Simulation Games


You ask, “A comeback? But simulation games are still popular.” Before I continue, clarify what I mean when I say “simulation games.” I’m not referring to Age of Empires, Civilization, or Total War, which are real-time strategy (RTS) games. Sports games are also excluded even though they are undoubtedly simulation games because EA has that genre well-covered. I’m talking about simulation games for vehicles, life, and building and management (CMS).

I’ll bring you back now. Rewind to a period when we visited GameStop, Best Buy, or GAME to purchase the most recent releases. Do you remember receiving instruction manuals with your CDs? We knew we didn’t require the Prima guide, but it had some lovely artwork. The simulation game was at its peak during this time.

Tycoon was frequently added to the end-of-game titles. Tycoons could be found in the zoo, railroad, mall, moon, skateboard park, fast food industry, airport, golf resort, and Las Vegas. But then, a holy trinity in video games appeared, and things changed. I’m not talking about tank-healer-DPS, though. The genres that dominated were first-person shooter, role-playing, and real-time strategy.

Additionally, there wasn’t as much stratification between independent and AAA games during the simulated era (pronounced triple-A). However, gaming gained popularity. Bethesda, Square Enix, and Ubisoft were among the popular flagship franchises that developers who had founded carved out a group of expensive studios that became known as AAA. Both game developers continued their series while contributing to the definition of success and popularity in the gaming industry, including exploiting popular genres. New or low-budget “indie” publishers were thus left to continue flagging genres and developing new ones.

Finally, the entire classical nerd culture, as well as gaming, entered the mainstream. Thanks to J.K. Rowling, science fiction and fantasy went through the roof, and everyone and their mothers started going to see superhero movies. And if game designers saw this, what would they do? They began incorporating it into their daily tasks. More weapons, more space, more magic, more wide-open spaces, and more surrealism were all things we needed. Simulation games, with their commonplace themes and hazy goals, vanished.

These are a few causes behind the collapse of simulation games, but why do we need them again?

We Want Our Wishes to Come True

The primary reason we require more simulation games is that they allow us to fulfill our fantasies. You stated you wanted to be an astronaut when you were five, and then you matured and became a CPA. However, the Kerbal Space Program allows you to construct and launch your rocket. Who cares if you don’t resemble the cartoon version of Frankenstein’s monster Kerbal; you’re heading to space!

You first began imagining what life might be like if there were fairies and vampires when you were thirteen years old. What if you were one of them? Although there is still no solid scientific proof that they exist, The Sims 3: Supernatural extension pack allows your Sims to coexist with them.

When you were twenty, you visited your local history museum’s Egyptian section and thought it would be fun to examine a real pyramid. After comparing the cost of flights to Cairo, you concluded that it might be wiser to pay off your automobile first. The ancient queen’s tomb can now be explored in virtual reality thanks to Nefertari: Journey to Eternity.

Although they aren’t always the best options, video games might help you get closer to realizing your dreams. They might not take away your desire to travel or your regret of not succeeding. To sate your appetite and draw you into a realistic world where everything you want or need is just a click (or a cheat code) away, these virtual encounters can occasionally be all you need. In some circumstances, they catalyze to encourage you to take action in your everyday life rather than a cure.

We Do Discover New Things

I have a lot of pleasant memories from playing the Zoo Tycoon series. I gained comprehensive knowledge of the game’s adoptable and unlocked creatures. I didn’t know the Przewalski’s horse was the last remaining species of wild horse. I was ignorant of the severely endangered status of animals and had never heard of the extinct thylacine. Playing the games helped me learn all that, and my curiosity led me to do numerous swirling Wikipedia deep dives.

Simulation games often teach you practical lessons in addition to facts and book smarts, which is one of their best aspects. In Zoo Tycoon 2, giant pandas cost $50,000, but since they are well-liked and attract visitors, your virtual zoo will eventually make more money. By the way, that’s much less than what it would cost the Chinese government to maintain a panda in a legitimate zoo. That’s right, long before my high school economics teacher, Zoo Tycoon 2, taught me about the time value of money and opportunity cost.

The adage “experience is the best teacher” has probably come across your ears. It is real. Unfortunately, gaining experience in the real world can be challenging, and it may take years for your goals to materialize. However, with simulation games, you can instantly see the benefits of your work. Mistakes you commit may require you to restart a campaign or cause you to fail, but they have no real-world repercussions.

You can experiment with different engine configurations and wing and rudder configurations to see what occurs; when you realize that your amusement park has tonnes of thrilling rides but no restrooms or trash cans, you can laugh. But once more, these don’t really make an impact. You’re not in charge of damage management at Boeing after one of your aircraft crashed on a transatlantic voyage. No one will visit your park in the first place since… you have no amenities; therefore, you aren’t the manager of Disney Parks wondering how you’re going to acquire the money for facilities.

Even though your real-life objectives may not be as high-minded, these games teach us important life lessons. Take risks, but don’t put others in danger while doing so. Prior to starting an expensive or time-consuming project, inventory your resources and make a list of everything you might require. To learn these lessons and receive feedback faster, simulation games offer a risk-free and secure environment.

We have a small part of us that believes we can do it better.

While playing simulation games can bring us down a peg when we learn new, useful facts about management and construction that we didn’t know previously, they also feed our imaginations. If we’re being completely honest, we’ve all had experiences in real life where we’ve thought, “I could totally make this better.” And we can get into video games, particularly in free-form or sandbox modes.

Making things more to our tastes is sometimes necessary. Consider the common grievances you have with everyday occurrences. They confusingly laid out shopping centers. Restaurants with a dearth of vegetarian options. Colleges with modest dorm accommodations. These can be fixed.

When we have unlimited resources, there are moments when we need to push the boundaries of what is possible. Now consider any grandiose plans you may have that may never materialize. A theme park based on Avatar: The Last Airbender. a dinosaur, and another prehistoric animal aquarium. A spacecraft in cherry red with racing stripes. These can be produced.