Preview code used with many thanks to Michael Meyers Public Relations.
Highrise City is a new kid in the city building genre about to debut on Steam; maybe you have tried out the game demo when the Steam Next Fest was running. We’ve been lucky enough to get an Early Access code for the game, and I’ve been busy playing it.
One of the best City building games on PC is Cities: Skylines. I’ve played the game on and off since it was released and I love it. On first look at Highrise City, you can’t help comparing it to Cities: Skylines as it has many similarities.
Laying out roads for your cities traffic is done in much the same way as in Cities: Skylines and can prove to be just as fiddly to do. Milestones, a city budget, residential, industry and office zones all exist in Highrise City as in Cities: Skyline.
Resource-based City Building
The biggest and most fundamental difference between the games is in Cities Skylines you can build as long as you have money in your bank balance. You don’t need resources only money. However, Highrise City is a far more resource-based game than Cities Skylines is.
You must set up a lumberjack yard for wood and clay works to make bricks. The resources are then used as building supplies to construct your city. So not only do you need a healthy bank balance, but you also have to have resources available to build.
Highrise City also lets you build speciality farms and fisheries for food to feed your citizens. Overall, there are 50 different resources in the game.
There is a video tutorial to play through once you start the game; it gives you more or less all the info you need to run a successful city. There were two maps available to pick from on the build of the game I played; hopefully, more maps will be available once the game is released.
Like most city building games, you can tailor the game when it starts to your needs by adjusting the difficulty levels for beginners and advanced players. In addition, you can research new buildings and facilities once you have built a Research building in your city and use the research tree. Trading is also part of Highrise City; set up a port and trade with other cities to increase the balance of your cities economy.
Up to One Million Citizens
You can grow your city with up to one million inhabitants per city, there are five different population classes, such as residential and professional residential and office class.
For a bit of fun, the developers also included a truck that you can drive in your city, giving you an on-street view of what it feels like for your citizens to drive in the city. Some folk might find the added ability to drive a truck fun, but it’s not for me as my driving skills are none existent.
It’s still early days for Highrise City, and sometimes that did show in the build of the game I was playing. For example, there are frame rate judders, even though my laptop is more than capable of running the game. Also, the screen has a ripple appearance when you move the camera around the city, especially if you move quickly from one side to the other.
You can decorate your city as various decorations are included in the game. There is an extensive collection of decorations to use. Unfortunately, none of the decorations are named, I’d like to see the decorations individually named in the game as it can be difficult to work out what some of the decorations are from just the tiny picture you’re shown.
While Highrise City is enjoyable and an interesting take on the city building genre, I do hope the developers have plans for future DLCs to be released for the game. I’ve had a great time playing the game, while it isn’t perfect, very few early build games are. However, with some updates and maybe a DLC or two added to the game it could turn out to be exactly the city building game you are looking for. I’m looking forward to seeing what the developers have planned for the game in the future.
For me, I don’t think it will be a replacement for Cities: Skyline but there is ample room for another good city building game on PC in the Steam store. Developers FourExo Entertainment and publishers Deck 13 have announced that Highrise City will release on early access on the 24th of March. You can find the Highrise City Steam page here.