I'm quite new to smart phones and so when i purchased my Samsung Galaxy around a year and a half ago I could not believe the range of applications and games available to be downloaded. Since then I have played loads of online games, but my favourite and the one with the lost game life has to be Airport City.
Airport City is completely free to download and is available on android. It basically a city building game, but combines an airport within the city. Your game starts off on a small scale. You own a small airport and a small piece of land. The idea is to buy hangers, aircraft, repair bases, terminals and control towers so that you can expand the airport and send flights all around the world, completing challenges in the process and therefore receiving rewards that will improve your airport / city. On the piece of land you can purchase houses, which is where your passengers for the airport live and various shops which will provide you with an income so that you can purchase further things and expand the airport in time. It really is a very good game.
Everytime you reach a new level - achieved by gaining a certain number of reward points by completing flights (the further the flight the more points you get) you are rewarded by receiving fuel, passengers and money. As the game progresses you'll find that you will have to upgrade your aircraft, hangers, terminals and control towers so that you can complete the longest flights - these require the largest planes and therefore hold the largest number of passengers.
Another great feature of the game is that the makers update it regularly and match the game to the time of the year. For example, at Christmas time you could puchase a sleigh and send a sleigh off around the world to deliver presents. They did similar things at Halloween and Valentines Day.
I wondered for ages that because it is free - how do the designers and owners of the game make money? Well, like many apps and games you can speed up your progress by purchasing reward points and airport money - allowing you to develop your airport / city faster. I don't really see the point of this as it is just a waste of money - after all it is just an online game.
Previous reviews that i have read and comments that people have made say that you have to purchase the airport cash if you want to progress, but this is simply not the case. You can progress easily and steadily through the levels and the game and build a very respectable airport and city, but it does take time. However, if you like and enjoy playing the game then I don't see any problem with this.
A top tip for those that do play this is that if you befriend other players then via visiting their airports and sending them gifts you can gain the necessary items you require to upgrade your airport faster.
I have received a fair bit of stick for playing this game, but I don't care I think it's great. It is suitable for all ages.
When I bought my Android tablet earlier this year, one of the first things I did was have a look for some games on the Google Play Store. Having discovered that most of my favourite games from my iPod weren't available on Android, I checked out the list of top free games - which is where I found Airport City.
The basic premise of Airport City is simple, and nothing new. You manage an airport, collecting passengers and fuel to send on flights, and earn money and experience points from those flights. You use the money to buy residential and operational buildings, and to buy more advanced planes in order to travel on longer flights (although where your airport is meant to be, I can't figure out - European, American, Asian and Australasian destinations appear in short and long haul flight lists).
Airport City, being a game for touchscreen devices, is played entirely using the touchscreen - no keyboard commands required. I find it very responsive on my tablet; sometimes too responsive as it opens up the properties of a building when I'm trying to scroll across the screen. To gather passengers, you tap on your residential buildings; to earn money and experience from flights, you tap on the planes.
Each flight you send out costs a certain amount of fuel and passengers, dependent on the type of aircraft - the larger it is, the more of both it requires. Fuel is replenished over time, but you do earn "top up" barrels by levelling up and completing collections.
Collections are made of items which can be collected from certain places - your own flights, guest flights, and buildings. I find it quite addictive trying to complete them - some are easier than others, and some items are very rare indeed. Most collections will only earn you money and experience once complete, but some give you special bonuses, such as gift boxes containing fuel, passengers or repair items, or bonuses to increase how much you earn from flights. In addition to collections, you are also given quests from various airport officials; examples are a pilot will tell you to fly to Sydney four times, an engineer will tell you to upgrade your repair building, and a stewardess tells you to collect items from destinations. These give you something to aim for in the game, so that you are not just sending flights off with no real goal.
When you first start playing Airport City, the turnaround on flights is very quick, so you can sit and play it for a while in one go. As you advance however, it becomes more of a leave-it-and-come-back-later game. I like games like this, that don't require a lot of your time, but it's not to everyone's taste. I enjoy progressing with my airport, building it up, collecting items and sending planes to new destinations. I find games like this mildly addictive: I like having challenges to aim for, quests to achieve, trying to reach the next level and have access to new exciting destinations.
The graphics on Airport City are very good, everything is clear and sharp even when fully zoomed in. It's not a massively "cute" game in terms of style - the planes do look like actual planes and not cartoony ones. I play this on a 7 inch tablet, and it looks like it might only be a tablet or large screen phone (i.e. Samsung Galaxy S range) game - having searched for it on the Play Store on my Samsung Galaxy Ace, it informs me that it is not compatible with my phone. Although this means not all Android users will be able to access it, it makes sense as I can't imagine it being very good on the more average (sensible) sized smartphones.
The game loads fairly quickly on my tablet, with a loading screen showing for maybe 15 seconds when I open the game. This seems a reasonable time to me, given that it is a fairly complex game for a mobile one. I've never had any problems with the game crashing or freezing.
There is, however, quite a large flaw in Airport City, which is apparent in many games of its type, but I have not seen it to this extent in any other game. Earning money is a slow process - the earnings from flights take a long time to build up, even when you get into the longer flights, and the amount of money required to build the next level of airport buildings takes a very long time to earn. Of course there is the option of paying for more airport money - a common feature of these free games.
In addition to the main coin currency of the games, there are airport bucks. You can only earn these by levelling up, and then you only get one at a time. It is also possible to purchase these - and in all honesty, you really have to in order to progress. Buying more land, for example, is necessary so you can have enough residential buildings to provide passengers, and space for terminals and larger runways. However, the first land extension is very expensive in comparison to the earnings you will be making from flights - but you can pay by airport bucks instead. I did this on my first extension, as I had reached level 10 and therefore had 10 airport bucks, which was the price of the land. The next extension was even more extortionately priced, so I chose to buy some airport bucks - during a sale when I got three times as many as normal. I now purchase airport bucks every now and then, always waiting for a sale which come along fairly regularly. But I'd rather not have to. I have purchased additional currency on games before, but it has always been more of a choice to do so, not a case of buy-or-don't-progress as it is in Airport City. For example, I always managed to fully enjoy and build in the various Pocket Gems games I have played, such as Tap Zoo and Tap Pet Hotel, without paying for currency.
Airport City is a fun game, exactly the kind of simulation/management game that I enjoy, but it is so badly hampered by this currency issue that I have decided not to check out any of the other games by the developer, because they all look similar and will presumably have the same currency situation. I am going to continue playing Airport City, as I enjoy it and don't mind occasionally buying currency, but it irritates me that I need to in order to progress, and definitely something to bear in mind if you consider downloading the game - better not to bother than start playing, enjoy it, and the find yourself in a position where you almost have to shell out money in order to continue playing the game to its full scope. I'd probably give other games of this kind four stars (the abovementioned Pocket Gems games) as buying currency in them is beneficial but not essential - although it's annoying that you miss out on things if you don't buy currency, it's not necessary to progress. Airport City is just as fun to play, but needs an extra star knocked off as the currency problem is even more pronounced.
Airport City is one of the "free" apps that you can find in the Play Store in android phones. The game itself is free to download but you can also use your real money to purchase "airport cash" to upgrade the items in the game.
- What the game is about-
In the games, you get to build your personal airport and send flights into the sky. Apart from building the airport, you also get to build the city to support it.
Besides, you also get to manage the airport by arranging different flights to land on the runways, send flights to different areas of the world to collect items and complete challenges.
- So what do you actually do?-
In relation to the supporting city, what you need to do is similar to other games of the same type. You clear the land, building the building and collect earnings and passengers from the buildings. The same apply for the airport, you get to build the hangers, runways and control towers, etc. You need to continue upgrading the buildings so that you can accommodate bigger and more modern planes.
In relation to the flight themselves, you have to send your planes to different destinations. Before you send off a flight, you have to get enough passengers and certain type of aircraft and items to fly to a certain destination. In return, you can import rare items and money.
- What I like about this game-
They have a good collection of destination places. The collectibles in the city are also reflecting the features of different cities. The sounds and graphs are also of decent quality. Controlling is also easy.
- What I don't like about this game-
It takes a long time to load the game (I am using HTC XE sensation which has a dual core processor and I have no problem running other apps).
Earning coins from the game was hard. You can only get tiny amount of coins from the buildings and the flights and upgrading the buildings are extremely expensive. Besides, you need a lot of special items (which are only available if you have the airport cash) to upgrade the items or to repair the flights! And repairing the flights is extremely important in the game. There is a time that all my aircrafts were broken down and there's no way I can proceed the game anymore because I don't have the items to repair the planes!
I am giving this game one star because you can never make any progress until you pay real cash.
Unlike many other games of similar type, which you can earn a small number of "airport cash" (or its equivalent) by achieving higher levels, you can't get any airport cash unless you pay for them. It means that you will basically get stuck in a certain level of the game unless you play. And up to that point, I stop playing the game.