Lunch Freebie: Blocks & Lots

Today's free web game will have you testing your mettle as a city planner.

Article by Cassandra Khaw, .

Complain. Complain. Complain. Nobody ever seems satisfied to live and let live or to make a few compromises. What's a girl to do? Blocks & Lots is an educational game centered around 'land use, politics and urban development', and a test of your ability to keep everyone happy.

Blocks & Lots starts out simply enough. You're introduced to the residents of Solano Heights, the local zoning laws, and the multi-colored floor plan which represents the neighborhood. After that's done, you'll be asked to make one resident happy. Just one. The mechanics, much like the pastel-tinted presentation, are extremely rudimentary. Want to turn a quadrant of the map into a manufacturing zone? Click the bit on the top that says 'M-Manufacturing' before painting over the map. That's all you need to do. The difficulty quickly escalates, however. Eventually, you'd be told to do things like solve conflicts and ensure certain people are placated but not actually happy. Yeesh. Politics, I tell you.

Like a lot of people, I've felt some amount of frustration at city councils before. Why are there not enough parks? Why are there so many warehouses? What about that low-cost housing, hmm? Blocks & Lots is a reminder that there is often a much bigger picture we're oblivious to. Of course, there's always a chance that somebody out there just doesn't like how you look and is intent on making you miserable. Who knows?

Think you can build the most idyllic township ever? Check out Blocks & Lots and tell me if you succeed.

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