NOTE: I'm using dollars here. Figures are exact in simoleons.
I started playing SimCity with one goal: to make lots and lots of money. Truth is I suck at making money in real life so I wanted to translate that into a virtual setting.
While the game does a great job of teasing you into making a big metropolis with lots of people, it takes a lot of time to manage a city of thousands of people that require utilities, services and infrastructure.
The simplest way to make money is to get something for free --- like coal, oil and ore -- and sell it at a profit.
It's capitalism, SimCity style!
The First City
3x refineries pumping out 9,833.6 barrels of oil a day, trading them at $4,500 per 1,000 barrels.
"What does this mean," you ask?
It means I make a lot of money.
How how does it compare to coal and ore mining? Let's use a simple equation of Profit Per Hour (PPH) to show how easy it is to make money in SimCity.
Now, each refinery makes:
- 9,833 / 1000 x $4,500 = $45,249 per day.
That works out to a little over $1,800 per hour.
So if you have three refineries working at once, that's around $5,500 per hour.
The Second City
With the first city I wanted to make plastic but I made a major design error and basically had to start from scratch, so I thought I'd try my luck at Ore and Coal mining. I'm glad I did because it paid off.
I took out some large bonds, and shortly after I had a large bank account.
- Ore: 3x refineries with all upgrades (4x shafts) making 96 Ore per day, trading at $5,833 per 10 units.
- Coal: 3x refineries with all upgrades (4x shafts) making 96 Coal per day, trading at $4,423 per 10 units.
Some quick calculations will show that I was making $42,461 per day in profit.
- 96 (Coal) / 10 x $4,423 = $42,461 per day, with a PPH of $1,769.20.
As you can see that's a very similar total to the amount of money oil was bringing it.
- Ore: 96 / 10 X $5,833 = $55,997 per day, with a PPH of
Eventually you'll unlock Mining HQ, at which time I was told by my guidance counsellor to set up a Commerce Division.
I wasn't convinced, and instead went with a Smelting Division to make alloy and metal.
Before long I was exporting and earning a lot of money, roughly $10,000 an hour.
I chose alloy because the export costs were so high, at about $48,000 per 10 units, so as you can imagine your funds quickly increase.
So once I stopped exporting ore and coal to use it at the smelting factory, profits increased by a stunning 830%.
Eventually I found myself running out of room, which limited growth and cut my profits.
So I proposed closing the coal and ore factories and import these materials for new smelting factories.
Imported Ore at $5,833 per 10 tons, and Coal at $4,423 per 10 tons, Revenue of $464,400 (like above) - subtract the costs of Coal ($56K) and Ore ($42.5K) brings it to $365,964, which is a PPH of $15,248!
It is less than the $19,350 PPH above, but I bulldozed the less efficient coal and ore mines which were only making 1/8th of that.
Soon I had a sea of Smelt Factories, with no Ore or Coal mines and had around $3 million in the bank.
But I wasn't satisfied!
What does one do with alloy?
I invested in processors in electronics, which cost $67,000, but when importing plastic to make them I ended up breaking even, with neither money gained or lost.
While I made no money at the time, the processors I had created paved the way for an electronics division, which meant I was creating televisions at a very fast rate.
TVs were selling at $197,654 per 1000! And that was a lot of money!
So I did some numbers on TV
So now I am rich.
At least in SimCity.
$40K a hour, and I have eight factories running, which means $320K in profit per hour.
It wasn't long before I had $20M.
@Beta has challenged me to reach $100 million in the bank: challenge accepted!