Tiny Death Star

I'm not the kind of person that could be described as a "gamer". I have a PS3, a Nintendo Wii and a library of games but I never seem to play either of them. It tends to break down to my extreme lack of time to play anything. When I do play, I tend to feel guilty because there's much more that I could be doing with my time. There are a bunch of games that I'd like to play but don't bother buying because I know I'll never get the chance to play. But that may have something to do with why I play games on my phone so often.

Wait. Scratch that. I don't play different games on my phone. I play one kind. Tiny Tower. A game that had me addicted to the point that after my game crashed and I lost my data, I emailed the developers and begged them to find a way to get it back. I was able to kick my habit when I got my new phone by not installing it for the first few months. But I've now learned that a new version of Tiny Tower was just released. A Star Wars themed version.

Tiny Death Star.

I'm weak. There's no way I could resist that. I downloaded it on Friday and played almost non-stop since then.

The game is basically the same as Tiny Tower with a Star Wars paint job. Essentially, the Empire is running low on money to fund their fight against the Rebellion. To counteract this, the Emperor proclaims that they will start running the Death Star as a business, collecting rent from citizens (or "Bitizens" as the game calls them) and making them get jobs. You start out with a small, two story duplex and add floors of differing types to your construction. Most of the floors are of a different industry type, such as Retail or Recreational, and each floor has its own theme, like the Holochess Hall or the Droid Store. Bitizens move into Residential floors of the Death Star and get jobs, which produces income and allowing the player to expand.

Tiny Death Star does differ from its predecessor slightly. One of those differences is the addition of missions assigned to you by the Emperor. These are simple things that would be fulfilled as you play the game regardless, such as "Build an Imperial Floor" or "Have 30 Bitizens move in". You would find yourself fulfilling these missions as you progress through the game but at least it's another way you can make money.

Another difference is the Imperial Floor. In Tiny Tower, these were five industry types that generated income: Retail, Food, Recreation, Service, and Creative. Tiny Death Star does away with Creative and replaces it with Imperial. When you build an Imperial floor, it gets placed beneath the Arrivals floor, away from all of the others. Using Supply officers, the Imperial floors craft items the Empire would use in battle. The use of these items is limited to other, more significant items and giving the player a monetary reward for it. If these items have any other use, I haven't found it yet.

But probably what I find the most fun is finding the classic characters from the movies. Every now and then, you'll be visited by a Star Wars character, like Lando Calrissian or Princess Leia, all in different costumes. The player collects these characters and can view them in an album later on. So far, it serves nothing to the game besides being something to strive for.

As always, players can speed up their progress by purchasing credits that allow them to unlock features, such as specific levels or characters for the album. This just seems to defeat the purpose as the game, like Tiny Tower, has no specific end so speeding up the progress does nothing besides making you grow jaded with the game once you've collected everything.

If you're a fan of Tiny Tower, then Tiny Death Star is up your alley. If you like Star Wars but have never played Tiny Tower, I'd say give it a shot. it's a pointless little game but it would at least give you something to do while you're waiting for an oil change at Pep Boys. Tiny Death Star is available for iPhone and Android for the low, low price of free.

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