Just the other day, I was thinking to myself, “With all these simulators around, what job is not represented enough in gaming?” And I came to the most obvious, Meter Maid. You know, the person who rides around in a sweet 3 wheeler, giving out tickets to those who aren’t clever enough to put in enough coins into the meter. I know there was that show, Parking Wars, which caught the essence of the job but I haven’t been able to find a way to actually live this exciting life myself. Now, thanks to Meter Maid City for the iOS, I can fulfill all of my parking ticket needs from the safety of my own iPhone.
Let me tell you, this game has it all when it comes to giving out parking tickets. First, you can plan your own routes through the city which is essential if you want to be a self starter in that industry. With some blocks full of 30 minute parking spaces you have to come around a few times, while the spaces that use the old fashioned coin meters can be visited less often. Luckily, planning my own route was just the first step to success. I got myself some parking tickets, some tow slips (for those people who HAVE to park in a handicapped spot while they’re obviously quite capable), a few timing strips (for the 15 and 30 minute parking spots), and some boots for serial parking offenders. And off I went! The little meter maid mobile (technical term) moves along at a steady clip, I can easily touch and drag the parking tickets onto the cars who are obviously taking too long. I drop off timing tickets onto the 15/30 minute spots so I can see if they’ve been parked there longer than is allowed. I bribed hobos to tell me where the worst serial parking offenders are and booted them so they can’t run. It was a great run through the city. Earned a few thousand dollars for the city’s coffers and upgraded my meter mobile.
But then I did it again, and again, and again. Its a free game, I know, so there is some amount of repetitive action to be expected. But I can only give out so many tickets before I get sick of it! A few thousand dollars here and there on a run is great, but when a new block costs 20 grand and an upgraded block (apparently meter maids get to choose where their money goes) costs upwards of 40k, its gonna be a lot of parking tickets before I can truly deck out my city. And it is fun for a while, but I can’t keep doing this day after day. Sure I can increase the speed at which my little car moves and spend the time dodging traffic for a little bit more cash per ticket, but in the end it is too little. Too little money per ticket, too few tickets per ride, and far too many rides before any tangible benefits. I guess I could spend a few real dollars here and there and upgrade my experience, but thats not what I look for in the games that I play. I want to get in, play for a bit, and have an upgrade waiting for me. I want to try out some of the more advanced tactics in parking ticket management, such as using an EMP device to stop cars from driving away before their meter expires. But how many patrols or shifts can I really go on before I get to that point? In Meter Maid City, that answer is far too many.