Yes, it’s that time again – time to go back to Candywriter’s uber-popular life simulator game for iOS and Android gamers and take a look at yet another BitLife update. The developer really hit it big with BitLife, which still tops the app charts to this day and regularly gets updated with new features. And since the last update focused on work-related tweaks despite its ostensible “back to school” theme, we’re not surprised – and we’re actually quite pleased – that version 1.23 is all about campus life.
BitLife version 1.23 is quite a hefty update, and we aren’t kidding when we are saying that it has a ton of new features. It’s clear that Candywriter tried to pack as many new elements as possible to make school life for your Bitizens as realistic as possible, and they’ve delivered and then some. So with that said, let’s get started with this BitLife school update guide as we will explain some of the new features of the game such as grades and popularity, cheating on tests, school bullying, messing with classmates, student-teacher interactions, college life plus many more! Stick with us and we will help you get an A in terms of maximizing each and every new feature on the “It’s Time to Get Rowdy in School” update.
BitLife School Update Overview: It’s All About Grades And Popularity
Once your Bitizens reach the age of 5 or so (it may vary depending on their country of origin), they will be able to start going to school. Your student Bitizens will be evaluated based on two things for as long as they’re studying – Grades and Popularity – and it’s your duty to keep these two at a high level. (Or choose not to, if you’re chasing a ribbon with a negative connotation or simply want to play around.) Both stats will start out pre-filled at certain levels – generally speaking, Grades will be initially based on a Bitizen’s Smarts stats, while Popularity is based on a variety of factors.
A Bitizen with well below-average Looks or Smarts, for instance, may start school with their Popularity at orange, but start out with the bar close to full if they’re blessed with both stats in abundance. Poor Looks and great Smarts, on the other hand, could hint at early unpopularity, as such a combo fits the classic movie and TV stereotype of the average nerd.
Both Grades and Popularity could go up or down organically based on all four core stats, so it’s essential that you keep your characters happy and healthy, while also behaving well and using the Study Harder option when needed, in order to fill those bars up. Regardless whether you’re in your first year of elementary school or your final year in graduate school, Grades and Popularity matter, so take care of these two stats if you’re trying to make your Bitizens live their best life!
Dealing With Classmates: Don’t Be A Bully If You Want To Be Popular
When it comes to maintaining Popularity in BitLife, the one thing you need to keep in mind is that picking on other children will definitely compromise your Popularity stats! You can see your class list by tapping on School, then on the name of your school, then on the Class sub-menu.
When interacting with your classmates, you have six possible interactions to choose from – Compliment, Conversation, Flirt, Gift, Insult, and Mess. Ideally, the first two options are what you want to focus on when building positive relationships with other students, though it’s not a guarantee they will be receptive. For example, if your Popularity is rather low (you could start out in the orange levels if your Bitizen wasn’t born with a lot of Looks and/or Smarts), popular kids likely won’t give you the time of day or won’t be too appreciative in most cases.
Flirt, on the other hand, is best used once your character (and the other NPC Bitizens) are old enough to start dating and declare their sexuality – otherwise, it’s a rather big gamble. Gift can only be used if you’ve inherited money as a next-generation Bitizen or earned some cash via a freelance gig or part-time job – like the first three interactions, your classmates’ reception would largely depend on your Popularity, or lack thereof.
It’s the latter two interactions (Insult = verbal abuse, Mess = physical bullying or pranks) that you want to avoid to build up Popularity – unless, of course, you’re trying to make your Bitizen as despicable as possible from a young age. Insulting or Messing with classmates automatically zeroes out your Relationship bar with the classmate in question, and that too takes its toll on your overall Popularity as you keep picking on your peers.
Worse, students may choose to fight back and attack you if they’re especially insulted by your taunting or pranking! (Sadly, your Bitizens may also die if they are in poor Health once attacked by a classmate in retaliation for one of these acts of bullying.
It’s not just a drop in Popularity or possible injury that you need to be wary of if you’re trying to act like the resident bully or mean girl – your classmates could snitch on you and report you to your school’s principal/headmaster, thus introducing you to a whole new world of trouble! We’ll discuss the principal’s office in a later part of this guide, but let’s move on first to another aspect of school life – your teachers.
Student-Teacher Interactions Can Affect Both Grades And Popularity
BitLife version 1.23 made sure to make the educational experience as realistic as possible, and has done so, among other ways, by giving your Bitizens multiple educators to interact with – in elementary school, this would include your class’ teacher, your music and PE teachers, and your principal/headmaster, and in junior high and high school, you’ll be dealing with teachers for various subjects along with your principal/headmaster.
In college, teachers become professors, while principals and headmasters become deans – same roles, with the former imparting knowledge and the latter ensuring discipline. You can easily access this by tapping on the Faculty sub-menu after tapping on School and the name of your school. Regardless of which teacher you’re interacting with, you will again have six options to choose from – Act Up, Compliment, Disrespect, Gift, Insult, and Suck Up.
Clearly, Act Up, Disrespect, and Insult are the options that should be avoided if you want to avoid the principal’s office. The first option allows you to act like the class clown and try to get some laughs out of your classmates, while the second and third are rather similar – Disrespecting a teacher takes things a bit personal as this allows you to criticize your teacher’s ability or to outright swear at them in front of the entire class, while Insulting them is, how shall we say it, more childish than the Disrespect option.
Although either one of these three interactions could all land you in the principal’s office, the upside here is that you may earn your classmates’ respect for standing up against the “big, bad” adults in charge of the school. This doesn’t seem to always be the case, especially if your Popularity is rather low, but messing with teacher is often a good way to get some positive attention from your classmates.
Meanwhile, Compliment, Gift, and Suck Up are three actions that could improve your relationship with your teachers/principal in varying levels, though if you’ve got a history of making trouble in school, they may see through your attempts to curry favor and not be too appreciative.
Most of the time, using these three interactions could improve your grades, which could be very important if you’re trying to keep them high in order to make an athletic team or ensure that you don’t get kicked out of it. But kissing up to the faculty could also have an adverse effect on your popularity – nobody likes a brown-noser, after all!
Random Events: Cheating On Tests, Standing Up To Bullies, And More
Real school life offers a variety of dilemmas – should you keep ignoring that kid who keeps tripping you on the playground or stand up to them, should you cheat on an especially difficult test or risk failure but play it honest, and in relation to that, should you let your classmate copy off of you to help them avoid getting a big, red F? And let’s not forget the age-old dilemma of whether to ditch school and watch a movie/play video games/shoot some hoops/etc.…or stay in class and sit through another boring Math, Science, or Literature lecture.
All these dilemmas are now available in BitLife, thanks to version 1.23 – in the past, your young Bitizens had the choice of standing up to the school bully or not, with only a small chance of expulsion, but now, the possible outcomes are much broader. You could get injured if the bully fights back, and if you get caught fighting, you may end up in the principal or headmaster’s office. Or you could simply report that big brute to the principal and hope they get what’s coming to them. (The latter option has, in quite a few cases, resulted in the bully’s expulsion, so we do recommend this if you want to maintain your Health and Popularity!)
In some cases, you may be asked how to react toward a peer who’s acting up in the classroom – writing dirty words on the blackboard, putting a thumb tack on the teacher’s chair, posting nasty memes to mock another classmate (because after all, this is 2019), you name it. Ignoring the student typically comes without any consequence, but laughing at them to encourage them could get you in trouble with the principal as an “accessory” to the “crime.” You can also choose to lunge at them and attack them to defend teacher’s honor (or your classmate’s honor), but that may decrease your health and again, get you sent to the principal’s office for fighting. Or you could report them to the principal, albeit at the risk of losing Popularity because let’s face it – for most kids, snitching isn’t cool.
Cheating is also covered in great lengths in the new update, as there are some random events where a classmate may ask you to share your answers in a test, or you may stumble upon a crib sheet that could give you easy answers and help you improve your grades. Helping a classmate by letting them copy would improve your relationship with them, and using someone’s answer key could indeed get your grades up a bit. However, both actions come with a potential negative consequence, which is getting caught by the teacher or professor and facing disciplinary action afterward.
Additionally, you may also have a chance to play hooky if invited by a classmate, though you also have the option to do this on your own from middle school onward – simply tap on Skip School to do some ditching for a quick boost of Happiness…and a slight decrease in Grades. In both cases, you may be reported by someone who may have seen you out and about instead of inside the classroom (darned adults), and if that happens, you should know by now what’s coming next – a trip to the principal’s office, which we shall be discussing in the very next part of this guide.
Off To The Principal’s Office You Go…
If you get in trouble in class for messing with a classmate or a teacher, your classmate may snitch on you and your teacher will, in most cases, let the principal or headmaster know about your belligerent behavior toward them. That too applies for random events – say, if you were caught with a crib sheet, caught attacking a school bully, or reported by concerned citizens for playing hooky. Once you’re speaking to your school’s head, you will have the choice to Insult them, Argue with them, or Apologize for your actions.
Apologizing is the best choice if you want to maintain your good grades, but it’ll also take the biggest toll on your Happiness, much like apologizing would do if you were, say, caught two-timing by your partner as an adult Bitizen. Arguing with your principal, headmaster, or dean won’t affect your Happiness as much, but it could make them angrier, especially if you were clearly in the wrong. For the first two options, you may still get detention or serve a suspension of a few days, though you may also get off with a warning and see your grades go down a bit.
Insulting will result in the least negative impact on your Happiness, but that, of course, increases your chances of detention, suspension, or expulsion! Yes indeed, you can now get expelled from school in this new BitLife update, though you will automatically be reenrolled in a new school.
Aside from getting in trouble with the principal for your classroom shenanigans, there’s also a fair chance your mother or father will read you the riot act after hearing from the school about your latest misadventures. (Because why wouldn’t they?) You can either Apologize or Argue with mom or dad in this case, with the former affecting your Happiness drastically but keeping your relationship with your parents healthy…or healthier. Arguing, on the other hand, results in a lower decrease in Happiness but could annoy your parents to the point of your relationship bar going red!
Clubs, Cliques, And Sports Teams
After reaching middle school/junior high, you will have the option to have your Bitizens take part in extracurricular activities or join certain cliques of students. Let’s start with the former, which covers both clubs and athletic teams.
The first thing you’ll notice among the options once you hit the sixth or seventh grade is the option to take up an extracurricular activity. You can join the Art Club, Environmental Club, Photography Club, or even the Skateboarding Club – most of these clubs do not require you to get super-high grades, although in some cases, such as the Glee Club, or (naturally) the Academic Decathlon Club, you’ll need to have your grades at a certain level in order to be accepted.
Otherwise, these clubs are a great way to increase your Popularity, especially if you’re elected as a club officer, and the best thing about them is that you don’t need to put in extra work (e.g. Study/Work Harder) in order to improve your performance. Just take note that you cannot overload your schedule as a student – if you have too many extracurriculars, you will be notified that you have “too much on your plate.”
The same would apply to athletic teams, which may vary depending on your school – whether it’s a major sport like basketball, baseball, or football, or a lesser sport like badminton, gymnastics, or tennis, all possible school sports are covered in version 1.23 of BitLife. You will, however, need to have three things in place to ensure that you make the team – good grades, good health, and good Athleticism. The latter is a special stat that only comes into play when you’re trying out for a sports team, and it appears to be randomized – good looks, for instance, do not seem to play a part in determining a Bitizen’s Athleticism, though we’ve noticed that once you turn 14 and can start going to the gym, it’s possible to improve on this stat a bit.
Once accepted into a team – again, it looks like the game will only allow you to be a two-sport star at most due to the schedule mechanics – you’ll need to choose the Practice Harder option at least once per in-game year in order to improve your performance over time and potentially get named Co-Captain or Team Captain. Just make sure you don’t let your Grades slip or encounter any mishaps that may affect your Health, as both (especially the former) could easily get you booted off the team! (You can also try out again the next year and regain most of your progress, if it’s any consolation.)
Also keep in mind that certain sports (e.g. Cross Country) will require less Athleticism than other sports (e.g. Basketball, Football), so don’t be discouraged if you’ve got average Athleticism and can’t play one of the major sports for your school. (One important note – Candywriter has yet to introduce sports careers, so don’t expect to be drafted by the NBA, NFL, or MLB after excelling as a Team Captain – you’ll still need to get a “real” job!)
As for Cliques, these run the gamut and cover just about every clique you can expect to see on your average campus. Artsy Kids, Brainy Kids, Gamers, Goths, Hipsters, Jocks, Nerds, Popular Kids, Skaters, and Troublemakers – these are just some of the many cliques you can choose from, and each of them have their own specific requirements. For example, joining the Loners would require that you be very unpopular, while becoming one of the Jocks would require two things – you need to be part of an athletic team, but you also should NOT have perfect or near-perfect grades in order to enter. (If your Bitizen excels both in terms of brains and brawn, they’d be better off joining the Talented Kids clique.) Other cliques appear to be club-specific – for instance, you can’t join the Skaters if you’re not part of the Skateboarding Club, and you can’t be one of the Weebs if you’re not in the Anime Club.
Of course, if you’re just an average student who doesn’t excel at anything but doesn’t have any glaring issues either (e.g. not overly unpopular, not a bully or truant), you can join the Normals and contently fade into the background like they often do in real life. Regardless of which Clique you join, though, we haven’t experienced any situation where membership in itself has affected our Bitizens’ Popularity stats, so there is an upside even to joining a Clique such as the Loners.
When joining a Clique, you can either ask the leader for permission to join, immediately invite yourself and start hanging out with the group, try flattering their leader with a compliment, or, if you w ant trouble, insult their leader. The first option is usually the safest option and the second is relatively safe in most cases, but if you get rejected, you’ll still lose about 30 Happiness points in the process, regardless if you ask permission or start hanging out without an invite from the leader.
The third comes with some risks, though it is possible to curry favor with a Clique’s leader and get invited, even if, say, you don’t have the Smarts to be one of the Nerds. The last option would either have you ignored or beaten up by the whole Clique, but if the latter happens, it IS possible to get a boost in Popularity.
College Life: What’s Different After High School?
Once your Bitizens reach their college years, the mechanics will remain pretty similar, but there will be a couple new things introduced into the equation – Fraternities/Sororities, for one, and a couple of new student-teacher (or in this case, student-professor) interactions. While the former are only available in U.S. and Canadian universities, the latter seems to apply regardless of the type of post-high school education you’re taking, may it be University, Graduate School, or any of the postgraduate institutions available, e.g. Business School, Nursing School, Law School, etc.
Although there are several fraternities/sororities you can choose from once enrolled in university, the requirements for joining appear to be very similar – you need to be reasonably popular in order to be initiated, so to say. The hazing, however, does not involve any paddles to the behind or require you to eat weird stuff or play crazy drinking games – in here, it’s as simple as asking you a multiple-choice question about Greek mythology.
If you get a wrong answer, you don’t get accepted and can try your luck again with the other frats/sororities, But then again, Google can be your best friend in situations like this, so you may want to answer these questions while in front of a laptop or desktop PC – or simply toggle windows and use your phone’s browser to Google the correct answer.
While it may seem at first that there isn’t any tangible benefit to being a frat or sorority member aside from a small boost in Popularity, you’ll later discover when your Bitizen is looking for work that some employers will hire you on the spot if they find out you came from the same brotherhood or sisterhood in college. It’s truth in mobile gaming – sometimes, it’s not what you know, but WHO you know, and that can happen with fraternity brothers and sorority sisters.
Talking about interactions with professors and deans, the two new options would be to Flirt with them or to Seduce them, both in hopes of getting a better grade. The former option seems to be a way to mainly improve your relationship with the faculty member in question, but the latter is where things can get interesting. By tapping on each faculty member’s profile, you will see your Relationship bar with them, along with their Looks, Strictness, and Popularity among students. You’ll also see the professor or dean’s sexual orientation, and if you click on the Seduce tab on each educator’s menu, you’ll see if they’re married, divorced, or single.
A successful seduction attempt will give your grades a boost, but we’ve noticed that it’s rather difficult to pull this off – typically, your sexual orientation will have to be compatible, and the educator you’re seducing will need to have low Strictness (ideally a full bar of green for super-lenient professors) and be single or divorced, with your Relationship also being ideally in good shape at that point. In other words, it’s almost a perfect storm of circumstances, so you may be better off hitting the books and hitting the Study Harder tab in order to improve your grades. A failed seduction attempt, on the other hand, could land you in the dean’s office and get you suspended – or even expelled! (Or it may simply be ignored, which would be the best thing that can happen to you in such a case.)
Odds And Ends
BitLife’s new update is so chock-full of school-related content that we decided to discuss some of our miscellaneous observations and shed light on other features that we didn’t cover in the other parts of this guide.
From elementary school to high school, you will have the option to visit the school Nurse, though don’t expect to get a pick-me-up in terms of Health if you happen to have gotten your butt kicked after another schoolyard scrap. If you don’t have any actual illness – as notified by the game – the nurse will check on you, declare that you’re fine, and have you on your way. In other words, it works pretty much like the usual Doctor option you know from previous versions of the game.
You can still choose to Drop Out from school at any point in your academic life, though once again, you can expect resistance from your parents 90 percent of the time. (Unless your Bitizen is particularly lacking up there, in which case, you can drop out successfully more often than not and declare school to be a “waste of time.”)
Thanks to the fact that you can now interact with about a dozen other kids in school, you can now start dating at a younger age (looks like the youngest is 10 or 11), provided you’re in a co-educational school. (In rare cases, you may be enrolled in an all-boys or all-girls school.) Be careful, though, if you choose to flirt with a classmate, because if your partner’s in the same class, that relationship bar could run out real quick!
As noted in the changelog, Candywriter has “overhauled” the intelligence test minigame. At first glance, it looks like the same old test, but this time, you’re now graded in terms of sequences, with the main mechanic remaining the same – simply tap on the colored squares in order after the game taps out a pattern, keep doing so until you’re unable to keep up. But aside from your score coming in the form of a number of sequences as opposed to an IQ score, you won’t get docked significantly in Smarts if you score poorly – you can simply try again in the next year of your Bitizen’s life.
As another miscellaneous addition, the game now allows you to view the global leaderboards, where you can see the day’s top players in terms of Bitizen age, net worth, children, and lovers. So far, we’ve seen some really far-out numbers, with some Bitizens who could easily put Jeff Bezos to shame by amassing a net worth in the HUNDRED TRILLIONS. (We’ve also seen a 148-year-old Bitizen, another with 321 kids, and a third one with 1,822 lovers.) How far can you go in these four categories? The leaderboards are now here to show how just how far.
Lastly, Candywriter, as usual, promises “tons of interface tweaks” with the new update, and one tweak we did notice is that it’s now possible for partners to have kids with other men or women. You could either choose to dump, attack, or forgive your partner in such a situation, and if you choose the latter option, you will become the child’s legal guardian. It’s a rather small wrinkle added to the ever-expanding world of BitLife, albeit one that further ups the ante in terms of the game’s realism. (Word of warning – this COULD happen even if your Bitizen’s partner refuses to have sex before marriage because of their religious beliefs or some other reason!)