Roller coaster and theme park enthusiasts have some options when it comes to building the parks of their dreams on mobile. RollerCaster Tycoon Classic is a pretty faithful recreation of the first two PC games, complete (for better or worse) with decidedly old school graphics. For a more updated spin, Atari has also released RollerCoaster Tycoon Touch, designed to marry some of the original gameplay with modern systems.
It succeeds for the most part, at least in the sense that you feel like you are building an amusement park and catering to the guests’ desires while watching the bottom line. The graphics got a big kick in the pants, and there’s no question that it is very much “of the moment” in the way that it manages your time and gameplay sessions.
You can be the judge when it comes to the merits of those changes. What we’re here to do is provide some RollerCoaster Tycoon Touch Tips, Cheats and Strategies to help maximize your park-building acumen and make the cryogenically preserved body of Walt Disney blue with envy at your vision (blue instead of green since he’s frozen). Let’s get our tycoon on.
Bigger is Better
Where the original RollerCoaster Tycoon games generally presented you with scenarios that tested your ability to fulfill certain objectives in a specific amount of time, Touch has no such time constraints. Your goal is simply to have the most impressive park possible, zoning regulations be damned, we assume.
That doesn’t mean you can just build willy-nilly. Just like its predecessors left you at the mercy of your research department when it came to what rides or attractions you could construct next, the gods of randomness are present in the form of card packs. Each time you open a pack, you’ll either get a new card, opening up that item for construction, or cards for rides, stores and scenery you already have. Obtain enough duplicates and you can level up that attraction, increasing its usefulness to your park.
BONUS TIP: You can often build several of the same ride or store if desired. Look at the number on the left-hand side of any card and you’ll see how many copies of that structure you currently have in your park and the maximum number allowed — which can be increased at times by leveling up the card.
The park visitors, or Peeps, can also help guide you in the right direction when it comes to what to build next. If you tap on the smiley (hopefully) icon at the top of the main game screen, you’ll get a graph of the Peeps’ average satisfaction that has three bars: Fun, Food and Hygiene. While everything you build affects these scores in some way, a general way to look at them can be expressed pretty simply:
- If your Fun is low, build more rides.
- If your Food is low, build more restaurants.
- If your Hygiene is low, build more bathrooms — and if you’re maxed out on those, you might want to consider leveling up cards specifically to lower their Nausea ratings since that helps keep Hygiene high.
BONUS TIP: While you’re going big, you’re eventually going to run out of space. Starting at level 10, you can purchase park expansions off on the perimeters of your land just by tapping on them and paying the (fairly significant) amount of coins. A new expansion will open up for you every few levels.
Coins are Key
There’s no overstating how important coins are to RollerCoaster Tycoon Touch. Literally everything you want to do requires coins, and you don’t earn them all that quickly in the early stages of the game.
To build a new ride or attraction or lay down a new piece of scenery, you need not only the proper card but also the required number of coins. The same is true when you’re looking to upgrade anything. You’re going to run out of coins and find yourself unable to do anything at times. It’s just the reality of life as a tycoon.
There are some ways you can earn coins faster. Everything in the park, from the front gate to the shops (not bathrooms, though if memory serves you could charge guests to use them in the original RollerCoaster Tycoon games) has an adjustable ticket price for the Peeps. Just tap on an attraction and then tap on the price tag icon and you can use the slider to set the current price. Pay heed to the feedback about whether peeps find it to be too expensive. A good rule of thumb is to set it as high as possible while still falling in the ‘Good Value’ range.
Since this is a free-to-play game, you can also buy coins. Just tap on your coin balance at the top of the screen and you’ll see your options, and as with most F2P titles, it’s probably a smart move to wait for a special offer if you’re going to take the paid plunge.
BONUS TIP: Real life logic applies to what Peeps are willing to pay just to set foot in your theme park masterpiece. As you add more attractions, you’ll find that the Park Entrance price can be adjusted upward without it having a negative effect on guests’ attitudes — and you definitely should whenever possible.
Save Your Tickets
Tickets are the premium currency in RollerCoaster Tycoon Touch, and as such, are pretty valuable. You won’t earn them as often or in the same quantities as coins, and they should be carefully stockpiled as a result.
At launch, tickets can be used right away for two purposes: completing missions instantly and buying more packs of cards. The first use is really only something to consider if you desperately need experience points to level up or coins in a hurry, depending on the mission reward in question. More often, you should be saving your tickets for card packs.
Spending 10 tickets on a Folder of Cards is tempting since you can earn that many tickets quickly by turning in missions or knocking out achievements. It’s just that the Binder of Cards is a better value: 38 cards for 35 tickets. That’s the way to go whenever possible.
One extra way to earn tickets is by tapping on the ‘Offers’ button in the store and checking out what Tapjoy has in store. You’ve probably encountered Tapjoy while playing other mobile games, but just in case, it often asks you to spend money on products or services to get some in-game currency in return, so be forewarned.
BONUS TIP: After you’ve played for a while, you’ll unlock the ability to promote your park, driving in more Peeps using the bullhorn icon in the bottom-right corner. For 25 tickets, you can get a 15 percent attendance boost for 12 hours, which isn’t that bad. However, you can also get a 5 percent boost for three hours simply by watching a video. That seems like the better play in most circumstances.
Design Your Own Thrills
One of the cooler features of RollerCoaster Tycoon Touch, even in a relatively limited form, is the ability to design your own roller coasters. It’s not quite as intuitive as constructing and placing everything else in your park, but it does offer you an impressive amount of control given the overall simplicity of the game.
To build a coaster, you’ll first need one of all four kinds of basic cards: station, train, tracks and chain lift. There are seven types of coasters in all, each with their own additional feature cards, but they all share the four basics.
Construction begins by placing the station and making sure you have plenty of room to lay out the track. You can manage the elevation of different parts of the track so that it goes over existing attractions, but until you get the hang of it, the easiest thing to do is to build near the back of your land or in a freshly opened expansion.
Inside the build menu, you lay out track by simply dragging out your finger from the station or the last node. At each node, you have the following options:
- Slide the track around on the X and Y axes.
- Change the elevation of the track, moving it up or down.
- Tilting the track left or right, as you would to bank the turns.
Any or all of those options can be performed at each node. Then you simply build out to the next one. If applicable, you can also tap the ‘Add Special’ icon to throw in a loop, spiral or other fancy track section, though there might be some prerequisites to doing so. For example, you can’t add the ‘Wooden Helix Down’ special card to the wooden coaster unless your track is already high enough off the ground at that node to accommodate it.
Special elements are great for raising the Intensity and Excitement ratings of a coaster, so don’t hesitate to use them when possible. Also, keep in mind that each basic and special card in a coaster can be leveled up separately, giving you some options on how to boost its performance and desirability to the Peeps.
BONUS TIP: Want to build a longer coaster with more nodes and elements? You’ll want to level up the tracks card, as that will give you a length bonus and allow you to add more.