A leaked memo has been circulating around the net from Lucy Bradshaw. It outlines a lot of the efforts, successes and failures resulting from the launch of SimCity.
“I’ll start by saying that I couldn’t be more proud of SimCity and the Maxis team that made it and are supporting it,” Maxis general manager Lucy Bradshaw wrote in an email sent to staffers at the studio. “The game launched with great reviews from both new critics and the veterans who have loved this franchise for so many years. SimCity is a software achievement that everyone at Maxis is extremely proud of. I am also thankful for all of the hard work put in by our marketing, EA Global Publishing and Origin teams, which drove very strong Day One performance around world.
“Then we launched it.”
While Bradshaw pointed out that more than 700,000 cities were built by players in the first 24 hours, she also noted that many gamers are “experiencing server instability and consequently, the rollout in North America has been challenging. It’s also now evident that players across Europe and Asia are experiencing the same frustration.”
Maxis’ top priority, she said, is to “quickly and dramatically increase the number and stability of our servers and with that, the number of players who can simultaneously access the game.”
Three servers were added to the game yesterday and several more are planned for the weekend, she wrote.
“I’D LIKE TO SAY THAT IT’S NOT FAIR — THAT THE GAME SCORE SHOULDN’T BE PUNISHED FOR A SERVER PROBLEM. BUT IT IS FAIR”
Bradshaw also detailed the company’s efforts to address the growing tide of hostility among their fanbase.
“Maxis is working 24/7 to deliver on our promise,” she said.
Bradshaw noted that the server issues are also impacting review scores, saying that the Maxis Communications team is “working one-on-one with media to manage this as closely as possible.”
“I’d like to say that it’s not fair — that the game score shouldn’t be punished for a server problem,” she wrote. “But it is fair.”
“SimCity is an online game and critics and consumers have every right to expect a smooth experience from beginning to end,” she wrote. “I and the Maxis team take full responsibility to deliver on our promise.
“Trust that we’re working as hard as possible to make sure everyone gets to experience the amazing game we built in SimCity.”