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Some Small Suggestions to Enhance Zoning in Cities: Skylines

Discussion in 'General Forums' started by AzemOcram, Jan 9, 2016.

  1. AzemOcram

    AzemOcram Executive

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    First off, I want to thank Colossal Order and the wonderful modding community for making and improving such a great game! The game is already better than all predecessors on average but I have a couple ideas to bring zoning to a whole new level.

    The gist of my suggestions are

    1. Density as a side/modifier setting
    2. New Zone types
    3. Zone levels should only measure wealth.
    4. Preferences for housing, employment, and commerce/services.
    5. Specializations should affect the entire economy.
    6. Offices and Warehouses should produce Logistics
    7 Deeper grid zones and free-form Industrial Park zones

    ____________________________________________________________________

    Now for more thorough explanations

    1. Dense Residential and Dense Commercial should no longer be seperate zones but low (detached), medium (W2W lowrise or seperated/narrow midrises), and high densities should get little buttons in the same space as road geometry (straight, arced, or curvy)
    2. The empty space should be replaced with Hotel zone and Industrial Park zone.
    a) Hotel zones in generic districts grow Business Hotels (with demand based off of number of office jobs, offices producing slightly less taxes without hotels and producing much higher taxes with adequate or excessive business hotels) while hotel zones in tourism or entertainment districts grow Holiday Hotels (with demand based off number of tourists that leave the city with money, tourists would then get purses/budgets that get depleted with visitation to unique buildings, hotels, and commerce)
    b) Industrial Parks would be zoned just like farms are zoned in Cities XL. Free-form parks should use the same system but have options to go without surrounding paths. In generic districts, they become parking lots with storage lots without pollution and with the job spaces, logistics production, and maximum orders of special large semi-truck freight orders going up with increasing levels (up to level 3, like normal industry). In specialized industrial districts on top of their respective resource deposits, the zones become primary (extraction) industry AKA farms+plantations+pastures, working forests, quarries (new specialization), open pit mines (coal and ore should be different resources), and oil drilling sites (with even distribution of pumps so as to completely deplete all oil deposits in range at the same time)
    3. Higher zone levels mean that they house, employ, or cater to higher educated and wealthier Cims with the same capacities while growth stages (which hold more of the same type of Cims) should make a debut to the game so that convenient access (measured in commute times and amount of times vehicles disappear along commutes) to jobs, goods, and services.
    4. Students, Single workers, [childless] Couples, Families with Children, and Retirees should all have strong preferences. Students and Single Workers should strongly prefer High Density housing but will tolerate affordable Medium Density housing; they won't live in Low Density housing. Couples prefer Medium Density housing but will tolerate [affordable] Low Density housing and [safe & healthy] High Density housing. Families with Children strongly prefer Low Density housing but will tolerate safe & healthy Medium Density housing; they won't live in High Density housing. Retirees prefer Medium Density housing but will tolerate safe Low Density housing; they won't move into High Density housing. Marital Status, Children, and Age should contribute to employment and shopping preferences in addition to education and [wealth] level.
    5. Hardware stores should be common in petroleum, forestry, or mining specialized districts. Car dealerships and repair shops should be common in mining and petroleum districts. Furniture stores should be much more common in forestry districts. Grocers, farmers' markets, and sit-down restaurants should be far more common in agricultural districts. Commerce relating to textiles and clothing (yardage stores, seamstresses, cobblers, boutiques, thrift stores, consignment shops, department stores) should be more common in Agriculture and Forestry districts to account for the influx of leather, cotton, linen, dyes, and rayon. In other words, commerce within specialized districts should demand more specialized goods (with sit-down restaurants and farmer's markets demanding raw agricultural products (fresh produce) with grocers, fast food, and supermarkets demanding processed agricultural products (shelf-stable food)). Low density and mid-density housing should also change appearance, looking rural in Agricultural districts, wooden in Forestry districts, modern and metallic in [Metal] Mining districts, modern & made out of sturdy concrete in [Petroleum] Drilling districts, more secure and modern in Entertainment districts, and more stereotypical of map types (European, tropical, old-fashioned brick (temperate), or ski-lodging+alpine/winter retreat style) in Vacation districts.
    6. Offices should provide logistics, which benefit industry and travel around like electricity (so if there are adequate logistics and all buildings are on the same grid, all factories become more profitable) but that would require a change in the way factories behave. If there are no logistics, factories pollute the same as they currently do and provide slightly less money. If there are balanced or excess logistics, factories pollute 50% less, generate more profits than they do now, and make more goods with less input (doesn't affect farm fields or tree plantations but petroleum wells (and ore mines) generate the same amount of petroleum (or ore) while consuming far less ground resources). If there are shortages of logistics in industry zones, some buildings in low density or medium density zones become warehouses, which import their respective good (generic or refined specialties) in semi-trucks (which are slightly bigger than normal import trucks but with higher capacities) and let nearby factories take goods (freeing up highway traffic) and generate a small amount of logistics as well (not as much as an office building of the same footprint).
    7. Lots (zoned and plopped) should have 3 parts to them:
    a) Main area (must never overlap anything else, not even sidewalk), up to 8 tiles deep for zones, higher for plopped
    b) Extended front (a flexible area that can have road or sidewalk overlap, if the road is flat the overlap is a very narrow strip, if the road is curved the overlap could be a side, corner, or center completely overlapped with parts of this area unconnected), up to 3 tiles deep (always 1 tile deep along perfectly straight road)
    c) Filler, can fill surrounding 3 tiles between zones and roads with textures and props as long as there are no more than 3 tiles in that direction to a road or another zone
     
  2. AzemOcram

    AzemOcram Executive

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    Here is an example of what the zoning UI might look like:

    wqAk51w.png
     
  3. Big Meany Mean

    Big Meany Mean Executive

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    CSK, is it worth it? I have watched some videos and it doesn't look great but I like the way it simulates cities
     
  4. AzemOcram

    AzemOcram Executive

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    Cities: Skylines has a good combination of features and is better in most ways than the competitors but few of the features are actually implemented the best out of all the competitors (but being 2nd (and sometimes 3rd) best in a dozen features is better than being best in 3 features, mediocre on 3 features, and lacking 6 features that similar games have).

    I must admit that some of these suggestions are based not only on my own experiences playing the game but also on feedback I already read on r/CitiesSkylines or the Cities: Skylines forum on Simtropolis.

    I almost forgot, here is a far better mockup picture demonstrating what I want changed to the UI to make the zoning menu better
    BHmB8NE.png
     

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