Posts Tagged build
It’s always nice to see something a little different in a market saturated with a bunch of “Me, Too” freemium titles. Chillingo‘s Zooniverse is one such deviation for a couple of different reasons, not just because of the unobtrusive tutorial. Seriously, it’s incredible how many developers think interrupting the player with pop-up boxes is “good.” *deep breaths*
While Zooniverse is about running a zoo first and foremost, it’s also about keeping the customers happy. These core customer demographics are divided into three main categories: men, women, and children. Each group has its own preferences when it comes to facilities and adorable critters to ogle, so it’s important to find a balance that caters to everyone. Making more people happy means more money, and more money means being able to expand the zoo with more enclosures, animals, and just space in general.
A great deal of critters ranging from woodland to aquatic, and even prehistoric and outright impossible, can be housed in the many available enclosures. Once an animal is settled in, be it through a purchase or breeding, players have to make sure to keep it well fed. Starvation won’t result in horrible complex-forming consequences, but it will cause the creatures to stop earning cash. So, you know, don’t be a jerk and keep them well-fed.
The burning question of what happens with a mouse is bred with a hippo (a Hippopotamouse) will finally be answered for free later this summer.
When the squirrel god – god of squirrels? I’m a little fuzzy on the specifics of this particular theology. No pun intended – sees a lone bushy-tailed critter dragging itself through the desert, he bestows it with a special acorn that creates a rather large tree. This tree becomes an oasis and eventual home to other wayward squirrels; constantly growing to make room for even more denizens. It’s similar to Tiny Tower, no doubt, but Chillingo‘s Happy Squirrels is much more than a simple re-skinning of a familiar concept.
As the tree grows and floors are added, players are able to choose what rooms they would like to create from a total of 25 different options. These rooms can earn nuts, the game’s main form of currency, at different rates and with different caps on how much they can hold. Each chamber can also be upgraded up to five times, with each iteration able to earn even more, faster. These munchies can be used to purchase new rooms and otherwise expand the tree. Potions, the other form of “kinda” currency, are needed to speed things up if players don’t feel like waiting X-number of hours for construction to finish. Or they can be exchanged for more nuts. Whatever the situation demands.
What really sets Happy Squirrels apart is its level of interactivity. At any time the iOS device can be jostled or titled in order to make the tree’s occupants jump or slide around, respectively. A number of other cosmetic interactive touches such as doorbells to ring, as well as a couple of acorn-earning mini-games, make it feel like there’s always something to do while waiting for the workers to finish their tasks.
Happy Squirrles will be setting up shop for free sometime this summer.
Everyone’s messed around with building bocks in some form or another at some point in their life. Everyone. It’s kind of a universal thing. Which is a big reason as to why I’m somewhat amazed that very few people have attempted to merge the concept with interactive design. It’s one of those ideas that doesn’t seem obvious until someone comes up with it. And Boldai came up with it.
Blocksworld is, in essence, a set of virtual building blocks. Structures can be cobbled together, tiny people can be crafted, and all manner of impossible creations can appear with a few taps and flicks. But simply creating a thing is only the beginning. Once that mutant frog or towering skyscraper is complete, it can be brought to life or used as an asset in an animated movie or even video game. This is because it’s more than just a sandbox, it’s an incredibly easy to use toolset for creative types.
Any iOS user can open up Blocksworld and create whatever their imagination can come up with. Then they can use it to create their own action movie or turn it into a game, then they can share it with the world on the official website. Or Twitter and Facebook, of course. The tools are rudimentary but the sky is indeed the limit.
Blocksworld is still in beta but is expected to release later this summer. There’s no official word on pricing yet but users will be able to purchase additional content packs (prices also TBD) in order to bolster their creative arsenal.
Holy crap. No, seriously, holy crap. Pixowl Inc, in collaboration with Bulkypix, are poised to unleash something major on the App Store. It might look like a simple toy at first, but make no mistake: The SandBox is packing some seriously intense concepts behind that cute facade.
When The SandBox first caught my attention, I thought it looked like a nifty little pixelated world-building game. In a way, it kind of is. However, I was thoroughly unprepared for just how many different aspects of this created world could be manipulated. Water will flow down hills, erode stone into sand, turn dirt into fertile soil, evaporate in extreme heat and freeze in extreme cold. Flowers and trees can grow. Weather will develop based largely on the environment. Players can even make rudimentary circuits to do anything from heating to creating light.
The SandBox is still very much in beta at the moment, but that’s no reason not to get excited. What’s already implemented is pretty amazing, actually. A lot of specifics are still up in the air, such as the final number of “story” levels (currently around 20), price and release date. It’s kind of a shame because this is all so cool, but then again it’s probably best not to rush things. Although the super-curious or anxious can try to get in to the beta. No guarantees, though. Regardless, be sure to keep an eye out for The SandBox whenever it does hit the App Store.
Microcraft is something of an oddity. It’s a fan-made “remake” of a port of a Notch-made knockoff of one of the most popular indie games of all time. Wow, that was intense.
The game itself functions much like a top-down Minecraft, with a few other key differences. While surviving assaults by vicious monsters and crafting items from wood and stone are still a major factor, there’s not much in the way of building. So while players can (and should) explore the world and create helpful tools and weapons for themselves, they can’t construct a fortress to live in. Kind of a shame, but making something like that from this perspective would undoubtedly be tough to pull off.
With several “mobs” to fight, a number of different environments to explore and a day/night cycle (not to mention all the crafting), I think Microcraft should make for a good time. Whether or not it stays on the App Store for very long is up in the air at this point since it does share many a similarity to Mojang’s runaway train of a game, as well as Notch’s Ludum Dare spin-off, but I’d like to think that it’s different enough to earn a permanent place among the other hundreds of thousands of titles up there.