Earlier this morning, it was reported (by myself and many others) that Electronic Arts had failed to release SimCity on time via their Origin video game distribution platform. From a consumer point of view, this debacle most certainly a failure, and no correction can be made.
However, with new information coming in, it appears as if the entirety of the situation has been due to a self imposed throttling of the Origin servers in order to prevent outages from the initial high demand. While this does make logical sense, it is still unclear why EA would opt to do this instead of offering an advance download option that simply didn’t activate until the game’s release time of midnight, Eastern, on March 5 for the North American release.
Another, more conservative but still sensible option, would have been to meter the download process from the launcher. Essentially, Origin could have built a queue into the launcher that would sequentially order the download process in a first-come-first-serve manner. This queue process would be especially beneficial in an overnight launch as is the case for SimCity because the queue would allow customers to know they are essentially standing in line for server access, and would therefore be able to use their time more wisely until the download completed. Sleep, for instance.
As it stands now, a large volume of SimCity’s early adopters still are not able to access the game. Others have reported that once a game download is disrupted in any way, they again get the “Game Not Released” message. All of this further indicates that Origin is pacing their server resources, but doing so in the least responsible and most aggravating of manners for consumers.