Cities: Skylines II – Time Scales Guide

An explanation of time scales in-game vs. wall clock time (time in real life).

Guide to Time Scales

Game Time and Speed

1 month game time = 24 hours game time.

  • Game speed 2 is twice as fast as game speed 1.
  • Game speed 3 is twice as fast as game speed 2, and four times as fast as game speed 1.

Game Time vs. Real Time

Compare these game time scales to real time.

Hours

  • 1 hour game time at speed 1 = 3 minutes real time
  • 1 hour game time at speed 2 = 1 minute 30 seconds real time
  • 1 hour game time at speed 3 = 45 seconds real time

Months

  • 1 month game time at speed 1 is 1 hour 12 minutes real time
  • 1 month game time at speed 2 is 36 minutes real time
  • 1 month game time at speed 3 is 18 minutes real time

Years

  • 1 year game time at speed 1 is 28 hours 48 minutes real time
  • 1 year game time at speed 2 is 14 hours 24 minutes real time
  • 1 year game time at speed 3 is 3 hours 36 minutes real time

Example Time Spans

While many city developments—such as advancement progress and construction—can happen quickly, others such as education, wealth, building upgrades, and pollution take place on much longer time scales.

Here are some examples:

Education

Educating a cim from elementary school through university can take 35-60 months depending on your education system, funding, upgrades, etc.

Assuming an intermediate rate of 48 months to full educate a cim:

  • At game speed 1 a cim will be fully educated in roughly 56 hours real time.
  • At game speed 3 a cim will be fully educated in roughly 14 hours real time.

Pollution

  • Air pollution dissipates in a few months (~1 hour real time at game speed 3).
  • Water pollution dissipates in about a year (~3 hours real time at game speed 3).
  • Ground pollution dissipates over multiple years (much longer).

Performance Notes

Game speed to real time conversions above assume that your PC is not overwhelmed by the simulation. If your city grows large enough the simulation may slow down, and the game time / real time conversions above may no longer be accurate.

If your simulation slows down you can adjust Options » General » Performance Preference to favor Simulation Speed.

Egor Opleuha
About Egor Opleuha 7120 Articles
Egor Opleuha, also known as Juzzzie, is the Editor-in-Chief of Gameplay Tips. He is a writer with more than 12 years of experience in writing and editing online content. His favorite game was and still is the third part of the legendary Heroes of Might and Magic saga. He prefers to spend all his free time playing retro games and new indie games.

1 Comment

  1. it all depends on a PC – my 1 hour at the speed 3 lasts 47 seconds and not 45 – at least i know when i can come back from my coffee to see how the city changed after a year 😉

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