Olympic Games City review

Olympic Games City is the official social game of the London 2012 Olympic Games. It was developed by LIFO Interactive and published by Neowiz Internet, who also published the official mobile game for iOS and Android.

Olympic Games City is a citybuilder rather than a competitive sports title. Players are challenged with building up their own version of Olympic host city London and must attract as many visitors as possible while hosting the Games. This is accomplished through constructing buildings, collecting income and ensuring everything is connected with a road network infrastructure. Once Olympic venues such as the Olympic Stadium have been constructed, the possibility of “hosting” various sporting events opens up in exchange for various “skill cards.” Players do not actually compete in the events — beginning an event simply creates a Timeline post inviting other players to join the game, with rewards on offer for those who do.

Social features for the game include the aforementioned event hosting as well as the usual ability to visit friends’ cities and see how they’re doing. In order to expand their Olympic city, players must also acquire expansion permits from their friends, and various other items are best acquired through cooperation and gift-exchanging with friends.

In terms of monetization, Olympic Games City is similarly very conventional, making use of three different currencies — a soft, a hard, and a social. Soft currency is primarily used for purchasing non-Olympic buildings that generate income; hard currency may be used to hurry production, skip quests or purchase premium items; and social currency, which is acquired through helping out in friends’ cities and hosting events is used to build the six specialist sporting buildings.

As far as social citybuilders go, Olympic Games City is a perfectly competent one, albeit one with rather cheap-looking graphics and very little in the way of distinguishing features over its rivals. The “event hosting” feature could have been a nice touch, but in practice is little more than an attempt at viral marketing. In fact, the most disappointing thing about the game overall is that it really doesn’t capture the excitement of the Olympics at all, and focuses surprisingly little on the sporting side of things. Instead, it, like most other citybuilders, focuses entirely on making as much money as possible and producing a city more aesthetically pleasing than one’s friends.

This sense of “missing the point” is all the more surprising considering that Neowiz also published the very good official mobile game on iOS and Android — which does allow players to compete in events both solo and against online rivals. Quite why the official social game was developed as yet another example of an incredibly overpopulated genre rather than the relatively underrepresented sports genre is a mystery, and the title fails to stand out amid the crowd as a result. Consequently, it’s fairly likely that this game will fade to obscurity after the Olympics are over.

Olympic Games City currently has 450,000 monthly active users and 50,000 daily active users. Follow its progress with AppData, our tracking service for social games and developers.

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Not really in the spirit of the Olympics.