Curses City is a simple Sim City style game written in C++ and using ncurses to display an ASCII UI in a terminal.
In the above demo a power plant (W) is built and then a series of streets (- | +) and residential, commercial, and industrial zones (. . .) are laid out.
As time goes on (top right) some of the residential, commercial, and industrial lots are developed (x x x), or fall back to their undeveloped state.
Developed lots provide income in the form of taxes as time progresses. This money is used to further expand the city and pay for improvements.
How likely a lot is to be developed and how much tax it can provide is determined by the land value. This calculation takes into account factors such access to roads, population, pollution, and so on.
This simulation is essentially a moderately complex cellular automata. See Conway's Game of Life for an example of a very simple one.
Source code available at https://github.com/cbabuska/curses_city
(Curses City was developed in 2010)