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If you have not already read the 'How It Works' section please do so now.

This is our illustrated guide and picks up where the How It Works section leaves off and goes into a Step By Step detail on how to actually play the game. 

Two Gaming Options :  Real Money Vs. Play Money

The first thing to understand is that we have two versions of the game.  First there is the PLAY MONEY version.  This version of the game is purely for fun, practice, and education.  You can play with virtual dollars that cannot be converted to real money and thus you have nothing to lose.  I recommend starting with the Play Money as you learn more about how everything works.  The other section is the REAL MONEY section.  This section requires you to deposit real money into a virtual account and allowing you to play with actual dollars.

Understanding The Game Board
The first thing you need to learn and understand is how the game board works.  This is where you review property to purchase.  Firsts, lets start with a screen shot of the game board.


#1:  Screen Shot of Real Estate Marketplace

You can locate the playing board within the Marketplace of each game.  The board is separate in the Play Money area and the Real Money area.  When you highlight your mouse over one of the properties on the map you will see a popup of information pertaining to the property.  If you do not see this popup then your web browser might not support the java script.  In this case simply use your mouse to CLICK on the property image and this will take you to the detailed property screen.  Let's do this now.

After clicking on a property you will see the property screen that looks similar to this screen shot below.


#2:  Screen Shot of Property View

This screen will give you many details about the property.  First thing you should look at is the CHART
 

Property Charts
The chart is going to give you a quick visual glance of how the property is performing.  This tells you the tenant count of the property which is the most important factor that influences the properties value.  Properties that are gaining tenants generally gain in value.  Property charts can quickly give you insight to what properties are HOT and which ones to avoid.

 

 

Quality Rating
Each property will also have a quality rating.  Generally speaking, properties of higher quality tend to recover from falling values quicker then those with a lower quality rating.  However, these properties are also hit hardest during bad times.

Important Property Information
This section will tell you who owns the property, the number of current tenants, its current market value, and it's Movement.
  Tenants - The number of tenants occupying the property have the most effect on its appraised price.  You should always beware properties that have a high price and low tenant count as they tend to rapidly drop in value in the upcoming turns.  The way we determine the probability if a property will increase or decrease in value is by its movement or trend.
  Movement - The appraisable value of the property is affected not only by the number of tenants but also by its trend or movement.  This is a variable that can be post positive or negative and reflects the properties 'popularity' among the people of Virtual City.

Properties with a positive movement will tend to attract new tenants while properties with a negative movement have a higher probability of losing tenants to other properties.

Properties with a neutral or zero movement are changing trends and can be risky yet lucrative purchases.  Properties with a low tenant count but a high movement can also be very lucrative purchases.

   

Upgrades & Improvements
Properties have Active and Inactive improvements made to them.  Active improvements appear in color on the bottom of the property view.  Inactive improvements are shown in black and white.

  Improvements tend to change the trend or movement of the property.  They can also affect the property value and its future performance so understanding improvements is very important.  If you purchase a property with a high movement value and numerous improvements made then you can expect the price to increase; however when these improvements expire you may end up with a slump in growth which can leave you holding the property longer then expected.  If you invest in improvements, and the trend continues to increase then you can make a great return on your investment for your risk taken.


 

Purchase Apartment
By pressing this button you will be given the opportunity to purchase the property.  You must be logged in with an active account to purchase property.

Now that you understand a little bit about the game board and how it works I want to take you through the signup process and show you how to manage your properties and account.  First let's start by Signing up.  Let me show you a screen shot of the signup page.


#3:  Signup Screen

After signing up and logging into your account you will see your Overview.  As we continue to make changes and updates your Overview page will change so yours might not look like the one below.

 You will notice a navigational menu at the top.  The sections include the following:
 

Overview
The overview will give you lots of important information about your holdings and account including the number of properties you own, your portfolio appraisable value, and your available virtual dollars.
 
Marketplace
This is the Real Estate Marketplace or 'Playing Board' if you will.  This is where you view all of the properties for sale and click on the properties your interested in.
 
My Portfolio Profile
Your portfolio specifies things such as your email address, nick name, and most importantly your Paypal Email Address that withdraws are honored to. 
 
My Apartments
This screen allows you to view all properties that you own and to analyze trends and changes.  You can also make improvements to the property and place your properties up for sale on this screen.
 
My Money
You can manage your balances, withdraws, and deposits here.  You can also view prior transaction history.
 
Logout
If you're using a public or work computer you will want to logout of your session when finished trading your property for the day to ensure your account stays secure.

My Apartment Section

Let's explore the My Apartments area within the Real Estate Investor control panel.  First, let's start with a screen shot.


#5:  My Apartment Section

Once you purchase a property you see the property available in your My Apartments section of the control panel.  Every property will list an informative sheet like the one above.  You will see a CHART, IMPROVEMENTS, APPRAISE VALUE, RATING, and MOVEMENT trend in the upper corner.  If the trend is BLUE and pointing UP, like the one above, then you know it has a positive trend and if it is GRAY and pointing DOWN  then you know your trend is negative.  This gives you a fast reference to the movement of the property.  You can also purchase UPGRADES to the property by clicking on the 'Purchase Upgrade' button on this screen.

In this example you will notice in the lower right hand corner it says "You are currently offering this apartment for sale".  When you purchase a new property you will automatically be allowed to 'hold' the property for 3 'TURNS'.  This will allow you time to make upgrades to the property is to hold the property for a small duration of time to reap the benefits of a strong upward movement in the market.  If you do not wish to hold the property and the property is not up for sale then you will notice that the following button will appear:

By clicking on this button it will automatically put the property up for sale and allow other players to purchase it.  The maximum amount of time you can hold a property off the market is 3 turns, however you can place the property back on the market at anytime for a fast profit.

Upgrading & Improving Property

If you click on the "Purchase Upgrades" button you will be taken to a screen that offers a series of upgrades you can make on your property.  Each upgrade has its own unique advantages for achieving different desired effects.

Improvements do not last forever.  As the example above, this improvement only lasts for 3 rounds or 'turns'.  Improvements temporarily lift and change the movement of a property.  They can be used to quickly attract new tenants to a property and to greatly increase the value of the property.  The key to improvements is knowing when to improve a property and when not to improve one.   If you plan to quickly resell the property then it is not smart to make improvements into the property.  However, if you plan to hold the property part of the day, and you purchase the property at a great price with low tenants, then making improvements can make a lot of money.  If you purchase a property at a low price with a negative movement or trend then this can also turn the property around and make it very attractive to other players -- and making you a quick profit in the meantime.

Click on the Buy Now button to make the improvement to the property.  Improvements will not take effect until the next 'TURN' when tenants change properties.

Finance & Real Money Game Play

This is a very fun game -- but it's also a way to prove your dominance and put your money where your mouth is.  This is purely a skill based peer to peer system so you have an equal chance of making great investment decisions as any other player.  This being said -- the Real Money version of this game is played with...... real money!  If your not interested in playing for real money then we also have a free money mode as well just for fun! 

Making Deposits
To purchase property you will need to first signup and then make a deposit.  The game uses Virtual Dollars that you can use to buy and sell property.  Virtual dollars are exchangeable for US dollars via the site owner.  So how do you get virtual dollars?  You make a deposit of course!  Click on the "My Money" link in your control panel and again on the "Buy Virtual Dollars" link.  This will take you to the package page that will show you all currently available Virtual Dollar packages.  Buying a package will instantly place the virtual dollars in your account for use.

Requesting Withdraws
Withdrawing your earnings are very simple... and fast!  After you have purchased and sold numerous properties you can use the Withdraw option in the My Money section to request your Virtual Dollars be converted back into real money.  You will receive your earnings back in the same method you use to make the deposit.