Jan 31, 2011
NOTE: Game is currently not available via Android Market, but is available directly from the EA Mobile Club.
If you love classic board games, EA is satisfying your love of classic board games on Android, first with Monopoly, and now with The Game of Life. The ultimate goal of The Game of Life is to end the game with the highest net worth. Sociologists, please wait your turn, I’ll address your concerns later in this review. You achieve this by getting a job and advancing across the board, collecting money and Life squares that are worth money at the end of the game. Along the way, you’ll make decisions like whether to jump straight into a career or go to college, whether to take a safe path or risky path through life, and more. Also, you’ll be choosing a career, getting married, and having kids along the way, with the final stop on your way being retirement.
The big advantage of this digital conversion of Life is that it moves at an incredibly brisk pace compared to the real version. Also, you can fast forward or just outright skip computer opponents’ plays, to make the game go even faster. Technically, the game looks simple but very nice – everything is in 3D and looks all nice and shiny. Plus, the digital spinner wheel won’t randomly break like a real version of the game would. Having the game on your phone with support for up to 4 people is just so much more neat.
The only real problem with The Game of Life is that there really isn’t a lot of strategy involved – it’s based more on what you spin and what squares you land on, what cards you draw, instead of actual strategy, like similar release Monopoly. Obviously, a board game is going to involve a lot of randomness, but I feel far less in charge of my fate than in other games. Also, the lack of any kind of online play is disheartening. As far as the game’s concept goes, if you like to look at life from a more, shall we say, subversive viewpoint, you may find the game’s goal of being in a heterosexual marriage and trying to have kids and end your life with as much money as possible to not really be ‘victory’. You may find the game to just be kind of silly in that way.
But hey, it’s better for a game to be interesting than boring, and The Game of Life is interesting, if not exactly accurate to our world today. This is a well-made version of a classic board game, and while it’s not the most advanced game ever, this is a good game to have around on your phone for a quick, simple game, or if you need to entertain the kids.