Pocket Butterflies is like Pocket Frogs, only more boring
Though the core gameplay was somewhat dull, Pocket Frogs still possessed a surprising level of addictiveness for players who wanted to collect every single little frog. Pocket Butterflies, as you can probably guess, attempts to emulate this formula only with butterflies instead. You can collect them, breed them, and even train them. Problem is, none of those activities are all that fun.
You’re put in control of both a butterfly habitat and nursery, and the ultimate goal, really, is to simply collect all of the different butterflies in the game. And there are a lot. The developer claims that there are more than 12,000 to collect, though in fairness many of them are simply palette-swapped versions of one another. Still, for the collection-minded among us, there’s no denying that there are a lot of butterflies to find in the game.
There are several ways to beef up your collection. First, you can breed butterflies. Depending on the pair you match up they’ll produce different offspring, and once mature you can then breed those butterflies. It’s a system that encourages diversity. You can also buy ones from a catalog, and then they’re delivered by mail, which takes a pre-determined amount of time. Raising a butterfly involves little more than training it (a baffling process that involves taming bees) and then giving them potions to keep them happy.
You can also sell and gift butterflies, as well as purchase various plants and insects to decorate your habitat. But even if you’re really intent on collecting every single butterfly in the game, none of the activities involved in collecting and raising them provides any fun. It’s simply tapping on a menu and waiting for things to happen. It’s like Pocket Frogs only more boring.
And worse still, you have to figure out everything on your own. There’s no tutorial to explain how things work, the game simply throws you in to the action and leaves you to your own devices. And lest you think that the in-game help system can provide some information, it’s actually not even in English, making it useless to all but the multilingual among us.
Pocket Butterflies at least looks nice. Though the backgrounds are static and devoid of personality, the butterflies themselves are colorful and lovely. And even though there are so many variations, it’s easy enough to tell one from the other, even if the difference is only a change of color.
For all of its flaws, Pocket Frogs is still the go-to mobile animal breeding game. And unless you’re obsessed with butterflies, Pocket Butterflies does nothing to change this. It offers up a carbon copy experience, only with less options and charm.