If you ever built a treehouse as a kid, or you’re a fan of the Swiss Family Treehouse in Disneyland (AKA Tarzan’s Treehouse), JollyWood could be the social game for you. After one year of development, Tecmo Koei’s Singapore division has finally released their first social game. It’s a building game that could be described as Playfish’s Hotel City meets lolapps’ Ravenwood Fair.
In JollyWood, you build tree houses with different activities and games for your adorable fellow critters to enjoy. As you build more elaborate tree houses, you move on to more wonderful looking trees. While the production levels of JollyWood aren’t bad, there’s currently a lack of activities to maintain player interest.
You begin JollyWood by choosing your critter avatar from options that include a dog, bird, monkey and others. You then go through the basics of how to purchase and use the basic building blocks of your treehouse, such as ladders and planks. With these basic building blocks, you can be pretty creative in how you design your treehouse. If you consider yourself a person who takes time to craft nice looking farms, cities, or cafes, you will really enjoy this part of the game as there are many different slides, stairs, pin wheels and other decorations to choose from. However, you need to be careful because building your treehouse. It’s more complicated than dropping buildings in a city simulation as the different parts of the treehouse need to be put together the right way or else they are useless.
In order to attract more critters to your treehouse, you purchase and place various items such as arcade machines, drink stands, swings and other amusements around your treehouse. You can also spruce up your treehouse with decorations such as flowers, balloons, paintings and other items.
The resources you use are not unlike other social games. Leaves act as the basic currency. You also need supplies that act as raw material for constructing items. Earning experience points and leveling up unlocks other items for your tree. Facebook credits can be used to expand your tree and purchase more exclusive items.
While JollyWood does succeed in some creative aspects, there needs to be more things to do in the game. The economics and rate of which you gain leaves and supplies seems to be too slow leaving you waiting around for things to do. One hopes Tecmo Koei will make some adjustments here. Overall, JollyWood has a good foundation to grow from but it’s clear that the developers need to go through their learning curve more in social game design.JollyWood Quick Start Guide >>
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