Hey, Happy Memorial Day to my fellow American readers out there and happy Monday to all of my other readers as well.
Today being a day off, I thought I’d do something a little different for this post; something a bit more fun than just postcards. I want to share with you something that I like to do in my free time (what little I have) besides just reading or making postcard art.
If you have been reading the blog for a while, you’ll note that I have stated more than once that I am not a gamer by any means. I don’t play video games. When I was younger, I made an effort to try, but failed miserably. Oh, the many times I made my game character die by falling into an abyss in the ground… My brother on the other hand is like a game expert and seems as though he can master pretty much any game that he picks up. We may be brothers but the differences between us is light years apart; the games thing being one of them.
So in short, I don’t play games. HOWEVER… there is one game that I’ve really come to love over the past few years and it doesn’t involve having to jump on mushrooms or shooting down spaceships. It’s called Fortune Street Smart and is probably one of the best games that I have ever played.
If you are familiar with Monopoly, then you will love Fortune Street. It’s basically the same concept, but with more depth to it to really make it fun. For starters, you can play on different boards (in-game app purchase) that each have their own challenges and elements that make them stand out from one another. Some are really basic, like in Monopoly, where you go around in a “circle fashion”, while others have two or three “floors” or levels” that you have to go through in order to win. And some boards are based off of places in the world. For example, there’s a board that you can play that’s based in Antarctica. There’s one that’s based in Asia, which I have a screenshot that I took for you to see below.
You can probably make out at least two distinct countries here; India and Japan. There’s a board that’s dedicated to just Japan. And there is even one that’s based on the Solar System, which is pretty awesome.
So that’s one big difference that separates this game from Monopoly. Another is the mode of play. Unlike Monopoly where you basically have to bankrupt everyone on the board, in Fortune Street, the main idea is to collect the four suits (by passing over or landing on their respective spaces) and making it back to the Bank Space (see above) to collect your salary and gain more money until you reach your target amount (set at the beginning of the game). The Bank Space is sort of like the “GO” space in Monopoly, except that you get more than $200 and the amount increases the longer that you play the game in a single round.
But bankruptcy can and does occur in Fortune Street. If a player’s Net Worth reaches 0 or lower, they must sell all of their acquired shops and stocks (if you’re playing in “stocks mode”) and is out of the game. Their shops are then auctioned off to the highest bidder who wants and can afford them. You automatically win if your opponents all go bankrupt, regardless if your Net Worth has reached its target amount. I usually set my target amount at $40,000, which makes a round pretty long, but it allows you to build up your shops easier.
Next, let’s talk about the shops and spaces for each board. Like in Monopoly, you can purchase property, or shops, through buying and trading with the other players. And like the famous board game that we all know, you can increase the max capital of your property so that if someone lands on it, they have to pay up. And let me tell you, the max capital for any given shop can increase exponentially if played correctly. I once increase one of my shops to over $27,000! You can see for yourself below from one of my games that I played. Check out the far right yellow building!
The shops are separated by “districts” so if you own all the shops within a district, the max capital for your shops increases and you can do some major damage to your opponents’ pocket books. I have to tell you that it’s so fun to milk these guys for all they’re worth and watch them cry, ha!
There are other spaces on the board that can either help or hinder your progress. I won’t go into all of them, but here are a few:
“?” Space- Allows you to draw a chance card, which can help or hurt you. Very similar to the chance/community chest spaces in Monopoly. Each number has a different effect. (Hint: 77 is one of the best to draw while 13 is probably the worst).
Boon Space (the Star Space)- This is pretty handy. You get 20% commission every time someone else has to pay for one turn. For example, if someone lands on a space that’s worth $400 and has to pay, you will get $80. Nice!
Take-a-Break Space (the Moon Space)- I hate this space. If you land here, all of your shops are shut down for one turn and you don’t make any money if someone lands on your shop. Think of it like that annoying “Go to Jail” space in Monopoly.
Casino Space- As the name suggests, you can play a game of chance to try and increase your net worth. The games are annoyingly difficult and you have more of a chance of losing than winning. Plus, the payoff usually isn’t that great so it’s not a very useful space, especially later in the game when your money is really high.
Those are some of the basic spaces that you see on each board. You can also create your own spaces if you set the game up to have “open plots” at the beginning. I won’t get into all of that, but it’s pretty cool. You can build shops like tax offices, toll booths (what I mostly do), zoos, etc., and they all do different things to help increase your money flow.
So that’s the basic game play for Fortune Street. Pretty fun! And get this. That’s not even the best part of the game. What really makes this game so fun (at least for me), are the characters themselves and the things that they say. The game is pretty interactive and the characters will react differently, depending on what you do, and they have a wide range of emotions that they express. Some of the things they say are pretty hilarious and what makes Fortune Street one heck of a fun game. Check out some of my screen shots of the characters’ reactions.
I think I like Melanie’s expressions the best. She really gets into it! These are just a few of the characters that I was able to get screen shots of while playing. There are many others. Some you have to “purchase”, some you win by winning a certain number of times in the game and some the game just gives to you. Aya is one of the most difficult to get and she is extremely difficult to beat. Some characters are kind of annoying, like MOCO, the baby in the flying spaceship. But these characters are what make the game fun. And like I said before, this is probably the only game that I play on my iPod. It’s great to pick up while waiting in the doctor or dentist’s office and don’t want to read (because you’re too nervous to read, like me), or while on a break at work and don’t have time to really read anything. Of if you’re like me, it’s nice to pick up and play on a day off and just want to waste an hour (or two) trying to build the most expensive shop possible and make your opponents angry (as you saw above!) if they have to cough up 20 grand. I highly recommend it to anyone, but especially those who love math and numbers. It’s perfect for both kids and adults!
Hope you enjoyed this post. It took a really long time to write out but was really fun to do. Every so often, I like sharing the things that I like to do, besides reading and postcard making. Guess it goes to prove that I’m more of a nerd than I thought!