Ever check in somewhere and think “I wish I owned this place? It’s always busy!”? Now you can — virtually, at least — with Landlord, a new property buying and selling game for iOS that’s based on real-life foursquare venues.
In Landlord, you have the option to purchase the places you visit (or those that are very close by) as if they were properties on a Monopoly board, encouraging you to get out and explore your world to find the most “profitable” spots. Anytime another foursquare user checks in there, you earn rent, but you have to be careful to make sure you’re earning more in rent than the “daily charge” you’ll be hit with for maintaining the property.
Each property can be upgraded to collect more rent. Instead of the houses and hotels of Monopoly, though, you upgrade with all sorts of real-world bonuses, like free WiFi, a chef’s table or cooking classes. The different options are unlocked as you gain more experience in the game and bought with coins you earn in the game or purchase in the app.
“It’s bound to be a big hit with city traders and the like, because of the real world financial elements to it and the competitive element of beating their mates,” said founder James Shrager in a press release. “Unlike other games, which so often see the user sat at a screen for hours on end, Landlord encourages gamers to get out and about. It’s definitely going to make Foursquare even more fun.”
Shrager isn’t the first to tackle the mashup of foursquare and property trading. Both Fourocity and Metropoli (one of our most popular posts of all time) have attempted it. Metropoli never got off the drawing board, while Fourocity was done in by early adopters who scooped up all the most popular venues and just continued to get richer, leaving new players little hope of advancing up the leaderboard (just like real Monopoly).
Luckily the creators of Landlord already have a few features that work to tackle this issue and are working on more ideas that will encourage players to trade properties around. Incredibly busy properties, for instance, are very expensive (and come with a hefty daily charge) so people won’t be able to stockpile a lot of them at once.
The Landlord app is incredibly “sticky,” with beta testers reporting that they often open it for a “quick hit” numerous times a day. After just a few hours playing with it, it’s easy to see why. Earning money — even virtual money — is exciting and the faster you earn it, the faster you can make your next, bigger investment.
Landlord is available for free in the iOS app store (an Android version is in the works). Give it a try and let us know what you think in the comments.