Adele Caelia takes a look at the games on Facebook, pointing out the best out of the bunch, and why they stand out.
Give In to the Madness
Facebook has an overwhelming amount of games that it’s users can play, and if you are a Facebook member, you have most assuredly gotten an invite or two. When I first began getting invites, I’ll admit that I was a bit of an elitist. I thought they were silly, and not worth my time. After all I was a “real" gamer, and these games were below me. However, with life hitting me full blown, and leaving little time for MMOs, I gave in to the Facebook madness. Yet, with so many games available, finding the best takes some trial and error. Lucky for you, I’ve done the grunt work already.
Kingdoms of Camelot
Kingdoms of Camelot is still in beta, yet it has already topped many other games in the Facebook realm. In Kingdoms of Camelot you start out with a small undeveloped city, plus a small amount of resources that you will use to begin building up your city and army. There is a quest guide that helps you make good choices, and rewards you for leveling up as you move along. As your army and city grows, so does your rank, and your ability to travel out into the world and attack other player’s cities. It plays much like Travian and Tribal Wars, except in my opinion it looks better, and the fact that it is connected to Facebook keeping you from having to create an outside account is a huge plus. Another added bonus is the ability to easily invite and connect with your friends in the game, allowing you to instantly play with a group of people you are familiar with.
Mafia Wars, like it’s name proclaims, is all about creating your own mob made up of your family and friends. As you build your mafia you will level up by doing jobs, such as robbing a cab driver, and in many cases you have the opportunity to take down a Boss. You can also level up by fighting other mobs, but this is a bit slower, although you do get the satisfaction of feeling awesome, and your rankings go up as well. As your mafia grows you can purchase properties and businesses to keep the cash flowing, as well as travel to new places such as Cuba, Moscow, and Bangkok. What puts Mafia Wars on top? Game play aspects such as, the multi-player option of gaining help from your friends, the interesting weapons and items, the ability to travel to new places, and of course watching your mob grow and conquer the world.
Island Life is also still in beta, meaning it is sure to get better and better, and it is also created by none other than developer super star, Raph Koster. Island Life has similar aspects to Farmville, in the sense that you grow and sell your own crops in order to make money to customize your island. While I have never been a fan of Farmville, finding it lacking depth, Island Life has corrected this issue by allowing players to visit their friend’s islands. And yes, you can visit your friend’s farms, but in Island Life, you truly visit them in person with your avatar, and have the ability to chat with them. While you are there, don’t forget to look for that sparkly item on the ground (a sort of treasure hunt when you visit your friends). In addition, the game offers a full screen option that not only gives the game a smooth and attractive appearance, but it also wipes out those pesky ads. As if these features weren't enough, players can express themselves with cool emotes such as /faint and /dance. Island Life also boasts a party island that acts as a central hub where all players in the game can meet up to chat and get to know one another. It will be interesting to see where this game goes once it is further in development.
Treasure Madness is a great game for those who love history and mini-games. In Treasure Madness you get to be a pseudo archaeologist (think Indiana Jones), and go from land to land by the use of maps, which you must purchase with the coin you earn, to hunt for treasures. If you have dug up a treasure you will be prompted to play one of a variety of mini-games to attain it. The mini-games include Memory, a Tetris like game, and Pearl Mania to name a few. Each artifact belongs in a set, and once you have completed the entire set, it can be sold to the museum for cash. Each artifact also contains a description of who in history used it, and for what reason, making this game unique and a somewhat educational.
Café World allows you to kick it up a notch, Emeril style. You begin with a small café, a few stoves, and a couple of simple recipes. To level up, you must cook the recipes, and serve them to customers to make money. As you gain levels, you open up new recipes with higher price ranges, and also varying cooking times. Overtime you will gain the ability to hire friends as servers, speeding up the time that it takes customers to get food on their table. The faster your food is served, the happier the customers are, and the café rating climbs, bringing in more customers. Once enough neighbors and coin has been gained, you can expand and decorate your café. This is what makes the game fun. Some of the items are fairly pricey, making it a must to get to the higher levels if you want your café to look just so. Another fun aspect is the neighbor rankings. The game arranges your neighbors according to their XP points, making it somewhat of a race to beat your friends to the next level.