- Release Date: 2011-9
- Publisher: MetroGames
- Developer: MetroGames
- Genre: social game
Coco Girl? Definitely a girl’s game. It is the first thought occurring to me, especially with its title resemblance with the prior It Girl. It’s easy to presume even before playing that the staple elements may not be able to stay away from shopping, dressing-to-kill, make-up, and fashion. With not much expectation of surprises in mind, I played it anyway only to find such a try worthwhile. It is simple and shallow as expected, and it’s enjoyable and passable as well.
Unlike the marked competition mechanics in It Girl, Coco Girl creates a more friendly world for trendy girls to better relish fashion while less worry being outshined by others. The core gameplay is clearly displayed in the interface of Coco City, filled by 7 major buildings including Home, Salon, Shops, Market, Carnival, Coco’s It Girl and Hall of Fame.
Character creation just starts from the coco salon, where we select the looks by choosing eyebrow, eye, lips, nose, skin and hairstyle out of a wide range of options. In addition to appearance and hairdo, Salon is also the very place to provide make-ups. With the basic image done, next move is naturally to go shopping for the first piece of clothing. Coco Shops are large with 20 brand shops such as Puccu, Paris and coco couture, etc offering fashional articles ranging from the gorgeous evening dress, to stylish boots and to bags and jewelary in vogue.
Desirable though it is, everything has a price. To own them, we need rubies (in-game currency), which can be earned by different ways. The first and foremost is via finishing quest on the daily rubies-maker checklist at Home. Quests are all simple, but rich in variety. One type seems a little silly to me, for it actually asks us to spend much more rubies in shops and salons in order to win a smaller amount as rewards. For instance, one quest may ask you to change make-up in salon by buying a lipstick (costing 150 rubies at least) and a mascara (300 rubies at least), and reward with 30 rubies when the quest is finished. Is this quest meant to fill up my pocket or burn a hole in it on earth?
Compared with simple (and somewhat stupid) shopping quests, a more interesting type is to open your Fashion Expert magazine and join the Looks-rating play. Different dressing style and looks are depicted on every page; we vote for the most amazing looks out of three candidates, rate the looks of a particular model (five star in measure), or give a thumb-up or thumb-down to the dress style based on its appropriateness to a certain occasion. The quest is done when the magazine is turned to the last page, and rewards of a set amount of rubies will be given. Yet the rates made are left as open question: the more people agree with your opinion, the more rubies you get the next day
Besides, another type of quest is called Fashion Slot that can be played in Coco Carnival. It is about to stop the spinning wheel at the right time so as to pinpoint the five required items on the list one by one. The wheel accelerates its spinning rate one item after another, so the first three are easy to get, the fourth difficult and the fifth simply subject to luck. The more items you get, the higher rewards you receive. And it can only be played three times a day at most, and extra play needs to be bought for facebook credits. That’s true to the other two mini-games in Carnival too.
Carnival also contains the mini-games of Love Machine and Elusive Treasure. Love Machine is like a simplified jigsaw game that requires turning disorderly-ranged pipes to form a path connecting the marked couple before the pre-set time runs out. And the faster you get the couple together, the more tickets you win (tickets can be redeemed into rubies or other items). As to Elusive Treasure, it is to find several objects on a map during a limited amount of time. While it’s difficult to find them all solely by naked eyes, it’s too easy to finish with the offered binoculars that will narrow down and pinpoint the searching scope.
What’s mentioned above is the major gameplay. The rest two buildings of Coco’s It Girl and Hall of Fame play lesser role in the game, only serving to forge gorgeous looks and strive for the reputation of Top Daily Looks. In all seven buildings, the side-scrolling interfaces are drawn delicately, presenting an attractive fashion world. Although some of the quests concerning shopping are boring in itself, it’s made sufferable simply because of the numerous articles of clothing almost covering all styles, be it faddish or elegant. In this virtual fashion circle, it’s a kind of enjoyment even if you only do window shopping.
Yet the most gorgeous looks can only be created by money. Rubies are accumulated slowly by two-digit number per quest. So I played two hours, taking quests and playing mini-games to win rubies, but still couldn’t buy a single evening dress in the end. Unless you invest real money, it’s almost impossible to shine in the Hall of Fame. Coco Girl on the whole is beautifully designed, in graphic and in gameplay. What if it had kept its money-eating intention at bay!
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