By Brandy Shaul From games.com
If you're a pet lover, looking for a more realistic pet simulation game on Facebook (that is, as opposed to something altogether cartoon-y like Pet Society), you might be interested in Rivet Games' Pet Tales on Facebook. This particular game looks to be, in part, inspired by the likes of the Nintendo DS game Nintendogs, as you'll adopt realistic dogs and cats and interact with them in a variety of ways.
The overall goal of Pet Tales is to restore an old, abandoned park so that more cute and fluffy animals will be drawn in to play with you. You'll get to choose just one pet to start your game - either a dog or cat - and can then begin the park's restoration process via a quest system (more pets are available for the game's premium currency). You'll need to complete tasks such as pulling weeds or purchasing very specific decorations like beds or benches. As you do so, you'll earn experience points which help you level up, allowing for you to purchase previously locked items. It should be noted that some of these items require extra "building" once placed on your land (that is, requires you to ask your friends to send you building ingredients to finish that particular item), which has become an all too familiar feature in any game even resembling a city-builder.
Sometimes, new animals will randomly appear in your park as you make progress (or you may need to complete specific quests to draw them out). For example, in my game I chose a cat as my starting pet, and was quickly greeted by two dogs and another cat as I completed the game's first two quests. All animals freely walk around and interact with items in your park, but you can "force" your own animal to interact with specific items by clicking on them. This includes interacting with other animals, which rewards you with even more experience points or collection items for the game's collection system. One of the game's more interesting social features even sees your friends' animals automatically appearing in your park, allowing for more interaction and for your two animals to become friends.
Aside from simply decorating and interacting with items in your park, you can also interact with your chosen pet directly by clicking on them and choosing the "care" option from the menu. There, you'll see a zoomed in, animated view of your pet, as you can complete three different tasks: feeding them, giving them water, or playing with them. Each of these are accomplished via the press of a button, or you can simply click on your animal in the middle of the screen to be allowed to pet them. Again, the pet reacts in real time to your actions, as a cat might purr when you pet it by moving your mouse on its fur, for instance.
As you play the game, your pet's confidence level will increase in a meter totally separate from your experience points. With a high enough confidence level, your pet can go on Play Dates with your friends' pets, which not only raises the friendship level between the two pets, but also rewards you with extra experience points and coins for doing so. In terms of other social elements, you can take your pet to visit your neighbors' parks, and then allow them to interact with their pets, toys or decorations that you may not have at home. You can even sign their guestbook (if they have one) to let them know you stopped by.
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