Zubon Reviews Random Facebook Games

Just to spite Julian? I have played several, although I am on hiatus from them to see how pointless they feel after a little time away. That pointlessness will probably rate “high,” but then that happens with MMOs, too.

I will put them after the break, to avoid enraging you. Zubon has found a brown cow full of heroin! Join him now!

Most of the Facebook games I have played are from Playfish. My wife introduced me to them (and Facebook), and I saw no reason to spread my information to a bunch of companies that all have their own farms, drug operations, etc.

Word Challenge is one of the few with no rewards for having multiple friends play. It is a straightforward anagramming game. Such as those are, it is good, although the dictionary can be occasionally odd. “Amigos” is an English word, several scientific terms appear, but “mage” is not there. Remember to switch words when you slow down, not when you run out of words. Speed pays.

Restaurant City is probably my favorite Facebook game, because I like having my own little restaurant. It is also simple Achiever stuff, with lots of levels, ingredients, points, and dollars. You are rewarded with cash and points for serving meals. Points level you up for a bigger restaurant, more staff, and a few other features. Dollars buy you decorations and ingredients, and ingredients help you get points. The gameplay is mostly “leave the game running in the background and occasionally give your workers water.” There is a cash shop for decorations and helping you level.

The friends mechanic is odd here. You get a one-time bonus for visiting a new friend, a free ingredient. As a result, there is a bustling trade in temporary friends on the forum: you become Facebook friends, each claim your ingredient, then break up. Inconsiderate people accept your friend request, claim their ingredient, then break up before you get yours. Drama on Facebook? Say it isn’t so!

Pet Society has virtual pets. Dress them up, decorate a house, hug your friends, play the hurdle race mini-game. There is now a fishing mini-game and items to collect. Visit your friends once a day for money and points. There is a cash shop for decorations.

Country Story is their farming game. If you can do simple math, you can work out the strategy of which crops to plant based on how long you will be away. Farms are not terribly dynamic gameplay: click to set everything up, leave for 4-22 hours, harvest and re-plant. Low-pressure stuff for the occasional player. Visit friends to get free materials and to water or steal their crops, with a bonus for the first visit. It has points and cash like Restaurant City and Pet Society.

Crazy Planets is some strange adventure-style game with gameplay vaguely like Worms: walk, pick a gun, fire in an arc at your enemies. It is single-player. The gameplay becomes more interesting in that you are on a small planet/asteroid, so gravity becomes relevant. Visit friends everyday to get materials to upgrade your weapons. There is a cash shop, but I have never checked if it is purely decorative. You can send teams on some missions, so it looks like having friends play and upgrade themselves could benefit you when you use them as crew. Do not play this game.

Leaving Playfish…

Superhero City is somewhat amusing, in the standard vein of “click a few times per hour.” It rewards playing about once an hour. It includes arena PvP, so spend those dollars in their cash shop to get better powers. This has a simple friends mechanic that makes friends vastly overpowered: every friend on your team lets you use an additional set of powers per fight. You get 5 stat points per level, and powers start to be worth 20+ points each, so adding a friend can be worth 10 or 20 levels in the arena. Biggest team wins, plus or minus who has spent the most in the cash shop to buy powers worth 100+ points. Later zones also require larger teams to even attempt missions. Oh, and you can buy more team members in the cash shop, too.

Justice League Unlimited is like a really lousy version of Superhero City. I assume they are not paying for the copyright on all the DC stuff they are using. It also rewards playing about once an hour, although “play” in this sense is “click two or three times.” Having more friends less you do more and level faster. Do not play this game.

Bejeweled Blitz is Bejewled in one-minute increments. You know Popcap, so you know this game. They have some sort of drawing for games and such based on your score, so if you are one of my friends, definitely play this. I can always use a chance at free Popcap games, and you add your friends’ scores to twice yours to see what drawing you qualify for. The game lasts a minute, but it is easy to click AGAIN and keep going for as long as Bejeweled usually sucks you in.

The tips page is odd. First, most of the tips come down to “try to score a lot of points really fast!” Second, they link to someone’s guide, and this person is selling a Bejeweled guide. People pay for tips on raising their Bejeweled scores? And why is Popcap helping this fund-raising effort?

Animal Ranch is yet another farming game, a completely feeble one. Click to place a pet, click the next day to gather something from it. Chickens apparently die after laying eggs once, while you can harvest a hippo multiple times. If you have a friend online, the two of you can powerlevel madly: go to your friend’s farm and throw dirt and flies at all his animals, have him to the same, then each clean your own and repeat. Yes, farming the farm, gaming the game. Luckily, it is a pointless and uninteresting grind, so why bother? There is a cash shop. This is ridiculously annoying in that almost everything prompts a “Share this?” pop-up. Do not play this game.

: Zubon

6 thoughts on “Zubon Reviews Random Facebook Games”

  1. I’ve a friend that gives me crap about paying a monthly sub fee for MMOs yet she finds nothing wrong with spending $20+ a month on Mafia Wars for a chance to get “rare items”.

    My girlfriend plays a few of these Facebook games daily and gets pretty into it. I wonder if I could use these as a way to lure her into an MMO…

  2. Oh hell, as if i don’t spend enough time farting around on the net. I actually stopped reading halfway through your description of the restaurant game, it sounded way to much like something I would obsess on. As the the rest of the article, I will try to go to my grave not knowing.

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