Electricity And Water Utilities Have Massively Changed In Cities: Skylines II

This week’s weekly dev blog for Colossal Order’s city-builder Cities: Skylines II gives the low-down on how electricity and water work.

The electricity and water works have been revamped for this iteration, bringing less like an attempt to recreate a better SimCity, and a better realisation of realistic city-building.

We’ve learned in a previous dev diary that you now don’t need to manually drag water pipes and power lines to ensure buildings have either utility. This time around, most road types will include electricity and water infrastructure so you don’t need to manually add cables and pipes, something that can easily be messed up when you just start a city.

Power lines can still be built to transfer power from power plants to the city. But instead of having it touch a zone and all the adjacent and connected zones get lit up, you now have to build Transformer Stations.

Electricity carried through powerlines and electric cable (the ones automatically build when most roads are built) have a max capacity of how much electricity they can carry. So now there’s another potential issue that players need to resolve: electricity bottlenecks. Adequete power connection and Transfomer Stations covering more sides of the bottlenecking area should resolve it.

Also, electricity demand can spike, especially with the changing seasons being a thing so expect to see spikes in demand happen during cold winters (as every home cranks up the heater) and hot days (where aircon and fans are used more often).

Players can construct Emergency Battery Stations to store excess power to prepare for power consumption spikes like this. It’s also useful for cities that make use of Solar Power Plants, as they only generate electricity during the day.

Excess electricity can be exported to Outside Connections. You can opt to import electricity, or import fuels like gas and coal to power Gas Power Plants and Coal Power Plants, but it will be costly.

At launch, Cities: Skylines II includes the following power plants. Some of these are upgradable, which changes how the building look visually as well as providing better yeilds:

  • Wind Turbine
  • Small Coal Power Plant
  • Coal Power Plant
  • Gas Power Plant
  • Geothermal Power Plant
  • Solar Power Plant
  • Nuclear Power Plant
  • Hydro-Electric Power Plant

As for water, there is now two different sources. One is surface water, the water we can see from rivers, lakes and oceans.

The other new one is groundwater. Water doesn’t just magically appear out of Water Towers anymore. Instead, you’ll need to have a Groundwater Pumping Station to prodice water from these deposits. Groundwater is susceptible to ground pollution, so keep industries and landfill away from them or it will take a while to fix the stinky dirty water that make people ill (and move out, or die).

Sewage is still a factor, though not much has changed in this department. You can dump the sewage raw with the Sewage Outlet in a far away place that it won’t get sucked by the Water Pumping Station. Or process the sewage through the Wastewater Treatment Plant- which generates water and trash that require garbage trucks to pick up.

It looks like the Utilities aspect in Cities: Skylines II has been streamlined in some aspects, but gets added depth in others. Electricity bottlenecking sounds like an intriguing concept to have, and should lead to more interesting decisions when it comes to city planning.

Cities: Skylines II will be available on October 24 for the PS5, PC (Steam, Microsoft Store) and Xbox Series X|S. The game will also be available on Xbox Game Pass and PC Game Pass at launch.

Source: Paradox Forum

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