you just want to see what cities you have already saved, select CATALOGUE DISK. You
are not able to load a city with this command. If there is no city saved on your disk, the program
will offer you the same possibilities as for LOAD CITY with LEAVE and FORMAT DISK.
There again, beware not to format your original.



- SAVE CITY saves any city-in-progress to disk for later use. Once you have selected this
option, you will have to enter the name under which you want to save the city. Type the city's
name and press Return.
Don't forget to save your cities on a disk with the special SimCity format with the command SIM
Do not try to save on oher disks, especially the program disk.
Take care not to save two cities with the same name. The new one will be saved, erasing the
ancient one.
Beware not to switch off the computer or the disk drive, neither remove the disk before the
saving is achieved. The city to be saved would be lost.
If you want to save a city at several development states or a terrain with various strategies, use
different names for every city or terrain version.
If you activate SAVE accidentally or change your mind, press Return without entering the
name. This will cancel the SAVE operation.
- SIM FORMAT disk: as we have seen previously, this commands allows you to format a blank
disk in order to support your new cities.
- EXIT SIMCITY: ends SimCity. You will be asked to confirm your choice.
- EXIT MENU: allows you to return to the edit screen and close the SYSTEM menu.


This menu allows you to enable or disable certain minor tasks of the simulation.

A) Description and utilization of the commands

To activate or disactivate these options, highlight the name of the option and press the space
bar. Depending on its previous state, the option will be switched on or off, and you exit the menu.
A checkmark to the left of an item indicates that the option is active.

AUTO-BULLDOZER: allows you to place zones, roadways, etc., directly on top of trees and
shorelines wilhout manually bulldozing first. You will be charged the same as for manual
bulldozing. This option is active at the beginning of the game.



AUTO-BUDGET: avoids the budget window popping up every year and you to approve it.
When the option is activated, it keeps your budget at the same percentage settings, the fire,
police and transportation department fundings included.

SOUND: switches the various city sounds off and on. If there is a check mark, there will be
no sound.

ZONE DEMOLISH WAIT: When switched on, this option will prevent you from destroying
thoughtlessly your constructions by impatience or bad manipulation of the Bulldoze option.
This way, you will have to move the cursor on the centre of the zone to be demolished, and
press the fire button for some time so that the destruction command will be effective.

SIMULATION SPEED: when selected, you will be given four possibilities which are FAST,
NORMAL, SLOW and PAUSED (time a stopped, but you may build and zone all the same).
A star indicates which speed is selected. The game starts with NORMAL speed. To change
the speed, move the joystick up or down to highlight the desired option. Confirm pressing the
Space bar or Fire button. You return automatically to the edit screen.

EXIT MENU returns you to the edit screen.


A) Description and utilization of the commands

The disasters menu allows you to activate disasters within the city limits. Use the disasters
to test your capabilities facing emergency situations.
BEWARE: it would be wise to save the current city before launching a disaster; you can never
Use the cursor key to select a disaster. Press the Return key or the joystick button to activate
the disaster.

FIRES: fire spreads fairly rapidly through forests and buildings, somewhat slower over
roadways and transit lines. Fire will not cross water or clear terrain. Fire will let only ruins and
rubble that have to be bulldozed prior to rebuilding.



Since fire will not spread across clear terrain, you can build fire breaks with the bulldozer. Just
surround the fire with clear areas and it will stop spreading and eventually burn itself out. Note:
You cannot directly bulldoze a fire.
Fires can be also caused by earthquakes.

FLOODS: occur near the water. They gradually spread and destroy buildings and utilities. After
a while the flood waters recede, leaving behind cleared terrain. Avoid placing power plants,
airports and stadiums near the shore. The least flood may destroy them definitely.

EARTHQUAKES: are the most devastating disaster. This is a MAJOR earthquake - between
8.0 and 9.0 on the Richter Scale. It will destroy buildings and start fires.
When an earthquake occurs, you will see the edit window shake for a while. When it stops, you
will have to take charge and control the scattered fires.

AIR CRASHES: When a crash occurs, a fire will start, unless the crash is on water. A good
strategy is to locate the airport away from the central city to minimize the fire damage. Air
crashes can happen without being activated from the menu, if you have an operational airport.

TORNADOES: can occur anywhere on the map. Very fast and unpredictable, they can appear
and disappear at a moment's notice. They can last quite long and you cannot stop it. A good
strategy consists in following the tornado in a reasonable distance, and try to keep a maximum
of zones powered.

NUCLEAR MELTDOWNS: are only possible if you are using a nuclear power plant. If you
activate a meltdown, your nuclear plant will explode into flames. Radioactivity will prevent the
irradiated zone to develop. All you can do is concentrate on another place to develop your city
and wait for the radioactivity decreasing (at least 100 years).

DISABLE ALL: This command allows you to play without the impending disasters. Indeed,
as time passes, disasters will regularly strike your city without being activated from the disasters
menu. Choose this option, if you want your city to develop in peace and calm.

EXIT MENU returns you to the edit screen.




A) Description

During city life you will receive messages from the simulation program, to inform and forewarn
you. They appear in the comment part.
Moat of these messages are easy to understand, but others need some further explanation:
"FIRE DEPT NEEDS FUNDS": you have not supplied 100% of the fundings needed by the fire
department to function correctly. Restore the situation or your fire department will not be
effective enough.
"THE POLICE NEEDS FUNDS": The same thing is also valid for the police departments. If
you do not react quickly enough, crime will develop dangerously in the city.
"TRANSPORT SYSTEM FALLING APART": There are not enough funds to maintain the
roads. They fall into disrepair. React quickly.
"CITIZENS UPSET, TAXES TOO HIGH": You have set the local taxes too high. Your citizens
are angry and begin to leave the city.
"NEED LARGER RAIL SYSTEM": you have to improve your transit lines and transport
system in general.
"CITIZENS DEMAND A STADIUM": means that your citizens want to have fun assisting to
sporting events.
"CITIZENS DEMAND A POLICE DEPARTMENT": the crime rate increases and the citizens
feel not in secure anymore.
"CITIZENS DEMAND A FIRE DEPARTMENT": expresses the wish of the citizens for a fire
department to prevent and fight eventual fires.


Using the disk:
The SimCity program disk is protected against copying. To make it last as long as possible,
use it only to load the simulation, then remove it and use other disks to store your city data.

It is advisable to make several copies of the city data disks.



Saving cities and terrains:
Take care not to save two cities with the same name. The new one would erase the first one.

If you want a city to be saved at different states, or if you want to try several planning strategies,
save each version with a different name.

When you like a randomly generated terrain or if you have conceived a good terrain, and maybe
you will like to try different approaches on it, you can save the terrain without any building. When
you build on it, save the new city with another name than the one with the clear terrain, otherwise
you would lose the latter.

As you start a new city with limited funds ($5000 to $20,000), you will have to plan and establish
a strict budget. A power plant should be a priority, for there can be nor growth nor income

Develop a city:
Refer to the CITY DYNAMICS CHART which explains how the factors concerning growth and
development are bound.

The main points to remember in order to make a city thrive:

All the zones have to be powered to develop.

The zones have to be developed to collect the taxes.

The roads must give access from and to every zone so that it can develop completely.

The airports and sea ports will not help a little town to develop - so spare the money until your
city is large enough.

Place the zones, roads, etc. wisely - you cannot move them and will have to pay to bulldoze
and rebuild them.



As a rule of thumb, the number of industrial and commercial zones should approximately be
equal. The number of residential zones should roughly equal the sum of industrial and
commercial zones.

The proximity to forest and water rises the land value of the terrain and therefore the taxes

Additional power plants and redundant power lines are expensive, but can maintain a zone
powered during a disaster.

A larger, more populated city is not necessarily a better city. A self-sufficient city with a
pleasant environment is better than a gigantic city without trees and shores, showing a
permanent deficit.

Use the MAP options from the WINDOWS menu to plan the growth of the city, spot the problems
and visualize your progress.
Save your city to disk before trying a new policy in order to reconsider the situation if it fails.


Many factors influence the chance of your city's prospering or floundering; both internal
factors (the structure and efficiency of your city) and external factors (the regional economy,
disasters, etc).


Your city is divided into three primary zones: residential, commercial and industrial. These
zones symbolize the three basic pillars upon which a city is based: population, industry, and
commerce. All three are necessary for your city to grow and thrive.

RESIDENTIAL ZONES are where the Sims live. Here they build houses, apartments and
community facilities such as churches and schools. Sims are the workforce for your city's
commercial and industrial zones.



INDUSTRIAL ZONES are used to site warehouses, factories, and other unsightly and
polluting structures which have a negative impact on surrounding zones. One of the major
goals of planning is to separate these "nuisance" from the areas where people live. In this
simulation, industrial zones represent the "basic" production of your city. Things produced
here are sold outside the city to an "external market", bringing money into the city for future

COMMERCIAL ZONES represent the retail stores and services in your city, including gas
stations, grocery stores, banks and offices. commercial areas are mainly dedicated to
producing goods and services needed within your city. This is called "non-basic" production
or production for the "internal market."


The major factors controlling residential population are birthrate, availability of jobs and
housing, unemployment, and quality of life within the city.

Birthrate as used here is actually a combination of the birthrate (+) and the deathrate (-). Within
SimCity there is always a positive birthrate.

Availability of jobs (the employment rate) is a ratio of the current commercial and industrial
populations to the total residential population. As a rule of thumb, the number of commercial and
industrial zones together should roughly equal the number of residential zones.

If there are more jobs in your city than residents, new settlers will be attracted. If the job market
declines during a local recession, your people will migrate away in search of jobs.

Housing for your residents is built in the residential zones. These zones must be powered and
connected to the places of employment with a road and/or rail network. The structures built
in residential zones are influenced by land value and population density.

Quality of life is a measure of relative "attractiveness" assigned to different zone locations.
It is affected by negative factors such as pollution and crime, and positive factors such as parks
and accessibility.




There are thousands of variables that influence your city. All these variables can be influenced
by your actions with the exception of one.

The external market (the economic conditions that exist outside of your city) is controlled by
the simulation - there is nothing you can do to change it. In many ways, this external market
is the original source of all city growth. Towns frequently begin as production centres (steel
towns, refineries, etc.) that service a demand in the surrounding region. As time passes, the
external market grows to reflect the regional growth going on around your city.

The industry in your city will attempt to grow as the external market grows. For this to happen,
there must be room for expansion (more industrial zones) and an adequate labor supply (more
residential zones).


The internal market is completely influenced by the conditions within your city. Internal
production, created in the commercial zones, represents all the things which are purchased and
consumed within the city. Food stores, gas stations, retail stores, financial services, medical
care, etc. - all depend on a nearby population to service. Within SimCity, the size of the internal
market determines the rate at which commercial zones will prosper. Commercial zones need
enough zoned land to build on and an existent, sufficient workforce to employ. The structures
built in commercial zones are mainly influenced by land value and population density.

Commercial zones grow and develop to serve the expanding internal market. Commercial
growth will usually be slow at first, when the population is small and needs very little. As your
city grows, commercial growth will accelerate and the internal market will become a much larger
consumer of your total city production.

This accelerating effect, when the external/industrial production is overtaken by the
accelerating internal/commercial sector, can turn a sleepy little town of 50,000 into a thriving
capital of 200,000 in a few short years.



The tax rate you set controls the amount of income generated by your city. As taxes are
collected each year (city time), the BUDGET WINDOW will appear, giving you the fiscal details
of your city and a chance to adjust rates.

The simulation determines the amount of revenue collected by assessing each zone an
amount based on its land value, current level of development and the current tax rate.

The tax rate has a global affect on your city's growth rate. If you set it low (0-4%), growth will
be brisk but the city income will be low. If you set it high (10-20%), you will collect a lot in the
short run but in the long run tax income will decrease along with the population. You must keep
tax income high enough to meet city maintenance costs and invest in new development, but
low enough not to scare off residents and businesses. A high tax rate is one way to control
city growth, should you want to experiment with "growth control measures."

City budgeting affects the way your city grows. City infrastructure cost is represented by three
departments: police, fire and transportation. You may set the funding levels separately for each.
All three departments will request a certain level of funding each year. You may supply all or part
of the requested funds, in the attempt to balance safety needs and budgetary concerns.

Police stations lower the crime rate within a territory. The effective radius of your police station
is related to the amount of funding allocated to the police department. There is a positive
correlation between the value of land and proximity to a police station. Police Stations cost
$100 per year to fund.

Fire departments prevent and extinguish fires. The level of funding determines the effective
radius of a fire department. Fire departments put out fires within this radius much sooner than
outside it, and decrease the chance that they will start in the first place. Fire Departments cost
$100 per year to fund.



When you build roads and rail systems you are charged for construction and yearly mainte-
nance. The larger your transportation network, the more it will cost for upkeep. If you decide
not to or are unable to pay this maintenance cost, roads will slowly deteriorate and become
unusable. The maintainance cost for each piece is: Road - $1, Bridge - $4, Rail - $4, Rail tunnel
- $10.


Electrical power makes modern cities possible. Efficient and reliable power transmission to
all zones is the goal of good "power management."

Periodically in the simulation the entire power grid of your city is checked for links to power.
If a zone is connected (by other zones or power lines) to a power plant, the zone is considered
powered (unless the power plant is overloaded).

Zones must be powered for development to occur. Many things (such as fires, floods,
monsters and bulldozers) can knock down power lines and cause blackouts in parts of your
city. Development will stop in unpowered zones, and if power is not quickly restored, the zone
will decline back to its original state of emptiness.
Redundant power connections can make your power grid more reliable, but running more lines
adds construction costs and transmission line loss.


One of the most most important elements of city structure is the transportation network.
It moves Sims and goods throughout your city. Roads typically occupy as much as 25% - 40%
of the land in urban areas. Traffic along these roads indicates which sections of your road
system are used the most.

Traffic levels are simulated by a process known as "Trip Generation." Over time, each
populated zone in the city will generate a number of trips, depending on the population. Each
generated trip starts at the origin zone, travels down the road/rail network, and if a "proper
destination" is reached, ends at the destination zone - otherwise, the trip fails. Trip failure
indicates inaccessibility of a zone and limits its growth.



The majority of generated trips represent people commuting to and from work. Additional traffic
is generated by residents traveling to shopping, recreation, etc.

Each road has a limited capacity for traffic. When this capacity is exceeded, traffic jams
will form. Traffic jams drastically lower the capacity of a road, compounding the problem and
frustrating drivers.

Traffic conditions fluctuate quickly, responding to things such as open bridges, sporting events
and port activity. Avoid traffic problems by providing several routes for the traffic to take, and
building rail systems when you can afford to.


Pollution levels are tracked in all areas of your city. This is a general "nuisance level" which
includes air and water pollution, noise pollution, toxic wastes, etc. Pollution has a negative
impact on the growth of residential areas.

The primary cause of pollution is industrialized zones. The level of pollution created by an
industrial zone increases with its level of growth.

Traffic is another cause of pollution. As your city gets large you may notice periodic smog
generated from automotive commutes. Fires, Seaports, Airports, and Coal Power Plants also

There are limited means of combating the pollution level. Lowering traffic density, limiting
industrial development, and separating the pollution from the residential areas will help.

Crime rates are influenced by population density, local law enforcement, and land values. As
population density increases in an area, the number of crimes committed increases. Crime will
also increase in areas of low land value.
The most effective way to deal with high crime rates is to introduce a police station into the
area. Based on its level of funding, the police station will reduce the rate of crime in its sphere
of influence. A long-term approach to lowering crime is to raise the land value of the area.
One way to do this is to demolish and rezone (urban renewal).




Land value is one of the most fundamental aspects of urban structure. The land value of an
area affects how that area is used. In this simulation the land value of an area is based on
terrain, accessibility, crime, pollution, and distance to downtown. The farther the residents have
to go to work, the lower the land value where they live, due in part to transportations costs.
The value of commercial zones depends greatly on accessibility by the populace.

Land value is also affected by surrounding terrain. If land is closer to water, trees, or parks,
its value will rise. Creative placement of zones within the terrain, with little bulldozing, can make
good use of this natural advantage.

Land value and crime rate have a feedback effect on each other. Lower land values cause crime
rates to rise. Higher crime rates cause land values to drop, and can cause "transition areas"
near your central city to rapidly decline in value.


What is the good city? We are unlikely to arrive at an unequivocal answer; the diversity of human
needs and tastes frustrates all attempts to provide recipes or instruction manuals for the building
of cities. However, we can identify the crucial dimensions of city performance, and specify the
many ways in which cities can achieve success along these dimensions.

A useful guide in this enterprise is Kevin Lynch's A theory of Good City Form (Cambridge, Mass.
MIT Press, 1981). Lynch offers five basic dimensions of city performance: vitality, sense, fit,
access, and control. To these he adds two "meta-criteria", efficiency and justice.

For Lynch, a vital city successfullly fulfills the biological needs of its inhabitants, and provides
a safe environment for their activities. A sensible city is organized so that its residents can
perceive and understand the city's form and function. A city with good fit provides the buildings,
spaces, and networks required for its residents to pursue their projects successfully.



An accessible city allows people of all ages and backgrounds to gain from the activities,
resources, services, and information that they need. A city with good control is arranged so
that its citizens have a say in the management of the spaces in which they work and reside.

Finally an efficient city achieves the goals listed above at the least cost, and balances the
achievement of the goals with one another. They cannot all be maximized at the same time.
And a just city distributes benefits among its citizens according to some fair standard. Clearly,
these two meta-criteria raise difficult issues which will continue to spark debates for the
foreseeable future.

The criteria tell aspiring city builders where to aim, while acknowledging the diverse ways of
achieving good city form. Cities are endlessly fascinating because each is unique, the product
of decades, centuries, or even millennia of historical evolution. As we walk through city streets,
we walk through time, encountering the city-building legacy of past generations. Paris,
Venice, Rome, New York, Chicago, San Francisco - each has its glories and its failures. In
theory, we should be able to learn the lessons of history and build cities that our descendants
will admire and wish to preserve. That remains a constant challenge for all who undertake
the task of city planning.







[The above picture may apply to the Amstrad version of Sim City, but the Spectrum version uses the graphics below. -imc]
Zone evolution chart