Vivendi Games Mobile released their virtual island game to the App Store last night: Virtual Villagers [App Store]. As one might expect from a major publisher, the game is very well polished and seems to offer a pleasant amount of depth and story-line.

The game starts with castaways landing on a desert island. The game quickly walks you through how to influence the villagers and help them gather food and build shelter. Villagers can be tasked to do a number of chores, including gathering food, building shelter, performing research and more.

Research allows your villagers to build tools and make discoveries that are necessary to further develop their civilization. There also appear to be a number of mysteries on the island that you must uncover. Washed ashore message bottles slowly unravel a story-line from a person named Tito.

Since the game has just been released, we haven't been able to get far in this virtual world, but first impressions are quite positive. Forum readers have been discussing the game and their responses have also been very good.

Unique to this game, however, is that your villagers continue to work, live and play while you are away, so it adds a Tamagotchi-like aspect to it. Fpugirl describes her early experience with the game:

I picked up this game last night and played it for a few hours. This morning I was excited to see that the 3 babies that had been born last night are now in their teens and going to a school that the villagers built. I have unlocked quite a few of the mini games and they are easy at first but increase with difficulty. I also had my first person die this morning. That's when I found out that you need to keep everyone alive, or able to produce, to win/continue the game.

The game has a type of Sims feel to it but it's definitely different in that you can walk away and they keep living (however there is an option to freeze the game, should you be away for more than a few days).

The game also includes simple "mini games" which you can play to accelerate your villager's tasks. Early examples of these include memory games and food gathering games.

While simply watching this game isn't particularly interesting, but this video should give you an idea of gameplay and the overall polish:

The game is available in the App Store for $7.99 and the early response seem to indicate the game is worth it.

App Store Link: Virtual Villagers

  • Booooyaaa

    Wow ... already bought it and its awesome ... playin for about 4 hours now ! great game ...

    sorry for my english i´m from germany ;)

  • Booooyaaa

    Wow ... already bought it and its awesome ... playin for about 4 hours now ! great game ...

    sorry for my english i´m from germany ;)

  • Barry Ward (aka wastedyuthe)

    Definitely worth the money. Nice and easy to get into- hard to put down.

  • Barry Ward (aka wastedyuthe)

    Definitely worth the money. Nice and easy to get into- hard to put down.

  • hepcat330

    lol. the cheezy sax riff.

  • hepcat330

    lol. the cheezy sax riff.

  • Rockey04

    TYPO!!!

    Next to the iTunes like you put Virtual Villages instead of Virtual Villagers.

  • Rockey04

    TYPO!!!

    Next to the iTunes like you put Virtual Villages instead of Virtual Villagers.

  • wegmans

    avoid this at all costs.. i had the same thing on my Palm T|X back in the day, and it was not worth the cost! if this was $.99 then it would be worth a buy, but trust me there won't be much replay value, and you will find it a let down!!

    Even if they re-made it, they have not improved the graphics or plot, so download this with some reserve!

  • wegmans

    avoid this at all costs.. i had the same thing on my Palm T|X back in the day, and it was not worth the cost! if this was $.99 then it would be worth a buy, but trust me there won't be much replay value, and you will find it a let down!!

    Even if they re-made it, they have not improved the graphics or plot, so download this with some reserve!

  • majordude

    A Beavis and Butt-head laugh? WTF?!

  • majordude

    A Beavis and Butt-head laugh? WTF?!

  • Pingback: Virtual villagers:孤島に暮らす島人達と一緒に村を発展させていく本格的リアルタイムシミュレーションゲームはやはりすごかった! : AppBank

  • Jesse

    I have to utterly disagree with wegmans.

    I also had a Palm T|X, and I also bought this game back in the day, and I loved it.

    Replay value may not be great, but there's a LOT of game before you've discovered all the secrets of the island. Then, if you're compulsive like me, you can try to beat your "score."

    I am drooling after this port. I feel the price point for games should be $5, so I'm trying not to buy anything above that, but this is making it difficult...

  • Jesse

    I have to utterly disagree with wegmans.

    I also had a Palm T|X, and I also bought this game back in the day, and I loved it.

    Replay value may not be great, but there\'s a LOT of game before you\'ve discovered all the secrets of the island. Then, if you\'re compulsive like me, you can try to beat your \"score.\"

    I am drooling after this port. I feel the price point for games should be $5, so I\'m trying not to buy anything above that, but this is making it difficult...

  • Jesse

    update:

    I was jonesing too hard. I went and bought it full-price.

  • Jesse

    update:

    I was jonesing too hard. I went and bought it full-price.

  • http://redsharkreviews.wordpress.com Red Shark Reviews

    This game looks a lot like Animal Crossing.

  • http://redsharkreviews.wordpress.com Red Shark Reviews

    This game looks a lot like Animal Crossing.

  • wegmans

    Hey Jesse, my bad about the proggy... i remember i spent a lot of time completing all the challenges.. i just feel like in 3-5 years they should have vastly improved it..

    Did you ever play Bike or Die? They really need to port that, i feel like it would be a perfect fit for the iPhone!

  • wegmans

    Hey Jesse, my bad about the proggy... i remember i spent a lot of time completing all the challenges.. i just feel like in 3-5 years they should have vastly improved it..

    Did you ever play Bike or Die? They really need to port that, i feel like it would be a perfect fit for the iPhone!

  • Gamergurl

    What happened to this game...it's not available anymore...dang, I knew I should have bought it when it first came out!

  • Gamergurl

    What happened to this game...it's not available anymore...dang, I knew I should have bought it when it first came out!