In fact, one of the frustrating things about our playable demo is that, as limited as it is (including a 30-minute time limit), there's almost no opportunity to really understand how the different classes get along. The press releases talk about "successfully integrating the groups into harmonious neighborhoods", and how poorly planned neighborhoods can "cause citizens to turn to crime, harassing and harming one another". So obviously this aspect is kinda important to gameplay (which also makes a sharp break with SimCity), but the demo doesn’t offer any hints about how this works.
Other ways in which City Life distinguishes itself is that city planning isn't grid based, water, power and waste management are rather simplified, and there’s no zoning to speak of, all of which makes for a more free-form sim.
Lastly, the game offers six different kinds of environments, from temperate zones to harsh deserts, for a total of 22 maps, and will also include a map editor (although again, no clue from the demo as to how environment affects gameplay).
We'll reveal the real meat and potatoes behind City Life with our coming-soon review. Until then, we remain quietly confident that this will easily satiate our urges to get all Rudy Guiliani on some virtual citizenry.