Dream City: Metropolis is a mobile game developed by Storm 8. I’ve been playing for a few weeks and am currently at level 21. I have one more point of interest left to complete and one more square of land to unlock. These are a few tips I’ve learned over the last 21 levels, sometimes the hard way, and they’re in no particular order.
1 – Boardwalk Early, Boardwalk Often.
I started to do this, then I stopped, and then I deeply regretted it. World landmarks can be bought with tickets earned from completing Boardwalk board orders. If any of these strike your fancy, or you want to load up on cool-looking buildings to pad out your Civic Points, start doing Boardwalk orders as soon as they start and as often as you can. The more you complete in a row, the more balloons you’ll have the chance to pop, which means more tickets. If you skip a few, the number of balloons will go back down.
I say start early, because orders get more numerous/complex as go. Better to make several stacks of pancakes for eight balloons than several sets of cleats and dolls. The order board will only display items you have thus far unlocked. So start early and get your tickets fast. Plus, you can make a pretty penny filling out these orders, as they’re just as comparable as shop requests.
2 – Level, Land, Civic, Stars. Inventory and Supply Goods, Oh My!
I know it seems like a lot, but bear with me. It basically distills down to treating this game as you would eating a plate of food one section at a time.
This one may seem a bit weird, but I know a few people who are obsessed with leveling as fast as possible. In this game, if that’s your mindset, you’re going to rut out of room. Pace yourself and have fun. Spend your money and resources in one area at a time. For me, I leveled, built Star Points by filling orders, and used the money earned to buy civic buildings. If I had enough items, I’d aim next to earn enough money for the expansion.
Increase your inventory as soon as you can, and if you run tight on space, only focus on a few shop requests at a time. As for Supply Goods, I didn’t need to expand that inventory for many levels, even though they were unlocked.
Don’t be a hero and get too far ahead of yourself building houses to get Civic Points for the next level. The prices of houses rise after every purchase, and after certain levels, the housing prices will fall back some. It’s worth it to spend the steep coinage on civic buildings (pools, gardens, sports fields, etc), because they provide a higher Civic Point bang for the amount area they cover. If you’re going to opt out of spending on civic buildings you’re going to end up with a lot of headaches later when trying to unlock rooms in your high-rises. The more high-rises you add, the more materials you’ll need to unlock room slots. Keep this in mind when you get the “build more houses” quests. Complete them only as you need to and not to just get them out of your log book.
3 – High-Rises on High Priority
High-Rises are a must once they become available. They allow you to condense existing houses and shops into the buildings, giving you more room to build in your finite space. However, it is wise to only build them when needed. The more high-rises you build, the more materials you will need to unlock each room.
Your priorities will seem to flip half-way through the game. At first, Star Points feel super easy compared to Civic Points. Don’t be fooled and invest too much too early in housing high-rises.
In my game, at level 21, I have 5 small apartment buildings and 4 large ones with only 3 full (55 rooms total). For shops, I have 3 small commerce towers and 5 large department stores (64 room total) with a need for more. With civic buildings, Boardwalk landmarks, and point of interest discoveries, you’ll eventually reach a point where Civic Points have long been met, but you’ve got to squeeze out another 50 Star Points.
4 – Marketplace & Coffee!
The Marketplace is useful for selling items in your inventory, particularly if you have any factories without a production line for whatever reason.
Once you unlock coffee, your gold mine appears. I have made a lot of gold in my game by selling coffee in the Marketplace. When the electronic factories are unlocked, two coffees are used to make a Robobarista. Because of this, I recommend selling coffee in quantities of 2, netting a hefty 264 gold per slot.
When I played (mid-July 2016 and still going on August 2), shortly after I unlocked sugar, sugar flooded the Marketplace. It sometimes took me a day or so to sell a single bowl of it. As more people play Dream City and reach the higher levels, I think coffee might have a similar fate. With that said, long queue time items that are used to build other things are solid choices to sell in the Marketplace.
5 – Get Ahead of Yourself
If you know you’re going to be putting the game down for awhile, stock up your factories. Queue up long-timer items like sugar, coffee, and t-shirts. Queue up items you’ll go through a ton of with shop requests, like wrenches, trays, pans, thread, and pliers. You don’t have to collect everything at once, either, and save yourself some inventory space. If you don’t use what you’ve made, and your inventory is getting full, sell them in the Marketplace.
I mentioned the Boardwalk above, and it applies here. Once you finish a Boardwalk order board, the next-coming board appears as a preview. Unfortunately, it does not give you quantities. But you can still get a head-start. If you get complex items in your order, like dolls or cleats, aim to make 2 before hand. I’ve only seen items like those max out at 2. If you need to make one more, it’s no big deal. And if you have any extras, someone on the Marketplace will be interested for sure.
Staying ahead also includes the train supplies. Before bed or leaving the game for a long period of time, it’s best to choose the highest goods storage amount that you have unlocked. When you return, you will be able to empty your factories and queue up the next big batch of materials. Although, the “know thy self” saying applies here. On more than one occasion, I set the 3-hour goods and wound up playing again half an hour later, running out of goods shortly after.
6 – Points of Interest
When clearing your map, aim for the points of interest which take the form of abandoned structures. The second one is a parasailing launch point in the bottom, left corner. I didn’t notice it right away until I had collected several parachutes and couldn’t figure out what they were for. Each point of interest needs to be repaired with special items that you can only get from the mystery boxes obtained after reaching 5 stars on a shop. These special items will only drop when the section of map that the place is on or linked to is unlocked. Repairing these places nets huge Civic point gains, especially the vineyard.
7 – Have it Your Way
There’s a few rules when building your city, namely every building has to be touching a road on one side. Some structures are exempt, like factories. Does this mean you should clump them all up into one area and save space? Sure, if that’s what floats your boat. Put all your factories in a line or group them with the shops that use them – it’s all up to you.
You may have to crowd up a town square with buildings, but it won’t stay that way for long. As you expand your town, invest in high-rises and civic buildings. Your city should and will constantly evolve and change. I think that’s an element of the game that I enjoy the most, seeing how my city grows.
Customize your town so it works for you. Keeping organized in some way is not only pleasing to the eyes but encourages further city development. You don’t have to stay with rows of two. Large sections add interest and can be just as effective for space. Don’t be afraid to move points of interest to better suite your city. Move things around, switch up the roads, try new configurations. The sky’s the limit, really.
8 – Long Queues
I know it’s not everyone’s cup of tea to spend money on free mobile games, and for me, it usually isn’t. In this case, I sunk so many hours into the game, I was not opposed to giving Storm8 a few of my hard-earned dollars. Yes, the gems are useful for completing land expansions and skipping the wait time on buildings. They can also get you some pretty snazzy civic buildings. Those are all great, however, there’s one better use.
Gems can be used to add queue slots to your factories, which is particularly helpful for factories that are used frequently and factories that have short item times. For instance, my longest queue line is Tradecraft (pictured above), followed by Kitchenware, Food, and Gifts. These are useful for churning out a large batch of base materials overnight or without having to check your game every ten minutes.
I also have two slots added to Casual Wear, Sunshine, Breakfast, and Energy, because they are more complex backbones to later items. For instance, coffee and sugar are used in deserts and a robot. T-shirts are used for everything from pillows to shoes and rugs. Breakfast has toast, which is required for Bread Pudding, and Pancakes, which appear to be requested a lot.
“Finishing” factories, such as Toys, Home Decor, High-Tech, and Desserts don’t need longer queues, since their items are not requested too frequently and tend to have really long queue times.
9 – Events
Events are incredibly beneficial in Dream City. Participating in them yields exclusive buildings with Civic Points. I’ve only seen one event since I started playing, and that was a city concert event called Citypalooza. VIP passes had a chance of dropping off fulfilled shop requests, and the more VIP passes you collected, the more items you could unlock. I unlocked a permanent house option, the music cottage (same Civic points as other houses), and received a music Conservatory (+48 Civic Points, pictured above) and a Citypalooza Stage (+32 Civic Points). That’s a bonus 80 Civic Points for free.
If an event is active, it can be found in the white fenced area on the left side of the city.
10 – Start Complex and Get Simple
I find this piece of advice to be one of the more important. What I mean by “start complex” is to start factory items that are made up of multiple components. This is especially true for time management with Boardwalk orders. I learned this one the hard way after queuing up 4 Boardwalk-requested pliers (80 minutes of total queue time) only to realize I needed to make three pairs of shoes requiring thread (24 minute total queue time). The three pairs of shoes take an hour each. I could have easily made the pliers while the shoes were in queue and saved myself over an hour.
When an item is needed to be made, a clipboard for shop requests or a swing for Boardwalk orders will show up next to it. Say an oven is needed for a shop request. The oven will have a clipboard icon and so will the wrench and candle needed to make it.
I’ve been finding that items with multiple crafting levels haven’t been showing up with the “needed” icons. For example, say a food shop is requesting Bread Pudding. A clipboard will show up next to bread pudding in the dessert factory. It will also show up next to the eggs, milk, and toast in the Fresh Food and Breakfast factories. And that’s where it ends. The oven, and the wrench and candles needed to make the toast won’t have the clipboard icon. Whether or not this is a bug is still to be determined.
So, if you’re going solely based the clipboard or swing icons, you might miss needed items to craft more complex and long-queue time items. Start with those and work your way down to the simple items.
-Fifi the Ninja