App Junkie is a regular feature where Brihanna Watson, self-confessed app junkie, takes a look at an app that has got her attention. She will dissect the app in her own style, but still keep to the rigorous testing policy of the site. If you are indeed an ‘app junkie’, and find yourself spending an inordinate amount of cash on apps that you never touch more than a couple of times, then Brihanna could save you a lot of pain and money by seeing if those apps that look like sparkling little gems in their App Store descriptions are really as tempting as they appear. Today: Tiny Tower.
Games, games, games. Since the immense success of Angry Birds, the App Store is flooded with games. Some good, some bad. It has turned this little gadget we call a phone into a portable gaming system. And with most at .99, or even free, it’s a great alternative to buying a system for on the go. Nimblebit is the creator of some great games on the iPhone, and they just keep getting better. Their newest is Tiny Tower.
Tiny Tower is a Sims like game that lets you manage – wait for it – a tiny tower! You are the manager and must run the building, tenants and businesses alike. That means keeping tenants happy, stocking shelves and employing those tenants to run your businesses. Starting with a tutorial level, you are given a lobby and shown how to build a new floor level, the first being a residence. You can speed up the building process by paying extra Towerbux, tips you earn for bonuses. Once built you will have citizens, referred to as “Blitzens”, come to the building to rent out your residences. You control the elevator that helps the Blitzens get to their destinations in the tower. The key here is to keep these little guys busy so your tower runs smoothly.
I really like how each Blitzen has a personality. They are given a rating system on their perfect job. Put them in a lower rated occupation and that Blitzen will not be very productive. Since the businesses rely on your Blitzen’s stocking and service abilities, placement is vital. Their preferences and demand of business type make you the one to balance those decisions of what other type of floor to add and who you put there. You can also see what is on your Blitzen’s minds by reading their status updates in the BitBook. There are some hilarious things in there and their insights really help.
The graphics have a fun old school feel. Very simple and 8-bit like. The little characters are similar but just enough color and accessory differences to tell them apart. You earn money pretty simply which keeps game play interesting and easy to continue to upgrade. The tower will also get VIP visitors that can increase business or even speed up construction. Playing the game will definitely earn you more bonuses and keep your tower running, but putting it down doesn’t hurt either. The tower will continue to run and notify you when to restock items.
Tiny Tower is definitely a fun time waster and the maintenance and options keep you engaged. Like Nimblebit’s Pocket Frogs, the changing environment keeps you coming back for more. At the intro price of free, it’s definitely not to be passed up.
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