So, are you bored yet of all the samey samey buildings in Cities: Skylines? Have you found anything frustrating in managing traffic flow? You’re in luck. Colossal Order made it quite clear in development that Cities: Skylines would be mod friendly, and using Steam Workshop, literally thousands of changes and additions have arrived already.
Some of the changes are minor tweaks, of course, but there are lots of truly worthy mods and assets to add to your game.
The best place to start, I think, is to have a browse through all the new assets, like buildings and variations on ploppable infrastructure. One of my favourites is the Recycling Centre, which is basically a rubbish incinerator, but without the pollution. Oh, and it has double the capacity too!
There are also new train and metro stations, which are really funky. Some even have other abilities, like reduced noise pollution, which is useful in your residential neighbourhoods. Others have reduced costs, or just look the goods, compared to the more generic designs that come with the game.
But I like variety in the buildings that grow, and that’s definitely something that Simcity did well, with colour and variation in heights. Skyscrapers really were skyscrapers in Simcity, and the taller growable buildings in Cities: Skylines are a little disappointing on that front. Nonetheless, you can find lots of new buildings, including ladmarks, on the Workshop. Less repetitive buildings can really add to the atmosphere of your city, especially CBD areas.
One of the most disappointing things in the vanilla game are the airports. Actually, they’re quite hard to handle in city building games, because of the sheer scale of them. Given that currently the equivalent of an Airbus A380 lands on a runway of about 200 metres in length, there are hopefully plans to make them just a bit more realistic. Thankfully, there are loads of assets and ploppables that can help you build that fancy airport of your dreams.
It goes without saying that traffic is the most difficult thing to manage in this kind of game. In fact, many mods deal with traffic, such as the Traffic Manager Mod. This mod lets you modify all your intersections, by adding or removing traffic lights, changing the lane configurations, and even adding in time based traffic control. This is really an essential addition if you have an expansive city.
The other thing is public transport. Sadly, the interface for managing lines is…obtuse…to say the least of it. There are two really helpful mods, Auto Line Colours, which changes the bus or train line’s representative colour upon successful creation of the line.
Extended Public Transport UI is also very useful, and can help you manage your transport lines with numbering and naming. You can also easily change the line colour manually.
Finally, just for a bit of fun, there’s a first person camera mod, which lets you essentially walk around your city at ground level (or whatever level you like). Essentially, it unlocks the camera and gives you proper freelook ability. The other thing it can do is let you ride on a vehicle that happens to be in your city. Planes, buses, trains or even people. The only thing you can’t ride on is a metro train, but then again, that’d be kind of boring.
So there you are folks, some ideas to help with your next city building project!