Booyah’s MyTown: Location-Based Gaming Meets Monopoly

MyTownBack when iPhone developer Booyah released its first title, Booyah Society, most of the buzz was about the creators behind it. With a number of the team coming from strong backgrounds such as Blizzard Entertainment, there were high expectations for the game that allowed players to “level up in life.” Unfortunately, it looks as if the game is no longer in the AppStore, as the company kicks off a new rendition: MyTown.

The game keeps some of the old features of Societies; namely the robotic-looking avatars. Users can interact with them by tapping the screen, earn items and clothing, and post updates via Twitter or Facebook. What is different, however, is that the game has gone the route of location-based game/social networks such as FourSquare and Gowalla. As a reminder, those are games that have users “checking in” from real locations around their town to earn points.

Buy PropertyWhile lack of users in an area may still be an issue for MyTown, there does seem to be more initial rewards as well as places that are all ready tagged. Here’s how it works. Players log in, from wherever they are, and check in. A list of locations will appear, and after selecting one, a player checks in again and not only earns cash, power-ups, and wearable gear, but also has the option to purchase the location.

This is where the game starts to feel like a real-life Monopoly. Purchasing an area allows the player to earn rent, which is, perhaps, the most interesting feature. You see, each location has a set value. As other users check in at that location, you get virtual rent money. So, the more of your town you own, the more you earn.

As players check in to locations, they will also earn points towards new levels. This, in turn, allows them to upgrade any location that they currently own, thus increasing rent values (like making hotels in Monopoly).

National SocietyOn the social end too, beyond Facebook status updates and tweets, users can view the entire national society and see comments from around the country. A personal favorite is a user named Shawn who is apparently stuck at Target, up in Michigan, “still drinking.”

Frankly, the only significant complaint is that the game seems to be fairly easy to level up. In the span it took to write up this review, “check-in,” for the only nearby location, has been pressed over a couple dozen times, and a great deal of coin and power-ups have been earned. Nevertheless, it does seem like a pretty fun game, and certainly a nice time killer if you are traveling. Sure, there are some dents to hammer out, but overall, MyTown does feel more solid than Booyah Society. We look forward to seeing this title evolve and grow.