What do you get when you cross Diner Dash with, um, birds?
The answer is Birdies, a new multitasking/micromanagement game that lets you play as a babysitting stork – no kidding – who must look after birds dropped off by their parents.
While unoriginal (um, except for the bird part), this casual game is mildly fun – especially for younger players and newcomers to the genre.
OK, here’s the premise. You’re a stork who’s opened some kind of daycare facility. You hear a doorbell chime and up walks a bird with a baby bird or two. You must drag and drop them into a nest, whereby they’ll need some food after a few seconds. You have some bird helpers prepare some snacks and when the meals are completed, they rest on tree trunks, waiting to be picked up by you and served to the hungry birds. As with Diner Dash and many other waitress-style serving games, you’ll receive bonus points for chaining moves together, such as carrying two or three trays of food for multiple birds instead of serving each separately.
Then your birds will grow tired – as indicated by a little crescent moon above their heads – so you must sing them to sleep by whistling a lullaby. Other birds may ask for some water, which you can get for them by clicking on a leaf on the ground and then putting it under a dripping pool of water, which is then brought to them to sip. In later levels, you’ll also have to entertain the birds to keep them happy and other responsibilities.
Another challenge is dragging and dropping the birds into the correct nest bed, based on their gender, which you can see by their color and with the little male/female sex sign by the nest.
Eventually, their parents come to pick them up and you must return them satisfied to earn more money. At the end of each "day" you’ll be given your score, and must reach the minimum dollar goal to continue or you must try again. If you can, try to get the maximum dollars for a job well done. Eventually you’ll move onto other nurseries.
Also, at the start of each day you can purchase upgrades to your swamp nursery such as additional food or water stations, more nest spots, and so forth. Every few levels introduces new goodies, ranging from items that help to aesthetic upgrades such as flowers and stones. You can also try to win prizes by performing extra jobs for your boss, such as planting reeds by the water.
Birdies is might be fine for newbie or young players looking for an accessible micromanagement game, but I doubt there is enough depth or new ideas here to keep a seasoned Diner Dash gamer interested for very long. It’s cute, and worth the download to play the free trial, but don’t expect to be blown away.