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Come To The Dark Side And Manage Your Own Star Wars: Tiny Death Star

November 7, 2013

Star Wars: Tiny Death Star (Free) by LucasArts and in collaboration with NimbleBit is a simulation where you can build and manage your own Death Star — hasn’t that always been a Star War fan’s dream?

I remember back in the days when Tiny Tower was immensely popular, and I was managing my tower throughout the day for several weeks, months even. Ah yes, those were good old days, but it got tiring after a while because I didn’t really see the incentive to keep playing, after I built a very tall tower with maxed out elevators to speed everything up. While Tiny Death Star may seem like just another re-skin of Tiny Tower, there’s actually much more to the game than that, and it should definitely please any Star Wars fan.

Following the traditional Nimblebit style, Tiny Death Star is filled with cute 8-bit style graphics, and the various species of bitizens (there are humans and specific Star Wars races and characters) all move quite smoothly as they go about their business in the Death Star. To top it all off, Tiny Death Star features chiptune Star Wars music and sound effects, which I actually loved listening to — I’d sometimes leave the game open just to hear it.

If you’ve played Tiny Tower, then you will know exactly how this game goes. When you first start out, though, you’ll have to go through the annoying tutorial process, though this is a great way for anyone who isn’t familiar with Tiny Tower to understand how the game works.

Like the original, you will build levels in your Death Star and fill it with residential bitizens who will earn their keep by working, you know, so that Darth Vader and the Emperor don’t have to. Bitizens with higher skill points for certain jobs will make the waiting time shorter, and giving them their dream job doubles the quantity of item stock. However, there are plenty of differences in this one that will keep you coming back for more.

One of the biggest problems with Tiny Tower that I remember was the fact that whenever you got those special VIP bitizens who could help move things along quicker, you had to use them right away, or keep them waiting in the elevator, preventing others from getting to their destinations. Now, one of the first things that I noticed was the fact that Tiny Death Star allows you to save VIPs to use later, when you actually need them. Doing this will keep them on the Arrivals level, where you can keep up to five VIPs at a time. To use them, tap on that level and then select the one you want to use — next time there is a vacant elevator, deliver them to the floor you want.

I also noticed during my play of the game so far that you can encounter special bitizens, who are actual Star Wars characters. You can also purchase specific bitizens from the store, as well as elevator upgrades, VIPs, and specific levels (reduces the cost of adding it as well) with your ImperialBux (premium in-game currency). Your ImperialBux can also be converted into coin, and you can buy more ImperialBux through in-app purchase.

Going back to the special characters, you can unlock special scenes that will involve a funny act or something of the sort, and these are always saved to be viewed later for your reference. This adds more of a reason to keep playing and discover all characters, which is definitely nice. The first scene I got was Jar Jar Binks (or just an ordinary Gungan) in the Mos Espa Cafe, as he had the ceiling collapse on him, revealing a Jabba the Hutt from above.

You will also get random quests that involve finding a specific bitizen. Now, once you take these requests on, Tiny Death Star will keep a small panel at the bottom to show you who you’re looking for. Last time I played Tiny Tower, you had to remember how they looked since their image disappeared as you took the request. There are also ones that will involve finding Rebel infiltrators and spies that are hidden in the Death Star, and if you are asked to capture them, hilarious scenes will ensue.

Another thing that is different from the regular Tiny Tower is the addition of missions from the Emperor. He will give you goals to strive for as you manage the Death Star, and completing these will always net you more coin for spending on new levels.

Speaking of levels, there are also the special Imperial levels that can be built, which will always go underground in the basement levels. These will require the special “Supply Officer” VIPs, and they will work to gather certain materials that are needed for Imperial assignments. Having these levels definitely spices things up a bit, as it’s not only “get bitzens to your businesses and flourish” any more.

So far, I’ve been quite addicted to Star Wars: Tiny Death Star. I was a huge fan of Tiny Tower before, but this has reignited my love for it, especially since I love Star Wars (who doesn’t?). I did notice that it seems a bit harder to earn ImperialBux in this game as compared to the other NimbleBit titles, and this can be a bit annoying since the elevator upgrades keep getting more expensive and you’ll definitely want most (if not all) of the special bitizens, which can cost up to 219 ImperialBux to obtain. Still, patience is a virtue, and I’ll definitely be playing this for quite some time (it’s getting kind of hard to pull me away from it).

If you love simulation games or Star Wars, then you will definitely want to check out Star Wars: Tiny Death Star. It’s available in the App Store as a universal app for free with in-app purchases.

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