Ever since we’ve learnt that Maxis were making a new SimCity game, we’ve been desperate to get our hands on some gameplay details. In a recent interview with Game Informer, the development team has revealed how the reboot will compare to past installments of the franchise.

First, Maxis discussed graphics:

…[SimCity has] to deliver on the graphics and a deep simulation.  GlassBox is the simulation engine that is powering this SimCity and will allow us to create a city simulation that is deep and responsive. It scales to simulate entire cities, regions of cities, and allows us to connect cities through global data that we push to all of our players. It allows us to track every Sim in your city, follow them to work, to school, to play.  We want to make sure our graphics tell the story of the simulation, so that art serves the simulation.  If a Sim is sick, you’ll see it.  If your water is dirty, you’ll see it.  What You See Is What You Sim.

On pleasing veterans of the franchise:

We wanted to move away from some of the complexities of SimCity 4 and bring back the charm and magic of SimCity 2000. We looked at reinventing every feature from a tactile interface to presenting data in a more visual manner. It’s very much a reboot of the franchise.

[…]We wanted to preserve what was great about the gameplay of previous SimCitys and still improve and innovate as much as possible.

The dev team continued to highlight a couple of the changes that the new SimCity will bring:

In this version, players will have only one zone type for Residential, Commercial, and Industrial. Density will be driven by the types of roads and general traffic around these zones.

[…]We’ve introduced depletable resources to the simulation, which will fuel big business and help drive and influence the economic centers of player’s cities. We felt that resources are an important component of the economic loop for real cities, that it was an obvious and important addition to SimCity. These resources include water, coal, oil, and ore. Sims are directly impacted by these resources by the jobs these industries produce, the products they make, and the impacts to the environment. Players will have the ability to decide which resources to use to help shape their cities and how to manage their city when those resources are no longer available.

Game Informer’s interview also told us more about the multiplayer mode:

Cities are now part of something bigger; they are part of a region, which consists of other cities and Great Works. Cities influence one another and work together to build Great Works, compete on leaderboards, and connect with one another to trade. One example of a Great Work could be a solar farm. Players will want a Solar Farm in their region because it’s an excellent source of clean power and jobs. In order to build the Solar Farm, you’ll need several cities contributing to the project to provide materials, workers, and funds. The Solar Farm is just one example of how the region that your city is part of adds additional pressures and decisions to your city planning.

You can read the full interview over at Game Informer, and watch the announcement trailer here.

SimCity will be released on PC and Mac in 2013.

What do you make of the addition of depletable resources? What other changes from SimCity 4 would you like to see? Comment below!

Maisie Williams freaks out over ‘Game of Thrones’ season 7 scripts

"Nothing will prepare you for this."

7:45 pm EDT, August 22, 2016

Maisie Williams finished reading the scripts for Game of Thrones season 7, and totally lost her sh*t on Twitter.

Williams, who plays Arya Stark, is no stranger to shocking moments on the HBO epic fantasy series. But it seems like the events of Game of Thrones‘ penultimate season are so intense, even the seasoned young actress is left flabbergasted.

Earlier this evening, Williams summarized her experience of reading the Game of Thrones season 7 scripts on her Twitter feed. Suffice to say, the stream reads something like a thrillingly ominous preview of what fans will experience when the show returns next year.

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Maisie Williams finished reading the scripts for Game of Thrones season 7, and totally lost her sh*t on Twitter.

Williams, who plays Arya Stark, is no stranger to shocking moments on the HBO epic fantasy series. But it seems like the events of Game of Thrones‘ penultimate season are so intense, even the seasoned young actress is left flabbergasted.

Earlier this evening, Williams summarized her experience of reading the Game of Thrones season 7 scripts on her Twitter feed. Suffice to say, the stream reads something like a thrillingly ominous preview of what fans will experience when the show returns next year.

At first, Williams warned fans to steel themselves for the epic events to come.

…but apparently, no amount of mental toughness will be enough for season 7.

To summarize, Game of Thrones fans the world over are now sizzlingly jealous of Maisie Williams… and also, apparently, well and truly screwed.

With George R.R. Martin’s next installment in A Song of Ice and Fire still achingly absent, there’s almost no way to predict the major events of Game of Thrones season 7. Our only theory is that we should probably say goodbye to the feelings we managed to resuscitate after Jon Snow came back to life.

Williams isn’t the only member of the cast hinting at madness to come. Maisie’s on-screen sister Sophie Turner revealed that she too had advance knowledge while pondering Sansa’s future.

“I’ve actually just got the scripts for seven,” Turner tells Variety. “So I don’t want to say too much, because I’ll probably end up slipping some truths out!”

Seven forbid, Sophie. Seven forbid.

Game of Thrones season 7 will air some time in 2017, but not soon enough.

What madness do you think ‘Game of Thrones’ season 7 has in store?

Netflix adapting ‘Anne of Green Gables’ for new TV series with additional themes

Anne Shirley is returning to our screens!

2:45 pm EDT, August 22, 2016

L.M. Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables book series is being adapted for television by Netflix and Canadian network CBC.

The new series will begin filming next month in Ontario, Canada. Though CBC will be airing it in America’s neighbor to the north, Netflix will be distributing it in the United States and the rest of the world.

Breaking Bad writer and producer Moira Walley-Beckett is penning the entire eight-episode series and will run the show. It is expected to air on the CBC in 2017, and presumably it’ll run on Netflix around the same.

Read full article

L.M. Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables book series is being adapted for television by Netflix and Canadian network CBC.

The new series will begin filming next month in Ontario, Canada. Though CBC will be airing it in America’s neighbor to the north, Netflix will be distributing it in the United States and the rest of the world.

Breaking Bad writer and producer Moira Walley-Beckett is penning the entire eight-episode series and will run the show. It is expected to air on the CBC in 2017, and presumably it’ll run on Netflix around the same.

The eight-book Anne of Green Gables series has been adapted numerous times over the years (including the well-known, two-part 1985 televised miniseries), but this will arguably be the biggest adaptation to date thanks to the potential audience Netflix could pull in.

anne-of-green-gables-book

According to Deadline, “the coming-of-age series will focus on a young girl who, after an abusive childhood spent in orphanages and the homes of strangers, is mistakenly sent to live with an elderly spinster and her aging brother. Over time — and thanks to her unique spirit, fierce intellect and brilliant imagination — 13-year-old Anne will transform their lives and eventually the small town in which they live.”

The new adaptation “will honor the foundation of the book, but will incorporate new adventures reflecting themes of identity, sexism, bullying, prejudice, and trusting one’s self.”

The series will be set in 1890. The first book was published in 1908 by Lucy Maud Montgomery and has gone on to sell over 50 million copies worldwide.

Will you watch Netflix’s ‘Anne of Green Gables’ series?

If you’ve ever been interested in reading the series, now’s a great time to start!

Not only is J.K. Rowling a brilliant writer, but she’s also a talented sketch artist!

Pottermore recently released a few never-before-seen Harry Potter sketches by J.K. Rowling on their website. The drawings arrived without fanfare — they were quietly added to a few sections sometime in recent weeks.

The three brand new Harry Potter sketches by J.K. Rowling depict Quidditch, Peeves causing trouble, and Snape teaching a Potions class.

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Not only is J.K. Rowling a brilliant writer, but she’s also a talented sketch artist!

Pottermore recently released a few never-before-seen Harry Potter sketches by J.K. Rowling on their website. The drawings arrived without fanfare — they were quietly added to a few sections sometime in recent weeks.

The three brand new Harry Potter sketches by J.K. Rowling depict Quidditch, Peeves causing trouble, and Snape teaching a Potions class.

The Quidditch sketch is particularly interesting, because Rowling seems to be explaining the game in a single sketch. As you can see, the drawing labels each player and what each of them is up to during the game:

JKR_Quidditch_illustration-768x794-1

In the second sketch, Peeves appears to be holding a bunch of walking canes as Professor McGonagall, Harry, Ron, Hermione, and a couple of other students gawk at him:

JKR_Peeves_and_Percy_illustration

In the third, Professor Snape oversees a Potions class:

JKR_Severus_Snape_illustration-768x781

But that’s not all! A few previously-released J.K. Rowling sketches have also appeared on Pottermore in recent weeks. These depict Harry at Privet Drive, the Weasleys, Harry in front of the Mirror of Erised, and Dumbledore, McGonagall, and Hagrid meeting Baby Harry.

As far as we know, it’s the first time any of these are getting an official digital release (They’ve previously appeared in videos and other promotional pieces):

JKR_outside_Privet_Drive_illustration-768x853

JKR_Weasleys_illustration

JKR_Harry_and_the_Dursleys_illustration-768x929

JKR_Mirror_of_Erised_illustration-768x892

Which Harry Potter sketch by J.K. Rowling is your favorite?

We wonder if any of these will be appearing in the new, Encyclopedia-like Harry Potter eBooks in a couple of weeks?

Thanks to the sharp eyes at The Rowling Library for the tip!