Tango-paced success stories
In terms of so-called micromanagement games, 2006 was even more fruitful. Many developers produced a number of diner-dash-like titles based on the same scheme: they created new graphics and characters, while game play basics remained untouched. A title character (yep, that's a rare type of casual games with a live character!) is to accept and fulfill customers' orders to make customers happy at a time limit.
Instead of a restaurant game boom, Diner Dash game series by Playfirst are the first and the most recognizable games.
This year Playfirst released the second version of Diner Dash called Diner Dash 2: Restaurant Rescue that sold just as well as the previous one. In this sequel Flo and the other small restaurant owners stand up to fight against Mr.Big intending to get the diners out of the business.
And finally, at the end of year came out Diner Dash: Flo on the Go - here Flo has to work even while being on a cruise. Here the game takes place on the board of a cruise liner. A number of new features added to the game is what makes it more exciting.
What's the key to success of all the action games that Playfirst creates? "Story is a powerful tool for creating an emotional connection"- states Kenny Shea Dinkin, VP & Executive Producer for PlayFirst in his speech "Perfect Pitch" for CGA 2006: Europe East. This is why each new game released by PlayFirst is a new story that a player is interested in getting involved with.
The latest game of this sort published by BigFish at the end of 2006 is Flower Shop: Big City Break that took its place in top downloads list soon after it had been published at the website.
Flowershop: Big City Break
Flower Shop – Big City Break was a TikGames gift to all fans of Diner Dash, Cake Mania, Plantasia and other games of simulator type. Those who played Flower Shop game are already familiar with Meg: in Flower Shop – Big City Break the girl is again involved in flower business. The player’s task is to help the lady turn small flower shop into flourishing business. Together with Meg you'll visit 4 store locations at more than 60 levels, serve the most hard-driving customers and earn money for extra items. Game's graphics is perfect but it requires a 3D video card support. Read full review of the game
Download Flower Shop - Big City Break here
Other chef d'oeuvres in micromanagement (in chronological order):
Carrie the Caregiver
Carrie the Caregiver developed by The Article 19 Group and released in December, became largely popular. Easy and nice are the best verbs to describe the game. The point for a player is to attend babies and make sure the main heroine takes a good care of herself. Easy to grasp and succeed, the game features nice graphics and lovely music. Moreover, it does not require much of your computer. Game screenshots, melodies, and other interesting stuff can be found at http://www.carriethecaregiver.com/
Download Carrie the Caregiver
Delicious Deluxe developed by Zylom and released late summer, is a story of Emily who's followed an example of many other young ladies and decided to waste the most beautiful years of her life for restaurant workJ. This game, is, too, a "slow" version with different customer types and two modes. Easy to grasp and play.
Download Delicious Deluxe
another strategy-action mix from Playfirst released in spring 2006. You are to take a good care of your garden, expand its territory and make it more beautiful. Water your flowers in time, plant new ones and destroy the harmful bugs. Just like in other action games, you are pressed on time, the point is to think ahead what plants to water first, where to dig etc. As far the plot is concerned, the game looks a lot like Flower Shop: Big City Break now.
Snowy: Lunch Rush
This game by Alawar Ent. in my opinion is the funniest game and a very quality clone of Diner Dash. What's funny about it? First, instead of pretty young lady you'll see a cute and elegant white bear Snowy wearing a bow tie. Snowy along with his friend Brownie are to "serve some grub" in their own restaurant. All Snowy's moves are rush, which makes the game pretty vivid and intriguing. Plus, the camera view has several directions, so the playing field does not seem flat.
Download Snowy Lunch Rush now
Cakemania by Sandlot Games that came out in spring, hit the big time immediately and was acknowledged the game of the year. It uncovers a story of Jill, a young baker who is back to her home city and has to get her grandmother's business to the top. The point is to bake cakes of different shapes and ingredients following your customer's preferences, serve customers in time and get the cash for your job. In my opinion, the game seems too slow if you're used to the "tango" rhythm in Diner Dash. So, its slow pace and seemingly handmade paintings are what it's special for.
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