Developer: Last Day of Work
Genre: Life Simulation
Release Date: July 2006
- Real-Time Play
- Puzzles have a range of difficulty
- Cute, cartoony graphics
- Ability to pause real-time play
- You'll find yourself wanting to check in on the village
- Real-time play means lots of waiting
- Not always a clear path as to what should be done
- Limited replay vaule
"Virtual Villagers" Features
- "Virtual Villagers" is a village simulation that runs in real-time. While you're away, the villagers are still working hard.
- Breed villagers to keep your village flourishing.
- Research technology to earn points that will help you "buy" new technology in medicine, fertility, and more.
- Solve puzzles as you and your villagers explore the island.
- Scenarios that will wipe out your food and force you to restart building your food stash.
- Start only with a berry bush and discover new ways of getting food.
"Virtual Villagers" Review
"Virtual Villagers" runs in real-time, so even when you are not directly playing and telling the villagers what to do, they continuing researching, breeding, and harvesting crops on their own. Game can be paused through the options menu if you cannot check on the game for a few days.
Within minutes of starting "Virtual Villagers," you'll feel confident playing. The first few hours are critical though, so you'll want to be able to be close to the computer. During this time you need to get the villagers going on research and foraging berries. Once they get started, you won't have to worry so much about them running out of food.
Besides collecting food to live, villagers need to research to earn technology points. The points are used to buy technology (such as: farming, fertility, and medicine) that will help make the lives of villagers easier and more productive. It doesn't take long to research enough to upgrade all technologies.
Villagers can be assigned jobs related to chores on the island (healing, building, breeding, farming, etc). It won't be all they work on. They also spend a lot of doing things that don't help the game at all, like doing laundry. This matters less when there are a many villagers. In the start of the game, though it's a hassle, and you need to watch them to make sure they are getting a decent amount of work done.
There comes a point in the game where there just isn't anything else to do. After the max population is reached, they can take care of themselves well enough. Even the occasion disaster wiping out the food won't affect a large population that knows how to fish. I won't give away the ending, but will say it left me unsatisfied.
"Virtual Villagers" is not a difficult game to master, especially since the villagers will take care of themselves just fine without you. If you take your time exploring and solving the puzzles, it's a worthwhile buy. Don't rush through playing the game on 2X speed or you will feel cheated. "Virtual Villagers" is a good game for those who only have a few minutes to play at a time, like those that typically fire up Solitaire.