Archives for posts with tag: update

My apologies to those who saw this post a moment ago and then found it mysteriously deleted. It wasn’t EA – it was me. I realized that it wasn’t protected by the usual spoiler tags when I reblogged it from the original source. And thanks to neoclassic70 for finding it.

So here it is, after the image. It is very, very, spoilery, so continue at your own risk…

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That’s difficult to say. Most episode promotions end the Monday following the episode, but this is a bit bigger than the usual episode promotions. In fact, it seems more like the Winter update, which was launched on January 11 and ran through until January 28 (that update included Mr. Plow and some Simpsons snowmen and came with level 25).

To try to answer this question, I went into the files to look for an end date – and the only one I could find was May 29. Now, this could simply be a placeholder, or it could be the real end date. To me it makes sense as a real end date as it follows the month on / month off basis that Tapped Out events have kept to since September last year – and it also supports the educated guess I’ve made that the Squidport event will arrive at the end of May and continue through June (and before anyone asks, there’s a post coming on this – but type “seashore” into the search bar at the bottom of the page if you want to see what I’ve written on it so far).

If EA gives the usual episode-promotion “one-day left” warning, I’ll certainly let you know. But the short answer to the question that heads this post is that we can’t be sure at this stage when the Yard sale will end – it may be Monday, or it may be that it run through until as late as May 29.

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Some time ago, I wrote about the Conform-o-meter and how it works (you can read the posts here and here if you missed them). It’s an important part of the game because getting it to the maximum 5 stars will boost the cash and XP you collect from everything in the game by 5%. And this week, I dug deep into the files to look for a definitive answer on which building contributes to which rating:

  • Part 1 from the beginning of the game up to Moe’s Tavern is here
  • Part 2, from Jakes Unisex Hair Palace up to the Skinner House is here
  • A post on the premium buildings is here
  • A post on the limited-time buildings here (Duff Stadium, the Springfield Coliseum, and the Sleep-Eazy Motel can be found here as they were all limited-time at the time – however, their contribution status did not change with the Yard Sale update!)
  • A post on the points needed in each category at each level is here

You can open up your Conform-o-meter and check where you currently are with your Consumerism rating by tapping on the stars at the bottom left of your main screen.

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You keep your Consumerism rating high, and help to maximize your conformity bonus, by having enough shops for your town (or, as the game says, by buying stores for suckers to drop dough). And every shop, whether it’s regular, premium or limited-time, contributes 10 points towards the rating. So what can you build that will help you boost your Consumerism rating? Here’s a list:

Regular Shops:
– Kwik-E-Mart (and the Kwik-E-Mart Franchises)
– Android’s Dungeon
– King Toot’s

Premium Shops:
– Try ‘n’ Save
– Sprawl-Mart

Limited-time Shops:
– House of Evil (Halloween event – no longer available)
– Mapple Store (Christmas/winter event – no longer available)
– Howard’s Flowers (Valentine’s event – no longer available)
– Sir Putt-a-lot’s (Valentine’s event – no longer available)

I was a little surprised in putting together the list – Springfield doesn’t have as many stores as I’d thought it did! And that means that players who missed out on the limited-time buildings or who don’t want to buy premium buildings may have to buy a second or third Kwik-E-Mart to take their rating to its maximum.

But just how many shops do you need to get that 5-star rating at each level? Fortunately, the answer is “not many”, although the release of level 29 raised the bar a bit. Here’s the breakdown:

Level Points Shops Notes
1-6 12 2 You’ll need 1 premium shop to maximize your rating
7-11 36 4 Even with both premium shops, a 5-star rating isn’t possible
12 48 5 You can add one or more Kwik-E-Mart Franchises at this level
13-16 60 6 Even with the premium buildings, you need 3 Kwik-E-Mart franchises
17-28 72 8 If you don’t have most of the limited-time shops, you’ll need at least 1 Kwik-E-Mart Franchise
29 96 10 Even with all the premium and limited-time shops, you’ll need 1 Kwik-E-Mart franchise

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The Inflatable Gorilla and Baboons comes from the same episode as Frink’s Robot Dog: season 24 , episode 9, “Homer Goes To Prep School“. It appears in a dream sequence as Homer has an out-of-body experience following an injury during a fathers’ fight at a children’s fun center. The Gorilla and Baboons are how Homer sees a Santa and Reindeers Christmas decoration while he’s unconscious, as you can see in this video:


Is it worth 30 donuts? Surprisingly, it is, especially when compared to other similarly priced decorations. It offers a 0.75% bonus on all cash and XP collected from jobs and rent – the same as the slightly more expensive Frinkosonic MHV and the Giant Grasshopper. This is also the same amount as the non-limited time Piece-of-crap Car, and slightly more than the Ambulance, which both also cost 30 donuts. However, unlike all the others (with the exception of the Giant Grasshopper), it’s animated and sways gently in the breeze that apparently blows over the device you’re playing the game on.

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As with many of the other Yard Sale items, it’s not an essential purchase, and it’s probably more a matter of how you see it fitting in to your Springfield. Also, as it’s from a dream sequence, it’s not a “real” item, so you may also choose to bypass it for that reason (but then you’d also have to by-pass just about every Halloween building or decoration for the same reason!).

To help you out, here’s a screenshot of the Inflatable Gorilla and Baboons outside my Duff Stadium, where I’ve also put the Duff-Barney Blimp:

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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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There’s a glitch with the update that seems to be affecting Tapped Out players in Europe, the Middle East and Asia – and that’s being told by their device that the game is not available in their country. Don’t worry – it is.

For some reason the automatic update is sending you to the US store. But resolving this issue is easy – search up the game in your App Store / Google Play store. You should be able to update directly from there.

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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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The Giant Grasshopper is one of the easiest of the Yard Sale premium items for me to reference as it harks back to an episode that premiered only a couple of weeks ago – “Pulpit Friction”, the eighteenth episode of the 24th season and the 526th episode overall. (Or I thought so until I read Matt’s comment – see the update note below – turns out it’s from “Penny Wiseguys“. As I like the videos, though, I’ll leave them here!)

In the episode I thought it was from but stand corrected about, the Simpsons Family get a new couch – but it’s shipped from New York is full of bed bugs:


The bed bugs spread and attract a plague of grasshoppers that eat them. And then there’s the frogs (and I may have appreciated a giant frog a bit more):


So, it it worth 35 donuts? Well, it does give you 0.75% bonus money and XP on all job and XP collections. And it does have a nice animation. And it is big (much bigger than those Whacking Day Practice Snakes). But there are no tasks associated with it and no characters interact with it. And it just sits there – thankfully, it doesn’t hop around your town.

I’ll admit to being a bit lukewarm on it. I’m a completist (and it is a word), so of course I bought it. But if you’re on a donut budget, you probably won’t need to feel that you’re missing out on something special if you don’t buy it.

Update: Actually, it might be from the Penny Wisequys episode (see matt’s comments below). As my views on the Giant Grasshopper still stand and I like the videos, however, I’ll leave the post as it is. By the way, I’m having trouble referencing some of the items, so if anyone wants to send in something for a post, please be my guest!

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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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One of the game dollar decorations included as part of the Yard Sale is the Laramie Vending Machine. At a price of $3500 it boosts your vanity rating and  gives you 500XP on placement (depending on your bonus multiplier).

Apart from Mrs. Krabappel constantly smoking, the episode reference for this is probably “A Tree Grows in Springfield“. While the Vending Machine didn’t feature in the story, the episode was followed by “Logomania“, a King Kong parody featuring lots of advertising characters and brands from the series. If you missed it, or live in a part of the world where it hasn’t shown yet, you can take a look at this video from the ANIMATION on FOX YouTube channel:

A little bit. This is the dialog from the beginning of the Yard Sale for those who tapped through it too quickly:

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Homer: Except for Apu and Manjula’s octuplets, who age for some reason. Didn’t they used to be younger than Maggie?
Lisa: So, this is our season finale – a fourth wall joke?! Aren’t there any characters or quests? (Note: see here for the Wikipedia article on the fourth wall)
Homer: Well, I guess you could make Lovejoy ride his train for the finale – that kind of fits. And for the episode before it, you could have Carl honor his Icelandic heritage… if you had Carl.
Lisa: I know! What if we sold a bunch of cool premium items from this season’s episodes?
Homer: Pfft. What kind of idiot would want to buy that junk?

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The Yard Sale is likely to run through until Monday at least, although it could be longer. I’ll be going into the files soonish to see if I can find out exactly when. Remember, too, that the period after a big event is usually time to take a breath for a week or two before the next big thing happens. So, now that Whacking Day is finally over, go and reintroduce yourself to your families.

There’s an App update now available that brings Whacking Day to an end and opens up the Yard Sale to celebrate the end of season 24. This an App Store / Google Play update, rather than an in-app update. It now appears to be a required update.

The Yard Sale is all about selling premium items that relate to the season that finishes in the US this weekend. But they’re not the limited-time items that you missed from earlier promotions, unfortunately – it’s all brand-new stuff:

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So that’s two items to buy with game dollars, and 7 new premium items and over the weekend I’ll be posting on each item. As you can see in the screenshots, you can find the Yard sale items gathered together behind a new “24” icon at the bottom of your build menu.

There’s one more thing: the Springfield Coliseum and Tatum, the Duff Stadium, and Miss Springfield and the Sleep-Eazy Motel are all now permanently available as premium items:
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The yard sale, as an episode promotion, will probably last until Monday.

It shouldn’t be long before our towns are snake-free. It’s already the 16th, the last day of Whacking Day, in many parts of the world – but the event is scheduled to end when it’s Thursday 16th in the US.

So, what time exactly will it end? I’ve scanned the files, and there’s no time given – the information still includes false end dates (that are clearly identified as false). But 8am and midnight appear to have been the most popular end times for past events and promotions, with the major events (Valentines, Christmas and Haloween) all showing a midnight finish time, and everything since the beginning of March, including St. Patrick’s Day, showing an 8am finish time.

Looking back over the posts on this blog following updates to the game, I have a suspicion that this means that the game is running on Central time US – and if that’s the case, Whacking Day could finish at any time between 8am Central on the 16th and 8am Central on the 17th. I’ll be watching carefully to try and get a fix on the timing.

And finally, Happyhoney27 sent this comment through today:
Well, it’s 16th May tomorrow T, do you get a feeling of déjà vu coming on?

There’s a definite sense of déjà vu.

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I just came across something interesting in the files – a correction to the Sideshow Bob script that explains why we are seeing him so much more often in our own towns and in other people’s.

It seems that the chance of seeing Sideshow Bob on any given land visit (including visits to your friends’ town) is now 10%. Just beneath this in the game scripts is a note that the chance of seeing him was previously only 1%. Also of interest is that the Sideshow Bob you’re tapping on in a friend’s town is yours – not your friend’s. There’s something in the scripts that allows him to “spawn” in their towns when you visit them as well as appear in yours.

So, if you’ve been seeing Sideshow Bob more often in the game these days, that’s because the chance of seeing him after his initial visit is now much higher than it has been at any time prior to the Whacking Day update.

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Agnes Skinner arrives in New Springfield with the level 29 update to make Seymour’s life miserable – and just in time for Mother’s Day in the US and other parts of the world, too. (Mother’s Day is May 12 in the US and many other countries.)

If everything were behaving normally, the level 29 quests should begin right after Fat Tony’s quest finishes. With the current glitch in quest progression still in play, it’s difficult to know whether that’s still the case. Either way, you’ll need to be at level 29 for everything to begin. And Luigi and Skinner should be free to kick things off:

1. Principal Plus Interest Everything is going wonderfully in New Springfield and Seymour Skinner has a spring in his step, something that Luigi notices:

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Skinner: Who wouldn’t smile in this wonderful, new Springfield? Nothing could ruin it.
Bart: Hey Seymour, your office is full of anteaters. Also ants. Also you need to tell the cafeteria to order more honey because your office is full of that too. Heh heh.
Skinner: Delightful! I needed some busy work for Willie. When he has nothing to do, he keeps inviting me to play board games. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to relax and take in the avian grandeur of our fair town.
Luigi: And I will-a-romance the air with a-beautiful sounds of the accordion, the bagpipe of Italy.
Skinner: Terrific. Hopefully, there aren’t any trees near your restaurant.
So Skinner goes off to watch birds for 24 hours, while Luigi spends 12 hours outside his restaurant playing the accordion. Remove all nearby trees for Skinner’s sake and keep Milhouse free as Skinner finishes his task.

2. Hey Milhouse — Eureka! Milhouse his missing his parents…

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Milhouse: For dinner last night, I sucked on pasta shells until they got soft in my mouth.
Bart: Hmm, Springfielders do tend to appear when we build a new building. That gives me an idea…
Milhouse: To help me not to be an orphan?
Bart: No, to really prank Skinner! We need to bring back the one thing that can get inside his head and ruin his happiness. His mother.
Milhouse: Okay. But if we’re going to build Skinner’s house, we’re going to need a lot more pillows.
This prompts the build of the Skinner House ($196,500 and 24 hours) and unlocks Agnes Skinner. Keep Seymour free as the build finishes.

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3. There are Skinners and Winners Part 1 Skinner instantly notices the change…

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Agnes: Thought you’d gotten rid of me, did you. Now put on an apron and tidy up. Turns out limbo is pretty dusty.
Skinner: But Mother…
Agnes: No buts, Seymour. Get to work! When I get back from Bingo tonight, the table top better be clean enough for me to see my disapproving face in it!
And Agnes goes off to spend 4 hours hustling at bingo.

4. There are Skinners and Winners Part 2 Agnes appear to be great at multi-tasking as Seymour notices a few more changes now that she is back.

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Agnes: You’re darn tooting. There are a lot of naughty pictures in the Wikipedia.
Seymour: I don’t have time to fight you right now – I have to get to work… where no one can tell me what I can and can’t look at, because we don’t have any computers.
Seymour heads off to the relative peace and quiet of a 12-hour day monitoring the halls. Keep Comic Book Guy and Agnes free as he finishes.

The walkthrough will continue…

One of the two premium buildings released with level 29 is the Sprawl-Mart, and it’s certainly big (8×12 squares). But is it worth the 90 donuts that seems to be the current going rate for stand-alone buildings (this was the price for Swanky Fish, although Asia de Cuba costs a little more at 100 donuts)? Here’s some pros and cons.

First, some reasons to buy it:

1. It’s a 6 second build and gives you an XP boost on its construction (I forgot to make a note of just how much, so I’ll check this out in the files and let you know when I go in on Sunday).
2. It boosts your income by $300 and 30XP every 12 hours.
3. It gives Agnes an extra 16 hour task to greet customers that pays $750 and 200XP.

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4. It gives a boost to your Consumerism rating (which probably dropped as you hit level 29).
5. It’s another store for Legs and Louie to threaten and collect protection money from.
6. Your Springfield residents need a place to shop that sells a wider range of goods than Apu does at the Kwik-E-Mart.
7. You’re a completist, so you want every building!

The list of reasons against is short but powerful:

1. Sprawl-Mart comes without a character.
2. Only Agnes, Legs and Louie seems to interact with it in any way – and only Agnes has a task that keeps her there. Marge seems to ignore it completely, which surprised me.
3. It doesn’t seem to generate any additional quests.
4. As it’s not a limited-time building, there’s really no rush to buy it.
5. It seems to have nothing special in the way of animations, other than an open door reminiscent of the Kwik-E-Mart.
6. Do you really want a large global mega-chain to chase local businesses out of your town?

So, not an essential purchase, then. It’s greatest benefit seems to come from the boost it gives to your Consumerism rating, giving you an alternative to opening another Kwik-E-Mart if you want to keep it at 5 stars.

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Agnes Skinner is unlocked with the Skinner House at recently-added level 29 – and she’s another unvoiced character. The reason is, of course, because she’s voiced in the series by Tress MacNeille rather than one of the big 6 cast members. You can read about characters and voices and why some have them in the game and others don’t here. And you can find out all about Tress MacNeille and her work here.

And why does Agnes go on a date with Comic Book Guy as one of her tasks? That’s becauses they dated way back in season 12 in an episode entitled “Worst. Episode. Ever.” And you can read about that right here.

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Every time a new level is released, the prices of some or all of the more expensive buildings at previous levels are usually adjusted downwards. Following the level 29 update, some new prices have already been confirmed by readers of the blog.

However, I still need your help to update this list. If you’re able to buy a building at a price lower than the one you see here, please let us all know and I’ll revise this post. While this list is in the order that the buildings should unlock for you, the glitch that messes up the normal level progression is still at work, so you may find your buildings unlocking in a slightly different order.

So, based on current information (and thanks to everyone who’s helped out), here are the prices for all the buildings from the van Houten House onwards:

van Houten House – $1,800
Pink House – $3,400
Springfield Elementary – $10,500
White House – $7,700
Willie’s Shack – $12,000
Gulp ‘N’ Blow – $13,500
Cooling Towers – $15,000
Reactor Core – $18,500
Control Building – $15,000
Bart’s Treehouse – $25,000 (instant build)
Springfield Library – $20,500
Android’s Dungeon – $30,000
Orange House – $24,500
First Church of Springfield – $32,500
Java Server – $26,500
Moe’s – $32,000
Jake’s Unisex Hair Palace – $29,000
Springfield Downs – $34,500
Gilded Truffle – $31,000
King Toot’s – $37,000
Police Station – $40,500
Skip’s Diner – $35,500
Luigi’s – $39,000 (an increase! – thanks to Kevin and Mickus20)
Springfield Penitentiary – $46,000
Retirement Castle – $37,500
Town Hall – $48,500
Muntz House – $46,500
Krabappel Apartments – $54,000
Post Office – $69,000
Channel 6 – $46,000
Hibbert Family Practice – $69,550
Springfield General Hospital – $85,150
Burns Manor – $98,150
Pimento Grove – $72,800
Wiggum House – $81,600
El Chemistri – $101,100 (and 36 hours to build)
Springfield Buddhist Temple – $118,400
Adult Education Annex – $96,800 (and 36 hours to build)
Businessman’s Club – $126,000
Fat Tony’s Compound – $170,000 (and 36 hours to build)
The Skinner House – $196,500

Escalator to Nowhere – $1,000,000 (and 3 days to build)
Popsicle Stick Skyscraper – $2,000,000 (and 3 days to build)
50-foot Magnifying Glass – $3,000,000 (and 3 days to build)

Buildings on the list take 24 hours to complete, except where I’ve indicated otherwise. I look forward to your updates!

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!

Once Skinner has finished bird-watching for 24 hours at a safe distance from Luigi’s accordion-playing, Milhouse has a conversation with Bart (who doesn’t need to be free) that prompts the build of the Skinner House. He really wanted his mummy and daddy back, but Bart has other ideas.

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The Skinner House costs $196,500, takes 24 hours to build and unlocks Agnes Skinner:

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And this is what it looks like once it’s up:

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There will be a full building price update once I’ve returned from Japan. Right now, I’m in the lounge trying to clear as many comments as I can before I board my flight – and, no, there’s no wi-fi on this one! 🙂

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