Who wants to buy my house?
I know it's especially unprofessional of me, but given this review has a tentative link to real estate, it seems an appropriate spot to offload what's become a weight around my neck.
Yes, the roof might be missing, all the doors and windows are boarded up, and it's currently home to several families of rats, but a house is a house, is it not?
There's a certain similarity between my rotting shack and Digital Chocolate's crack at social gaming with Millionaire City. In both cases, though the structure seems to be sound there's something missing.City slicker
The idea is to sow the seeds of a prosperous city, either by buying up existing buildings, or by tapping up spare plots and constructing your own – whether residential or commercial.
Money is the lifeblood that enables you to do both, and to make enough to expand the city's borders you have to turn your properties into cash cows.
Commercial developments essentially do that automatically, but the houses you own have to be filled with tenants – and this is where Millionaire City's social roots show.
It's possible to choose from a variety of applicants, each one bringing in differing amounts of rent and, crucially, delivering them at different times.
Indeed, as is custom with social gaming, many of the actions you instigate during play take time to complete, with the most fruitful options usually taking several hours or days to come to fruition.Money maker
Of course, the idea isn't that you sit with your handset firmly grasped in your hand, waiting impatiently for things to get going again. Instead, you're meant to turn your back and leave your city to thrive without your constant prodding and probing.
To its credit, thrive is exactly what it does. Millionaire City ticks happily away in the background without actually having to run, meaning there are usually goodies aplenty to pick up whenever you do pop back on for a play.
That's assuming you've set your alarm, of course. When it comes to rent, if you leave it too long you'll find many of your tenants will have left without paying, meaning there's a certain level of dedication required.
But though Millionaire City can't be faulted in terms of its structure - meeting set goals, such as decorating your properties or planting trees, keeping you involved throughout – there's one key cog missing in action: the social element.
There's simply nowhere to post your achievements or connect with other players. For a title that follows the social gaming framework almost to the letter, that's some oversight.
As a result, Millionaire City's slice of urbania feels somewhat one dimensional, consisting of swish skyscrapers that look solid enough on the outside, but whose substance is actually rather paper thin.