Why is EA desperate to require online play that will later make the game artificially obsolete? The answer is that a well-realized city simulation has to be a vastly unprofitable game for EA. I can't even calculate all of the new games I failed to buy while I was hooked on earlier versions of SimCity. I spent so many hours with that thing my per-hour price for playing SimCity has got to be almost zero. For me, SimCity has proven to be the cheapest form of commercial entertainment possible. No wonder they need to break it.