Gil’s Latest Gimmick: Details and Should You Buy Secretary Van Houten?

Hey Howdy Hey Tappers!

Ol’ Gil is back in Springfield!  It’s just not an event until Gil gets involved!

Anyway, Gil is back and, as always, he’s got another “deal” for us.   What’s the latest gimmick he’s peddling? Well, this time around he’s taking a trip to Washington and bringing back Secretary Van Houten with him!

So let’s break down the details of this latest offer and determine if this deal is worth the donuts or if you should take a hard pass…

So when you first get into Springfield (well after you’ve launched the event stuff…of course) you’ll see Gil waving his arms around…just begging you to tap on him…

If you tap on him you’ll see…

Gil: Here’s the show-stopping chopper that’s gonna make ol’ Gil a sales chart-topper.  I’ve only got one, and it’s number one.  Marine One to be exact.
Secret Service Agent: It’s that guy we found sleeping under the Coolidge Gazebo in the Rose Garden.  Get him!
Gil: Hey, I can sleep on government property!  I pay my taxes!  Or I would if I ever had any income!
Secret Service Agent: *guns drawn* Step away from the Sky Finger.
Gil: Whattaya say?  Buy the whirlybird and keep Gil from being a jailbird?

At which point you’ll see his latest gimmick…

If you refuse…

Gil: You’re gonna veto the sale, huh? Ol’ Gil better use my connections to stay out of stir. Do you Secret Service guys know the Man with the Football? I sold him his first briefcase handcuffs…

If you accept…

Gil: Hail to the Chief! Ol’ Gil’s doin’ the West Wing Ring-a-Ding-Ding! Mind if I spend a few nights int he back seat before the commission comes in?

Now real quick…if you refuse the offer will go back in the store.  It will be there…

This Deal Ends September 8th

And now for the part, you’ve all been waiting for…the Should I Buy…

Character:  Secretary Van Houten
Decoration: Marine One
Donut Cost: 199 Donuts
Size: 4×8
Earns: 4.25% Bonus on all cash and XP
Vanity +200
Can Be Placed: grass|pavement|boardwalk|pier|dirt
WDTCF: “Bart to the Future” S11, E17

This Deal Ends September 8th

The Rundown:
-Comes with a questline
-Fun animated tasks.
-Will NOT help with the event. (ie does not earn event currency)
-Not voiced
-Has tasks on Marine One

What Did I D0?:
I picked it up.  Sure he doesn’t help with event currency, but, as long time readers know, the future episodes are some of my favorite episodes of The Simpsons.  So of course I had to complete the Bart to the Future Collection and grab Secretay Van Houten!

Here’s a look at the tasks…

Secretary Van Houten’s Permanent Tasks:

Task Length Earns Location
Hang Up Pictures of Lisa 1hr $105, 26xp Marine One
Loose His Papers 4hrs $260, 70xp Outside/Visual
Twirl His Sign 8hrs $420, 105 Outside/Visual
Trim the Budget 12hrs $600, 150xp US Capitol Building/Town Hall/Brown House
Power Nap 24hrs $1,000, 225xp Marine One/Brown House

And here’s the Turbo Tappin’ Version of the questline…

Damage Control Pt. 1
Secretary Van Houten

Make Secretary Van Houten Prepare Lisa’s Speech- 4hrs
Make President Lisa Prepare for Her Speech- 4hrs

Damage Control Pt. 2
Secretary Van Houten

Make Secretary Van Houten Listen to the Proposition- 4hrs

Damage Control Pt. 3
Secretary Van Houten

Make Secretary Van Houten Wallow in Shame- 4hrs
Make President Lisa Be Embarrassed- 4hrs

Damage Control Pt. 4
Secretary Van Houten

Make Secretary Van Houten Twirl His Sign- 8hrs

Damage Control Pt. 5
Secretary Van Houten

Make Secretary Van Houten Listen to His Boombox- 4hrs

What are your thoughts on Secretary Van Houten and Marine One?  Will you be spending the donuts to bring it to your Springfield? Did you already?  Why or why not?   Sound off in the comments below, you know we love hearing from you!

And finally, because I know a lot of you like to know these things…

12 responses to “Gil’s Latest Gimmick: Details and Should You Buy Secretary Van Houten?

  1. David Billington

    I’ve got my donut count up to over 10,000 through farming, and to be fair of my total goes below 10k I just have a couple of farm days when no event is running, so I no longer worry about the cost of an item. My xp isn’t crazy high or anything I just plow currency into it but the amount of currency I have is so high I don’t even tap my buildings every day. I still haven’t got everything in the game as I’m more worried about having issues with the item limit.

  2. I got it as I simply don’t refuse new characters for the game. But I prefer the future Milhouse that was Homer’s boss at the power plant.

  3. Not for me, for 200 donuts I can get 4 hot tubs in the vault for 10% bonus, so 200 for a new decoration, a character with no voice, that adds nothing to the event, and gives just 4.25% bonus … nah, if he pops up in the year book I’ll drop 30 donuts on him without thinking but for now, it’s a no from me.

    Thanks for the heads-up, as always really appreciated.

    • Interesting view. I set up a strategy that I followed to build up my Springfield. It really depends on where you currently are with bonus percentages.

      For a while I concentrated on upping my percentage, once I got to a certain point, I concentrated on getting the limited time characters. There is no guarantee on when or if they will come back. There are many characters that just have not been available in years, so keep that in mind. At some point (for me it was when I was earning enough donuts without doing too much farming) I switched to concentrating on the characters.

      Finally, the method you speak of getting bonus percentage is not the most efficient. I look at the ratio of how many donuts you need to spend to get an increase of 1% in bonus percentage.

      The object you listed costs 20 donuts to go up 1% there is a four wheel bike that runs at 10 donuts for 1%, it’s available in the vault, but might take a while to come around.

      I found the best return was the Monty Burns mystery box, either the billboard or the channel 6 news van. Factoring that you already have each of the unique items, chance of winning 10 or 30 donuts, the long term expected cost is slightly less than 7 donuts per 1% bonus percent. Of course short term returns could be more or less than this.

      If you look up articles on this, the comments are that the notes from EA are complex and hard to follow. I have not seen those notes, so I can neither confirm, nor deny this.

      As an actual actuary, I am pretty good with probabilities, I took a guess on what I would expect it to be. I have also supplemented this with imperial (observed) evidence. Running this over a large number of trials (central limit theorem for those that are technical) the return rate is consistent with the figure I provided above.

      Now for the rub, you will end up with lots and lots of those Van’s and billboards, which is not always attractive. You can hide some behind tall buildings, but there is a practical limit to this.

      • This. If I may, my preferred XP item is the miniature nuclear warhead. 2.25% bonus, 35 donuts after discount, 1×3 size. Very hideable behind even tiny buildings.

        • I like those too, but I try to limit those to the ones you earn from the rocket ship, and Lisa’s 12 hour task on the eliminator (rommelwood academy event)

        • My favorite items for XP is the snake log and the snake trunk, both from whacking day events. They are tiny, have XP and an income. Alas, they haven’t been available for some time. The last time they were available they limited you to one. I am keeping my eyes open for them. If I see them I will get as many as I can.

      • Completely agree with all that, although the hot tubs were an example not a strategy. I too use the Burns Mystery Box (jebus I hate -ondas) but for me it’s still a no. For my own personal R.O.D. [Return on donuts] it just doesn’t add up, maybe if I’d joined the game earlier and had the airport, but I’ve enough homeless aircraft as it is without spending donuts on another. Each to their own.

        Thanks for the reply, though.

    • But 4 hot tubs provide nearly no enjoyment. Oh well, to each their own.

  4. Secretary Van Houten w/Marine One 🚁 is a deal (if you are low on 🍩’s, I will understand if you choose to wait and see if this Character Combo shows up in a Mystery Box – but you are missing out on a great Questline involving future President Lisa Simpson!) 👍🏻

    That Bonus % is nice
    His Visual Character Tasks are amusing
    2 Character Tasks take place on Marine One 🚁
    (199 sprinkles on a Gil Deal isn’t bad!)

    This was a score for me! 😊

Leave a Reply