Friday Filler – We Binge, Because We Can…

Thank Grog It’s Firday!

I’m not gonna lie.  I am rushing this event like crazy. The first reason is my fault…I’m super busy right now.  The second reason is a bit more complex.

It’s not that this event is boring as all get out (it is), or that the content is kinda strange (it is), or even that the dialogue isn’t worth reading (it is).  It is really because we have slowly been trained as a society to take the shortest path, to the greatest reward, offering almost instant gratification, in almost all parts of our lives.

The urge to binge is all around us.  The urge to press a button and get what we want, faster than ever, and in some cases as much as we want (and often more than we need) has never been more prevalent.

And EA, and the way this game has evolved, has done this to us, and to the greater game overall.
TSTO and online gaming certainly aren’t the only culprits in modern society. I remember when waiting for a new episode of a TV show was something you looked forward to.  “NBC Thursdays” or waiting for the next episode of the “Soprano’s” was actually an event.

And then came along Netflix, which allowed you to binge an entire “season” of a show in a day.  Heck…I even remember when “seasons” where 24 episodes or more. Now, a “season” of something that is “binge-worthy” is 6 to 10 episodes.

And, the writers seem to know this. If you actually had to wait for a week to watch the next episode of something like “the Outsider,” you’d have to go back and watch the end of the episode before, to figure out who is alive, and who is dead, and who may be in two places at the same time, but NOT the one eating the animals. It’s like they KNOW we are going to binge watch it.

The other part of this “binge training” comes from too damn many shows to possibly watch, and still have a life. I admit readily, to being one of those who saw the Netflix (or was it Hulu, or Amazon Prime?) TV show, “Fleabag” sweep the Golden Globes and Emmy Awards for best comedy, and best writing, and decided to “Binge” the entire offering.

As it turns out…”Fleabag” is two, six-episode seasons long. And each episode was only 26 minutes in length.  That’s NOT a “Series!” That’s just a long, “director’s cut” of a movie.  That’s only a little over five hours long…start to finish!  Heck…Scorsese’s “Irishmen” was almost that long. But, they had the good grace to at least call it a movie!  But, I digress…

The whole thing with a good binge, is that you can follow the story easily. In fact, I have become so enamored of the concept of “the binge,” that I have started recording a whole season of a show,  forcing myself NOT to watch it, until I have almost or all of the season “in the can,” and then indulging in a weekend binge.

That can be murder on a weekend…and really requires you to be sick, snowed in, or agoraphobic.   I have an almost full season of the new “Ray Donovan” waiting for me.  I am considering doing that with the new season of “Better Call Saul,” but I doubt that I will be able to hold off. I LOVE that show.

What is EAsy to Binge, is TSTO right now.  Because we can donut farm, and because blowing through an entire act in a few minutes is infinitely more rewarding than schlogging through it. I am binging the hell out of it.

And as it turns out…doing this actually makes the dialogue better! It’s way easier to follow the convoluted weirdness of the writing in this “Act.”

I get it. It’s supposed to be funny (as in odd) that Abraham the First is Yellow…and his Mom is Yellow (with blue hair) and his Dad is black.

I mean, let’s be honest. If we go back far enough in our genealogy, we ALL have some black ancestors. It’s where this whole experiment called “humans” started.

Gender: Male ♂
Status: Deceased
Hair: Blond
Relatives: Father: Virgil Simpson
Mother: Mabel Simpson
Great Grandson: Abraham Simpson
Grandson: Orville Simpson
Great Great Grandson: Homer Simpson
Great Great Great Grandchildren: BartLisa and Maggie Simpson
Son: “Old Tut” Simpson

But the rest of the writing and tasks for the event are just, plain, stupid and lazy.

Case in point.

When Abe ( who by any reasonable estimate of time/age is close to 150 years old), decides to jump into the river and ride a log home, he actually does so in the Brown House. Even though we have LOADS of rivers and Water and Logs…

But no…the tasks are in THE BROWN HOUSE!!!  This place is apparently a complete time/space vortex. Because the whole chapter plays out there. In the house. Not a river. Not near a log. In the house. 

In fact…the entire “episode” with Abe, his Dad, and the river all happen in the house. It must have one HUGE basement!

It’s like the opposite of a binge.  You have to watch a couple of minutes of action, and a few lines of dialogue, play out over hours, if not days (depending on how often you log in).

Why in the heck would I play this in real time???? Waiting hours, and hours, and setting my timer, just to have a few bits of lazy writing, and ridiculously lazy tasks unfold over a day or two.  BOOM!!!!  BINGE!!!  Move on with my life.

What is clear in the event, is that the writers and EA are sending us a message. They are testing just how far we will sink to remain loyal to the game…by making it harder to care.  They are basically saying, “Go Ahead. BINGE! Farm donuts…and Binge Your Asses Off!”  They sure aren’t making the effort to make it worth playing in real time.

The world is simply becoming one big Binge.  Imagine of you had to wait a week between episodes of “Fleabag,” just to reach the obvious logical conclusion.  She’s still a mess. She is pretty much an awful person. There was just no place else for the story to go.  Once you defile a priest (spoiler alert) you are pretty much done with trying to have a nice, normal relationship again.  I am thankful that it was only twelve 23-minute episodes. Because, just like TSTO, I am trained to finish what I start…even though I am grimacing and sweating my way through it…as the Life Currency of time itself, is flushed away.

I am lost to the binge.  For book club, I ordered a box of original “Cafe Du Monde’ Beignet Mix” from Amazon grocery.  I ordered it from Prime Grocery, because it would be delivered to me in ONE day. If I ordered it from Cafe Du Monde’ it would have taken a week.  I wanted beignets.  I bought the oil (cottenseed for authenticity) , the mix, and the bag of powdered sugar, and had it delivered to my door.  I din’t have to stop watching “Fleabag” to do this. And, when I made the beignets, I made enough for everyone to have 4 each…and it wasn’t enough.  We binged on beignets…and didn’t think a thing of it.

We binged, because we could. Just like watching the entire season of something in a weekend…or blowing through an entire 10-day act in a matter of minutes. It was excessive….and we didn’t give a damn.

I’m not sure how much longer I will keep tapping.  The fact that I HAVE to binge to get any pleasure out of the game, is not lost on me. I will keep going out of dedication to Alissa, and the legacy we have created here.  But, damn…more isn’t better. And I just can’t imagine logging in every 4 hours…for the kind of weak, lackluster rewards, and lazy quest-lines we have been getting.

In the end…we binge to save ourselves from admitting that there is a greater problem we are ignoring.  But, when you are on your 4th beignet…it just doesn’t matter.

OH…and for the record…I agree with Wookie.  That is NOT a finger that Matt was trying to slip by us in the opening screen. It is an appendage a little lower…and no matter how many donuts Abe feeds it, the good doctor is still asking it to “cough.”


38 responses to “Friday Filler – We Binge, Because We Can…

  1. While I rushed the last round of the last 2 acts [just 1 character Act 1 and short 30 hard hats Act 2 so my 2 premiums 2x for 8 donuts] for the most part, I’m grinding just so I have something to do in the game week to week. I’d rather have the delayed gratification. I still have some worthwhile things in the Yearbook mystery box but it’s few and far between so I have to refresh a lot before I get to a worthwhile grouping and then I’ll parcel that out over time. In the new group I had Lincoln and his cabin and drew that first, so I have that questline (2 actually) to entertain me too.
    I didn’t start farming until they released God. I hadn’t bought donuts since they released the Donut Factory and got enough donuts from the factory, Where’s Maggie and Daily Challenges to meet my needs but I didn’t have near enough to purchase to God and his payout for the 24hr task was a farmers dream. I was however sitting on over $500 million in game cash (700+ now). I usually only use the collider for a day or 3 and bloodmobile just enough donuts to get whatever premium item I want. I like to play sound on to hear the voiced characters (I could do without hearing about Ralph’s full diaper though) and the XP collider noise sounds to me like a knife cutting through aluminum foil. For this event I knew I’d have to get all the premiums, turned the collider on for 10 days to bank a few so I could put all the SH buildings back in storage. Btw- I stored the obnoxiously large exclusive resorts first and it had no effect on my bonus %. I probably would have banked a lot more if not for the irritating BSOD.
    I’m not ready to give up yet. I’ve got my first item warning limit at 10,000+ items which curtails my landscaping ambitions but TSTO is my drug of choice IDK if I’ll switch to another game without my beloved Simpson’s characters which is a huge part of it’s appeal, wean myself off or limp along to the end, time will tell.

    • Glad to hear you are “still in it.” I got my first warning for limits, more than three years ago. I have been “Locked Out” by the hard limit, for almost a year. It takes the “care” out of “why should I?” if you love the game for the design aspects.

  2. I was wondering if you would like to renew some fervor and joy for TSTO by revisiting your favorite decorations, street types, and skins that TSTO hasn’t brought back through the yearbook yet (I’ve been playing for 3 years and still have yet to see so much—a big reason I keep tapping and hoping for the old to be offered again!). I have had all the yearbook stuff for some time now, didn’t have much I didn’t already have in the Black Friday deals, but still hope for wish for Christmas lights, building skins, airport roadway, ice roads, and much more! Maybe ask the community what non-yearbook stuff they’d like to see offered in an updated yearbook? When the yearbook first came out, that was so much fun, and gave a bunch of us fans some goals to work towards. It’s akin to teenagers discovering the music of their parents and grandparents—there’s plenty of it and it seems new to them.

    • Well…unfortunately for me, the Yearbook is full of stuff I didn’t want in the first place…and because I hit the hard item limit almost a year ago, I can’t really place the stuff I “win,” without sacrificing something I already have placed.

  3. I also rushed through each stage of this event. I haven’t played “regular” TSTO in months. I want to quit altogether but like you I feel the need to follow through until EA pulls the plug. I’m old school too…finish what you started. I log on in the morning for a couple reasons, to see if the game still exists and do the daily task. If it’s the beginning of that weeks event, I’ll rush it through. It takes some time ( more then I really want to waste) and I hate it because it’s soooo boring. The major reason I still come to the game is because one of my neighbors and I tag each other and have been doing so for months. I feel happily obliged to tag . It’s my FUN of the game, not the actual playing of mindlessly tapping away for useless content. I can’t progress in the game anyway since I’ve reached all the limits there are.
    I don’t have Hulu, Netflix or any other service other then my AT&T . I also like to watch a whole series of shows in one setting, so I’ll patiently wait for the show to end so I can watch the whole season, skipping through all commercials, in short time. The problem is, there are so many shows I like, I run out of space on my DVR so sometimes I’m forced to watch or delete something I’ve recorded. I’ve been tempted to Hulu or Netflix but then I’d never leave my couch. I could sit there, eating beignets or other guilty pleasures and binge on tv but in short time you would see me on tv. I’d be on one of those shows where people have to cut a whole in the side of your house to get me out because I binged to the point of weighing over 700 lbs. and tearing down a wall would be the only way out of my house.
    Maybe we should start guessing when the game will be shut down and have some kind of contest but what kind of prize would the winner get……boatloads of donuts?

  4. Sometimes a big yellow finger is just a big yellow finger. Oh who am I trying to kid……………………………..

  5. I’m going to defend fleabag just for the sake. Over here in the UK it was made for release on the BBC, and was a weekly episode. Because series 2 was quite late, that meant it was effectively 30 months for those 12 episodes. The wait built up its reputation, which, added to it being quite good anyway, very much spread. So we had it proper here. But I so know what you mean. As much as I keep wanting to find the next episode of “Picard” (the thing feels like a movie anyway) kudos on just being a weekly release, keeping interest high.

    In the game, I’m now fully aware that doughnuts killed it. I had a pretty high % anyway and had emptied the year book, when the glitch with the wailing walls happened. I’m now bored rigid with the game. I have no need to clear tasks for two reasons. a. I have max money and thousands of doughnuts and b. It takes me 15 minutes. For what? Another 6 doughnuts (without collider). Meh. So I’m doing the tasks, but little else. I’m almost thinking of storing my walls…

    • I liked “Fleabag,” in a general sort of way. But, found her character to be incapable of learning anything of value about life. The bit with the Priest was a nice twist…and I liked the way he seemed to “vibe” when she did her “talking to the camera” bit. Kinda funny…like he was inside her head. But, the way it played out was just kind of sad for everyone involved.

  6. To slow, disconnects to many time, I give up, no enjoyment, if I want to binge I will drink beer and smoke cigarettes lol

  7. I have been binge watching for over 30 years now. I still have season of unwatched shows on VCR tapes in my basement. The DVR (Tivo) made it a lot easier, then DVDs of whole seasons at the library. Now you don’t even have to get out of bed. I just finished three seasons of the Marvelous Mrs. Maisel and have the third season of The Handmaid’s Tale waiting for me at the library. 🙂

    One advantage of having multiple games is that I can fast forward using one donuts on one game, and take it slowly on the others. Although the amount is large, because of the extra time, it really isn’t that much of a challenge. Once when you wake up, once before you go to bed, and once some time in the middle of the day is sufficient. It takes me more time to switch games then to do the tasks.

    • I think we have another great insight into your personality, Charles. “I still have season of unwatched shows on VCR tapes in my basement.”

      Yikes. Again…I get it. For you, more is better. Lots more.

  8. If you can afford all the Amazon or Google connected thermostats, TV’s, appliances, groceries/fast-food delivery etc. Also work from home you really have no need to leave the couch these days.
    This was the goal 50 years ago..

    • LOL… it was never my goal, and still isn’t. I work from home…but very much appreciate and need the interaction between real humans. It’s why I golf, belong to a couple of service organizations, and regularly attend live music and other events. I like interacting with people. Which is why I continue to blog here, way after I stopped really liking the game.

      But…even though I make my living in tech…there is no freakin’ way I’m going to hand over my house to the “smart house” concept. The Wifi goes down, and so does your house. No thanks. And Nest? Or those voyeuristic doorbells? No thanks. I don’t need anyone watching me take the garbage out in my sweats and slippers on trash day.

  9. Remember when this game was fun?

    Also, have you seen the movie Jojo Rabbit?
    I’m really good in it. Even though I die in the end.

    • I always find it weird how you claim/deflect your “alter ego.” The great thing about JoJo Rabbit, is that it shows what a complete moron Hitler was. Those who celebrate or emulate him get the same label in my book. I have always been bemused by your screen name…but, then I am guessing, that is exactly the reaction you are going for.

  10. You nailed all the major bullet points regarding Black History Month Event & EA’s lack of everything they’ve done with it, Sir (as a Union Steward who’s been very busy during the Nevada Democratic Caucus, I wish I had virtual 🍩’s to expedite thru some of what’s going on) 🤦🏼‍♂️

    No effort on my end to play this Event means I truly do concentrate on more important things away from TSTO (but I don’t want a Game App that sucks due to more Tappers backing away from it!) 🤔

    I grew up used to a 🇬🇧 version of a TV Series (6 to 8 Episodes, broadcast every 6 months with a Holiday Special), so coming to 🇺🇸 and seeing a TV Series broadcast 26 – 30 Episodes over a year (with repeats) was an awkward adjustment …. so ”Fleabag” reminds me of a short Miniseries (remember those? or am I really going to feel really old mentioning a long Miniseries such as The Thorn Birds, North & South, Shogun) aka the equivalent to a multi night broadcast that captured your attention so that you definitely made sure to watch every night at the same time it was broadcast OR video taped everything to watch later (remember when TSTO used to capture your attention?) 😉

    I have no shame spending 🍩’s getting thru Act 1 & Act 2 (More Grinding Less Rewarding isn’t going to encourage me to spend time in a Game App). I will probably do the same thru Act 3 and Act 4 (unless I don’t care for the Content – I can easily wait for something better) and I’ve given up on continuity! 😂

    Am I glad nobody is defending EA? Yes, you can’t defend bad their decisions (ie how many Characters need a Task at the Brown House? We have an entire Springfield for Characters in an Event to play out, why the Brown House?) 😂

    Am I happy EA isn’t trying anymore? No, nor am I happy that FOX willingly interrupts the broadcast for weeks on end and doesn’t promote the Simpsons enough. 🤔

    IF this Event is a test by EA to see if Tappers either play thru, or spend sprinkles thru ….. then maybe EA should pay attention to the fact that more Tappers may decide not to log in (if they can) and play the Game App. Also, IF that’s EA testing to see if TSTO is coming to an end …. well, that’s on EA! 🤔

    We have inquired with each other regarding what Game Apps do you suggest to replace TSTO, and maybe we should continue to inquire amongst each other (this Game App will eventually come to an end, although it has lasted longer than most similar in format). 🤔

  11. I am honestly thinking about this event been the last one for me. The Game is not fun anymore, the sound bug is probably the deciding factor. If EA cannot Even be worried about fixing that, that certainly aren’t going to put any effort into making the game great again.
    Sad after nearly 7 years of it.

    • I’m having the same thought. It’s no longer interesting. I’m only interested in donut skipping everything. I don’t even read the dialogue because I want to exit the game as quickly as possible. Part of me wants to see this game end – you know just shut down – but this death March is longer than expected. I have better things to do than wait for a new event and then realize it sucks and skip through it.

      • Well…the difference between us, is that I want to read the dialogue, because it is the only good part of the event. I am weird about that stuff. I have a ritual of reading every comic in the morning paper (don’t ask me where) and then reading others over my morning breakfast from the Washington Post comics pages. I like funny stories and dialogue. It’s worth the investment of time for me, because it makes me smile, in a world where smiling is harder and harder to do.

        So…being able to “Binge Read” the Act, is like reading a short (very short) comic book. Worth the tapping. I usually do it on a morning when I don’t have much else going on. And then I just log in randomly to donut farm to be able to afford my “binging.”

    • Interesting note on the sound bug. I experienced the same thinking an IPad problem. Tried the game on my IPhone: sound is loud and clear.

  12. Rusty Shackleford

    Right now I’m binging on bourbon. This afternoon I found out that a good friend from college had passed away. He has had a lot of medical issues and so I am glad that his suffering is over. But he was with me when I met my wife…wow, time flies.

    But back to this event. I rushed everything too. I’ve got 4000 donuts farmed up so why wait?

    • Sorry for your loss, Rusty. We are at that age when the odds start to catch us. It’s why logging and tapping 4 times a day is a waste of Life Currency. Make the time count…right?

      • Rusty Shackleford

        Yes. My friend and I first met in graduate school and we were both teaching assistants in the Physics department. I’m thinking of doing something there to honor his memory.

        I’m only logging in twice a day during this event and then rushing things using farmed not wasting much time.

        Agh what a week…but there is more bourbon in the bottle…I’ll just have a little more..

    • Sorry for your loss Rusty 💔
      With age comes losing close friends and ❤️’d ones
      May you find peace this weekend

  13. Yeah. I’m struggling to stay on calendar track whilst trying to live a normal life. Just keep falling behind little by little. So I guess I’ll have to stay attached to my mobile devices, checking in AT LEAST every 4 hours or more, or just farm donuts then spend & speed the event tasks to earn everything before the event ends. Wow, this choice does not encourage me to stick around for enjoyment or entertainment. Grinding has always been a slough but doing so gave me an advantage & a small sense of accomplishment without spending actual cash. Now it seems the game demands that you grind &/or pay to finish events if you don’t want to devote your life checking into a GAME. Thanks for the post. Now I know I’m not imagining that the process & progress of this game has changed.

  14. Anyone else’s splash screen messed up? The one on my phone is fine but the one on my tablet has the car on top of Dr Hibbert.

  15. I’ve been wondering how long I’ll keep tapping. I really only tap the events, and I put all my prizes in my “extra land” area, thinking someday I’ll try to design it but never do. You hit the nail on the head. As for the splash screen, I read Alyssa’s post and wondered “What did Wookiee think was inappropriate about Sky Finger on the splash screen?” Now I know. I’ll never unsee that. 😉 <3

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