Casual Game Reviews - The Best of March 2009

Casual Game Reviews - The Best of March 2009
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This list will give you my top picks for casual games from March. As usual, these games usually have a demo available from their seller. Always try it out before you buy. It also seems like there wasn’t a lot of variety in March, since most of the good titles were just sim games. Apologies on that front.

Romopolis (4 out of 5)

Romopolis is a building simulation similar to Build-A-Lot. You are a Roman engineer put in charge of improving a number of the emperor’s cities. The mechanics are pretty close to Build-A-Lot, which is not a bad thing. It’s familiar and any fan of the genre should be able to jum

p right into the gameplay.

The actual game has you not only building houses but also providing services for them. Larger houses demand access to markets, temples, and baths to remain happy. A number of levels also feature rough terrain that must be cleared first, which is actually a nice extra challenge. Overall, it’s a nice twist on the genre.

Be A King (4 out of 5)


This is another game that sticks close to the Build-A-Lot model. You play a prince who needs to improve his kingdom’s villages. This is also pretty similar to Romopolis' gameplay. You construct farms and houses to grow your population and meet level goals.

The nice addition is a security setting. You need well placed barracks and heroes to address side events and fight monsters that attack your village. This adds a new side to the fairly simple gameplay and really makes it interesting.

Another plus is that there are a lot of levels and two maps to work play through. This gives it pretty good value for a casual game.

Funky Farm 2 (4 out of 5)

I actually don’t remember Funky Farm 1, but the sequel I found was pretty cool. You need to run a farm, but the game is mainly based around simple actions. You pick up eggs, milk cows, shear sheep, butcher pigs, etc. It isn’t just a management game though.

All of the actions are done through the toolbar on the bottom of the screen. This bar moves various buttons along the bottom that represent the various actions. In order to shear sheep, you have to find the shears. There needs to be a chicken button to buy a chicken. You’ll get access to more commands as you continue to upgrade the farm. This little aspect makes the game fairly interesting and keeps you thinking. One strategy won’t always work and you really need to plan a bit to excel.


Another cool thing is the reward system. Some games require a good bit of work between minor upgrades. Each level in this game ends up with you getting a new building or pet. This gives the game a good pace. Extra money is put toward the accessory fund, which lets you buy items for your animals. These will then randomly spawn on some of your animals. Seeing a chicken with a top hat and a bow tie doesn’t really get old.

It is very easy though. You can actually finish a good portion of the game in the demo alone. You’ll have to decide for yourself whether the extra bit after the free hour is worth it.


It was a bit of slow month for games in March. Fans of sim games should find these to be fun distractions though. April is shaping up pretty well though with a little more variety in games coming up, so we should have a full list available soon.