By Elise Marc
First of all, the idea of dragons and wizards existing is pretty exciting. Dragon parks, where you can hatch, raise, breed and interact with said dragons would, if the existed, be downright fantastic in my opinion. iProduct app Dragonvale allows for just that; the creation of huge island zoos in which you can develop your very own dragon empire. Pretty much, it’s the app version of Jurassic Park, except without all of the fighting and the people eating.
Dragonvale is a free app available on iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch and runs on real-time. The premise of the game involves you opening your own Dragon Park, buying dragon eggs and then nurturing them to life. Each egg takes a different amount of time to hatch depending on the complexity of the animal; if your egg takes two hours in the app, it will take two hours in real life.
Once hatched, you can watch your dragons grow and develop by feeding them, developing their enclosures and breeding them, all aspects of the game that come at a price. However, each dragon earns you a certain amount of money per minute, allowing you to develop your park to be as big or as extravagant as you want.
Similarly to classic computer park development games such as Roller Coaster Tycoon and Zoo Tycoon, the app doesn’t just allow for game interaction with the dragons. You can also re-design and extend your island, make the park more aesthetically pleasing to attract more guests and in turn make huge profits to continue such expansions.
As you earn more money, you advance up levels. With each level brings a new type of dragon, and if none of those catch your fancy, you can breed two together and create an entirely unique dragon yourself. Your new dragon will be luck of the draw; just wait nine hours and you’ll have a new baby in town! However, if patience is not your virtue, you can speed the process up by using gems. You only have a limited amount though unless you want to use real cash to purchase more, so use them wisely.
I came across this app on a very quiet night at work. At first, it didn’t exactly sound like the type of app I’d get into, however there is something strangely addictive about Dragonvale and I still haven’t been able to quite put my finger on what that is. Perhaps it’s because the game continues even once you’ve closed it; every time you open it, something has changed or something new has arrived. The game is simple to use and the interface is strikingly similar to that of Neopets.
If you were once a fan of Tamagochis, Neopets or Tycoon computer games, Dragonvale is the perfect simple app answer. It’s free and it’s very cute – what more could you ask for?