Cities Skylines Tips: The Evolution of City-Building

For decades, the city-building genre has captivated a niche audience, tracing back to the days when the original SimCity pioneered the concept of letting players design and govern their own miniature utopias.

With the original franchise dormant, a newcomer, Cities: Skylines, emerged as the genre’s frontrunner, earning acclaim as a worthy successor. However, the time has come for a sequel to breathe new life into the genre.

Enter Cities: Skylines II, building upon its predecessor’s foundation while introducing fresh features and mechanics to challenge even the most seasoned urban planners. Whether you’re a novice embarking on your inaugural city-building journey or a veteran with countless hours of urban design under your belt, here are essential tips and tricks to navigate the world of Cities: Skylines II.


  1. Picking Your Plot
  2. Managing Your Early Budget
  3. Milestones and Development Points
  4. Avoid Overreaching and Plan Ahead
  5. Exercise Caution with Upgrades

The Evolution of City-Building: A Guide to Cities: Skylines II

Picking Your Plot

The first critical decision in Cities: Skylines II is selecting the location for your dream society. Beyond mere aesthetics, each of the six available maps offers distinct terrain, resources, and climate conditions. Consider the implications of terrain on expansion and transportation design, the strategic allocation of resources, and the impact of climate on citizen behavior and infrastructure resilience. A thoughtful selection will lay the groundwork for a thriving metropolis.

Managing Your Early Budget

Exercise prudence in the early stages of city development, as resources are finite, and expenses mount swiftly. Focus on establishing a functional residential area with essential utilities to minimize monthly costs. Pause frequently to plan efficiently, particularly before revenue streams are established, to prevent unnecessary drains on your budget.

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Milestones and Development Points

Navigate the Milestone and Development system to unlock upgrades and new features as your city grows. Earn Development Points to invest in skill trees catering to your city’s evolving needs, such as infrastructure, services, and amenities. Strategic allocation of Development Points ensures steady progress and optimal city development.

Avoid Overreaching and Plan Ahead

Resist the temptation to overcommit to specific zoning plans prematurely. Instead, adopt a flexible approach, laying out road and district networks while deferring zone designations until demands emerge. Regularly assess your city’s needs to prioritize zoning and infrastructure development effectively.

Exercise Caution with Upgrades

Exercise restraint when considering building upgrades, particularly service facilities. While upgrades offer potential benefits, they entail upfront costs and increased operational expenses. Avoid unnecessary upgrades unless immediate benefits justify the investment, as undoing upgrades is not an option.

In summary, Cities: Skylines II presents both novices and veterans with a wealth of opportunities and challenges in crafting vibrant urban landscapes. By making informed decisions, exercising fiscal prudence, and adapting to evolving city needs, you can lay the foundation for a prosperous and thriving metropolis in the dynamic world of Cities: Skylines II.