After accepting a phone upgrade from my service provider, I decided to embark on a mission of investigating some new Android software and for the first time found myself genuinely keen to download a game. The game in question – Zookeeper. Why? Because its probably the one game I wasted months of my life to on the Nintendo DS (before giving over ownership of aforementioned DS to my kids)
So now I’m presented with the “adult” version of the same DS title. I say adult because by my reckoning anything that goes on my phone is just as acceptable for adults to play as anyone else and I can fully justify wasting hours of time on a tile matching game featuring cute animals as long as its on my phone.
For those that do not know, Zookeeper is basically a matching game where you slide tiles in order to make rows of 3 or more animals, for that you are awarded points. Where the Android version differs from the DS title is that online “battles” are fought by two players connecting, playing their level and then the scores of each being compared and “damage” being attributed (depending on how successful or not you were). When your opponents health runs out, you win. If there is no winner by the 5th round then the winner is decided by the one with the most health. The game is as much as luck (getting a good set of animal tiles to work with) as it is skill.
Your opponents are selected randomly from around the world, the pre/post match chat is safe in that there are only a few generic greetings you can give. You have a world ranking (mine is currently at a poor 200k) and there’s tournaments, gifts and bonuses to be had (including achievements to give you perks).
Zookeeper is free, you can pay for extra gaming perks – but these are certainly not required. The game is not ruined with adverts and providing that doesn’t change you have a great title here for your Android device which should not require a very powerful CPU at all.
Graphically, its colourful and simple, but the real charm of this game is its addictive quality. The only disappointment is that the monotonous DS theme has been changed subtly (and not for the better in my view) and its also absent from the game. Why would I want such a theme playing non-stop? Because part of addiction was having the tune running around in your head long after you’d stopped playing.