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Before the rise of the internet and affordable/free apps on smartphones, I've always had an obsession with designing the perfect and most efficient way to direct car traffic, whether it was on paper, with Lego, or with toy cars. And so Traffic Lanes 2 turned out to be the perfect Android game. This game has many similarities to popular game Flight Control, except instead drawing the flight-path for planes, you control the traffic signals on the street for cars.
Basics of Traffic Lanes 2
Traffic Lanes 2 is a free game, with no in game purchases. However, the game is ad-supported, so you'll see a banner on the bottom at most times. There are no annoying video ads. There are many variations of traffic controls games on the Android App Store, but what makes Traffic Lanes 2 stand out is:
- It uses real (what I think) is real world imagery from a satellite perspective.
- You control the traffic light, not each individual vehicle.
- Many aspects of the road to handle, including two way car traffic, emergency vehicles, pedestrians, controls circles, trains, and rail cars.
- Night time, rain, and snow are other conditions that make the game more challenging.
- Scenarios that include both left and right side of the road driving.
- If a driver is left waiting too long, road rage kicks in and the driver attempts to run the light. Most of the time, this causes an accident. Pedestrians will attempt to jaywalk if they're left waiting too long.
The game is fairly addicting. To be honest, I almost gave up on the game after playing a few times because the controls can be that challenging to master. Once I got a hang of changing lights on demand, the Traffic Lanes 2 became much more interesting. It became less of controlling the signal lights to more of figuring out which lights could be changed in unison for the more efficient and optical method of directing traffic.
There are a few game modes, including "Reach Goal", "Arcade", and "Simulation". Of them all, "Reach Goal" is the most interesting because of the mentality of reaching a goal given a limited time (24 hours). If you get really addicted, try "Arcade" which is unlimited time until the first accident, and "Simulation" which is lets you play forever, even after accidents.
Traffic Lanes 2 Wish List of Improvement?
No game is perfect, and that includes Traffic Lanes 2. Here are a list of changes I would propose seeing in future version of this game:
- The imagery makes the traffic lane markers more difficult to see, especially at night or when it is raining or snowing.
- The changing of signal lights his fairly good (I like that you can type or swipe), but the process can still be refined. I don't recall how many frustrating moments happen when I unintentionally switched a light from Red to Green causing a car accident.
- Having the ability to disable day/night changes and weather.
- An easier way to remove car accidents. In most instances, a car accident means there's no chance of passing the level.
All in all, I have enjoyed countless hours both working out the the puzzle game of efficiency, and felt like I've beat most of the levels of interest. I would probably attempt some of the more difficult levels, such as the "Rush Hour" category if I were playing on a tablet, but trying to control that many lights on a small Nexus 6P was enough of a challenge. If you like efficiency based android games, give Traffic Lanes 2 a try.