You’re Play­ing It Wrong

In this tale of de­prav­ity, The Simpsons: Tapped Out be­comes a gate­way to a far darker ad­dic­tion


The be­gin­ning was so in­no­cent. Idly brows­ing free iOS games, I stum­bled across The Simpsons: Tapped Out. I’m not what you would call the pro­to­typ­i­cal hard­core gamer, but af­ter steadily gam­ing since a NES landed un­der my Christ­mas tree in 1988, I’m far from ca­sual, so the hys­te­ria for so­cial games where you click on things had largely passed me by. I was ca­sual-cu­ri­ous. The Simpsons li­cence was tempt­ing and so­cially ac­cept­able, and I scoffed at the no­tion of ever be­ing lured through a free-to-play por­tal into pay­ing real money for vir­tual ex­tras. Then I clicked on Down­load.

Lit­tle did I know I was in­sti­gat­ing a process that would re­sult, with dis­ori­ent­ing speed, in

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