Pocket Planes is the latest release from NimbleBit, and a great follow up to the renowned Tiny Tower, published by Mobage of course. It takes the same general concept of a creative and uncommon social management sim, but applies it to airport and flight management instead of skyscrapers. You can always count on NimbleBit to release management games that aren’t simple, derivative clones of other successful games, and they always do it with those charming pixel aesthetics too!
You start the game by choosing your own little corner of the world to start off. As you fly people and cargo around the region, you’ll earn a profit, and use that to unlock new airports and buy new planes, expanding your territory. This makes for a great sense of progression, as you have to zoom farther and farther out of the main map to see your airline empire at work. Most of the same features and window dressings of Tiny Tower are present. You’ll earn both coins and Bux, the special currency of the game. BitBook is still around, where imaginary Bitizens comment on your work. You can also customize the clothing of your pilots and their plane colors to some extent.
There really isn’t much more to be said. It’s mainly a different take on what we’ve seen before, with the same charming little bitizens and colorful pixel art. Like all of these games, once you finish assigning tasks there isn’t really much to do but wait. If you’re really bored though, you can watch planes fly to their destinations, collecting coins and even occasionally bux that fly by randomly. This game manages to keep the core of what made Tiny Tower great without cloning it, and it changes just enough to remain interesting, even to me, and I don’t like this genre much! Pocket Planes is available for free, and definitely worth a look.