Archives for category: Premium characters

Some time ago, Lee sent in this comment (and even further back Schpeen sent in something similar):

How many income-generating characters are there in the game (include all premium characters and those from special events & episode promos)?

Not all characters are income-generating, some are just walking decorations (eg: Mayan God). But I seems to take a much longer time to send everyone to tasks nowadays, with increasing number of characters.

Springfield is certainly getting busy because as of the date of this post there are currently more than 50 playable characters that you need to keep gainfully employed every day (and there are several more on the way). Here’s a list of the characters that have tasks (which means that the Funzos, the Whacking Day snakes, the Leprechaun, some of the Halloween characters, and the Animals and Pets are not included):

The Simpsons: Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa, Grampa (set full)
Churchy Joes: Ned, Reverend Lovejoy
Villains: Mr. Burns, Hank Scorpio, Snake, the Rich Texan
School Workers: Principal Skinner, Willie, Edna Krabappel, Otto
Civil Servants: Chief Wiggum, Mayor Quimby
Business Owners: Apu, Comic Book Guy, Moe, Luigi, Lugash (set full)
C-List Celebrities: Krusty, Kent Brockman, Bumblebee Man, Sideshow Mel, Miss Springfield (set full)
B-List Celebrities: Duffman, Tatum
Oddballs: Cletus, Frink
Squeaky Voice Teen and Moleman: Squeaky Voice Teen, Moleman
Kids: Milhouse, Martin, Ralph
Toughies: Nelson, Kearney, Shauna
Wiseguys: Fat Tony, Legs, Louie
Barflies: Barney
Doctors: Dr. Hibbert, Dr. Nick
Plant Workers: Smithers, Lenny, Carl
Irishmen: Tom O’Flanagan
Oldies: Agnes Skinner
Halloween: Kang

As you’ll notice, some of the character sets are full. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that there’ll be no new characters for the set. As recently happened during Whacking Day, and with the release of Agnes, all that really means is that the developers may reshuffle the existing sets and create a new one. The bottom line is that’s there are now a lot to characters to organize – which means if you think you’re spending longer on the game than you have been in the past, you’re probably right. You are.

But this is all leading somewhere: who would you like to see added to the existing sets in future updates, and what new sets do you think there should be if they can only go in a set that’s full? We know of at least four main characters and 5 minor ones that are on their way in the Squidport expansion and levels 31 and 32 – so, why not think beyond that to level 32, 33, 34 and 35. Maybe someone from EA will see this and bring your favorite character that not there yet into the game.

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There have been a few questions about the Homer Buddha since the Yard Sale update and whether the odds have changed. I’ve checked the files and everything seems to be exactly as it was – nothing seems to have changed. So, here’s a repost on the odds of winning something good (this originally appeared at the end of March).

As the instructions to the Homer Buddha say, your 15 donut spend means that you win a premium item every time. But can you win anything really good, like the Duff Brewery or the Volcano Lair? Well, it turns out you can, although the chances of doing so are actually very, very low.

When you buy the Homer Buddha, your game is doing a little bit of calculating behind the scenes, and generating a random number between 0 and 1 (a bit like a roulette wheel). Each item available through the Homer Buddha has a number assigned to it – a “chance”. You win the item that has the first number that’s greater than the random number the game generates.

So, what are the chances, then, of winning any of those coveted premium characters or a pile of donuts (rather than a fence or a dumpster)? Here’s a list of what you can win and the probability that the Homer Buddha will actually give it to you:

Mystery Box – 9.98%
Bench – 10%
Planter – 10%
Dumpster – 10%
Picket Fence – 10%
Burning Bush – 10%
Orange Tree – 10%
Apple Tree – 10%
Tire Swing – 10%
Squeaky Voice Teen (or 30 donuts if you already have him) – 4%
Hans Moleman (or 60 donuts if you already have him) – 4%
Frink’s Lab (or 150 donuts if you already have it) – 1%
30 donuts – 1%
Tire Fire (or 40 donuts if you already have it) – 0.01%
Springfield Sign (or 170 donuts if you already have it) – 0.004%
Duff Brewery (or 190 donuts if you already have it) – 0.002%
Volcano Lair (or 200 donuts if you already have it) – 0.001%

So, if you’ve been lucky enough to win any of the last 4 items on the list(and I have seen reports), you’ve been very lucky indeed! And if you did, it would certainly justify a bit of Duffman-style partying down!

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This post has been a long time in coming, particularly as Otto is one of my favorite characters. At just 120 donuts, he’s one of the cheaper character plus building combinations – and honestly, one of my favorites. And I really don’t know why it’s taken so long to write about him…

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Before going through the reasons for and against spending donuts on Otto, here is his task list:

Task Length Dollars XP
Smoke Break (inside the bus) 30 minutes $60 15XP
Work on the bus (under the bus) 60 minutes $105 26XP
Jam on the guitar (outside the bus) 4 hours $260 70XP
Get guitar restrung (at King Toot’s) 8 hours $420 105XP
Sleep it off (on top of the bus) 12 hours $600 150XP
Squat in the Brown House 24 hours $1000 225XP

So, just why do I think he might be worth those hard-earned donuts? Here’s some reasons in his favor:

1. He’s a character with a “building” (and I use the term loosely) – but the School Bus makes a great addition to the game. And as an 8×8 square, the bus is very easy to place.
2. At just 120 donuts, he is really the most affordable of the character and building combinations (except perhaps if you decide to buy the Aztec Theater and the Squeaky Voice Teen together).
3. He earns premium rates for all his tasks. While this is true for most premium characters, it certainly makes him a better purchase than Tatum, Barney, and Miss Springfield, who all earn standard rates due to their legacy as event prizes.
4. He comes with a quest (and I’ll be posting on this in a day or so), adding a little additional extra enjoyment to your game while you wait for the next big thing.
5. He helps you to complete the School Workers character set and gain that set completion bonus cash and XP.
6. He uses King Toot’s and is the only character to do so regularly. This helps keep whoever runs the store from going bankrupt. Otto knows how to support local businesses even if his fellow Springfielders have no clue.
7. You’ve already got the school – you need a School Bus.
8. It’s Otto, man!

And here are a few reasons against:

1. He doesn’t interact with other characters and doesn’t have a role to play in any standard quests or tasks (but that’s the same as other premium characters really, so you can see how I’m struggling to come up with reasons not to buy him.
2. While he has a voice, he’s one of the quiestest characters in the game and can be quite difficult to hear.
3. If you don’t have King Toot’s yet, you may want to put off buying him until you do.
4. If you have strict views on game characters using controlled substances, you may want to pass on him.

On balance, though, Otto and the School Bus is a good, relatively affordable purchase that really adds value to your game.

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Do you ever feel like you’re on a losing streak at Springfield Downs? Do you sometimes think that the only good thing to come from the track was Santa’s Little Helper? Then you’re probably not alone – because most players regard Springfield Downs as a bit of a loss-making venture. And the information available in the files supports that, because the odds of winning anything aren’t particularly good.

Some people bet according to the name of the dog – but the game doesn’t work that way. The dogs switch around and are accorded different odds each time they race. Instead, your chance of coming up a winner is tied to odds attached for the current race to the dog you’re betting on.

So, here are your chances of coming out ahead whenever you’re tempted to gamble away your $5000 game dollars at Springfield Downs:

Odds Dollar Winnings XP Winnings Chance
1-2 $6,250 75XP 50%
1-1 $7,500 100XP 20%
2-1 $10,000 150XP 15%
4-1 $15,000 250XP 10%
9-1 $25,000 500XP 5%

And if you lose, you get what the game terms 50 “consolation XP” – which is not that much consolation, really. Just as well it’s game dollars you’re being asked to gamble away and not donuts!

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Just a reminder about the poll on the site this weekend…

As just about everyone reading this blog will know by now, 9 new items were released with the Yard Sale update – they’re all limited time and possibly only available until Monday (although they could be around for a bit longer). 2 of them are available for game dollars, and 7 of them are premium items. And as of Saturday, I’ve now posted on all but 1 of the premium items. Here are the links to those posts:
Should I spend my donuts on Frink’s Robot Dog?
What episode is the Excellence Prize Statue from and should I spend my donuts on it?
What episode is the Inflatable Gorilla and Baboons from and should I spend my donuts on them?
What episode is the Frinkosonic MHV from and should I spend my donuts on it?
What episode is the Giant Grasshopper from and should I spend my donuts on it?
What episode is the Duff Party Bus from and should I spend my donuts on it?
What episode is the Duff-Barney Blimp from and should I spend my donuts on it?

So, here’s the question: imagine that you’re only able to buy 1 of them – which one do you buy? Cast your vote even if you can’t or won’t buy donut items, so that we can help out people making this decision (and that’s why there’s no “None of them” option).

The poll will stay open for the duration of the Yard Sale, but vote early to help others make the right choice.

The Duff Party Bus comes from season 24, episode 6, “A tree Grows in Springfield“. Like all the Yard Sale items, it’s not really a central feature of the episode and only appears outside Moe’s Tavern in one brief scene:

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So is it worth your 50 donuts? Here are a few reasons why it is:

1. It gives you a 2.25% bonus on your cash and XP collections, making it one of the highest bonus-earning premium items in the game. Only the Duff-Barney Blimp, Mount Carlmore, and the Springfield Sign pay out more – and two Party Buses at 100 donuts gives a better bonus percentage per donut spent than the Springfield Sign!
2. It really does look good in your town, as you can see in the screenshot at the end of this post.
3. Like all the Yard Sale items, it’s limited-time – so the chances of ever being able to add it to your town again once the sale is over are very slim.
4. It’s a Duff decoration – and goes nicely with Duffman, the Duff Brewery, and Duff Stadium to really Duff out your town.

And here’s a couple of reasons why it might not be:

1. Like all vehicles except the Respectable Moe Limo, there are no tasks that involve it. Not even Duffman gets to party down on the Duff Party Bus.
2. Because you can’t place vehicles on roads (something I’d like to see change in the future), you can’t park it outside Moe’s Tavern, where it was in the episode it’s promoting.

In the interests of full disclosure, though, the Duff Party Bus was an easy purchase for me. And that’s because – if it’s Duff-branded, I’m probably at the head of the queue. Oh yeah!

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9 new items were released with the Yard Sale update – they’re all limited time and possibly only available until Monday (although they could be around for a bit longer). 2 of them are available for game dollars, and 7 of them are premium items.

I’ve already posted on two of these – the Giant Grasshopper and Frink’s Robot Dog – and I’ll be posting on the rest before the weekend is out. In the meantime, though, here’s a poll designed to help people who are considering which one most justifies a little donut splurge.

So, here’s the question: imagine that you’re only able to buy 1 of them – which one do you buy? Cast your vote, and see what other people think. The poll will stay open for the duration of the Yard Sale, but vote early to help others with making the right choice.

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According to the game information, Frink’s Robot Dog comes from the season 24 episode “Homer Goes To Prep School“. While I don’t have a video that shows Frink with his dog, here’s a video from the ANIMATION on FOX YouTube Channel the out-of-body experience that led Homer to become a doomsday prepper (and you can also see the Inflatable Gorilla and Baboons):


So, is the Robot Dog really worth your 60 donuts? Here are some reasons it is:

1. It’s a dog – and robot or not, that’s a new member for your Animals and Pets character set.

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2. At 60 donuts, it’s much, much cheaper than the other member of the set, Santa’s Little Helper. And you don’t have to lash out on vet fees!

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3. It’s a limited-time character, that’s likely to be no longer available within a few days – and if you don’t buy him, there will always be a Robot Dog-shaped gap in your character set.
4. While it doesn’t have any tasks, it keeps your town looking busy when the characters are doing tasks inside.
5. It does bark when you tap on it, though, and you may be able to get a duet going if ever you can every get it together with Santa’s Little Helper.
6. It’s Frink’s dog – Good Glaven – that’s not enough for you. It’s a dog… and it’s a robot…and it’s Frink’s… It’s a geek’s best friend… Isn’t that enough?

Okay, best move on to the reasons against, then… So here they are:

1. Unfortunately, there are no tasks for the Robot Dog and there is no quest associated with it.
2. None of your characters interacts with it – not even Frink. This makes it exactly the same as Santa’s Little Helper and the Funzos.
3. If you already have Santa’s Little Helper, you don’t gain the $500 or the 10XP that comes with completing a set.

But really, the main reason against the Robot Dog is that, like Santa’s Little Helper and the Funzos, it’s another character that just runs around your town. Still, this is the Yard Sale premium item I’m most convinced about and was happy to buy – but that’s possibly because Frink is one of my favorite characters and I suspect that he’s as much of a completist as I am!

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Miss Springfield was the 10th prize during Whacking Day when, with enough whacking, she was available free. Once Whacking Day was over and the Yard Sale update was released, she joined the ranks of the premium characters at a rather pricey 225 donuts.

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So,if you didn’t win her is she worth the donuts? Here are some reasons why she might be, and some reasons why you may decide to avert your eyes from the sordid goings-on at the Sleep-Eazy Motel. First, the reasons in Miss Springfield’s favor:

1. She’s a female character and, as many people have commented, those are few and far between.
2. The Motel, a bit surprisingly for something that’s meant to be sleazy, has a size, shape and color scheme that makes it a pleasing addition to your game. You can see what it looks like here.
3. She comes with a quest, which adds a bit of extra enjoyment to your game.
4. She has a nice range of tasks, with my favorite being her 60-minute task to open an event (it’s great if she does this while Mayor Quimby is giving a speech). My second favorite is her 3-minute joint task with the Mayor – but there’s only so many times you can send them off to the motel together for their “meeting”.

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And here’s why you may not think she’s not worth the high donut price:

1. She has no voice – which, all things considered, is a probably a good thing, partly due to reason 2…
2. She may be a female character, but she’s certainly a very stereotypical dumb blond. In fact, one of her tasks is to take reading lessons, underlining the game’s own joke that the writer’s don’t know how to write for female characters. But then Homer is not exactly the most positive male role model, either, so there you go…
3. As she was initially free, her tasks only earn you the standard rate, rather than the premium rate that everyone else earns. The same is true of Barney and Tatum.
4. You don’t approve of extra-marital relationships with Mayors or anyone else.

So, she’s a nice character to have, but it’s questionable whether she’s actually worth the 225 donuts that you’re being asked to hand over.

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The addition of the Open-Air Stage has revived interest in Channel 6 because, like the Open-Air Stage (and Cletus’ Farm), you invest money to make money. The great thing about Channel 6, though, is that with the right combination of items it has what’s possibly the most lucrative tasks in the game for their duration.

When you first build Channel 6, you have just two programing options, as you can see below:

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Once you unlock the weather station, a game dollars decoration that unlocks as part of your Channel 6 quest, though, you get one more:

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At this point, premium characters and items unlock more programming options for you. The Worldwide Broadcast Dish at 30 donuts unlocks the Worldwide News program:

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And the Channel 6 News Van at 40 donuts lets you do a 4-hour live news report that earns as much as the free 8 hour task:

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And if you add Bumblebee Man at 60 donuts, you get Channel Occho as a 24-hour program which lets you invest $2200 dollars to earn $5000 (and Bumblebee man has a task at the Channel 6 as well):

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Channel 6 has certainly proved a useful building for me, and one that has helped me build up cash for when I really need it. It’s just a matter of remembering to set the programming, though.

The update doesn’t seem to have fixed the glitch affecting many of the joint tasks – and that means that the level 29 task for Agnes and Comic Book Guy to go on a date is also affected. I’ll, tell you what you can do for this particular task in a moment because it’s relatively easy to deal with, but first a recap…

The glitch was first noticed right back at the beginning of Whacking Day, and you can see a post on that here. It became a bit more frustrating when the Rich Texan couldn’t stay on his mechanical bull (as the task is so long and he’s a premium character) and appeared again with Legs and Louie’s level 28 task to interrogate a squealer. You can read about the tasks affected by this glitch here, where you can also see a video that Mike made illustrating the problem, which I’m reposting below:


It seems that joint tasks are likely to be interrupted by a few things – building, decorating and cracking eggs are the main culprits, although snake whacking can sometimes cause the task to stop as well. And it seems that some tasks involving props, like the Rick Texan and his mechanical bull and some of the performances on the Open Air Stage, are affected in the same way.

The easy solution where the task is short, like Agnes and Comic Book Guy’s date, is to make setting up the task the last thing you do before you exit the game, and then to go and do something else for the two hours it takes to complete. When you return to your game, it should have finished normally. You could always spend donuts to speed over the task, I suppose, but this way is just a little easier and doesn’t require any expense.

Hopefully, this will all be resolved with the App Store/Google Play update we should get once Whacking Day is finally over.

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The Open Air Stage is available as part of the level 29 update and is now officially one of my favorite buildings!

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It works just like Channel 6 and Cletus’ Farm – you spend money to make money. But what makes it better than either of these two buildings is that it also gives some of your characters something extra to do.

To unlock a performance, a required character just needs to be free and in his/her regular costume. How much you need to invest depends on both the length of the task and the number of characters involved. Your return depends on the number of characters involved and whether the task is performed in whole or part by a premium character. Here’s a handy chart:

Task Time Character(s) Investment Reward
Lisa’s Sax Solo 60 minutes Lisa $25 $145/30XP
Krusty Standup 2 hours Krusty $40 $240/45XP
The Be Sharps 3 hours Homer / Skinner / Apu / Barney $175 $1055/245XP
Willie on the Pipes 4 hours Willie $60 $350/80XP
The Skinner Sisters 10 hours Principal Skinner / Agnes Skinner $230 $1385/300XP
Sideshow Opera 16 hours Sideshow Mel $165 $990/220XP
Man Being Hit By Football: The Musical 24 hours Moleman $220 $1320/250XP

Lisa’s, Willie’s and Moleman’s performances are pretty much what you see in their regular tasks. But, here are the others (you’ll have to forgive my undecorated park – that will come soon). First, Krusty and his standup:

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Here’s Sideshow Mel:

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And here are the Skinner Sisters:

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And, finally, the Be Sharps:

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So, the bottom line on the Open Air Stage is this: it’s well worth the donuts for those who are at level 29; it’s an especially good purchase for those who have Barney, Moleman, and Sideshow Mel as well; and if you’re at a lower level, you may want to hold off for a while until you can really make use of it.

And if you’re easily tempted into additional premium spending, consider this one carefully – it could well be a “gateway” building to more premium expenditure!

It would be great if all the limited time items and characters that newer players missed were made available again. Some of these include:

– Kang
– Witch Marge (with her ability to speed up crops)
– Devil Ned Flanders
– Mr Plow
– Mayan Homer
– Santa Homer
– Cool Homer
– The Cool Brown House
– The Duff Racer
– The Cemetery
– The Pet Cemetery
– The Super Collider and the Black Hole
– The Bad Dream House
– The Mausoleum
– The Ray Gun
– The Heck House skin for the Church
– Shauna
– Howard’s Flowers
– Phineas Q. Butterfat’s
– Sir Putt-a-lot’s
– Tom O’Flanagan
– O’Flanagan’s Pub
– The Leprechaun
– Fruit-Bat-Man
– Gorgeous Grampa
– Respectable Moe

There’s more, but you get the idea (and after Whacking Day, Ninja Homer, Gymnastic Lisa, and Bare-Chested Willie will almost certainly join the list and possibly Miss Springfield and Tatum, too).

The answer, unfortunately, is that no one except EA knows for sure. I hope so, though, and believe that there’s a strong possibility that some, although maybe not all, of these items will be available at a later date – and now that Fat Tony is back and we know that Kang is on the way again later this year, the prospects are certainly rosier than they ever have been.

However, if they do become available, it’s likely that anything that wasn’t free first time round will probably be premium items available for donuts only should they return. And months from now, be patient when people ask how they can get for free all those great prizes you earned through your Whacking Day blood, sweat and tears.

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A couple of months ago, I wrote a post highlighting that certain decorations give your characters additional tasks. The limited time Limo available as part of the Respectable Moe episode promotion is a good reason to update it and try to produce a definitive version.

Decorations not only make your town look nice. Like Moe’s Limo, they sometimes give your characters extra tasks to do, as well. So, what are those value-adding decorations, and which of your characters get those extra tasks?

Regular Decorations:

Decoration Character Task Length
Kiddie Pool Homer Lounge in the pool 6 hours
Tree Skinner Go Bird-watching 24 hours
Tree Lisa Read a book 45 seconds
Shrub Moe Spy on Midge 12 hours
Snapdragons Martin Smell the roses 10 minutes
Bench Grampa Simpson Take a nap / Feed the birds 6 hours / 8 hours
Dumpster Cletus Dig through garbage 12 hours
Gazebo Lisa, Martin, Principal Skinner, Comic Book Guy, Sideshow Mel, Professor Frink Attend a Mensa meeting 3 hours
Lawn Chair Kent Brockman Relax 1 hour
Water Shauna (no longer available) Tease the ducks 8 hours
Water Legs and Louie Interrogate a squealer 1 hour

Premium Decorations:

Decoration Character Task Length
Limo (limited-time) Moe Fun in the Limo 1 hour
Hot Tub Fat Tony Relax in the Hot Tub 10 hours
Piece of Crap Car Nelson Shoot B-B gun 30 minutes
Cannon Sideshow Mel Shoot from a cannon 30 minutes

It’s also worth mentioning that the Channel 6 News Van and the Worldwide Satellite Dish give extra tasks for Channel 6.

If there’s anything I missed, let me know.

Update: I haven’t included Gymnastic Lisa’s Balance Beam or Ninja Homer’s Practice Snake as they come as part of a set with the character (although buying more Practice Snakes gices Ninja Homer even more snakes to acrobatically whack).

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The Snake Rocks, Snake Stump and the Hollow Snake Trunk do much more than just produce snakes. It’s something a few readers have noticed and while I’ve mentioned it in comments, I hadn’t realized that I’d never done a post on the best-kept secret about the snake-generating premium items until this comment came in from @Landaasen:

The snake rocks, stump and trunk are all 2.5% multipliers (I took them in and out of inventory while collecting white houses, and it seems about right). This is a pretty important detail, especially for those who are a bit behind and getting sweaty, and considering a purchase. The question is why this is “secret”; if it is permanent, or just a bonus effect during the Whacking Days. Considering the cost, this should be permanent, making them attractive multipliers.

I have a feeling that the bonus multiplier effect will be permanent – as they already carry a 2.5% bonus multiple I can’t see them suddenly changing to Vanity-rating decorations once Whacking Day is over. And that means the snake-generating decoration do three things – they generate snakes, they give your friends an extra item to tap on to collect cash (during Whacking Day, at least), and they also earn you an extra 2.5% on money and XP earned through rent and jobs.

Update: It may be that you don’t get this multiplier effect from the free Snake Rocks.

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With Fat Tony now a permanent character, the question of why certain characters are voiced and why others are voiceless has come up again – so he’s a repost from a couple of months ago:

I’m not sure I can answer that exact question of ehy some characters have voices and some don’t (but I’m sure it has a lot to do with royalties and licensing). But I can tell you that the only game characters with voices are those voiced by the 6 lead actors in the series – Dan Castellaneta, Julie Kavner, Nancy Cartwright, Yeardley Smith, Hank Azaria, and Harry Shearer.

So here is a list of the lead actors and some of the characters they play, so you know which characters are likely to have a voice and which will probably be forever silent:

Dan Castellaneta
Homer Simpson
Grampa Simpson
Krusty the Clown
Barney Gumble
Groundskeeper Willie
Mayor Quimby
Hans Moleman
Sideshow Mel
Itchy
Kodos
Gil Gunderson
Squeaky Voice Teen
Rich Texan
Louie

Julie Kavner
Marge Simpson
Patty Bouvier
Selma Bouvier
Jacqueline Bouvier

Nancy Cartwright
Bart Simpson
Nelson Muntz
Todd Flanders
Ralph Wiggum
Kearney

Yeardley Smith
Lisa Simpson

Hank Azaria
Apu Nahasapeemapetilon
Moe Szyslak
Chief Wiggum
Comic Book Guy
Lou
Carl Carlson
Dr. Nick
Snake Jailbird
Professor Frink
Kirk Van Houten
Luigi Risotto
Bumblebee Man
Captain Horatio McCallister
Superintendent Chalmers
Cletus Spuckler
Disco Stu
Duffman
Legs

Harry Shearer
Mr. Burns
Waylon Smithers
Ned Flanders
Principal Skinner
Otto Mann
Lenny Leonard
Reverend Lovejoy
Dr. Hibbert
Kent Brockman
Rainier Wolfcastle
Scratchy
Dr. Marvin Monroe
Kang
Judge Snyder
Sanjay Nahasapeemapetilon
God

You’ll notice that Milhouse, Edna Krabappel, Hank Scorpio, Fat Tony and Shauna are not on the list – they’re all voiced by a supporting cast member or a guest actor. And for that reason, they don’t talk at all in the game.

You can see a more extensive list of who voices which character here: http://www.simpsoncrazy.com/lists/voices

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Ever since the Whacking Day update, a number of regular tasks have created problems for a number of people. What seems to happen is that you set the character or characters on the task, go and do something else in the game, and when you come back, they’re walking around aimlessly as if you’ve never given them the task to do. The characters and tasks affected seem to be:

  • Legs and Louie intimidating a squealer
  • Smithers and Burns exercising
  • Bart running away with Kang
  • The Rich Texan riding the Mechanical Bull

I’ve written about the Rich Texan’s problems here and Mike has even made a video about it:

But it’s quite apparent that not everyone is experiencing the same thing. For example, while the Rich Texan won’t stay on his bull in my game, Legs and Louie have no problem intimidating the squealer.

Apart from spending donuts on speeding up the task, this isn’t an easy one to resolve. Some people have got over it through sheer persistence, or by closing the game for the duration of the task. But it only seems to arise if you start the characters on the task, then go and do something else in the game – like moving, building or breaking eggs.

If anyone has come up with any other solutions, please let us all know.

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Following the post on whether Gil will be back soon, a number of newer players have quite reasonably asked about who Gil is in the game and what he does. Here’s a partial repost from earlier this month, with some additions:

Gil Gunderson, Springfield’s hapless salesman, is a temporary character in the game and only ever appears for a few days to offer special deals on promotional items that will help him feed his kids. He first appeared in the game back in December last year and, since then, he’s been back only 3 more times. Here’s the history of Gil’s deals:

1. Christmas Special – 19-22 December, 2012
Santa’s Village and Santa Homer for the standard price of 200 donuts, but with a Holiday Tree worth 75 donuts thrown in.

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2. Donut Offer – 23-28 December, 2012
Up to a 25% discount on day-old donuts. You can read all about this particular deal here.

3. A Sign and Doom – 11-14 January, 2013
The Volcano Lair and the Springfield Sign for 250 donuts. As the normal price of the two combined is 370 donuts, this was probably one of the best of Gil’s deals to date.

4. Nerd Farm – 22-25 February, 2013
Frink’s Lab plus a Homer Buddha and $50,000 bonus for 250 donuts, which Gil claimed to be have a 490 donut value. You can see my thoughts on this here. (For some players, this deal seems to have been called “The Science Fund”.)

Gil appears to both Apple and Android players – and in fact his reappearance in the Android version of the game shortly after its launch in February seems to have been responsible for many Android players’ first experience of unprompted crashing!

It’s been a while since we’ve seen Gil, and I fully expect him to return before long. And with the Duff Stadium as a Whacking Day prize, if his deal doesn’t involve Duffman, then EA are missing a trick!

P.S.: The sad thing about Gil’s salesman role is that we may never see him as a permanent characater in the game.

Gil

Just a reminder of one of this week’s polls – even more relevant thanks those 12 free donuts from EA. The poll asks what building/character combination would make the best first donut buy (and, yes, it probably should have included Squeaky Voice Teen and the Aztec Theater as, even though they’re separate items, they work well together)?

As you’ll see, Duffman is in the lead, at least in part due to his new Duff Stadium task (which I’m pretty sure he’ll get to keep after Whacking Day). But, there’s also a groundswell of support for Otto and Frink.

If you haven’t voted yet, choose your favorite and help those first-time buyers of premium characters decide what they should do. And if you want to see how the voting turned out on the cheaper premium characters, take a look here.

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Once you’ve made the 6th prize level and built the Duff Stadium, there’s a very short quest featuring Homer and, if you have him, Duffman. Don’t worry if you don’t have Duffman, though – having or not having a premium character has no impact on your progress through the free game.

So, here’s the walkthrough of the Duff Stadium quest, America’s Former Pastime:

1. America’s Former Pastime Part 1 All you have to do is collected 4,250 whacked snakes and you’ll win Duff Stadium (all!):

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You should be able to find it in your Inventory:

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All you need to do then is place it and wait for the 24 hours it takes to build. Keep Homer free as it finishes.

2. America’s Former Pastime Part 2 Homer is more than a little happy about this:

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Homer: I can’t wait to smell the grass . . . after I drink too much and fall over the railing onto it.
And Homer goes off to the Stadium to spend 24 hours drinking lots of beer and yellling at the Umpire.

The quest ends there unless you have Duffman. If you have him, there’s just one more part to go (I told you it was a short quest):

3. America’s Former Pastime Part 3 Homer isn’t the only Springfield citizen who’s overjoyed by the re-construction of the Duff Stadium:

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Duffman takes the opportunity to try out some new promotional tech at the Stadium in true Duffman style for the next 2 hours (reminding everyone of why he’s coming top of this week’s premium character poll here).

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