MiniTown – build your city on a floating island in this cute Tycoon game
May 17, 2012 12:27 PM –
MiniTown is a cute city-building tycoon game which takes place on a floating island. Create your city from the ground-up, building houses, farms, buildings, shops and more. Later on in the game you can even make your own airships! Supported through the HeyZap social gaming platform, it’s a game that will surely be downloaded by CityVille and FarmVille fans eager for Android equivalents.
Price: Free, plus Optional In-game Purchases
Tested on: HTC One X
Pros & Cons:
- Cute graphics!
- Lots of scope to grow and expand!
- Lots of buildings, businesses, etc. to build!
- Very restrictive depending on your level.
- The HeyZap integration is a little intrusive.
- Quite low playability threshold (i.e. you need to buy in-game credits to make substantial progress).
- Often freezes and not always very responsive.
MiniTown presents you with your very own floating island. On this island you can build and tycoon your way to growth and expansion, keeping your little people happy and increasing your levels. The HeyZap social options allow you to share and compare with friends. There is lots to do as well. There are over 100 building types to create, 50 or more products to make, 30 different citizen types and over 40 levels of progress. It’s a good platform to build upon and fans of the genre will probably enjoy the choice-range.
We have seen hundreds of tycoon apps in the Google Play Store and most operate on freemium basis. That is, it’s free to download, but if you want to to make much progress you need either patience or real money to invest in the game. Whenever I review these apps I always bring up what I refer to as the ‘threshold‘. This is the amount of gameplay you get before you get slowed down by waiting for energy to renew, crops to grow, money levels to establish and so on. I found MiniTown relatively average in this regard. You probably get a good 20 minutes of play before you have to either wait or pay.
The game contains all the kind of things you would expect from a city-building tycoon game, with the only originality coming from the fact that you’re on a floating island. Despite this, however, you can expand outwards- apparently that isn’t a problem if you have the money. Progress is somewhat hampered by weird restrictions- even early in the game. For example you are only allowed 2 cottages before a certain level. There’s lots of these restrictions and they tend to smother the game pointlessly.
My overall feelings towards MiniTown is that we have seen this kind of things before, over and over again. There’s very little in the way of originality and the gameplay, while cute, it isn’t particularly inspiring. If you’re already part of the HeyZap network and like these kind of titles, this might be something you try out, but there are far better tycoon games out there. Off the top of my head, Game Insight’s My Country and Rock the Vegas are better games with more options and a higher gameplay threshold.
Watch on Mobile
Minitown – Splash screen
Minitown – Starting small, cottages, barns and bakeries
Minitown – Sometimes screen freezes
Minitown – Regular competitions to win stuff!
Minitown – Easy going tutorial
Minitown – Levels to progress through
Minitown – Information
Like the number of buildings you can create while only on a certain level, fun is decidedly limited… unless of course you want to speed things up and make in-game purchases. I think fans of the genre, looking for a new gaming hit will enjoy the choices here and for such gamers these titles can be a great source of casual fun. For people who just do not get the attraction, and who routinely voice their hatred of FarmVille, this is really not something to bother with.
Again, this has to be split by type of gamer. If you like tycoon games, yes, MiniTown is an addictive and engrossing little game which will keeep you going back for more (to collect crops, or build a barn, etc.) If, however, you ‘just don’t feel it’, it won’t be anywhere near as absorbing.
The graphics are undoubtedly cute; juicy and rich with colour. I did notice that some buttons are a little unresponsive at times and the build menu occasionally freezes which can be frustrating.
Accelerometer, Vibration & Sound:
The sound is good; delicate trinket music and frequent sound effects. Again nothing new, but typical of the genre.