Tag Archives: simpsons tapped out

Friday Filler – Reality -vs- YOUR Reality In the XP and Real Worlds

Thank Grog It’s Firday!!

The entire debate about donut/vehicle farming comes at a really ironic point in my life. I am a little more than two months away from my 64th birthday. Yes. I am THAT old. Too young to get full Social Security, and still a year away from Medicare. But, one of my marketing clients, who is a financial planner, had me do a series of podcasts about “planning for retirement.” Man…did I learn a lot.

Mostly, I learned that I am NOWHERE NEAR being able to retire anytime soon. I won’t bore you with the multitude of reasons, but suffice it to say, that being self-employed for most of my life has been a roller coaster, and “pension” is a word that never really entered the equation. So…I will do everything I can now, to maximize my earning/saving potential (after I pay for two more weddings…), and hope that I live long enough to benefit from my work.

That’s kind of like the whole recent debate about XP Bonuses and Donut/Vehicle farming. The analogy is really a good one. The earlier you start, and the more disciplined you are, the better your “golden years” are going to be. Which of course is all relative, as none of us knows how long we will actually live, or how long TSTO will actually continue…rendering either argument or game plan completely moot!

That said…Here is my rough take on the best way to “Play Either Game.”
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In Defense of KEM and Vehicle Farming – Kinda…The Results and Conclusion

As promised, I have now completed a week of KEM farming, doing my best to follow Safi’s system…which you can find here.  

I begin, by once again stating that I have never really been a donut farmer of any sort, whether it be KEMs or Vehicles (Rat Trap Trucks/Bloodmobiles). I just never thought it was worth the grind, when you consider the value of the time spent.  As I have written about in the past, Life Currency (time) is more valuable than almost anything, especially at my advancing age. And even in my current state of semi-semi-semi retirement (I would retire if I could, and didn’t have another wedding to pay for in February…but still find enough time to golf and tap), I find that I need to affix SOME monetary value on time spent grinding…whether it is for Bonuts (bonus donuts) or the “incredible prizes” offered during the latest TSTO events. (spoken with tongue planted firmly in cheek).

I have to admit…I was surprised by the results. I was equally surprised by how the “new normal” has changed my view on what the term “grinding” means.

In the end…there is a recent change in the game, that may make Donut Farming a thing of the past…or at least not as attractive.
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News from the REAL Springfield…and the Day The Music Died

Let’s start with a Happy Labor Day to all of you in the United States. I only hope that you aren’t having to “Labor” today…and are enjoying the 3-Day Weekend, without Grinding for TSTO “bling” much!  Most of you should be waaaaay ahead of the calendar by now. So, tip back…enjoy your favorite beverage, and read a couple of stories from the REAL Springfield (well…one of them started here).

There is countless debate over where the Real Springfield is. But during a visit to Springfield, Oregon, to help celebrate the unveiling of a huge Simpson’s mural, the “Real Lisa Simpson” (at least the voice of the real Lisa Simpson) let it slip that indeed, Springfield, Oregon was the true Springfield. We never had a doubt…

But, apparently, more than just this revelation was hatched when Yeardly Smith visited here. Love…and a True Crime show were born…
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Let There Be LIGHT(s)!!!!

Wow. OK…so this has been the kind of week that makes one want to down a bottle of Dramamine in one sitting.  Politics on both sides of the “big pond” continue to make the ground shake with change and speculation.

But, even more important than who leaked to whom, and who will take charge of what, is WHY CAN’T I GET EVERYTHING I WANT!!!!!!

EA has really pulled the window to a narrow split for many of us who were unable to log on every 4 hours for weeks. Turns out that sometimes life gets in the way…and when I made the calendar, I thought, “this look EAsy!”  But…of course…they changed things in the middle of the update, because it seemed too easy for some. Bastids!

Now…I will likely be forced to make the decision whether I want to drop donuts on “Moe’s Cave” and caveman character (Another Moe???)…or if I am just going to go with my gut, and realize that creating a huge Cave/Springfield, which will be followed by an Egyptian Springfield makes no sense.  I WANT the pirate stuff. I’ve always wanted to be a pirate in my heart of hearts.  But, we’ll have to see how difficult they make it to get it all.

I also admit that “getting it all” makes me feel a bit greedy…when so many have so little (like the players who missed 2-3 years of free stuff!).  And when I take a look at what’s REALLY IMPORTANT…
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Animator is Working Overtime for This Event…Thanks!!


I know…I was whining about the length of these events in my last update. I don’t mean to look a gift “spy-gadget” in the mouth (in fact, it’s NEVER advised to look a spy gadget in the mouth, gift or no gift), but, I rEAlly (sorry, can’t help myself now…) want to make it clear that for the most part, I am really (see, I’m trying…) enjoying this update.

It’s not that the dialogue has been great, or that I think that a tidbit of story-line followed by weeks for grinding is the kind of event that EA should just keep doing forever.  But, what IS really making me laugh, is the amazingly creative animation that comes with even the smallest Freemium items won in this event. They are clever, hilarious, and continue to make me laugh every time I poke one of them.

Coming from the world of “Claymation,” I appreciate it when someone takes the time to add weird little details, and lot of imagination. Will Vinton’s crew had this talent…and then Nick Park, of “Wallace and Gromit” fame took it to new levels of hilariously weird, inventive, insane gadget ideas.

We all know about “Q” who is Bond’s gadget builder. This update is like morphing “Q” and Nick Park together…into a landscape that would make even the stodgiest CIA spy at Langley smile.
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Secret Agent Simpsons- FINAL ACT CALENDAR (Finally)


I know, I know…I’m supposed to be a “Kinder, Gentler, Less-Cranky-OldGuy.”  But, HOLYFREAKINSHIRT these events are loooooooooong… tooooooooo looooooooong!

See what I did there?  I just held down the “O” key and let the computer do the work of filling up space. Kind of like the EA programmers did for this last Act…which literally had almost the same prizes…falling on the same days…with minor alterations.  Talk about EALPish behavior!

But…if I am really honest, I have to give a salute (and not the one-finger kind) to the programmer/animator who is making all of these “Spy-worthy” decorations.  I think the characters are kinda, “meh”…but the buildings and decorations simply crack me up. I actually Laugh Out Loud at some of them. They are clever, well designed, and because they are clustered in my “Homage to Langley” section of my Springfield…I can tap a bunch of them and watch them all go nuts. It is hilarious.

So….yes….this last act is even EAsier (sorry…now that someone complained, I’m gonna do it forever), and everyone should get everything by simply logging in 3-4 times a day.

Here are the Calendars…
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Where Did THAT Come From? – Mr. Sparkle

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Because of his burgeoning school schedule, Wookster asked me to take a whirl at a “Where Did That Come From?” on Mr. Sparkle (aka Misutā Supākoru if you want the Japanese version).

I have to admit, that as I was just coming back from a 3-day trade show in Seattle, and was suffering serious “screen eyes” from trying to play the game, while working, shooting video, and doing “business meetings” with potential clients that went in the wee hours.  So, I was tempted to make the answer really concise…and just say, “Japan.” 

But, as there seems to be no end of the excitement for this odd, yet beloved sub-character in our games, I will do my best to get “deeper” into the origins of our favorite Japanese advertising mascot, “Mr. Sparkle” (with a huge assist from the crib notes that Wookie sent with his email request).

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When A Couch Gag Isn’t Just a Couch Gag

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What has become increasingly evident over more than 600 episodes, is that the “Couch Gag” has often taken on a status that can actually outshine the rest of the episode.  Like Saturday Night Live, the opening segment is often the best part of the show. There have been loads of “guest directors” for the couch gags, with some providing simply amazing sequences in their scope and creativity.

I won’t weigh in on whether this week’s couch gag (S28E14) outshines the rest of the episode (I’ll leave that for another time).  But, I WILL say, that I do like it when “The Simpsons,” which has clearly earned “revered old man” status in the pantheon of Prime Time animated shows, flexes a bit and takes the competition down a peg or two.

But, there is also an inside bit of humor that made me laugh. For Matt Groening, I suspect that part of this couch gag was a personal swipe at a family member.

Let’s see what you think…
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Around The World Event- Act I Calendar

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Ah…every great world traveler needs a calendar to help you plan your next stop, stay on track, and keep earning your Hotels.com rewards! I know…Deb and I did a 9,600 mile, 23 state, cross-country driving trip this past summer…in just 30 days.  Staying on track allowed us to meander and enjoy the trip. And THAT is the goal of having a calendar for these huge events!

And…like trying to cover that much territory in 30 days, sometimes the numbers can be daunting. I’m not going to lie…this one seems a bit tough to hit all of the road-markers to collect all of the primary prizes. But, I suspect there will be some surprises, daily rewards, and all sorts of ways that EA will EAse the anxiety!

Let’s Take A Look!

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Snow, Snow Go Away…Come Again Another Update…

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I love the snow. Let’s not forget this point, as you read the rest of this lament about snow.  I love the way our Springfield’s, and for that matter, our actual, real-life, towns look, when they are cloaked in a layer of beautiful, white, freshly fallen snow.

There is something magical about the quiet…the way snow insulates and dulls the sounds in the early morning when you first get up.  It is peaceful, beautiful, and often times rewards children (and teachers) with a “snow day,” to frolic, relax, and have fun.

In short…snow is wonderful!

Until it isn’t…
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