Island Life from Metaplace is a new challenger to the Facebook farming crown. As the name suggests, rather than using a traditional farm setting, players are given their own little tropical island to to grow and decorate.
The most noticeable differentiator between Island Life and its peers is the game’s art style. Most Facebook games go for a more cartoony, stylized 2D look. Island Life’s style is a stark contrast. It isn’t accurate to say that it’s “realistic,” but… almost. The decorations and other objects in Island Life have a 3D look that resembles plastic, or almost clay-like. If anyone played Donkey Kong Country back in the day, or Puzzle Pirates more recently, I think there are strong visual similarities to those two titles.
Other than the art style, Island Life should feel familiar to veteran Facebook farmers. You grow short or long term crops, harvest to turn a profit, plow the fields, and then repeat. Animals and trees can be purchased for bigger lump sums of cash, and can be harvested repeatedly. A wide variety of tropical decorations are available in the shop.
In fact, my biggest criticism of the title is that it doesn’t seem to do much to innovate or differentiate itself on a gameplay level. Island Life is fundamentally sound, but with literally dozens of Farming titles available on Facebook, any new challenger needs to provide a unique take on the genre in order to truly break out.
Still, if the screenshots below are attractive to you, you could do a lot worse than to give Island Life a spin. The game is being updated at a fast clip, and the core user experience is enjoyable. The game is growing at a modest pace – a month ago it had 15,000 daily players. Today that number has more than doubled, to 32,000 daily players.