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 Mall Tycoon 2

Mall Tycoon 2

                           FAQ/STRATEGY GUIDE TO
                               MALL TYCOON 2

                              game created by
                            GLOBAL STAR SOFTWARE

                            this guide written by
                                Version 2.00


1.00 - 	First creation.

2.00 - 	Added information from reader contributions.
	Added information about objects and mall rating.
	Added information about shop effects on shoppers.
	Added information about new ways to cheat!
	Most new additional information will be contained within
	two sets of three asteriks:
	new info


          [CHART 1]  STORE LIST
     [C]  RESEARCH
          [CHART 2]  RESEARCH TREE
          [CHART 3]  EMPLOYEE LIST



Welcome to my guide on MALL TYCOON 2 (MT2).  I would first like to give 
Global Star Software a grand "Thank You" for producing such a fun and 
addictive game with detailed graphics and great sound and music.  Please, 
when you have a few minutes go visit and chat with us
on the forums.

I would first like to say that this is my first FAQ/STRATEGY guide and that
all info contained herein is a culmination of hours of trial and error, 
observation, and shear dumb luck.  All I had to go on was the manual, the
game itself, and my own experience with simulation/resource managment games.
If anyone finds that any info in this guide is erroneous, my explainations
are difficult to understand, or you just have some new info to add then drop
me a line at and have the subject read:


This is because I have many filters on my email account and this will let me
know that your email is worth opening.  I should not have to say this but,
PLEASE make sure you computer is clean of viruses and such before sending
me any messages.  Thank You!

Now for some legal stuff:

This guide is Copyrighted under law and cannot be reproduced by others without
express writen permission from me.  You may not link directly to this document
or display a copy of it on any website.  I worked long and hard to get this
information and I would like to be credited for my work.

A Note About Pronouns:

I will tend to use masculine pronouns throughout my document.  This is not
intended to disrespect or in any way ostrisize the female population.  It is
just how I write.  Thank you for your understanding in this matter.

Also, knowing that this game (MT2) is NOT a Maxis game I know that the
simulated people are not "sims".  For all I know that term may belong to Maxis.
If it is a Maxis term then I give them full credit for its coining.  I,
however, may from time to time refer to the simulated people of MT2 as 
"sims" to stand for "simulated shopper".  If Maxis does not like this term
used in this guide they need only contact me and I will write a revision.

OK, now onto the good stuff!


On the forums for MT2 I have noticed a rather large number of people
complaining that they can't install the game on thier computer or that after 
installation it will not run properly.  Unfortunately, I can't help with the
installation since mine installed just fine.  But, I can give some tips on 
getting it to run.

1:  make certain that you have the minimum requirements for the game:
     win 98/win Me/win XP (I have xp)
     128 MB RAM (I have 256)
     800 Mhz processor (I have 1.33 Ghz)
     32 MB video card (I have an NVIDIA GeForce 2 MX)
     Direct X 8.1a or better (I have Direct X 9.1a)
     450 MB of free disk space (I have tons!)

2:  make certain you have all your drivers for all your hardware updated.

3:  make certain that your screen resolution is set to:
     800X600 and 32bit color

4:  when the title screen appears there will be a drop down box in the upper
    left corner of the screen.  make certain to set that to 
    800X600 and 32bit color.  Even if your screen resolution matches what is in
    the drop down box you may still get a blank screen when you press play.
    I had my settings at 1024X760 and 32bit color and set the game to the same
    but the screen still went blank.  800X600 32bit color is the only combo
    that seems to work.  I also had the same trouble with SimCity 4
    (conflicting screen resolutions kept putting my monitor to sleep).

That is the best advice I can give since doing those things got my copy up and 


I have also noticed a few glitches during normal game play.
Watch out for these:

1:  after playing for 15+ game years and having a 2 story mall with max crowd
    level, the music would stop playing and the sub menus (like the save menu)
    would look all messed up.  trying to hit the buttons blindly caused a 
    save file to be deleted permenantly.
2:  very long loading times for large malls.  give it a minute or two
    especially if you comp is known to be slow, before restarting your comp.
3:  invisible people.  when you have a thriving mall there may be so many 
    people that some of them wont be visible.  They still cast a shadow
    and you can see their purchases but they look like little ghosts.  This 
    may be bad if it happens to an employee especially when you need to fire
4:  after exiting the game there is a very long unloading process which takes
    a few minuets.  again just be patient.
5:  One time I got an error message from windows after exiting MT2 saying that
    I was using too much virtual memory.  I believe that MT2 uses quite a bit
    Memory during game play which is what is causing all the glitches.  this
    is why they recommend 256 MB as opposed to the minimum 128 MB.
6:  the biggest and worst glitch so far is the "Level Building Site" button
    in the options submenu.  this will definately level your mall and clear
    the site of all people, employees, construction, and litter, but, 
    it will NOT reset your salary costs!  if you ever want to level
    your mall and start over (for instance you have made 1 million dollars
    and want to change your design) then i suggest putting the game on pause
    and deleting everything manually making sure to manually fire all

The best solution I can come up with is to save often and take breaks.  When
you take a break exit out of MT2 completely to give your computer a little 

OK, technical stuff is out of the way.  I certainly hope it was helpful!


At this point in time I am not going to commit myself to rewriting
and explaining the manual to you since you have it right infront of you and
it is available online at  But, I do want to
specify that there are two modes of play:

Free Build and Scenerio

This first large section of the guide will cover the strategies that can be 
used in either mode but will mainly concentrate on Free Build.  I have not
attempted the Scenerios as of yet, but when I do I will take notes and 
add strategies for the Scenerios at a later date.  Hopefully, with the info
in this edition of the guide you will be able to become a true tycoon and 
can conquor the scenerios on your own.

Just as some general information here are some statistics about the game:

TIME:	one month on slow speed lasts about 120 seconds.
	one month on medium speed lasts about 60 seconds.
	one month on fast speed lasts about 40 second.

	Easy mode will give you 150k
	Medium mode will give you 100k
	Hard mode will give you 50k

STARTING MALL RATING BY PERCENTAGE (out of 2000 possible points):
	Easy mode will give you 55%
	Medium mode will give you 50%
	Hard mode will give you 45%

	Determined by your choice in the Free Build option menu.


To become a true tycoon of the mall you must first understand the basic
concept behind the game's design.  Of course the main idea is to build a mall
with shops, have the sims spend their money and you make a profit.  There is
no way to win the game in Free Build mode so the ultimate goal is one that
you set for yourself.  It is possible, however, to lose if at any time your
account goes below $0.  I personally just enjoy designing for the sake of 
creation and my goal is to not go bankrupt.

I make most all descriptions of the game based on the default free build
option settings.  I will make a note where I can remember to about what
effects the settings have on the game.

You will start Free Build mode on January 1, 2003.  Your account will contain
$150,000 (from now on I will refer to money without the "$" symbol because
I am lazy, and I will use the letter "k" to denote thousands so,
$150,000 = 150k).  You are given an empty black lot on which to build your
empire.  The lot is 48 tiles X 48 tiles.

You will start with 150k on easy mode, 100k on medium, and 50k on hard.

To the North is a parking garage where you can see cars comming and going.  
To the West is a train station where you can see a train arriving from time
to time.
To the South is a bus stop where you can see sims getting off the bus now and
To the East is a suburb of homes from where sims will walk to your mall.

these sims are like real people.  They have needs and desires and are willing
to spend money to have those needs and desires fullfilled.  The happier
a sim is the longer they will stay in your mall and thus the more money they
will be willing to part with.  To keep sims happy you must increase your mall
rating (we will discuss details later).  sims also want to feel safe from
criminals who arrive at your mall from time to time, so, you also need tight 
security.  sims also dont like getting confused so an efficient mall design
is essential to a profitable bussiness.

Your income is totaly dependant on the sales of the stores in your mall.
The more your stores sell the more money you can potentially make.  For your
stores to be successful they need foot traffic.  The higher your crowd level
the more income you get.

Lets review:  

Ultimate goal is profit -> Profit comes from store sales ->  High sales come
from High crowd level ->  High crowd level comes from High mall rating ->
High mall rating comes from tight security, clean walkways, and an efficient
and freindly mall design.

So that is the basic concept.  Lets move on to the specifics!



to reach our ultimate goal of profit we need to work backward through our 
chain of dependancy from the review above.  So the first idea we will work on
is basic mall design.

First and foremost, you should always put the game on pause while doing any
construction, at least until you get the hang of things.

Now, sit back and think about all the malls you have ever been in.
What about their designs comes to mind?  in all the malls I have ever been in
there has always been an overwhelming theme of straight corridors with tightly
packed stores on either side.  some of the bigger malls have a huge landscaped 
area in the middle (which we will call an atrium).  the reason for this kind
of design is that straight corridors are easy to get around in, if you are
always turning corners every few steps you can get lost and eventually you
are spending your time trying to find the exit instead of spending your money.

some basic shapes are the square, |, T, L, and the cross.  Notice how these 
shapes have few if any corners.  a good design to start off with is the |
or the line.  it has no corners so sims can see all the stores right when
they walk in and can concentrate on shopping instead needing to look for a map.

The best place to start building your mall is in the direct center of the lot.
you will need to spend a little money to find it by placing floor tiles.  start
in one corner and place 24 floor tiles in one direction.  starting on the last
tile lay 24 tiles in a perpendicular direction.  the last tile of the second
line is the lower left corner of the four center tiles.  it will be a good idea
to mark these four tiles in some way and then save the game under a generic
name so that you can start here again for a new mall later on. We want to 
start in the middle because the sims will be comming from all four directions
at once and the longer they walk to get to your mall the less time they will
spend in it.  also starting in the center ensures optimum expansion

Of course, we could manipulate where the sims come from in the free build
option screen.  if you want all the sims to come from foot trafic you 
could build your mall in the East to insure easy comming and going
of the sims.  But, always keep in mind the idea of expansion; starting
in the middle gives the best options for doing so.

once you have found your center (breathe slowly and focus your chi...! oops),
create a rectangle 10 tiles X 22 tiles.  You can orrient the mall in eiter
direction, i prefer to place my mall longways east and west.

it is ok if you dont get the exact center.  if my directions are too confusing
then just ignore them and center your mall by sight.

Now, go to your objects database (the hand carrying the red case, then the
bench) and find the entrances.  choose which one you like, they all cost the
same and have no effect on game play.  Place one entrance in the middle of 
each wall.  this gives all sims from each direction a door of their very own.

once you place an entrance you may see a cobbled path appear which will
lead from the entrance to the closest area where sims will arrive from.
this has no affect on game play but it is an interesting effect.

Now go to your units database and select the single/boutique.  We will 
disscuss the differences in gameplay of each unit later, for right now a 
single will do just fine.  place three units in each corner making sure to 
position the unit so that the opening is facing the center aisle.  when this is 
done you should have three singles, one tile, an entrance, one tile, and three
singles on the top and bottom of your mall.  there should be four tiles
between each set of three units.

                         North (parking Garage)

             _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ E E _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ 
            |u u u|u u u|u u u|       |u u u|u u u|u u u|
            |u 1 u|u 2 u|u 3 u|       |u 4 u|u 5 u|u 6 u|
            |u u u|u u u|u u u|       |u u u|u u u|u u u|
            |                                           |
            E                                           E
            E                                           E
            |                                           |
            |u u u|u u u|u u u|       |u u u|u u u|u u u|
            |u 7 u|u 8 u|u 9 u|       |u10 u|u11 u|u12 u|
            |u u u|u u u|u u u|       |u u u|u u u|u u u|
             - - - - - - - - - - E E - - - - - - - - - - 
                            South (Bus Stop)

Just as a general note:  having all aisleways four tiles wide is a good idea
becasue this will give the opportunity to add other objects later like ATMs,
maps, plants, lights, and most importantly stairs and elevators!

At this point we have our skeleton mall.  Our current short term goals 
are as follows:
1.  put stores into the units in a strategic money making way!
2.  do some initial research to get our security net up and running and
    to make sure our floors are nice and neat.
3.  fine tune our stores for optimum income.
4.  continue with mid-range research to help raise mall rating and tighten 
5.  reduce crime rate to 0.
6.  increase crowd level to max.
7.  continue with research.
8.  add objects and special additions to increase mall rating.
9.  expand!
10. repeat steps 1, 3, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10 at a moderate pace for maximum income.


The store database is located under the hand with the red case, then under the 
symbol with three colored blocks.  here we have 8 catagories of stores:

(1) clothing/fashion
(2) electronics
(3) food
(4) entertainment/media
(5) health/beauty
(6) home improvement
(7) services
(8) sports and leisure

Under each catagory is another list of different types of stores.  Some of
the choices are grayed out right now because they need to be researched.  
Here is a list of all the stores in the game and any relevant info I have
discovered including build cost, item price, and any known stores that
help to enhance sales when they are nearby.

I must say here that the information in the NOTES section is all based on
my personal experience and observation as I have found no hard evidence
to support my claims in said section.  Do your own experiments and see
if you can find anything new!

          [CHART 1]  STORES


STORE NAME           BUILD COST@    ITEM PRICE*              NOTES
Guys Gear                1k          100/150    one of the best starters
                                                compliments A Stitch in Time
Gals Gear                1k          100/150    I can never get this one 
                                                to work well
Trendy Teens             1k          100/150
Kids Clobber             1k          100/150
Lingerie Glory           1k          125/175    another high profit store
Footstep Shoes           1250        150/175    every mall should have one
                                                of these
                                                compliments Bangles and Bags
Sport Sense              1250        100/150    compliments Total Sports
Bangles and Bags         1250        150/175    compliments Footstep Shoes
The Denim Co.            2k          175/200    #
Luxury Leathers          2k          200/300    #
Bridal Bliss             3k          500/700    #
Gems n' Jewels           5k          500/700    #

 @ = all stores come in single unit sizes so the cost reflects one unit.
 * = item price makes more sense when you think of it as the cost of the 
     average sale since many people buy more than one thing at a time.
     also the first number is the item price when the store is in a 
     single or department unit and the number after the / is the item price
     when the store is the sole occupent of a wide or deep unit.
 # = must be researched


STORE NAME           BUILD COST@    ITEM PRICE*              NOTES
Strung Up                1k         300/400      seems to work well with 
                                                 Sounds Alive and Music Zone
Sounds Alive             1k         300/400      seems to work well with
                                                 Sturng Up and Video's 
                                                 and DVD's
PC Power                 1k         600/750      The high item price makes
                                                 this a risky investment
                                                 for a new mall
Appliance Hut            1k         200/275      does well on its own
                                                 compliments GS Furnishings
                                                 and Bathroom and Kitchen
Secure It                1k         100/150
Fusion Phones            3k         200/275      #
Gadget Store             3k         200/275      #
Alienware                3k         400/500      #

     (3)  FOOD

STORE NAME           BUILD COST@    ITEM PRICE*              NOTES
Choco Heaven            .5k          60/75       great starter food store
The Coffee Corporation  .5k          60/80       compliments News Stand and
                                                 Magazines and Bookworm
Burger Place            .5k          50/60       an OK store
Ice Palace               1k          50/70       another good starter
Pret a Pretzel          .5k          50/70       only OK
Virtual Pizza            1k          60/75       I have had bad luck with 
                                                 this one
Wok and Roll            .5k          90/150      #
Dave's Deli              1k          60/75       #


STORE NAME           BUILD COST@    ITEM PRICE*              NOTES
Bookworm                750          100/150     compliments Coffee
Music Zone              750          100/150     seems to compliment Strung
The Gamer               750          150/200     should compliment PC Power
News Stand and 
    Magazines           750          50/75       compliments Coffee
Videos and DVDs          1k          100/150     Seems to compliment Sounds
Mr. Fantazio's Toys      1k          100/150     I've had mixed results 
The Collectors Curios    1k          250/300     #
Model Makers World       1k          150/200     #


STORE NAME           BUILD COST@    ITEM PRICE*              NOTES
Skin Deep Makeup        1k           150/200     never works well for me
Perfumes and Aromas     1.5k         200/275     compliments The Salon
Pharmacist              1k           150/200     works great by itself
                                                 compliments Dental Surgery
                                     (the dentist prescribes the meds
                                      and the pharmacist fills it)
Vital Vitamins          1.5k         200/275     mixed results
Dental Surgery          1.5k         200/275     compliments Pharmacist
The Salon               1k           150/200     works good alone or
                                                 compliments Perfumes and 
New Vision              1.5k         200/275     
Body Beautiful          2.5k         300/400     #
Health Spa              3.5k         400/500     #


STORE NAME           BUILD COST@    ITEM PRICE*              NOTES
Bathroom and            
   Kitchen              1k           200/275     seems to compliment
                                                 GS Furnishings and 
                                                 Appliance Hut
GS Furnishings          1.5k         300/400     seems to compliment
                                                 Appliance Hut and
                                                 Bath and Kitchen
House Proud             1k           200/275     seem to compliment DIY
Green Fingers           1.5k         200/275     
DIY Hardware            1.5k         200/275     seems to compliment
                                                 House Proud and 
                                                 Car Care
Pet Supplies            1k            90/140     
Fine Art Emporium       1k           300/400     #
Wix-Mix Candles         1k           200/275     #

     (7)  SERVICE

STORE NAME           BUILD COST@    ITEM PRICE*              NOTES
Dry Cleaning            1k           150/200
The Photo Lab           1k           150/200     works ok on its own
Postal Service          1k            75/100
A Stitch in Time        1.5k         150/200     compliments Guys Gear
The Studio              1.5k         250/300     #
Dragon Tattos           1k           150/200     #


STORE NAME           BUILD COST@    ITEM PRICE*              NOTES
Art Stuff               1k           150/200
Car Care                1k           200/275    seems to compliment DIY
The Great Outdoors      1k           200/275    seems to compliment 
                                                Total Sports
Total Sports            1k           150/200    seems to compliment
                                                The Great Outdoors and
                                                Sport Sense
Surfs Up                1k           200/275    #
Sun Burst Tanning       1k           200/275    #
World Travel		2.5k	     500/750	#, I forgot this store
						the first time.

Some general notes on compliments:
for a store to "compliment" another they should be as close as possible like
two singles touching one another or both stores sharing a wide, deep, or
department unit. the touching singles should have their entrances facing the
same way, back to back will not work.  if two compliments are across an aisle
from each other they only seem to compliment if the aisle is 2 tiles wide
but i still suggest making all aisles 4 wide.

some store types affect others in a negative way also.  food stores generally
decrease the effectivness of clothing stores.  Vital Vitamins seems to be
compitition for the pharmacist and News Stand seems to be competition for 

the best way to optimize your store set up is to think about the stores in a 
logical manner.  how would you like to see stores set up in a real mall.  most
customers (and sims) would like all their favorite stores in the same general 
area so they spend all their money fast and get home to have some fun.
Spending money fast is ok just so long as they spend it.

Another good tip is to keep your food stores to a minimum.  One thing that
every sim will want to do in your mall is eat.  and if they only have one
choice then every sim will spend their money at least once in the food store.
a bigger mall will need more food stores so sims dont have to walk all day.  
But, keep your food stores spread out and keep them away from the clothing.


Guys Gear	40	30	70	40	70	40	70	30
Gals Gear 	20	40	20	80	30	80	20	50
Trendy Teens	30	30	80	80	40	40	10	10
Kids Clobber	80	80	40	40	40	40	10	10
Lingerie Glory	10	40	20	70	20	70	10	40
Footstep Shoes	30	30	30	70	50	70	30	30
Sport Sense	50	30	80	40	70	50	40	20
Bangles and Bags20	40	20	60	40	60	20	60
The Denim Co.	30	30	60	60	60	60	30	30
Luxury Leathers	20	20	60	60	60	60	30	30
Bridal Bliss	10	10	20	20	30	60	10	10
Gems n' Jewels	10	10	30	40	40	60	30	40
Strung Up	10	10	60	40	60	50	20	20
Sounds Alive	10	10	60	60	50	50	10	10
PC Power	10	10	50	50	60	60	10	10
Appliance Hut	10	10	30	30	70	30	70	30
Secure It	10	10	10	10	50	50	70	70
Fusion Phones	20	20	70	70	70	70	10	10
Gadget Store	20	20	70	20	70	20	60	20
Alienware	30	20	80	30	95	30	60	20
Choco Heaven	70	70	40	70	40	70	20	30
The Coffee 	10	10	20	20	70	70	50	50
Burger Place	60	60	60	60	60	60	20	20
Ice Palace	70	70	60	70	40	60	10	20
Pret a Pretzel	10	10	40	40	60	60	70	70
Virtual Pizza	50	50	50	50	50	50	50	50
Wok and Roll	10	10	40	40	60	60	50	50
Dave's Deli	30	30	50	50	60	60	50	50
Bookworm	30	30	40	40	60	60	60	60
Music Zone	30	30	80	80	60	60	10	10
The Gamer	60	60	70	60	40	40	10	10
News Stand 	10	10	60	60	60	60	60	60
Videos and DVDs	30	30	60	60	60	60	50	50
Mr. Fantazio's	80	80	60	60	30	30	10	10
The Collectors	10	10	30	30	30	30	60	50
Model Makers	40	20	60	40	60	40	60	40
Skin Deep Makeup10	10	20	70	20	70	20	50
Perfumes 	10	10	10	70	10	70	10	50
Pharmacist	10	10	30	30	50	50	70	70
Vital Vitamins	10	10	20	20	40	40	70	70
Dental Surgery	20	20	50	50	50	50	60	60
The Salon	30	30	50	70	50	70	20	50
New Vision	10	10	50	50	50	50	70	70
Body Beautiful	10	10	30	30	70	70	20	20
Health Spa	10	10	30	30	70	70	20	20
Bathroom and    10	10	30	30	60	60	40	40       
GS Furnishings	10	10	30	30	40	40	40	40
House Proud	10	10	30	30	50	50	50	50
Green Fingers	10	10	30	30	60	60	60	60
DIY Hardware	10	10	30	30	60	30	60	30
Pet Supplies	10	10	30	30	50	50	60	60
Fine Art	10	10	10	10	50	50	30	30
Wix-Mix Candles	10	10	30	30	40	40	30	30
Dry Cleaning	10	10	20	20	40	40	30	30
The Photo Lab	20	20	50	50	60	60	40	40
Postal Service	20	20	50	50	50	50	50	50
A Stitch in Time10	10	40	40	60	50	70	30
The Studio	20	20	40	40	40	40	40	40
Dragon Tattos	10	10	40	40	40	40	10	10
Art Stuff	40	40	40	40	50	50	40	40
Car Care	10	10	10	10	70	30	60	30
The Outdoors	10	10	20	20	60	50	60	20
Total Sports	50	30	60	30	60	50	30	30
Surfs Up	20	20	70	40	60	40	10	10
Sun Burst	20	20	40	60	50	60	20	30
World Travel	10	10	30	30	50	50	50	50

Getting back to our starter mall from above, I will suggest the following 
stores (notice that the units in the blue prints above (copied below
also) are numbered left to right):

                        North (parking Garage)
             _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ E E _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ 
            |u u u|u u u|u u u|       |u u u|u u u|u u u|
            |u 1 u|u 2 u|u 3 u|       |u 4 u|u 5 u|u 6 u|
            |u u u|u u u|u u u|       |u u u|u u u|u u u|
            |                                           |
            E                                           E
            E                                           E
            |                                           |
            |u u u|u u u|u u u|       |u u u|u u u|u u u|
            |u 7 u|u 8 u|u 9 u|       |u10 u|u11 u|u12 u|
            |u u u|u u u|u u u|       |u u u|u u u|u u u|
             - - - - - - - - - - E E - - - - - - - - - - 
                           South (Bus Stop)

1 Pharmacist
2 Dental Surgery
3 Ice Cream Palace
  (my logic here is that a sim will find out he has a tooth ache when
   he eats the cold ice cream, then he goes to the dentist and has surgery,
   now he needs his pain meds so he goes to the pharmacist)
4 Guys Gear
5 A Stitch in Time
6 Footstep Shoes
  (the logic here is a guy buys a nice suit but needs it tailored and what
   goes well with a nice suit other than a nice pair of shoes)
7 Music Zone
8 Strung Up
9 Sounds Alive
  (the logic here is a sim hears a nice song on the sound system, then
   goes next door to get the sheet music or an instrument to play it, then
   goes to the music cd store so he can listen to the song on his new
   sound system while he trys to play the song at home on his new instrument)
10 Total Sports
11 Sport Sense
12 Bengals and Bags
   (while the husband looks at sport stuff the wife can buy a new purse)

For now keep the game paused and dont touch the sales cut or rent just yet.
of course you can do what you want, but this is the setup I used to do all
my research for this FAQ/STRATGUIDE so I know it works! ;)

Notes on Unit sizes:

There are 4 unit sizes:  single, wide, deep, and department.

A single is a 3x3 unit, a wide is two singles side by side, a deep is two
singles front to back, and a department is four singles arranged in a square.

the single is your basic unit, it costs 1k and you will use this a lot!

the wide and the deep both work the same way.  They both cost 1.5k (save 500
over using two singles).  you can either put two seperate store types together
or you can fill it with one store type to make one big store.
having two types is great if they compliment each other because there is no
annoying wall between them like there is with two singles.  So, your sims
can enter one and go straight to the other for uninterrupted shopping.  The
disadvantage here is that even though they are treated as seperate stores
when you set the rent and sales cut rates it sets it for both stores.  so, if
one of the stores is not doing as well as the other one you have to lower the 
rent for both and lose out on the extra income from the one that is doing well.

if both the stores are the same then it is treated as one big store.
The advantage here is that the item price goes up so your sims must pay more
for the item they want.  the increase isn't so much to dissuade your sims from
buying and it is high enough to gain decent profit.  the dissadvantage though
is that the rent for the store is doubled since it is twice a big.  this
means it must sell twice as much as a single or it will begin to fail.
I would only suggest using a wide or deep when your mall is going strong and 
then experiment.

The department unit is quite odd.  It will cost you 2k (a bargain over 4
singles).  you can place up to 4 different stores together or any 
combination of stores up to 4.  the advantages here are the same as the 
ones for wides and deeps with different store types so long as you are using
compliment stores (4 stores in close proximity with no walls to slow down sims)
the down side is that if you place 4 stores of the same
type it will not recognize it as one big store so you still have to keep track
of 4 seperate stores all with the same name (of course you could change the 
names) and the item price does not increase.  also if you place 4 of the same
store type in a department then each store will act as compitition for the
others.  I would only recomened putting four different types in a department
unit, but, hey, it is your mall :).  there is another advantage to 
the department store in that it will help increase potential crowd level.
But, I will get into that later in a different section.

For now that is all we need to know about stores and placement.  Later we will 
disscuss rent, sales cut, maintenance and making a profit.


Employees and research go hand in hand.  Your employees are the ones
that do the research and you just give them extra money to get it done.
In this section I will only disscus employees as they relate to the 
research tree.  In the next section I will get into detail about how
to use the employees effectivly.

To find the employee/research database, click on the hand holding the brown
case and then click on the button with the picture of people on it.  in this 
submenu you will see three buttons; a mop, a security camera, and a pen.  The
mop is for your maintenance workers like janitors, handymen and gardeners.
These guys keep your mall working and clean.  the camera is your security
workers.  these guys are essential for keeping criminals at bay and making your
sims feel safe while they shop.  finally the pen is for administrative 
personnel.  these guys are the paper work manager types.  they provide a lot
of the research needed to find the other jobs in the first place and they
also contribute to mall rating (a very good thing!).

When you first start the game the only employee you have available is the 
personnel assistant.  She can do research, initially, for four more employee
positions; greeter, personnel officer, hired goon, and cleaner.  to begin
research click on the item to right of the employee you wish to research
then click on the button beneath it (it has a clip board with paper on it).  
as long as the game is unpaused you will see a pink bar fill up under the 
research title.  when the bar is full you have discovered something new!  
you may research as many topics as you like so long as you can afford the 
research costs.  costs will begin to steadily increase the more advanced the
research becomes.

I have compiled below an exhaustive list of all the research topics and how
to get to them.  remember i had to do this on my own during normal game play
with a working mall to fund the research and even though I could have done
many topics at once I had to do it one at a time so I could find out what
topic was a prerequisite for what.  Some of my info may not be entirely
accurate,but, it is a complicated tree.  if anyone finds that my tree is flawed
please let me know.

          [CHART 2]  RESEARCH

(D) = Default topic/no prerequisite other than the employee himself
(E) = Topic gives access to new employee type
(O) = Topic gives access to new objects
(N) = Topic gives a general enhancement to mall/imporves mall rating
(SP)= Topic gives access to special additions to the mall
(S) = Topic gives access to more store types

TIME = 	The amount of real time in seconds to complete the research at the
	slowest speed.  
	At medium speed the time is reduced by 1/2, thus 60 seconds becomes
	30 seconds.
	At fast speed the time is reduced by 1/3, thus 60 seconds becomes
	20 seconds.


	RESEARCH	    PRE-       
	Personnel Officer   (D)           2K         (E)	120
	Greeter             (D)           1K         (E)	60
	Hired Goon          (D)           1K         (E)	60
	Cleaner             (D)           1K         (E)	60
	Mall Mgr        (Personnel Off.)  4K         (E)	120
                                               (This will also
                                               reduce upkeep
                                               cost on units)
	Janitor         (Mop and Bucket)  4K         (E)	120

	Public Relations    (D)           3K         (E)	120
	Promotional Leaflet (D)           1K         (N)	60
	Free Gifts      (Promotional      2K         (N)	90
	Child playroom      (D)           5K         (SP)	120
	Customer Advice     (D)           5K         (SP)	180

	Gardener            (D)           4K         (E)	120
	Rent a Cop      (Thug Training)   3K         (E)	90
	Handyman        (Janitor)         4K         (E)	90
	Security Guard  (Radios)          5K         (E)	150
	Designer        (Mall Manager)    4K         (E)	150
	Engineer        (Handyman)        8K         (E)	150
	Mall Police     (Handguns)        8K         (E)	150

HIRED GOON           	
	Thug Training       (D)           2K         (N)	60

	Mop and Bucket      (D)           1k         (N)	60
	Trash Cans          (D)           1k         (O)	60
	Sanitation Engineer (Mop and
                            Bucket        3K         (E)	90
	Graffiti Remover    (D)           2K         (N)	90
	Bathrooms        (Plumbing)       4K         (SP)	90
	Baby Changing    (Bathrooms)      4K         (N)	90

	Floor Polisher      (D)           3K         (N)	60
	Auto Floor Cleaner  (D)           2K         (N)	90

	Bowling Alley       (D)           20K        (SP)	120
	Cinema              (D)           15K        (SP)	120
	Marketing           (D)           5K         (E)	120
	ATM             (Retail Mgr)      4K         (O)	60
	Bank            (Retail Mgr)      15K        (SP)	120
	Arcade          (Retail Mgr)      8K         (SP)	60
	Restaurants     (Retail Mgr)      10K        (SP)	120

	Retail Mgr          (D)           5K         (E)	150
	Brand Licence   (Retail Mgr)      20K        (N)	120
	Internet Cafe   (Retail Mgr)      5K         (SP)	150

	Leisure             (D)           8K         (S)	150
	Service             (D)           8K         (S)	150
	Exotic Food         (D)           8K         (S)	150
	Health              (D)           8K         (S)	150
	Arts                (D)           8K         (S)	120
	Hobbies             (D)           8K         (S)	120
	Electronics         (D)           8K         (S)	150
	Fashion             (D)           8K         (S)	120

	Atriums             (D)           5K         (SP)	60
	Lamps               (D)           1K         (O)	30
	Sculptures          (D)           4K         (O)	30
	Maps                (D)           1K         (O)	30
	Rides           (Engineer)        4K         (O)	60
	Fountains       (Plumbing)        8K         (O)	90

	Landscaping         (D)           5K         (O)	150
	Flowers             (D)           2K         (O)	60
	Shrubs           (Flowers)        3K         (O)	60
	Trees            (Shrubs)         6K         (O)	90
	Cactus           (Trees)          8K         (O)	120
	Tropical         (Cactus)         10K        (O)	120

RENT A COP           
	Radios              (D)           4K         (N)	90
	Batons              (D)           3K         (N)	90

	Electronic Tags  (Engineer)       8K         (N)	120
	Metal Detectors  (Engineer)       8K         (N)	120
	Security Cntl Rm (Engineer)       15K        (N)	150
	Handguns         (Sec Cntl Rm)    15K        (N)	120
	Security Cameras (Sec Cntl Rm)    10K        (O)	150

	Workshop            (D)           5K         (N)	120
	Wall Insulation     (D)           3K         (N)	90
                                                (This will also
                                                reduce upkeep
                                                cost on units)
	Object Repair       (D)           3K         (N)	90
	Plumbing         (Workshop)       3K         (N)	100
	Lighting         (Workshop)       2K         (N)	90

MALL POLICE          
	Advanced Training   (D)           5K         (N)	150
	Police Cntl Rm      (D)           30K        (N)	150
	Under Cover Cop  (Advanced Train) 40K        (E)	240

	Criminal Database   (D)           40K        (N)	240

	Solar Panels     (Workshop)       7K         (N)	120
                                                (This will also
                                                reduce upkeep
                                                cost on units)
	Natural Lighting (Workshop)       2K         (N)	120
	Automatic Doors  (Workshop)       3K         (N)	90
	Lifts            (Workshop)       20K        (O)	150
	Escalators       (Workshop)       12K        (O)	120
	Heating          (Plumbing)       3K         (N)	100
	AC               (Plumbing)       3K         (N)	100
                            TOTAL COST  -   559K

(D) = Default topic/no prerequisite other than the employee himself
(E) = Topic gives access to new employee type
(O) = Topic gives access to new objects
(N) = Topic gives a general enhancement to mall/imporves mall rating
(SP)= Topic gives access to special additions to the mall
(S) = Topic gives access to more store types

Now back to our mall in progress.  Find your Personnel Assistant and select
the Personnel Officer, Hired Goon, and Cleaner and start researching all
three at once.  We dont need the Greeter right now and she is not a prereq
for anything important.  Make sure to unpause the game to get the research 
going.  I suggest putting the speed on slow speed (there are three speeds) 
until you get the hang of things.  while you are waiting for the Hired Goon 
to be researched you may get a message that a criminal has entered the mall.  
dont worry about it.  most of the time a criminal will get to the mall before 
you can get a chance to place your first gaurds.  It happens to us all ;)

when your research is done a nice ding will sound and a message will appear
at the bottom of the screen saying what has been completed.  Now pause
the game again and get ready to hire some employees!


As stated above there are three types of employees:  laborers, security,
administrative.  first I will list all the employees by type then I will
discuss the function and strategic use of each.

          [CHART 3]  EMPLOYEES
GREETER			100		N/A		N/A

HIRED GOON		100		5X5		2
RENT A COP		200		7X7		4
SECURITY GUARD		400		10X10		6
MALL POLICE		1K		15X15		8

CLEANER			100		5X5		25
JANITOR			400		10X10		75
HANDYMAN		400		5X5		25
ENGINEER		1K		10X10		75
GARDENER		300		10X10		50
TOTAL SALARY		12k per month
(1 each admin + 4 sec gaurd + 4 Janitor + 4 Engineer + 4 gardener)

VISUAL RANGE is for the security personnel.  that is the range within which
they can spot a criminal and have him arrested.  for the money and range,
security gaurds are my favorite.

SKILL is for the laborers.  this is the efficiency and speed at which they
perform thier duties.  the higher the number the better.

As you can see it takes quite a mall to make a profit with 12K in salaries 
per month.  If you dont have any electronic objects or plants you can forego
the Engineers and gardeners which knocks the monthly salaries down to about 7K.
If you forget about the admin then you have a reasonable 3K in salaries but
you risk having a lower mall rating.  decisions decisions ;)


the only reason to ever hire one of these guys is to increase mall rating.
I list their area of responsibility as Not Applicable since they will walk
freely over the entire surface of whatever floor you happen to put them on.
every once in a while they will bump into a sims and have a chat and make the 
sims more happy.  if you right click on an employee while they are walking
around you will see on the submenu a number that says tasks completed.
this number is the number of sims they have spoken to since you hired them.

since the bar graphs in the game do not give specific numbers I cant tell 
by how much a certain employee will raise the Mall rating.  
experimentation is the best course of action.  I generally dont hire any
until late in the game when I can afford them.  to be honest, mall rating is
not too hard to raise, so, you may not ever need one at all.  its all up
to you.


(first note that crime rate can be viewed by pressing the button with the 
brown case, then the button with the red doors.  there will be a sub menu
that has many bar graphs.  the three graphs in the lower left corner show
mall rating, crowd level, and crime rate.  these graphs dont give exact
figures you will have to do your best to guess)

crime rating can also be adjusted in the free build option menu before the 
game begins.  the level you set the initial bar is the level of crime you
will start with.  in the following explaination i use the default setting.
a higher initial crime lvl will require more security research to eliminate.

These guys should be your number one priority in the begining of the game.
Our first goal is the Security Guard.  Here is the plan to rush right to him:

Personnel Assist -> Hired Goon    -> Thug Training -> 
                    Personnel Off.                 -> Rent a Cop

Rent a Cop -> Radios -> {personnel officer} Security Guard

they are a little expensive early on in the game and if you find that
rushing is too taxing on the coffers then stick with rent a cops and research
radios and batons to make them more effective.  you really need to replace 
those lazy goons as soon as possible.  I have watched a criminal walk right 
in front of a hired goon on many occasions and the goon did nothing.  
what do you expect for 100 a month?

the key to good security for a low price is to hire at least as many 
security personnel as you have entrances to your mall.  place one guard near
his own entrance.  dont worry if their are areas of the interior that are not
covered by gaurd patrols.  remember if the gaurd is always standing at the door
then they should see the criminal as soon as they walk in, and if they sneak
in they still have to get out.  as far as I have seen, if a criminal steals
from a store and is caught then you get your money back.  please correct me if 
I am wrong.

For security personnel the task completed number refers to the number of 
criminals that guard has caught.

In our mall in progress we have four entrances; North, South, East, and West.
If you have four Security Guards standing post at each doorway your crime rate
will be nearly 0.  to get all the way to zero you must get the Engineer and
then research electronic tags, metal detectors and security control room.
after that your security will be so tight that criminals wont even bother
to show up.  If you decided to expand the first floor later and end up
with more entrances then you must add more guards or your crime rate may 
sneak back up on you.  always watch the crime rate and make adjustments when 


there are different levels of criminals that can enter you mall.  higher 
levels of criminals are more difficult to catch and require better
security.  everytime you get a message that says:
"Your lax mall security is attracting more dangerous criminals"
then a new level of criminal has been acheived.


Punk			50		Has a colorful mohawk
Thief			100		wears black and white stripes
Convict			200		wears orange jumpsuit
Shop Lifter		300		looks like a regular sim
Cat Burglar		400		wears all black
Goodfella		500		wears a suit and tie

Crime level and criminals, as far as i can tell, have no effect on
mall rating.  However, each criminal counts as a sim in your mall.
later on we will disscuss population caps.  but for now, just understand
that the more criminals you have in your mall the less sims there will
be to do shopping.


Our next and final catagory is the working class.  there are thee subtypes
of laborers:  sweepers, fixers, and the gardener.

The gardener is essential if you plan to have any landscaping or flora
in your mall.  such things are good to improve mall rating but they require 
watering by a gardener or they begin to wilt and attract flies (which lowers
mall rating).  when placing a gardener make sure his area of responsibility 
contains as many flowers as possible and make sure he can reach them via
normal pathways (i.e. he cant walk through walls or into stores).  if you cant 
contain all the flowers in one radius either higher another gardener for 300
a month or move or delete the offending plants.  his number of tasks is plants

The fixers include the handyman and the engineer.  these guys keep all your
electric objects up and running (i.e. ATMs, Phones, escalators, rides, etc).  
try to refain from placing any electronic objects before you have a fixer to
maintain it or else you will start to see it smoke when it breaks down.
also you must research the Object Repair topic under Handyman before
they will fix anything.  i prefer to use the engineer because he has much 
better skill and has a much larger area of responsiblity
(compare 5x5:25 to 10x10:75 that is more than 4 times the coverage for about
twice the cost).  number of tasks is number of objects repaired.

The sweepers should be your second priority.  they keep the walls free of
graffiti (put on by criminals) and your floors free of trash.  the Janitor is
my pick due to his large area (10x10) and better skill (75). 
place a few strategic trash cans you can reduce the amout of litter that
appears on the ground.  make sure that when placing sweepers that their areas
at least touch if not overlap,  you dont want to miss a single piece of trash.
each piece serves to lower your mall rating.  you could, if you wanted to,
just simply delete the offending pieces of trash but trust me when i say that 
you will want to spend your time doing better things than delete litter all day.
the sweepers are a good investment for their cost.  number of tasks is pieces
of litter swept.


except for personnel who dont have an area of responsibility an employee may
walk out side of your building from time to time so long as it is within his
area of responsibility.  this is ok especially for janitors since litter and
graffiti can occur outside of your building.  always remember that "your
mall" refers to the entire 48x48 black area not just the buildings you build.

All employees and sims alike have the freaky ability to walk through solid 
matter.  thats right, they walk through objects which you place on the floor.  
this is bad from a graphic stand point as it does not look good.  but, 
from a game play stand point this is great because you can add objects to
every tile for maximum mall rating and not interrupt the flow of traffic.

Unlike sims, employees cannot enter shops.  keep this in mind when planning
areas of responsiblity.  you can however center an employees area of
responsiblity inside a shop to optimize his walking area he just wont be able
to walk in every tile and that is ok.

to fire an employee (either due to budget cuts, or upgrading to a more
efficient position)  you should pause the game and then you must search
through your mall looking for the offending employee.  once discovered you can
right click on his head and you will see a submenu popup in the upper right
of the screen and you will see his current area outlined in blue.  to fire
him just click on the red button and he is canned.  to reposition him hit the 
blue button and move him to a new area.


Now for the topic most of you have been waiting for (of course if you skipped
right here then you havn't been waiting long;)

first lets disscus the topic of money managment.

your income is based on two things:  shop rent, and sales cut.

shop rent is set in the individual stores submenu.  the rent charged is 
per tile that the store occupies; so a store in a single is charged 
"rent" x 9 tiles, a wide or deep with one store type is charged 
"rent" x 18 tiles, etc.

Rent income is charged at the end (or beginning) of every month.
this means that rent income happens all at once at set intervals and
happens at the same time as all your expenses are charged.

sales cut is a bit odd and affects item price.  no matter what you set
sales cut to the store will always get the original item price for each 
sale which goes to ward its own income and profit.  but what happens when 
sales cut is increased past 0% is that you as the owner of the mall are
increasing the item price of the store by adding your sales cut to the item.
this increase is passed on to the sims.

heres an example.  gals gear has a base item price of 100 at 0% sales cut.
by setting sales cut to 25% the item increases to 125, so for every sale
the sims pays 125, the store gets 100 and you 25.  at 50% the item price is
150 and 100% the item price is doubled.

sales cut income happens as the sims make purchases.  the more purchases
being made the more money you will get over time.  be careful with this
income.  if you are getting a lot of sales cut income during the month
you may be tempted to overspend.  if your rent income is not enough
to counter act your outgo then you could end up facing bankrupcy.
just be careful in the begginning and try to not overspend.

for stores their income is based entirely on the amount of sims that enter
their store and have enough cash to purchase the item.  (if you watch the
sims closely you will notice that there is a delay between an item purchased
and when it is recorded, the purchase will not be recorded until the sims 
has left the store.

your outgo (opposite of income) is determined by many factors.

salary:  the more employees you have the higher the salary payments you must
make.  salary and upkeep are the two most draining outgos to worry about.

upkeep:  just like a shop pays rent you pay upkeep on each unit type you have 
built (even if a store is not in the unit you still must pay upkeep for it).
think of upkeep as providing water, power, phone utilities, store stock and
clerk salaries to run the store.  upkeep is based on the following:

single     10x9 = 90/month
wide/deep  10x18 = 180/month
department 10x36 = 360/month
     (with mall manager upkeep is reduced by 1 per tile)
     (with Insulated walls upkeep is reduced by 1 per tile)
     (with solar panels upkeep is reduced by 2 per tile)
     (all above research is cumulative for a a total of -4 to upkeep/tile)

so long as the store which occupies the unit has rent set to its upkeep amount
you will not have to worry about upkeep costs (but you wont make a profit
either).  the default rent for a store is equal to the current upkeep cost
per tile.

next is construction costs.  this is of course variable depending on how much
you build from month to month.

then advertising costs (we will disscuss this more in the MALL RATING section).

the research costs.  once research is complete the total costs will always
be the same:  $559,000 for all research!!!

finally loan repayment.  loans are a little complicated to explain so i will
suggest that you learn loans through doing.  if you follow my suggestions in
this FAQ then you should never have to worry about taking out a loan.  of
course a true mall tycoon will learn to take advantage of everything this
game has to offer and use it to his best advantage.

right click on any of your stores and you will get a submenu that details 
that store.  on the left side of the submenu you will see a three dimensional 
rotating picture of the store.  on the right you will see a chart with numbers.

[a row goes across and column goes up and down]

the first column shows the stores figures for the current month which are
constantly being updated (so long as the game is unpaused)
the second row shows the cumulative figures for the current year.
and the third column shows the cumulative figures for the store since it was

the first row shows the stores total income
the second row shows the profit the store has made  (income minus rent)
the third row shows the total number of shoppers that have visited that store.

below the chart are two sliding scales:  the pink tag is the sales cut scale, 
the open book is the rent scale.

to the right of the scales are the item price and the green check mark and red

there are other features in this menu but they are unimportant to income (as 
far as I know).

the default settings for the sliding scales are: sales cut = 0 %, and
rent = upkeep cost for the unit.  the important thing to realize about rent is 
that it is the amount of money that the store must pay for each tile that
it occupies.  so a single will cost $90 rent per month ($10 x 9 tiles).
rent will be deducted from a store at the start of every month, sales will
come over the period of the month as customers arrive.

it has been brought to my attention by various readers of my FAQ that
the store is indeed owned by a sim.  The store profits go to that sims
personal savings and after a while of profit making the store owner will
retire and give you a nice bonus (about 5k) as a thank you for giving him
an early retirement.  at which time the store will be deleted.
i prefer not to let a store make profit since his
profit is my loss.  yes it is evil in a way, but, he is only a sim, what
could he possibly do with the money?  i have a mall to run after all!



For now keep the rent and sales cut at default.  make sure all stores are
at the default settings and then put the game on play (whatever speed you 
feel comfortable with).  after 6 months game time pause the game.  right 
click on any store and check its total profits (the last column second row).
if total profits is 1K or greater then set sales cut to 100 % and rent to $10 
(regardless of default setting).  follow these steps for all stores in your 
mall.  if any store has not achieved 1k in profits by the 6th month then 
do nothing to that store.


let the game run for another 6 months.  then check all stores again.  if you 
placed your stores well and designed your mall well then all stores should be 
at the 1k total profit mark after one year.  


now the goal is to totaly optimize each individual store for maximum income.
at this point there is no "time limit" to check stores.  you simply check each
store when you feel the need to.  what we are checking for is either an
increase in total profits, a decrease, or no change.

so long as sales cut is 100 % and rent is $10 and there is no change in total
profit (give or take a few dollars over time)  then the store is optimized 
and is making money for you.

if the stores total profits are declining then it is possible that the store
is in a bad place, the mall design is flawed, the mall rating or crowd level 
is too low or there's two stores next to each other that dont mesh well.  first 
try reducing the rent to 0 and sales cut still at 100.  then let it run a
while.  when total profits reach 1k agian put it back to rent of 10.  if
store is still having trouble then delete it and try a different store or
delete it and try adding some objects or a special addition to increase 
mall rating and to attract new customers.

if the stores total profits are increasing this is a great sign!  follow
the following chart to optimize the income from this store.  (sales cut
should always be at 100 %):


         1K                           10
         5K                           20
        10K                           30
        15K                           40
        20K                           50

it is a good idea not to charge over 50 for rent (unless the store is just
raking in the dough like crazy).  of course you can always experiment and see
what works for you.

if at any time you have rent set to 20 or more and the store starts to 
constantly lose profit then reduce the rent by 5.  this should keep the
store profit stable and a store that has these settings and no additional 
profits is optimized for best income.  generally, once a store is optimized
it can operate indefinately without supervision.  but a good manager will
always check in from time to time just to be sure.


at this point all your stores should be well on their way to making you rich
(or at least financially stable).  now we must find out if the mall itself 
is making $$.

go to your main menu in the upper left corner, click the brown case, then click
the stack of money.  this is a very important screen.  get to know it well.  
if you spend a few minuets looking over it you will understand it.  this is
an itemized list of all income and expenses your mall is going through.  for 
beginners hit the button on the right side that has an open calendar on it.
this will list all your income and expenses for the current month.  when a new 
month begins look at the figures on the left side so long as all those figures
are in the positives before the new month is over then you are making money.



if you are not making money and all your stores are optimized then you need to
find out what the problem is.  if your mall is new then chances are you have 
too many employees or too many expensive employees.  your rent income should
more than cover your maintenance income, and your sales cut should be surpasing
your salary.

if your mall is older and more established then perhaps you are 
advertising too much (try cutting down on different types of adds until you
notice a loss of crowd level), or maybe you have a large loan payment to make.
if it is the loan payment then try to wait until it is paid off then determine 
if you are making money.

in our example mall, after about 5 game years you should have a decent mall
going (without expansions).  you should be making about 1k-3k per month.  it
does not sound like a lot but it is a small starter mall so dont expect too 

other strategies to consider:

knowing that sales cut affects the item price and thus affects your sims you
should be careful about what kind of sims are attracted to your mall.  setting
high prices will attract rich sims while low prices will attract poor sims.  
to get your rich sims to stay you must have a high mall rating to keep them
there long enough to get all there money.

     [F]  MALL RATING:

So far in this document "mall rating" has been mentioned 20 times!  i guess it
must be important...!

IT IS!  High mall rating ensures that your mall is desireable by the local
populace which not only means that you get "free advertising" by word of mouth
but when sims arrive they want to stay and are more likely to spend more.  also
mall rating can be used to determine how well you are doing at managing your

all malls have 2000 mall rating points to work with.  The bar graph in the
submenu will not tell you your exact number of points so you just have to 
go with a percentage approxamation. This number is useful though when planning
out objects and special additions to your mall.  unless you have a grand
vision there is no point in over indulging your mall with unneeded objects.

your mall rating will start at a level determined by the difficulty level
you specifiy in the free build option screen.
easy - about 55%
medium - about 50%
hard - about 45%

0% - 24%	= local citizens consider your mall an eyesore

25% - 49%	= your mall is generally disliked

   50% 		= your mall is average

51% - 74% 	= your mall is generally liked

75% - 100% 	= local citizens condsider your mall superb 

oddly enough it is more difficult to lower mall rating than it is to increase
it.  this is a good thing though, it makes your job easier.  just for 
the sake of completeness, i was only able to get an eyesore mall by
starting on hard difficulty (no crime at all), then building lots of stores
and lots of objects to attract lots of people.  then when all the people
had completely trashed my mall with litter, i deleted all the objects
and my mall rating plummeted to 0.  all the people left and i was left with
a landfill!  it still took me 6 years to get a 0 mall rating and i was
trying to get it.

so you have an average mall?  lets change that!

          [1]  OBJECTS:

Objects are essential to mall rating.  No one likes to spend money, including
sims.  But, if your sims have objects to look at, play with and interact
around then they can become distracted and are thus not thinking about all the 
money they just wasted on that new pair of high priced speakers from Sounds

Thanks to J-F Bilodeau (one of my many readers) i now have access to the code
(well most of the it) and can give information about specific values to 
mall rating for different objects.  as it turns out some higher priced objects
do not give more mall rating.  although, similarly priced objects are generally 
equal in mall rating.

Also, every object's and special addition's mall rating is cumulative.
so, if you have 4 columns in your mall you would have a bonus of 20
(mall rating of 5 each times 4 columns) added to your current mall rating.
as a general rule of thumb for most objects, the mall rating bonus is 
equal to the objects cost/100.  thus an object costing 1k will give a bonus
of 10 to mall rating.  this is not true of all objects but is for most.

also, objects can be located anywhere in the mall and in any order or fashion.
the sims dont care how the objects are laid out only that they are present.

0. General Format
item name: number of items in this catagory : price of each item :
	 : size of item : pre-requisite research : special care :
	 : mall rating: :
notes on item class.

Your objects are located under the red case button, then under the bench

1.  stairs
stairs   : 3 : 1k, 1.5k, 2k : 4x1 : (D)			  : n/a	   : 4,6,8	
escalator: 2 : 2.5k         : 4x1 : (Engineer->escalators): repair : 10,12
elevators: 2 : 4k, 6k       : 2x1 : (Engineer->lifts)     : repair : 16,24

you must build a second floor BEFORE placing a set of stairs.
escalators allow your sims to travel without getting tired but you need a 
set of escalators for every floor and an engineer to fix them.  
one elevator however will work for all 10 floors but still needs an engineer.
also notice here that there are two escalators for 2.5k each but one gives
more mall rating.

2.  entrances : 12 : 100 : 2x2 : (D) : N/A : 0

these are needed to allow sims into your mall.  if you dont have any a message
will prompt you to build at least one.  these can only be placed on outside
walls, however, if you build one on an outside wall and later expand the
old entrance will remain until you delete it (i think it looks nice as a 
seperater between sections of the mall).

3.  benches : 6 : 350 		     : 1x1 : (D) : N/A    : 3
4.  tables  : 5 : 250 		     : 1x1 : (D) : N/A	  : 2
5.  columns : 6 : 550 		     : 1x1 : (D) : N/A	  : 5
6.  phones  : 4 : 300, 400, 500, 1k  : 1x1 : (D) : repair : 4
7.  kiosks  : 5 : 450 		     : 1x1 : (D) : N/A	  : 4

kiosks are small areas where sims can get pamphlets and look at posters for 
information.  here we have 4 phones of differing price but all give a 
mall rating of 4.

8.  signs : 10 : 150 : 1x1 : (D) : N/A : 1

signs give info on the location of other objets like phones, restrooms, etc.
although i dont really think the sims every read the signs :P

9.  trash cans  : 6 : 200, 300, 350, 400 : 1x1 : (Cleaner->trash cans) :
		: N/A : 2

these seem to reduce the amount of litter generated by the sims.

10. maps : 5 : 350 	    : 1x1: (Designer->maps)	: N/A    : 3
11. ATMs : 4 : 500, 800, 1k : 1x1: (Mall Manager->ATMs) : repair : 5

these allow your sims to access their bank accounts and thus can spend more
money.  however, i have never really observed a sim using it.
the bank is the only place that i am certian that a sim can gain more
money to use in your mall.

12. lights 	: 5  : 600	: 1x1 : (Designer->lights)  
		: repair : 6

13. sculptures  : 5  : ~1k, ~1.5k, ~2.5k, ~5k, ~10k : 1x1 
		: (Designer->sculptures) 
		: N/A    : 10, 15, 25, 50, 100

14. rides 	: 6  : 1k	: 1x1 : (Designer->rides)   
		: repair : 10

15. flowers 	: 10 : 300	: 1x1 : (Gardener->flowers) 
		: water  : 3

16. shrubs 	: 5  : 1k	: 1x1 : (Gardener->shrubs)  
		: water  : 10

17. trees 	: 10 : 700	: 1x1 : (Gardener->trees)   
		: water  : 7

18. cactus 	: 5  : 500, 1k  : 1x1 : (Gardener->cactus)  
		: water  : 5, 10

19. tropical 	: 5  : 1.5k	: 1x1 : (Gardener->tropical)
		: water  : 15

20. security cameras 
		: 1  : 1k 	: 1x1 : (Security Guard->security camera)
    		: repair : 10

21. fountains 	: 8  : 1k, 2.5k : 1x1, 2x2 : (Designer -> fountains) 
		: repair : 10, 25

22. landscaping : 4 : 25 : 1x1 : (Gardener -> landscaping)
		: N/A    : 0

this is actually a really expensive form of floor tile.  however, if an object
is already placed then you cant landscape, but, you can place another object
on top of landscaping.  (does not require maintenance).

          [2] SPECIALS/ADD ONS:

this section covers items that are as big as a store but provide no income.  
they really help with mall rating and some provide other benifits as well.
Specials and add ons require no maintenance or upkeep, but can affect
shoppers in different ways just like a shop can.

0.  General Format
	: number of items : cost : size : research : mall rating
	: MC : FC : MT : FT : MA : FA : MO : FO

1.  atriums : 6 : 1.5k : 8x8 : (Designer -> atriums) : 10
	: affects all shoppers to same :

these are the largest things in the game.  these are essential to gaining a 
high mall rating.  when you have an atrium you can do mall promotions (which 
will be covered later).  these are best used as a center piece of the mall.
they can only be placed on the first floor.

2.  services   : 5 : 
small restroom : 300 : 1x1 : (Sani Eng - Restrooms) 	 : 1
	30	30	30	30	40	40	70	70

large restroom : 500 : 2x1 : (Sani Eng - restrooms) 	 : 2
	30	30	30	30	40	40	70	70

Child playroom : 1050: 3x3 : (Pub Relat- Child playroom) : 4
	70	70	0	0	0	0	0	0

Customer Advice: 1050: 3x3 : (Pub Relat- Customer Advice): 4
	0	0	30	30	40	40	50	50

Bank           : 1050: 3x6 : (Mall Mgr - Bank)		 : 4
	0	0	40	40	70	70	50	50

the bank is essential to a thriving mall.  if the mall rating is high enough
then sims wont want to leave.  if they spend all of their money then they are 
taking up space.  banks give sims a chance to gain more money and thus spend
more money.

3.  restaurants : 4 : 
italian : 1.5k : 4x5 : (Mall Mgr - restaurants)   : 2
	0	0	40	40	60	60	40	40

chinese : 2k   : 4x5 : (Mall Mgr - restaurants)   : 3
	0	0	40	40	60	60	40	40

bar     : 1.5k : 3x4 : (Mall Mgr - restaurants)   : 2
	0	0	40	40	60	60	40	40

cafe    : 5k   : 3x5 : (Marketing- internet cafe) : 5
	0	0	60	60	60	60	20	20

these will attract like and act like restaurants except they make you no
money.  they will provide competition for your money making food places.  they
are expensive for the sims but fill up their appetites put smiles on their 
faces (if they had faces) and wake them up so they feel refreshed.

4.  entertainment : 3 : 
bowling alley : 5k  : 6x9 : (Mall mgr - bowling alley)	: 15
	40	40	70	40	60	0	0	0

cinema        : 7.5k: 5x6 : (Mall mgr - cinema)		: 20
	0	0	60	60	50	50	40	40

arcade        : 2k  : 2x3 : (Mall mgr - arcade)		: 5
	40	40	70	0	30	0	0	0

sometimes a sims needs a break from all the hard shopping they are doing.  
these provide rest and entertainment so the sims can get back out there and
shop some more.


1.  keep the floor clear of all litter and research the graffiti remover.
    the janitor is the fastest and most efficient sweeper.
2.  lower crime rate to 0 and make sure all entrances are covered by guards.
    researching all the security topics through metal detectors
    and using Security Guards is enough for the default settings.
3.  when you can afford it use greeters with free gifts and public relations
    officers to walk the floor.  about 2 of each per floor should be plenty.
4.  with all the research topics finished your mall rating will be a minimum
    of 75%.  although the 559k is pretty steep.


simply put, crowd level is the ratio between the number sims in your mall
versus the maximum that can be in your mall at once (which we will call the 
crowd cap).

crowd cap is determined by number of stores and nothing more.  each store will
increase your crowd cap by 5.  thus 12 stores (from our example mall) can
potentially hold 60 sims.  this does not mean that 60 sims show up right away, 
only that 60 is the most the the mall can have walking around at any given 

it is important to note this again.  Criminals count toward your crowd cap.
losts of ciminals means few sims.  this is why it is essential to keep crime
to a minimum.  oh and to keep the criminals from robbing you blind!

you have a few options to help you increase your crowd size.

the obvious method is to increase mall rating, but if your mall is small or you
just finished expanding then using objects may be too expensive. the 
solution is to advertise.

there are four forms of advertising:  newspaper, billboard, television, and 
atrium promotions.

to begin advertising you click on the brown case button, then on the little
explosion button.  this will bring up the advertising screen.

on the left side you have your four options (although you need to build an
atrium before you can use an atrium promotion).  to begin advertising
click on the form of advertising you want and then go to the calender portion
of the menu and click on every month in which you want to use that kind of 
advertising.  do the same with the other forms of advertising if you wish.
if you want to stop advertising then click on the x'ed out version of the form
of advertising and then click on all the months you wish to stop advertising.

for atrium promotions you have your choice of 12 different types. each is unique
and costs quite a bit.  you can choose to have the same promotion year round
(christmas in july anyone?) or set up your promotions based on time of year
and holidays.  when the particular month comes around in which you have a
promotion going on you can see what happens in the atrium!

               [CHART 5] TYPES OF ADVERTISING:

newspaper            100
billboard            150
television           200
mall oasis           500
tv station promo     500
car show             600
circus show          600
fashion show         700
world food promo     700
internet marketing   750
snowboarding         750
baseball team        800
st pattys day        800
easter               850
4th of july          850
halloween            900
thanksgiving         900
christmas            950

I have no evidence even with experimentation that more expensive promotions
work better.  do your own experiments and see what happens.


there are myriad possibilities for expansion so let your mind and talent
go wild.  but, before you go too wild let me give you some points to consider.

if you expand up and not out you will save a ton of money.  the reason...
since there are no entrances on the second floor or above you dont need to 
hire any security staff!!  thats right, no more security salaries to worry 
about.  you will still need janitors, and possibly engineers and gardeners, but
if you were making a profit on the first floor with all of that and guards
you should make even more profit on the second floor with no gaurds.

another idea to consider is that if you expand outward and not upward, sims
will have to travel through the expansion to get to the established stores.  
if they spend all their money on the way then they have nothing for the older
stores.  this will affect those stores optimization levels so all those old
stores need to be reworked at least until you get your crowd level back up to 

the next tip seems obvious.  dont expand too fast.  do a little at a time, and
let the crowd level catch up to your new stores.  try to keep track of which 
stores are optimized and which ones need to be watched closely.  remember, once
a store is truly optimized it no longer needs to be watched nearly as often.

and finally, plan ahead!  if you have to, get out a sheet or two of graph paper
draw some blue prints of what you want your final mall to look like.  it will


this section will cover some ideas which seem on the surface to be cheating but
really are just exploiting some loopholes which the designers and programmers
may have overlooked.  well ok, i guess that is cheating! :P

[I]  Pushing Mall Rating and How to get spotless floors without a janitor:

sims and employees can walk through objects like they weren't there.  most
objects only take up 1 square.  litter cannot be dropped in a square that has 
an object.  the idea:  fill every available square with an object (especially
ones that dont need repair or watering.  with all the objects, 
no litter can be dropped, and the sims will continue shopping
uninterrupted.  the only places you may find litter will be at the front door 
of each store since you cant place objects there.  thats ok, a few pieces
of litter cant compete with row after row of 10k sculptures!  not only that, 
if you dont have any janitors then the only employees you really need are 
the security guards on the first floor, and the rest is candy...  of course
having objects every where may not make for the best looking mall, but if you
use things like columns or tables and chairs then it may not look so bad.

[J]  Pushing the crowd level cap and doubling income:

each store gives 5 more potential shoppers to your mall.  when you expand
you will add stores and thus increase the cap, but the density (the amount of
foot traffic in the mall) will still be the same.  thus expanding will give
more profit but only a little bit more.  to increase the density of shoppers in 
your mall and thus increase foot traffic and thus income potential do the 

build a seperate building off in a far corner somewhere.  do not add any
entrances (no way in so sims will ignore it).  build one or two department
units.  fill the units up with choco heavens or something cheap.  set each
store to 0 sales cut and 0 rent.  the store will never go bankrupt since you
are charging it no rent.  but the extra stores you just built will attract
5 more sims each (2 department units = 40 more sims).  those extra sims will 
go for the other stores since the new ones are closed off.  this means that
you have 40 more sims then you should shopping in your old stores.
this then means 40 more sources of income.

you only need to do this trick to the point that it would double
your base crowd cap.  in our example we have a crowd cap of 60 people.  
so we build 3 department units with stores and make our new cap 120 thus
doubling our income.  if you try to attract more than that it will be
difficult and not worth the extra advertising to try.  this will help relieve
the stress of expanding the main mall since each new store there also 
increases the cap and with the increased density it has no choice but to 
spill over into the new area.

the only disadvantage here is the increased maintanence costs.  but, if your
original stores are already optimized then this should not be a problem 
(especially if you have researched the mall manager, insulated walls, and 
solar panels).

[K]  INFINITE $$$:

this one is for all you guys out there that have a thirst for money and power

open a new map.  fill the map with floor tiles.  add one entrance.  use the 
wall tool to build a small enclosure around the entrance on the inside 
(we do this to prevent the computer from giving us a message every two seconds
about not having an entrance and to prevent criminals from stealing).  
now fill the floor with department units.  only do about half 
the floor for now (since to fill the entire floor would cost more
than you start with.)  now add choco heavens to all the units.  set all the
stores to 100 rent.  set the speed to max and wait three months.

what will happen:  each unit will charge you 360 in upkeep, each unit of stores
will give you 3600 rent for a profit of 3240 per month.  just 10 units like 
this is over 32k profit a month.  the stores will all go bankrupt in 3 months.

thats ok.  fill them up with choco heavens again (they are the cheapest store
to build) and do it all over agian.  we use departments because they are
cheaper than 4 singles and reduce the time it takes to set rent by 4 (since we
set rent for one and it sets it for the other 3).

now take into account 2k for reperchasing the stores every three months:
3240 x 3 - 2000 = 7720 profit every three months.

the more departments you have the more you make.

in under 2 game years i was able to raise my available money to over 

there is a slight dissadvantage to this.  it takes a lot of tedious work to 
set the rent for every store and replace all the stores every three game 
months.  also the games message buffer will get very full of messages saying
that choco heaven is failing and choco heaven is bankrupt as well as telling
you that criminals are in the mall and so on.  to make this less annoying
turn of the sound effects.  when you have enough money (if that is possible :)
save the game, exit out, then reload the game.  that should clear the message
buffer.  remember not to demolish your mall with the level building site button.
just delete it all manually or you may have some extra upkeep to pay for
which you really dont have.

this trick can be used at any time in the game with little to no drawbacks.

need some extra cash to expand but dont want to take out a loan?  build a
little area off to the side with no entrance (or a secret floor with no stairs)
and extort the heck out of it.  seems mean but hey your the boss!


What better way to get what you want than to change the very rules of the game!

You need to go into your directory/file system to find the main game files which
were downloaded to your computer when you first installed the game.  you will
also need a spread sheet program like microsoft excel.

also, a good point of advice, before changing any game files make sure to save a
copy of the original just incase you mess something up.  either that, or you 
may have to re install the game.

the directory we want is:

Program Files/Global Star Software/Mall Tycoon 2/models

here we find many more directories most of which we dont care about.  the
directories of interest are:


The first directory is objects.  here we find directories containing information
about all the objects in the game.  open any one of the directories and look
for a .csv file.  open it with your spread sheet program (i used microsoft 
excel) and you should see nicely laid columns and rows each with a heading
telling you what the information is.  there will be many columns which we dont
want to touch.  the main columns of importance are:
mall rating
damage type

you can set mall rating and cost to whatever you like just dont use negative
numbers and try not to go above 2000 on the mall rating.

damage type refers to what is needed to repair the object.
a 0 means that it needs no repair, a 1 means that it needs a handyman or 
engineer, and a 2 means that it needs a gardner.  do not put any other numbers
in this area.

the next directory is people which contains criminals, shoppers and staff.  dont
mess with the criminals since they are easily dealt with anyway (by setting the 
free build crime rate to 0).  

the file shoppers.csv contains information about the behavior of each type of
sims.  unfortunately i have not yet deciphered this information so leave it 
alone for now unless you like to experiment.

the important folder here is staff which contains main, person, and security.
each of these folders contains a .csv file with information about each 
particular employee (like wages, area of responsiblity, and skill) and 
another .csv file containing research trees.

the only columns i recommend changing here are 
research cost 
research time
also dont set research time below 1 or there will be graphic
glitches in the research submenu during game play.

next on our list we have shops.  under this folder we have a set of folders
each containing information about the different shop types.
when you open a .csv file for a shop type you will see many many columns and
rows of numbers here.

the only columns i suggest changing here are:
shopper effects (male child, female child, etc.)
unit price
shop price
shop funds
store name

finally the last folder is spec.  this contains the info on the specials and 
add ons.

the only information i suggest changing here in the particular .csv files are:
mall rating
shopper effects
tool tip

that is all i have for now about hacking the game.  of course with this level of
cheating (or control) the game really loses its challenge.  but to each his own!
my job here is to give all the information.  it is your job to read it, 
understand it, and use it how you wish.


Contributed by Cassidie  -  deleting or adding an object when a mall employee 
is in the same square will automaticaly and permanently delete (fire) that 
employee.  this will also work with customers and criminals (although 

Contributed by Allison - I'm reading your mall tycoon 2 guide (because I've 
had the game for about a week and *always* go bankrupt) and came across the 
part about mall rating never going below 50%.  one of my malls was generally 
disliked by the public (i didn't look at the rating but i guess that's below 
50%) and i think maybe yours didn't go below 50 because there were no stores 
for the sims to visit since the one you had was blocked by a wall.  maybe it 
only goes down if a lot of sims visit and dislike it, but none visited yours 
because the shop was inaccessible. I think they didn't like or dislike it 
since they had never been there.  
Also, it said that shop profits go toward 
nothingness, but I had been running a mall for 10 years or so (taking 50% 
sales cut or something like that i think) and it said the owners of 
two of my stores had made enough money to retire, and thanked me with 
$5000 each, then the stores closed.  I guess i probably would have made 
more than 5k if i was taking 100% profit the whole time but it still was 
a kind of happy fuzzy feeling that a sim store owner could retire and 
thanked me :p

Contributed by saturnofearth - this reader wanted to know how to rotate
the units. so i replied with the following information.
how to rotate the boutique - hit the right mouse button or the comma or 
period keys on the keyboard.

Contributed by J-F Bilodeau - this reader brought to my attention all the 
spread sheet information located in the data files of the game itself.
this then lead to my creating of the second version.

Contributed by all my readers - I give much thanks and appreciation to 
all people who read my FAQ.  I hope all who read it find it useful and 
truthful.  I challenge all who read it to find fault in my findings or 
information which may be missing from my work.  Please let me know if 
such items are discovered by contacting me at:

Copyright all rights reserved 
Version 1.00 September 2003,
Revised Version 2.00 October 2004.

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