'SimCity 4': The Educational System

SimCity 4 screenshot

Electronic Arts

In real life, education opens windows of opportunity that you might not see otherwise. The same goes for SimCity 4. Your citizens need education to get better jobs and bring commercial and high tech industries into your city.

Starting Education Early

If the goal of your city is to be an industrial park, you may want to keep the education limited, if any at all. If Sims are educated they will want other job options besides industrial opportunities.

With that said, we like to build an elementary school in the early stages of the city. This way, the city's population will start to grow intellectually sooner rather than later. You can afford to build education buildings without having a big budget if you micromanage each education building. If you click on a building, you have the option to change the budget for capacity and buses. Take advantage of this, and don't waste money paying for a large capacity when you only have a few students.

Map coverage is also key. Plan ahead so you can build without major overlaps. Keep away from the edges of the map, or else you'll lose valuable coverage.

EQ stands for education quotient. Sims start out with a low EQ in the beginnings of a city but gain as they go to school. New sims born in the city start with a portion of their parents EQ, making each new generation of Sims start off smarter. The smarter they start, the higher their EQ can be when they reach adulthood.

The Education Buildings

As your city grows, you will earn more educational buildings. Rewards include a large elementary school, large high school, private school, and a university. You'll need a regular elementary school and high school at first. As you expand, you'll need to add more schools. Try to add the large capacity buildings as early as you can. How many you need greatly depends on the type of city and map size. Large maps may need 8 or 9, while small ones 3 or 4 high schools.

Libraries and museums do not need to be added right away, wait until you have a stable education system in place. We like to keep the education buildings together, so we leave room for a high school, elementary school, and a library. They have similar coverage, so it makes map covered a little easier.

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