Toy Village is a cute, yet generic city builder
Casual gamers never tire of building cities or planting crops in an increasingly fanciful array of environments. Glu Games is quite happy to feed mobile gamers hungry for more city builders with Toy Village, a fairly basic city building game with a novel look and premise. In Toy Village, you’re building a city for toy characters, so everything has a whimsical look right out of Babes in Toyland or Toy Story. Your main NPC mascot is Patch, a fluffy stuffed dog, and the buildings you erect distinctly look and feel like they’ve been assembled from colorful plastic.
Beyond Toy Village‘s look, there’s not much else to separate it from any other competently-made mobile city builder. Gameplay is basically about acquiring the game’s time-based currency, Boodle, by planting crops and operating businesses in a style similar to CityVille. The total number of toy works that live in your town is of paramount importance, though. The workers have to build any new additions to your city, so you can’t have more tasks going at once than you have workers living there. Visiting friends lets you borrow more workers from each other, which can speed things up considerably.
Once you acquire Boodle, you invest it in expanding your village with houses for more workers, more businesses, and more farmland. The crops you grow don’t share in the game’s fantasy theme. Instead, it’s the typical berries and vegetables. This part of the game genuinely feels quite strange. Toy Village seems more like a game where I’d be growing candy canes, gumdrops, and other fanciful plants right out of Willy Wonka’s gardens. It’s also a bit weird that the businesses you start are also the typical burger joints and cafes.
There are very few genuine flaws to Toy Village. For the most part, it’s a very well-implemented game, though occasionally the touch screen interface could be a bit stiff, requiring targets to be tapped on two or three times before the action would register. Zooming the game map in and out could also be a bit stiff, either zooming too far in or too far out. Lag wasn’t a serious problem, though sometimes it was hard to distinguish lag from interface issues.
If Toy Village is guilty of anything as a game, it’s guilty of not being very interesting. Once you get over the toy theme, this is a very standard city builder that doesn’t change up anything about the formula too much. Gamers looking for something familiar to use as a time waster on their handset of choice may view this as more of a positive than a negative. Parents looking for a cute city builder to enchant kids, an equivalent to Smurfs’ Village, probably won’t find that Toy Village does the trick. Regardless, mobile gamers looking for a well-implemented city builder should give Toy Village a look.