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SimCity 2013 Mining Specialization Guide – Coal, Ore, Metals HQ, Smelting


An ideal city should have all necessary resources to facilitate comfortable and productive lives for its citizens, but it’s not always possible to integrate each and every little thing in your city.

For this very purpose, there are City Specializations in SimCity, which allow your city to focus on one specific field in which they can thrive in.

There are many city specializations, but in major, you can specialization in one of four different types.

Great Works require cities with various specializations to work together, so sometimes it’s a good idea to go for a specialization that is absent around your neighborhood, even if it means sacrificing the natural resources in your place.

For more help on SimCity, read our Drilling, Mass Transit and Electronics Specialization Guide.

First of, let’s look at the Mining Specialization.

SimCity Mining Specialization

If you’re looking to kick-start your city pretty quickly, then the mining specialization is the ideal choice. While other specializations require a lot of initial investment and time, mining will get you access to quick earnings by selling goods to the global market.

Your power requirements will also be met, as coal extraction will allow you to free up resources and keep your plants alive.

However, mining has comparatively less long-term profits as compared to the rest. Additionally, your region may already have a city that specializes in mining, since it is much easier to initiate than the others.

The major drawback of the mining is the amount of pollution it spreads. This pollution is not localized to your city, but the entire region itself. This will damage all the cities’ Health, and may lead to indirect expenses and slow growth.

Another disadvantage is that mining requires low wealth and uneducated workers, which will pay fewer taxes, and hence reduce your net income.

On the other hand, the mining specialization and its associated factories have much lower operational costs, and also reducing the requirement of having schools and a university in your area.

When to Choose Mining
It’s important to know of the natural resources available in our region, specifically in the space where you’ll build the city. You should check the Data Maps to search for ores and coal.

The dark areas will indicate the places where coal is buried, and this is the place you want to set aside for your mining factories.

You should also plan your road network accordingly. Another thing to consider is where exactly the wind blows. Make sure that you build the mine away from the city, and in a manner that the winds blow the pollution caused by your mines away from the residential areas instead of towards them.

Coal Mines

  • Production Rate: 24 tons/day
  • Cost: 22,500
  • Upkeep: 150/hr

Requirements: Power, Water, 7 Industrial buildings, and coal underneath the land

Coal Mines are perhaps the most essential facilities for the mining specialization, since they concern the extraction of coal, which can be used in power plants, sold to the local industry, or even sold to the global market. This makes for fast profit.

You should make sure you have sufficient delivery trucks and coal shafts to ensure that your production rate does not reach full capacity. If it does, the mine will stop until the right amount of coal is hauled by the trucks.

Make sure you consider upgrading your Truck Garage and Coal Shaft modules:

Coal Delivery Truck Garage

  • Adds 1 delivery truck (5t capacity) to deliver coal faster
  • Maximum 4 per Coal Mine
  • Cost: 10,000
  • Upkeep: 50/hr

Coal Shaft

  • Increases rate of coal extraction by 24t/day
  • Maximum 4 per Coal Mine
  • Cost: 14,000
  • Upkeep: 25/hr

Ore Mines

  • Production Rate: 24 tons/day
  • Cost: 22,500 Simoleons
  • Upkeep: 175/hr

Requirements to unlock: Power, Water, 7 Industrial buildings, ore underneath the land

If you’ve got reserves of shiny ores and metals buried deep inside the grounds of your city, then consider building an Ore Mine. These mines will extract ores, which can be refined in a Smelting Factory to create some nice metals and alloys.

These materials can then be sold or used to build Great Works, giving you plenty of advantage for the long term.

Like Coal Mines, you’ll need your Ore Mines to have a proper delivery system, in which case you should consider improving your Delivery Truck Garage module.

In addition, sending out more Ore Shafts will greatly increase the number of tons of ore extracted everyday, which is an absolute must to increase the rate of your profits.

Ore Delivery Truck Garage

  • Adds 1 delivery truck (5t capacity) to deliver ore faster
  • Maximum of 4 per Ore Mine
  • Cost: 10,000
  • Upkeep: 50/hr

Ore Shaft

  • Increases rate of ore extraction by 24t/day
  • Maximum of 4 per Ore Mine
  • Cost: 16,000
  • Upkeep: 40/hr

Metals HQ

  • Cost: 37,500
  • Upkeep: 450/hr

Requirements to unlock: Mine at least 96 tons of coal or ore in a single day

The Metals HQ is basically your big, fancy building that represents your progression as a mining specialized city. It might seem like an aesthetic addition, but the Metals HQ actually has huge benefits, and is the main source of earning advanced mining facilities like the Smelting Factory and Advanced Coal Mine.

The HQ will grow larger and larger (eventually turning into an impressive skyscraper) as you sell more and more raw ore and coal.

You’ll want to make sure you build it in a spacious area, as the associated modules will add additional smaller division buildings alongside it.

The following modules exist for your HQ:

Commerce Division

  • Increases export rates of coal and ore
  • Cost: 200,000
  • Upkeep: 400/hr

Engineering Division

  • Unlocks the ability to build an Advanced Coal Mine
  • Cost: 200,000
  • Upkeep: 400/hr

Smelting Division

  • Unlocks the ability to build a Smelting Factory
  • Cost: 200,000
  • Upkeep: 400/hr

Smelting Factory

  • Production Rate: 24 tons/day
  • Cost: 54,500
  • Upkeep: 300/hr
  • Requirements to unlock: Smelting Division modular built at a Metals HQ

The Smelting Factory is the big advancement that’ll get you lots of money. Raw ores can be sold and used in the industries, but they aren’t as valuable as refined metals and alloys.

The Smelting Factory converts your ores into usable metals and alloys, which have much higher value, and also much better application.

These alloys and metals can then be shipped to Trade Depots, Trade Ports, Great Works sites, and Processor Factories.

The Smelting Factory is also extremely important if you are running out of raw material in your region. You can still buy raw ores from the global market and refine it in your precious Smelting Factory, and then sell off or used your refined alloys and metals.

In order to ensure that you are making both alloys and metals, and have the required amount of trucks to ship them in time, consider getting the modules of the Smelting Factory as quickly as possible.

It’s thus recommended that you build the Smelting Factory once you have sufficient finances to buy the modules at the same instant as well.

Smelting Delivery Truck Garage

  • Adds one delivery truck per upgrade
  • Cost: 10,000
  • Upkeep: 50/hr
  • Capacity: 2 tons
  • Maximum Modules: 4

Metal Furnace

  • Allows for creating refined metals from raw ores
  • Cost: 21,000
  • Upkeep: 50/hr
  • Production Rate: 24 tons/day
  • Maximum Modules: 4

Alloy Furnace

  • Cost: 36,000
  • Upkeep: 150/hr
  • Production Rate: 24 tons/day
  • Maximum Modules: 3

Advanced Coal Mine

  • Production Rate: 96 tons/day
  • Cost: 60,000
  • Upkeep: 400/hr
  • Requirements to unlock: Engineering Division at the Metals HQ

The Advanced Coal Mine is the ultimate choice of factory for a mining specialized city which is extracting coal. This facility will greatly hasten the rate at which you extract coal, which will directly increase the rate at which you earn profits.

Additionally, this is a great way to keep your coal power plants running, guaranteeing now deficiency in the power output of your plants.

The Advanced Coal Mine’s rapid production rate must be met with adequate amount of trucks to load the coal into. For this, you should consider improving your Delivery Truck module.

Additionally, you can make your coal extraction even faster by adding more coal shafts.

Heavy Coal Delivery Truck Garages

  • Increase the number of trucks to haul the amount of coal being extracted
  • Cost: 20,000
  • Upkeep: 50/hr
  • Truck Capacity: 2 tons
  • Maximum Modules: 10

Advanced Coal Shaft

  • Cost: 50,000
  • Upkeep: 250/hr
  • Production Rate: 48 tons/day
  • Maximum Modules: 8

How To Manage Mining Facilities

As stated earlier, one of the major problems with mining facilities is that they pollute a lot. Another major problem is that mining areas tend to be more susceptible to fires, though this problem doesn’t only hold for this specialization.

It’s thus recommended that you create a Fire Station nearby if any sort of emergency breaks out. Fires tend to spread, and if the Fire Fighters are stuck in traffic or at the other corner of the city, then you’ll face a substantial amount of damage before you can put the fire out. No one wants that, do they?

Another important thing to keep in mind is that you are targeting low-wealth workers in the area. These workers will mostly be uneducated, which means that you will not require a university in your city.

However, I’d recommend against that, since the School of Science in the University will ensure your capability to participate in creating Great Works, which are long-term projects that you should be building towards from the start of the game.

Overall, mining is a brilliant specialization if you want to start things off quickly, and can give your city good sustenance for a long time even after your resources are depleted, thanks to facilities like the Smelting Factory.