Tag Archives: Ngmoco

My Take on ngmoco’s ‘We Rule’

A disclaimer that you should read before reading this: I refuse to be sucked into the world of Farmville; therefore, I have never played the game, I hear, has strapped down almost the entire population of Facebook.  So with that said, let’s move on to We Rule.

Ngmoco recently released We Rule for the iPhone and iPod Touch, a game similar to Tap Farm and other farm tycoon games made popular by Zynga’s Farmville on Facebook.  While it didn’t receive as much hype as Eliminate, an online first-person shooter, it was said to be the first freemium game from ngmoco to use the DLC model correctly (along with God Finger, not available in the US yet).

So I thought to myself, “Ehh, I’ll give this a shot.”  So I opened the App Store on my iPhone, installed the application, and launched a Farmville-esque game for the first time in my entire life.  And with that said, I was disappointed with the game and had fun with the game at the same time.

Here’s what had me frustrated: the online connection problems.  This thing is unable to connect to the server 1 out of every 2 times I fire up the game (50% for you percentage-oriented people), and of course like anyone, I got frustrated.  WiFi or 3G, doesn’t matter, it doesn’t connect to the server very well.  I was a bit enlightened though when they gave me 10 free mojo (things that make your plants grow instantly), saying sorry for all the server problems.  But still, the problem persists.

So moving on from server issues, I noticed that placing houses and objects was quite difficult for me, and the imaginary castle guards inside my kingdom castle seemed to scream, “WE NEED A GRID!!!”  And when I mean scream, I mean turned up the volume to 11.  Placing objects is so tricky, especially when you’re trying to place your petunias so precisely right next to each other, and it does start to get frustrating once the objects start refusing to go to the places you want it to go.

But still I was merciful with these problems and persevered and played through this horrendous mess, ultimately finding a bit of gold among the muck.  The freemium model works here, and the mojo isn’t necessary for your survival.  Here’s why:

  1. You receive 5 mojo for every time you level up.
  2. Free mojo from downloading apps and such.
  3. Plants will grow on their own, it just takes some time.

If you still don’t get it, here’s a simpler explanation: mojo is extra.  Buying mojo is totally extra, and even if you buy it, it doesn’t exactly help so much that you become the most powerful person in the We Rule world.  I thought ngmoco did a good job of finally stabilizing a once shaky DLC model, and freemium may actually be a good thing for the App Store and the iPhone gaming market.

So with all that said and done, what are my final thoughts on We Rule?  It’s a game that has potential.  I liked it, I’m still playing it to this day, and I’m used to being patient with the server.  I haven’t paid one penny for any mojo within the game, and I’m still prospering (somewhat) within my little group of friends.

I think that once ngmoco fixes ALL of the server issues and slight bugs within We Rule, it could become for the iPhone as Farmville was for Facebook.  It’s definitely got potential; execution just needs a bit of work.  I think ngmoco is starting to redeem itself in my eyes, and We Rule is just ngmoco’s first step to proving itself as a good, iPhone game developing company.

We Rule is totally free, and there’s also a version available for the iPad (that’s free too).

ngmoco:) Acquires Freeverse

The latest news (and a big one) is that ngmoco:) has acquired Freeverse.  After raising yet another $25 million dollars from investors, ngmoco:) went ahead and bought Freeverse to continue on its domination of the App Store.  Last year, ngmoco:) switched to the freemium model (free + DLC), and all of their upcoming games will contain this model.

Meanwhile, Freeverse’s games have succeeded and succeeded well.  Skee-Ball has hit the number one spot on the Top 100 Paid Apps chart along with Flick Fishing amassing over one million downloads.  Their other popular paid apps include Flick Bowling and Moto Chaser, both of which saw early success when the App Store was first introduced.

In total, ngmoco:) has raised over $40 million dollars from investors.  Their freemium games include Eliminate and Touch Pet Dogs, and both were downloaded 9 million times, with 2% of people willing to pay.  They also have two upcoming games, GodFinger and WeRule, that will adopt this free + DLC model.

ngmoco:) plans to release 20 iPhone titles by the end of this year, and Freeverse should be releasing around the same amount.  We’ll have more news as the story develops.

[via TechCrunch]

‘We Rule’ Upcoming Game from ngmoco:)

I received an interesting email from ngmoco:) today, including much of the following:

We Rule puts you in charge of a kingdom. Your kingdom. You’ll raise crops, collect taxes and trade with neighboring realms. You’ll act as city planner and landscaper. It’s your space, and it’s fully customizable.

Most importantly, you’ll be playing and cooperating with your friends.

Soon you’ll be crafting your own kingdom in We Rule. We’ll share more details about our social kingdom builder shortly.

Of course, it sounds to me as some sort of medieval, tycoon sort of game along with some sort of mix in with Farmville.  Maybe even a medieval Sim City if you want to call it that, but we’ll have to see as not much more information is available.  We’ll keep you posted.

‘Eliminate’ Available Worldwide

If you were waiting for this title, don’t hesitate any longer.  Eliminate is now available worldwide for those who have been waiting and waiting for this highly anticipated first person shooter.  While I was quite disappointed with this title, it’s still pretty good for free.

While some may not entirely agree with the DLC system, you do receive 15 minutes of playtime everyday, and the game doesn’t look all that bad.  Controls work out very well, and the design has definitely been well thought out.  Eliminate is now available for free in all the App Stores worldwide, and there are power cells you can buy for $0.99 each if you run out.  I’m not a huge fan of this system, but Eliminate is still worth a download.

Check out our first hands-on video for the game also.

Editor’s Note: This hands on video marks the opening of our Youtube channel!  Thanks to Daniel for getting up our first video for the channel.  Watch for more of our timely hands on videos with new games.  For now, please take a moment and subscribe to the channel.

Eliminate and Touch Pets Dogs Live in Canada

Both of Ngmoco‘s games: Eliminate and Touch Pets Dogs, have just been approved by Apple.  The best news for gamers is that both of these games are coming free of cost.  If you really must give away your money, there are options to buy DLC in both of the games.

Ngmoco has decided to make these games available to download only in Canada at first.  Once server testing has been completed, they’ll set the games to be available worldwide.  I’d expect everyone to be able to get these games by the end of the weekend at the latest.  You can follow ngmoco’s Twitter channel to know immediately when the game has been released.

For the unfamiliar, Eliminate is an online multiplayer first person shooter.  Touch Pets Dogs has you taking care of your own puppy.  The game bears an immediate resemblance to the Nintendo DS hit Nintendogs.

Follow the links if you’re in Canada and start playing!  Eliminate and Touch Pets Dogs.