As we mentioned in our review, EA’s freemium take on the classic SimCity franchise isn’t quite what most would expect. Still, SimCity BuildIt [Free] offers a pretty fair free-to-play experience with a lot of elements that pay homage to the series. With that said, there are always ways to be more efficient while playing a crafting title and we’ve got a few tips to help you get there.

Have a Plan For Your Inventory

You might think it’s a good idea to keep a healthy supply of every item just in case. However, I think a better idea is to know exactly what you’re looking for and to play to the requirements, not to stock. If you have a bunch of residences that are looking for a certain material, go crazy on stockpiling those as at least you know you’ll be able to quickly in and spend those on actual upgrades once they are ready to go.

IMG_4049

The Global Trade HQ Is the Best Way to Sell Excess

Once you unlock the Trade HQ, I recommend using it to sell your excess rare parts (i.e. expansion and inventory materials). The game gives you the opportunity to ‘advertise’ an item every few minutes, which means it’ll have a high chance of popping up when a player accesses their HQ. I’d suggest not only waiting until a free advertise is available (you can advertise multiple things at the same time for premium currency but I don’t think it’s worth it) but it’s probably a good idea to just sell your item at the maximum price available as someone will inevitably buy it even at that high of a price. I wouldn’t necessarily use the HQ to sell common materials, but if you manage to stockpile a good amount you can probably get a pretty decent premium simply because you’re selling a stockpile.

Make Efficient Use of Public Buildings 

When it comes to public buildings, where you place them in relation to your residential buildings becomes an important part of the game. Ideally you want one building to touch as many residences as possible in order to maximize your investment since public buildings can cost a pretty penny. During the early game, parks and fire departments are the big public businesses to pay attention to so I’d suggest early zones that have a road above three residences in a row, two residences above the road with a park and fire department in the middle of them. All five of the residential zones get access to the public buildings and road and you’re left with only a few empty spots. Obviously as you start to unlock police and specialty buildings, you’ll need to rearrange but in the beginning this is probably one of the better ways to organize your buildings.

Don’t Ever Use SimCash for Timers

This is a pretty standard tip for any timer based freemium game but it’s worth repeating: don’t ever spend your premium currency to speed up a timer. It’s almost never worth it as you’ll always get the benefit of what you’re speeding up with just a little more time. Most freemium games love tempting you with spending premium currency to finish a timer because it appeals to the instant gratification desire in most people. Just don’t listen to it and, if all else fails, go play another game until the desired timers are finished.

Don’t Overextend at the Onset

When you first start playing SimCity BuildIt, you might think you’ve been provided a decent amount of coin to start. This might feel particularly so as you start upgrading your residences and earning even more. However, I’d suggest that you really watch your spending at the onset, and choose to only focus on a few residences at the onset. As you start leveling up, you quickly unlock new requirements, such as water and sewage, that require significant capital in order to get them up and running. If you don’t have all or most of that money saved up, it’s going to take awhile to purchase them and give your buildings the ability to upgrade.

IMG_4073

Extra Slots For Your Stores Can Go A Long Way

I’d recommend picking up at least the first additional slot for each of the stores you build. This is important for a few different reasons. First, unlike factories, your stores don’t build items concurrently which means it’s going to take a lot longer to build the materials you want. Second, the more slots you have, the less chance you have of having an empty store running if you haven’t been able to check into the game for awhile. Third, the more items you can queue up, the less items end up in your inventory, which means you can build and collect other things while your store items are in the queue. Finally, the first slot extra slot only costs four SimCash, which is a steal in my opinion.

Happy Citizens Mean More Taxes

Once you build the City Hall early on, you can start collecting taxes on a daily basis. An obvious tip is to make sure you log in at least once a day so you can collect your taxes and restart the timer (especially since coins are so important in this game). Another, less obvious step is to mind the relationship between happiness and taxes. The happier your citizens, the higher the taxes they pay, which is a proportion of the the citizens you have. Happiness is linked to making sure all citizens have access to parks, essential services, be free from pollution, and so on. This goes back to my suggestion on not overextending; make sure all the citizens you have currently are 100% happy before thinking of expanding.

Higher Capacity Factories Are Great, But Don’t Go Overboard

Once you unlock higher end factories you can bulldoze your old ones and build the new higher end factories for a price. The benefit to better factories is being able to construct more materials simultaneously. The downside is the obvious cost of coins. It’s a great idea to upgrade at least one or two to basic factories, but I wouldn’t bother moving on to mass production or higher unless you really have the spare capital (meaning don’t waste your life savings on it) and you know you have the inventory space to handle the increased production.

IMG_4047

Build On Inventory in the Short Term, Land Expansion in the Long Term

Inventory space is incredibly important when you’re just starting out. Even when you get to the point where you can buy land expansion, you’ll probably still have a decent amount of space before you really need to start thinking of expanding. If you have lots of expansion materials lying around, I’d suggest slowly selling them through the Trade HQ (using the free advertising as needed) and using the coin towards purchasing inventory upgrades. Get to around 70 or 80 slots before pulling a 180 and then selling inventory materials to earn coin for expansion materials.

Have any good tips for SimCity BuildIt? Feel free to leave them in the comments section below or post in our forums.

  • spsummer

    Quick answer, don't download.

    • http://toucharcade.com Eli Hodapp

      This response gets more clever each time.

      • cofunguy

        Beats downloading and deleting!

    • StealthDawg

      Troll alert.

      • hkgsulphate

        pay to win sucks

      • ashraff96

        Then sir I suggest you to try clash of clans

      • E71

        Two wrongs don't make a right.

    • muttso1o

      Yawn!!

    • Richard Liu

      Better answer: boycott those venders who have only pay-to-win trash games.

      • Raph

        Why boycott when this is the only source of income for the developpers. I ll never understand people who want everything free.

      • Richard Liu

        No. People are willing to pay for "fun", but not pay for "less frustration." It's not easy to make perfect balance, but quite a few developers devoted in freemium category are succeed in making both players who're willing to pay and who are not willing to pay happy. Namely Puzzle and Dragons.

      • Nope

        Except the economics of apps have shown you to be wrong. People behave a lot like gambling addicts with these games and there are no door fees at casinos because you want to draw people in and drain their money. People don't want to spend $19.99 on a quality app game, but they've shown they're willing to spent that and a lot more once they're into the game and doing in-app purchases. If the pay to play model wasn't working then everyone wouldn't be switching to it.

      • Richard Liu

        You have totally misunderstood what I'm talking about. I support the pay-to-play model, but I defy BADLY DESIGNED pay-to-play games. A good pay-to-play game shall be enjoyable to all player, while stimulating players to pay for extra advantages. A bad pay-to-play game will punish no-pay players with frustrated barriers that is almost impossible to overcome.
        Developers are free to choose their direction for operation, but it doesn't mean that they can mess up with gaming balance and place IAP as compensation. IAP or not, a bad game is a bad game.

      • http://philosophyofprogramming.tumblr.com/ projectrevo

        How does that make sense? They're not forcing anyone to do something that's impossible. They whole point of generating materials that require random luck vs. giving it easily is to get people to pay for them. That doesn't mean the ones who don't pay for them can't get them. You just have to wait longer, but it's not that long anyway. Just because you're annoyed with something doesn't make it a bad game. Educate yourself on how things work because no one cares about how you "feel" and your opinions on the matter 🙂

      • Richard Liu

        This is GAME Bro ! Life is short so find some better games that worthy your money and your time !

      • http://www.thewildblue.net AlaskanFlyboy

        I have to agree with you. Facebook and mobile games have shown this to be a more lucrative model, which plays with the same reward incentives that modern consumerism and gambling all have in common. It's lucrative, and EA dabbled with it to a minor extent with the first Sims games as they released expansion packs. They attempted to bring it to the SimCity franchise with SimCity 4, which failed back then. Now, many games are earning money through the expansion concept, or the pay-to-play concept. Even Microsoft now runs Office, and will be running Windows10, on a form of the pay-to-play scheme. The days of buying a game and owning it I fear are long gone. It's far too late to boycott these programs as far too many have acquiesced. To boycott is simply to never use a new piece of software or play a new game for the rest of your life. Just pray that the rest of life doesn't require us to go so far in hock.

      • http://twitter.com/#!/SocraticMrMeth Streptococcus pyogenes

        this is one of the rare occasions where I'm going to side with the player over the dev. customer support for the game are wonderful people, and have given me nothing but excellent help, but I can't help but notice that I'm playing a game where, if I could afford it, it would cost me $40 of actual money to place _ONE_HOSPITAL_ if I'm unable to make every other service wait while I save up Simoleons.

        Back in my day (sorry, sorry, I KNOW, I'M SORRY, AND ALSO OLD) that's how much games cost. Entire games. One building.

        *pained noise*

      • Big Kahuna Burger

        I could not agree more with you. But as long as there are people out there paying a bunch of money for every small simple game like this, those companies will continue developing and selling like crazy. So.. for the rest that we do not like paying 40$ for 1cm of pixel in a mobile game there are other much greater stuff out there to play on consoles or pc. Or play boardgames with our kids or find some hobby.. that's life 🙂

    • Dave Musgrave

      "Three two three two four four two three, and!"
      Clickety–clickety–clickety–clickety–clickety–clickety–clickety–clickety–clickety–clickety–clickety–clickety–clickety–clack.
      "These men are pawns."
      "I will put the price of twenty thousand dirham on their heads."
      "Next they will be hailed as the true messanger of God!"
      They were just a couple of songwriters who came to Ishtar to break into show business.
      "Argh! Hey hey hey! Hey! Hey!"
      "Easy boy... easy boy..."
      "What the hell is the matter with him?! Is he blind?!"
      "Well, yeah, he is, but he's in perfect condition."
      So how did they wind up on everyone's hitlist?
      "Your lives are in danger"
      "No don't put your hands up you idiot."
      ♫Oh little darlin'. My little darlin'.♫
      "I can't believe these men may control the fate of the Middle East."
      ♫Oh where, are you?♫
      "Do it."
      "Ayiyiyiyiyiyi schmechahii buttahotsfayaaah!"
      "This is unbelievable."
      ♫Hoopa hoopa hoopa. Kno-ow well-a. That my love-a...♫
      "Are the two American messengers of god dead yet?"
      "Is this the oasis?"
      "Does this look like an oasis to you?"
      "Yeah look at the birds! Are those vultures?"
      ♫Yeah yeah yeah yeah... Wa-as just fo-or you.♫
      "He's aiming at us!"
      "Would you stop being paranoid!"
      "Run smuck, they're trying to kill us!"
      Warren Beatty. Dustin Hoffman. Isabelle Adjani.
      "Your girl? How did she get to be your girl?!"
      ♫ONLY YOU!♫
      "I think they're wonderful!"
      Ishtar: Written and directed by Elaine May
      "Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha this is some of our best work!"

  • hellscaretaker

    Yes make sure you save money for when you unlock police as you will need a shed load of money as the crime rate goes though the roof and your rating drops untill you get crime under control.

    Also if u have building that needs police or fire cover and is out of cover. You can move the building and place it under cover to fix the problem.

    • Nope

      The police and fire department levels become pay walls that make a lot of people spend real money to get past them.

    • Big Kahuna Burger

      Paying to get 1cm of pixels for a police station IS the real crime.

    • Kieran Conway

      I have held my city at level 13 with 55, 500 sims at 100% happy for 2 weeks now. I have fire stations, police stations and parks that cover all residential area with full power, sewage and water. Roads are 4 lane ones and because I am under 14 I am yet to be forced to provide transport buses. Yes I can only make Bricks, nails, chairs, veg, tape measures, planks, hammers. Shuvels, metal, plastic, wood, seeds, chemicals and minarals but I now have almost 300,000 simalonians. I have the ship that has so far earned me 30 keys. I love the game and have bought extra slots for storage 130 now and extra slot 10 in trade depot. I store thing for the shipments and make stuff and sell them at top rate in HQ. I keep maxing my materials and use them to make expensive items to sell. I find this method loads of fun and makes money hand over fist. If I win items to extend or increase storage I sell them straight away until I make enough to upgrade. I feel that extending and getting loads of essential straight away create total chaos and is not a good way. Good luck guys and I would by sim cash if needed to and did buy some on my ipad game because I agree that the developers deserve the money for the fun I get out of the game i have 30 simcash already just from using the method above on my android device. My ipad game has become unmanageable be good if I could transfer funds I bought on there to my new game on android though. Also it is a paid that the app will not disconnect from Facebook on my old game on ipad so I can use it on my new game. They should allow us to transfer a gamer tags funds and then delete that game info from server so I can then re conect to Facebook on my new game on android such a pain and uni fare I feel. Still love the game but hope they can sort this soon. I know some will try drag down my post but may help someone so that's why I posted peace out.

  • Pyroknight

    Still upset that nuclear power plants don't make any sense

  • Jay G

    How about skipping this altogether and playing Craft the World instead? (which seems to have been completely missed by TA so far)

    • Emile'sGhost

      How about you let people play what they want, and mind your own business?

      • Jay G

        How about you take your own advice?

      • glenn jimson

        How bout you just f*ck off

    • c4r105

      Exactly what I was thinking. why focus on rubbish like this, and ignore a real quality title like craft the world? Makes you think doesn't it?

      • http://toucharcade.com Eli Hodapp

        Quite literally every metric I have to gauge TouchArcade audience interests points to wanting more guides for free to play games to a factor that's hard to even describe. The Clash of Clans, Candy Crush, and Game of War Fire Age guides by themselves in 2014 generated more traffic for TouchArcade than our forums did. Looking at the clicks this story in specific is getting, it has generated 6-8x the interest of anything else on the front page right now, including our Game of the Year and best of lists.

        Think of it this way before you get mad next time: These articles allow me to pay writers to post about comparatively niche games like Craft the World.

      • Jay G

        I would hardly call Craft the World a "niche game". It's a port of a full-fledged, casual, yet deep, PC strategy game. I can't believe you haven't covered it AT ALL. (a week later)

        What "niche" is it, btw? That's the lamest excuse I've ever heard.

      • James M

        U mean the mine craft clone? For one totally different games, 2 sim city has a following for years and years now. U obvi don't care for sim city so why here? People do not care about ur input they are here because they want sim city tips.

      • Jay G

        It's not a Minecraft clone at all, perhaps if this site would cover it, you would know that, because I'm sure ftp Sim City lovers like you are too lazy to look stuff up on their own, and too cheap to buy it anyway.

      • James M

        Yes dude i did look it up and its not like sim city totally different games

      • Jak

        You guys... Come on! LIVES ARE FOR SALE AT YOUR NEAREST RETAIL STORE! And really? You're going to mention Craft the World? Let's all go play Skyrim or Destiny. Let's go play NES Contra, Mario, or Legend of Zelda. Don't get mad at developers, simply do as the author of this entire article-post thing said and tell people "Don't waste your money on freemium game currency."

        If I was the game developer I now I would implement freemium. It's called "The Making Money off of Idiots" sales tactic! How do you think they make money from a FREE GAME!!?? This shouldn't be offensive, and I can tell you there is a long line of Sim City games that date pretty far back so I'm on there side. Their only failure was Sim City 5. Terrible game. So now those who would like to can play Craft the World (which in no way is a Minecraft rip-off OR worthy at all to be compared to the Sim City franchise) and those who want to play Sim City can do that. And PLEASE PLEASE buy lives at your nearest retail store... "Jim... for the love of God, don't use those torpedoes." #MovieQuotes

        Oh, and I don't think people know what a niche game is. (If you look up Niche Game in the Dictionary, it will describe Craft the World. It will even say "Ex. Craft the World.")

        I wrote this while I waited for my shovels and tape measures to finish in Sim City Buildit. It passed the time well. Now I gotta go get a life.

      • Jay G

        TL;DR

    • udunn0m3

      Thanks for the tip! Downloading rn

      • Roxanne

        Thanks fot this information : But free resources

    • Edwin Ramirez

      Craft the world? Gonna check that out. Thanks.

  • StealthDawg

    Nice article Eric. Thank you.

  • Morgan01

    Save space and money...bypass.

    • Emile'sGhost

      So clever.... *eyeroll*

    • Stormourner

      gandalf: you shall not bypass

  • muttso1o

    Also use the change building plan on regular basis.
    Or else you only have Empirestate like buildings.

  • awresnick

    The trolls are so annoying, i'd actually really appreciate tips on advanced traffic management if anyone has them. When population increases complaints rise about traffic, anyone have any building/road layout tips to minimize these complaints besides spend lots on upgrading roads? Slowly saving for department of transportation...

    • Gustopher

      Sometimes reducing traffic is a matter of changing the direction a building is facing so it opens out to a a less crowded road. You may also want to swap larger populated buildings with smaller populated ones for some relief. Lastly, moving stores around to less crowded parts of town can help. These buildings don't require police, fire, or health coverage.

      • theron

        You can also make shorter roads so that you don't have to upgrade a big road when traffic gets bad. Longer roads = more expensive upgrades.

    • jenisedai

      I've found that if you have the space, making another 2 lane road provides some relief as the "people" go around. But yes, making smaller road sections helps.

  • Bernzwong

    Thanks for the tips! Agreed with them all.

    I would add and expand on: holding back on building extra houses/residences/empty plots. I realised this too late and built a whole bunch of residences, levelled up quickly and then all the other amenities started to be unlocked I.e police, waste management, power/water, parks, clinics - and it all was too much requirements and not enough coins!

    Result was a lot of abandon buildings, unhappy citizens which meant less coins to build things to satisfy happiness - terrible cycle!

    So my point: even if you CAN build more residences, don't - until you have upgraded all your existing ones first, or have a decent spread of amenities and coins saved up before planting more residences plots.

    • macslayer118

      I did the same thing! Now that I have my "must build all residences" impulse under control the game is much more manageable!!

      • debh

        I made the same mistake and ended up demolishing residences that I'd spent materials on just to increase the happiness quotient and therefore tax rate. Play and learn... much easier to manage services with less residences anyway.

  • Lochheart

    Some Free to play have a nice balanced model. This Sims City have this kind of system. If you are smart, you can avoid paying, if not you will wait for timers.

    This game have this achievement : how to have the longest party without paying!

    Just a sad thing, if they work on a premium game, instabuy for me.

  • andylangers

    This is actually quite enjoyable and I was pleasantly surprised

  • PRAETORRIDUS ANIMUS

    I'd rather tend to a SimGarden.

  • mattinacan

    why would anyone download and support this piece of shit

  • Evan Cm

    This game would be great if not for the fremium crap. Every year fremium gets more and more pervasive. Its ruining the gaming world. I'd rather pay for a game up front.

    PS. If anyone knows of hacked versions of fremium games that eliminate that problem of the micropay waiting bullshit I'm in. Normally I support developers but for fremium games I'm eager to screw over those assholes. Maybe then they'll learn better.

    • Nope

      All of the evidence shows that you're in the minority. People aren't willing to spend $19.99 up front for high quality game for the phone, but they are willing to pay out a lot more than that over time in these games as they get addicted. They're simply following the casino model of getting people addicted to the game and then slowly draining them of money.

      • Trouble

        Is this really true or is more accurate to say that it's more profitable to use the pay as you go model. I know I would gladly pay a reasonable upfront price for a game. I'm guessing but i would think offering people the opprotunity for some sample play and then asking for a onetime fee to continue would be a profitable business model. I think pay as you go is just more profitable. They are also making money from ads with their commercial bubbles which is another reasonable way of generating income

  • Oli Norwell

    A great tip that nobody has mentioned but helps a lot and doesn't cost anything is that you can move your buildings. Press and hold any buildings that you wish to move and you can reposition them. Do this with factories and power stations to ensure they are a long way from your residential areas.

  • MK Faria

    Agree with those who say don't overbuild. Also, plan ahead for each unlocked level by clicking in the government section on each grayed - out service icon. You'll find out at what levels you'll need to be prepared to pay for police, garbage, etc. Those requirements kick in immediately upon leveling up and Sims abandon their homes pretty quickly if these aren't met. Expansion can be very expensive in terms of added police, power, fire stations, etc.

    I like to build small and tall in the beginning. Center skyscrapers around a "town square" cluster of fire, police, and school that will cover all. Raise property values and population by cramming in parks wherever possible, moving them around for maximal growth, which you can see at the top of the screen when you're placing them. You can even "preplace" parks to see what the advantages would be, as long as you don' t actually purchase the green checkmark buy button.

    Watch traffic patterns. Sometimes you can spot where problems will crop up. Sometimes moving buildings, bulldozing roads, or adding new roads helps for the short term. With the dense population pattern described above, however, you'll likely need to upgrade at least three sides of your central configuration.

    Expand city storage slots, but sell off land expansion tools in the beginning, since you're not expanding land. This helps pay for your schools and buses.

    Don't be afraid to develop around the perimeters and then bulldoze, for profit

  • rbirnie

    One thing that hasn't yet been mentioned. Its quite easy to make money buying low and selling high in the Global Trade HQ. Many people sell their items at the default price, you can buy these and then resell them again at the max price fairly quickly. Leave a few spaces free in your store though, if things aren't selling fast enough offer up an item for the default price to get folks to come in (who'll then often buy everything posted). In the last few days I've bought $95k in the store and sold $160k, so about $65k profit, not bad!

  • Micah Andrew Bule

    Not sure if it's a bug, but if you have friends playing the game, you might want to check their cities every now and then (or you could even tell them to do this technique).

    Any unfinished residential areas (NOT "FOR UPGRADE" residential areas, it's the one you're just STARTING to BUILD) in your friends' city would be available for you to build. Best part? You don't have to wait for 30 minutes if you don't like the requested materials. Just go back to your city, then go back to your friends' city.

    It's a good way to get coins if you have lots of materials in your inventory. Plus, it doesn't really add experience to you, so you get coins, you free your inventory of items, plus you don't get to level up faster, which technically won't add city requirements (fire, police, health) in the early game.

    • Tyler Bridegroom

      explain this better please

  • Jason Anderson

    Very easy to accumulate coins in this game, it just takes time.

    After the tutorial finished, I completely redesigned my layout to put my city bordering the "ocean", residential size of 2 houses, then 2 parks, then 2 more houses wide, followed by the same across the street, 2 residential, 2 parks, then 2 more residential. The next row is 1 residential, police (medium), fire (medium), 2 residential. The last is 5 residential and then 2 residential. So it would look something like this....
    R = Residential
    MP = Medium Police
    MF= Medium Fire
    Prk = Park (you choose which one)
    ----------- = Road
    R R
    R R R R R
    ----------------------------------
    R MP MF R R
    R R Prk Prk R

    ----------------------------------
    R R Prk Prk R
    WATERWATERWATERWATER

    All of your services are to the far north set up as you see fit, but as far away from your city as possible. I have expanded 3 times, and have pushed further north allowing a greater distance from my city. As your Sims hate pollution!

    As for getting to this point I am at currently, with police, fire, solar power plant, upgraded factories, garbage incinerator...you need to build within that city area above, upgrading the buildings to skyscraper size, and then scrap them and rebuild. Rinse and repeat until you have enough cash for the services/utility/factory you want to buy. I started over three or four times before realizing that it costs ZERO to destroy or build residential buildings other than the time to gather the upgrade materials for them. I always have my factories cooking something, and my stores making something as well. If you have ever played the Sim City games, then you know there is a lot of different ways to grow your city, however you should never build too much too quickly. It will only make it more difficult to keep your citizens happy, and maximize your tax collecting!

    • Jason Anderson

      I also used the guide above as well, as there are very good tips for making coinage there. I sell almost all of my expansion materials now, as I am saving for more services for my second block of residentials mirrored as the first.

  • Mojod00d

    I am currently at level 21 with 122k population and I didn't spent a
    dime on this game. Of course, without spending any money there will be
    certain structures you are unable to get but that doesn't stop you from
    your game progress. Just as this guide spilled out, you need to plan
    your progress. Don't just build houses and upgrading without careful
    planning. Once all the houses are upgraded to the top on a section of a
    road, citizens of that road will demand you upgrade the road, and that
    could be your demise if you are short on cash to upgrade the road (yes,
    had happened to me.) If you are short on cash, don't build or upgrade
    anything if you are not sure of the impact.

    There
    are 4 numbers you need to keep in check - Power, Water, Sewage, and
    Waste Management. Make sure they are enough to support your population.

    Make
    sure all of your residential is covered by Fire, Police, and Health.
    Wost case scenario, if there is an abandon building, you can always
    destroy it to keep your citizens happy. As long as you can keep those
    things, your citizen will always be 99% happy.

    Save money to build your dock ASAP. This is where you can start earning the golden keys. From the Dock, you can earn money too. Later, you can build Dr. Vu's lab to earn more gold keys.
    Dr. Vu will destroy some buildings with his research or experiment.
    You will get golden keys by rebuilding it. I didn't built his lab until
    I was level 18. Currently, I have 88 keys.

    Specialization
    structures are population boosters, build them if you have the money.
    The only things that I have built so far are some parks, and all
    Education facilities. I just completed building the highest facility
    for Fire, Police, and Health. They cover a big area. Once you have one
    of each, plus your smaller ones you are set from here for awhile. You
    will have a big area for your expansion. Just keep an eye on the
    numbers. You can always move your building around to boost your
    population.

    Now, how do you earn Simoleons (the cash)?
    Buy low and sell high using the Trading Depot and Trade HQ. Don't be
    too greedy by selling at the highest price. You sell at lower price,
    you can sell more. So in the long run, you will gain more by selling at
    an acceptable price. I typically sell at around 15% to 20% higher than
    the lowest price. If no one buys your item, your friend Mayor Daniel
    will buy it. My experience with him is that he will buy it after 48
    hours to 72 hours. 48 hours is the set time. I got that from EA
    support. But I think higher the price the longer for him to buy it. I
    tested by selling 10 donuts for 9500 and took him about 3 days to buy
    it. So in order to succeed in the market, you need to know your
    prices. Know the low and highest price of each item will help you
    decide to buy an item or not in an instinct. You can also sell to those
    mayors are looking for something but those can be very low price (they
    are the one that you money symbol that you can click on.) From time to
    time, they will offer at a ridiculous high price. You can decide to
    sell or not. I typically sell them iron and wood at whatever the price
    they are asking because I can make those quick.

    That all I can think of. If you have any question, feel free to post.

  • Mojod00d

    Level 20 with over 1 mil simols? Care to share your strategy in detail? I just find that hard to believe. What price do you set at?

  • Psst

    Keeping 100% of the Sims happy is only possible early in the game. As you progress, 65% is more realistic for those who want to play free. Expandling storage beyond 50 units becomes exponentially more expensive. If you sell off an expansion resource, you'll almost inevitably be offered another one,so keep looking for blue square thought bubbles from high rise buildings.
    If you find that you've overbuilt homes and havent the coin to provide all services, when residences become abandoned, bulldoze the least improved, then concentrate on improving the most imoroved buildings. Proximity to improved buildings with all basic services seens to effect the reward offered when expanding less expanded buildings, so once a reward is offered, move the building with its posted reward to a lesser proximity, and put one without a posted reward in its place, and move each buildings about to be expanded adjacent to a major buikding. Ignoring requests for buses and school costs "happiness, but not enought to make Sins move, until the city is quite large. Utilities are measured by number of DEVELOPED lots, not population. Not very realist.

    After 2 aborted games to figure out how it works, I reached +32,000 Sims , 66% happy with fire, police and health, level 17, 6 keys from shipping through the port, and about 30% of the area outside the "bad" zone yet to buildup. It took me a few hours spread over a 3 day weekend.

    • Mojod00d

      I am able keeping my Sims happiness constantly at 99%. You just need to make sure you are covering them with fire, police, water, and health, making sure no one is left out. Keep eyes on your water, electricity, waste management, and sewage number. Also keep your road properly upgraded to relieve traffic jam.

    • Will Larson

      Keeping the happiness at 90% should be your goal. It is attainable. 60's, even high 60's suggests your doing multiple things wrong.

    • micahhenning

      I'm at level 13 with a population of 97,927 at 100% happiness. (I'm stalling at this level so I can buy the Vu tower as well as the recycling center outright as soon as waste management is activated.) It's not hard at all. Just make sure that parks and all utilities cover all residential zones. I don't know if education or transportation help happiness increase, but I do know that they don't cause happiness to decrease whatsoever.

  • A Sz

    I have a problem with few public buildings that suddenly stopped
    working. I had everything covered and suddenly one fire station start s
    showing up as a residential building. Then it happened with another
    police station and one health centre. Also one residential building in
    the centre of the city shows up as sewage disposal. Any suggestions on
    how to fix it?

  • Gomrinho

    how can I recover my city after remove and instal the app ? Please

    • micahhenning

      You must sign in with Facebook or Game Center first to save the game. Then, after reinstalling the app, just reconnect.

  • Fred

    How do I upgrade buildings to the cool glas covered one's? It seems that I maxed them out early on and now I can't upgrade them any more... I have all the stores, the department buildings of education and transportation.

    • micahhenning

      If you have lots of resources which drive luxury residents (utilities that cover every residential zone, parks which cover every residential zone, essentially having 100% happiness, as well as having transportation and education options) all new residents should be upgradable to the nice glass buildings. You can bulldoze old buildings for free and rebuild them with the new designs, too.

  • Fred

    How do I upgrade buildings to the cool glas covered one's? It seems that I maxed them out early on and now I can't upgrade them any more... I have all the stores, the department buildings of education and transportation.

  • http://frontandsocial.com/ swinterroth

    Oh my gosh, this game takes for ever to play... Thanks for the tips!

  • Clint Byrum

    Disagree on not selling to the sims. The sim coins that pop up usually offer higher prices than the global trade market buyers will pay. The better priced ones can also be left unclaimed and used later as a way to take advantage of extra capacity for things that aren't needed for building.

  • Ted_C

    The biggest key I found to this game is 100% happiness and the maximized Land Values and "Luxury" values. If you enter the residential builder - there's three tabs over on the right. Make sure all your residential is dark blue for land value and make sure everything is dark orange for luxury. I'm level 15 w/ 105,000 residents. that earns me 32k coins in 24 hours. If you dont have dark orange for luxury - then the zone is missing something like transportation or education etc.. Of course, fire and police is important - but the building will be abandoned if you have this issue. 99% of the other cities I visit in the global trade hq have not maximized their population to their level.

  • Darkangellao

    I found the easiest way to make money is to buy upgrade equipment( locks, dozer blades, cameras, etc.) from other players and turn around and sell them cheaper than the max price. I buy the first 3 items(walks, cameras, & security bars) at 487-500 and sell for 600. The second group of items are bought at 600 and sold at 700. Lvl 9 right now with 200k coins and 100% happiness.

  • Brian

    I am level 43, over 600,000 residents with 99% happiness. I have tons of resources and money. All land is maximized, dark blue and dark orange. All that is left is to expand a couple more tiles. However at this point in the game that is nearly impossible. It requires 12 dozer blades/12 gears/ 12 mufflers. Anyone that has tried to purchase these in the terribly designed global HQ knows that it takes pure luck and a ton of time. To collect 36 items for each tile would take an eternity.
    I have gotten to this level and point without spending a dime.
    I now have nothing left to do in this game, I log in, collect my large sum of taxes and check the global HQ for a few minutes to try and purchase needed parts. Get frustrated and leave the game.
    I don't see any other purpose now.

  • Brian

    As mentioned in my previous post

  • naomi

    This game is a cash trap... set up to get you to pay without giving you back much in rewards. The few rewards are small and you have to wait long to get. A total waste of time and money, not worth paying to play. Demands are high and continuous. Save yourself the disappointment and aggravation! EA is now out to rob you!

  • cooldoods

    Is leveling up tied to a certain population number? I was wondering if I can level up without building additional residential areas by simply bulldozing old residential areas and build new buildings. The population count will decrease when I bulldoze but my level shouldn't decrease right? Or will my XP take longer to increase if my population count is lower than a certain level requires?

  • Etnos

    Scam business model ruining yet another franchise.

  • Ted Rogers

    I have played Clash of Clans,Boom Beach and now Simcity ,it's a good game you should download it,if making cash is difficult it doesn't means that you give up,Because that's how games are right & pro gamers don't quit cheers !

  • E71

    There are too many things off limits to free customers (namely all the stuff that are only purchasable with simcash).
    If everything was doable as a F2P "customer" then this game wouldn't be as bad.

  • ohern643

    I just went through the new simcity buildit update and my vu tower changed to a more fancy one. Now, I have to upgrade it to be able to get more keys. however, whenever I rebuild the disasters, instead of getting golden keys, i receive 500 simoleons. Is this a glitch or am I doing something wrong? Anybody else with this issue??

  • Steven Robert Fear

    just don't link it to facebook or game centre, theres a way to achieve all you desire without paying for anything and no hacks required.

  • Japster21

    I really don't mind the long wait for resources to be available. After all, this is a "pay-to-win" mobile game. It's not like I'll play it on my phone for 1 to 2 hours straight. There will always be the PC version of the game (and others, like Cities Skylines) for the more hardcore.

  • Walter Zarenko

    You sound like babies I'm doing great in the game without spending a dime. If your impatient then spend money but patience is part of the game. Rome wasn't built over night haha.

  • John Foster

    It's kinda fun. Its really slow though. They have items that are random drop, that are requirements to proceed in the game, like the video camera.you can occasionally find one on the global market, but by the time you get to the shelf to buy it, it is already sold. So your only real option is to spend real $$ to buy one... Or you can wait indefinitely until one or many spawn. In my mind, that makes for a game I don't want to play, even though I do want to play SimCity.

  • John Foster

    Sad thing is.. you can never WIN this game and you are one in millions of players, so your design will never be noticed.

  • Loren Nichols

    I have been playing this game for a few weeks. IMO it will take about $30 to $40 of real money to get past the limitations of having enough of the game currency to buy enough services and expansion land to progress. I didn't mind spending that as in my day that is about how much a program would cost. Other than that, do not spend more "real" money. The key with this game is to be patient and come back daily or twice a day to play. I am unsure if a lot of the cities you visit to buy items really exist. That is, are these cities being built buy real people or are they fictitious. ALWAYS look around each city you visit for the small blue icon that gives free items. I also think once your stores are producing high dollar items it is more advantageous to sell them than it is to use them to improve residencies.

  • Gary Burton

    Can someone please help, I reset my tablet,lost current level, still have it on drive,don't know which account or pass word,started new game & it say's it conflicks with an other city, please help

  • Roman

    I was reading a lot of comments about paying for the game. I believe that if a game holds my attention span for a bit it's worth the value of an Xbox game. We all know the expense console games are, that's why I'll invest up to that amount on a free download game that I enjoy.

  • John P Sullivan

    Somebody please build a platform where i can BUY it upfront, then build a city without the monotonous, pay-to-build SimCity bullshit. This should be renamed ScamCity.

  • Kieran Conway

    New post. I have held my city at level 13 with 55, 500 sims at 100% happy for 2 weeks now. I have fire stations, police stations and parks that cover all residential area with full power, sewage and water. Roads are 4 lane ones and because I am under 14 I am yet to be forced to provide transport buses. Yes I can only make Bricks, nails, chairs, veg, tape measures, planks, hammers. Shuvels, metal, plastic, wood, seeds, chemicals and minarals but I now have almost 300,000 simalonians. I have the ship that has so far earned me 30 keys. I love the game and have bought extra slots for storage 130 now and extra slot 10 in trade depot. I store thing for the shipments and make stuff and sell them at top rate in HQ. I keep maxing my materials and use them to make expensive items to sell. I find this method loads of fun and makes money hand over fist. If I win items to extend or increase storage I sell them straight away until I make enough to upgrade. I feel that extending and getting loads of essential straight away create total chaos and is not a good way. Good luck guys and I would by sim cash if needed to and did buy some on my ipad game because I agree that the developers deserve the money for the fun I get out of the game i have 30 simcash already just from using the method above on my android device. My ipad game has become unmanageable be good if I could transfer funds I bought on there to my new game on android though. Also it is a paid that the app will not disconnect from Facebook on my old game on ipad so I can use it on my new game. They should allow us to transfer a gamer tags funds and then delete that game info from server so I can then re conect to Facebook on my new game on android such a pain and uni fare I feel. Still love the game but hope they can sort this soon. I know some will try drag down my post but may help someone so that's why I posted peace out.

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  • Jenny

    what are you referring to INVENTORY UPGRADES? I also would like to see a Bat Signal as an optional Item to purchase for an advanced city

  • Raymond Bushelle

    I have not spent a penny playing this game. I've had no problem building a city of 1.2 million. By just using a little common sense to get what I need. This was done very passively. There are no "off limit" items where you're forced to pay, In order to build your city. I think the players that feel that way are either very impatient, Or lack the skills to avoid spending cash. Of course they are going to make some items more difficult to acquire for those individuals who just can't wait for the random grab. You give people a free pizza, and they complain because they didn't get the pop, and cinnamon sticks..

  • Cubsfan17

    I'm level 30 on my phone and level 21 on my tablet so far I have not yet once payed for anything! The game is fun yet challenging at the same time. I had at one time 199 real cash just watch the sponsored 30 sec videos sooner or later you will notice a pattern it will become easier for you.

    I enjoy the time based factory it gives your city a feel that sims are working for you the only thing I do not like is they could lower the prices on some things and lower the material costs on some items.

    If you put in the time and effort this can be played with no money if you're lazy then yes I can see it being a pay to win game buying land upgrades or getting items faster.

    Best info I can give is simply this save all your sim cash until level 30 once you hit the correct level keep doing the mayor contests and collect gifts while visiting neighbor towns. By the time you know how to play the game it will be easy and I honestly think this game blows Sim City 5 out of the water minus a few things.