Drop the XBOX One or PS4 controller you’re currently holding on a Friday morning and play a game about real estate. The Citizens Housing Planning Council just dropped the hottest game of the summer, called “Inside the Rent.” There are no head-shots, power ups or gold rings to collect , the object of the game is to educate you on the troubles and cost it takes to develop housing in NYC. It’s like Math Blaster for real estate nerds.
First, you choose your neighborhood, we choose Williamsburg. Then you are asked to set the rent for a two bedroom apartment, since everyone has to know someone paying too much to live in Williamsburg, you could ask, but it would be less fun that way. You then choose whether to make your building a mid-rise or high-rise (we choose high-rise, the bigger the better.) You’re then asked a series of questions relating to the construction: prevailing wages for construction, maintenance etc. When it’s all said and done, you can see whether your building’s rent is too high or too low. If it’s too low for example, you can ask for subsidies for the cost of construction and land. After all that if it’s still too low or too high, you can accept the higher rent and open the building anyway. The game will say that people may not want to pay that much to live there, but since when has that stopped people from buying up property in Williamsburg before?
Is the game fun? Is any educational game fun besides Where in the “World is Carmen Sandiego” or “Oregon Trail?” Probably not, but that’s not the point. The game’s webpage has much more detail into the thinking behind the game, such as apartment size, real estate taxes and more.
h/t to Curbed for originally reporting on the games launch.
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