TSTO Anonymous – March 2016 – Simp-Sin City & Stuff

Hey hey hey fellow Addicts. Here we are in the third Act of an event all about gambling in the City of Simp-sin,Vegasfield, insert clever name here, and I have to say I’m loving the event. Slots, craps, poker… and the best part is I’m not losing money or killing my liver with free drinks. Good old wholesome fun for the whole family over the age of 21 lol. Of course, gambling isn’t always fun and the first thing I thought about was Marge’s gambling addiction in “$pringfield (Or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Legalized Gambling)” (S5:E10). Is it any surprise that Marge considered the effects of gambling addiction and started her own meeting?

Marge TSTO Dialogue Gamblers Anonymous

As we jokingly named this site TSTO Addicts because of how much we played and spent time on the game, I found this connection interesting. Heck… I thought the site name so funny I created a goofy twelve step program (sorry Marge… 12 is the name of the game) just for compulsive players like myself. Well, here we are about three and a half years into one of the funnest games I’ve ever played and it’s time for another TSTO Anonymous meeting. I figured we’d take a look at addiction in what I hope is a fun way.

TSTO Anonymous Vegas Edition

Addiction. Psychology Today defines it as “a condition that results when a person ingests a substance (e.g., alcohol, cocaine, nicotine) or engages in an activity (e.g., gambling, sex, shopping) that can be pleasurable but the continued use/act of which becomes compulsive and interferes with ordinary life responsibilities, such as work, relationships, or health. Users may not be aware that their behavior is out of control and causing problems for themselves and others.”

Wowza… kind of makes me rethink holding this meeting. I don’t want to be a bummer or make you think hard about visiting a site called TSTO Addicts. Are we really a bunch of compulsive tappers with out of control behavior? I hope not and to keep things light, I thought it might be fun to look at the way this portable device town-building game is advertised to analyze it’s addictive properties which were advertised right from the beginning of the journey and just provide my random thoughts.

Gambling Burns Casino Simpsons

First, this video sums up so much about the game. It’s discussion of addiction is tongue and cheek but you gotta love Simpsons animation about us.

Too funny.  I never get tired of sharing this video.  Like I said above, the signs of possible addiciton appear right when you first view the app in your respective store.  Here’s what the Oogle play and Mapple App Store has to say about the game:

THIS GAME IS LIFE-RUININGLY FUN! Homer accidently caused a meltdown that wiped out Springfield. D’OH! Now, it’s up to you to rebuild it! From the writers of The Simpsons, tap into a city building game that lets you create your own living, breathing Springfield… for FREE.

TSTO app store

The first taste is free, right? I laugh when I read that but it’s basically true. Right from go you start building and pseudo-designing. There’s even a mission to get you to spend donuts to rush something. What a rush, it’s faster. That’s what life seems to be about too much these days. Faster. Quicker. Now. Are we there yet? Look mom, the line is only fifteen minutes, let’s go now!  But the pitch doesn’t stop there, there’s a whole itemized list for anyone who didn’t immediately download the game because it’s The Simpsons.

HOW FUN IS IT? LET US COUNT THE WAYS! (I really want to say one one thousand, two one thousand like Roger Rabbit whenever I hear lines like this. Not surprising it’s set up like the beginning of familiar cheesy love poems. You’re prepared to love this game. Addiction is no fun if you hate the way it makes you feel.)

1. First, you can get it for free!

I think we covered this. Now, now now, gimme, gimme, gimme, oooh that hits the spot, now I want more.

2. Make Springfield just like you want it.

What could go wrong in a world that’s completely in your control until you realize this isn’t completely true and like all life, there are certain parameters to be followed and rules that you can’t coerce into being other than they are.  You can’t always get what you want, but you can try sometimes… and you get what you need.  Sorry… had a little Rolling Stones moment.  I guess in the end my Springfield is how I want it to be.  If it wasn’t, I’d change it like the four redesigns I’ve already done.  I may be due for another in the future but time will tell.

TSTO app store Build Springfield

3. Help Homer find Marge, Bart, Lisa, and the rest of his family and friends! (Ned Flanders, too.)

Pretty self explanatory. Weird to think there was a time you couldn’t earn all of Homer’s family. Now there’s not the Maggie drug to aspire to, I guess all that’s left is Chip Davis and the demise of all things addictive if you believe the doomsdayers.  This line is straight forward and true.

4. Complete tasks to earn… mmm, donuts!

Here we go… at this point you have no clue that donuts is the acceptable currency to get most of the cool stuff. There’s no warning that they cost hard-earned money.  It’s just a salivatory treat that you hopefully know are synonymous with one Homer Jay Simpson. It’s later that the TSTO pusher man will explain the importance of premium currency. Mmmm… empty bank account.

Homer plays TSTO

5. Make Apu work ridiculously long shifts at Kwik-E-Mart.

I guess if you have something against Mr. Nahasapeemapetilon, this might sound like something fun and sadistic to do on a regular basis. Any fan of the show worth their salt probably knows that Apu likes to work a lot though so it’s not necessary to read to much into this. 168 hours is a riduclously long time though. Apu Beaumarchais is a work addict though.  Maybe there’s something there?

6. Grow and harvest Tomacco on Cletus’s Farm.

Oooh… Tomacco.  Now there’s a crop culled from the TV Series that should immediately bring addiciton to mind.  Thank goodness we don’t have to deal with rampaging animals addicted to the crop.  All we have to do is grow it on Cletus’ farm.  Speaking of, do people even grow stuff there anymore?

7. Party down with Duffman at Duff Brewery.

Alcohol addiction… check.  We all know Homer and the barflys and Moe and alcohol and shenanigans in the Best. Show. Ever.  Oh yeah!  I’m seeing a theme of addictive things already.  Red flags abound.  I’m also thinking there’s probably a great term paper about this subject buried within the show but that’s something for another day not related to this site.  For now we can just party down… nothing bad ever happens at a party, right?

8. See how your Indolence, Consumerism,and Gluttony stack up on the Conform-o-meter.

I don’t know why but whenever I think of this meter, I always think of the 7 deadly sins.  I’m not about to get preachy but none of these mentioned values brings positive images to my brain.  They do intrigue me though and I think the hook is fairly set by this point for any fish thinking of downloading the app.  Conform to the app, play the app, love the app.

9. Enjoy exclusive animated scenes sure to please fans of TV’s longest-running comedy.

Exclusive?  If you weren’t hooked yet, this should be the big bang that starts your universe.  We all like to have something others don’t.  Why else would appeal to the masses fallacies be so effective?  I like feeling special… I get it.  Here’s the thing… we are all unique just like everyone else.  TSTO has been downloaded by millions of people.  We are the o.ooo3% lol.

10. Visit your friends’ Springfields, play pranks, collect cash and earn special rewards with friendship points the only way to measure your friendship.

Friends sounds nice.  There’s a community.  Good fences make good neighbors and all that fun stuff.

11. Build up entirely new sections of Springfield from the rides at Krustyland to the performers on the Waterfront!

Whether you like them or not, Squidport and Krustyland were advertised right from the get go.  By this point in the list, I’m pretty excited for the game although I have to admit I never even read this before downloading this life-sucking game on my android phone in October 2012.  They had me at Simpsons.

TSTO app store Krustyland TSTO app store Squidport

12. And did we mention… it’s free to play?

The perfect bookend.  It’s free.  Lots of fun at no expense to you.  The life-ruiningly fun thing has to be a joke.  Just a new game you’ll probably play for a while until the next city-builder game appears to draw your attention elsewhere.  And here we are after how much time?


With HD graphics – you’ll get an eyeful of greener greens, yellower yellows, and more.

IS THAT ALL? Of course not! Did you know that you can even play this game in French, Italian, German, Spanish, Simplified Chinese, Korean, Russian, Danish, Dutch, Norwegian, Swedish, Traditional Chinese, Thai, Turkish and Brazilian Portuguese?
But who wants to read all this text on a screen? So you should CHECK OUT THE SCREENSHOTS because the screenshots really sell it… even though we really don’t have to sell this game… because it’s FREE!

And it’s not just for elitist Americans.  The whole world can play and become addicted to the game.  Heck… three strangers who met on an internet site about the game might even start a website and write helpful things to get you through it all.  You might run into the most interesting people who are playing the game while you go about your normal life.  You might chat online with folks from different time zones and locales.  You might create art in your town or unique designs and share the photos.  Your whole family could play the game together. High definition fun, fun, fun and it’s free, free, free.

Ned TSTO Dialogue Freemium Phone Game Anonymous

Don’t worry Ned… we already did.  I don’t know about you but I’m sold and it didn’t take long before this game had me by the scruffy parts.  I enjoy the heck out of this silly mobile game and I know I’m not alone in that.  Sure we have a Vegas event currently and sure it takes time to do stuff in the game but that’s why we have sites like this to help out, and share thoughts, and do whatever it is we do here.  The whole point is having a safe and friendly community where you can be you and enjoy a silly mobile game.

Now for the serious part.  I’d be remiss if I didn’t say something about true addiction.  I sincerely hope this game doesn’t keep people from important things, doesn’t take money aways from necessities or bills, doesn’t impact relationships in a harmful way.  If it does… stop playing.  I’ve met a few people who couldn’t hack the obsessiveness of the game and thank Jebus, they stopped before doing any crazy damage that I know of.  This is supposed to be fun.  When it’s not… you’re done or you take a break.  Premium things are nice if you can afford them but there’s tons to enjoy about this game without hurting the bank account.  I genuinely care about folks who visit this site so if you really are truly addicted, maybe it’s time to have a heart to heart or intervention or something.  It’s a game and real life is much more important.

Well, that was an interesting journey.  Sorry to end on a down note but it had to be said.  My name is Joe “The Wookiee” Riot and I am a member of TSTO Addicts.  I love this game but balance playing it and blogging about it as responsibly as I can with the real world.  Homer and the gang can wait when priorities come knocking at the door.  I truly hope it’s the same for you and I’m always having a blast enjoying the piss out of this game with like-minded individuals.  Now to wonder if this whole enterprise was me completing Marge’s 8 hour task IRL.

Marge Gambling Anonymous Task TSTO

What are your thoughts?  Did you ever read the app store advertising?  Think about how you balance mobile gaming/online stuff with your real life?  Why did you start playing?  How are you liking the event?  Did Marge’s dialogue make you laugh like me?  Share your thoughts or ramble about whatever.  I’m off to homework and other work and life and stuff.  We end this meeting as we usually do with the TSTO Anon Serenity Prayer.

“EA, grant me the serenity to accept the updates I cannot change, the courage to recommend the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”

Much love… TTFN… Wookiee out!

57 responses to “TSTO Anonymous – March 2016 – Simp-Sin City & Stuff

  1. Responding to your question: I’m constantly growing triffids (and speeding them up with witch Marge’s task) to get me to the bonus level ups faster. Not sure how much of a difference it does actually make, but hey, it’s a habit.

  2. BraveElfgirl1994

    Gabbo and Arthur:

    Is his name Arthur or Crandal? In the dialoge between them, Gabbo repeatedly calls him Crandal.

  3. My family say I’m an addict …but like any true addict I am in denial!

    …Bring on the next event I’m ready ☆

  4. Seriously guys, I have a dissertation to write but find myself planning my tapped out moves for the day before doing any study, and the casino event, well, my life revolves around martini glasses right now… Honors degree? What honors degree?

    • Glad this game wasn’t around while I was studying otherwise I might never have made it!

      Good luck

      • When I am studying, many things do not exist. Cell phones were the super big sized type and only owned by rich business man. Internet is not available but email has started. I found my first girlfriend through a chat programme via the university private LAN. When I stay in the university halls, there is only one phone serving the block and the line is always hot with someone on it. I do not have a computer and I use the computer in school to write my reports using WordPerfect or WordStar. Learning Lotus 123 was for database management. We used AutoCAD to do technical drawing then. Life was so much simple then. Going to Karaok seemed to be very popular then. Very little distraction to study then.

  5. My name is Michael and I am an addict…

    Been wondering when I started playing this game because I couldn’t for the life of me remember – thought it was during 2013 but wasn’t sure…

    Checked back at what events I could remember to see and was fairly sure it was mid-2013…

    But now I know!

    06/02/2013! (That correct simp7fan? 😊)
    2 June 2013

    And I could have saved myself some time by just going straight to the source…

    In case anyone else would like to check I did the following:
    My Account
    Basic Information – Member Since: 06/02/2013!

    I created an EA Account when I started so now I know how long I have been addicted

    • Hey Michael if you need a Neighbor-eeno to look in on when you’re bingeing, my name is Sarah and I’m an addict too. (Gotta Catch’em all!)

      • Hi Sarah

        Please send me a request (same username as here) as I only have 1 space available and that is reserved for someone to whom I have sent a request 😄😄😄

        However, apart from the request that I have sent, I currently have a full compliment of active neighbours – although it’s hard to know during an event without checking every one individually… My policy is only to kick people if they have been inactive for a couple of weeks. If you are happy to wait a little while I’m sure a space will open up soon – and you will be number 1 on the list 😄😄😄

      • Hi Sarah

        Came across an inactive. Request sent 😄

  6. “… Interferes with ordinary life responsibilities, such as work…” Yeah, it does that! Not in a major way but there have been many times when I’ve delayed leaving for work by 10 mins or so to clear some thumbs and set the new jobs. I’m lucky that sometimes I can work from home and I probably do that more than I should during events! Oh, and I definitely wake up in the middle of the night more than I want to.
    Yes, I’m addicted, but I can handle it…
    Hmmm, just remembered I’ve played every single day since I started during Clash of Clones, maybe a few days off wouldn’t hurt.

  7. Yes. This game is life ruiningly fun. I used to make full use of my time, learning new words or reading articles or trying to connect some scientific facts with regards to this universe. But once I got hooked to this game, I ended up very homer and zombie like. My mind is blank most of the time and I am having sleepless nights now. Also, I am addicted to this website. Many days this is the only site I access on a daily basis. If people ask me whether to play this game, I would tell them not to get started :p

  8. I fully admit I’m a tapping addict!! I have reached the last level ( so far, it’s level 59) and I still tap away while watching movies or TV. I have missed many shows that way. I’m proud to say I’m a TSTO addict!!

    Sorry, first time I have left feed back on here for this game. ****

  9. I’m not gonna say that at any given moment I have multiple timers on my phone to remind me when the casino ends, when Maggie ends, when the rocket ends, when the hour is up at the rail yard, when the daily challenge opens again, when the current questline ends.

    I’m not gonna say that…

  10. At least (hopefully) none of us have had to sell our bodies to be able to afford enough donuts to buy the Vegas wives, right?

  11. I mean, I probably shouldn’t spend $300 to $400 a year on a game. I know this. But I’m a completest. Aside from the ugliest and most useless characters on TSTO I have EVERYTHING except The Swanky Fish Restaurant. I know this and it eats at me lol. I justify my addiction by comparing it to my friends and family who spend hundreds on gaming systems and multiple games a year. $300 a year on Tapped Out is about the same as buying 5 – 6 video games a year. That brings them joy and this game brings me joy!

  12. Thanks Wookie, but I couldn’t read the whole thing,
    I’m in denial about how much time the game takes up, don’t want to face the addiction, and just the other day I was thinking about how we buy premium stuff, we’re spending hard earned cash to have a different group of little pixels on our screens,
    Does that release chemicals in our brains? Does it make us happy?
    I thought somebody should write a post from a psychological point of view explaining the thought processes that make us do it. Not even the money thing, ……what makes sane adults set alarms to wake up during the night?
    You would think we should all be sad, single people, but comments here don’t back that up, we seem to be normal people with families, jobs, pets, car, mortgage, etc. etc.
    So why do we do it?, why do we tap those yoga mats? How many times do we have to tap yoga mats to get to a billion? (Even now, the mathemagicians among us are trying to work that out)
    I don’t even know where I’m going with this, (I rarely do) and I always feel like I’m stating the obvious stuff that everybody else already knew.
    Everybody likes the Simpsons, and it’s now old enough that the younger players among us have had the Simpsons around all their life, the game is good fun to play, we must have an instinct to want to complete/collect things.
    The main thing is community, it’s this place that allows us to talk to others with the same addiction, gets us excited about stuff in the game, helps us with strategy, it’s the community feel on this site that keeps us addicted,


  13. Dear Wookie,

    Unrelated-ish. So I finally completed the Act 3 Questline and got the pop-up tease for the next update. I know I can’t share my thoughts (yet) and presume it is You (Wookie) whom is going to tackle the post regarding the possabilities, once again I am willing to collaborate if you seek. Since you had a head start, you might already be finished with such a post. (I so want to leave an obvious hint but … Must… Resist…)

  14. I don’t having a tapping problem, I have a tapping solution.

  15. BraveElfgirl1994

    Confused. Is the ventriloquist name Arthur or Crandal? Its says Gabbo and Arthur everywhere but in their dialoge Gabbo calls him Crandal.

  16. Priorities 1. Work 2. TSTO addicts 3. TSTO 4. Faith? 5. Family?
    (Something like that)

  17. #TstoAddictandproud

  18. Hello, my name is James, and I am TSTO Addict, oh, and I am a TSTO Addict, if the name wasn’t obvious enough.

    Definitely agree with everything that has been said in this blog, and the comments thus far. I do find TSTO “fun” or I wouldn’t be playing and putting money into the game. With that said, although its my own fault, I tend to put too much money into this game when it can be spent elsewhere. Sure I pay all my bills in full, and on time. I make sure of that. But y’know, there’s some months I spend more on TSTO than I do food for the month. Pfft, food who needs that right? lol

    I do find at times the event portion of TSTO kinda seems to run my life however. I’ll be at my parents or whereever, not think to bring my tablet with me, and all through the family meal all I can think about is, I got to get home to tap X character so I can get the next bit of dialogue to progress a storyline and/or renew the tasks so they can start another four hours much like this Casino event.

    Trying to think back, I believe there was only one event that near the end I wasn’t completely enjoying, as it seemed to run long. Can’t recall which one it was though lol. Terwillegers maybe? (Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad to have Cecil and Bob as playable characters in my town) Tapball? I dunno there was one that seemed to have no end.

    • The one that felt to me the most like it went on way too long was my first event, Clash of the Clones. It was a fun event and all, but I got soooo sick of all of the battles after a while.

      • I can imagine. Wasn’t around during Clones, but think I had a similar feeling with tapball, so I’m more inclined to think it was that event for me so far.

    • I think it was Tap Ball. I just could’ve keep playing the matches for bonuts anymore…I mean, I stopped like 1 day early (but you don’t know when they force update you). That and THOH 2015.

      • More on THOH: I was kinda fatigued with the setup (that got us all those wailing walls) and then annoyed when they changed a lot of the setup in the third act. (I can’t be pleased. 😉)

      • Yeah, bonuts are always good, but I recall this event was, or at least seemed to be a month long. Three weeks is long enough IMO.

    • Eating is cheating!

    • I had Terwilliger fatigue for sure, that was one long continual grind and probably the start of my sleep deprivation and still couldn’t craft nearly all I wanted to. Will probably wait until forced to update on this event because I want all the fountains, spotlights and greenery I can get my little designer hands on.

      Like someone else has said, I miss my attention span. Since playing TSTO novels have given way to internet articles. *le sigh. At least I’ve been playing long enough that I have the premium items I want and I’m becoming more selective so premium spending is slowing down.

      • See that’s why I inntially thought it was Terwillegers event, but could have been Tap Ball as well as after a while those “games” got monotonous. Every event has been fun for sure, but near the end gets to be more of a grind imo.

      • Know what you mean about the attention span…haven’t finished my book group book the last couple of months. Of course, I also blame this site for some of that…at least as addicted to this as to the game itself. And working 6 days a week hasn’t helped…

        I’m so sick of feeling negative — something’s gotta give!

  19. You know you’re an addict when you spend REAL MONEY on FAKE DONUTS or wake up at 2am so you can get an extra 10 spin tokens to play at your fake casinos. Lol. Great game. Can’t wait for the next event. Hopefully the “Las Vegas desert scenery” includes Ramrod, ice pick & the hell Satan’s of Bakersfield.

  20. I love this game because when i play it, i forget about the bad things in my life. It give’s me joy and a little bit of happiness
    . For me, it helps me every day to laugh and enjoy the little things in life. Ofcourse i don’t play the game all day ( i don’t work at the moment bc i’m ill but i still have a life, house doesn’t cleans itself 😉 ) but i still play a couple of hours :p. My mom also plays this game after a long hard day at work for relaxing, so Yeah you can call us addicted 🙂

  21. When I completed the last part of th Vegas quest line today I got a message saying a desert themed update was coming soon. What do you guys think this “desert” update will entail?

  22. I starters this game when I was in and out of hospital, I had so much time sitting around just tapping away…
    “can I take some blood”
    “Hold up, just putting these characters on task”

  23. Hahahahaha…..great post. There were a few times I thought maybe this game was interfering with my normal (hold on, need to check for casino players to tap, okay I’m back) life. This game has actually helped me. I am retired from the Air Force and after almost 22 years of constantly being busy and traveling and stress I didn’t know what to do with my new found extra time. I found this game (being a huge Simpsons fan all my life) and instantly fell in tap, tap, tap love! It is very relaxing to me and it helps me occupy my new free time 😀 I have never been a huge gamer mobile or otherwise but I was I was instantly addicted to these little yellow people! As far as real money being spent I have a little OCD with completing the character collections so I focus on buying them. It’s not to bad. I look at it as part of my entertainment money in my budget. Like going to movies or eating out.

    Thank you Allissa, Wookie and Bunny for all of your hard work helping us navigate our worlds!

    My name is John and I am a TSTO addict 😀

  24. great post. Loved that video too. It’s insane how much time i’ve devoted to this game. I always thought the farming games seemed really stupid and never got interested but then along came The Simpsons Tapped Out and well holy crap my life=OVER.
    Can’t tell you how many times during an Event I would wake up in the middle of the night so that I could tap thumbs and then start them on their event currency related tasks and then go right back to bed.
    Loved this last event and love having Gabbo in my TSTO game finally!!

  25. Lol…made me think there…I actually have the game running on my tablet & use my phone to pull up TSTO Addicts…I get mad at myself for not starting the game when it 1st started so that I could’ve participated in the Whacking Day event…I’ve went from 100% freemium to spending $$ now..my husband buys lotto tickets IRL & I buy lotto tickets from Apu hoping to win 100 donuts. Needless to say,, he teases me a bit. I cannot seem to do a quick check-in,,I stay for hours in my lil game doing I’m not even sure how/why/what I do for that long! Into the night. OMG…I think I’m addicted!!

  26. Wow – you’re right…this DOES sound like a fun game. I’ll have to give it a try!

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