Zynga upgrades CityVille Franchises, but did it miss the point?
Franchises in CityVille have been in desparate need for a change for some time. In fact, Zynga has hinted that an upgrade to the feature was on the way, and now it's finally here. While the fundamentals of Franchises have not changed, the method through which we can create them and share them has. However, this still doesn't solve the major problem with Franchises: The fundamental fact that there is a large portion of players that franchised early, fruitless Businesses that are now nigh impossible to get rid of through the game. Players have to still contact neighbors directly and ask them to remove their low-level franchised Businesses in favor of high-level, profitable Businesses. But let's start with what has changed.
Players no longer need to create lots in preparation for players that might request a Franchise. When visiting a friend's city, a new icon appears above the five available tasks that looks like an empty Franchise lot. Click this icon to directly request that a Franchise be built in this friend's city. A menu will appear with your Businesses beneath it--choose one and send the request to your friend. Again, Empty Lots are no longer needed initially, but will be created and placed if a friend accepts a Franchise request.
Now, if you enter your city and a friend has requested to build a Franchised Business in your city, a similar icon will appear on your screen to the one when visiting friends. Click on that icon to instantly be put into Place Mode, which replaces your cursor with a Franchise lot. Place it in an appropriate area--near lots of decorations, preferably--and just like that your friend has launched a Franchise in your city. While this is certainly helpful, nothing else has changed, really.
Most notably, there still is no way to delete useless or less profitable Franchises from friends' cities within the game. Players still have to ask neighbors directly via Facebook (a phone call or text is nice if you're close with the friend) to remove the Franchised Business manually in favor of a more profitable one. Until this changes, Franchises will be fundamentally flawed.
I own Franchises for the Bakery Business and Toy Store Business. Granted, expensive Businesses have higher Good capacities and likely cost more to maintain, they will always be more profitable than Bakeries and Toy Stores. Sure, those with useless Franchises could simply forget about them and request to build new, more profitable Businesses through the new system. But that still doesn't solve the issue of wasted space in friends' cities. It could take a long time before players become privy to the fact that they're supplying Franchised Businesses whose owners no longer even collect on. And we shouldn't have to message our Facebook friends individually to remedy that.
Perhaps Zynga could add a functionality to the Visitor's Center that would players to announce that they've "closed" Franchises and moved on to bigger and better Businesses. Though, that would require players to actually check the Center, which is unreliable. How about adding a big old "Delete" button to each Franchise Headquarters menu? No, not the one that sends the actual building to the inventory, but one that deletes both the HQ permanently and sends an ultimatum to friends who run these Franchised Businesses. The message would read something to the effect of, "Joe has closed his "Joe's Java House" Franchise and will no longer supply it. Would you like to remove this Business to create space for his next Franchise?" So, it's a little cold, but that's business. Is that not what CityVille is all about?
[Source and Image Credit: CityVille Forums]
What do you think of the Franchises update? Does this fix the Franchise issues for you or do you agree that it needs more work? Share with us in the comments. Add Comment.