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If you will notice, there are plenty of city-building simulation games available on Facebook, Just like in Cityville, you are there to build your own dream city from the ground up. There are even quite a few others that allow you to build up an empire and defeat the enemy factions by employing troops. But MegaZebra is hoping to bring us something creative out of them by combining the best of both their traits with their newest Facebook game – Magic Islands.
Without even an introduction to the premise of game story nor avatar customization, the game just starts you off with overall layout of the city map, where you can click on the building slots and start building your own home island wherein you have in your mind. However, your town can only hold 12 buildings slots at the start, and you will be able to upgrade the capacity as you go along. Following the tutorial prompts, you need to build your Magic Islands by creating a town-hall, which serves as the central base of your home land. You may upgrade the town hall later as it’s also a necessary requirement for some other buildings. Each building that you would like to construct requires certain amounts of resources, which come in the form of Stone, Wood and Gold. On the top of that, bulky resources are needed to be gathered in order to perform deep research into wide range of technologies. For researching you also need the resource called “knowledge”, it is produced by the college based on an hourly rate and can also be collected as the reward for quests. Diamonds, the ingame premium currency, can be used to instantly complete buildings or researchings.
Compared with other strategy games, the gameplay of Magic Islands is rather slow. There is far too much building /researching options and the game keeps popping up with tutorial after tutorial, so the game devolves into a repetitive and dull experience. I believe most likely you have killed the “quest” and “please accept the quest” buttons while you are doing build and maximizing your buildings on your islands. You may simply click somewhere to skip them, but it is just getting really annoying to see that I cannot get out of them. Having played the game for almost a week, but I haven’t graduated from tutorials yet? From my opinion, much more attentions would have been paid to introduce something that makes the game more fun.
Magic islands doesn’t really become a game about social activity until after you graduate from tutorials. What’s worse is that the game even does not have a text chat option. As for battles themselves, this too will also require some upgrading on your home island. You will need to unlock and build the barracks, where troops can be trained just as the quarry produces stones. Then you will be able to send out your troops consisting of an assortment of infantry and naval ship units to battle. You will also be able to visit the lands of your friends to see how their progress has gone in comparison to yours.
Although Magic Islands has already gathered a few thousand players during very short time, in my point of view, the game gives lackluster first impression. Besides, with the initial stage of your game experiences being taken up with repeated infrastructures maintenance, it is painfully dry boring gameplay. So I doubt it has enough staying power to really make a mark in the Facebook gaming world.
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