|Title:||Big City Stories|
|Price:||Free to Play|
BCS is a free to play city builder but with a fun twist. I’ll talk about it all throughout this playthrough.
First off after starting up the game and watching an amusing, hand drawn cutscene is the character creation. Now there are plenty of games with deep character customisation but this is something else. Bare in mind this is supposed to be a mayor of the city and although basic, the creation tool can make some funny looking characters. I give you T-Rex Terry.
Getting into the game you’re given free movement of your created mayor to do what you want, so I stole someone’s car and proceeded to run laps around the city. I wasn’t expecting to be able to steal cars in a city builder but there you go. The framerate while running around is awful, not sure if it’s my old PS4 or not but there are some quite noticeable frame jumps.
I’m pretty sure I was supposed to talk to the Mayor’s assistant first but after tearing ass through the city I stopped off at the mechanic’s and spoke to guy there. I proceeded to complete his given missions which included removing his mates ramp and destroying street lights in a stolen car.
One thing I noticed right off the bat was that some of the gameplay sounds come out of the dualshock 4s speaker, the characters running sound is the main one that bugs me. An example of a game which has a good use of the speaker is Warframe, incoming story messages come through the speaker which is mutable in the settings. I don’t understand why the devs chose to do this but can’t knock them for doing something most big developers don’t bother with.
The menu is pretty simple to navigate and find the things you’re looking for, as an example everything regarding building is under the buildings tab, city ledger for your stats and so on. The story missions require you to build your city and move buildings and do some nonsensical stuff like place some fireworks down and set them off. In the buildings menu it gives you a top down view of your city and apart from the usual build and upgrade options you can highlight a building with an “!” mark and start a story mission conversation, which you can do while free roaming by approaching the character and I find more entertaining by rocking up to someone in a muscle car, hitting a wooden bench, barrel rolling and landing perfectly in front of them.
After completing a few of the story mission I am required to go to the store located in the menu. This is where things, as you will probably guess, go from free to play to pay to play. Gaining additional resources and workers to build things will cost you real money, this is where the fun stops for me. Admittedly I have been caught by the micro-transaction trap but I’m not a fan of that business model but that’s for another discussion. Some avatar customisation items can be purchased with money made in-game but those super speed running shoes are going to cost you real money. You’re hard-earned money isn’t necessary to play the game but it will, as usual, in these micro-transaction type games take you longer to acquire resources and workers to continue to make your phallic shaped cities.
I joined the public hub and there were a few people chatting but it was your usual creep fest when hubs with chat functions are added to games. Now it’s time to give the game up.
After having a giggle with my main man T-Rex Terry and cruising around the city I’d say it’s a pretty fun city builder but the micro-transactions and laggy framerate put me off keeping this game in my library. I’ll probably give this another year or two of development before trying it again.