Development Diary #10: Game Progression Welcome! It’s time for another Cities: Skylines II development diary. Today is all about game progression, which …
Hello again everyone! As is tradition by now we have a free patch to compliment the release of Hotels & Retreats coming on the 23rd of May and that’s what this dev diary is all about. We have some new goodies for the base game, we have some updates to existing content, and we have new content for existing expansions adding more cross-DLC content. This update brings new additions to the base game, Green Cities, Parklife, Industries, Sunset Harbor, Airports, and Plazas & Promenades – and yes, it has new trolleybus options and roads!
Let’s start with a look at the new vehicles in this update. Everyone who owns the base game will be able to enjoy 6 new industry vehicles and the new cargo train engine. The industry vehicles come in a variety of shapes and sizes from the extravagant pie van delivering goods to heavy trucks hauling raw materials. Like the new cargo train engine they are automatically added to the selection of vehicles that can appear in your city adding more variation to it.
With Green Cities, we introduced the biofuel bus depot and its buses, and with this update, we’re expanding the fleet with two new biofuel buses. The new biofuel bus has a slightly higher capacity than the original and can carry 40 passengers, while the articulated biofuel bus can transport up to 75 passengers making it ideal for those busy lines. Like the existing biofuel bus, they are quieter and produce less noise pollution.
While we’re on the subject of buses, let’s take a look at the new options available if you own Sunset Harbor. We have a total of 8 new buses for you to choose from with two new trolleybuses, 5 articulated trolleybuses, and a new doubledecker intercity bus to bring in more tourists! The new trolleybuses range in capacity from 26 to 90 significantly increasing the options for your lines. Additionally, we have rebalanced trolleybuses which includes making them quieter than regular buses, but more on that later in this dev diary!
Before we move on from vehicles and look at what else this update includes, there is one more vehicle we need to show you: The Park Maintenance Vehicle. This vehicle is added to the game if you own Parklife and will service your parks giving them a boost to their entertainment. Who doesn’t enjoy a clean and well-kept park? You can select this new version, the existing vehicle, or let the game randomly pick between the two by using the vehicle selector on the Park Maintenance Building.
Next in line, we have a bunch of new roads starting with 3 new industrial roads added to Industries. They all generate more noise pollution than regular roads but in turn, they’re cheaper to build and cost your city less upkeep. The Small Four-Lane Industry Road brings those extra lanes to tight industrial areas teaming with traffic. But sometimes 4 lanes just aren’t enough and that’s where the Large Industry Road comes in handy with its 6 lanes. Last, but not least, we have the Industry Highway offering 3 lanes in one direction as a cheaper alternative to the base game highway.
And of course, Sunset Harbor gets new roads to compliment the buses and bring you more flexibility in building your trolleybus lines. If you own just Sunset Harbor you will get access to 4 new roads, in the medium roads category you will find the Four-Lane Road with Trolleybus Wires and Trees, while the large roads category includes the Six-Lane Road with Median and Trolleybus Wires, which also comes with a grass median and trees.
Adding bicycle lanes to the mix we get 3 more roads available if you own both Sunset Harbor and After Dark. You don’t have to sacrifice your dedicated bicycle lanes when adding trolleybuses to the roads, whether it’s small neighborhood roads or large main roads, there’s an option for you to use. Both the medium and large roads have medians, with the Six-Lane Road with Median Trees, Trolleybus Wires and Bicycle Lanes adding a green touch to the road.
If you’re looking to integrate trolleybuses into your pedestrian areas, we have you covered. When you have both Sunset Harbor and Plazas & Promenades installed, you get access to these 6 new pedestrian streets with trolleybus wires. They include both sides and all three styles you have come to know, and the bus lanes allow both regular buses and trolleybuses to use them. Trolleybus roads have also been improved to be able to intersect with roads with tram wires, making it easy to include both tram and trolleybuses in your pedestrian areas without needing elaborate intersections where they cross paths.
This update isn’t all roads and vehicles though – we already did that one – it includes a selection of new buildings and decorations for you to enjoy. As part of the base game, we have 3 new trees: Silver Birch, Norway Spruce, and Large Scrub. If you spend time in the asset editor you may also enjoy the two new hedge props available to decorate any buildings.
Green Cities gets a new power plant, the Advanced Coal Power Plant, which is available from the start offering a less polluting alternative to the existing Coal Power Plant. While this plant doesn’t provide clean energy and comes at a higher cost, it produces more energy than the regular Coal Power Plant making it a great option to reduce pollution while still being able to supply a starting city.
For Parklife, we have 3 new buildings, one for amusement parks, one for zoos, and one for nature reserves. Give your citizens a new thrill with the Log Ride, educate your citizens about tarsiers with your city zoo’s new Tarsier House, or preserve the local cultural history with the Nature Reserve Museum. Each park building adds to the entertainment of the park area they’re used in or they can be used as standalone parks placed alongside a road.
If you have Industries you will notice a new warehouse in your menu, the Warehouse with Railway Connection. It functions like a regular warehouse but is able to ship and receive goods directly via your city’s rail network, making it ideal for areas needing to import or export industrial or commercial goods. Its capacity sits between the Medium Warehouse and the Large Warehouse with 600 tons of storage space.
If you have both Industries and Sunset Harbor you will find a new unique factory, the Seafood Factory, combining fish and plastics to provide your citizens with delicious fermented fish in easy-to-open plastic containers. Additionally, your warehouses are now able to store fish making the production of fish-related products more convenient.
Airports gets two new decorative concrete aprons, a large and a small one, which can be placed almost anywhere! They snap to networks and block zoning tiles, but they can overlap with both networks and most buildings, making them perfect for filling in spaces between your aircraft stands, hangars, parked planes – or anywhere in your city you want a paved area. We have made these as flexible as possible and we look forward to seeing the uses you come up with!
Lastly, we have two new variations for the Small Fountain Plaza and the Flower Plaza from Plazas & Promenades. Where they previously only had one type of stone available, they now come in sandstone, bluestone, and cobblestone matching your pedestrian streets and the Large Fountain Plaza for even more variation when decorating your city. When placed they select a random variation, but you can change it to your favorite using the submesh variation selector on the building info panel.
We’re nearing the end of this dev diary, but before we get there we have a few improvements to go through. Last update we rebalanced the cost of transport vehicles to benefit from the variations in capacity, and for this update, we wanted to address your feedback on trolleybuses and improve their viability as a transportation option. This resulted in the following changes:
We hope these changes and the additional trolleybus vehicles and roads will make them more useful in your cities!
But trolleybuses aren’t the only transport vehicles getting an update. Following Hubs & Transports, we’ve taken a look at the capacity of ferries and agree they should be able to transport more passengers, so all ferries have their capacity increased by 30, meaning they now range from 40 to 80 passengers.
Last on our list of balance changes are parks. While Hotels & Retreats add new tourism buildings to benefit your hotels, we wanted to make sure the original base game parks were still viable choices. Some of them were quite large or costly without providing similarly increased benefits. Those parks have had their cost, upkeep, entertainment, entertainment radius, and amount of visitors adjusted bringing the underperforming parks up to a level with the rest.
For road-building, we have a new quality-of-life tool allowing you to control the zoning grid on roads with zoning. You can cycle through the different options of zoning on both sides, zoning only on the left, zoning only on the right, or no zoning at all, using the new Toggle Zoning button next to the existing road tools. You can select your preferred zoning when first building a road or change the zoning later on using the upgrade tool.
And with that, we have reached the end of the dev diary! This update and Hotels & Retreats will be available on the 23rd of May, and you can find the patch notes listing all the content, improvements, and bug fixes here. As we were not able to include all the bug fixes we planned in this update, we will have another small update fixing some bugs after this, the date of which is still to be determined.
Until then we hope you enjoy this update and look forward to seeing how you use the new additions in your cities!