Report: SimCity referral marketing suspended pending server fixes

The messy saga of SimCity's launch continues. EA has already committed to adding servers to alleviate the poor online connectivity, but the company is reportedly making less conventional moves as well.

Polygon reports that an e-mail from EA Origin to its Origin LinkShare program members, saying it has "deactivated" its its text links and creative. It goes on to request that partners "please remove any copy promoting SimCity from your website for the time-being."

The memo promises it will continue to pay commissions on SimCity referral sales, but goes on to ask that recipients "please stop actively promoting the game. We will notify you as soon as the SimCity marketing campaigns have been resumed and our promotional links are once again live in the Linkshare interface. We apologize for any inconveniences that this may cause, and we thank you for your cooperation."

EA may be hoping that stemming the flow of new players will help it get a handle on the server troubles, not to mention reduce the number of newly frustrated users.

Internally, Maxis has been frank with the game's shortcomings, according to an internal memo. "I'd like to say that it's not fair - that the game score shouldn't be punished for a server problem. But it is fair," Maxis general manager Lucy Bradshaw wrote. "SimCity is an online game and critics and consumers have every right to expect a smooth experience from beginning to end. I and the Maxis team take full responsibility to deliver on our promise. Trust that we're working as hard as possible to make sure everyone gets to experience the amazing game we built in SimCity."