A modern take on the classic city simulation for your Windows PC

Cities Skylines

Cities Skylines

  -  Paid
Cities Skylines is a fully-featured city simulation game that allows modern gamers to experience a brand-new take on this classic genre and take control of all aspects of modern city management.

Built from the ground up to take advantage of all modern rendering techniques and advanced simulation algorithms, this popular title represents one of the most successful and realistic games in the genre of city management.

By directly focusing on streamlining the gameplay elements, visual presentation, and deep simulation of hundreds of individual elements that are needed to build and maintain thriving modern residential, industrial and governmental hubs, Cities: Skylines successfully managed to dethrone the legendary Sim City franchise and become a number one choice for countless players who are seeking new challenges in the city building experience.

In order to serve the needs of both novices and seasoned players of the city building videogame genre, Cities Skylines initially task players to start building their first city from scratch. Once an empty field, the cities created in this game can grow to incredible sizes, with complexities touching every aspect of modern life.

Cities Skylines Screenshot 1

As the city becomes larger, the duties that are placed on the player (who serves the role of the town's mayor) will grow and will start touching areas such as residential expansion, education, basic infrastructure (water, electricity), police, healthcare, and many other essentials and economic elements. Each of the decisions will, directly and indirectly, affect the local economy and the residents will react by either thriving or demanding changes that will improve their wellbeing and lifestyle.
One of the most visually engaging and important aspects of Cities Skyline lies in its extensive local traffic simulation, which transforms the static city blocks and road networks into a buzzing and thriving modern city with realistic pedestrian and vehicle movement. The eye-catching presentation is especially affected by the presence of the full day and night cycle.

As mayor, the player can also separate the city into different districts and enact specific laws and policies that will affect those regions. In what is a tradition for every serious simulation game on the PC platform, this game, of course, comes with full support for community-created mods. This enables users of this game to expand the capabilities found in the basic game package and optimize it for more immersive play.

Cities Skylines can be played on very modest PC gaming configuration, but beware, it does not support Intel Integrated Graphics Cards, making it impossible to play on the vast majority of modern laptops that do not feature a dedicated GPU. The game is optimized for all modern versions of Windows OS (7, 8, 10 or 11, 64-bit only).

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Key Features
  • Extensive City Planning Tools: Players can control zoning, road placement, public services, and taxation, with intricate detail and flexibility.
  • Advanced Traffic Simulation: The game features a sophisticated traffic simulation that requires strategic planning to avoid congestion.
  • Public Transport Management: Includes buses, trains, subways, and more, allowing players to create efficient public transport networks.
  • Districts and Policies: Players can designate districts within their city and apply policies specific to those areas.
  • Day-Night Cycle: The game includes a dynamic day-night cycle which affects the behavior of the city and its residents.
  • Rich Modding Community: Extensive support for mods allows players to customize and enhance their gameplay experience.
  • Natural Disasters: With the “Natural Disasters” DLC, players can prepare for and respond to catastrophic events.
User Interface

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Top Bar: Displays important information such as city population, financial balance, and notifications.

Toolbar: Contains tools for zoning, road construction, and services.

Sidebar: Provides access to city statistics, policies, and milestones.

Information Panels: Show detailed data on various aspects like traffic flow, pollution, and public satisfaction.

Installation and Setup

Purchase and Download: It can be purchased from platforms like Steam, GOG, and the Paradox Store. After purchase, download and install the game.

Initial Setup: Upon launching the game for the first time, adjust the graphics and sound settings to match your system’s capabilities.

Starting a New Game: Select a map and name your city. Each map has different terrain and resource availability.

How to Play
  • Zoning: Begin by zoning residential, commercial, and industrial areas. Proper zoning is crucial for balanced city growth.
  • Infrastructure: Build roads to connect different zones. Ensure there is adequate water and electricity supply by placing relevant facilities and connecting them to your zones.
  • Services: Add essential services like healthcare, education, and police stations to maintain citizen happiness and productivity.
  • Public Transport: Develop a public transport network to reduce traffic congestion. Place bus stops, train stations, and metro lines strategically.
  • Policies: Implement city-wide or district-specific policies to address issues like tax rates, recycling, and smoking bans.
  • Expansion: As your city grows, unlock new tiles to expand your city. Continue balancing residential, commercial, and industrial needs while adding advanced services like airports and stadiums.
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How do I manage traffic effectively?
Utilize a mix of road types and avoid too many intersections. Implement public transport systems and use traffic management policies.

What are the best ways to increase happiness in my city?
Provide adequate services such as healthcare, education, and entertainment. Ensure clean water, efficient waste disposal, and low pollution levels.

How can I deal with pollution?
Place industrial zones away from residential areas. Use advanced treatment plants and encourage recycling. Plant trees to reduce air pollution.

Why is my city losing money?
Check your budget panel for high expenses. Adjust taxes and reduce funding for over-supplied services. Attract more residents and businesses by improving city conditions.

What should I do if my city’s population is declining?
Improve the quality of life by enhancing services and reducing pollution. Ensure there are enough jobs and housing. Consider lowering taxes temporarily.


SimCity: The classic city-building game that inspired by this game.

Tropico Series: Focuses on managing a city in a tropical island setting, with an emphasis on politics and economics.

Anno 1800: Combines city-building with resource management and trade in a historical setting.

Surviving Mars: A city-building game set on Mars, focusing on colony survival and resource management.

Planetbase: A survival strategy game where players build and manage off-world colonies.


The game is priced around $29.99 for the base game. Various DLC packs, which add new features and content, range from $7.99 to $14.99 each. The game is often available at discounted prices during sales on platforms like Steam.

System Requirements
  • OS: Microsoft Windows 7/8/10/11 (64-bit)
  • Processor: Intel Core i5-3470, 3.20GHz or AMD FX-6300, 3.5Ghz
  • Memory: 6 GB RAM
  • Graphics: nVIDIA GeForce GTX 660, 2 GB or AMD Radeon HD 7870, 2 GB
  • DirectX: Version 11
  • Storage: 4 GB available space
  • Extensive modding community enhances gameplay.
  • Detailed simulation and control over city management.
  • Wide variety of public transport options.
  • Dynamic day-night cycle adds realism.
  • Regular updates and DLCs expand content.
  • Performance issues in large cities.
  • Requires multiple DLCs for the complete experience.
  • Some players find traffic management overly complex.
  • Occasional bugs and glitches.
Also Available: Download Cities Skylines for Mac

  • Cities Skylines Screenshots

    The images below have been resized. Click on them to view the screenshots in full size.

    Cities Skylines Screenshot 1
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