Virtual Villagers - An Evolution in Time
Virtual Villagers has had 3 installments and each one seems to be better than the last, but what are the significant changes and what concepts have remained over time that make this series of PC games so popular?
What Type of Game is Virtual Villagers?
Virtual Villagers is an simulation game that lets you play God and take control of villagers as they find a way to live and thrive in their habitat. You'll start off small and usually have obstacles in your path, but if you stick with the program long enough, you'll find that even simple villagers can make their village prosper! The unique mechanic in these games is that time continues to advance and your villagers engage in automatic behaviour while the game is off.
Virtual Villagers - A New Home
Virtual Villagers - A New Home
The game that started everything! Teach your people how to thrive and survive after a volcanic eruption that got them stranded on a mysterious new island. Teach them skills and help them develop the land - even making your village grow and prosper! Explore and resotre the whole island to its natural beauty and watch as survivors become thriving villagers! Since you're just starting out in the island of Isola, there's slot of mess to clean up and everyone's basically untrained so have them clean up the island, build , research or forage for food.
Eventually, things will work out and then they'll have a set type of job. As you progress along the game, you'll be given certain scenarios like stuff washed up on the beach and as a village must decide whether you should open it or not. This is really just the luck of the draw, but its a lot of fun. Virtual Villagers is really a good start or introduction to a game like this, not much distraction and the playing in real time means that you can leave them and alone and still have the game progress.
Virtual Villagers 2 - The Lost Children
The castaways of Isola are living in harmony now and yet more challenges await! A group of children need your help surviving on this mysterious island. New puzzles, new adventures and new mysteries are offered. What do these children have to do and what secrets does this island possess? Find out!
Virtual Villagers 2 follows the saga of the first Virtual Villagers game, where two villages from your tribe stumble upon a secret village filled with kids. As the resident adults, you must help these children out and give them a better lifestyle.
The area is different of course, and there is a big difference this time - you're out of food and you're basically training teenagers and kids to be able to fend off for themselves. There are more obstacles, more activities and certainly more challenges - there's a waterfall and a pond somewhere - some of the kids are already trainees so its not that hard but your main concern will really be food. Can you forage for something fast enough to keep these kids from going hungry?
Virtual Villagers 2
Virtual Villagers - The Secret City
A new group of villagers are out to explore the wonderful island of Isola! Take your villagers up north and embark on a journey with a group of adventurous villagers in their quest to populate a new part of the mysterious island of Isola! Land on the hidden shores of the northern side of the island and explore what was once a secret city. Find new sources of food to nourish your villagers and help them rebuild the remains of this long lost city. Who lived here before? Where have they gone? What is the secret of Isola? Lead your tribe to the answers in Virtual Villagers - The Secret City!
The Secret City is actually somewhat of a mystery - you'll have quite some time to try and get the feel of it. Unlike the other version there's already a baby in your tribe. Begin the actual game by having someone become the Chief by putting on the robe you'll find at the Amphitheater. This will set the course for the game to begin in earnest.
With three games in the bag and a fourth one probably in the works, what's to stop people from playing Virtual Villagers onwards? I say nothing. Partly due to the fact that the game truly does evolve over time. You'd see the jump in graphics, from A New Home to The Secret City taking a big leap. The challenges also change as you see a lot of different elements being put in the game, giving you more reasons to enjoy Virtual Villager.
What I love most about Virtual Villagers and its franchise is that no matter how many times you play - nothing will be the same, exactly as the villagers move in real time and they seem to develop lives of their own. Determining which villagers take what job is something that will amuse you - the prospect of creating babies, getting the Golden Child and what not are added challanges to the game that really spice up your playing time.
All in all, something about Virtual VIllagers remain timeless and innovative - you can be assured that when the fourth installment comes out, you'll be able to play something that you're totally familiar with and yet is still as challenging as the first Virtual Villager game that you played when it was first released!