The final game we saw in our four-game Paradox GamesCom 2012 marathon was Cities in Motion 2, presented to us by Chief Executive Office of Colossal Order Ltd, Mariina Hallikainen. In this presentation we were given a brief overview of what we can expect from the developer’s mass transit simulator sequel.
Like its predecessor, Cities in Motion 2 tasks the player with managing the strained public transport system of a bustling urban metropolis; adapting and expanding along with the growth of the city, the change in passenger requirements and specific events that crop up from time to time.
New to this version is the increased simulated day length, which has been stretched to 24 minutes to allow the player to introduce a proper transport timetabling system. This also allows for full day and night cycles and introduces concepts such as rush hour traffic into the mix as factors that must be considered for efficient transport management.
Another new factor is the way dynamic expansions to the city are handled. In Cities in Motion 2 the player has the option to manually build and expand upon the roads system to either adapt to the needs of a changing city, or to watch the city itself adapt to an expanded transport network. Various types of road tiles are available for different purposes, from main roads to bus only lanes.
Dynamic events such as concerts or traffic accidents have been introduced, requiring the player to adapt their network either in anticipation of a changed and increased demand or in reaction to a sudden change in circumstances.
As is fitting for a game appealing to transport enthusiasts, a large range of vehicles will be available for player use and these will be spread across the three categories of buses, trams and trains. Buses are the cheapest to provide while trams and trains require expensive infrastructure development to implement. Trains can even be built on city spanning bridge networks or through an underground tunnel system, although the associated costs will significantly rise.
When considering the development of the transport network, the desires and requirements of different social groups must be accounted for; groups such as students are focused on cheap transport regardless of quality, whereas high-flying businessmen will pay to get to work quickly regardless of the costs.
New cosmetic improvements also have been introduced, such as transport depots where players see newly bought vehicles emerging from as they move into their new routes; rather than having them simply popping into existence on the network.
Although our time with the game was limited to an overview of single-player gameplay only, Colossal Order announced to us that they plan to introduce both competitive and cooperative multiplayer modes into the final retail release.
Cities in Motion 2 has been scheduled for a Q2 release in 2013 and the improvements made on the original will no doubt be of interest to fans of the first game as well and those with an interest in management sims in general.