Project Highrise Review [Update]

Project Highrise

From the makers of 1849, the folks at SomaSim are proud to bring you Project Highrise – a skyscraper management sim à la Sim Tower. A genre that hasn’t been touched upon since 1998, when Yoot Tower last released. Project Highrise aims to bring that experience to the modern age, and I must say they did an incredible job on it. Which is a great relief, because all we had up to that point were terrible mobile games that just failed to replicate the genre.

The game starts you out with a one story building, and limited funds to raise your humble little building straight into the heavens. Doing everything from bringing in tenants to occupy your building, to managing the infrastructure.Project Highrise -Game Screen

Dealing with the tenants is pretty straightforward and painless, which is a good thing, because as your tower and population grows, so do your troubles. Lot conditions deteriorate over time, and the amount of traffic your building sees helps wear down your lots. You can combat this by building maintenance offices that send  out crews to fix things up, or build broom closets on each floor to slow the rate of grime and disrepair. Another thing to note is that you have to strategically place your lots to avoid making your tenants unhappy. Things like noise or odd smells (from restaurants or trash bins) affect the moods of tenants who are renting a residential lot. It’s recommended that you build residences on upper floors and away from all the hustle and bustle to keep them happy.

There are other requirements needed to guarantee that your building succeeds. Restaurants, retail stores and certain offices bring in visitors who help generate Buzz points, which in turn can be used to start media campaigns that grant your building temporary bonuses that promote growth.

Project Highrise - Media Buzz Screen

You also want to work on your buildings prestige, which helps you eventually attract more fancier restaurants to your building, which of course bring in more revenue. You can increase your prestige by raising your buildings population and by installing pieces of artwork into your highrise.  Having these works of art will pull in visitors to you, as well as make your tenants happy when they walk past them. The greater the work, the higher the prestige it grants you will be.

The game provides you with the means to tackle the challenges you will inevitably face, and they work pretty well. With that said, there were however some issues with the game. This game is absolutely not for those without patience. Though there is a way to speed up the game, the speed itself isn’t all that fast. Which is of course understandable, because things can get pretty out of hand the greater your building becomes. If you don’t keep an eye on things, your building will begin to fall apart and your tenants will begin to vacate. Having too high a speed would only expedite the death of your building. Another issue is the lack of variety in the visuals, everything just starts to look the same and the customization options offered in game are lacking. Project Highrise doesn’t allow you to add wallpapers in offices or residences to change things up. Thankfully they made sure to add Steam Workshop support, so it becomes a non issue.

How high will you go in Project Highrise?

Ultimately, your goal is to build a successful skyscraper that will stand the test of time. It’s up to you to decide whether your building succeeds or not. I find that your first days in game affect the outcome of things, since I decided to bring in as many high paying tenants with low maintenance costs into the building as fast as possible. Take things in stride and you’re sure to succeed in this game. I had a blast playing Project Highrise, and I’m glad the folks at SomaSim delivered such a fun and worthy contender to Yoot Saidos SimTower. A game I spent a large part of my childhood playing  when we first got a PC. If you’re yearning for a building sim, this one is definitely worth a look.

Project Highrise: Las Vegas Update

After having played many hours of Project Highrise, seeing the new DLC is truly a sight for sore eyes. Many of us felt that something was missing from Project Highrise during the initial release. And that something was the ability to run a hotel. A feature that was present in SimTower, but many of us didn’t mind as much since there weren’t many games available for the genre. We were just happy that we had something new after many long years.

Before you can get started on building your hotel, you must first place down a hotel front desk. Once you’ve done that, you can get started on your hotel. You’re no longer stuck building an office after all, so you can just focus on a hotel if you chose to do so. So now you’ve set down your hotel rooms and front desk, that should be enough to keep visitors happy, right? Well, no the new DLC also added some new services that tie in with the hotels. Hotel rooms do get hot and dirty after all.

Air conditioning is a new utility that is a must for hotel rooms. Without it, visitors would flock right out of your hotel. They work in the same way that other utilities like water, gas and electricity do. And naturally, hotel rooms get dirty when you have visitors stay in them. So now you must hire housekeepers to tidy things up.

These new additions are useless however, unless you build a newly added service elevator. These new elevators allow certain services to reach upper floors since normal elevators can’t accommodate them. So be sure to keep this in mind when building your hotel, or you’re gonna have a bad time restructuring. Being an architect is no easy matter  after all, as there are many factors to take into account to keep your patrons satisfied.

Additionally, you can build a casino to help bring in more visitors and their wallets into your building. Bringing a nice boost to your towers revenue. You are also now able to host events and shows in your building, which also help make your visitors happy and bring in more money. There are also NPCs that can be invited to your building in the form of rockstars, comedians and business gurus. But you just can’t invite them right away. You must first meet certain criteria before you can do so.

All in all, I’ve been enjoying the new content and all it’s offerings. I appreciate that they added workarounds to some of the issues that were present in the initial release. But i still wish they addressed some of the more jarring issued that I wrote about previously. The game still suffers from lack of variety visually, everything still ends up looking the same. I for one love the option for customization, especially in a game where I’m supposed to develop my own tower. But at least they added Steam Workshop support. The community can at least remedy the issue. Project Highrise: Las Vegas is a welcome addition to an already great game. These new options help add replayability, which is much needed after having played the game for many hours. If you already have the base game and enjoyed it, do pick the DLC up as it’s well worth the price considering how much they added.

Project Highrise
Plenty of ways to tackle management
Addictive formula
Revival of the building sim
No visual variety
Gameplay takes a lot of patience