CityVille Downtown: Why pay when you can get in for free?

Earlier this week, Zynga dropped the price of entry to CityVille Downtown to 60 City Cash in one last-ditch effort to earn money from the masses before releasing the expansion for free. If you were able to control yourself and hold onto your City Cash, your patience has paid off, as you can now enter CityVille Downtown for absolutely nothing! That's right - the expansion (which might as well be called a second city) is now available to play for all users for free!

When you arrive in CityVille Downtown, you'll be taken through a short tutorial detailing the significance of Downtown Value. This can be thought of as a separate form of "population," as you'll need a specific number of Downtown Value points to expand your city, just as you need a certain number of citizens to do so. You'll start off with just a few squares in your Downtown expansion, but can expand by collecting Zoning Permits and raising your Downtown Value.

For instance, the first goal in Downtown: The Real Deal," introduces us to a new realtor character, and asks you to make your first expansion in your Downtown area:

  • Increase Downtown Value to 1905
  • Expand the Trucking Expansion Tile

To increase your Downtown Value, you'll want to click on the special Downtown logo within the market to build new items that have Downtown Value points to give. These are businesses like the Cheese Steak Counter or homes like a Modern Loft, Live Work Loft or Urban Apartments. Each item has a different Downtown Value, along with its specific stats like population, rent and more (depending on the item type, as usual).

As for the Trucking Expansion, this is found right next to your starting area of CityVille Downtown, so you'll only need to expand once to actually have it. Expanding requires you to earn some Zoning Permits from friends though, so keep that in mind. Once you've reached it, you'll be able to use this Trucking Depot to turn your regular Goods into Premium Goods which can then be used in your businesses. This includes the businesses that require these Premium Goods to run, like a Premium Purse Shop, Wine Bar, Italian Suit Store, Diamond Jeweler and much more.

One final feature to take note of is actually a contest available to those players who are ready to jump in and play in CityVille Downtown right away. A Downtown Central Park upgradeable item is found in the middle of your Downtown expansion, and like a Skyscraper, it comes with multiple levels that need to be completed and upgraded to in order to actually finish the item off. In this particular case, the Central Park serves as a Community Building, with there being seven levels to reach in all. Once you reach Level 7, you'll receive an increase in the allowance of Downtown Value by 15,000 points, and you'll also be entered to win up to 10,000 City Cash, as seen below. Just be fast about those upgrades, as the contest itself ends in ten days (the upgrades will be available after that, but the contest won't).

With that, you should be well on your way to success in your CityVille Downtown. Just keep in mind that any progress you make in Downtown (like adding new citizens) will carry over to your overall total. That being the case, if you'd like to expand your home town, you can use this Downtown as a storage area of sorts, for those new homes, and then expand your own town without purchasing new items and taking up space there! Pretty cool, right?

What do you think of CityVille Downtown thus far? Sound off in the comments.
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