10 Cities: Skylines Mandatory Mods

One of the defining features of Cities: Skylines is the extensive mod support Colossal baked into the title. Right on the main menu screen there is a Mod Loader option, which includes a couple of handy default mods (such as unlimited cash and all items unlocked, for the creative souls out there who don’t want as much of the city sim aspect of the game, I guess), but also integrates the Steam Workshop into the game. Within moments of Cities hitting Steam, there were mods being made – some people are even trying to make something of a living off of the creation of in-game assets.

However, one of the downsides of Steam Workshop, particularly for Cities, is a lack of curation and efficient organization. Here, then, are the 10 mods I think you should absolutely utilize to make the quality of play in Cities a lot better (not that it is bad to begin with, but still):

  1. All Spaces Unlockable

    • This is pretty self explanatory once you start playing, but for those who haven’t taken the plunge yet: in each city you start, by default you are able to expand up to a maximum of 9 tiles. Now, each of these tiles is fairly large, and 9 of them in a square means you can already create a pretty decent metropolis – but bigger is better, right? With this mod, you can ultimately purchase all 25 tiles on the map, essentially recreating Rhode Island if you want to.
  2. Extended Public Transport UI

    • Reporting tools are great and the stock UI in Cities does a half decent job of giving you the necessary aspects of information needed to run your city. However, one of the areas in which Cities is really skimpy on the details is public transit. With this mod, you can better visualize what lines you have running and I have used it to great effect myself in making public transit a thing that people actually are able to use in my cities.
  3. Extended Road Upgrade

    • Another absolutely necessary improvement over the stock game, Extended Road Upgrade allows such things as switching the direction of one-way traffic on roads you’ve already laid down. As a novice in the Way of One philosophy of roads, this saved me countless times.
  4. DP’s Beautification Sets

    • There are lots of ‘beautification’ things out there in the wild, but DP’s set of commercial and residential assets really add a lot to the look of your city. No, they don’t really do anything gameplay wise, but they do make screenshots and other visuals a lot more interesting with additional variety in the structures that define your skyline.
  5. Dynamic Resolution Mod

    • This is another visual orientated thing, but it really does make a difference in the sharpness and fidelity of your city, especially if (like me) you enjoy zooming down to see your city from a non-God-like perspective.
  6. Tree Brush

    • In the default game, you can only place trees one at a time – which is to say, you’ll never place trees in the empty spaces of your city. With this tool, you can simply paint the trees on (similar to the paint brush in use for defining districts), and your city can be a lot greener as a result.
  7. Automatic Bulldoze

    • Abandoned buildings, or burned out husks of buildings if you forgot to place an extra Fire House or three, are a bane to the wealth of your city. They bring down property values and I’ve actually had a city district spiral into a Detroit-like miasma of abandoned buildings when I didn’t pay attention and knock those old buildings down immediately. With Automatic Bulldoze, you no longer have to worry about that.
  8. Auto Save

    • Yeah, so, turns out the team that made Cities: Skylines was really small – and one of the results of low manpower hours available was that the game shipped with no autosave functionality. Thankfully, someone made a mod for that.
  9. Automatic Emptying

    • Similar to automatic bulldoze, automatic emptying takes care of waste management for you when landfills, well, fill. Another micromanagement task eliminated means more time figuring out traffic problems – yay!
  10. No Pillars

    • And speaking of traffic problems, No Pillars allows you to build stacked roads and rails – meaning you can finally recreate the El from Chicago for more effective public transport. You can also use it to build otherwise impossible dreams of interchanges, roundabouts, and overpasses, saving you a lot of heartache.



There's a mod that lets yet deactivate traffic lights at intersections too... great for certain highway spots

proceduraldave moderator

@ausj3w3l is there really? I hadn't seen that....almost seems like cheating though! There are a number of really silly mods that basically take all challenge out of the game.


When are you doing another TMC?

proceduraldave moderator

@butabi @scaurus hey I'm glad you liked them! Unfortunately I'm not a part of TMC anymore though :( 

I'll definitely update this blog if I get a new gig somewhere though, so stay tuned!